Kinga Fanni Toth
ESDR: What was the purpose of your visit?
Kinga Fanni Toth: I visited the team of Dr. Jacob D. Wikström at the Karolinska Institutet in Stockholm. I wanted to have experience by working outside of Hungary in another laboratory, to learn new techniques, to improve my research skills, as well as my English knowledge, and to study certain aspects of the mitochondrial biology of the human skin. The ESDR Skin Science Travel Award provided an excellent opportunity to see and experience how another research laboratory works in another country, and to meet people with whom I share the same research interest.
ESDR: How was the experience of your visit and what key things did you take back to your department?
Kinga Fanni Toth: I enjoyed my 4 weeks in the Center for Molecular Medicine of Karolinska Institutet in an international environment. I mastered the use of several devices, and learnt how to measure various parameters of mitochondrial activity. Of great importance, our experiments shed light to a previously unknown role of CB1 cannabinoid receptors in regulating biology of human keratinocytes, which deserves further in depth exploration. Thus, we will definitely follow this line in the coming months. Moreover, I also had the chance to get an insight into the investigation of wound healing, which is the key research area of the host laboratory.
ESDR: What is your research focus over the coming year?
Kinga Fanni Toth: This is the last year of my Ph.D. studies, therefore, my most important tasks are going to be to write and defend my thesis. Besides this, I will continue the exploration of the role of CB1 in cutaneous mitochondrial biology, and I will also contribute to other ongoing projects aiming to assess the role of “non-classical” cannabinoid signaling in the (patho)physiology of human sebaceous glands.
ESDR: Any other thoughts you wish to share?
Kinga Fanni Toth: That was my first time in a Scandinavian country; therefore, it was a great change to come here after the warm summer in Hungary. Stockholm is a windy and (at least with the Hungarian standards) cold, but mostly sunny city, full of nice and helpful people from all over the world. I am very happy that in my free time, I could visit some sights of Stockholm e.g. the monument ship, Vasa, which had sunk in the 17th century, Gamla Stan with Nobel Prize Museum, and the Royal Palace in Drottningholm, which all made a great impression on me. It is very important that besides the work, I got some new friends. All the members of the team were very friendly. During the days, we had lunch together and in the afternoons we kept the traditional Swedish FIKA as well, which made me feel to be a member of the team; I am very grateful for their hospitality.