Sammy Keyport Kik

Former graduate student

Sammy did her graduate work in the Genetics, Genomics and Systems Biology graduate program at the University of Chicago. She joined the Drummond lab in July 2018, and graduted with her PhD in June 2023.

Sammy recevied her B.S. in Molecular Biology in 2016 from Loyola University Chicago. Her undergraduate work explored microbial community diversity in wetlands inundated with invasive species.

Sammy’s research utilized genetics, biochemistry, and computational biology to address the fundamental question: how do cells across the tree of life sense and respond to stress? Specifically, her currernt work explores stress-induced protein condensation as a conserved, adaptive, and tuned response to features of the cellular and organismal environment. Sammy’s graduate work was supported by the NIH Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award (NRSA) F31 via the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS).

In her free time, Sammy was an assistant editor at the Illinois Science Council blog, and she watches a lot of soccer.


An adaptive biomolecular condensation response is conserved across environmentally divergent species

Adaptive preservation of orphan ribosomal proteins in chaperone-stirred condensates


Some like it hot: temperature signals across the tree of life