Jake Newland


If DNA could Fly

I'm from: Hobart
Current Location: Hobart
Position: PhD Candidate, Menzies Institute for Medical Research, UTAS
Field of research/work: Neuroscience
YTS Years: 2021 2022 2023

Jake's Notable career moments

  • Loved science as a kid and wanted to be a zoologist.

  • Gained work experience in a chemistry lab.

  • Competed in a neuroscience competition in high school.

  • Started a degree in medical research at university.

  • Joined a group of scientists studying how the brain develops.

  • Still with that group doing my PhD.

About Jake Newland

Did you know you are made of acid?! Well organised acid, that’s actually your DNA. DNA is how your body knows how to be you. Little parts of your body, called cells, read DNA like a book, and like a book DNA can be read in different ways. DNA could have full stops, be scribbled out, or the pages could even be stuck together or ripped out! There’s different ways of reading DNA to let your body do different things in different places. I look at how different ways of reading DNA change how your cells grow and change in your body. But I also look at how your DNA can be read wrong sometimes. To do this I study flies, who are full of DNA just like you and me!

I first got interested in science when I was your age (I can’t see you right now so I don’t know what age you are but it’s still true, every grade and every year gives another chance to get interested in science). Whether its learning about the planets in primary school or learning about DNA at University there’s always something new and exciting to learn about science. After year 12 I was eager to learn more which lead me to University, and from there I went to medical research where I hope to discover ways to improve people’s lives.

When I’m not exploring DNA, I play hockey and spend time with my friends. And also get excited when I see a fly outside of the lab.