Student Highlights: Annie Walgren


Class:  Senior

Major:  Microbiology / Molecular Biology

My name is Annie Walgren and I am from Laramie, WY. I am a senior at the University of Wyoming studying Microbiology and Molecular Biology. I discovered my passion for research while at an internship at Boise State University, where I was able to aid in the creation of a vaccine for staphylococcus aureus mastitis in cows.

I recently completed another summer internship at the University of Pittsburgh where I worked at the Hillman Cancer Center. My research there focused on the impact of cancer treatments on the development of tertiary lymphoid structures in pancreatic cancer. I am also fortunate to work in Dr. Boothby’s lab here at the University of Wyoming. When I am not in the lab, I enjoy spending time with my cats, baking, and traveling.


In the Wyoming Water Bear Lab, my research focuses on the unique ability of tardigrades to survive in extreme environments. Tardigrades are microscopic animals that are incredibly resilient. Specifically, we are interested in how tardigrades are able to survive desiccation—or a loss of water—in their cells. We know that this ability is mediated in part by a unique group of proteins without a stable 3D structure. My project looks to understand how these proteins are influenced by and interact with their chemical environment.


Every year, we award fellowships to graduate and undergraduate students attending the University of Wyoming or one of Wyoming’s community colleges in order to provide them with the opportunity to do “real” research. Occasionally, we feature one of these students and their research on this blog. For more information about our student fellowships, visit our College Programs page.