Published: Sept. 26, 2023
Clair Huffine

Clair Huffine is a 2025 PhD candidate in the Cameron Laboratory. She recently won the 2023 Biophysics Supergroup Outstanding Research Presentation Award; is a 2023 P.E.O. SCHOLARS Award applicant; and in 2022 was an NIH/CU Molecular Biophysics trainee and received Honorable Mention for GRFP - the NSF Graduate Research Fellowship Program.


A Creative and Community-minded Researcher

Giving back gives me energy. In addition to board service with S.C.O.P.E (Science Community Outreach Program and Education), I co-founded QSci: Queers in STEM in order to build a thriving community for LGBTQ+ students, staff, and faculty. Additionally, I am a member of P.E.O., a women’s philanthropic organization whose mission is to fund women’s education at all levels, high school to graduate school. With a love for all things green, I spend my weekends backpacking, tending my jungle of houseplants (complete with my “jungle-cat” Kiki), or fly fishing. I also work as a freelance artist, primarily creating digitally painted landscapes or graphic design work for board games. These skills have been transferable to my scientific career with creating compelling scientific figures for my papers and presentations, increasing community engagement with monthly QSci Posters, and crafting memorable and attractive logos for S.C.O.P.E. My portfolio can be found at


Research: Biochemistry for Climate Change

Bacterial cells are often thought of as lacking subcellular organization. However, bacteria do in fact possess both membrane-bound regions as well as, unique from eukaryotes, protein encapsulated regions in order to accomplish incredible biochemical feats. In Dr. Jeffrey Cameron’s lab, I use time lapse fluorescence microscopy to track the redox state inside the carboxysome, which are protein-encapsulated bacterial microcompartments that house the CO2-fixing machinery for cyanobacteria (commonly known as blue-green algae) and allow them to efficiently remove CO2 from the atmosphere and convert it into sugars and biomass. Having always been driven by the plight of climate change, I hope to provide insight into this CO2-capturing mechanism to ultimately offset increasing atmospheric CO2-levels and slow climate change. I plan to pursue a career focused on addressing climate change through applied research and scientific outreach.


My Life's Journey

I grew up in northern Virginia and with a biology and chemistry degree in hand and moving from one mountain range to the next, I began my graduate degree at the University of Colorado Boulder the Fall of 2020. I wanted to pursue my graduate degree that held inter- and intra-lab teamwork in science as an ideal. I couldn’t help but notice how collaborative and welcoming the scientific environment at CU Boulder was. Students and faculty alike were enthusiastic to share their work, make new interdisciplinary connections, and support their peers in any way possible. I joined through the Interdisciplinary Quantitative (IQ) Biology program, which focuses on crossing disciplinary boundaries, encouraging collaboration, and developing computational skill sets.

Clair has a volunteer mindset about life, “Science does not occur in a vacuum; dissemination of research and engagement of the wider community is essential for scientific progress. As such, I have volunteered time across several organizations to foster connections, act as a scientific liaison, and spark excitement about cutting edge research driving science forward..” Not to mention, when she's not in the lab, Clair is using her creative talents to support interesting graphics for student-led groups she is involved in, as well as creative illustrations for scientific papers. Download Clair's CU Boulder Biochemistry journey

The Cameron Lab - BCHM