Molecular Mechanisms Leading to FXTAS Development and Therapeutic Perspectives

By Candice Vieira, Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, ’17

Author’s Note:

After researching Fragile X-associated tremor/ataxia syndrome (FXTAS) treatment methods for a UWP 104F assignment, I learned that current FXTAS therapeutics is limited to symptomatic treatment. Most articles emphasized the need to better characterize the molecular mechanisms underlying FXTAS development to develop drugs specifically for FXTAS. Therefore, I questioned what researchers currently know regarding molecular events that lead to FXTAS signs and symptoms and how this knowledge can aid in drug therapies. This motivated me to prepare a literary review, intended to educate and inform practicing clinicians, especially neurologists and psychologists, about recent findings and the future directions for FXTAS research. For this assignment, we were expected to synthesize recent articles and provide relevant information for clinical practice. Specifically, I wanted clinicians to gain a better understanding of a primary focus within FXTAS research—molecular triggering events—and importantly, how this research relates to clinical treatment of FXTAS.

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To Infinity and Beyond: A Review of “The Life of Pi, and Other Infinities” by Natalie Angier

By Lo Tuan, Neurobiology, Physiology, and Behavior and Managerial Economics, ’17

Author’s Note:

I wrote this review as an assignment for a UWP course that investigates the role of science in society using different lenses and models. It was a scintillating experience engaging in scientific reading and writing while evaluating the relationship between science and society. This paper proved to be a useful exercise for me to communicate scientific information to the general public in a clear and accessible manner.

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Our Newest Neighbors?

By Nicole Strossman, Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, ‘17

Author’s Note:

“I decided to write this piece after seeing news headlines announcing the potential of life on planets in a nearby star system. As this is a topic that fascinates many people, myself included, I decided to investigate the new discoveries. While the research on the particular planet mentioned in the various news articles is still fairly new, it has brought about renewed interest in the search for life beyond our planet. This article aims to describe what these recent discoveries are, and show the implications they have for astronomers.”

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Life Science According to Trump: An Examination of Claims and Facts

By Wren Greaney, History major, Biological Sciences & Community Development minor, ’17

Author’s Note:

I decided to write this article on the Wednesday after the presidential election. After the long whirlwind of campaigning, it seemed that many unanswered questions lingered. Health is one of the most immediate concerns for many people, and when accurate information about health exists, I think it should be provided so that individuals can make informed decisions. This article is an attempt to address a small fraction of the health concerns that were raised during the course of the presidential campaign.” Continue reading Life Science According to Trump: An Examination of Claims and Facts

A Glimpse into Mitochondrial Replacement Techniques

By Rachel Hull, Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, ’19

Author’s Note

I decided to write this piece after stumbling across several news articles in October of this year heralding the birth of the first ever ‘three-parent baby’ and thinking to myself that something seemed to be missing in these stories. What started as some casual digging into the history of three-parent babies soon turned into a more general investigation of assisted reproductive technologies. The information I found was not only interesting but also very pertinent, as new advances could increase the role these technologies play in our society.

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Blueberries and Breast Cancer Treatment

By Shivani Kamal, Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, ’17

Author’s Note:

“I originally became interested in the potential anti-cancer effects of blueberries when I took a nutrition seminar my first year at UC Davis. Curious about further research on its effects on breast cancer, I decided to write an article to educate other students about it. Many of us either have a family member or know someone diagnosed with cancer, so spreading knowledge of current cancer research is an important reminder of support, hope, and determination to individuals and their families.” Continue reading Blueberries and Breast Cancer Treatment

“Let’s Take a Deep Breath”: Managing Hypertension by Bridging the Clinic-Home Healthcare Gap

Independent Project Findings

By Harsh Sharma,  Neurobiology, Physiology, and Behavior, ’13

Author’s Note:

“I wrote this paper to share my independent project takeaways with everyone who is interested in, or a part of, the healthcare field. This project taught me a lot about what we can do to help our patients get the most out of the clinic they go to. As you gain experiences in the medical field, think about the services your organization offers and how you can use your skills to enhance those services to the next level!”

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Mitofusin 2 as a Mammalian ER-Mitochondria Tether? A Review

By Lauren Uchiyama, Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, ’17

Author’s Note:

“I chose to write this piece to familiarize myself with the most recent scientific literature on Mitofusin 2 for my UWP104E Writing in Science class. I was preparing to apply for the Undergraduate Research Center Provost Undergraduate Fellowship and felt this would be a good way to inform myself about a protein related to my own undergraduate project in Jodi Nunnari’s lab.  I was puzzled that different experiments could lead to such conflicting findings on the same issue; thus, writing this review was an invaluable learning experience for me as both an undergraduate student and scientist.”

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Critical Factors Involved in the Relationship Between Cannabis and Schizophrenia

By Carly Cheung, Microbiology, ’17

Author’s Note:

“I wrote this piece for my UWP 104F: ‘Writing in the Health Professions’ class with Professor Walsh in Winter 2016. Our assignment was to examine a health related research question and explore the subject in a quarter-long research and synthesis process. I decided to write about Schizophrenia because I realized that I knew close to nothing accurate about people with mental health illnesses. Lack of understanding of the disease can contribute to stigmatization of these patients and cause further psychological harm. On my way to demystifying Schizophrenia, one of the most researched relationship I found was that of Marijuana and Schizophrenia. Throughout this process, I not only gained valuable knowledge on this topic, but I also learned to appreciate the various methods scientists developed to study the mechanism of this multi-layered and abstract disease.”

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