Thursday, August 25, 2016

RCMed Review Fellowship Winner Returns

In the Spring, biochemistry major  Alexandra Hochstetler won the RCMed Review Fellowship and chose to research this past Summer at the South Bend campus of the IU School of Medicine  with Professor of Pediatrics, Dr. Margaret Schwarz. Hochstetler spent the summer studying the role of the protein EMAP-II in lung development at the molecular and the cellular levels. A particular project investigated the development of mice which lacked the genes that code for EMAP-II. Hochstetler describes her experience as "awesome" because she got to do "new things everyday". It must have indeed been awesome as Hochstetler will continue to work with Dr. Schwarz during the school year.

Hochstetler is grateful for this opportunity which allowed her to further develop her critical thinking and trouble shooting skills. She also learned to see how the work of individual research teams fits within the big picture of scientific discovery. Hochstetler plans to take a year "off" after college to carry out some more laboratory research, then go to medical school, and finally work in medical research.

Our campus will be accepting applications for next year's RCMed Review Fellowship in the Spring semester. If you are interested in this fellowship or other research opportunities, please contact your favorite biology, chemistry, or biochemistry professor for details.

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Biology Chemistry Club Welcomes Students

The Biology Chemistry Club welcomed new students this week by helping them make “slime” and blowing off steam launching film cans into the air with Alkaseltzer and water. They also displayed several examples from the biological world with molecular models. The club has plans for science outreach, tie-dyeing lab coats, tours of local industries, guest speakers from academia and industry, informational panels from medical school admissions, and, of course, the traditional end of year geek party. For more information about the club you can check them out on Facebook and their university site.

Friday, August 12, 2016

Summer Research in the Anderson Lab

Niles High School student Madeline Stanton and biochemistry major Victor Gutierrez-Schultz have been working with Professor Gretchen Anderson this summer to correct a mutation in the enzyme, arsenite oxidase. The two genes for the enzyme (one gene for each subunit) were cloned into E. coli by previous IU South Bend students, but along the way, a mutation was introduced in the smaller subunit. Victor analyzed the sequencing data from last year (thanks to 2016 biochemistry graduate Jared LaRue), found the mutation, and used genetic engineering to fix the mutation back to its native nucleotide. Both Madeline and Victor then worked together to confirm that the mutation was indeed fixed, and are now sequencing the two genes to determine if any further mutations were introduced during the fix.