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PhD student profile: Golnoush Madani

Golnoush is a biotechnologist who obtained a BSc in plant pathology (2005), and MSc in biotechnology (2008), at the Isfahan University of Technology, Iran. Before joining the SJWRI, Golnoush was lecturer and lab manager at the Isfahan University of Medical Sciences, one of the top Universities in Iran. She joined Professor Richard Cannon’s research group within the Molecular Microbiology programme of the SJWRI in October 2015 to undertake PhD studies into the structure and function of a Candida albicans membrane protein, Cdr1, which is a multi-drug efflux pump identified as a target for anti-fungal drugs. Her project aims to investigate the structure of this efflux pump, by cryo-electron microscopy. As part of her project, Golnoush is spending six months working in the laboratory of Professor Stefan Raunser at the Max Planck Institute for Molecular Physiology in Germany, with support from a grant from the German Academic Exchange Service DAAD awarded in October 2018.

Golnoush is also the PhD student representative of the Division of Health Sciences, and a member of the Graduate Research Student Liaison Committee at University of Otago. Of her experiences here as a PhD student in the SJWRI, Golnoush says:

New Zealand, and especially Dunedin, offered me plenty of amazing and outstanding opportunities to improve my strength, to experience wonderful things, and to meet many friendly and lovely people who are now close friends. From the start, I felt such relief here at Otago; the whole experience of being and studying and living in New Zealand has been very enjoyable, and I really love every moment, even if a PhD does not allow you a great deal of time for a social life, as you have to throw yourself into your work. So, I am so happy that I broke out of my comfort zone to experience a new life here and all these challenges have made me more ready for the future.

After finishing my PhD, I would love to stay in research, although moving into industry or into research management are also interesting to me. I will be looking at different opportunities to find what I really like to do and how I can use my abilities to help others.

Project title: Biochemical and structural analysis of fungal ABC membrane protein Cdr1

Supervisors: Professor R D Cannon, Dr E Lamping

Selected publications:
• Lamping E., Madani G., Lee H.J., Niimi M. and Cannon R.D. 2017. Structure-function analyses of multidrug transporters. Chapter 18, 379-406. In: Prasad R. (eds) Candida albicans: Cellular and Molecular Biology. Springer, Cham.
• Madani G., Mirlohi M., Soleimanain-Zad S., Hosseini P. and Babashahi M. 2017. Lactobacillus plantarum A7, a potential probiotic strain from infant fecal flora. J. Biol. Today’s World. 6(11): 216-223.
• Taghizadeh M., Mirlohi M., Poursina F., Madani G., khoshhali M., Bahreini N. and Ghasemian Safaei H. 2015. The influence of impact delivery mode, lactation time, infant gender, maternal age and rural or urban life on total number of Lactobacillus in breast milk. Adv. Biomed. Res. 27; 4:141.
• Ahmadzadeh F., Mirlohi M. and Madani G. 2015. Reduction of aflatoxin M1 by Some Lactic Acid Bacteria and the Effect of pH and Temperature in Phosphate Buffer Saline Solution. J. Chem. Biol. Physic. Sci. 5; 3:2748-55.
• Nasr Esfahani, M., Madani G. and Madhkhan S. 2014. A novel method of anal fissure laser surgery: A pilot study. Lasers Med. Sci. 30(6): 1711-7.
• Shamloo E., Jalali M., Mirlohi M. and Madani G. 2014. Prevalence of Listeria species in raw milk and traditional dairy products. Int. J. Environ. Health Eng. 4:1.
• Fathi M., Mirlohi M., Varshosaz J. and Madani G. 2013. Novel caffeic acid nanocarrier: Production, characterization and release modeling. J. Nanomaterials (Volume 2013), Article ID 434632.
• Hosseini P., Bahar M., Madani G. and Zirak L. 2011. Molecular Characterization of a Phytoplasma Associated with Potato Purple Top Disease in Iran. J. Phytopathol 159(4): 241-246.

Recent conferences:
• Madani G., Lamping E., Hall N., Mitra A. and Cannon R.D. 2018. Expression and purification of Candida albicans multidrug efflux pump Cdr1 for structural studies. ABC2018 conference, 6-12 March 2018, Innsbruck, Austria (Poster).
• Madani G., Lamping E. and Cannon R.D. 2017. Purification of Cdr1 as a first step to overcome drug resistant Candida infections. SJWRI research day, 5th September 2017, Dunedin, New Zealand (Oral Presentation).
• Madani G., Lamping E., Lee H.J. and Cannon R.D. 2016. Contribution of cysteine residues to Candida albicans Cdr1 multidrug efflux pump expression and function. NZMS conference, 14-17 November 2016, Christchurch, New Zealand (Poster).
• Madani G., Lamping E., Lee H.J. and Cannon R.D. 2016. Role of cysteine residues in Candida albicans Cdr1p efflux pump expression and function. SJWRI research day symposium, 1-2 September 2016, Dunedin, New Zealand (Oral Presentation).

• DAAD short-term research grant
• FULL registration fee waiver grant to attend the ABC2018 Meeting in Innsbruck
• Grant-in-aid to attend the annual New Zealand Microbiological Society (NZMS) conference in Christchurch
• University of Otago Doctoral Scholarship
• Top Student of the year award