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Yang (Vicky) Luo

Vicky is a CURE fellow, where she will work with undergraduate students in our Emerging Fellows program. Here, she talks about her excitement around mentoring students in research!

Picture of Vicky in a field of tulips

Vicky is a Postdoctoral Fellow in the lab of Dr. Christine Mayr at MSKCC, where she studies protein biochemistry. This year, Vicky will be serving as a CURE Fellow, where she will be working on developing a research skills course with undergraduate students in the Emerging Fellows Program. Here, she talks about her excitement towards working with RockEDU for the first time!

Where were you before Rockefeller?

“I started my research training in chemistry as an undergraduate at Nanyang Technological University in Singapore. There, I studied the synthesis of platform molecules using biomass and green catalysts for organic reactions. I became fascinated by how biological catalysts, such as enzymes, work on specific molecules within complex cellular systems. This led to my interest in chemical biology. During my Ph.D. at Yale, I developed chemical tools to study RNA decay pathways. Now, I’m a postdoc at MSKCC, focusing on enzyme activity regulated by non-coding regions of mRNAs.”

Picture of Vicky standing beside her lab bench.












What is something you did recently that you are proud of?

“I identified the amino acid residues responsible for RNA-binding in a non-canonical RNA binding protein!”

Share one thing about science that brings you joy.

“I love it when my experiments support my bold hypotheses. However, I find it even more fascinating when they prove me wrong, as it often leads to the discovery of something even more interesting.”

Outside of your research and science, what do you do for fun?

“Outside of the lab, I enjoy exploring nature and attending the various concerts and shows available in NYC!”

Picture of Vicky at an indoor garden.

What are you most looking forward to when mentoring students with RockEDU?

“I look forward to trying out various experimental conditions and establishing a reliable reporter system with the students. I’m excited to teach them new skills and equally enthusiastic to learn about their unique perspectives on the project.”

What advice would you give to incoming students?

“Try everything and don’t be afraid of failures!”

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