“Continuous
improvement is better than delayed perfection.” Mark Twain

This is
what I learned from the remarkable scientific community in the last two
international conferences, I had the opportunity to attend.

The
International Conference on Lyme Borreliosis was held in the beautiful city of
Vienna where I also have the privilege to pursue my studies. Moreover, the
Gordon Research Seminar (GRS) and Conference on Biology of Spirochetes took
place recently in Ventura, California. Both these conferences had two things in
common, excellent science and the enthusiasm of dynamic researchers to learn,
discuss and share ideas comprehensively with each other.

As a
PhD student, taking toddler’s steps in scientific research, it was highly
inspiring to present my results in front of experts in the field. Besides, the GRS
for students organized by students
was an outstanding concept. This enabled
scientific communication in a relaxed environment between early stage and experienced
research students to exchange their know-how in spirochete research. The career
development session held during the GRS was of particular interest and included
seven scientists at
different stages in their career and from diverse employment sectors (academia
and industry). The session focussed on funding opportunities for PhD students
and postdocs to find their way in the extensive world of research and
development. During the poster and oral
sessions, I acquired knowledge about diverse biological aspects of the pathogen
as well as clinical and translational aspects of the disease. This also provided me with concepts appropriate
for my own research, leaving me with the anticipation that there is so much
more to know and decipher.

“If we knew what we were
doing, it would not be called research, would it?” Albert Einstein