Vol 11. Issue 8 / March 7, 2011
Snapshot: Research Associate Harry Quendler
Position: Research associate, Immunology and Microbial Science laboratory of Assistant Professor Michael Zwick, California campus.
Background: Born in Vienna, Austria, Quendler studied food science and biotechnology at the University of Applied Life Sciences, Vienna, while also spending six months in Linkoeping, Sweden, as exchange student through the European Union's Erasmus program. His thesis, written in Hermann Katinger's lab, was on HIV neutralizing antibody research. After receiving a "Diplom Ingenieur in Food Science and Biotechnology" degree (comparable to MSc), Quendler continued at the University of Applied Life Sciences to earn a PhD. The title of his doctoral thesis was "Development of an HIV-1 Vaccine Based on Liposome Technology."
Following a temporary stint as a staff scientist at Polymun Scientific, Vienna, a manufacturer of clinical-grade antibodies, Quendler journeyed to the United States to join the Scripps Research postdoctoral program.
Arrived at Scripps Research: December 2008.
Projects: In the Zwick lab, Quendler participates in research to uncover potential therapies for such infectious diseases as HIV/AIDS—an area of research that intrigues him not only due to its medical potential but also because it illustrates the complexity of the human immune system and the interplay between host and pathogen. In the lab, researchers design HIV "envelope libraries" to identify clones that exhibit increased thermostability—and thus elicit a superior immune response from the body. In other research, the lab has recently characterized a monoclonal antibody, 1F7, that exhibits neutralizing potency against HIV-1. Quendler and his colleagues also are working on isolating novel neutralizing antibodies against the virus.
Awards: Quendler was awarded the Erwin Schroedinger Fellowship by the Austrian Science Fund (FWF).
Impressions of Scripps Research: "I enjoy the international spirit here that holds a lot of opportunities. And I'm not only thinking of scientific opportunities, but also of the numerous valuable resources for career development and such that are available to the Scripps postdoc community!"
Professional and Volunteer Activities: Scripps Research Society of Fellows (SOF), 2010 treasurer and 2010-2011 president; member and current head of the San Diego chapter of Austrian Scientists and Scholars in North America (ASciNA); and member, Austrian Association of Molecular Life Sciences and Biotechnology.
As SOF president, Quendler says the group is "trying to provide a well-balanced mix of social and career-related events that will help connect people across campus as well as other research institutions in the area." He notes fulfilling the organization's mission happens with the ideas and participation of many individuals.
He strongly encourages postdocs to take advantage of the various resources Scripps Research offers, including the Career and Postdoctoral Services Office, the SOF course reimbursement program, and the recently introduced SOF Travel Award Program. He adds, "Maybe even get involved with SOF, the SOS Toastmasters, or Network for Women in Science (NWiS), and make your ideas happen!
Extracurricular Interests: Quendler enjoys floorball (a type of hockey), traveling, music (he's a DJ), and surfing.
Send comments to: mikaono[at]scripps.edu