Today we highlight the International Day of Women and Girls in Science!
"Just when you think you’re approaching the mountain top, you realize that your mind deceived you, and that you have to push through a little bit longer."
To mark this day, we asked a female scientist from the incubator to reflect on her experiences and give some advice to girls interested in science.
Meet Liza Tchapanova – Founder and CEO of TRACKPAW Scientific.
Liza has an MSc in biomedicine from Lund University. She has interdisciplinary experience with commercializing and leading preclinical in vivo studies in both an industrial and an academic setting. Liza has a wide scientific background in the fields of immunobiology, neurodegenerative diseases and oncology and she has an intricate understanding of what the market lacks within each disease field.
What does it mean to you to be a scientist?
To me, being a scientist means having the responsibility of harboring and conveying vital knowledge which might be part of tomorrow’s medicines. It means to finding a disease you wish there was a cure for, and finding an edge you’re really passionate about, a signaling pathway, a molecule or protein that might have an impact on said disease.
Have you found that there are some unexpected obstacles?
I realized quite quickly that science constitutes of 99% failure and 1% success. Just as you think you are reaching a conclusion, you receive an unexpected result from some experiment you spent weeks on, or stumble across an error which makes you question the whole experimental protocol you were following. And science is ever changing. What you conclude to be true today, someone else might prove wrong tomorrow. That’s why I believe most research papers end with ‘’more studies need to be performed on the subject…’’ or ‘’these results indicate x, y and z…’’. It’s difficult at times, however you realize that there’s so much yet to be discovered in this world, and that potential pay-off is well worth it.
What would be your advice for a girl really interested in Science?
It is a tough climate, and a highly competitive one. However, my best advice is to keep an open mind, and to always expect and embrace the unknown. I think that all you need to succeed is curiosity, a bit of luck and a strong desire of making an impact in the world. Few professions have such a short path to global recognition, and your discovery might help the development of better global health.
About Trackpaw Scientific
They have developed a method to reduce the number of rodents needed in preclinical studies to develop new drugs while increase the well-being of the animals used.