Prize-Winning Interns Earn Travel Stipends to Display Their Discoveries at Upcoming Scientific Conferences
This summer 14 students hailing from all across the United States worked in labs at The Herbert Wertheim UF Scripps Institute for Biomedical Research & Technology during a 10-week, National Science Foundation-funded summer undergraduate internship experience designed to prepare students for future careers in biomedical research.
From the moment they arrived in June, they focused intensely on diverse projects that probed the molecular basis of health and disease. Their projects included detailing how cells’ receptors involved in auto-immune disease work, exploring strategies for reducing side-effects of pain medicines, devising probes for detecting the chemical activity of reactive oxygen species, and discovering the factors that cause immune stem cells to develop in abnormal ways in blood cancers.
Their summer culminated on Aug. 11 with an intense poster session that required them to communicate their research visually, and explain their data to questioners who included scientists and graduate students. There were many outstanding presentations, with travel awards provided to several interns, who will have an opportunity to present their summer work at a national conference selected by their faculty mentor.
Professor Katrin Karbstein, Ph.D., oversaw the SURF program, along with Rosie Albarran Zeckler, manager of academic support services.
“Having these students here and seeing them grow and develop as scientists literally in front of your eyes is one of the great joys and privileges of our work. The enthusiasm, and motivation of these young scientists is infectious. What they were able to accomplish here is incredible, and honestly, they all deserve at least an honorable mention.”Immunology and Microbiology Professor Katrin Karbstein, Ph.D.
Top prizes for posters went to:
- Christina Knight, who studied in the lab of Kate Carroll, Ph.D.. Hailing from Georgia Tech, Knight’s poster title was, “Synthesis of a Multifunctional Probe for the Purpose of Detecting H2O2 and Systeine Sulfenic Acids.”
- Caitlin Bradley, who studied in the lab of Ciaran Seath, Ph.D.. A student at Oglethorpe University, Bradley’s poster title was, “Synthesis and Target Identification of SynGAP1 Upregulator.”
- Mindi Klaus, who interned in the lab of Katrin Karbstein, Ph.D.. Klaus attends Ohio Wesleyan University. Her poster title was, “The Role of Rps-26-Deficient Ribosomes in Sugar Metabolism.”
Honorable mention went to:
- Natasha Mayorga, an intern in the lab of Courtney Miller, Ph.D.. Mayorga is a student at Florida Atlantic University. Her poster was titled, “Development of novel TAP-IT mouse line for exploration of neuronal NMIIB dynamics.”
- Sofia Gonzalez, who interned in the lab of Laura Bohn, Ph.D.. Gonzalez is a student at the University of South Florida. Her poster title was, “Characterizing Biased Agonism of Triazoles in the Kappa Opioid Receptor.”
- Finn Rose, who interned in the lab of Matthew Disney, Ph.D.. Rose studies at Coastal Carolina University. Rose’s poster title was, “Characterization of RNA-Targeting Small Molecules for Phosolamban-Associated Cardiomyopahty.”
Please enjoy this short video about the poster session. Below, click through a photo gallery.