Displaying 1 - 26 of 26

Uncovering the Role of C4 Enzymes in C3 Photosynthesis under High-Stress Conditions

Lindsey Ching : Molecular Environmental Biology Summer 2020

The vast majority of plants and crops, used both for food and fuel, utilize a type of photosynthesis in which the enzyme RuBisCO catalyzes the primary assimilation of carbon dioxide into sugar, termed C3 photosynthesis. However, certain plant lineages have evolved both biochemical and anatomical alterations, called C4 photosynthesis, that allow the enzyme PEP... Read More

Nanoconfined Phase Change Materials for Aqueous Thermal Management

Kelly Chou : Chemistry Summer 2020

Over 40% of U.S. freshwater withdrawals are used for the generation of thermoelectric power: more than the amount withdrawn for agricultural irrigation and domestic use combined. Such high water demand can largely be attributed to water’s critical role as an industrial coolant. Phase change materials can greatly decrease the volume of water required to cool... Read More

Spatiotemporally Mapping the CRISPR-CasX Binding and Repair of DNA

Davina Dou : Molecular and Cell Biology, Computer Science Summer 2020

As a fellow, I will be working to develop a live-cell imaging platform to understand the mechanisms of the CRISPR-CasX endonuclease and its potential to be harnessed for gene-editing. More specifically, I will be looking at the length of the protein's DNA binding and its rate of repair. My findings will provide a clearer understanding of CRISPR mechanisms in cells, and... Read More

Tuning the Catalyst Size of Helical van der Waals Crystals

Stephen Gee : Materials Science, Engineering Summer 2020

This project is exploring the tunability of helical van der Waals nanowires. These nanoscale wires are made of layers of Germanium Sulfide stacked on top of each other, similar to graphite being made of stacked layers of graphene. However, in these nanowires, there is a literal twist running down the middle, resulting in a double helix structure that produces... Read More

Supercrystal Self-Assembly of Quantum Dots

Amoolya Grandhi : Chemistry Summer 2020

Quantum dot supercrystals hold a lot of potential for future nanophotonics due to their unique optical and electric properties. Quantum dots, which are semiconducting nanoparticles, can act like atoms and arrange into a crystal structure, forming something called a supercrystal. These supercrystals have been found to form interesting shapes such as spheres, rods, and... Read More

Scanning Tunneling Microscopy on Multiferroic Thin Film Oxides

Jordan Huang : Physics Summer 2020

The recent interest in the properties of multiferroic materials is due to its proposed application in a variety of technologies such as sensors and data storage devices as well as its application in the miniaturization of technological devices. The scanning tunneling microscope (STM), with its capabilities to study materials on the atomic level, is a very useful tool... Read More

In Silico Analysis of Bottle Cells, Fates, and Migration

Damian Kim : Molecular Chemical Biology Summer 2020

During gastrulation in Xenopus, a specific group of cells located at the organizer, called Bottle Cells, undergo apical constriction and invagination, forming the dorsal lip of the blastopore. Immediately after, the neighboring cells involute inwards towards the anterior end of the embryo, forming the mesoderm and the archenteron. Although the behaviors of cells have... Read More

Clathrin-Mediated Endocytosis in 3D Cerebral Organoids

Jonathan Kuo : Molecular and Cell Biology, Intended Rhetoric Summer 2020

Clathrin-mediated endocytosis (CME) is a critical process in cells that maintains the balance of signaling and receptor molecules on the cellular surface. This balance is critical in the development of the human cerebral cortex, during which neuroepithelial stem cells must choose to divide or differentiate. These cell fate decisions are dependent on the distribution of... Read More

Investigating inter-areal communication in the mouse visual cortex

Leonardo Lahijani : Molecular Cell Biology - Neurobiology Summer 2020

The visual cortex is composed of several brain areas that are considered to give rise to different aspects of visual perception, and it is thought that these areas work in conjunction to give rise to the experiential percept of vision. In this project, I will aid in investigating the neurological circuitry in primary and higher visual areas in the mouse visual cortex... Read More

Molecular Dynamics Simulations of a Molten Salt Double Layer

Luke Langford : Materials Science and Engineering Summer 2020

Molten salt reactors (MSRs) are an attractive source of nuclear power generation due to improved efficiency and negligible risk of meltdown. However, corrosion of reactor components by molten salt present a serious challenge to the reliability of MSRs. In order to make realistic estimates of reactor lifetimes, a kinetic model of molten salt corrosion must be developed... Read More

Investigating Applicable Biotechnologies of Cyanobacteria with a Comprehensive Pangenome

Anderson Lee : Bioengineering Summer 2020

This summer, I will be creating and analyzing a pangenome of cyanobacteria. Cyanobacteria have long been of interest in the synthetic biology world because of certain traits, such as hydrogen and biopharmaceutical production. The pangenome will compare all of the genes of the sequenced cyanobacterial strains, not only allowing the construction of a phylogenomic tree... Read More

Paleomagnetism of the Klamath Mountains

Leyla Namazie : Geophysics Summer 2020

The Klamath Mountains are one of the many "suspect terranes" that comprise the West Coast of North America. Due to the increased tectonic activity of this region, the history and paleogeography of this Western Cordillera remain enigmatic. It is largely unknown whether or not these terranes originated in place or were accreted (delivered from off coast). This... Read More

Investigating the antiviral effects and mechanism of action of cyclodextrins against SARS-CoV-2 pathogenesis

Trishna Patel : Molecular and Cell Biology, Cell and Developmental Biology Summer 2020

The recent COVID-19 pandemic, caused by the novel coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2), has catalyzed a global public health crisis, and effective therapeutics as well as a deeper understanding of the mechanism of severe disease induced by SARS-CoV-2 infections are desperately needed. Severe cases of COVID-19 are associated with vascular leak in the lungs of infected individuals,... Read More

Investigating Molecular Mechanisms Behind the Loss of Mammalian Heart Regeneration

Nevan Powers : Molecular and Cell Biology Summer 2020

Any significant damage to our heart tissue results in permanent scarring and irreversible loss of function, but animals like newts and zebrafish can naturally replace the lost tissue and recover to a healthy state. Looking at trends between species, it appears that mammals may have evolved to lose regenerative potential as they acquired endothermy. Interestingly, we... Read More

Investigating How 3D Mechanical Forces influence Neuroectoderm Specification in Human Embryonic Development

Mason Sakamoto : Bioengineering Summer 2020

Stem cells have been heralded as the future of medicine for their ability to develop into new tissues, repair regions damaged by disease or injury, and give rise to entirely new organisms. However, in order to fully harness the power of stem cells, we must first understand the environmental cues responsible for the cells’ behavior. Evidence is accumulating that the... Read More

Microscopic interaction between localized f-electrons and conduction electrons

Sarah Schwarz : Physics Summer 2020

In a crystalline solid, the constituent atoms’ electron orbitals overlap, forming energy bands which allow electrons to travel through the solid as waves. The interaction between local electrons in f-orbitals and delocalized, wave-like band states of the conduction electrons underlies several areas of contemporary, fundamental research in solid state physics. In my... Read More

Mechanistic Characterization of Candidate Cold Tolerance Proteins in Freshwater Tardigrade Hypsibius Exemplaris

DéJenaé See : Chemical Biology Summer 2020

Tardigrades are frequently studied for their profound ability to withstand environmental stressors, but the mechanisms and degree to which they survive these conditions have been demonstrated to differ between species. This project explores how one freshwater tardigrade species, Hypsibius exemplaris, tolerates subfreezing temperatures by an apparently unique method... Read More

Identifying and Modelling Strong Gravitationally-lensed Systems using Neural Networks

William Sheu : Computer Science, Physics Summer 2020

The mystery of dark matter and the nature surrounding the cosmic expansion rate (H0) are among the most fundamental questions in physics today. Dark matter outweighs “ordinary” matter (which stars and planets are made up of) by a ratio of 5:1, and yet much surrounding dark matter is unknown. H0 dictates the expansion rate of the universe, and yet the two current... Read More

The Role of Exosomes in Human SK-N-SH Neuroblastoma Cells During Neural Differentiation

Angela Sun : Molecular and Cell Biology Summer 2020

Exosomes were initially thought to act as cellular waste compartments because of their extrusion from the cell. It was only recently discovered that exosomes contain not only cellular proteins, but also act as natural carriers of nucleic acid material, playing an important part in communication in the brain. Previous studies have demonstrated that exosomes play a role... Read More

Unraveling Novel Mechanisms of Dengue Virus RNA Capping and Immune Evasion

Hunter Thornton : MCB-Immunology Summer 2020

Mosquito-borne diseases are a major burden to public health systems, especially in developing countries. It is estimated that about 3.9 billion people worldwide are at risk of infection with dengue virus, with 50-100 million cases per year1. Nonetheless, safe vaccines and therapeutics for dengue are not available. Transmission occurs through the bite of female Aedes... Read More

Investigating the Infertility Phenotype of Rpl41 Knockout Mice

Kristy Tjokro : Molecular and Cell Biology (CDB Track 1) Summer 2020

I am investigating the gene Rpl41 in a mouse model. Rpl41 is a ribosomal protein coding gene of the large ribosome subunit. It is one of 80 highly conserved ribosomal genes. In literature, mutations to the ribosomal protein genes have resulted in drastic phenotypic differences in even heterozygous individuals, many resulting in embryonic lethality. Rpl41 is a highly... Read More

Ecological niche modeling of Loranthaceae aerial haustorial morphology across Australia

Kenneth Trang : Microbial Biology Summer 2020

While most famously a holiday symbol of love and affection, mistletoe plants also play an indispensable role in the balance of global woodland ecosystems, providing birds with shelter and nutrition, while also replenishing soil nutrients and carbon via high leaf shedding rates. In fact, experiments have demonstrated that the removal of mistletoe populations can lead to... Read More

Stabilization of Crystalline Catalysts for Olefin Epoxidation via Hydrophobic Surface Groups

Victoria Venardi : Chemical Engineering Summer 2020

This summer, I will be working on developing highly efficient and stable catalysts for the production of propylene oxide (PO), a chemical used in construction, upholstery, and automobiles. The instability of the current industrial amorphous catalyst causes numerous shutdowns per year during production and creates unnecessary waste, including 750 thousand tons of carbon... Read More

Understanding Neuroendocrine Control of the LH Surge

Victoria Vo : Molecular and Cell Biology Summer 2020

All steps of female reproduction, including ovulation, fertilization, and pregnancy, rely on timed secretion of reproductive hormones. The release of hormones in our bodies coincide with our exposure to the natural light and dark cycle. In women with poor sleep hygiene and irregular work schedules, circadian desynchronization has been shown to negatively impact... Read More

Spatiotemporal dynamics of type II actin nucleation-promoting factors at clathrin-coated pits

Amy Yan : Molecular and Cell Biology Summer 2020

Clathrin-mediated endocytosis (CME) is a conserved cellular pathway that internalizes receptors from the cell membrane that is coordinated by a wide assortment of proteins. This process is crucial for cellular growth, maintenance, and nutrient uptake.
Nucleation of actin proteins has been shown to provide crucial forces for the internalization process. While well... Read More

Molecular weight dependence of plastic (PCL) degradation by an embedded enzyme-RHP complex

Kyle Zolkin : Chemical Biology Summer 2020

The environmental plastic problems that plague our planet have become increasingly threatening and an urgent need to solve this epidemic has arisen. Efforts to mitigate this damage have been made but recycling approaches are inefficient and do not eliminate microplastics and enzymatic plastic degradation is costly and diffusion limited. We have proposed a nanoscopic... Read More