Brittany D.K. Gratreak studied microbiology and molecular biology at Portland State University (Portland, OR) and graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Biology in 2016. As an undergraduate, she served as the president of the Neuroscience Club and built a strong hub for undergraduate neuroscience in the absence of a neuroscience major. She also launched an honors research thesis in extreme virology under the mentorship of Dr. Kenneth Stedman in the Center for Life in Extreme Environments. Her work focused on characterizing virus genome mutations that could expand host range or affect host/virus interactions in a virus of extremophile archaea. She joined Dr. David Ellison's lab in May 2017, completely new to the field of nephrology and hypertension. However, her scientific curiosity has never been restricted to a single field. Britt aspires to hone her science communication skills and lab techniques to join an M.D./Ph.D. program and become a physician-scientist focused on traumatic brain injury outcomes.
Britt assists with a number of projects. Currently, she uses in vitro cell lines to explore regulation of Cullin-3-Ring-Ligases and utilizes animal models to better understand drug-induced kidney damage and other physiological changes seen in human patients after transplant. Aside from contributing to research, she manages everything from requisitions, cooking up chemicals/maintaining stock, managing hazardous chemicals to make sure both colleagues and the environment are well-protected, and more. (she also built this website! TWICE!)
In July 2019, Britt will pursue her dreams as part of the M.D./Ph.D. program in the University of Arizona.
Britt studies the renal effects of tacrolimus in vivo and assists with in vitro cell projects related to the regulation of Cullin-3-Ring-Ligases.