Prnay is a recent graduate of a B.S. degree in Neuroscience from Northeastern University in Boston, MA, USA. He has had a very wide range of intensive work experiences, including molecular biology, teaching, program organization, and curriculum development that have added professional expertise to his degree.
As a full-time Research Assistant at Boston Children’s Hospital, he studied the genetics surrounding disorders of cortical development, such as autism, epilepsy, and microcephaly. He utilized next-generation technologies such as fluorescence-activated cell sorting (FACS) and multiple displacement amplification (MDA) to perform single-cell whole-genome sequencing of human brain tissue, in hopes to identify new pathogenic mutations behind neurodevelopmental disease, while also making sense of the large amounts of single-nucleotide variants (SNVs) that exist in the healthy brain. Additionally, he designed and optimized 7 digital-droplet PCR (ddPCR) assays for CNV quantification, and performed genotyping, sectioning, and ICC for transgenic models.
In a previous placement at Harvard Medical School, he performed virtual reconstruction, annotation, and mapping of a subset of 100 neurons within electron microscopy data of D. melanogaster olfactory cortex in order to create a functional, connectomic map of the brain.
Outside of the laboratory, he ran a summer program for high school students at Harvard Medical School. At the National Student Leadership Conference, he crafted a curriculum to teach them introductory college-level psychology and neuroscience. Within the 9 days of the program, the students were able to receive a thorough understanding of introductory psychology and neuroscience topics that many their age do not have access to until their undergraduate education such as psychopharmacology, neuroimmunology, and brain-microbiome interactions. He was praised for single-handedly creating several new aspects of the program, now codified into permanent curriculum for future years.
He spent the years of 2016-2018 pursuing advanced, full-time classical dance training in India. Training in an extremely complex and philosophically intensive art form has honed his skills of discipline, insight, and perception, which has further enhanced his scientific approach. His cross-training as both a scientist and an artist allows him to develop insights and connections across scientific areas that are traditionally siloed. His time in India has made him extremely passionate about what he believes to be the future of human health: driving fearless innovation by relying on a comprehensive view of the body, such as investigating diet-microbiome interactions and neuroinflammation as a pathology for diseases like autism and depression, using the latest biological tools.
Prnay currently works as a Research Associate at Gritstone Oncology, using molecular genetics and next-generation sequencing to investigate personalized cancer immunotherapies.