Taylor Vensko

Taylor Vensko

IM Ph.D. Student



Taylor Vensko

Position Title

First year student in the IM Ph.D. program. 


Biochemistry and Molecular Biology 
Advisor: Dr. Philip Pellett


B.S. in Molecular Biology and Biotechnology from University of Michigan-Flint

Office Location

6225 SH


My M.S. thesis research focuses on how infection by Human Cytomegalovirus (HCMV) induces reorganization of the Endocytic Recycling Compartment (ERC) to form the cytoplasmic virion assembly compartment (cVAC).

Research Focus

Two-dimensional (2D)cell cultures have shown that HCMV causes a enlarged and bent nuclear phenotype, as well as a ring composed of tubular structures derived from the Golgi and trans-Golgi with a number of endocytic veiscles inside. My aim is to visualize the cVAC in a three-dimensional (3D) model to provide more insight on this phenotype in an environment that more closely resembles human tissues. To study this, I am developing three-dimensional spheroid cell culture model based on a liquid overlay spheroid cell culture system that demonstrates the formation of a fibroblast micro-tumor in a non-adherent vessel. Combining three-dimensional cell culture, histological processing, immunofluorescent microscopy, and three-dimensional computational reconstructions, this system will provide insight to how HCMV influences cytoplasmic morphology and cell-to-cell interactions in an environment that more closely mimics human tissues.

← Return to listing