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Archer’s annual STEM Symposium is an opportunity for Los Angeles high school students who have completed independent or small group projects in STEM to present their findings. Students are invited to present their research in the fields of molecular biology, chemistry, physics, and engineering.

The Archer RISE Award honors exceptional young women for their innovative scientific research or engineering design projects that further existing knowledge or develop solutions to pressing scientific challenges. Finalists for the RISE Award are noted in throughout the online program and will be awarded at lunch on May 21.

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Breakout Session C [clear filter]
Saturday, May 21
 

11:55am

A Comparative Analysis of Chemiluminescence and Bioluminescence: Nature's Light Show

Bioluminescence has broad and unexpected commercial applications, from its proposed use in streetlights to crop growth indicators. In our research, we are exploring both the processes and the proteins involved in bioluminescence. The first portion of our experimentation will consist of analyzing known concentrations of chemiluminescent solutions, attempting to utilize a visible spectrophotometer to understand and quantify luminescence and generate a calibration curve relating concentration to chemiluminescence. We will then study the process of bioluminescence in dinoflagellates and vibrio fischeri and take data in the same manner, hoping to both quantify the proteins in the lab and learn about their mechanism of action. By using a lux meter in a light-controlled enclosure we will analyze exactly how exposure to light and darkness over time affects the organisms' ability to luminesce. The concluding portion of our research will consist of analyzing how pollutants could affect the brightness and longevity of dinoflagellate and vibrio fischeri luminescence.


Exhibitors
AD

Andi Delgado

The Webb Schools
The Webb Schools; Grade 10
EH

Emily Hupe

The Webb Schools
The Webb Schools; Grade 10


Saturday May 21, 2016 11:55am - 12:10pm
Room 123

11:55am

Assembly of an easy-to-modify photosynthetic bacterial chassis.

The goal of the project is to move genes for Photosystem II from the algae Chlamydomonas reinhardtii into E. coli bacteria for use as a hydrogen-producer and potential biofuel. PSII is capable of photo-electrolyzing water efficiently and inexpensively with sunlight. Within PSII, enzymes capture photons of light to energize electrons that are then transferred through a variety of coenzymes and cofactors to reduce plastoquinone to plastoquinol. The energized electrons are replaced by oxidizing water to form molecular oxygen and hydrogen ions, which can be used as fuel and for other uses. C. reinhardtii was selected due to its ability, under certain circumstances to switch from oxygen to hydrogen production. However, C. reinhardtii is slow-growing and difficult to manipulate relative to well-studied bacteria like E. coli, so we have begun the process of moving the core genes of PSII into E. coli, beginning with genes psbD and psbT.


Exhibitors
VC

Victoria Chen

Alverno High School; Grade 10
LC

Laura Chen

Alverno High School
Alverno High School; Grade 10
EW

Evina Wang

Alverno High School
Alverno High School; Grade 10


Saturday May 21, 2016 11:55am - 12:10pm
Room 218

11:55am

Is Phosphorus the Missing Ingredient for Bioremediation Success?

Oil spills have proven to be catastrophic messes that are difficult to clean up. Skims, booms, in situ burning, and chemical dispersants are a few of the many methods to remove the pollution; yet they are not the safest or most effective. Bioremediation–a naturally occurring process that breaks down the oil– can clear nearly 100% of the spill and does not harm the spill site[?]s native organisms, but the bioremediators, such as the bacteria–Alcanivorax borkumensis –are too slow to show immediate success. With the presence of specific nutrients, bioremediation has the potential to become the leading cleanup method. The effect of nutrients available to Alcanivorax borkumensis in its growth media was tested. Previous work has shown the importance of nitrogen supplied to the bacteria in different forms, whether it is provided as a nitrate (KNO3) or the organic nitrogen present in the peptone ingredient of the standard growth media. It has also been shown that phosphorus is an important supplement for bacterial bioremediation. Moreover, fertilizers that provide nitrogen and phosphorus have improved the bioremediation effect of Alcanivorax. However, studies looking at changes in solely the phosphorus concentration available to the bacteria are limited. Using a broth to recreate oceanic conditions, my work explores how varying the phosphorus ingredient can influence overall bacterial growth of the responsible bioremediator– Alcanivorax borkumensis.


Exhibitors
KM

Kristina Mercolino

Flintridge Sacred Heart Academy
Flintridge Sacred Heart Academy; Grade 12


Saturday May 21, 2016 11:55am - 12:10pm
Room 217

11:55am

Muscadine Grape Seed Extract as a Treatment for Obesity in Tub-1 C. elegans

The objective of this research was to test if Muscadine Grape seed extract had an effect on lowering triglyceride levels in C. elegans. By testing Muscadine Grape seed extract's effect on lowering triglyceride content levels, Muscadine Grape seed extract[?]s potential as a treatment for obesity could be determined.For this research both the N2 wild type and tub-1 mutant C. elegans, which model the presence of obesity in the body, were utilized. The tub-1 mutant, which lacked the ability to regulate lipid or fat accumulation and as a result had excess body fat, showed the effects of Muscadine Grape seed extract as a treatment for obesity by lowering the C. elegan’s fat levels. This experiment used a Triglyceride Colorimetric Assay which measured Triglyceride, the main constituent of animal fat, amounts in the body. In the assay, Triglyceride was broken down into free fatty acids and glycerol. Then the plate reader read the sample to determine the amount of glycerol there was in each well, which correlated to how much Triglyceride there was in each well. Each well contained homogenized C. elegans fed either 5%, 10%, or 15% Muscadine Grape seed extract or no Muscadine Grape seed extract at all (Control). This meant that the assay showed the difference in triglyceride content between the different doses of Muscadine Grape seed extract, determining if Muscadine Grape seed extract was treatment for obesity and lowered Triglyceride levels in a dose dependent manner.


Exhibitors
IH

Iman Hussain

The Archer School for Girls
The Archer School for Girls; Grade 12


Saturday May 21, 2016 11:55am - 12:10pm
Room 216

11:55am

The Digit Fidget
The Digit Fidget/DigiFidge is a fidgeting device, designed for discreet and silent use underneath your desk, requiring only one hand to operate without looking. It’s a tool, meant for the promotion of higher concentration in ADHD users with a tendency towards hyperactivity. The DigiFidge slides onto the edge of typical classroom desk and is played with from the bottom of the box. It provides the mindless task of poking at a ball (inside the box) with your finger through holes in the bottom of varying shapes. The DigiFidge is based on the current advancements and research into the science behind ADHD. Findings show that hyperactive children with attention problems focus better while fidgeting and are much more productive as multitaskers. By giving students a way to channel their hyperactivity through intentional fidgeting, in a way that is not disruptive to the rest of the class, the DigiFidge helps them center their brains on the primary task of focusing in class. For children with ADHD, simply concentrating during a lecture or taking notes is a difficult task. This device will make classes at school more manageable and, pending further research: regular use should lead to improved performance and classroom demeanor. It can be fixed to the desk, which eliminates the risk of it falling on the floor and it is portable from class to class. The DigiFidge is the future of promoting higher levels of focus and concentration in users with ADHD while remaining discreet.

Exhibitors
CK

Caroline Kester

Viewpoint School
Viewpoint School; Grade 11


Saturday May 21, 2016 11:55am - 12:10pm
Room 125

11:55am

The Effects of D-limonene on the Inhibition of Angiogenesis in the Chick Chorioallantoic Membrane

Many deadly tumors are associated with the overexpression of angiogenesis, the growth of blood vessels from preexisting vasculature. Angiogenesis is overexpressed in vascular tumors, such as breast cancer, glioblastoma, and pancreatic cancer. When angiogenesis is overexpressed, tumor expansion and metastasis occurs. Previous experiments have shown that the inhibition of angiogenesis suppresses tumor growth and metastasis. Antiangiogenic agents, products used to inhibit angiogenesis in tumors, are classified by their ability to target blood supply to tumors by inhibiting their signaling pathways. The vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) is one of the signaling pathways for angiogenic targets. Preliminary research has suggested that D-limonene, an oil extracted from a citrus rind, decreases the concentration of PVF-1 (a model for VEGF) in Caenorhabditis elegans at a 50% concentration. This experiment aimed to study the effect of 50% D-limonene concentration on the inhibition of angiogenesis in the Chick Chorioallantoic Membrane. D-limonene was analyzed with the CAM Assay for its efficacy as a natural antiangiogenic agent: the response of blood vessels to D-limonene was quantified microscopically and macroscopically.


Exhibitors
AB

Ari Brown

The Archer School for Girls
The Archer School for Girls; Grade 12


Saturday May 21, 2016 11:55am - 12:10pm
Room 124

11:55am

Water Monitoring System with Adjustable Aerator

The Archer School for Girls’ InvenTeam has invented a compact faucet attachment that monitors water usage and encourages eco-friendly, water-saving behaviors. Our device has an adjustable aerator to enable the most efficient water use and an integrated digital water meter which compares usage to the recommended amount. It also has a thread adapter to ensure that it fits on most household sinks.

Our invention promotes two primary functions which promote conservation and awareness. Users will be able to input the number of people in their house and compare the amount of water they use to locally recommended amounts. The aerator will allow users to adjust water pressure and flow pattern for most efficient use. For example, the amount of water released on the hand-wash setting will be significantly less than that of the dishwashing setting. The invention will encourage efficient, conscientious water usage to help mitigate the effects of the California drought, one home at a time.

Exhibitors
RE

Rachel Erickson

The Archer School for Girls
The Archer School for Girls; Grade 11
AF

Alexandra Feldman

The Archer School for Girls; Grade 10
CG

Claire Germano

The Archer School for Girls
The Archer School for Girls; Grade 10
UH

Uma Halsted

The Archer School for Girls
The Archer School for Girls; Grade 10
IH

Iman Hussain

The Archer School for Girls
The Archer School for Girls; Grade 12
AI

Aviva Intveld

Student, The Archer School for Girls
The Archer School for Girls; Grade 9
RK

Ruby Krull

The Archer School for Girls
The Archer School for Girls; Grade 10
IM

Iman Mohammed

The Archer School for Girls
The Archer School for Girls; Grade 10
IM

Isabella Moncada

The Archer School for Girls
The Archer School for Girls; Grade 12
AM

Annie Moore

The Archer School for Girls
The Archer School for Girls; Grade 11
CO

Carina Oriel

The Archer School for Girls
The Archer School for Girls; Grade 12
EP

Elyse Pollack

The Archer School for Girls
The Archer School for Girls; Grade 10
MR

Marcela Riddick

The Archer School for Girls
The Archer School for Girls; Grade 12
AR

Annabelle Robertson

The Archer School for Girls; Grade 11
AR

Ava Rothenberg

The Archer School for Girls
The Archer School for Girls; Grade 6
IS

Isabella Simanowitz

The Archer School for Girls
The Archer School for Girls; Grade 10
CT

Ciel Torres

The Archer School for Girls
The Archer School for Girls; Grade 11
MW

Maya Wernick

The Archer School for Girls
The Archer School for Girls; Grade 10
IW

Isabelle Wilson

The Archer School for Girls
The Archer School for Girls; Grade 11
LW

Lola Wolf

The Archer School for Girls
The Archer School for Girls; Grade 9
CZ

Claire Zeller

The Archer School for Girls
The Archer School for Girls; Grade 11


Saturday May 21, 2016 11:55am - 12:10pm
IDEAlab