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Profile: Jorin Riexinger

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Jorin Riexinger (2020, DPhil Biology)

Jorin is doing a DPhil in Biology at Univ. He is also a member of Oxford University Judo Club and Oxford University Ski and Snowboard Club Men’s Blues teams. Jorin received a BSc in Biomimetics from Westphalian University in 2017. Then, he graduated with an MSc in Neuroscience from the University of Freiburg in 2020, focusing on computational neuroscience and neurotechnology.

Why did you decide to do a DPhil?
During my master’s degree, I got fascinated by the idea of bioprinters and their potential to reliably position single cells at particular locations with high precision in 3D. In particular, a 3D droplet printing technology developed here at the University of Oxford caught my attention. The 3D droplet printer is unique in that it prints cell-like compartments at the highest precision and in various shapes and morphologies. So, it isn’t limited to the assembly of 3D tissues that may be composed of multiple cell types but also allows for the bottom-up assembly of synthetic tissues. Having worked with the technology throughout my DPhil, I am still get amazed by the simplicity and beauty of the underlying idea.

How is your DPhil research going?
Recently, I’ve found some interesting phenomena that I would like to understand more in depth and pursue some related opportunities. In general, I would argue that every experiment leads to new insights – even if that means you may have to go back one step, or two. I find it exciting to have the freedom of testing ideas by generating data that may prove or disprove a certain hypothesis. I think trying to find answers to scientific questions is fascinating and I look forward to exploring some more ideas and tackling upcoming challenges.

How have you changed since starting at Univ?
My time at Univ has been one of the most influential in many different ways. Firstly, I am grateful for all perspectives, ideas, and thoughts not only around college, but throughout the academic environment that allowed me to shape my own values.

3 people smiling and having funI believe I’ve got to know myself a bit better by reflecting carefully and understanding my own feelings in various situations from different angles. I would like to think that I’ve always been a curious person. However, being part of such a vibrant place and having access to talks and lectures by renowned experts in any field is unique. To follow all my interests while working long hours in the lab is tricky. But I’d like to think that I am able to prioritise tasks and efficiently work towards goals during periods of high time pressure. Also, I’ve become more resilient. In my eyes, I can interpret the outcome of tasks more objectively while trying to be not too hard on myself.

Moreover, I’ve been incredibly lucky to have built great friendships that I wouldn’t want to have missed. In particular, I am thinking of countless moments with my dear Univites on Magpie Lane who became close friends during historic times. Also, I would like to stress that my colleagues have made the time at work very special.

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Photo: Luke Drago

What do you do outside your studies? How do you balance all your sports with academics?
I like staying active, preferably outdoors. Some activities include judo, skiing, tennis, football, running, squash and swimming. However, there are only that many hours in a day and I wish I’d devote more time to pursue them. I do realise though that even small amounts of time invested into activities outside work can increase my own well-being significantly.

What is your proudest achievement (personal or professional)?
I feel quite happy with how the moustache has turned out. I wouldn’t have expected it to be an opener to interesting conversations in town. Maybe it’s as surprising as the fact that I could grow one after all. What I am very happy about, too, is having won Varsity as part of the Blues in both judo and skiing.

Describe Univ in three words.
Five Magpie Lane.

Published: 17 April 2023

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