Velin Sequeira

Though I am from Mangalore, a small coastal village in the south of India, I was born and brought up in Dubai. During my schooling, I loved biology, chemistry and mathematics, and thus pursued an engineering bachelor degree in Biotechnology. My coursework and international research internships in UK and Australia instilled in me a curiosity of to understand molecular and cellular processes. Therefore, I enrolled in a Master degree on Molecular Medicine at Uppsala University, Sweden.
The experience of living in a beautiful student town was truly amazing where I met people from all over the world and thus, got a glimpse of Scandinavian life! Here, I also got opportunities to work on topics like vascular development and stem cell biology. For my master thesis, I worked on understanding how epigenetic dysfunction underlies a neurodevelopmental disorder using an induced pluripotent stem cell model. While working on this project, I got fascinated by how several factors allow a single cell to develop into a fully functional developed organism. As one of the key factors are epigenetic modifications and chromatin structure, I decided to work on stem cell epigenetics during my PhD. During my master thesis, I also realized the growing importance of incorporating different genomic and proteomic technologies into stem cell biology research. Therefore, I am fortuitous to join Michiel Vermeulen’s Lab at Radboud University, Nijmegen, Netherlands for my PhD. While being specialized in proteomics, the lab utilizes an integrative omics approach to answer questions like gene expression regulation and intestinal stem cell differentiation. My project will be focused on identifying proteins that bind to methylated and other oxidative derivatives in stem cells employing an in-house developed quantitative mass spectrometry. Over the four years, I hope to learn several experimental and bioinformatics skills which will create a strong foundation to pursue my interests in cell-fate dynamics. I am also fortunate to be part of the EpiSyStem ITN, a Marie Curie training network focused on stem cell epigenomics. One of the key advantages of being a part of an ITN are the three workshops per year designed to inculcate in us useful experimental and other transferable skills and to develop an academic and industrial  network.  The opportunity to go for a secondment (short visit to another lab in the network) is also an exciting opportunity to expand our skill sets and obtain new perspectives. On the personal front, perks of being part of an ITN are enjoying wonderful trips to different beautiful locations with fellow PhD students!
Music I listen: Bollywood music
Books I read: Anything I find interesting
How do I spend my spare time? Cooking, listening music, watching TV or reading tweets
Why am I in science? Because of my curiosity to understand nature and life
How do I start my day? Tea
My home page in my browser? Google