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The Biotechnology Institute Scholars Program


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One of the major initiatives of the Biotechnology Institute provides a two semester stipend to support undergraduate researchers in the molecular life sciences at CCSU. The Biotechnology Institute (B.I.) Scholars program is modeled after the NSF Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU), which encourages undergraduate research in the sciences, and provides stipends for student researchers. The CCSU students who are named Biotechnology Institute Scholars will have a unique opportunity to conduct in-depth research with the faculty during two semesters. The B.I. Scholars program is a student-centered research program that will involve students in every aspect of the research endeavor - from experimental concept, to proposal, data collection, analysis, write-up, presentation, and publication. This type of in depth research experience will serve to develop a studentís career and educational goals, improve their overall academic commitment and performance, and make them highly attractive candidates for graduate training, medical training, or for jobs in biomedical research.

The B.I. Scholars will receive a stipend to perform 15-20 hrs/week of directed undergraduate research. The stipend is critical to the students, in that it allows them the opportunity to focus on research in the MLS, in lieu of part-time jobs that do not advance their career skills. The B.I. Scholars will be required to give a presentation of their research at the Biotechnology Institute Forum in the spring. We believe that the B.I. Scholars will be strong applicants for summer internship programs and semester co-ops at area companies such as Boehringer-Ingelheim, Bristol Myers, and Pfizer. As funding increases, more Scholars will be supported by the Biotechnology Institute.

B.I. Scholars, 2004-2005

Four CCSU students were named B.I. Scholars during the year. Each received support from the Institute for one-semester research projects. One (E.R.) received support for a second time, enabling her to continue her research as a senior. Another (L.A.) is working in a USDA lab, and entering graduate school next fall. One graduate (T.P.) is continuing his studies in the MA program at CCSU, and the fourth (A.L.) is preparing for application to medical school. The Institute is pleased to have aided these students in their research efforts, and proud of their accomplishments. We look forward to their significant contributions in the future.

Elizabeth Reed continued her work on techniques for the separation of racemic mixtures of aldehydes and ketones. Diastereomeric mixtures of imines were prepared and separated by traditional methods, then treated with aqueous acid to release the enantiomerically pure substrates.  Some of this work was presented at the 59th Eastern Colleges Science Conference at CCSU on April 9, 2005 (Liz's abstract)

Lisa Aschenbrenner worked with Mike Davis on the purification of antibacterial compounds secreted by soil bacteria. The separation of these bioactive agents from complex mixtures (of used bacterial growth medium) presented significant challenges, and Lisa applied a variety of isolation techniques to partially purify chemicals which may ultimately be useful for human disease therapy.

Tom Pagliaruli, collaborating with Jim Mulrooney, investigated the action of specific proteins involved in cell migration, a process essential to human embryonic development. His results were presented at the 59th Eastern Colleges Science Conference at CCSU on April 9, 2005 (Tom's abstract).

Angela Lauretano worked in Marty Kapper's lab on biochemical mechanisms of salinity adaptation in estuarine mussels. She showed that gill cell membranes contain aquaporins, water channel proteins, and investigated the levels of aquaporins in mussels during adaptation to changing salt concentrations. She also presented her results at the 59th Eastern Colleges Science Conference at CCSU on April 9, 2005 (Angela's abstract).

B.I Scholars from Previous Years

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Website Administrator: Michael Davis
RevisedApril 11, 2008