Jill Muhling

I have a PhD in Molecular Virology from the University of Western Australia and have worked as a postdoc at research labs in Australia and the USA. I currently work as a Senior Scientist in the biotechnology industry in Cambridge Massachusetts. My main area of expertise is gene therapy and viral vectors, particularly vector production using different platforms.

Articles by Jill Muhling

How to Get a Scientific Research Job in the US (If You Are Coming from Elsewhere)

How to Get a Scientific Research Job in the US (If You Are Coming from Elsewhere)

Growing up in Australia, I remember a common phrase: ‘only in America’. Sometimes this was in reference to bizarre cultural events or phenomena but it was generally accepted that the USA was an extraordinary place, where everything was bigger, brighter, and more outrageous. America has fostered a culture of big ideas and innovation, partly because…

Outsourcing Research:  Should Your Experiment Spend Some Time Away from You?

Outsourcing Research: Should Your Experiment Spend Some Time Away from You?

As a researcher, it’s satisfying to manage your own projects and do the bench work yourself. After all, if you don’t have experience with a technique, you’re usually expected to figure it out (with or without direct supervision). In some situations, dealing with difficult molecular techniques is simply part of the job description. The scientific…

Viral Vector Production: Myths & Misconceptions

Viral Vector Production: Myths & Misconceptions

Viral vector production is a worthwhile skill that can be made even easier with a few tips and tricks. In general, transfection of multiple plasmids into a producer cell line results in infectious, non-replicative virus. However, it is important to ensure that your vector preparation is efficient, giving your experiments the best chance of success….

AAV Production Part II: Virus Purification

AAV Production Part II: Virus Purification

In Part I of AAV Production, I described how to produce crude (non-purified) AAV. In this article, I am going to tell you how to purify that crude prep. Virus purification is usually done by gradient ultracentrifugation. Two common methods involve gradients made from increasing concentrations of cesium chloride or iodixanol. A cesium chloride prep…

AAV Production Part I: Tips for Setting Up

AAV Production Part I: Tips for Setting Up

What is Adeno-Associated Virus? Adeno-associated virus (AAV) is a popular gene therapy vector. Different AAV serotypes infect different cell and tissue types with varying efficiency, so it’s a good idea to select the serotype most relevant to your work. The most commonly used AAV serotypes are 1, 2, 5, 6, 8, 9 and DJ, although…

How to Effectively Organize a Research Lab

How to Effectively Organize a Research Lab

An academic lab is a unique working environment. Lab members are expected to take responsibility for their own research projects and perform the work quickly and efficiently. However, unlike an industrial or corporate setting, there are often no clearly defined management structures. This means that when it comes to communal equipment, reagents and resources, individual…

Want to Increase Your Lentiviral Titers?  Focus on Your 293T Cells

Want to Increase Your Lentiviral Titers? Focus on Your 293T Cells

Producing lentiviral or retroviral vectors is theoretically fairly straightforward. However, anyone new to viral vector work is usually confronted with vast amounts of confusing information. It seems that anyone who has ever made a lentivirus has their own protocols and is adamant that their method is the best one to follow. In reality, there are…