Mollie Black was inspired to pursue a career in research during a high school zoology class. There, she learned about zoonotic diseases and the importance of global health in preventing disease outbreaks. Her early education in zoonotic diseases galvanized her to pursue an animal science degree at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. During her studies, she enjoyed working for the Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC) and gained foundational experience in Dr. Oudessa Kerro Dego’s lab studying dairy cow mastitis vaccines.
After graduating in 2020, Black worked on the administrative side of clinical research. While she enjoyed learning a different side of research, she missed the independence and creativity of the laboratory. To remedy this, Black became part of the inaugural cohort of Sarafan ChEM-H/IMA Postbaccalaureate Research Fellows at Stanford University. She worked in Ansu Satpathy’s lab, studying the behavior of memory CD8 T-cell clones and the mechanisms that produce the most effective clones. This experience introduced her to the field of immunology and further confirmed that a Ph.D. was the next step in her career. Currently, Black is interested in studying host responses to pathogens in infectious and zoonotic diseases. During her Ph.D., she hopes to explore topics relating to global public health and bring awareness to health inequities.
Hometown: Cincinnati, OH
Daniel B, Yost KE, Hsiung S, Sandor K, Xia Y, Qi Y, Hiam-Galvez KJ, Black M, Raposo C, Shi Q, Meier SL, Belk JA, Giles JR, Wherry JE, Chang HY, Egawa T, Satpathy AT. “Divergent clonal differentiation trajectories of T cell exhaustion.” Nat Immunol (2022). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41590-022-01337-5.