MICDS Science STARS Shine

MICDS was pleased to earn the distinction of having more students than any other St. Louis area high school selected to participate in the 2011 STARS (Students and Teachers as Research Scientists) summer program hosted by the University of Missouri-St. Louis. Congratulations to participants Gowri Kalugotla ’12, Hayley Landman ’13, Tally Portnoi ’13, Suyash Raj ’12, Harry Seo ’12, Tyler Stratton ’12, Luke Xing ’12 and Casey Zuccarello ’13.

These eight students were among 79 students from 36 St. Louis area high schools chosen to participate in the six-week STARS program. STARS pairs biologists, chemists, engineers, medical researchers, psychologists and public health experts from The Donald Danforth Plant Science Center, Saint Louis University, Solae, Washington University and the University of Missouri-St. Louis with student apprentices in laboratory settings to conduct research projects.

This year’s program, “Experiencing the Scientific Enterprise,” took place from June 6 through July 15 at UMSL. In addition to conducting research and presenting papers, students took part in career workshops, attended lectures by leading scientists from the St. Louis community, and participated in social activities.

MICDS STARS participants conducted and presented the following research working with their respective scientists:

Gowri Kalugotla, MICDS, “Molecular Cloning and Characterization of EC_Contig5475, Potential Methyltransferase in Eschscholzia californica”, Dr. Toni Kutchan, Danforth Plant Science Center

Hayley Landman, MICDS, “Invasive Forest Species in Tropical Rainforest Detected by Space-borne Satellite Remote Sensing”, Dr. Abuduwasiti Wulamu, Saint Louis University

Tally Portnoi, MICDS, “Nonlinear Dynamics of Ethanol Biofuel Cells” Dr. Istvan Kiss, Saint Louis University

Suyash Raj, MICDS, “Momentary Equilibrium Phenomena in Adsorption TAP-Studies” Dr. Grigoriy Yablonsky, Washington University

Harry Seo, MICDS, “Optimization of Solar Cell Parameters for Maximum Power Output Using Genetic Algorithm”, Dr. Ramesh Agarwal, Washington University

Tyler Stratton, MICDS, “Computational Analysis of Base-stacking Interactions in RNA Nucleotides” Dr. Brent Znosko, Saint Louis University

Luke Xing, MICDS, “The Effects of Cross Domain Route Priming”, Dr. David A. Balota, Washington University

Casey Zuccarello, MICDS, “The Study of Photoreactive Polymers Through the Use of Solid-state Nuclear Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy”, Dr. Sophia Hayes, Washington University