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St Gabriel’s

St Gabriel’s

Creating Vaccines Talk

On 27 November, Christine Rollier, Senior Research Scientist, in Vaccinology at the Oxford Vaccine Group came in to talk with St Gabriel’s Senior School pupils about vaccine immunology.  She set the scene by talking about the immune system and progressed to pre-clinical vaccine development and her career as a research scientist.

The girls learned about exposure to bacteria in young infants and the role of the immune system in the elderly, who's immune systems weaken with age.  She also explained how different vaccines are germane at different stages in life and how adjuvants allow the immune system to become stimulated to create immunity. 

Christine’s role focuses on pre-clinical molecular structures for vaccines, and she is heavily involved in research and the technical ideas required to develop proof of concept and allow investment.   She manages a team of scientists and stressed the importance of resilience and perseverance in scientific research.

Natalie, Year 13 asked Christine what she studied as part of her PhD Research?

I studied Biochemistry and obtained a PhD at the University of Lyon in 2000 my PhD research focused on DNA immunisation as a therapeutic approach against chronic Hepatitis B Virus infection.   I was extensively in the laboratory testing and it required a lot of perseverance, but was very enjoyable too.   For those interested in becoming a Research Scientist, it is key to study Biology and Chemistry at University and gain your PhD.