Anna Kreymer '12 Is On the Path
Anna is a delightful individual who displays the essential characteristics of a budding young academician. . . intelligence with an understanding of its practical application; intellectual curiosity and the drive to pursue an answer; and an engaging and vivacious personality complemented by a strong commitment to community."
--Dr. Susan Kinder Haake, Professor of Periodontics, UCLA School of Dentistry
About my path to academic dentistry
I was born in Kiev, Ukraine and came to the United States in
1991. I attended UCSB and transferred to UCLA my sophomore
year. I received my B.S. in Psychobiology from UCLA in
2005. I took a year off to work as a dental assistant and then
decided to go back to school. I received my M.S. in oral biology
from UCLA in 2009. I am currently in my second year of a
seven-year DDS/PhD program at the UCLA School of Dentistry. I am
fortunate to be supported in my studies by the T32 training grant
awarded through the National Institutes of Health.
Dr. Susan Kinder Haake is my research mentor. It was somewhat luck that I started working with her. She was looking for a student for a project and I was looking for a lab in which to do my master’s degree research. I began working on her project almost immediately after we met. I am very fortunate to be able to continue working in Dr. Haake's lab as I conduct my Ph.D. research as well.
While the T32 training grant provides me with the research support
that is needed to grow my career, the R25 program is essential in
teaching me the practical knowledge that is needed in order to become a
successful academician. I think the R25 program has allowed me to
see how important it is to look at all aspects of my future career
beyond just the laboratory. It has made me think about how to
become an effective educator and mentor. The opportunity to learn
from the top faculty at UCLA has made me appreciate the many different
ingredients that go into becoming a successful researcher, clinician
My future goals involve performing the wide spectrum of duties to which I am being exposed in my training program. I hope to one day be able to treat patients, conduct research, and teach dental students. I believe that the combination of these aspirations will allows me to become a better clinician, researcher, and educator by allowing me to gain many different perspectives on any given issue.
About my research
The subspeciation of F. nucleatum strains
The anaerobic bacterium Fusobacterium nucleatum (Fn) is a common isolate from periodontal infections and is associated with significant systemic infections. The species is diverse, with 3-4 recognized subspecies that possess distinct phenotypic properties. Clarification of the role of Fn subspecies in health and disease requires accurate subspecies determination. Improved sequencing techniques have facilitated phylogenetic classification based on genotype rather than phenotype, but there is little information on the subspeciation of Fn strains based on genotypic data. The 16S rDNA is typically used for classification, however the differences between closely related strains in the 16S sequence may be a little as 2-3 bp per 100 bp. The purpose of this investigation was to assess the phylogenetic classification of Fn subspecies on the basis of selected conserved loci in comparison to 16S rDNA. DNA from the 16S rDNA gene, the gyrB gene and the 16S-23S intergenic region (IGR) was amplified from chromosomal DNA preparations of 25 Fn strains. The amplicons were purified, directly sequenced, and the compiled sequences used to generate phylogenetic trees. The gyrB sequence proved to be a reliable target for subspeciation of the strains tested with 4-7bp per 100 bp discrimination. Phylogenetic analysis showed similar groupings when comparing the 16S rDNA and gyrB sequences. The IGR sequence using this approach of direct amplicon sequencing was not useful. The gyrB sequence of Fn demonstrates greater sequence diversity as compared to the 16S rDNA, and may provide improved discrimination between closely related Fn subspecies. Classification based on the gyrB sequence may enable a better understanding of the role a particular subspecies plays in health and disease.