Episode: EP 20 – Chatter in your cheddar? Microbe cross-talk just got interesting!


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EP 20 – Chatter in your cheddar? Microbe cross-talk just got interesting!
Cheese is gooey, delicious, and comes in so many flavors and forms! But, how does this food, which starts with the simple base ingredient of milk, acquire this diversity in flavor? The credit goes to a variety of microbes that not only alter the color, smell, texture and flavor of cheese – but also do it via complex molecular signaling networks. Join me as I meet with Dr. Laura Sanchez - a rising star in the field of natural products chemistry who is applying advanced tools in chemistry to listen in on those microbial conversations underway in Bayley Hazen Blue cheese. Cassandra Quave Dr. Cassandra Quave is best known for her ground breaking research on the science of botanicals. Scientists in her research lab work to uncover some of nature’s deepest secrets as they search for new ways to fight life-threatening diseases, including antibiotic resistant infections. Working with a global network of scientists and healers, Cassandra and her team travel the world hunting for new plant ingredients, interviewing healers, and bringing plants back to the lab to study. She works closely with international collaborators to support access and benefit sharing initiatives in the communities that contribute to these studies. Besides research, Cassandra is an award-winning teacher, and has developed and taught college classes like “Food, Health and Society” and “Botanical Medicine and Health” at Emory University. @QuaveEthnobot on Twitter and Instagram @QuaveMedicineWoman and “Foodie Pharmacology with Cassandra Quave” on Facebook About Laura Sanchez Dr. Sanchez was born and raised in Northern California. She attended Whitman College in Walla Walla, WA where she earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Chemistry (2007) and three dodgeball championships. She pursued a Ph.D. in Chemistry at the University of California, Santa Cruz after an amazing NSF Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship (2006) in Prof. Phil Crews' lab. In the Fall of 2007, she returned to UCSC to work with Prof. Roger Linington where her graduate studies encompassed two main projects including: (1) using the natural product almiramide C as a basis for structure activity relationship and mechanism of action studies; and (2) exploring the fish microbiome as a niche environment for isolating microbes. In the Fall of 2012, she continued to move south to join Prof. Pieter Dorrestein's lab at UC San Diego as an NIH K12 IRACDA Fellow. Her postdoctoral research focused on establishing methods for probing and characterizing metabolic exchanges in polymicrobial communities, specifically those associated with cheese rinds. She has been in her independent position since 2015 and strives to support a rigorous, innovative laboratory environment. @DrLauraSanchez on Twitter

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