After six working weeks of my two month internship at the Centre for Skin Research in Gothenburg, I want to report about this time.
First of all, I would like to shortly introduce my employer. The Centre for Skin Research is an interdisciplinary collaboration of different scientific fields, e.g. dermatochemistry, physical and medicinal chemistry and pharmacy.
I am working at the Biomedicinal Photonics research group. They are investigating the topical drug delivery and distribution of drug substances in human skin. The drug substances are fluorescence labeled and are detectable with a two-photon microscopy.
After two weeks of familiarization with security advices, introductions to the laboratories and the work with human skin and a lot of reading, I started with my research project. This is the first time that I am planning and implementing a project on my own and I felt a little bit uncertain before, but I was challenged and excited as well. In my project, I am investigating the diffusion of a drug delivery system in human skin. Therefore, the skin samples are attached in a Diffusion Cell and exposed to the test substance. Afterwards, the samples are prepared for the investigations with two-photon microscopy. On the picture you can see a skin sample, a skin sample in the Diffusion Cell exposed to a test substance on the top and a reprocessed skin sample in an imaging chamber for the two-photon microscopy.
I am enjoying best support from my supervisor. I always have the possibility to speak with my supervisor or with group members about my project. Furthermore, there are weekly meetings for group discussions, presentations and individual support.
Recently, I also had the possibility to study the theoretical background in the field of skin research. I attended with my research group the Karlberg symposium and some lectures of a course „Looking skin deep- from molecules to patient“ about skin research with well-renowned speakers. This was a unique and important experience for me. I obtained new knowledge and suggestions. I also established contacts at the lunch and the dinner.
The atmosphere at work is harmonic and friendly. Good coexistence and teamwork is important and is cared by rituals like meetings of the whole Centre or fika with Swedish cake and coffee. The hierarchies are flat compared to my experience in Germany and even as a student intern I am a full member of the research group.
In conclusion, my initial uncertainty was without any basis. I am really enjoying the working time. Until now, I gained so many important and interesting insights for my personal and professional development. I am feeling thankful for this opportunity and the experience. Even more am I looking forward to the results of my experiments!