As we all know, during this quarantine period lab-based research activities are limited, and in most cases have almost come to a standstill. In order to cope with this change and to keep our scientific work ongoing we are trying to find ways by which we can make the best use of this time. Nikola and Toni in Germany have access to labs and continue working with certain limitations.

For most of us, one important alternative is data analysis and we are taking the time to represent the data we have obtained over the past months in the best way possible. Secondly, there is ample time to focus on writing a manuscript or even to start building our thesis, as this will be quite difficult to balance when we get back to the laboratory. Thirdly, reading and reviewing the current literature can help gain a lot of insights and will allow us to better plan our next experiments.

Online learning is another option, and some of our institutions launched Massive Online Open Courses (MOOCs) especially for this situation. This is a great opportunity to improve different skills; for example, Liliane and Frederico are learning Italian and Mehmet is learning French on online platforms supported by their Universities. Some of us are also trying to get hands on experience of different software and programming skills. For all of us, it is also important to keep in touch with our supervisors and workmates, not only to keep a track of our advances and get some ideas but also to feel that we are not alone in this. Communicating with our families and friends from a distance helps us to remember this fact, and video calls are becoming more regular as a consequence of the confinement.

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