Matt writes:

Dear Immu-Knowledge-ists,

I have listened to TWIV for about two years, and nearly wrote in last year after my virology final exam, but never got around to sending it. In that draft I had written how I wished that there was an immunology podcast I could listen to, because immunology is just about the coolest subject out there. In fact, I would specifically keep an eye out for any TWIV episodes that were related to immunology. I’m so excited for this podcast, and am eagerly awaiting episode 3. I am in my last semester as an undergrad at the University of Wisconsin and actually just submitted my applications for pursuing my PhD in immunology! Thus, I look forward to hearing from Steph’s grad student perspective.

I had a few thoughts in response to the first two great episodes. Firstly, I was glad that the proposed tax plan was a point of discussion. It’s my understanding that the Senate tax bill does not tax tuition wavers, while the House bill does (feel free to correct me, I’m not sure if that is accurate.) Regardless, I thought it was a rather dark coincidence grad school deadlines were 1-2 days before the bill was passed. I’m sure that like me, many other prospective grad students had the tax bill weighing heavily in their minds. I am also curious if there were prospective applicants that decided to not pursue grad school in light of this bill. Either way, I appreciate you all voicing your concerns for the future generations of scientists, and all those others whose lives will be affected by this bill.

On a lighter note, I was thrilled to hear Cindy bring up CAR T cells during the first episode. Immunotherapy is new and exciting field, and is actually what I hope to specialize in during graduate school. The first time I heard about CAR T cells I was blown away, which is the natural response to learning that we can engineer a T cell response-how cool is that?! I hope future episodes can discuss multiple types of immunotherapy, like adoptive cell transfer, costimulatory blockades and cancer vaccines. I think discussing PD-1/PD-L1 would be very beneficial even for non-scientists in the audience. I have been seeing more and more commercials for anti-PDL1 drugs, and think that it is important the general public has an understanding of how these therapies work.

Thank you all in advance, and I look forward to a great podcast!


Courtney writes:

Greetings from Omaha, Nebraska

I don’t know if ya’ll are doing the weather, but it is a chilly 22 degrees Fahrenheit here. I’ll admit I’m a warm weather gal, nearly 60 in December makes me feel uneasy.

I am enjoying your latest episode in Immune. I haven’t completed it, but I do have a question.

Do you think seasonality has a large impact upon lymphocytes rhythms?

Stay Excellent,

Justin writes:

Waited until episode 2 to say this but please keep up the great podcast.

If you find the time, as an analytical chemist I’d love to hear more about analytical techniques you use, thanks.