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Doctoral students working with faculty in the Biomolecular Sciences Institute recently received travel awards to present their research at two important national-level scientific meetings.

Pawlos Semere Tsegay

Biochemistry PhD candidate, Pawlos Semere Tsegay, mentored by Dr. Yuan Liu, was awarded the 2019 Environmental Mutagenesis and Genomics Society (EMGS) Student and New Investigator Travel Award for his poster presentation. In line with EMGS goals, the award will enable Semere Tsegay to share his current scientific research on “Incorporation of 5′,8-Cyclodeoxyadenosine lesions in the promoter sequence of MiRNAs by a DNA repair polymerase.” Along with presenting a poster, Semere Tsegay will also give a two-minute flash talk this month at the 50th EMGS Annual Meeting in the nation’s capital. The presentation will help him to establish long-term collaborative relationships and scientific interactions among scientists in his field of research.

Amirala Bakhshian Nik

Amirala Bakhshian Nik, a Biomedical Engineering PhD candidate in Dr. Joshua Hutcheson’s lab, received a travel scholarship to attend VASCULATA 2019 at the Medical College of Wisconsin, July 15-18. The VASCULATA meeting combines self-study programs, workshops and seminars on cardiovascular biology and cardiovascular disease from leaders in the field. Amirala studies the mechanisms of calcifying extracellular vesicle formation in vascular smooth muscle cells and osteoblasts from bone. These specialized extracellular vesicles mediate mineral formation in normal bone maintenance and diseased cardiovascular tissues. Amirala’s work seeks to understand similarities and differences in these normal and pathological processes and assess the ability of reagents that interact with mineral to treat bone and vascular diseases.

Melinda Hoder contributed to this story.