A Celebration of Scholarship

2008 Poster Session

Celebration 2008 Poster Session Abstracts


DATE: Thursday, March 13, 2008

TIME: 7:00 to 8:30 PM

PLACE: Dolan Science Center: Atrium, East and West first floor hallways, and E135


*Main presenter(s)

“Buruli Ulcer”
*Jennifer Carlson and *Kyle Chippy, Undergraduates; Faculty Sponsor: Dr. James Lissemore, Biology

Buruli Ulcer, an infectious disease caused by the bacteria Mycobacterium ulcerans, is the 3rd most common mycobacterium infection in humans. If not treated early enough an infection can destroy nerves, appendages, organs, and blood vessels which can cause severe functional disabilities. The bacteria are thought to live in slow-moving bodies of water in tropical to subtropical regions and are transmitted to humans either through a pre-existing wound or through a possible insect vector. Not much is known about the epidemiology and pathology of the disease. The disease is most prevalent in West Africa, specifically Benin, Ghana, and Ivory Coast. The disease disproportionately affects children and people living in poor rural communities. Treatment is very expensive and most of the time involves surgery. Current programs focus on early detection and treatment. In 1998 WHO established the Global Buruli Ulcer Initiative.

“Soil-transmitted Helminthiasis”
*Nanette Kendall and *Pete Rembusch, Undergraduates; Faculty Sponsor: Dr. James Lissemore, Biology

Soil-transmitted helminthiasis (STH) is a disease that refers to infestation with one or more types of parasitic worms, which include Ascaris lumbricoides (roundworm) and Trichuris trichiura (whipworm). STH infections are transmitted primarily by fecal-oral contamination, through ingestion of the parasitic eggs. STH has a global prevalence which totals over 2 billion infections and is concentrated in tropical and subtropical areas due to the optimal moisture and temperature conditions for the parasitic eggs. STH infections cause more disability than death and globally result in 39.0 million disability adjusted life years (DALYs) per year. These two parasitic infections cause symptoms that range from nutrient deficiency and anemia to intestinal blockage and fatality. Treatment goals include de-worming with chemotherapy and control of the associated morbidity. Since there is no vaccine for STH infections and re-infection is common, prevention initiatives focus on breaking the transmission route of the parasites through improved sanitation practices.

“Literature Review: Psychosocial Factors Affecting Bariatric Surgery Patients”
*Jennifer L. Hauschildt, Undergraduate; Dr. Amy K. Windover, Department of Psychiatry and Psychology, The Cleveland Clinic

Throughout a ten week period at the Cleveland Clinic, I assisted health psychologist Dr. Amy Windover on various projects. One significant project I carried out was the completion of an Institutional Review Board (IRB) application for a database of bariatric patient information. Once IRB approval is obtained, Dr. Windover plans to use the database to analyze which psychosocial factors affect bariatric patients and to what degree. As part of the IRB application process, the IRB required the submission of a summary of relevant literature describing any past research. This poster includes significant pieces of the literature review pertaining to the many psychosocial factors which differentially affect bariatric surgery patients. For the purpose of the poster, I will present only three psychosocial variables of notable importance, which I excerpted from the larger literature review. Funded by the Huntington/Codrington Foundation.

“Diarrheal Disease & Rotavirus Abstract”
*Jeff Villanueva and *Andrew Reeves, Undergraduates; Faculty Sponsor: Dr. James Lissemore, Biology

Diarrheal Disease is a disease characterized by loose, watery stools and 3 or more bowel movements per day. There are 4 million cases of acute diarrhea per year accounting for nearly 2 million deaths in children under 5. It can be caused by bacteria, virus, or parasite. Eighty-eight percent of diarrheal diseases can be avoided through proper hygiene and better sanitation. Diarrhea is most prevalent in people with compromised immunity and kills through dehydration. Rotavirus is the most prevalent cause and accounts for 600,000 childhood deaths per year. Rotavirus is transmitted via fecal-oral contact and infects enterocytes of the small intestine. Infection alters the shape of intestinal villi, preventing the absorption of water and nutrients. Groups such as the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and others are involved in discovering new treatments, prevention methods, and vaccines.

*Nagua Sarkiss and *Dan Kelly, Undergraduates; Faculty Sponsor: Dr. James Lissemore, Biology

Leprosy is a chronic disease caused by the bacillus Mycobacterium leprae. Mycobacterium leprae was the first Mycobacterium to be identified as pathogenic in 1873. The infection is not highly communicable and methods of transmission remain unclear. There are three forms of the disease, tuberculoid, intermediate, and lepromatous, progressing from mild to more severe symptoms all of which stem from nerve damage. Leprosy is characterized by nerve damage caused by the inflammatory immune response to bacillus-filled granulomas in the nerve tissue. This disease is extremely rare in developed countries but remains endemic in several developing countries that experience warm tropical climates. Transmission is thought to be related to poor sanitation and hygiene which are common characteristics of these countries. Leprosy is curable with multi-drug therapy although nerve damage is not reversible. It is for this reason that early diagnosis and treatment are important.


“Quality of Life For Healthy Executives Internationally”
*Ashley Sandella, Undergraduate; Jerry Kiffer, Director of Executive Health, Cleveland Clinic

This four-year long study investigated 3,334 participants on the quality of their lives. The participants were all considered healthy executives and were recruited on an international level. The quality of their lives was tested using ten different aspects in a questionnaire, ‘Pillars of a Balanced Life,’ in which they rated each aspect using a Likert Scale of 0-10. About half of the population (N = 1704) was also tested on an 11th aspect, overall quality of life. A one-way ANOVA was conducted on each of the eleven aspects and Tukey post-hoc tests indicated that the overall quality of life of Latin Americans is significantly greater than the overall quality of life of Canadians. These results suggest that more research should be conducted, especially in comparing collectivistic cultures (like Latin-American cultures), happiness and well-being to individualistic cultures (like Canadians or the U.S.), and what factors may account for these differences.

*Jessica Weibley and *Chad Lucas, Undergraduates; Faculty Sponsor: Dr. James Lissemore, Biology

Poliomyelitis is an enterovirus that inhabits the gastrointestinal tract. Polio is the characteristic effect of the virus on the spinal cord, which can lead to paralysis from the damage to the nerve cells. Polio has been eradicated from all industrialized countries, and only remains in four endemic countries: Afghanistan, India, Nigeria, and Pakistan, these are also places where poverty exists. The only reservoir for the polio virus is humans, in which it enters the body through the fecal-oral route, usually in areas with poor sanitation. The greatest risk factor for contracting polio is by not being immunized against the virus, in which there are two types of vaccines. There is no cure for the polio virus, so the treatment aim is to aid in recovery, alleviate any pain, and prevent complications. Widespread global polio eradication is a continued effort of the World Health Assembly.

*Courtney Baas and *Christina Cocca, Undergraduates; Faculty Sponsor: Dr. James Lissemore, Biology

Leishmaniasis. a double strained parasitic disease caused by the bite of a Phlebotomine sandfly, affects either the skin or internal organs of humans and vertebrates. Both cutaneous and visceral strains are distributed in 72 developing countries, 13 being the least developed in the world. There are 12 million people currently infected and an estimated 2 million people develop new infections annually. Both strains are found in Sudan and Brazil and disproportionately affect children, HIV positive people, and active night workers. Visceral infection causes skin lesions and deformities, while the cutaneous infection causes swollen organs, anemia, hepatomegaly. Current methods of prevention include reduction of outdoor exposure in the evening, use of insecticide treated bed nets, application of synthetic insecticide to clothing, implementation of elimination programs, and improve the availability of cost effective materials to manage cases and control the disease.

*Tara Ford and *Ann Awadalla, Undergraduates; Faculty Sponsor: Dr. James Lissemore, Biology

Hookworm is an intestinal parasite, transmitted via direct contact with soil infested with feces. The two species of hookworm which infect humans are Ancylostome duodenale and Necator americanus. Distribution is primarily concentrated in tropical and subtropical areas. Hookworm infections have a global prevalence of 740 million with the highest prevalence in Sub-Saharan Africa and Papua New Guinea. The prevalence of infection increases gradually during childhood and reaches its maximum in early adult life. The intensity of the infection is directly related to the number of worms in the intestine. Symptoms include anemia, abdominal pain, diarrhea, protein deficiency, difficulty breathing, bloating, weakness, pale complexion, cognitive impairments, and heart failure. About 22 million DALYs are lost each year due to infections. Current treatment consists of two anthelmintics, Mebendazole and Albendazole. The practice of good sanitary habits, limiting exposure to the eggs and larva, wearing shoes and access to clean water is crucial for prevention.


“Provence Through the Eyes of French Painters: Vincent Van Gogh, Henri Matisse and Raoul Dufy and Paul Cézanne”
Faculty Sponsor: Dr. Hélenè Sanko, Classical & Modern Languages & Cultures

Undergraduate students will present one individual work of art and explain how one must “read” a painting.
*Kara Alloco: Les Tounesols de Vincent Van Gogh (1853-1891)
*Pamela Castricone: La Nuit Etoilée sur le Rhône de Vincent Van Gogh (1853-1891)
*Daniel Deptowicz: Paysage provençal de Vincent Van Gogh (1853-19891)
*Joseph DiFranco: Terrasse de Café le soir à Arles de Vincent Van Gogh (1853-1891)
*Laura Fletcher: Le soir en Provence de Vincent Van Gogh (1853-1891)
*Leila Hojat: Madame Matisse d’Henri Matisse (1869-1954)
*Jennifer Lamparelli: La Montagne Sainte Victoire de Paul Cézanne (1839-1906)
*Norah O’Neil: Harmonie en Rouge d’Henri Matisse (1869-1954)
*Caroline Stevens: Champs de blé au soleil levant de Vincent Van Gogh (1853-1891)
*Kenneth Tubbs: Paysage avec maisons et bétail de Raoul Dufy (1877-1953)
*Jacqueline Wilson: Maison et arbres (1890) “Refuge” de Paul Cézanne(1839-1906)
Ryan Baker, FR 407/FR498: Translation: “Guidelines from Musée du Louvre, Paris :
How to read a painting”

“Transportation into a Narrative as a Mediator of Negative Attitude Change toward Seeking Psychotherapy”
*Anthony Tarescavage, Undergraduate; Dr. Janet D. Larsen, Psychology
Narrative transportation is the level of engrossment into a narrative that is influenced by imagery, emotional involvement, suspense, etc. This study examined transportation as a mediator in the persuasiveness of a narrative in changing attitudes. Participants (N=71) were presented with an experimental story negatively slanted toward psychotherapy or a control story. Half the participants reading each story had a distracter task designed to inhibit transportation. They were then administered the Inventory of Attitudes towards Seeking Mental Health Services. The experimental story did not significantly affect scores compared to the control. The distracter failed to significantly inhibit transportation scores. These results suggest a more effective manipulation of transportation and a more persuasive story are needed to properly test transportation as a mediator in the persuasiveness of a narrative in changing attitudes.

“Victoria Symptom Validity Test Performance in Patients with Intractable Epilepsy”
Catherine J. Belzile, Undergraduate; Dr. Jessica S. Chapin, Dr. Richard I. Naugle, and Dr. Robyn M. Busch, Psychiatry and Psychology, Cleveland Clinic Foundation

The present study investigated the relationship between preoperative VSVT hard item score and intelligence and memory performance in 236 non-litigating patients (109 males; 127 females) with intractable epilepsy. A series of one-way ANOVAs showed significant group effects for WAIS-III Verbal IQ (p < 0.0001), Performance IQ (p < 0.0001), Full Scale IQ (p < 0.0001), and Digit Span scores (p < 0.0001) as well as significant group effects on all WMS-III Memory Indices with t-tests demonstrating poorer VSVT performance associated with lower scores on cognitive tests (all p values < .01). The relationship between VSVT hard item score and education, age at seizure onset, and duration of epilepsy was also investigated. A significant negative correlation between duration of seizures and VSVT hard item score was found. Overall, lower performance on intellectual and memory measures and duration of seizures were associated with lower scores on the VSVT hard items.

“Insulin-like growth factor expression and urodynamic function after pudendal nerve injury in diabetic rats”
Hui Q. Pan, Principal Investigator; Dan Li Lin, Research Project Staff; Mei Kuang, Consultant; David Sypert, Research Technician; James Steward, Undergraduate; Raymond R. Rackley, Mentor, Consultant; Margot S. Damaser, Mentor, Consultant, Biomedical Engineering and Urology, Cleveland Clinic, & Louis Stokes Cleveland VA Medical Center

The objectives of this study were to determine if pudendal nerve (PN) injury in diabetic rats increases the severity of stress urinary incontinence symptoms and to determine if any altered responses are associated with insulin-like growth factor-I (IGF-1) and IGF binding protein-3 (IGFBP-3). Rats were divided into diabetic (DM), diuretic (DU), and control groups. Diabetes was induced in the DM group 8 weeks prior to PNC. DU rats received 5% sucrose drinking water. Half of the animals in each group underwent PN crush (PNC); the other half underwent sham PNC. All rats underwent conscious cystometry and leak point pressure (LPP) testing 11 days after PNC/sham PNC. Increased levels of IGF-I and decreased levels of IGFBP-3 were found in DM rats after PNC. LPP results showed that PNC led to decreased urethral resistance in DM rats. Thus, PN injury may play an important role in the development of incontinence in diabetics.

“Laser Optogalvanic transients in the 1s4 to 2pn excitations”
*Ryan Feaver, Undergraduate; Dr. Naveed Piracha, Physics

We report on the optogalvanic effect from the 1s4-2pn laser excitations using a Nd:YAG pumped dye laser. These time dependent optogalvanic signals induced by the 1s4-2pn laser excitations have been studied in the neon DC plasma. The transitions were recorded from hollow cathode discharge cells over a selection of currents. The decay rates related to all the four 1s levels have been derived by fitting the waveforms with a mathematical rate equation model. The signals were studied through various hollow cathode lamps and traces of Penning Ionization were found in the Mo-Ne and Ca-Ne hollow cathode lamps. The 1s4 transitions were found to be similar, yet the temporal signatures of the two transitions, 638 nm and 650 nm, related to the 2p7 and 2p8 upper levels, respectively, have been found different from the rest of the transitions.

“The Roles of Gender and Romantic Love in Regret over Sexual Debut”
*Korrin Vanderhoof, Undergraduate; Advisors: Dr. Janet Larsen, Psychology; Sarah Boyle, M.A, Case Center for Health Promotion Research

Research has suggested that adolescent females are more likely to feel guilt or shame in relation to sexual intercourse than males. The present study is based on data from a larger study of sexual behavior and attitudes in 1,632 urban 7th and 8th graders in a large Midwestern city. This study examines a sub-group of 396 sexually experienced adolescents asked about their feelings regarding their sexual debut and their first sexual partner. Results indicate gender was significantly associated with feelings of regret over sexual debut with girls more likely to report regret. Also, girls who reported being in love were less likely to report later regret over sexual debut while boys who reported being in love were more likely to regret sexual debut. These results suggest that social gender norms play a significant role in adolescents’ attitudes towards sexual debut. Potential implications of these findings are the necessity of a more emotional focus and acknowledgment of peer influences during sexual education programming.


“Further Understanding of Selenocysteine”
*Ryan Tappel, Undergraduate; Dr. Jodi Bubenik, Post Doctoral Fellow, Cell Biology, Cleveland Clinic; Dr. Donna Driscoll, Staff, Cell Biology, Cleveland Clinic

The Driscoll lab at the Lerner Center of the Cleveland Clinic focuses its research on the incorporation of selenium into proteins as selenocysteine, the 21st amino acid. Selenium is a micronutrient whose existence in proteins possesses health benefits including thyroid activity. Selenocysteine is placed into proteins via a recoding of the UGA stop codon during translation. This is accomplished in part by the presence of a stem loop in the 3′ untranslated region of RNA named the selenocysteine insertion sequence (SECIS). Recent studies involved mutations of a protein called SECIS-binding protein 2 (SPB2) which binds to the SECIS element in the process of recoding the UGA stop codon. These mutations lead to a decrease in SPB2 affinity for the SECIS element, which correlates to detrimental health benefits such as abnormal thyroid metabolism.

“Recategorization Due to Disability Information: A Test of the Continuum Model”
*Marisa R. Benich, Undergraduate; Dr. John H. Yost, Psychology

The continuum model posits that people engage in multiple stages of processing when forming impressions. When individuals first encounter a target, categorization occurs based on salient characteristics. When new information about the target is received, recategorization may occur when new information is inconsistent with original categorization. The present study examined the effect of having a disability on perceived academic success and character evaluations of a target. Sixty undergraduate students were randomly assigned to read a vignette of either a physically disabled male target or a non-physically disabled male target and were additionally randomly assigned to receive information regarding the target’s disability either first or last in the vignette. Results partially support the CM hypothesis of recategorization with regard to target evaluations of Self-Reliance. Ratings were highest when participants read a vignette about a physically disabled target and information about the disability was revealed last.

“Neisseria Meningitis”
*Crystal Uvalle and *Dana Stone, Undergraduates; Dr. James Lissemore, Biology

Meningitis is an infection that causes the meninges of the brain and spinal cord to become inflamed and creates pressure which leads to nerve damage. Meningitis can be caused by bacteria, fungus, or virus, but the bacteria meningococcus is the main cause of meningitis. 5 to 15% of adults carry N. Meningitis in their nasopharynx, leading to 1.2 million cases of bacterial meningitis and 135,000 deaths each year. Those found most at risk for infection are those living in crowded lodging, such as low-income housing. The African Meningitis Belt stretches from Senegal to Ethiopia, and is plagued with infection due to poor living conditions. Meningococcal bacteria enters the body through the nose and mouth and can settle for weeks or months without symptoms of nausea, fever, or vomiting occur. There are currently two vaccines available to fight infection; however, keeping healthy and avoiding exposure to any infected individual is pertinent.

“Tuning Effects of Hydrostatic Pressure on the Transport Properties of
Sb2-xCrxTe3 Thin Films”
*Matthew Bowers, Undergraduate; Advisor: Dr. Jeffrey Dyck, Physics
Y-J Chien, Z. Zhou, Graduate students; Dr. C. Uher, University of Michigan
Thin film samples of the MBE (Molecular Beam Epitaxy) grown diluted magnetic semiconductor Sb2-xCrxTe3 (doped with x=0.15) are being studied in an effort to understand the electrical and magnetic mechanisms that cause these and other similar DMS materials such as Sb1.85V0.15Te3 to transition into ferromagnetism at a certain temperature (Curie temperature, TC). Through observing the effects of applied hydrostatic pressure (atm, .67 GPa, and 1.38 GPa) on the transport properties of these materials, our hope is to identify a completely reversible means for significantly altering the carrier concentration without affecting other variables. This will allow us to more easily determine the specific mechanisms of magnetic interaction within these doped semiconductor materials. Here we have presented the more prominent findings of our research with Sb1.85Cr0.15Te3 as it pertains to several different variables and have made comparisons to the behavior of Sb1.85V0.15Te3 under similar pressures. Funded by Huntington/Codrington Foundation.

“Developing a Schizosaccharomyces Pombe Insertion Mutagenesis Library for High-Throughput Genetic Screening Applications”
Devin C. Hale(1,3),Undergraduate; Kurt Runge(1,2), Staff Advisor; Bo-Ruei Chen(1,2) Graduate Student; and Peter Ciolek(1), Undergraduate; Molecular Genetics(1), Lerner Research Institute, Cleveland Clinic Lerner College of Medicine, Department of Genetics(2), Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine, Cleveland, OH and Department of Chemistry (3), John Carroll University

The fission yeast Schizosaccharomyces pombe has several advantages as a model organism over the widely studied budding yeast Schizosaccharomyces cerevisiae. Most notably are biological similarities to human tissue cells. One disadvantage is that there is no library that contains mutants of all 4,600 genes in the S.pombe genome. By insertion mutagenesis every gene can be mutated. To do this a ura4+ insertion cassette was transformed into wild-type S.pombe cells and screened for insertion mutants using media without uracil and media containing 5-fluorotic acid a competitive inhibitor of ura4+. Nearly 10,000 mutant S.pombe strains have been identified thus far. Insertion sites will be identified by TAIL-PCR using the insertion cassette sequence. Two applications are utilizing the available mutant strains. First is an assay to identify genes that regulate chronological lifespan of S.pombe. Second, a high-throughput screen to determine genes associated with increased sensitivity or resistance to the chemotherapeutic drugs: doxorubicin, CPT-11, and bleomycin.


“Analysis of ascorbic acid-FeII -mediated linoleic acid peroxidation products by GC/MS: Development of a biochemistry lab experiment”
*Devin C. Hale, Undergraduate; Dr. Michael Nichols, Chemistry

Currently, there are few undergraduate biochemical experiments addressing the important issue of lipid peroxidation. Lipid peroxidation occurs through a reaction of a lipid with reactive oxygen species such as the hydroxyl radical, which can be formed by a reaction of FeII-ions with hydrogen peroxide. When linoleic acid, an essential ω-6 fatty acid, is treated with ascorbic acid, FeII-ions and hydrogen peroxide, several bifunctional electrophiles can be formed as products. These include 2,4-decadienal, 4-hydroxy-2(E)-nonenal (HNE), and 4-oxo-2(E)-nonenal (ONE). The concentrations of these oxidation products can be determined using GC/MS-CI. In this presentation we will demonstrate that GC/MS-CI is a viable method for determining the extent of oxidative damage of lipids in the biochemical lab. This method can then be used to study the effects of antioxidants such as α-tocopheryl acetate (vitamin E acetate) and BHT on the peroxidation reaction of linoleic acid.

“Automate Code Using Java Annotations, Java Expression Language, and Aspect-Oriented Programming”
*Lester Eliazo, Undergraduate; Advisor: Dr. Linda Seiter, Mathematics & Computer Science

Programming has improved significantly since its inception, yet writing code today still involves plenty of copying and pasting. Since identifiable patterns exist in many situations, why not automate it? Recent developments have introduced Java annotations, Java Expression Language, and aspect-oriented programming. Together, they can interact to relieve the programmer from the burden of writing repetitive code. The result is improved productivity and ease in maintenance, as concerns are separated and changes lie in just a few key locations. Research was funded by the John Huntington Foundation for Education and the George W. Codrington Charitable Foundation.

“A Literature Review of Academic and Non-Academic Variables Affecting Student Retention”
*Elaine F. Hocevar and *Dr. Ernest M. DeZolt, College of Arts & Sciences

A literature review of the variables affecting student retention in higher education suggests that the following categories of variables impact student likelihood of degree completion: student integration programs, student service interventions, and non-academic factors. Because the 4-year graduation rate is 67 percent and the 6-year graduate rate is approximately 80 percent at private institutions, it is clear that students are taking longer to complete their college degrees. Based on the literature on student retention, findings related to institutional selectivity indicate the highest rate of degree completion. Since most colleges and universities have less than ideal selectivity rates, programs focusing on student integration and student service delivery are essential to student retention and higher rates of degree completion.

“Maladaptive Eating Attitudes and Behaviors among Pre-Surgical Bariatric Patients”
*Ashley E. Russo, Undergraduate; Heather Henrickson, PhD, The Cleveland Clinic

Funded by the Huntington-Codrington Fellowship, this study evaluates pre-surgical bariatric patients’ thoughts, attitudes, and behaviors. Specifically, the variables of body checking and eating expectancies are isolated. Research suggests that women seeking bariatric surgery display fewer body checking behaviors as their body mass index (BMI) increases. Research also implies that eating expectancies are related to patients’ eating behaviors and patterns. The present study aims to evaluate the relationship between body checking, eating expectancies, BMI, and binge eating severity in a group of sixteen pre-surgical bariatric patients. No significant relationships were found between body checking, BMI, and binge eating severity or between BMI and eating expectancies. A significant positive correlation was found between eating expectancies and binge eating severity. Furthermore, body checking and eating expectancies were positively correlated. A significant research contribution could be made by further tracking body checking and eating expectancies in relation to bariatric patients’ clinical outcomes.

“Preparations of PCP and NCN 19F Reporter Pincer Complexes. Green Enough?”
Man Lung (Desmond) Kwan(1), *Paul M. Schroder(1), Katherine L. Conry(1), Bradley M. Williams(1), Norris W. Hoffman(2), Rachel Traylor(2), Benjamin Wicker(2), Alan G. Marshall(3) and Gregory A. Khitrov(3)
(1) John Carroll University, University Heights, OH, (2) University of South Alabama, Mobile, AL, (3) Ion Cyclotron Resonance Program, Tallahassee, FL

Pincer complexes have been utilized in various types of catalytic reactions. Relatively little attention has been given to the coordination chemistry of Pd(II) pincer complexes of form κ3-P,C,P-2-ZPR2-6-Z’PR2-phenyl-Pd-X and κ3-P,C,P-2,6-ZPR2-phenyl-Pd-L+ systems for the central-phenyl-to-P linkers Z=O or N(H). Here we report such research on the synthesis, NMR spectroscopy, and ligand-substitution reactions of the following systems: (i) κ3-P,C,P-4-E-2,6-(OPR2)2C6H2-Pd (E=F, H; R=Ph, Pri), (ii) κ3-P,C,P-2,6-(N(H)PPri2)2C6H3-Pd, (iii) κ3-P,C,P-2-OPPri2-6-N(H)PPri2-C6H3-Pd, and (iv) κ3-N,C,N-4-E-2,6-(CH2LN)2C6H2-Pd (LN = N-pyrazolyl, N-3,5-dimethylpyrazolyl, N-triazolyl). During the preparations of these two types of complexes, we strive to examine and employ greener processes based on several green chemistry principles (atom economy, minimize waste generation, etc.). These neutral and unipositive species have been characterized by 1H, 31P{1H}, 19F, and 13C{1H} NMR spectroscopy. In addition, 1H, 31P, and 19F NMR spectroscopy has been used to determine the equilibrium values of the ligand-substitution reactions.


“Experimental Design of an Undergraduate Laboratory Assay of the Shelf-Life of Beer”
*Nathan A. Moss, Undergraduate; Dr. Catherine Miller, Chemistry

The well known “cardboard” off-flavor of beer when it has been left out of the refrigerator for some time is attributed to the products of free radical oxidation (FROx). At cool temperatures the FROx process is slower than that at higher temperatures. Industrial production and distribution of beer does not allow continual control over storage environments, but industry has methods of measuring the oxidative stability of beer to find an optimal shelf life for consumer satisfaction. Electron Paramagnetic Resonance (EPR) provides a useful technique to measure the degree of resistance in beer to FROx. Once the natural antioxidants in beer are consumed, during a time period known as “Lagtime,” the beer becomes “skunked.” “Lagtime” is directly related to shelf life. We will design a spin trapping method to measure this “Lagtime” and introduce the background, physical methods and EPR techniques used in this experiment to the undergraduate laboratory curriculum.

“Rerum Novarum & The Socialist Movement: Different Factions, Same Goals.”
Robert Mitton III, Undergraduate; Dr. David Robson, History

In the late 19th century, in Europe, the full effects of the Industrial Revolution were beginning to manifest, many of which negatively impacted mainstream European culture: widespread poverty, city slums, pollution, etc. To try to alleviate the problems, many institutions tried to develop ways to change and improve the systems. Two such factions, the Catholic Church and the Socialist political movement, produced many documents suggesting solutions to the problems. The Catholic Church’s opinion on the problems of the Industrial Revolution, and how to correct them, was drafted into the quintessential Catholic social doctrine, Rerum Novarum. Rerum Novarum, when compared to and contrasted with socialist documents at the time, suggest surprising similarities between the two factions, in goal, and even in method.

“Thermodynamic Characterization of E. coli Manganese Superoxide Dismutase
binding to single- and double-stranded polynucleic acids”
*Lana Bengez, *Iteen Cheng, and Angela C. Smolik, Undergraduates; Dr. David P. Mascotti, Chemistry

Bacterial manganese superoxide dismutase (MnSOD) has been shown to localize to the chromosomal portion of the cell and impart protection from ionizing radiation to DNA. The binding affinity of bacterial MnSOD to non-sequence specific double stranded oligomeric DNA has been quantitated previously by nitrocellulose filter binding and gel shift assays. We have examined the equilibrium binding of E. coli MnSOD containing tryptophan to poly(U), poly(A), poly(C), poly(dU) and double-stranded (ds) DNA. Equilibrium association constants, Kobs, measured by monitoring tryptophan fluorescence quenching, were examined as functions of monovalent salt (MX) concentration and type, as well as temperature, from which ΔG°obs and Δ H°obs were determined. The polynucleotides bind to MnSOD in the following affinity hierarchy, poly(dU)>poly(U)>dsDNA>poly(A)>poly(C). For each polynucleotide, Kobs decreases with increasing [K+]. For all polynucleotides, the values of ΔH°obs are independent of [K+]; therefore, the salt concentration dependence of ΔG°obs is due to primarily entropic origins.

*James Naeger, *Liz Martelli, Undergraduates; Dr. James Lissemore, Biology

Echinococcosis, also known as hydatid disease or cystic echinococcosis is caused by the larvae of parasitic cestodes (tapeworms) of the genus Echinococcosis granulosus, E. multilocularis, E. oligarthrus, and E. vogeli. The most common species that cause disease in humans are E. granulosus and E. multilocularis. Hydatid cysts are usually found in the liver and can be frequent in the brain and lungs. Parasites of the genus Echinococcosis occur worldwide, most frequently in rural areas where dogs ingest the organs of infected animals. Sheep, goat, and pig herding are occupations at higher risk of coming into contact with the eggs of the parasite. Prevalence in definitive hosts is closely linked to incidence rate in humans and other intermediate hosts. Proper hygiene is paramount, especially in small children, to prevent oral-fecal transmission of the parasite. Diagnosis and treatment can often be prohibitively expensive; being infected has socioeconomic consequences as well.

“Dialectical Behavior Therapy: The relationship between DBT skill use, affect regulation, and acting out behavior”
*Marisa R. Benich, Undergraduate; Dr. Denise D. Ben-Porath, Psychology

Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) is a therapy approach that has been used with multi-diagnosed, difficult-to-treat populations. DBT assumes that acting out behaviors are maladaptive attempts to regulate negative affect. Therefore, DBT training teaches clients more skillful ways to regulate affect. The current study plans to examine sixty men and women enrolled in a DBT intensive outpatient program at Akron General Hospital. Clients completed the Beck Depression Inventory-2, Negative Mood Regulation Scale, and the Symptom Checklist-90-R at the beginning and end of treatment. Preliminary data collected supports DBT as an effective therapy approach with regard to mood regulation. Data are additionally discussed in the context of the weekly data collected from DBT diary cards on acting out behaviors and the frequency and type of DBT skill use.


“Toxic Mechanism of Arsenic Compounds in HEK 293 Cells: Effect of Oxidants”
*Jamie Rhodes, Undergraduate; Dr. Yuh-Cherng Chai, Chemistry

Oxidant stress is the state of chemical imbalance between the generation of reactive oxygen species (ROS) and the ability to detoxify reactive intermediates. Excess ROS can damage DNA, protein and other cellular components, leading to cellular death. In this project, HEK 293 cells (human embryonic kidney cells) were treated with different concentrations of two different arsenic compounds. It is important to understand the mechanism of arsenic compounds in order to evaluate the toxic and therapeutic effects of its use. Various methods were used to investigate protein thiol modification, glutathione metabolism, and cell toxicity. From these data, it was determined that with arsenic treatment alone, extensive protein thiol modification occurred at eight-hours post-treatment, with approximately 50% of free thiols being modified. Glutathione was also significantly (50-75%) decreased. However, arsenic toxicity (80%) did not occur until twenty-four hours post-treatment. Funded by the Huntington-Codrington Foundation.

“The Recruitment of Bone Marrow Derived Cells by Platelets during Angiogenesis”
*Jessica Serbin, Undergraduate; Dr. Maria Madajka, Molecular Cardiology, Cleveland Clinic Lerner Research Institute

Angiogenesis, the formation of new blood vessels, occurs in ischemic tissue conditions where the blood and oxygen supply has been partially or completely blocked. Under such conditions, platelets often release pro-angiogenic factors. Our hypothesis asserted that platelets stimulate the growth of blood vessels through the recruitment of bone marrow cells into the neovasculature. To test this, a hind limb ischemia model was utilized in mice along with a platelet depletion antibody or platelet injections. The wild type mice used had been lethally irradiated, then given bone marrow from mice containing Green Fluorescent Protein (GFP). A Laser Doppler Imager was used to monitor the limb blood flow and the process of angiogenesis was confirmed through immunostaining. Analysis of immunostained muscle sections showed that GFP bone marrow derived cells were incorporated in the proximity of the new blood vessels. Mice given platelet injections had significantly more GFP cells when compared with the platelet depletion group, confirming our hypothesis.

“Measuring Reflectivity with a Ring-Down Cavity”
*Ian Steward, Undergraduate; Dr. Susan Lehman, Physics, College of Wooster

We used a ring-down cavity to measure the reflectivity of an AlAs/GaAs distributed Bragg reflector (DBR). Measuring reflectivity with a ring-down cavity employs a simple theoretical procedure with a high precision optical cavity. We used a 980 nm diode laser beam in our ring-down cavity to measure the characteristic decay time of our ring-down signal. We used the measured decay time to find the reflectivity of our super-mirror both from the front of the cavity and from the back to assure that our system was working. We measured the reflectivity of the super-mirror to be 0.9994 compared to the manufacturer’s 0.9998 value. Once the setup was working we installed the DBR B660 and used the front detector to find its reflectivity to be 0.9975+/-0.0002 at 980 nm.

“Ron Paul and the Internet Revolution”
*Steve Wessel, Undergraduate; Dr. Larry Schwab, Political Science

Representative Ron Paul, an obscure seventy-two-year old obstetrician and Republican Representative from Texas’ fourteenth Congressional District will not win the presidency. But his campaign’s innovative uses of the Internet will shape the future of political campaigning. My poster examines how Representative Ron Paul’s campaign and supporters have built on the past success of Howard Dean and others’ creative uses of the internet, and expanded the world of online campaigning. It will examine their tactics – from the first in-video-game rally to using Catholic rights advocate/terrorist Guy Fawkes Day to raise the most money ever raised in a twenty-four hour period – their numbers, and their successes and failures. Most importantly, it will examine what his campaign means for the future of political campaigns. It will look at how a no-name Representative from Texas helped spawn a movement that took the political establishment by storm.

“The Evolution of Scholarly Communication: Transforming the Exchange of Information”
*Ruth R. Connell, Grasselli Library; Catherine T. Anson, Sponsored Research

The exchange of ideas among scholars and others is very important to society. In recent years several factors are transforming this exchange. The rise in serials costs at a rate much higher than the inflation rate has resulted in fewer titles being available in libraries. New developments in the digital rights and copyright arenas are threatening the “Fair use” exemptions of the 1972 copyright law. Several important initiatives are gaining ground in an effort to keep information as free and accessible as possible. These include open access journals (many peer-reviewed), institutional repositories of faculty and student work, and disciplinary repositories. In addition, authors are encouraged to retain at least part, if not complete, copyright to their works, rather than signing them over to publishers. This whole process, now known as scholarly communication, has emerged as a powerful change agent in universities. This poster will highlight some of the issues of scholarly communication.


“Educational Attainment and Median Income of African Americans and White Americans: 1950 – 2000”
*Kathleen Keating, Undergraduate; Dr. Sheri Young, Psychology

In the present study we examined the increase of median income of African American families compared to that of White American families between the years 1950-2000. Further, we looked at the secondary and post-secondary educational attainment of African Americans and White Americans between these years. We also studied the effect of educational attainment on the median income of both populations. This research was funded by the Huntington-Codrington Foundations, Summer 2007.

“The Formation of Octacosanoic Acid Monolayers on Stainless Steel”
*Amy Betschart, Undergraduate; Kelly Papariella, Graduate Student; Dr. Ellen S. Gawalt, Chemistry and Biochemistry, Duquesne University

Modification of the surface of stainless steel by forming self assembled monolayers may make biomaterials more biocompatible by preventing the adhesion of cells to these biomaterials. Carboxylic and phosphonic acid monolayers were formed on the surface of stainless steel through a solution deposition technique, and the presence of these monolayers was confirmed using diffuse reflectance infrared fourier transform spectroscopy (DRIFT). The surface was further analyzed using a VCA Optima Goniometer. Successfully modified substrates were then exposed to 3T3 fibroblast cells and analyzed using fluorescent microscopy. It was found that octacosanoic acid easily formed an ordered monolayer that proved an effective inhibitor of cell adhesion to the surface of stainless steel. The role of octacosanoic acid as an inhibitor of cell adhesion will increase its application to stainless steel and other metals in the manufacture of future biomaterials.

“Comparison of Authentic Designer and Designer Imposter Scents by Gas Chromatography Mass Spectrometry and Principle Component Analysis”
*Amy Betschart, Undergraduate; Dr. Michael Nichols, Chemistry

The molecular components of authentic designer and designer imposter scents were first separated and then identified using gas chromatography and mass spectrometry (GC-MS) respectively. Chromatograms were obtained using both electron impact and chemical ionizations. They were then qualitatively and quantitatively compared to determine whether the components of the authentic designer scents were chemically similar to or different from the components of the designer imposter scents. We are attempting to use principal component analysis (PCA) to both classify the chemically similar scents as well as compare the authentic designer scents to the designer imposter scents.

“RKKY interaction in Antimony Chromium Telluride”
*Sylvia C. Aybar, Undergraduate; Dr Graciela Lacueva, Physics

Diluted magnetic semiconductors (DMS) are special materials that conduct electricity and also exhibit significant magnetic behavior. Understanding the properties of these materials would make it possible to use them in electronics. It is advantageous to use DMS because the current flow as well as the magnetization can be easily controlled. In this work we are studying the DMS Antimony Chromium Telluride. We develop a theoretical model to explain the magnetic properties of this material by using the well know RKKY interaction. Funded by JCU-Huntington/Codrington Foundation.

“A Web-Based Application for Translating and Extracting the Optimal Gene in a DNA Strand”
*Katherine D’Amico, Undergraduate; Dr. David Mascotti, Chemistry; Dr. Linda Seiter, Mathematics and Computer Science

Bioinformatics is a field that utilizes knowledge of both biology and computer science in order to further understanding. This strategy has become increasingly prevalent in genetics, where computer applications are designed to perform tasks such as locating genes within DNA. Due to the complexity of those applications, it is often difficult to incorporate bioinformatics into undergraduate curriculum. This project creates a web-based application that extracts an optimal gene from a DNA strand. This program is more “user-friendly” than existing programs because the genes are clearly highlighted and easy to locate in the output. This project is interdisciplinary in nature because it combines both genetics and computer science, and the result is a program that can be implemented in undergraduate courses as a means to introduce bioinformatics.


“Regulation of Histone H3 Acetylation in VEGF and Thrombin-Induced
Endothelial Cells”
*Lana Pollock, Undergraduate; Corttrell M. Kinney, Graduate Student, Physiology and Biophysics, Case Western Reserve University; Dr. Paul E. DiCorleto, Institute Chairman, Cell Biology, Lerner Research Institute, Cleveland Clinic

Mitogen-activated protein kinase phosphatase-1 (MKP-1) is a dual specificity phosphatase that dephosphorylates MAP kinase. MAP kinase phosphorylates downstream-targeted transcription factors important in many cellular functions including gene expression, division, and survival. Reports by the DiCorleto lab indicate that thrombin and vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) activate MKP-1 expression in endothelial cells. Additionally, recent unpublished data from our lab showed that MKP-1 dephosphorylates histone H3 in VEGF and thrombin-stimulated endothelial cells. Our goal was to determine the effects of VEGF and thrombin-induction in endothelial cells on the acetylation of histone H3, and to determine the role of MKP-1 in this pathway. Human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVECs) were treated with thrombin and VEGF following a time course, and levels of histone H3 acetylation were measured by immuno-blot analysis. MKP-1 was found to decrease acetylated histone H3 in both VEGF and thrombin-stimulated endothelial cells. Funded by the NIH and the Cleveland Clinic Foundation.

“Imatinib Attenuated Skeletal Muscle Dystrophy in Mdx Mice”
Ping Huang, Xinyu S. Zhao, *Matthew Fields, Richard M. Ransohoff, Lan Zhou
Department of Neurology, The Neuroinflammation Research Center, Lerner Research Institute, Cleveland Clinic
Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is the most common, lethal, and untreatable genetic muscle disease, affecting 1 in 3,500 live male births. It is caused by a defective dystrophin gene on the X chromosome. The disease is characterized by progressive skeletal and cardiac muscle weakness with premature death. Muscle necrosis, inflammation, and fibrosis are prominent pathological features, and pharmacotherapy to ameliorate these pathological changes represents an important therapeutic approach for DMD. Imatinib (Gleevec) is an FDA-approved drug for treating chronic myelogenous leukemia and several other malignancies. It is a tyrosine kinase inhibitor that selectively inhibits the tyrosine kinase activity of c-abl, c-kit, and PDGF receptors. It is not only a revolutionary targeted anti-neoplastic therapy, but also a promising anti-inflammatory and anti-fibrotic therapy as demonstrated by its substantial inhibition of inflammation and fibrosis of liver, kidney, lung, and skin in the disease animal models.

“Improving the Efficiency of Power System Modeling”
*Benedict S. Curatolo, Undergraduate; Anthony Jannette, Aerospace Engineer, NASA Glenn Research Center

In the 1980s, a modeling program known as SPACE (Systems Performance Analysis for Capability Evaluation) was developed to predict the performance of the International Space Station (ISS) power systems. The SPACE tool uses a different coordinate system to describe solar array angles than is used by the ISS operators. Modifications to the SPACE code were made in an effort to reduce the possibility of user error and the time to setup and perform a solar array short circuit current analysis. The usability of the program was enhanced by reducing the amount of input and output data processing performed manually. A subroutine was developed that enables the SPACE code to translate any predefined coordinate system into a SPACE compatible format. Also, a script was developed that made it possible to run SPACE thousands of times simply and quickly. These improvements reduced the labor requirements for large scale analyses by 90%.

“Effect of Self-Verification and Ease of Retrieval on Commitment in Relationships”
*Amanda Pizzi, Undergraduate; Faculty Sponsor: Dr. John Yost, Psychology

Self-Verification Theory states that individuals seek to verify their self-concepts, even if negative. This also occurs in relationships, explaining why some remain committed to partners who may view them negatively. As part of a 2 (Self-Esteem: low vs. high) X 2(Compliments: two vs. six) between subjects design, 72 participants (24 men, 48 women) in steady dating relationships, were asked how committed they were to their relationship after completing a self-esteem scale and an ease of retrieval manipulation where they listed either two or six compliments their partner gave them over the last week. Interestingly, while participants with HSE overall were more committed, LSE participants were less committed in the Six-Compliments condition than in the Two-Compliments condition. These findings suggest that either individuals in dating relationships prefer self-enhancement to self-verification, or that LSE people become defensive rather than committed when they feel their partner’s view of them is negative.

“Fair Trade: Bringing the Movement to Campus One Cup at a Time”
*Natalie Terry and *Scott Zimmerman, Undergraduates; Christopher Kerr, Campus Ministry

After completing a year as Campus Ministry’s Fair Trade Interns, we would like to present how the Fair Trade Movement has affected the John Carroll Community and the world. Fair Trade for consumers is an alternate way to shop. For producers, farmers, and factory workers it means receiving a living wage, ensuring safe working conditions, community development, and environmental sustainability. Fair Trade is a way to make systemic change to a trade system that is in need of great reform.Fair Trade challenges consumers to think about the people behind the product. The movement has brought great change for John Carroll, change within our food service, bookstore, athletic department, and more importantly change within our lives. As the Fair Trade Movement grows, so must we, and it is our calling to discern about our goals for the Fair Trade Movement on campus in the years to come.


“Pathophysiology of Bladder Remodeling after Sling Procedure”
*Christina Martin, Undergraduate; Dr. Firouz Daneshgari and Dr. Nazli Shivazi, Biomedical Engineering, Lerner Research Institute, Cleveland Clinic

In the US, Stress Urinary Incontinence (SUI) is most successfully treated by the sling procedure. However, the sling is also accompanied by the most complications. Our objective was to determine the sling-induced, pathophysiological changes in bladder muscle, nerve and connective tissues. We used immunohistochemistry, Western Blot and ELISA methods to study the bladders of female rats which had undergone pudendal nerve transection (PNT), to simulate SUI, vaginal distention (VD), PNT/Sling, PNT/VD and no treatment (Control). Most groups produced COX-2 enzyme and Nerve Growth Factor (NGF), but the PNT/Sling group exhibited the strongest signal. No significant difference in levels of MMPs or TIMP-1 were noticed between the groups. The expression of COX-2 and NGF suggests inflammation and ongoing remodeling in the bladder tissue in response to a mechanical stimulus. Further research must be conducted to confirm these results and whether the response is due to the sling or another mechanical stimulus.

“Regulation of Amyloid Precursor Protein (APP) in Zebrafish”
*John Sullivan, Undergraduate; Sanjay Pimplikar, Neurosciences, Cleveland Clinic; and Joshi Powrima, Post-Doctoral at Cleveland Clinic

Amyloid precursor protein (APP), a neuronally enriched membrane protein, is intimately associated with Alzheimer’s disease, although its ultimate function remains unknown. The purpose of this research was to develop a model zebrafish system that can be utilized to understand the function of APP during embryonic development. The first component of this research established an optimized protocol for studying APP in zebrafish using protein analysis via Western blotting. Then, a native baseline level of APP in wild-type zebrafish was established over an embryological time course. Finally, morpholinos were microinjected into developing zebrafish embryos to “knockdown” the expression of APPa and APPb. The results showed that APPb morpholino completely repressed the expression of APPb for up to 72 hours. Depletion of the APPb protein resulted in abnormal development of the zebrafish embryo including smaller head, curved tail, slowed cell movement, and misshapen somite boundaries. These changes indicated a role for APP in regulating the convergent-extension cell movements during embryogenesis.

“Sustainability Policies of City Governments: A Measure of Policy and Demographic Variability across Cities”
*Sarah Stroney, Undergraduate; Dr. Elizabeth Stiles, Political Science
In the attempt to improve the sustainability of our world, many reports and policies, including the foundational Brundtland Commission of 1987, discuss the importance of cities in achieving global sustainability objectives. Many city governments responded with the implementation of local sustainability policies. Because the idea of “sustainable cities” is relatively new, research has been limited and has mostly focused on theory and single case studies of various cities, with copious studies on San Francisco and Portland, Oregon. This research adds more quantitative analysis on the subject by measuring variation in sustainability policies by multiple city governments across a range of policies. The results attempt to shed light on the variation among sustainability policies and the cities that have chosen whether or not to implement them.

“Using geometric morphometrics to determine cranial shape differences within a polymorphic species”
*Chad Lucas, Undergraduate; Dr. Carl Anthony, Biology; Cari-Ann M. Hickerson, PhD candidate, Biological, Geological and Environmental Science, Cleveland State University

The red-backed salamander, Plethodon cinereus, is a small terrestrial, woodland salamander commonly found throughout eastern North America. Red-backed salamanders are polymorphic for color pattern and recent evidence suggests that the striped and unstriped color morphs have become ecologically differentiated with respect to diet and activity pattern. We were interested in using geometric morphometrics, a statistical tool that compares shape features between populations, to examine the potential phenotypic differences in head shape of sympatric color morphs. During our study, digital images were taken from the lateral side of 611 striped and 253 unstriped specimens at the Cleveland Museum of Natural History over the summer of 2007. Previous studies have documented changes in head morphology resulting from dietary changes in salamanders. We predict that differences in head shape between the two color morphs will correlate with observed differences in diet. Funding was provided by the Huntington and Codrington Foundations.

“Effects of Timing of Orthopaedic Surgery in Multiply-injured Patients”
*Gregory Lausé, Undergraduate; Nichole Schafer MS, Beth Ann Cureton BS, John H. Wilber MD, Heather A. Vallier MD, MetroHealth Medical Center

Early stabilization of fractures of the femur, pelvis, spine and acetabulum reduces some complication rates. However, in patients with multiple systemic trauma the optimal timing and type of treatment for skeletal injury may be affected by severe injury to the head, chest, or abdomen. These relationships are poorly understood. The purpose of this study is to optimize the treatment of severely injured patients with a combination of systemic injury and unstable fractures of the pelvis, acetabulum, spine, and/or femur. A retrospective review was performed. Physiological and laboratory parameters were assessed. Complications were recorded. Goals were to define which injury types warrant surgical delay, and to determine what time interval for fracture fixation promotes optimal patient outcome. The data analyzed at this time includes: Patient demographics, mechanism of injury, fracture type, and associated injuries to the abdomen, head, or chest and complications during their hospital course. Funded by MetroHealth Hospital.


“Quantitative analysis and application of EMG recordings from the pudendal nerve and external urethral sphincter (EUS)”
*Jonathan Glaab, Undergraduate; Brad Gill, Medical Student; Margot Damaser, Levi Salcedo, H.H. Jaing, Biomedical Engineering, Lerner Research Institute, The Cleveland Clinic, Cleveland, Ohio; Dr. Mike Martin, Biology

Electromyography (EMG) is useful for determining the activity of a nerve or muscle. However, quantification of EMG recordings is relatively new, especially internal needle EMG on small structures such as the external urethral sphincter (EUS). Previously, EUS EMG has usually been presented qualitatively. Quantification allows for statistical data analysis methods and therefore stronger determination of results. The goal was to develop a method of EUS EMG quantification for a study examining the effects of simulated childbirth injuries on urethral function. Thirty-two female virgin Sprague-Dawley rats were randomly separated into 4 groups: vaginal distension (VD), pudendal nerve crush (PNC), both PNC and VD (PNC+VD), and controls. EUS EMG recordings were recorded four days, three weeks, or six weeks after simulated childbirth injury for qualitative and quantitative analysis. The quantification method matched qualitative data and clearly demonstrated that a dual injury group (PNC+VD) takes significantly longer to recover than a single injury.

“Background Failures of British Appeasement Policy in the Munich Agreement Prior to WWII: How & Why the Policy was Chosen and WWII Was Not Avoided”
*Michael A. George, Undergraduate; Faculty Sponsor: Dr. Anne Kugler, History

Historians generally consider Neville Chamberlain’s policy of appeasement in the Munich Agreement to have been a catastrophic blunder—one that ultimately failed to stop Hitler’s aggression and thus contributed to the outbreak of WWII. This project explains the circumstances behind his decision to view appeasement as a possible strategy to preserve peace in Europe and their consequences. Chamberlain thought it would bring peace to Britain, and therefore Europe making a disastrous miscalculation as the Munich Agreement had very different consequences. The Munich Agreement, therefore, not only was one of the causes of WWII, but it also gave Germany certain military advantages that were previously enjoyed by British forces prior to its signing.

“Microdistribution of two species of plethodontid salamanders (Plethodon cinereus and Eurycea bislineata) within a stream-forest ecotone: Evidence of interspecific competition”
*Kimberly Thompson, Roberta Muehlheim, Katie Hennessey, and Marty Calabrese, Graduate Students; Faculty Advisor: Dr. Carl Anthony, Biology
Competition is known to be an important factor in the structuring of plethodontid salamander communities. Two species of salamander (Plethodon cinereus and Eurycea bislineata) were studied to determine whether competition may influence the microdistribution of individual salamanders along the stream to forest ecotone. We looked under 1,200 cover objects within 15 meters of the streams edge at 3 different sites to document small scale species distributions. Interspecific pairs of salamanders occurred less frequently than expected by chance. This result supports our hypothesis that competitive exclusion is occurring for refuges (i.e., cover objects). We found no significant positive relationship between salamander size and cover object size, nor any difference in cover object size used between species. Our study is one of the few addressing competition among salamander species exhibiting different life history traits along an aquatic-terrestrial gradient. These results will supplement ongoing behavioral experiments in our lab.

“Effect of Predator Removal on the Abundance of Mites & Springtails”
*Kimberly Thompson, Graduate Student; Cari Hickerson, PhD candidate, Biological, Geological and Environmental Science, Cleveland State University; Faculty Advisor: Dr. Carl Anthony, Biology

Investigating trophic cascades within food webs can be important for providing a more detailed understanding of predator-prey interactions and their ecological implications on community structure. We studied the forest floor food web to determine if top down trophic cascades occur with the removal of top predators. Specifically we looked at the effects of salamander and predatory invertebrate removal on the abundance of springtails (Collembola) and mites (Acari). Sticky traps were placed in control and predator removal plots in the spring, summer, and fall of 2006. Invertebrates were enumerated in the lab, and mites and springtails were identified to the lowest possible taxonomic grouping. We detected no statistically significant effects among treatments for either mites or springtails. The lack of statistical significance in our results may be due to the complexity of food webs, the limited amount of sampling, and/or the sampling method. Implications of our results will be discussed further.

“Giftedness in African-American children: Factors and circumstances leading to low representation among gifted youth”
*Alison Cyperski, Undergraduate; Dr, Sheri Young, Psychology

A review of the IQ and Achievement literature for children who are part of underrepresented populations shows that there is a significant focus on children who are underperforming and considered ‘at risk’/ ‘at promise.’ For children who both a part of underrepresented populations, and gifted, there is far less focus on their intellectual development and academic achievement. The present literature review examined the under-representation of minority children, specifically African-American youth, in gifted education programs. According to the research, level of socioeconomic status, teacher nomination for testing, and lower rates of parent nomination are all factors contributing to the lower levels of identification of gifted African American children. These factors, and issues of alternative testing for giftedness, will be discussed as methods of increasing identification.


“Development of Human Swarm Computer Interface for the Four Color Graphing Problem and Sudoku”
*Andrew Gibel, Undergraduate; Faculty Sponsors: Drs. Dan Palmer and Marc Kirschenbaum, Mathematics & Computer Science

Swarms of agents interacting in a simple manner are of interest because of the decentralized way in which they solve problems. If one can extract algorithms from these swarms, which are performing a group task without any individual being explicitly aware of anything more than its own simple job, it can be applied to many interesting problems. Utilizing “swarms” of humans is experimentally interesting because researchers have a greater ability to interact with and direct human subjects, yet still retain true simultaneous and unpredictable behavior difficult to reproduce in simulations. Using a server/client network model, a human interface sudoku tool was designed to demonstrate emergence in a controlled experiment (finding a solution to a sudoku puzzle) and to use in experiments that attempt to capture and facilitate reverse engineering of agent behavior to extract useful algorithms. The program was developed with portability in mind and it runs on multiple platforms including Microsoft Windows, Mac OSX, and Ubuntu Linux.

“Improving Swarm Solutions to Constrained Resource Problems Using Global Happiness”
*Anthony Lanese, Undergraduate; Faculty Sponsors: Drs. Dan Palmer and Marc Kirschenbaum, Mathematics & Computer Science

Using swarms allows solutions to large problems to be specified as simple instructions carried out by many hundreds of interacting agents, allowing the swarm as a whole to solve complicated problems without explicit instructions. We investigated whether the behavior of a swarm changes when each agent has some knowledge of the overall state of the system. The problems used were groups of equations with limited resources and cross-number puzzles, with and without limited resources. Programs for each problem were run multiple times, with varying weights on “global happiness” – the current state of the problem relative to a solved state. With global happiness, each agent in the swarm is aware of the entire swarm’s general state and goals, as well as its own. The results showed that, when resources were limited, incorporating some global happiness could improve the performance of the swarm. In the case of the cross-number puzzles, a 12% weight on global happiness increased the solution rate from 12% to 100%.

“Simulating Social Networks with Virtual Swarm Programs”
*Joshua Ewing, Undergraduate; Faculty Sponsors: Drs. Dan Palmer and Marc Kirschenbaum, Mathematics & Computer Science

Online social networking programs like Facebook and Myspace allow for information to proliferate throughout a population quickly. Influencing the flow or spread of information and beliefs is thus a more powerful tool than ever before and new techniques must be designed to achieve this end. The unpredictable and complex nature of social networks lends the problem to investigation using virtual swarm simulations, where complex interactions can be studied in real time. Additional benefits of using virtual swarms to model social networks include the ability for a virtual swarm simulation to handle massive amounts of agents and the ability of the simulation to display emergent behavior. In this paper, the Repast simulation took kit was employed to create a model for social network simulation with multiple experimental uses. A mock election simulation is possible where two opposed beliefs within a population are modeled with fuzzy logic and agents exchange belief values at each interaction. Additionally, the model can measure the rate of information spread within a population and experiments can be performed by modifying different simulation parameters.

“Thermoelectric Properties of Nanostructured PbTe”
*Diego Hernandez, Undergraduate; Dr. Jeffrey Dyck, Physics; Xiaofeng Qiu, Graduate Student; Dr. Clemens Burda, Case Western Reserve University

Thermoelectric materials are able to convert heat energy into electrical energy and vise versa. The thermoelectric material lead telluride was embedded with lead selenide nanoparticles and then tested against ordinary lead telluride for improved thermoelectric properties. Theorists predict that such nanostructuring may improve thermoelectric properties by scattering acoustic phonons, which transmit thermal energy, while allowing free passage of charge carriers. We compared lead telluride with two concentrations of nanoparticles to the standard lead telluride. Measurements of resistivity, thermal conductivity, Seebeck coefficient, and Hall mobility were made from 10 K to 300 K. We found thermoelectric properties were not enhanced in our range of measurements, but further tests may show the true potential of nanostructuring. Funding by John Carroll University and the Huntington and Codrington Foundations are gratefully acknowledged.

“A Hybrid Computational Model of Neural Pruning as a Cause of Schizophrenia”
*Jason Shifflet, Undergraduate; Faculty Sponsors: Drs. Dan Palmer and Marc Kirschenbaum

With the rise of cognitive psychology, the idea of abstracting the brain/mind as a computational entity has become increasingly popular. Abstract computational models enable scientists to explore the impact of pathological brain development that may lead to mental illness. During adolescence, the brain reorganizes, eliminating many synaptic connections, making the brain’s information processing more efficient. Previous researchers (e.g. Feinberg) hypothesize that a cause of schizophrenia may be excessive synaptic pruning, contributing to the hallucinations and delusions. Hoffman previously has shown in computational models that delusions can be simulated by creating perturbations using neural Darwinism, which lends biological plausibility to proposed pruning algorithms and resulting network configurations. To augment Hoffman’s model in the hopes of making it more biologically sound, we developed and tested a hybrid pruning algorithm. This algorithm uses both neural Darwinism and Hopfield networks to assigned weights based on neurotrophic resource usage to model neural behavior. Based on preliminary results, our hybrid approach shows a fundamentally different network may serve as a new model to examine the development of schizophrenia.


“Responses of Song Sparrows (Melospiza melodia) in Autumn to the Song of a Conspecific from Different Geographic Regions”
*Donella S. Bolen, Graduate Assistant, Biology
; Advisors: Dr. Carl Anthony, Biology and Dr. Andy Jones, Cleveland Museum of Natural History
Song dialects are characteristics or patterns of songs that vary geographically among populations of a species. Dialect discrimination may aid in territory defense by allowing birds to gauge the threat level represented by intruders. Songs from the local dialect elicit more aggressive responses than songs from foreign dialects. Experiments using song playback, by simulating territorial intrusions, test how well birds discriminate between song dialects. Song Sparrows are territorial year-round, yet little is known of their responses to simulated intrusions during the non-breeding season. Song Sparrows were tested from fourteen local sites for their responses to five different songs from increasingly distant geographic locations. Results suggest both autumn territoriality and dialect discrimination. As the playback songs increased in geographic distance from the home territory, fewer birds responded. The aggressiveness of their responses also decreased, suggesting that the territory owners perceived the intruder as less threatening as the differences in their songs increased.

“The Threat of an English Republic from 1868-1872”
*John E. Bugner, Undergraduate; Dr. Anne Kugler, History

This project follows the small republican movement in England from its birth as a socio-economic movement in the lower class, to its eventual rise to debate in Parliament, and to its death in the wake of a life threatening illness to the Prince of Wales that returned public support to the monarchy. Faced with Queen Victoria’s self-imposed seclusion following the death of her husband and the Prince’s questionable morality in public affairs, some radical politicians decided to take advantage of the monarchy’s corruption to create support for republicanism. Unfortunately for the republicans, the Prince fell ill with typhoid in November 1871; underlying loyalty for the monarchy manifested itself in an outpouring of public support for the monarchs. Aware of the change in public opinion, Prime Minister Gladstone saw an opportunity to squash the movement and maintain support for the monarchy by successfully planning a Thanksgiving ceremony for the Prince’s recovery.

“Is the Binding of Biotin to Streptavidin Cooperative?”
*Charles Ponyik, Undergraduate; Drs. Mark J. Waner and David P. Mascotti, Chemistry

The binding of biotin to tetrameric streptavidin is a commonly exploited tool for
biotechnology, yet some fundamental questions about the nature of the binding remain. After some initial disagreement in the literature, the latest studies suggest that the binding is not allosteric in the traditional sense, but that the binding may be cooperative in a structural sense. This project examines changes in the intrinsic fluorescence of streptavidin in response to biotin binding. This intrinsic fluorescence from tryptophan residues can be related directly to structural changes occurring in the protein. The data collected are consistent with variation in the protein structure depending on the saturation of the four binding sites in streptavidin.

“Herpes Simplex Virus Type II”
*Matt McDiarmid and *Rob Siedler, Undergraduates; Faculty Sponsor: Dr. James Lissemore, Biology

Herpes Simplex Virus Type II, commonly called Genital Herpes, is caused by viral infection. It is mainly transmitted through direct contact with infected individuals. HSV-II then penetrates the skin and enters a dormant stage after the initial primary infection. The virus can lay dormant without symptoms as it takes up residence in the dorsal root ganglion and other nerves near the genital region. The virus can periodically cause outbreaks producing mucus coated skin lesions in the genital region. Excessive stress or exposure to high levels of UV light can bring the virus out of its dormant stage. HSV-II is fairly common, infecting one in five individuals, with women being at greater risk. There currently is no cure for Herpes Simplex Virus Type II.

“Discovering Academic Advising Through the Lens of Appreciative Inquiry”
*Dr. Sophie Kus-Patena, Advising, College of Arts & Sciences
; Dr. Thomas Conklin, Management, Marketing, and Logistics
Across the country, academic institutions are faced with fiscal concerns, shrinking enrollments, new technologies, and changing student demographics. These challenges engage the academic community, including academic advising, to question and reevaluate the effectiveness of services, mission, vision, and leadership functions. Since 1970, a faculty advising model has been in place to serve undergraduates at John Carroll University. Its effectiveness too, has been questioned as the needs of students and the community continues to grow. This paper is an examination of this faculty advising model through the lens of appreciative inquiry as an organizational development intervention and social research method. The researcher will make the case for the use of appreciative inquiry to examine “best practices” that give “life and energy” to advising at John Carroll University.


“Test Order Effects in Simultaneous Protocols”
*Tim Warner, Undergraduate; *Dr. Abdulrazaq A. Imam, Psychology

Two experiments were performed to examine how simultaneous protocols typically yield poorer stimulus equivalence outcomes than other protocols used in equivalence research. The first experiment had sixteen participants who demonstrated two independent groups of three three-member equivalence classes in two conditions, in separate sessions, one using the standard simultaneous protocol and the other using a hybrid simultaneous training and simple-to-complex testing. The second experiment was similar with the exception that there were eight participants and one session. Both experiments yielded relatively similar results as participants showed better accuracy and shorter duration with the hybrid than with the standard protocol. The one exception was the percent change in accuracy. Experiment 1 showed seventy-five percent of people had a percent change of 10 or greater compared eighty percent in experiment 2. The results implicate test order effects and suggest explanations for the difficulty often encountered with the simultaneous protocol.

“Transcription Assays using Short Single, Double, and Hairpin Loop Templates”
*Tania Lahood, Undergraduate; Dr. Michael Martin, Biology; Dr. David Mascotti, Chemistry

Standard transcription assays use templates that are >100 base pairs of linear, double-stranded DNA. In this study we used novel templates that possessed a double-stranded promoter for T7 RNA polymerase recruitment, but the remainder of each DNA construct was not double stranded. A linear, completely double-stranded DNA template was compared to two templates of the same length. One template strand was self-complementary and formed a hairpin (snapback), whereas the other strand possessed no self-complementary and remained single-stranded. The single and double-stranded templates produced RNA that was similar in length, whereas the snapback template produced RNA that was shorter than expected. Current studies are ongoing to determine the strength of each template and the identity of the shorter RNA product generated from the snapback template.

“Synthesis And Purification Of A Fluorogenic Reagent Used In A Spectrofluorimetric Copper Assay”
*Kim Kern, Undergraduate; Faculty Sponsor: Dr. Catherine Miller, Chemistry

In order to determine the degree of metal exchange in copper metalloenzyme transport studies and environmental samples, sensitive, reproducible and accurate analytical methods are required. Spectrofluorimetry has the advantages of convenience and simplicity and the inherent sensitivity makes this method more useful in trace metal analysis of ions. A new copper ion (II) fluorogenic reagent, 8-[(2-pyridine)-methylideneamino] quinoline (PMAQ) was synthesized to be used in a fluorescence quenching study. Following the published procedure, a very low yield is obtained along with a fair amount of tar. Several modifications of the synthesis and recrystallization in ethanol were studied to increase the purity and yield of the PMAQ ligand. The extent and efficiency of the refluxing stage of the synthesis was monitored using H-NMR. Optimum conditions for the synthesis and purification of PMAQ will be presented.

“Heavy Metal Analysis of Chlorophyll Containing Vegetables”
*Louis Volino, Undergraduate; Dr. Michael Nichols, Chemistry; Faculty Sponsor: Dr. Catherine Miller, Chemistry

Chlorophylls are essential for conversion of solar energy into biological useful chemical energy. Our objective is to evaluate the use of copper as an additive to chlorophyll containing vegetables in order to maintain a fresh looking green color. It is well-known that copper addition to the porphyrin ring of chlorophyll can displaces the exiting magnesium at the center of the ring and replaces it with a copper ion. A porphyrin ring containing copper has more intense green color. It would be logical for vegetable companies to add copper as a food colorant. Thin Layer Chromatography was used as a preliminary means of identifying the copper/porphyrin complex. We used a combination of Inductively Coupled Plasma and Atomic Absorption spectroscopy to analyze the heavy metal concentration of copper, iron, and magnesium in several brands of canned, packaged, and frozen spinach and peas.

“TMEM30a: A Phospholipid Transport Protein”
*Leah Wydro, Undergraduate; Faculty Sponsor: Dr. Tom McIntyre, Cell Biology, The Cleveland Clinic

Previous studies have shown that phospholipids are actively transported into the cell by a transmembrane protein. In yeasts, these proteins are referred to as Lem3p and CD36. The mammalian homologs to these proteins have unknown functions. The focus of this project was to determine if mammalian TMEM30 proteins are orthologs of S. cerevisiae Lem3 or CD50 proteins and if they will functionally complement transport defects. In order to test for TMEM30’s function, the gene encoding TMEM30a was ligated into a wildtype S. cerevisiae strain and also a strain deficient for Lem3. Through growth inhibition assays and FLOW cytometry, the function of TMEM30a was tested.


“An Investigation of Cryocooling”
*Martin Glose, Undergraduate
Crystallography is the study of proteins in their crystalline structure via a diffraction pattern usually from X-rays. The purpose of cryocooling is to slow down and reduce secondary radiation damage on macromolecules of the crystal during X-ray data collection. Once the crystal is hit by the beam the physical effects of the radiation will initially break chemical bonds. If the crystal is cryocooled the free radicals formed will be slowed down and ineffective toward the rest of the structure. Therefore the main advantage of cryocooling is to have a longer lasting crystal on the beam line, thus allowing us to retrieve the best possible results. Cryoprotectants are sometimes known as anti-freezes. We use them to eliminate crystalline ice that damages our protein crystals. Using these cryoprotectants, we are searching for the fundamental stage that would not produce ice. We, therefore, had to focus on the fact that Q/t =(kA(To-T1))/D.

“Analyzing Copper (II) Oxide Powder for Zinc Using Differential Pulse Stripping Voltammetry”
*Lindsey Syktich, Undergraduate; Faculty Sponsor: Dr. Michael Setter, Chemistry

This paper describes the development of a new technique to determine the surface composition of powders with differential pulse stripping voltammetry. This technique is demonstrated with copper(II) oxide. Differential Pulse is a highly sensitive type of anodic stripping voltammetry. It can be used to analyze the surface of powders by monitoring the dissolution of the powder in a solution without requiring the separation of the solution from the powder. This describes experiments run using the powder and a three electrode potentiostat that focused on seeing the activity of copper compared to zinc, using a thin film mercury electrode as the working electrode. Standardization studies are included that determine the effect of analyte concentration, and the amount of mercury plated on the electrode on the signal peak itself. Gallium was added to the solution in order to see zinc without interference from copper. This addition has been shown to be effective.

“Attentional Capture by Color in Red/Green Color Blind People”
*Dr. Janet D. Larsen, Psychology; Frank Kenner, John Carroll alumnus and Graduate Student, Kent State University

In two experiments the attention of red/green colorblind participants was affected by color in the same way as participants with normal color vision. Participants located an X in an array of nine angular or round grey letters. Across 360 trials, a colored target letter facilitated responding, and a colored distractor letter slowed responding compared to trials with no color. The effect was larger for angular than for round non target letters. In experiment one, red, green and blue had similar effects. In experiment two, green had the same effect even when non-target letters were in eight different shades of grey.

“Formation and Ossification of Bony Elements in the American Toad (Anaxyrus americanus)”
*Tara L. Ford and *Meghan Kolupski, Undergraduates; Advisor: Dr. Christopher Sheil,

Patterns of formation and ossification of the bony skeleton of frogs and toads are poorly understood, despite the fact that anurans are considered model organisms for studies of development. We examined numerous larval specimens of the American Toad (Anaxyrus americanus, a common terrestrial toad) to document patterns of formation and ossification in the cranial and postcranial skeleton of specimens incubated and grown at four different temperature treatments (constant high, low, and median temperatures, as well as a daily fluctuating regime). Similarities and differences in ossification patterns between these temperature treatments are discussed.

“Do Advanced Forms of Social Understanding Influence Views of Self, Others, and Civic Involvement?”
Ben Beehner, Anthony Tarescavage, and Adam Higgins, Undergraduates; Faculty Sponsor: Dr. Nicholas R. Santilli

This study is an extension of work presented at the 2007 Celebration of Scholarship. This earlier work examined how systemic views of society were associated with more general social concerns, the value of service, and personal identity. We turn now to an analysis of how views of society are related to psychosocial development in four domains: Care, competence, commitment and citizenship. Over 1200 participants from a larger study completed a survey cataloguing volunteer experiences, civic involvement, interpersonal relations, and identity. Participants’ narratives of views of society were analyzed using Youniss and Yates’ (1997) model of transcendence. Results show significant relationships between more systemic views of society and more advanced levels of caring, commitment to others, competence, and citizenship. These findings extend past research by Santilli, Falbo, and Harris (2002) which showed significant relationships between psychosocial development, volunteerism and reflection.

“A First Glance at Clinical Health Psychology”
Amanda Maggiotto, Undergraduate; Sponsor: Scott Meit, PsyD, Cleveland Clinic Foundation; Faculty Sponsor: Dr. Janet Larsen, Psychology

This presentation explores my first experience with clinical health psychology with Dr. Scott Meit at the Cleveland Clinic.  This presentation includes five case studies of patients I have observed over my summer internship. Those viewing my poster will be introduced to “Mike” a 40 year old man suffering from panic attacks, “Jim” a man suffering from Seasonal Affective disorder, “Tom” who has avoidant personality disorder, “Jenny” a young woman suffering from several abusive relationships, and lastly “Martha” a woman suffering from Somatization disorder.  You will learn about each of these disorders, how these patients experienced their symptoms, Dr. Meit’s suggested treatment, and what I learned from each case.  Please note that all names in quotes have been changed for client confidentiality purposes.