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Meet Jessica


"I’ve always been fascinated by how we perceive and detect items in our environment, and how perception varies across different people. We encode salient information in the brain using highly specialized sensory systems, and when I learned about this I decided to become a neurobiologist. In particular, I study how our olfactory system detects and encodes complex odors using receptors found in the nose.



I am interested in how the brain mechanistically works, what governs our individual responses and preferences, and why our brain pays attention to certain types of information instead of others. For example, you can perceive fine touch but are not typically consciously aware of the clothing you wear. The thrill of discovery – that moment when you suspect you are the only person on Earth who has this particular insight – and the ability to share that information with others to deepen our collective understanding, motivates me. I remember my first scientific presentation at a large international conference, when my work was greeted with interest, enthusiasm, and constructive feedback from my colleagues. That was inspirational, hence my favorite experience is the collaborative nature of science: it’s an international enterprise, and I truly enjoy working with and learning from scientists around the world.


My favorite thing about Firmenich is the ability to translate laboratory knowledge and scientific excellence into meaningful and impactful products for consumers. I collaborate with such a diverse array of scientific disciplines and skill sets to bring the best of our new technologies to our clients and consumers."