July 28, 2008


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Posted July 28, 2008

LEWISBURG, Pa. — Bucknell University students participating in summer undergraduate research projects will present a poster session Thursday, July 31, from 3 to 5 p.m. in the Center Room of the Elaine Langone Center at Bucknell.

Research topics include the honeybee deformed wing virus, acid deposition on Buffalo Creek, neural activity modeling related to seizure activity in the brain, algorithms for realistic scene illumination in computer graphics, and White Nose Syndrome in bats.

The annual event highlights the summer research of students and their faculty advisers in astronomy, biology, chemistry, geology, mathematics and physics as well as engineering, and is sponsored by the Bucknell chapter of Sigma Xi, the scientific research society.

Student researchers include:
• Gary Deng, cell biology/biochemistry sophomore, is researching the honeybee deformed wing virus, working with Marie Pizzorno to manipulate the virus genome in order to understand how the virus infects bees.

• Leo Zacks, biology senior, and Matt McTammany are studying the effects of atmospheric acid deposition on Buffalo Creek to collect water quality data prior to construction of an acid-treatment system in the stream's headwaters and to determine whether downstream sections of the stream are episodically affected during rainstorms. Zacks has sampled water chemistry along an 8-mile section of Buffalo Creek and measured water acidity during several high flow periods this summer.

• Nate Crosby, biomedical engineering junior, is working with Joe Tranquillo and Dr. Mark Stecker (Geisinger Medical Center) on mathematical modeling of neural activity to better understand seizure activity in the brain.

• Eli Bowen, computer science and engineering junior, is testing and developing algorithms for faster rendering of realistic scene illumination in computer graphics with Josh Steinhurst.

DeeAnn Reeder, assistant professor of biology, is advising three student projects related to White Nose Syndrome, a mystery disease affecting bats in the Northeast: John Kobilis, biology junior, and biology graduate student Roymon Jacob, immune function in bats; Amanda Kronquist, neuroscience junior, Kim Weaver, cell biology/biochemistry junior, and biology sophomore Sara Alfano, wound-healing rates in free-ranging bats; and Kaitlyn Piatt, biology junior, foraging and social behaviors in Bucknell's captive colony of big brown bats.

Other topics are mathematical modeling of fluid flows, experiments in magnetic resonance of polarized atoms and nuclei, signatures of turbulence in star-forming regions of molecular clouds, laser spectroscopic studies of atmospheric heating and cooling processes, synthesis and characterization of novel polymers, applications of capillary electrophoresis, environmental reactions at clay surfaces, protein structure and function, and theoretical modeling of optical interference effects using quantum field theory. 

Contact: Office of Communications

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