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Wednesday, April 17th
8:15 AM

Nuclear Speckles as a Mediator of Dynamic Intron Retention in Developing Neuron Cells

Joshua Mu '25, Illinois Mathematics and Science Academy

8:15 AM - 8:30 AM

Alternative splicing is crucial for the genetic complexity of mammalian systems, allowing for the creation of numerous mRNA sequences and therefore protein isoforms from a single transcript. While introns are typically excluded from the final sequence, they may be dynamically retained to facilitate intron-mediated gene expression via protein production and RNA stability. In mouse embryonic cells, retained intron regulatory schemes ... Read More

Single-Cell Analysis of ChP-BAM Co-cultured Organoids

William Yu '25, Illinois Mathematics and Science Academy

8:15 AM - 8:30 AM

The choroid plexus (ChP) is a part of the blood-brain barrier that is responsible for cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) secretion, which washes out toxins and enables nutrient transport. Correspondingly, the ChP serves as a niche for immune cells (e.g. Border Associated Macrophages (BAMs). Studies suggest that ChP and immune dysfunction increases the incidence of Alzeimer’s Disease (AD), however, in vitro models ... Read More

The Effects of Chemotherapeutic Stress on NAT10 Expression in U937 Cells

Haoran Shi '25, Illinois Mathematics and Science Academy

8:15 AM - 8:30 AM

The efficacy of chemotherapeutic drug regimens has been a longstanding concern for cancer treatments, highlighting the need for research on how they could become more effective. A possible answer could lie in the field of epitranscriptomics, in which chemical modifications are made to RNA to affect gene expression. In this study, we aimed to find the effects of drug treatment ... Read More

8:35 AM

Cloning Plasmids for Gene Editing in Human Lung Cells

Shatakshi Chatterjee '25, Illinois Mathematics and Science Academy

8:35 AM - 8:50 AM

The purpose of gene editing is to manipulate the expression levels of a gene of interest. The focus of this experiment was to manipulate TP63 expression levels between proximal and distal epithelial airway cells. Gene cloning was performed through restriction enzyme digest cloning, in which the non-region of interest is cut off and substituted with the gene sequence of interest ... Read More

Hyolingual Kinematics and Biplanar Videoradiography Reveal Hydrostatic Deformation of the Tongue Base

Riya Gumidyala '25, Illinois Mathematics and Science Academy

8:35 AM - 8:50 AM

Tongue base retraction (TBR) is the action of the tongue being pulled backwards and shortened and is vital to swallowing in mammals. Compromised TBR performance leads to patients having more food residue in the pharynx, posing more risks for choking. However, the biomechanical mechanisms driving TBR remain poorly understood. The muscular hydrostat hypothesis posits that the hydrostatic deformation related to ... Read More

8:55 AM

FAV Intake’s Effect on Kidney Filtration

Ria Cherukuri '25, Illinois Mathematics and Science Academy

8:55 AM - 9:10 AM

This study analyzes the connections between reported diet, in terms of fruit and vegetable (FAV) intake, observed serum carotenoid values, and kidney function in people with sickle cell disease. An adequate FAV intake has a beneficial impact on kidney health, and people with sickle cell disease are at much higher risk of medical complications and early mortality if they also ... Read More

9:20 AM

Mechanism Exploration and Screening for Drug Resistance Induced by SAM-RNA in Breast Cancer

Lily Zhang '25, Illinois Mathematics and Science Academy

9:20 AM - 9:35 AM

Some patients who are initially sensitive to such chemotherapy and endocrine therapy quickly develop acquired drug resistance. We aim to explore the molecular changes and potential regulatory mechanisms during the acquisition of chemotherapy and endocrine therapy resistance in breast cancer, or further to find molecular indicators that can be used to early predict the occurrence of drug resistance or efficacy ... Read More

The Interactions Between Proteins and Automating Predictions with Mass Spectrometry

Vedanti Joshi '25, Illinois Mathematics and Science Academy

9:20 AM - 9:35 AM

This research aims to explore the impact of local geometric constraints on the conformations of amino acid side-chain dihedral angles in proteins. The understanding of the fundamental principles that govern protein structure is essential for the development of new proteins and the analysis of mutations in natural proteins. Our specific objective is to quantify the influence of geometric and physicochemical ... Read More

9:40 AM

Development of a Baculovirus-based Packaging System for Efficient Recombinant Retrovirus Production

Rachel Qi '25, Illinois Mathematics and Science Academy

9:40 AM - 9:55 AM

Retroviral vectors are commonly used for generating stable cells to express transgenes. However, packaging high-titer retroviruses is technically challenging due to variations in co-transfecting the packaging cells with multiple plasmids that express genes essential for retrovirus production, leading to inefficient and inconsistent virus production and dramatic virus titer fluctuations. The objective of this study is to investigate whether or not ... Read More

Effects of Initial Domain Packing in Lipid Monolayer Shear Banding Collapse

Anjali Samal '25, Illinois Mathematics and Science Academy

9:40 AM - 9:55 AM

Found in alveoli in the form of lung surfactants, the structure of a lipid monolayer is composed of hydrophobic tails surrounded by air and hydrophilic heads that assimilate with water. As we breathe in and out, lung surfactants expand and contract to optimize air intake volume and pressure, causing collapse under high compressive stresses and strains during exhalation. We can ... Read More

10:00 AM

Amyloid-ß Oligomer Formations Over Time

Maitreyi Pandey '24, Illinois Mathematics and Science Academy

10:00 AM - 10:15 AM

Alzheimer’s disease is progressive, fatal, and the leading cause of dementia (Chang et. al, 2003). Based on the amyloid-ß oligomer (AßOs) hypothesis, the brain damage that leads to Alzheimer’s is due to soluble, ligand-like AßOs (Lambert et. al, 1998; Cline et. al, 2018). This experiment aims to understand how time affects the formation of AßOs, specifically at near- physiological concentrations. ... Read More

10:25 AM

The Context-dependent Effects of Fiber Fermentaon on Klebsiella Pneumonia Suppression

Lucinda Stocco '25, Illinois Mathematics and Science Academy

10:25 AM - 10:40 AM

The gut-microbiome is a crucial part of the human digestive system, responsible for the regulation of metabolism as well as the immune system. Fiber and high fiber diets have been researched to understand their correlation with the health of the gut-microbiome. However, recent findings have shown that fiber can have additional health effects, such as inflammation, in certain populations (Wastyk ... Read More

Understanding the Disease Progression of Acute Myeloid Leukemia in Murine Models and Identifying Therapeutic Targets for Leukemic Stem Cells

Sreehaas Chinnala '25, Illinois Mathematics and Science Academy

10:25 AM - 10:40 AM

To learn more about the roles of Hox A9/A10 in leukemia development, we use an in-vivo model for myeloid differentiation. Mixed lineage leukemia 1 (MLL1) is a gene rearrangement of Acute Myeloid Leukemia (AML). Ubiquitination, the addition of ubiquitin to proteins, also modifies AML

Patients with MLL-1 rearranged variation of AML do not survive for more than six months with ... Read More

10:45 AM

Genomic, Transcriptomic, and Epigenomic Correlates of Outcome Among Patients with High-risk Neuroblastoma Treated with Anti-GD2 Antibody

Sahil Veeravalli '24, Illinois Mathematics and Science Academy

10:45 AM - 11:00 AM

Neuroblastoma is the most common extracranial solid tumor in childhood. Those with high-risk (HR) disease have a long-term survival rate of approximately 60%. Patients with high-risk neuroblastoma treated with the Anti-GD2 antibody have demonstrated significant improvements in outcome. Despite these improvements, approximately 30-35% patients continue to experience poor clinical outcomes. We aim to develop a biomarker of outcome which may ... Read More

Stabilizing Regulatory T-cell Function in Vitiligo Using Treg-promoting Genes FoxP3 and TIGIT

David Dickson '24, Illinois Mathematics and Science Academy

10:45 AM - 11:00 AM

Melanocytes are highly differentiated cells that produce pigment melanin inside melanosomes. Vitiligo is an autoimmune disease characterized by the immune system attacking melanocytes. The result is symmetric white patches on the skin devoid of melanin. While there is no cure for vitiligo, researchers have found too few regulatory T cells (Tregs) in the skin of patients with vitiligo, and injecting ... Read More

11:05 AM

𝛽-Actin as a Transcription Factor of Hox Genes in Mouse Embryonic Stem Cells

Kohl Vonder Haar '24, Illinois Mathematics and Science Academy

11:05 AM - 11:20 AM

Hox genes are conserved across all eukaryotic life. Playing an integral role in limb development, Hox genes produce transcription factors that regulate gene expression within embryos, subsequently impacting morphogenesis and the location of the spine and limbs. Playing such a crucial role in developmental genetics, investigations into transcription factors within Hox genes have been a recent topic of interest in ... Read More