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Jason Garner

I have what some might call an eclectic background. Originally a music major (yes, I wanted to be a rock star), I spent the first 17 years of my professional career as a technical advisor in the car business for Acura, BMW, Mazda and Volkswagen. Twelve years ago, my mother’s bout with cancer brought out the scientist in me.

I’ve been lucky enough to earn two degrees in cell and molecular biology and have a passion for virology and immunology. I’ve also been honored to serve as senior molecular biologist for the US Department of Defense’s Global Influenza Surveillance Program from 2006 -2011 where we made great strides in flu surveillance and vaccine development. Our model was so successful, I started my own infectious disease and molecular diagnostics consulting company, Movira Sciences & Diagnostics (still trying to get it off the ground ;) ).

I count many global scientists and biotech professionals as friends and colleagues with whom I’ve co-authored many journal articles, presentations and abstracts. I currently work as an Applied Testing Applications Scientist with QIAGEN, Inc. and serve as an infectious disease moderator for LabRoots.com. I play guitar and yes, I still want to be a rock star.

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Articles by Garner

Pyromania: An Intro to Pyrosequencing

By Jason Garner | January 10, 2013

Anyone who is involved in DNA sequencing in one form or fashion knows there are multiple ways to skin a cat: Sanger-based, next generation (NGS), and of course the new ion torrent sequencing technology. Which technology you use is usually dependent on the questions you’re trying to answer – and how fat your wallet is.…

!BAM! !POW!: How to Become a Better Job Search Street fighter – Final Round

!BAM! !POW!: How to Become a Better Job Search Street fighter – Final Round

By Jason Garner | December 12, 2012

Up till now, we’ve discussed many different ways we can prepare and execute a new career search. In the last series, I discussed getting away from internet job boards and out into the real world. Now, I’m going to challenge you and push most of you way out of your comfort zone. So, there’s XYZ…

Kits And Reagents For Mammalian Cell Transfection

Kits And Reagents For Mammalian Cell Transfection

By Jason Garner | November 16, 2012

Transfection of animal cells has proven an invaluable tool in studies of gene expression, cell behavior, cell processes and molecular genetics. Essentially, transient pores are opened within the cell’s lipid bilayer, allowing insertion of nucleic acids (DNA, RNA, siRNA, RNAi), proteins, nanoparticles, and even antibodies into the cellular milieu. Transfection can be achieved using many…

The Advanced User’s Guide to Sequencing Alignment Software (Members Only Article)

The Advanced User’s Guide to Sequencing Alignment Software (Members Only Article)

By Jason Garner | October 17, 2012

Whether you’re employing sequencing gels, Sanger-based methods, or the latest in pyrosequencing or ion torrent technologies, obtaining, manipulating and analyzing your sequences has never been easier. Depending on what your goals are, you need to understand the pros and cons of the software. There is a lot of software out there, so do you your…

The Beginners Guide to DNA Sequence Alignment

The Beginners Guide to DNA Sequence Alignment

By Jason Garner | October 15, 2012

Fortunately, those of us who have learned how to sequence know that aligning sequences is a lot easier and less time consuming than creating them. Whether you’re employing sequencing gels, Sanger-based methods, or the latest in pyrosequencing or ion torrent technologies, obtaining, manipulating and analyzing your sequences has never been easier. We’re going to take…

Book Review: "Complications: A Surgeon’s Notes on an Imperfect Science", By Atul Gawande

Book Review: “Complications: A Surgeon’s Notes on an Imperfect Science”, By Atul Gawande

By Jason Garner | August 24, 2012

At one point in my academic career, I was an eager pre-med student faced with making a difficult decision: MD or PhD? On the one hand, I was interested in orthopedics/sports medicine, and on the other hand, I wanted to be elbow-deep in disease research. One brainiac even suggested pursuing an MD/PhD: a good idea…

!BAM! !POW!: How to Become a Better Job Search Street fighter - Round Two

!BAM! !POW!: How to Become a Better Job Search Street fighter – Round Two

By Jason Garner | August 6, 2012

Thomas Edison, when asked about his failures in creating the world’s first single carbon filament incandescent lightbulb, said (and I’m paraphrasing here): “I didn’t fail, I simply found 2000 ways how NOT to make a lightbulb – and only one way to make it work”. If only most job-seekers possessed this attitude. It’s amazing the…

!BAM! !POW!: How to Become a Better Job Search Street Fighter - Part One

!BAM! !POW!: How to Become a Better Job Search Street Fighter – Part One

By Jason Garner | May 23, 2012

Career searches and job hunts are painful: answering ads, resumé tweaking, phone calls, interviews, preparation, sweat, tears, fear of rejection, etc. But it’s funny, even after investing all of this effort, the same mistakes are often made by newbies and veterans alike. In this series of articles, we’ll be talking about a variety of ways…

Film vs. Digital: A Real Western (Blotting) Showdown

Film vs. Digital: A Real Western (Blotting) Showdown

By Jason Garner | April 27, 2012

You’ve masterfully run and transferred your gel, and now it’s time to probe and quantify your protein(s). You’ve got your antibodies and ECL ready to go. Substrate – check. Film cartridge – check. Darkroom – ah yes, that magical place where night vision goggles are required to navigate a veritable minefield of potential chaos. It…

An image of test tubes to depicts how to clean a water bath.

Save the Data! Your Computer May Be Dead, but Your Hard Drive’s Heart Still Beats!

By Jason Garner | March 28, 2012

You get that familiar blue screen or an application hangs, usually one that’s been tanking your memory. No keystroke response.  The deer-in-the-headlight look on your face prompts your colleagues to ask, ‘is everything ok?’ while they secretly laugh at you. Rebooting 27 times will not save you now. Your computer has breathed its last. Even…

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