Athena Kvamme

Graduate Rotation Student (2021.09 - )

I’m a first-year graduate student at the University of Iowa rotating in the He lab. I grew up in Rodeo, New Mexico and graduated from New Mexico State University with a Bachelor’s in both Genetics and Biology.

I’m currently studying the function of the N-terminal domain of a protein from a family of Hyr/Iff-like (Hil) proteins in Candida auris. Candida auris is a pathogenic fungus with resistance to common antifungal drugs and fungal adhesins are a known virulence factor in similar species. Hil8’s N-terminal domain is predicted to have a similar structure to the N-terminal domains of such adhesins. In order to test if Hil8’s N-terminal domain also functions also has a similar function, I am cloning a hybrid protein and expressing it in the model Saccharomyces cerevisiae.

In my free time I enjoy playing Dungeons & Dragons and exploring the city. I have an eight-year-old cat named Nightfall whom I adore.