EIGHT UCI UNDERGRADUATE SCIENCE STUDENTS WIN PRESTIGIOUS NATIONAL AWARDS
Irvine, Calif., March 7, 2002 - Eight UC Irvine undergraduate science students won top awards at the student poster competition of the American Association for the Advancement of Science Annual Meeting in Boston Feb. 15, 2002.
Biological sciences majors Rafael Gonzalez, Matilde Gonzalez, Sylvia Jaramillo and psychology major Bonnie Sue Poytress won first place recognition for their posters, and biological sciences majors Cheryse Furman, Kathi Lynn Hamor, David Hernandez and Sarah Lopez earned honorable mention notice.
The UCI award-winning undergraduates participate in research training in the Biological Sciences Minority Science Programs (MSP) that is funded by the National Institutes of Health. In past poster competitions, MSP undergraduates received two first places at the 2001 AAAS meeting in San Francisco and one first place at the 2000 AAAS meeting in Washington, D.C.
Scientific posters provide a visual snapshot of a research project, using a brief amount of text and extensive visuals to explain the work. These posters are usually presented with others of a similar topic and are judged for the quality and originality of the data. The AAAS student poster competition featured six categories.
"We have long regarded the involvement of undergraduates in biological research as an important facet of their education," said Susan V. Bryant, dean of the School of Biological Sciences. "Almost 600 of our students and 150 non-majors engage in biological research in 200 laboratories in both the School of Biological Sciences and in the UCI College of Medicine. More than two dozen biology students who have won prestigious national awards and fellowships over the past few years have engaged in individual research projects. The dedication of the faculty is critical for the success of the undergraduate research experience."
The School of Biological Sciences hosts an annual research symposium where the best students present their data and then publish their work in the Journal of Undergraduate Research in Biological Sciences. This journal has been published since 1971, making it one of the oldest such journals in the United States.
The AAAS is the world's largest organization of scientists. The AAAS Annual Meeting offered an interdisciplinary blend of more than 130 symposia, plenary and topical lectures, poster presentations and exhibits. The poster session included about 300 posters presented by national and international undergraduate and graduate students.
Listed by poster category, the award-winning UCI students and the projects in which they participated are:
MOLECULAR & CELLULAR BIOLOGY
FIRST PLACE: Sylvia Jaramillo, "Growth differentiation factor 11, a negative regulator of neural proliferation in the olfactory epithelium."
HONORABLE MENTION: Sarah Lopez, "Analysis of interleukine-10 promoter polymorphisms in patients with cervical uterine cancer."
HONORABLE MENTION: David Hernandez, "Anti-parasite immune responses influence growth of the parasite Schistosoma mansoni."
LIFE SCIENCES: ORGANISMAL BIOLOGY
FIRST PLACE: Rafael Gonzalez, "Reducing the T cell response to spinal cord injury decreases post-traumatic degeneration."
HONORABLE MENTION: Kathi Lynn Hamor, "Evaluation of an enzyme immunoassay using peptides representing the major outer membrane protein variable domains of Chlamydia pneumoniae."
LIFE SCIENCES: ECOLOGY & ENVIRONMENT
FIRST PLACE: Matilde Gonzalez, "Distribution and abundance of Vibrio cholerae in various aquatic environments in Northern Tamaulipas, Mexico."
HONORABLE MENTION: Cheryse Furman, "Changes in morphological and physiological traits with evolution of separate sexes in plants."
SOCIAL AND BEHAVIORAL SCIENCES
FIRST PLACE: Bonnie Sue Poytress, "Post-training corticosterone facilities conditioned suppression of bar pressing behavior following tone-shock pairing in rats."
UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA, IRVINE: A TOP-10 PUBLIC UNIVERSITY
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