There’s more to micro life: thanks and farewell Jennifer Tsang

Mid-February saw us welcome Jennifer Tsang (@jw_tsang), microbiologist and postdoctoral research fellow at the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center and Harvard Medical School.

Jennifer began with some discussions on the dire problem of antibiotic resistance, including some possible future strategies for combatting this problem.

There was also plenty of interesting info about the role that microbes play in our food, particularly kefir and sourdough…

…uh, let’s stick with the mini cauliflower description kthx.

And of course it was Valentines day so…


We were also treated to a few days of live tweeting at the AAAS Meeting, which was a great real time taste of the world’s largest scientific conference.

Jennifer graciously accepted our offer of a post-curation interview, and her answers are below.

In general terms, how did you find your week as a curator?

It was a great week, but exhausting! I enjoyed talking to the diverse audience that follow Real Scientists and so glad I was able to participate.

It can be a shock talking to so many. Did you find the sudden rush of interactions (good and bad) daunting?

Yes, at first it was very overwhelming keeping track of all the responses and fitting them into what I wanted to talk about, particularly if I had already moved on to a new topic on the next day. Managing the account kind of felt like it was taking over my life by the end of the week!

What were the highlights? Were there any lowlights?

I had set up a poll about the followers background and very excited to see that a large percentage of Real Scientist followers were not scientists! I loved how everyone was so enthusiastic about the science (particularly with antimicrobial resistance and food microbiology).

Did you have a plan? If so, did you stick to it?

Vaguely, I had a list of topics. At the first couple days, I talked about my work on antimicrobial resistance and the field in general. I then moved on to other topics I found interesting in microbiology (mainly food microbiology) and talked about a cool book I had recently read about how trees communicate with one another. Trees are not my area of expertise so I was a little intimidated talking about something I was thought was very fascinating but did not know too much about. For the last few days, I was at the AAAS meeting so I live tweeted the sessions I went to. It was my first time live-tweeting so I felt a little frantic at the meeting. ☺

Do you have any tips or advice for future RS curators?

I would be careful to make sure that each tweet can stand alone by itself. I had been called out for saying things that without the previous tweet, was confusing or had the wrong connotation or meaning. With that said, I did not have any negative interactions in my week curating for RS.

What other people or accounts should people follow if they enjoyed your tweets this week?


Thanks once again Jennifer from all of us here at RealScientists HQ. If you missed anything from her week, the tweets are all collated at the following link.


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