Students earn prestigious fellowship

05/25/12 Portland, Ore.

The Division of Environmental & Biomolecular Systems (EBS) at Oregon Health & Science University’s Institute of Environmental Health  is pleased to announce that three of their graduate students were recently awarded prestigious fellowships.

Ella ChanThe National Institute of Health awarded Chio Mui (Ella) Chan the Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award. Chan, a post-doctoral researcher working in the lab of Peter Zuber, will use the two-year postdoctoral fellowship to investigate the mechanism of proteolytic control that is applied in response to oxidative stress.

Infectious microorganisms must defend themselves from stress brought about by toxic agents such as oxidants produced by the host immune system. Bacteria can regulate their response to oxidants by precisely and rapidly changing the levels of specific factors that govern the processes that prevent and/or alleviate stress.

Chan will characterize the system of control that determines the concentration of an important regulator of the bacterial stress response, the protein called Spx. She will also define in detail the structure and function of the factors that control the degradation of Spx before and during recovery from oxidant-induced stress.

jesse lopezJesse Lopez was selected for the Department of Energy Computational Science Graduate Fellowship (DOE CSGF). Lopez is studying computational modeling with his advisor Antonio Baptista, director of the Center for Coastal Margin Observation & Prediction (CMOP) and OHSU professor.

The fellowship provides Lopez with outstanding benefits and opportunities as he develops high performance computing simulations of estuary and coastal areas that may aid scientific understanding of ecosystem processes.

Lopez will receive a yearly stipend and the opportunity to participate in a highly regarded annual fellowship conference in Washington, D.C. He will also have the unique experience of completing a three-month practicum at one of 17 DOE laboratory sites. 

michelle maierMichelle Maier has been accepted into the National Science Foundation East Asia and Pacific Summer Institutes for U.S. Graduate Students (EAPSI) 2012 program at Toho University in Japan. The fellowship will enable her to collaborate with international researchers in the field of phytoplankton-chytrid ecology.

Maier is a doctoral student studying microbial interactions in the Columbia River coastal margin with her advisor Tawnya Peterson, an OHSU assistant professor and CMOP research scientist.

Maier will spend eight weeks performing research in Japan, be introduced to the science and science policy infrastructure of Japan, and orientated to the Japanese culture and language. The goals of the program are to introduce students to Japanese science and engineering in the context of a research laboratory, and to initiate personal relationships that will better enable them to collaborate with foreign counterparts in the future.