Words Leticia Lives By:“If you don’t try, you will never know”
Leticia’s journey to Berkeley Lab
Leticia grew up in Pamplona, a small town in the North of Spain where she obtained her B.S. in Chemistry from the University of Navarra in 2011. She did her M.S. in Nanoscience and Nanotechnology at the University of Barcelona (Spain) where she dug into molecular magnetism and its application in quantum computing. She then pursued a joint Ph.D. degree in synthetic and supramolecular chemistry at the University of Jyvaskyla (Finland) and the University of Strasbourg (France).
…Our local products for the next generation of molecular radiotherapy
In June 2017, Leticia joined Berkeley Lab to work with some of the most exotic chemical elements, the actinides; some of them were discovered here at the Lab, our local products! Radiotherapy is increasingly used to treat cancer. However, the current techniques destroyed not only the cancer cells but also healthy ones, which can damage the patient. Leticia’s research aims to provide a new molecule for radiotherapy, which will directly and only interact with the cancer cells. To do so, she designs and synthesizes a bi-functional molecule that can host on one side the radionuclide and on the other one a targeting vehicle, which will recognize the cancer cell and attach to it. As an artist, Leticia enjoys creating new molecules, “it’s a piece of art” she said!
But the best, she confessed, is to know that her research will potentially have a huge impact on humanity and give hope and joy to many human beings across the World.
What’re her next steps?
For this girl born and raised in a small city in Spain, moving to California was mind-blowing. She started a new world-class research which allows her to explore pathways that are different from her fundamental science background. She would like to continue working in research in industry or academia and contribute to the advances in Medicine.
Leticia joined BLPA as a board member in 2018. She then realizes how much BLPA impacts and supports the postdoc community. Her passion to gather people, organize activities, have fun while working hard and leadership led her to become BLPA co-chair.
Advice for postdocs?
Berkeley Lab is a very unique place where you will find people from different backgrounds, cultures, and countries. Don’t miss the tremendous opportunity to get to know a little piece of the World without moving!
Think big, if there is any place where you will make it happens, it is here!