Dr. Lena Vincent is an experimental astrobiologist studying biosignature preservation on Ocean Worlds and developing life detection strategies for future astrobiology missions. Prior to joining JPL as a NASA Postdoctoral Fellow, she obtained her doctorate from UW-Madison where she researched the chemical origins of life on Earth. She is also an accomplished science communicator and creates content to bring astrobiology and general science topics to a broad audience, primarily through social media (@astrobiolena on all platforms).
- B.Sc. in Cell Molecular Biology & Physiology, California State University-Long Beach, 2015
- Biotechnology Certificate, California State University-Long Beach, 2015
- M.Sc. in Biology, California State University-Northridge, 2017
- Ph.D. in Astrobiology & Prebiotic Chemistry, University of Wisconsin-Madison, 2022
- Chemical analysis of biosignatures and life detection
- Astrobiology of Ocean Worlds
- Prebiotic chemistry and the origin of life on Earth
- Synthetic biology and genetic engineering
- NASA Postdoctoral Fellow, Jet Propulsion Laboratory (2022-present)
- Future Investigator in NASA Earth & Space Science & Technology (FINESST) Fellow (2020-2022)
- Teaching Assistant, University of Wisconsin-Madison (2019-2020)
- Graduate Research Assistant, Wisconsin Institute of Discovery (2017-2019)
- National Institutes of Health RISE Graduate Fellow, California State University-Northridge (2015-2017)
- Bridges Stem Cell Program Fellow, California Institute of Regenerative Medicine (2014-2015)
- NASA NPP Fellowship Award, 2022
- NASA FINESST Award, 2020
- Chancellor’s Doctoral Incentive Scholarship, 2017
- California State University Graduate Equity Fellowship, 2017
- Sally Casanova Graduate Scholarship, 2017
- National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship Honorable Mention, 2017
- Vincent, L., Colón-Santos, S., Cleaves, H. J., Baum, D. A., & Maurer, S. E. (2021). The Prebiotic Kitchen: A Guide to Composing Prebiotic Soup Recipes to Test Origins of Life Hypotheses. Life, 11(11), 1221.
- Vincent, L., Berg, M., Krismer, M., Saghafi, S. T., Cosby, J., Sankari, T., Vetsigian, K., Cleaves, H.J., & Baum, D. A. (2019). Chemical ecosystem selection on mineral surfaces reveals long-term dynamics consistent with the spontaneous emergence of mutual catalysis. Life, 9(4), 80.
- Mizuuchi, R., Blokhuis, A., Vincent, L., Nghe, P., Lehman, N., & Baum, D. (2019). Mineral surfaces select for longer RNA molecules. Chemical communications, 55(14), 2090-2093.
- Quintero, D., Carrafa, J., Vincent, L., Kim, H. J., Wohlschlegel, J., & Bermudes, D. (2018). Co-Expression of a Chimeric Protease Inhibitor Secreted by a Tumor-Targeted Salmonella Protects Therapeutic Proteins from Proteolytic Degradation. Journal of microbiology and biotechnology, 28(12), 2079.
- Quintero, D., Carrafa, J., Vincent, L., & Bermudes, D. (2016). EGFR‐targeted Chimeras of Pseudomonas ToxA released into the extracellular milieu by attenuated Salmonella selectively kill tumor cells. Biotechnology and bioengineering, 113(12), 2698-2711.