Leslimar Rios Colon, PhD

Leslimar Rios Colon, PhD

Postdoctoral Researcher
North Carolina Central University
Durham, North Carolina

Abstract 5822. Leptin modulated microRNA-628-5p targets Jagged1 and inhibits prostate cancer hallmarks.

What are your long-term career objectives? 

My long-term research goals are to establish an independent research career focused on improving bench-to-bedside therapeutics and identifying societal and personal risk factors that lead to poor disease outcomes, particularly in underserved populations. My other goal is to help train and recruit future scientists interested in addressing underserved populations’ issues to diversify the scientific community. 

Please share information about how the COVID-19 pandemic has impacted your research over the last two years. 

As a researcher and a mother, the COVID-19 pandemic brought a new set of challenges and opportunities to reinvent myself as a scientist. Like many other parents, the challenges of balancing our careers and also providing appropriate care for our children were amplified, requiring a lot of patience and creativity to address each issue. My research was impacted for some time, especially when we were on lockdown and had to follow strict social distancing guidelines. However, during this period, I have learned to work more efficiently utilizing the resources available to continue my work either on the bench or remotely. For example, when my daughter had to quarantine due to possible exposure, I used that time to work on several collaborations that led to publications on different topics. At this moment, we are close to completing several projects, even with the challenges that we had to overcome.