Nine UGA doctoral students received scholarships worth a total of $48,000 from the Atlanta chapter of the Achievement Rewards for College Scientists Foundation for the 2006-2007 academic year.
Founded in Los Angeles in 1958, the ARCS Foundation is dedicated to helping meet the country’s needs for scientists and engineers by providing scholarships to academically outstanding university students. UGA award recipients are selected through the Biomedical and Health Sciences Institute.
“We are grateful for the financial support that ARCS has provided to 32 UGA doctoral students in biomedical and health sciences since 2001, for a total of more than a quarter of a million dollars,” said UGA President Michael F. Adams. “Achieving excellence and successfully addressing society’s challenges require that we work in partnership, and the support that ARCS offers to students at UGA and other colleges and universities is a critical component of that partnership.”
The UGA ARCS Foundation Scholars and their interests are:
- Christopher Black is exploring how exercise may improve the health of individuals with spinal cord injury.
- Kara Dyckman is using neuroimaging techniques to study changes in brain activity as participants practice motor tasks to aid in developing treatment programs for people with mental illnesses or brain injuries.
- Sarah Eisenstein is using an animal model to examine the relationship between cannabinoids, the body’s own marijuana-like chemicals, and psychiatric disorders, such as schizophrenia.
- Tannia Gutierrez is researching how cannabinoids aid in suppressing some of the symptoms associated with pain induced by nerve injury.
- Benjamin Hasselbring is studying the gliding motility of Mycoplasma pneumoniae, a bacterium that causes bronchitis and pneumonia.
- Dawn Penn is researching the role of leptin, a hormone produced by the fat cells in regulating fat cell growth using in vitro cell culture and models of genetic and diet induced obesity.
- Brianna Peterson is studying the abilities of the enzyme calcium-independent phospholipase A2 in mediating brain cell death caused by drugs of abuse, such as alcohol and cocaine.
- Rebecca Tomlinson is investigating the biogenesis and intracellular trafficking of the enzyme telomerase. The enzyme is active in almost 90 percent of human cancers, making it a promising anti-cancer target.
- Laura Williams is studying the distribution and diversity of plasmids in the foodborne pathogen, Salmonella enterica.