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Students present research at 20th Annual Argonne Symposium

On November 13, ten Lake Forest College students presented biology research at the 20th Annual Argonne Symposium for Undergraduates in Science, Engineering and Mathematics at Argonne National Laboratory. Nearly 400 students, teachers, and scientists attended the symposium, and over 250 students presented original scholarship, from colleges and universities across the nation.

Over 45 Lake Forest College students have presented at Argonne, annually attending it since 2002.

“The Argonne Undergraduate Symposium in Science,” said Professor and Chair of Biology Anne Houde, “provides an excellent opportunity for students to share their scientific research with an extramural audience, obtain feedback from other students and scientists, and hone their presentation skills.”

The Lake Forest students’ research was conducted at the College, Lincoln Park Zoo, and at Rosalind Franklin University of Medicine and Science.

“The biology department at Lake Forest encourages students to experience all aspects of scientific research, from experimental design to in-depth research and communication of results,” adds Professor of Biology Lynn Westley. “Many of the students presenting their research at Argonne work closely with professors on campus, while others participate in our off-campus internship program, allowing them to do original research with scientists at a variety of Chicago institutions.” 

All ten students are preparing for scientific careers and plan to pursue a Ph.D., M.D., or graduate degrees in life sciences or health professions.

The following presentations were given by Lake Forest College students, along with other student co-authors and faculty sponsors:

• Kayla Ahlstrand ‘12 & Peter Sullivan ‘12 “Self-Cannibalizing for a Parkinson’s Disease Cure” with research from Alina Konnikova ‘10, Daniel Sanchez ‘11, and Ray Choi ‘09 (Professor Shubhik DebBurman, biology)

• Ejaz Ali ‘10 - “Volume Regulation by Rainbow Trout Red Blood Cells” with research from Daniella Brutman ‘12 and Paulius Kuprys ‘12 (Professor Doug Light, biology)

• Elaine Gustafson ‘10- “Dominance Hierarchies and Social Spacing in the Western Lowland Gorilla” (Professor Anne Houde, biology; this work was conducted at the Lincoln Park Zoo under the supervision of Dr. Steve Ross)

• Yekatsiaryna Kastsetskaya ‘12- “The Search for Telomerase RNA in Aspergillus Oryzae” (Professor Karen Kirk, biology)

• Saajidha Rizvydeen ‘12 “Measuring Fungal Ends: Does Length Vary with Reproductive Mechanism?” (Professor Karen Kirk, biology)

• Yama Sadozai ‘10 “Genetic Mapping of Short Pharynx Mutant Line of C. elegans M77” with research from Andrew Ferrier ‘08 (Professor Pliny Smith, biology)

• Natalie Simak ‘11- “Maturation of NMDA Receptor Synaptic Function in the Prefrontal Cortex Emerges During the Adolescent Transition Period” (Professor Kuei Y. Tseng, Rosalind Franklin University of Medicine and Science)

• Keith Solvang ‘11 “Familial Parkinson’s Disease Mutant E46K Expresses Pathology-related Properties in Yeast” with research from Michael Fiske ‘10, (Professor Shubhik DebBurman, biology)

• Shabana Yusufishaq ‘12- “Using Nematodes to find Gene Locations Related to Muscular Dystrophy” (Professor Shubhik DebBurman, biology; this work was done at Rosalind Franklin University of Medicine and Science, under the supervision of Professor Hongkyun Kim)

Lake Forest College is a national liberal arts institution located 30 miles north of downtown Chicago. The College has 1,400 students representing 47 states and 72 countries.