Abstracts

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Sanctions in Iraq: An Analysis of the Theoretical & Historical Aspects of Sanctions
Alia Aboul-Nasr
Mentor: Dr. Richard Matthew

On August 2, 1990, Iraq invaded Kuwait. Four days later the United Nation imposed sanctions. Sanctions have been enforced on Iraq for thirteen years, leaving the regime untouched while devastating the civilian population. This study will review the ethical, economic and international law aspects of sanctions using Iraq as a case study. Defiance of international law gave the United Nations authority to impose sanctions on Iraq allowing for major control of the economic system. The results of this paper are expected to increase the notion that imposing sanctions on Iraq is an ineffective method. The issue of politics intertwined with human rights becomes difficult to assess, however sanctions must be imposed in a humane fashion for them to work to prevent war.

Positive Displacement Fuel Delivery Systems
Oren Alfi
Mentor: Dr. William Sirignano

In today’s world, two of the main problems in mainstream fuel systems are the lack of precision and the lack of control. The fuel system I am designing and proposing is based on a syringe pump system, and will deliver a rate of fuel up to 1 g/s, have a very high control rate, and positional precision. I will achieve this by using a motor possessing a power of 1 J/s to turn a screw at a fine enough rate to push the piston down a cylinder, thus forcing the liquid to flow through positive displacement into a highly pressurized combustion chamber. I will also be building and testing the model to evaluate the results.

New York, New York: A Look at the New York Satellite Program
Jennifer Alvarez
Mentor: Dr. Myrona Delaney

The first thing that you miss in New York is the grass. This city has mastered the art of categorization. It separates its millions of people and things into the five boroughs, the diamond district, the fabric district, the theatre district, the parks, and the concrete. The first thing you lose is your sleep habits. The ability to drive down to the beach and ride the waves is sorely missed, but you can replace that thrill by walking 10 blocks uptown to Broadway Dance Center to take class led by a chorus member of Broadway’s Hairspray. Through interviews and participation I have seen the intensity the city sparks in its inhabitants. In workshops led by instructors specifically chosen for the New York Satellite Program, 25 UCI students are able to work exceptionally hard on their monologues, songs, and dance technique. In the evenings student rush tickets allow the students to catch a wide variety of shows, including those starring UCI alumni (Erin Crouch in 42nd Street and Jenn Colella as the female lead in Urban Cowboy). The program allows a view of the dedication and talent needed to survive the New York talent pool as well as the budgeting and careful consideration necessary to maintain a comfortable life in the city.

The Effects of Viewing Images of Females in Television Advertising on the Body Esteem of High School Girls
Linda Alves
Mentors: Dr. Geoffrey Iverson & Dr. Christine Lofgren

I investigated the effects of viewing images of females in television advertisements on the body esteem of high school girls, while accounting for television viewing levels. Fifty participants were exposed to a series of commercials that either contained images of females or lacked such images. Body esteem was measured as the score obtained on survey items that closely followed the Body Attitudes Questionnaire developed by Ben-Tovim and Walker (1991). Television viewing levels were measured as the average number of hours of television that each participant indicated she watches weekly. Data analysis is currently in progress. This analysis will yield information regarding the body esteem and television viewing levels of an average high school girl. This analysis will also indicate how the body esteem of a high school girl changes in response to exposure to images of females, considering the amount of television the subject typically watches. Furthermore, it will indicate whether certain aspects of a high school girl’s body esteem (e.g., feelings of fatness, salience of body-related attitudes) are more vulnerable than others to such exposure. The findings of the present study are expected to increase our understanding of the attitudes high school girls have toward their bodies and the role that television plays in shaping these attitudes.

Role of Serotonin in Manganese Supplementation of Neonatal Rats
Abigail Alviar
Mentor: Dr. Aleksandra Chicz-DeMet

Recent studies have found that dietary manganese (Mn) supplementation in rat pups significantly decreases striatal dopamine (DA). The aim of this study is to determine whether serotonin (5-HT) is similarly affected due to its association with DA in the brain. DAergic dysfunction, similar to the aforementioned changes in DA levels, has been linked to attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and other aberrant behaviors. Serotonin, which is directly related to the parasympathetic nervous system, is associated with aggression, irritability, and impulsive behavior that are also associated with ADHD as well as with the violent behaviors of incarcerated criminals. Neonatal pups on open diet were randomized into four dietary Mn supplementation groups: 0, 50, 250, and 500 m g per day. Tissue samples were collected and brain striatum was assayed for 5-HT levels. Serotonin levels were significantly elevated in the lowest Mn exposure group (50 µg/day) compared to the controls (p<0.03). However, increases in 5-HT levels in both the medium (250 µg/day) and high (500 µg/day) Mn exposure groups were not appreciably different from controls. Both 5-HT and DA were significantly correlated across all Mn treatment groups, including controls. These results lend support that heavy metal Mn toxicity affects both 5-HT and DA, which are associated with behavior and cognition.

Axillary Measurement of Pediatric Temperature Using a Cholesteric Liquid Crystal Matrix "The Traxit Device" in an Emergency Department
Marichris Ancheta
Mentor: Dr. Federico Vaca

The accuracy and reliability of methods in determining body temperatures in the pediatric population is fundamental to making proper clinical decisions during an acute illness. In febrile small children, the use of the rectal temperature measurement is the most accurate method (Gold Standard) used in most emergency departments to assess pediatric temperatures. Kai et al. found that rectal temperature measurements for some patients were invasive, uncomfortable, and a potential cause for psychological trauma in some patients. This study focuses on a less invasive alternative method of measuring pediatric body temperature. The comparison of the standardly used digital rectal temperature with the "TraxIt" device (cholesterol crystal—axillary temperature measurement) was observed in the emergency department. The TraxIt device is an adhesive body temperature monitoring device that is applied to the axilla of the suspected febrile child. The data was collected by enrolling 59 consented parents of children ranging from 0.5-2 years old. Rectal and axillary temperatures were measured simultaneously and a survey questionnaire was given to parents to evaluate their preference of measurement methods. The data suggested that parents preferred the axillary measurement than any other measurement method. However, although the study sample size was small, the TraxIt device was not found to closely correlate with the standard digital rectal temperature measurement. A 1.2 C offset to the TraxIt axillary measurement improved the sensitivity for predicting a fever and a larger sample size may have given a better correlation between the rectal and axillary measurement.

Risk and Protective Factors for Smoking in Older Foster Care Youth
Stephanie Andersson
Mentor: Dr. Chuansheng Chen

At any given time, there are approximately half a million U.S. children in foster care (The Administration for Children and Families, 1998). Although this population of youth has been intensely researched, few studies have been done on smoking behavior in foster care youth. Previous research has found that parental, peer, mentor, and sibling smoking as well as family factors are related to adolescent smoking behavior. As part of the current investigation, data are collected from surveys of older foster care youth in Orange and Los Angeles Counties. Survey questions focus on the youth’s smoking behavior and the smoking behavior of others in their social networks (e.g., foster parents, peers, and siblings). Further, a sample previously collected from 1,190 high school seniors will serve as a comparison. Data analysis focuses on differential rates of smoking between the two groups as well as trying to identify possible protective factors that prevent youth smoking. The study’s findings should shed light on factors that lead to or protect youth from choosing to smoke, as well as revealing whether or not foster care populations are at an increased risk of smoking as compared to a community sample.

Desire Caught by the Tail: Art in Response to War
Kristine Aubert
Mentor: Dr. Cliff Faulkner

In 1941, Pablo Picasso put away his paints and began writing. Three days later he completed Desire Caught by the Tail. The play expresses the hopelessness he and his fellow Parisians felt during that first winter of the German occupation of Paris. When a reading of the play was held in 1943, it was attended by many of Picasso’s friends, most notably Jean-Paul Sarte, Simone de Beauvoir, Marcelle Braque, Paul Eluard, and Albert Camus. Participating in this event was dangerous for all involved, but it created a sort of solidarity within a group of artists struggling to understand what was happening to the world and to humanity. Today the play still holds significance. America is at war with Iraq. The media is flooding the television, newspapers, radio, and magazines with up-to-date, around-the-clock coverage of a war that is taking place far from American soil. The world is changing. For a generation of artists that has little experience with war it is difficult to know what to think. It seems many art students have chosen not to think at all. Through research, rehearsal, and performance, the cast and crew of Desire Caught by the Tail will examine Picasso’s response to World War II and use the script as a base to create a collaborative production that will respond to the present and help shape the future.

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Affordable Housing and Needs: An Examination of California Redevelopment Agencies
Stan Bailey
Mentor: Dr. Victoria Basolo

A decent home for all Americans is a longstanding public policy goal. The availability of housing, especially for lower-income households in California, makes this goal difficult to achieve. California Redevelopment Law is intended to motivate local redevelopment agencies (RDAs) to provide housing to less well-off households. For example, tax increment financing and a mandated set-aside for low- and moderate-income housing are mechanisms created by the State legislature to facilitate affordable housing goals. Local RDAs, however, have been criticized by housing advocates for their use or non-use of the housing set-aside funds. Moreover, theory and empirical studies suggest that public officials and more affluent residents will resist affordable housing in their communities. Still, some RDAs do contribute to affordable housing. This research asks several questions about RDA affordable housing activities: 1) How well are City RDAs performing their state mandated mission to increase and/or improve affordable housing? 2) Are RDAs’ uses of housing set-aside funds correlated with need in the RDA community? Using RDA and Census 2000 data, this research examines the statistical relationships between the use of set-aside funds and needs in the RDA communities. The results include correlation coefficients between amount of funds, units produced or rehabilitated, a social need index, and housing vacancy rate as an indicator of the local housing market.

The Uniform Generation of Ultra-Small Molten Metal Droplets for Advanced Manufacturing
Michael Balancio
Mentors: Dr. Anthony Bright & Dr. Melissa Orme

In 1970, Rutland and Jameson studied the theoretical predictions of the sizes of drops formed in the breakup of capillary jets. They researched the breakup of liquid jets subjected to some small disturbances theoretically and experimentally. This current study builds upon their work using a non-linear theory to calculate the profile of the wave on the surface of the jet at the breakup, and the sizes of the main and satellite drop. In this research, we will compare and verify our results with the theory, and we are confident to get better results using modernized equipments.

Increasing Disability Awareness
Gregoria Barazandeh
Mentor: Dr. Caesar Sereseres

I am a Student Peer Mentor and Disability Services Center (DSC) Student Advisory Board member on campus. I have learned through experience that students with disabilities often underestimate the negative effect their disability(ies) can have on academic performance when they do not discuss the disability(ies) with faculty. Students often have limited knowledge of their own disabilities; they are timid, embarrassed and uninformed. At the same time, faculty members often have limited knowledge about the potentially negative effect of disabilities on student performance and little understanding of the benefit of adequate academic accommodations, including extended exam time, alternative test arrangements, and tape-recorded lectures. Significant factors that can enhance the chances for academic success among students with disabilities include appropriate and reasonable accommodations and strong, ongoing communication between those students and the faculty. I committed myself this year to providing information about disabilities to both students and faculty on campus and to facilitating increased communication between students with disabilities and their instructors. I developed a Disability Fact Sheet Handbook for students, faculty and staff. The fact sheets in the Handbook include information on many of the disabilities suffered by students currently on campus, including physical, learning, and psychological disabilities. This Handbook is the first comprehensive book of disabilities at UCI, and "is a useful and much needed tool on UC Irvine’s campus," according to Dr. Karen Meyers, Director of DSC. Well-informed students and faculty can challenge attitudes, create a clear understanding of the nature of disability, and advocate for useful and positive change within the university.

Elucidating the Mechanism of Annexin A1-Induced Membrane
Reema Basu
Mentors: Dr. Hartmut Luecke & Dr. Anja Rosengarth

Aggregation of cellular membranes, which eventually leads to fusion between two different membranes, is an important process that allows cells to communicate with their surroundings. The exact mechanisms of membrane aggregation and fusion are not clear, but are most likely protein mediated events. Annexin A1, a member of the annexin family, exhibits membrane aggregation and fusion properties. Our laboratory solved the crystal structure of the full-length annexin A1 in the absence of Ca2+. Based on this, a novel model for membrane aggregation mediated by this protein has been proposed. This model hypothesizes that initial calcium dependent binding to one membrane expels the previously buried N-terminal domain, creating a second membrane-binding site. The recently resolved structure of full-length annexin A1 in the presence of calcium demonstrated that the N terminal domain is expelled from the core. Further validation of this model is necessary to gain conclusive results. Two questions have been raised and are currently being addressed: 1) Is the N-terminal domain expelled in solution upon calcium binding? 2) Does the N-terminal domain alone interact with membranes? We created two mutants to answer our questions. One is a F7W/W125 mutant; the other consists of the N-terminal domain of annexin A1 fused to the N-terminus of Red Fluorescence Protein. The Trp mutant is for Trp Fluorescence Emission Spectroscopy; it will test for extrusion of the N-terminal domain from the core in solution. The fusion protein will be used in lipid binding assays to test possible interaction of the N-terminal domain with membranes.

Schwann Cells Remain Promyelinogenic After Exposure to Sustained Shear Stress
David Bear
Mentor: Dr. Ranjan Gupta

There remains a limited understanding of the molecular pathogenesis of carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS). Animal models have confirmed the pivotal role of Schwann cells in CTS. As there are both ischemic and direct mechanical stimuli associated with this peripheral neuropathy, we sought to determine how Schwann cells responded to mechanical stimuli alone. We evaluated Schwann cell response to shear stress in the form of laminar fluid flow after pure Schwann cell cultures were stimulated for two hours. Semi-quantitative reverse transcriptase-PCR was performed to evaluate MBP and MAG mRNA expression. We evaluated for cell proliferation (BrdU uptake), MAG, MBP and S-100 protein expression using immunohistochemistry (IHC). IHC demonstrated that the Schwann cell marker S-100 was present in greater than 99% of the experimental cells, confirming that shear stress does not induce Schwann cells to de-differentiate. Furthermore, IHC for MAG and MBP, markers for promyelinating Schwann cells, was also positive in greater than 99% of the evaluated cells. Mechanical stimulation increased the rate of Schwann cell proliferation by as much as 100% (p=.001). Consistent with in-vivo demyelination, the expression of MBP mRNA was shown to decrease by 46% (p=.041) in experimental cells. Similarly, there was a 42% decrease (p=.033) in MAG mRNA expression, consistent with in-vivo axonal sprouting. As shear stress represents one of the mechanical forces associated with CTS, this study provides novel information regarding the Schwann cell response to this physical stimulus.

A Study of Methane Production in a California Rice Paddy
Kathryn Bearden
Mentor: Dr. Stanley Tyler

The emission of methane, a green house gas, is environmentally important because of its increasing effect on global climate. One key source of methane that could possibly be regulated is the agricultural production of rice. In order to manage methane emissions in irrigated rice paddies, both methane production and consumption processes as well as the relationship between these and methane emissions must be better understood. This means determining how methane is affected by changes in water table, rice straw input, and organic fertilizer input throughout the season. This research addresses the question of how rice straw amendments and the timing of their input affect paddy field methane production (and hence emissions). In addition to determining the concentration of below ground (produced methane), determination of the partitioning of methane pathways of production during the season has been conducted to relate it to rice straw inputs and other factors. The measurements of stable carbon isotopes in below ground methane, below ground carbon dioxide, and emitted methane are used to partition the methane pathways. The two basic methanogenic pathways of acetate fermentation and CO2 reduction can be distinguished and quantified this way. One aspect that makes this study unique is that it is the first determination of pathways of methane production in a paddy field which combines the isotopic measurements of field parameters described above with isotope fractionation factors assigned to methanogenic bacteria from the identical paddy field. This should provide improved calculations of methane partitioning compared to previous studies.

Biochemistry of Shark Cartilage
Jennie Beltran
Mentor: Dr. Adam Summers

Sharks have inhabited the earth’s oceans for over 450 million years. They coexist in similar habitats as bony fish, but there are only 1,000 shark species compared to 25,000 bony fish species. A shark’s skeleton is composed entirely of cartilage instead of bone, yet they are able to grow large, swim fast, and crush hard-prey as well as any bony fish. We examined the skeletal morphology and biochemical composition of shark cartilage from a variety of species which live in diverse habitats and exhibit different lifestyles. We predict that relationships between specialized forms and functions would result in different cartilage compositions among species. Clearing and staining techniques were used to visualize the cartilaginous skeleton in situ. The biochemical composition of the shark cartilage was analyzed using gel electrophoresis and collagen assays. Preliminary results indicate that collagen and proteoglycan contents differ among shark species from different habitats. Future studies will determine the relative concentrations of proteoglycans, proteins, and minerals that comprise the cartilage from various shark species.

Ballot Access in the Supreme Court: A Recipe for Two-Party Hegemony?
Christina Benson
Mentor: Dr. Mark Petracca

Minor party and independent candidates have tried, and most often failed, at winning elections in all levels of elected office because of their political, cultural, financial, and academic inability to compete with the two major parties, the Democrats and the Republicans. These encumbered parties seeking entry and participation into the democratic process have routinely brought constitutional challenges to State election laws. My study focuses on the extent to which the U.S. Supreme Court has issued ballot access rulings that have helped to maintain two-party hegemony. I began this research with the hypothesis that the Court overridingly upheld legal barriers posed to the minor parties, specifically ballot access laws. Some data and methodology have been drawn from Lee Epstein and Charles Hadley’s 1989 published article on a similar subject. My focus is on moderately reworking their methods and updating their research. Seven of the nine major ballot access decisions in the last 20 years have delivered harsh blows to the interests of minor parties seeking solace from State election law, leading my initial conclusion to support my hypothesis. I am also more deeply examining the legal reasoning given by the Court’s majority dicta in order to more fully understand their attitudinal motivations toward the perceived "appropriate" role of parties other than the major two in the political process. This research is expected to update previous analysis of my topic and provide legal insight into the current state party politics in America.

Black Identity in a Non-Western Society: An Investigation of African Self-consciousness in Belizean College Students
Doriane Besson
Mentor: Dr. Thomas Parham

Investigation into the development of racial identity for Blacks has traditionally focused on the ways in which Blacks obtain and sustain a connectedness to their heritage and develop a positive sense of self, in relation to the realities of residing in a discriminatory and racist society. Most examinations of Black identity reflect the development and experiences of Blacks in western societies where Blacks are the minority and the dominant culture is White or Eurocentric. This study examined racial identity of Blacks outside of a western environment to investigate how Black identity is reflected in a post-colonial society in which Blacks are the majority and representative of the dominant culture. The African Self-Conscious Scale was administered to 180 students at the University of Belize. It is hypothesized that there will be a moderate level African Self-Consciousness for Belizean students and SES, political affiliation, and that district of origin will affect their levels.

Regulation of Serotonin Production by Sensory Signaling in C. elegans
Gabriela Blanco
Mentor: Dr. Ji Ying Sze

Serotonin is a neurotransmitter that regulates behavioral and metabolic patterns in both humans and animals. We aim to understand how serotonin system is regulated, using C. elegans as a model system. The C. elegans serotonergic system consists of 9 neurons divided into 5 classes. Our previous results showed that the tph-1 gene encodes the key enzyme of serotonin synthesis in C. elegans and that the expression of the tph-1 gene in different neuronal classes is regulated by different mechanisms. This research is to understand the mechanism which regulates the serotonin synthesis and function of a pair of ADF chemosensory serotonergic neurons. We have identified a set of mutants that specifically affect the tph-1 expression in ADF. We have cloned two mutant genes, nss-2(yz6) and nss-3(yz5) and found that they encode homologs of the TRP ion channels. Through staining wild type and mutant animals with anti-serotonin antibody, our results demonstrate that mutants show reduced serotonin accumulation mostly in ADF and in other serotonergic neurons. How does this reduction in serotonin in ADF affect the metabolism and behavior? It has been previously shown that tph-1 null mutants, which do not have serotonin, have metabolic defects. We found that nss-2, and nss-3 show similar metabolic defects, indicating that ADF neurons control metabolism. The TRP channels are expressed in ADF, as well as in olfactory neurons. Previous studies show that the TRP ion channels also regulate odor sensation and memory. However, nss-3(yz5) is a point mutation which affects serotonin synthesis in ADF but is apparently normal in odor sensation. This result indicates that having different mutations on distinct parts of the same gene have diverse effects on odor sensation.

Myelin Tolerizing DNA Vaccination in the Treatment of Spinal Cord Injury
Jennifer Blanco
Mentor: Dr. Hans Keirstead

The greatest amount of damage in spinal cord injury (SCI) occurs post-injury when a vertebrate organism’s immune cells migrate to the area of injury. Since the brain-blood barrier is cut in SCI, the immune cells come in contact with the myelin (the fatty, insulatory material that wraps spinal cord axons) of the spinal cord and begin to attack it (secondary inflammation). Post-injury secondary inflammation causes the demyelination of the spinal cord and worsens the damage by preventing signals from the brain from ever reaching their destinations. In recent studies conducted on multiple sclerosis (MS), a disease that also causes an organism’s immune system to attack its own cells or tissues (autoimmune diseases), DNA vaccines have been able to help the body become tolerant of self-antigens, thereby allaying the pathology. In this experiment, 120 SJL mice (exhibiting hypersensitive autoimmune response) will be vaccinated either before or after inducing spinal cord injury (in the form of a dorsal hemisection at T11) with DNA that codes for various myelin proteins, a Th2 inducing cytokine, or cocktails of the two. This will be done in the hopes that the immune systems of these animals will become more tolerant to self-myelin (as occurred in MS studies). The treated animals should not have as severe of an autoimmune response as the untreated ones once SCI occurs. Functional recovery will be assessed with frame-by-frame video analysis of open-field behavior. Additionally, immunohistochemical staining, imaging, and molecular analysis employing an ELISA and Q-RT-PCR will be used for neuropathological evaluation of lesion size, percentage of tissue sparing, extent of demyelination and inflammatory infiltration. We hope to find a correlation between these analyses and the behavioral outcome.

Estrogen Exposure Rapidly Elevates Nitric Oxide Production in Cerebral Vessels
Amin Boroujerdi
Mentor: Dr. Diana Krause

The hormone estrogen plays a significant role in the regulation of cardiovascular function. Acute effects of estrogen result in immediate dilation of cerebral blood vessels by increasing levels of nitric oxide (NO). We hypothesize that estrogen acts through an early response without transcription to activate certain kinases such as PI3 and Akt. This leads to increased activity of the enzyme that produces NO. We measured NO production in isolated cerebral blood vessels from ovariectomized female rats (OVX). We found estrogen can increase cerebrovascular NO production within 5 min and is maximally elevated after 30 min. Immunoblot analysis of vessels treated with estrogen shows increased levels of the phosphrylated state of Akt (p-Akt) and endothelial nitric oxide (p-eNOS). Immunoprecitation studies showed that estrogen receptor alpha (ERa) is complexed with eNOS in the vessels. Our results suggest physiological levels of estrogen can rapidly increase NO levels in cerebral vessels, through activation of the PI-3 Kinase/Akt/eNOS pathway. Our findings that estrogen increases vasodilator NO in cerebral blood vessels through an early response without transcription pathway contributes to a better understanding of the effects of this hormone, which at the moment is a promising but controversial potential therapy for stroke and other cardiovascular diseases.

Southern California Native American Cultures and U.S. Government: Independent or Interactive?
Georgiana Bostean
Mentors: Dr. Robert Garfias & Dr. Robert Henry Stevens

Culture is a multi-faceted, dynamic entity which exists in contexts of time and place, and is subject to change. In the past, culture was dependent upon the geographic location of a group and the ecology surrounding it. Today, with an increasingly modernized world, cultures are in contact with one another, and factors such as globalization and diffusion are key elements in culture change. Indigenous societies around the world have experienced cultural transformations, in part as a result of the mass migration of ethnic groups. In some cases, the migration led to or was an effect of colonization; consequently, many indigenous peoples saw their cultures altered due to increased interactions with different groups and the establishment of new governments. Although government can affect any culture, colonized indigenous peoples that have a unique relationship with the colonizer government are affected in distinct ways. Native Americans are human indigenous societies which have seen the colonial government’s affect on their cultures, and whose relationships with the external governments contributed to the multivariate transformations which occur. This study focuses on the ways in which the United States and California governments affect the contemporary cultures of Native American tribes indigenous to Southern California.

Effects of Mutant CREB Transcription Factors on the 3-Hydroxy-3-Methylglutaryl Coenzyme A Reductase Promoter
Andy Bourgeois
Mentor: Dr. Timothy Osborne

Cholesterol is an important molecule which is a critical component of cellular membranes and a precursor for many of the body’s hormones. Cholesterol levels must be carefully regulated by the body, however, as improper regulation has been implicated in atherosclerosis, diabetes, and hypertension and heart disease. Though some cholesterol is obtained through one’s diet, much of the cholesterol in the body is produced from endogenous sources. The enzyme HMG-CoA reductase governs the rate limiting step of the biosynthesis pathway which produces cholesterol. The gene promoter for this enzyme is activated by the protein SREBP. Acting alone, SREBP is a weak activator and requires other coactivators to appreciably activate the HMG-CoA reductase promoter. Previous studies have shown that the ubiquitous transcription factor CREB can coactivate the promoter in conjunction with SREBP. In an attempt to identify the principal regions of CREB required for its interaction with SREBP and the gene promoter, mutations were created in the CREB coding sequence. Through transient transfection studies in Drosophila SL2 cells, it is hoped that differences in the importance of the various domains of the CREB protein can be elucidated.

The Playground: Improvisation in Action
Anne Brashier
Mentor: Dr. Lisa Naugle

Performance art is a nebulous concept to most of the public. Images of boring, obtuse, or just plain weird "performance pieces" discourage artists from experimenting with potentially engaging and exciting ways of sharing with audiences. The Playground was created in a quest to actively engage audiences in the process of creating and performing dance and theatre. The Playground is a performance troupe based on collaboration and improvisation, which attempts to radically alter the way an audience coexists with a work of performance. Filling a void in the art community at UCI, The Playground brings musicians, dancers, and actors into direct interaction with audiences. By using text and movement, structured improvisation, and varying degrees of audience participation, The Playground draws the audience into an experience unlike any other at UCI. The Playground tries to both demystify the creative process of choreography and shatter the audience’s preconceptions of performance. Performing a variety of solo and group forms, The Playground has been met with excitement and intrigue. Using modern, jazz, yoga, authentic movement, contact, and other forms of performance, The Playground bases itself in dance and theatre improvisation techniques. While being neither specifically dance nor drama, but incorporating music, speech, and movement, The Playground is a foray into experimental and experiential theatre. In the moment of creation, the performers and the audience experience the creation of performance together, culminating in two performances in May.

Neo-Theogony
Evan Brashier
Mentor: Dr. Cliff Faulkner

The Neo-Theogony is an effort to synthesize the various characters and events constituting the Greek mythological tradition into a single narrative. Traditional attempts to include every Classic myth in one work result in dictionaries or collections containing discrepancies and impossibilities that are a by-product of the completeness for which these resources strive. It must be remembered that the playwrights who first adapted myths into performances for mass consumption freely altered the stories that were their inspiration. It is by this standard of artistic interpretation that the Neo-Theogony succeeds. Until now each story has been one piece of a puzzle, but there are too many pieces to create a clear picture, too many variations to complete a single narrative. In order to fit the pieces together, a comparative approach was used to align characters and events. Various sources provided options from which to create one storyline. The question of which event followed which was answered by determining who needed to be where and when. The resulting singular myth reveals information not only pertaining to the society that produced these stories but also to the people who continue to find relevance in their telling.

Estrogen Suppresses the Induction of Pro-Inflammatory Agents in Cerebral Blood Vessels
Holly Brevig
Mentor: Dr. Diana Krause

Numerous studies have shown estrogen as a neuroprotectant against experimental stroke. However, the protective mechanisms of estrogen are not clear. We investigated the hypothesis that 17ß-estradiol treatment of ovariectomized rats suppresses production of pro-inflammatory agents induced by cytokines such as IL-1ß or ischemic insult. Cerebral blood vessels isolated from 17-ß estradiol treated and non-treated ovariectomized rats were isolated and examined for cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) and IcBa protein levels by immunoblot analysis. Furthermore, the nuclear extracts were examined for NFcB DNA binding activity by ELISA. Cerebral blood vessels from 17ß-estradiol treated and non-treated mice subjected to experimental stroke were isolated and examined for COX-2 protein levels by immunoblot analysis. We report that estrogen treatment suppresses the induction of IL-1ß derived COX-2 by suppressing NFcB DNA binding activity. Furthermore, estrogen does not inhibit NFcB induction by blocking IcBa degradation. We also found that estrogen suppresses COX-2 production of prostaglandin E2 (PGE2) after IL-1beta administration. In mice subjected to experimental stroke, cerebral blood vessels from estrogen-treated animals had lower levels of COX-2. In conclusion, we have demonstrated a mechanism by which estrogen regulates cytokine-mediated inflammatory processes.

Fabrication of MEMS Microchannels for Biological Applications
Jacqueline Bulaclac
Mentors: Dr. John LaRue & Dr. Richard Nelson

The need to detect, count, size, and/or separate individual microscopic particles exists in a wide variety of fields. For example, microfluidic devices are finding increasing use in the detection and/or counting of colloid, virus, and DNA particles, or potential pathogens. Particle detection allows the high-speed separation/sorting; where a detection "signature" is sorted out for further analysis. The original Coulter counter is a device that performs this function automatically for particles suspended in an electrolyte. In this instrument, the particles are caused to flow, due to pressure difference, through a small current-carrying aperture. Change in resistance can be successfully measured by the change in the voltage across the aperture while maintaining the current constant. The variation in the voltage is effectively an amplitude modulation (i.e., pulse), and the number of particles flowing in the channel would be counted by the number of pulses. Furthermore, the dimensions of a particle can be correlated to the voltage change, thus giving a reasonably accurate means of finding the volume, or "size," of each particle. But, the decomposition of the aqueous electrolyte, the noise of the electronics, the electrical noise of the medium, location of the particle in the channel, and the size of the particle in relation to the channel are limiting factors. In this project, the channel dimensions, the electrode placement, and the current source amplitude, bandwidth, and modulation/demodulation were utilized to experimentally evaluate the particle "signatures" for a range of particles.

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Analysis and Modeling of Thalamocortical Circuit Computation Underlying Perception
Christopher Cabanne
Mentor: Dr. Richard Granger

Thalamocortical circuits are the fundamental components of neocortex, the largest structure in the mammalian brain. They consist of a six layer cortical structure, of which the superficial layer (layers II and III) participates in a circuit that receives processed sensory input from the thalamus, and produces inhibitory outputs back to the thalamus. The system also incorporates the biological rules whereby synapses change with repeated activity, such that the behavior of the circuit slowly changes, or learns, over time. Initially in the model, a set of similar inputs produce a slightly different responses from superficial layer to each input cue; however, after training, similar inputs will produce identical first cycle responses, effectively clustering like inputs in a common category. Because of the feedback loop in the circuit, it emits more than one output in response to a single input. The first response sends inhibition back the thalamus input structure, "masking out" the portion of the input responsible for the response, such that the second (and subsequent) inputs are each wholly different, and elicit entirely different cortical response patterns. The same learning mechanisms that caused initial patterns to converge to the mean of the similar inputs to which they respond cause subsequent responses to converge to sub-categories, then sub-sub-categories, etc. The final result is a system that performs the task of hierarchical clustering of high dimensional data with favorable time and space constraints to previously known algorithms.

Comparative Analysis of State Welfare Programs
Edgar Cabral
Mentor: Dr. Philip Cohen

One of the most significant legislative bills of the ’90s was the passage of the 1996 Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act (PRWORA). The new Temporary Aid for Needy Families (TANF) program replaced Aid to Families with Dependent Children (AFDC), creating many more requirements for individuals to receive benefits, most notably creating time limits and work requirements. Although discussions of welfare reform typically revolve around whether the program has been successful as a whole, they typically ignore the other important aspect of the PRWORA: the reform has given virtually all power to the states, creating a wide spectrum of welfare programs. Because the PRWORA allows states to determine factors such as amount of aid, work requirements, sanctions for noncompliance, and exemptions from participation, it is possible that some programs could be very successful while others are complete failures. This study seeks to determine two important facts: which state programs have been the most successful in moving individuals from welfare to work, and which factors of state programs are the most important in determining the success of a program. In order to determine these facts, a comparative analysis of several state programs has been done. The analysis of the programs is done using data on caseload drops, recidivism rates, and success of individuals off welfare.

The Role of Mentoring in the Legal Profession
Samantha Campbell
Mentor: Dr. Calvin Morrill

Previous studies about the mentor-mentee relationship have focused primarily on educational and corporate contexts. While previous studies have shown the importance of mentoring programs, they have lacked emphasis on the dynamics and significance of informal mentorship (i.e., not officially sponsored by any organization) in the professions. The legal profession has been neglected in previous studies on the effects of mentoring although the impacts of mentors in the new attorney’s careers are great. Preliminary analyses of in-depth interviews with a snowball sample of 15 attorneys, in both the public and private sectors, suggest that individuals practice and experience informal mentoring in very different ways. In particular, informal mentoring has been shown to broaden a mentee’s career aspirations, allow for networking, and provide emotional support. While all attorneys had the benefit of a mentor, the ways in which they obtained that mentor were different. The interviews showed under what conditions the mentor-mentee relationship occurred, the gender differences in the practice, and the concerns that attorneys have about the quality of mentoring in their organizations.

Student Rights on the Internet
Vanessa Candelaria
Mentor: Dr. Pamela Kelley

The introduction of the Internet into classrooms across the United States raises novel legal issues as to the boundaries of students’ First Amendment rights both inside and outside of school. This research combines an analysis of current legal precedents with experimental surveys to demonstrate the growing challenges of student rights on the Internet. Most high school and college students admit to using the Internet at school. The majority of those surveyed also acknowledge a school speech code and computer policy, however, a greater percentage indicate that they have not read their school policy regarding Internet use. Furthermore, high school students are more accepting of government regulation and age restrictions on the Internet whereas college students are more likely to oppose any punishment of online activities. More than eighty percent of the students surveyed feel that it is more appropriate to speak freely on the Internet than in a classroom or in front of an audience. The combination of student unawareness and inconsistent case precedents has led to several litigations in which a pendulum swings for and against student rights. Most cases rely on the "Tinker test," in which the situation must "materially or substantially disrupt the educational process." However, this test should be modified to accommodate the increasing demands of technology entering the classrooms. Since the terms of the Tinker test are somewhat subjective, the new test should provide specific guidelines as to what would constitute a ‘disruption.’ Also, there should be rules that address off-campus versus on-campus school-related speech.

Morphometric Remodeling of the Porcine LCX Artery in Congestive Heart Failure
Blanca Carmona
Mentor: Dr. Ghassan Kassab

A complete set of morphometric data of coronary arteries of both congestive heart failure and control pigs has been presented from previous experiments in Dr. Kassab’s laboratory for the purpose of establishing a mathematical model of the treelike branching patterns of the coronary vasculature. These data include measurements of the diameters and lengths of each blood vessel segment in the right coronary artery (RCA), left anterior descending artery (LAD), and the left circumflex artery (LCX). Prior to this quarter I carried out the task of assigning order numbers to each vessel segment of the left circumflex artery in a normal and congestive heart failure pig heart using Strahler’s model for treelike structures. The data obtained can then be used to compare the differences in the mean diameter of blood vessels in congestive heart failure and normal pigs. Concurrently, a computer program was developed to structure this data automatically. In order to validate this computer program, we will structure the same data using this program and compare it with the results from our previous analysis.

Advanced Exploration of Puppetry
Sean Cawelti
Mentor: Dr. Cliff Faulkner

In the world of live theater and performance, directors, designers and actors can utilize the magic of puppetry to bring a story to life in new and exciting ways. Puppetry is the art of bringing the inanimate to life, and is regarded by many as a mystical process. As a theatre director and puppeteer of many years I desired nothing else than to receive formal training on this often mysterious art form. Last summer I had the fantastic opportunity to travel to New York City and study puppetry at New York University’s prestigious Tisch School of the Arts. While in New York, I spent time learning several advanced theories of puppetry manipulation and performance technique. While studying I realized more than ever that anything can be a puppet. A puppet is a sacred object that within the hands of a skilled manipulator is able to transcend known boundaries and take on a life of its own.

The Conformations of the 1,2,4-Trioxane Ring System and Antimalarial Compounds
Chansa Cha
Mentor: Dr. Fillmore Freeman

Ab initio molecular orbital theory and density functional theory (B3LYP) with the 6-31+G(d,p) and 6-311+G(d,p) basis sets have been used to study the chair-to-chair and twist-to-twist interconversions and to calculate the energy differences, enthalpies, entropies, free energies, and structural parameters for the respective chair and 3,6-twist conformers of 1,2,4-trioxacyclohexane (1,2,4-trioxane). The 1,2,4-trioxacyclohexane is the basic oxygen heterocycle of antimalarial compounds. At the B3LYP/6-31+G(d,p) level of theory the chair conformer has the lowest energy. The 3,6-twist conformer is more stable than the 1,4-twist and 2,5-twist conformers and is 5.91 kcal/mol higher in energy than the chair conformer. The transition state between the interconversion of the chair and 3,6-twist conformers is 18.14 kcal/mol higher in energy than the chair conformer. Additional calculations were performed on the isomers of the 1,2,4-trioxane, the 1,2,3-trioxane and 1,35-trioxane, at the B3LYP/6-311+G(d,p) level of theory. The chair conformer of the 1,3,5-trioxane is more stable than the 1,2,4-trioxane (52.17 kcal/mol) and 1,2,3-trioxane (96.36 kcal/mol) chair conformers.

A 40 BPS Speech Coding Scheme
Anshuman Chadha
Mentor: Dr. Cristina Lopes

Traditional speech coding schemes handle acceptable quality speech at bit rates over 2,000 bits per second. This project is based on an extremely low bit-rate speech coding scheme, on the order of 40 bits per second. In order to get such a low compression rate, all recognized speech is converted into the morphological level (i.e., the actual words), with low-level elements such as tone and frequency completely disregarded. The words are then coded using a probability-based compression mechanism. This coded data is then decoded and decompressed using Text-To-Speech. Initial results of our experiment show that, while there were errors introduced by the speech recognition engine, the human listeners were sometimes able to recover from such errors by inferring what was trying to be expressed. Further, we observed that errors made by the human listeners in recognizing the synthesized samples were highly dependent on the content of the samples, especially with regard to the familiarity the listeners had with the topic of the samples. Further experimentation will point to which areas need to be improved, so that the method can be perfected and used to improve existing technologies, ranging from basic telecommunication to low-channel communication used by the military.

Elucidating the Binding Mechanism of Oleylethanolamide to the Ligand Binding Domain of PPAR alpha Using X-Ray Crystallography
Marci Chala
Mentors: Dr. Hartmut Luecke & Dr. Anja Rosengarth

Peroxisome proliferator-activated receptors (PPARs) are part of the super family of nuclear receptors comprised mainly of a DNA binding domain (DBD) and a ligand binding domain (LBD). We are working with the LBD of PPAR alpha, a member of the PPARs that has been shown to play a critical role in the regulation of cellular uptake, activation, and beta-oxidation of fatty-acids. The molecule oleylethanolamide (OEA) is found in the small intestines of anorexic mice and is a possible natural ligand for PPAR alpha. The goal of this project is to validate the possible interaction of PPAR alpha’s LBD with OEA through structural and functional studies. We have successfully purified the protein. We wanted to start crystallization set-ups, however, crystallization of the protein with the ligand could not take place as planned because OEA is more hydrophobic than previously thought. We could not add sufficient amounts of OEA to the PPAR alpha LBD in solution because OEA precipitated as soon as we added it to the protein solution. To increase the solubility of OEA, we mixed the OEA in different solutions while switching them to different pHs and trying different detergents. We saw partial solubility in Luria Broth and also partial solubility in ethanol. Once we get this step done, we will try to make crystals. For the initial screening we will use the Hampton Crystal Screen I and II solutions and the BioEmerald Screening kits I and II and Cryo I and II.

Conflicting Representations: Legal and Literary Constructions of Chinese Americans, 1830-1910
Chiayu Chang
Mentor: Dr. Lindon Barrett

Between the late nineteenth century and the early twentieth centuries, the formal legal status of Chinese immigrants underwent tremendous transformations as the United States government and the general population struggled to properly classify this perceived group of temporary laborers. This thesis traces the general historical development of Chinese-American identity from 1830 to 1910, analyzing how the sudden exponential growth of the Chinese population affected people’s perceptions of Chinese from temporary laborers to permanent residents. In particular, this thesis examines the marginalized status of the Chinese community as it attempts to negotiate Chinese customs with American values. In a larger sense, it also looks at how the Chinese/Chinese-American community gradually becomes dehumanized through formal legislation enacted at that time. Moreover, this thesis traces how these elements of marginality and ambiguity play out in the texts of the notable Eurasian author, Sui Sin Far. I have chosen Sui Sin Far (Edith Maude Eaton) as my primary literary source not only because she was one of the first published authors of Chinese ancestry, but because her texts deal specifically with stereotypes of Chinese Americans during that time frame. I would like to suggest that while Sui Sin Far’s literature initially appears to reiterate many negative stereotypes of the Chinese, a closer analysis of the stories shows how she is, in fact, undermining those prejudicial characteristics and constructing a more positive image of Chinese Americans as a positive component of American society.

Mechanical Stimulation of Peripheral Neural Tissue Alters the Process of Myelination
Tom Chao
Mentor: Dr. Ranjan Gupta

The myelin sheath characteristic of the symbiosis involved in neuron and Schwann cell function is an insulating layer of phospholipids, native glycoproteins, and basic proteins. Electrical conduction of action potentials along the axon is exponentially accelerated by reason of the myelin sheath’s ability to speed electrochemical currents to portions of the axon at which current may be replenished in direct route to axon terminals, a process known as salutatory conduction. For this reason, myelin degradation has served as a primary focal point to investigate neuropathological diseases in which action potential propagation is considerably obstructed or slowed. In our in-vivo animal model of chronic nerve compression (CNC), stereologic techniques and immunohistochemistry (IHC) have demonstrated that there is minimal macrophage recruitment with substantial alteration myelin integrity in the early weeks of compression injury. In order to confirm the absence of a substantial inflammatory response in the demyelinating axon subjected to CNC, an in-vitro model was developed with myelinating cocultures of Schwann cells and dorsal root ganglion neurons which were subjected to a circumscribed interval of amplified hydrostatic pressure. Fluorescent IHC evaluation with an antibody against myelin basic protein clearly delineated a random distribution of myelin debris in concert with known patterns of demyelination. These in-vitro data are consistent with our in-vivo model and provide early evidence that CNC induced demyelination is not immune-mediated.

Congressional Staff: An Alternative Means of Descriptive Repression
Jacqueline Chattopadhyay
Mentor: Dr. Mark Petracca

In 1991, Sally Friedman and Robert Nakamura extended Robert Salisbury and Kenneth Shepsle’s 1981 study of 1962-78 congressional staff turnover to examine (1) the degree to which U.S. Senate committee staff composition had changed from 1977-87 to reflect women’s increasing presence in higher educational and occupational ranks and as elected officials and (2) what factors within the congressional context explained variation in women’s representation across U.S. Senate committee staff. This research paper extends Friedman and Nakamura’s inquiry to study (1) whether, from 1989 to 2001, the staff of seventeen selected U.S. House and Senate committees has come to mirror the increasing presence of (a) women, (b) racial/ethic minorities, and (c) the foreign born in American educational and professional institutions, and (2) what factors explain aggregate and inter-committee trends. This paper checks whether (1) the percentage of female, foreign born, and racial/ethnic minority staff and (2) the percentage of female, foreign born, and racial/ethnic minority staff holding "professional" positions are correlated to committee staff size, staff turnover, orientation, subject matter, and chamber majority party. It adopts several components of Friedman and Nakamura’s research framework. It goes beyond Friedman and Nakamura’s examination of internal committee variables by additionally examining whether differing education levels of female, foreign born, and racial/ethnic minority staff account for differences in each group’s presence in committee staff overall and in professional staff positions in comparison to male, white, and native born staff. Finally, this paper speculates on research findings’ potential implications for representation in federal policymaking.

A BiCMOS 10Gb/s Adaptive Cable Equalizer
Pruthvi (Peter) Chaudhari
Mentor: Dr. Michael Green

A coaxial cable, usually made of two metal wires one embedded in the other, distorts the passing signal by attenuating its amplitude and shifting the signal phases. The transmission-line effects of a cable significantly distort high-frequency signals such as the 10 Giga-bits per second (Gb/s) digital data signal. Put simply, when such digital signals are sent through a coaxial cable, the receiver system cannot distinguish between datum of ‘1’ (high) or ‘0’ (low). This is when an equalizer system comes to the rescue. The presented equalizer restores the signal by correcting its amplitude and the rise- and fall-time using novel circuit topologies. A cable equalizer for 10 Gb/s broadband data using a Silicon Germanium (SiGe) Bipolar-Complementary-Metal-Oxide-Semiconductor (BiCMOS) process is presented by this research project. The system consists of a feedforward and a feedback path. The feedforward path is comprised of the following system blocks: a mixer, a slicer, and an output driver. The feedback path contains the following: two detectors and an integrator. The purpose of the feedback loop is to fine-tune a desired variable (t*: rise- and fall-time) as the cable length is varied. In other words, if t* of the data signal is changed due to change in the cable length, which is directly proportional to the net signal attenuation, the t* of an internal signal will be compensated by the feedback loop to generate a corrected output. Due to this compensating nature, the system is called an adaptive equalizer. For this project, a microchip was fabricated at Jazz Semiconductors, Inc. using its SiGe BiCMOS process technology. The equalizer was also tested and successfully verified at GTran, Inc.

The HABLA Pre-School Intervention Program: Assessment of Outcomes on Language Development
Mayra Chavez
Mentor: Dr. Virginia Mann

Language Development requires a learning environment that is inductive to the development of language. Studies have shown that low-income children sometimes do not have the type of supportive environment that exposes them to language development opportunities (Baker et al., 1998). HABLA (Home Based Activities Building Language Opportunities) is a pre-school early intervention program that helps low-income Latino children in Santa Ana, California, enhance their language. It does so by providing a qualified and trained researcher to model verbal and non-verbal interaction to the children’s parents with the aid of specialized books and toys. The instrument used in this study to assess the language level is the Pre-School Language Scale (PLS). The PLS measures both expressive and receptive language. It is given at the beginning and at the end of the intervention program. The purpose of this study is to assess the effectiveness of HABLA as a pre-school intervention program by comparing the PLS scores of the children in the program and those of a control group. A control group of children was obtained and given the PLS. The data from the control group was then subjected to t-tests using SPSS and compared to the data of the participants in the HABLA intervention program. The results demonstrate a significant difference in the language level between children in the HABLA program and those not in the program. Children in the control group had lower language levels as measured by the PLS.

Effect of Amyloid Beta Peptide Treatment on Glycogen Synthase Kinase-3Beta in Cultured Rat Hippocampus
Giri Chelian
Mentor: Dr. Xiaoning Bi

Recent studies have shown that integrin antagonists enhance the uptake of the 42 residue form of amyloid beta peptide (Aß1-42). It is hypothesized that a critical intracellular level of Aß1-42 must be reached before triggering neurodegeneration and subsequent formation of amyloid plaques, a pathologic hallmark of Alzheimer’s disease (AD). Previous studies showed that treatment of cultured hippocampal neurons with Aß1-42 activated glycogen synthase kinase 3beta (GSK-3ß), a kinase involved in the phosphorylation of tau and subsequent formation of neurofibrillary tangles (NFT). The present study tested whether the integrin binding peptide GRGDSP (RGD)-dependent increase in the uptake of Ab by cultured hippocampal slices is followed by the activation of GSK-3ß. Preliminary results from the present study did not reveal any significant change in the levels of activated GSK-3ß, which is inconsistent with results obtained from dissociated neuronal cultures. The present study also tested the effects of the brain derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) on GSK-3ß.

Optical Detection of Water Drop Oscillations
Jeff Chen
Mentor: Dr. Peter Taborek

The purpose of this project is to develop a method to study the oscillation of superfluid drops. Superfluidity has been the center of much scientific research because it allows for the study of quantum mechanics on a macroscopic scale. This experiment uses an optical method for measuring oscillation properties of fluids; water drops were used for this initial study. A Dual Element Photodiode has been used to create a Position Sensing Device (PSD). A laser beam reflects off of a water drop resting on a Piezo Bender driven glass plate while the PSD detects the reflected beam. Data gathered from the experiment determines the damping time and frequency for various water drop oscillations. On a clean glass surface with a low contact angle, analysis of the results reveals that the theoretical scaling of damping time and frequency is correct. However, scaling of data from a drop on a coated surface with a higher contact angle is different than the predicted scaling. These results imply that there may be additional factors in oscillation damping other than viscosity. Specifically, there may be additional energy loss due to interactions between the drop and the surface it rests upon, which suggests that superfluid drops may not display their infinite, theoretical, damping time.

Effects of Music on the Mood and Motivations of Male and Female College Students
Jessica Cheung
Mentor: Dr. Alison Clarke-Stewart

The purpose of this study is to determine whether males and females react differently to sad and happy music, and whether music motivates gender-specific behaviors. If males and females have been socialized to conform to gendered roles, then women would report greater emotional reactions and seek social interactions after listening to mood-inducing music, while men would report less emotional changes and seek more competitive activities. In this study, 84 female and 42 male college students (n=126) answered questionnaires before and after listening to two selections of music— one happy and one sad. Subjects rated their moods on a 5-point scale before and after listening to music and they provided responses about what the music made them feel like doing. The music used in this study came from a previous study by Peretz, Gagnon and Bouchard (1998). Data is currently being analyzed to determine the extent to which gender, musical experience & preferences, and ethnicity influence reactions to music. In addition, implications of these findings for therapeutic uses of music as well as on the emotional processing of different genders will be discussed.

A Growth Algorithm for the Coronary Arterial Tree
Monica Cheung
Mentor: Dr. Ghassan Kassab

Biomedical research is a scientific quest to understand and interpret quantitatively the systems of the human body. My current project in Dr. Ghassan Kassab’s Cardiovascular Biomechanics lab studies the cardiovascular system which includes the arterial vessels, veins, and the heart. There lacks quantitative models of the cardiovascular system and as such, this current study uses previously measured lengths and diameters of pig coronary vessels in a computer simulation program that reconstructs the entire arterial network. The data sets were entered with the left anterior descending artery (LAD) as the origin followed by subsequent branches. The branches are monitored in an excel file that assigns each branching to a parent "node" with the appropriate diameters and lengths. Data analysis is still in progress with the intent of designing further modeling experiments based on the simulations. The results of this study will be invaluable in studying human conditions such as hypertension and possible applications in predicting coronary plaque build-up.

Drug Court and Proposition 36: Comparison of Two Models of Drug Policy Reform
Sae-Rin Cho
Mentor: Dr. John Dombrink

California’s Substance Abuse and Crime Prevention Act (SACPA) is a sentencing reform that allows non-violent drug offenders the opportunity to receive drug treatment in lieu of incarceration. California voters passed this initiative, as Proposition 36, in 2000 and allocated $120 million annually for five years. Proposition 36 took effect on July 1, 2001, and is expected to save California taxpayers $1.5 billion over the five-year period of time by lowering the incarceration rate. An earlier reform model, drug courts have spread through about four hundred counties since the initial drug court in Miami in 1989. While drug courts have been implemented with similar objectives of providing treatment to drug offenders and lowering incarceration rates, there are important systematic differences between the drug court and Proposition 36. This study compares drug court and Proposition 36 case processing through courtroom observations and interviews with substance abuse treatment providers in Orange County and Los Angeles County, California. This study has two major sections: a) it examines the differences of the two reforms in courtrooms and treatment centers; b) it explores the nature of courts, counselors, and clients in the recovery process. The analysis will allow in-depth discussion on qualities that appear to contribute to a higher success rate of the drug policy reforms.

The Study of Particle Formation in Jaagsiekte Sheep Retrovirus
Jody Chou
Mentor: Dr. Hung Fan

Ovine Pulmonary Adenocarcinoma (OPA) is a contagious disease that affects the respiratory system in sheep. Previous studies have pointed out a close association between Jaagsiekte Sheep Retrovirus (JSRV) and OPA. Moreover, it was recently discovered that the presence of JSRV is sufficient enough to induce OPA both in vitro and in vivo. As an airborne disease, OPA poses danger to flocks of animals, especially those found in high-risk regions. Clinical and pathological studies have also found great similarities between OPA and human bronchiolo-alveolar carcinoma (BAC), thus the molecular analysis of JSRV not only provides invaluable data critical for the development of solutions for OPA related veterinary problems, but also offers new insight into the understanding of human BAC. Copies of retroviral genomes are found to be incorporated into most ovine genomes. These endogenous retroviruses, though closely related to JSRV, result in no viral production. Comparisons between JSRV and its endogenous counterpart have revealed two variable regions in the gag amino acid sequence. These regions, VR1 and VR2, were hypothesized to be responsible for the difference in particle formation. To test the roles of VR1 and VR2, recombinants of the two regions were constructed: the exogenous VR1 and VR2 were replaced by the endogenous sequences and vice versa. Transfection assays showed that the process of substituting exogenous sequence with that of endogenous and vice versa did not alter their nature in particle formation. Therefore, the VR1 and VR2 regions were not the sole determinants for particle production.

Applying Developmental Biological Process to Scalable Adaptive Network Design
Roger Chou
Mentors: Dr. Tatsuya Suda & Dr. Junichi Suzuki

The Bio-Networking Architecture is a paradigm for the design and implementation of scalable, adaptive, and survivable network applications for computer systems that are based on biological systems. Its applications are constructed using a collection of autonomous mobile agents, called cyber-entities. Each cyber-entity dynamically selects its behaviors (e.g., migration, replication and reproduction) determined by a complex network of possible behaviors. The creation of this behavior network is done manually by a human designer through the laborious task of trial and error and as this network increases in size, the task becomes even more time consuming and error prone. A possible solution to these problems can be found in developmental biology. Developmental biological processes involve the development of an organism from a single cell to a complex multicellular organism using limited information stored in the genome. The genome does not provide the exact specifications for the creation of an organism; instead a developmental process is involved from the decoding of the genome to the development of the complex organism. When applied to the Bio-Networking Architecture this reduces the human labor needed to specify the initial network configuration with developmental rules that expand the semantics of limited information to specify the entire complex network. The reduction of the information also improves scalability, allowing for larger and more complex behavior networks to be developed from limited information. This presentation overviews the design and implementation of the proposed developmental process, and illustrates its simplicity and scalability.

Metabolic Engineering of 1,2-Propanediol Production by Kluyveromyces lactis
Woo-Suk Chun
Mentor: Dr. Nancy Dasilva

Metabolic engineering is the modification of existing metabolic pathways or the introduction of new metabolic pathways in microorganisms. We are investigating the introduction of a pathway to produce 1,2-propanediol in yeast. 1,2-propanediol is one of the major chemicals produced in the United States, and can be used in pharmaceutical manufacturing as a solvent for drugs unstable in water, polyester resins, etc. Previous engineering of the metabolic pathways in the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae resulted in the production of 1,2-propanediol from glucose. We are extending this work to the promising industrial yeast Kluyveromyces lactis. The mgs and gldA genes from Escherichia coli have been introduced into K. lactis to divert some of the carbon in the glycolytic pathway to 1,2-propanediol. The mgs and gldA DNA sequences were inserted into a K. lactis CEN-ARS plasmid KCp491. K. lactis strain CXJ7-1A was then transformed with the KCp491-gldA-mgs plasmid. Both gldA and mgs gene products were synthesized in active form. An HPLC analysis is being employed to determine the level of 1,2-propanediol produced in K. lactis.

An Examination of the Mud Splash Effect for Faces in a Change-Blindness Paradigm
Sara Clancy
Mentor: Dr. Donald Hoffman

A prominent saying in our culture declares "seeing is believing." However, consider this less ubiquitous stance: "seeing is not always perceiving." According to this conception, the exhibition of amply available visual information to scanning eyes is not sufficient to ensure perception of the image. Attention is a crucial factor. Previous change-blindness experiments have sought to examine the attentional processes underlying image perception by investigating change detection in environmental scenes. Davies and Hoffman (2002) extended the change-blindness paradigm to address face perception. It has been proposed by O’Regan, Rensink, and Clark (1999) that imposing an array of discrete shapes, or "mud splashes", upon an image within the change blindness paradigm can be advantageous as it precludes the need for the typical "flicker" screen. As the mud splash effect has yet to be related to the unique attentional processing of faces, the present study seeks to investigate the mud splash effect for faces in the context of a change-blindness paradigm. In this 2 X 2 repeated measures design, trial type of face varies within two levels: change and no change. Orientation of face varies within two levels: inverted and upright. Reaction time and proximity of changes to central features of the face will be analyzed for both variables. Though results of this study are currently undergoing analysis, an increased reaction time is predicted for inverted faces versus upright faces, and a decreased reaction time is predicted for changes of high proximity to the central features versus changes of low proximity.

Laser-Induced Fluorescence and Absorption Spectroscopy in Iodine
Janelle Clausen
Mentor: Dr. Roger McWilliams

Laser-induced fluorescence (LIF) occurs when incident laser light of a specific frequency causes the target molecules to emit a photon. The necessary laser frequency is dependent on the velocity of the target molecules relative to the laser beam; the excitation frequency must compensate for the Doppler shifted frequency of the moving particles. This experiment uses two tunable diode lasers incident on an iodine source and scanned over a range of frequencies, one centered at 668 nm and the other centered at 1315 nm. Plotting the number of photons emitted from the iodine source versus the laser frequency yields an LIF velocity spectrum. The velocity distribution function, fi(v), is calculated after calibrating the LIF frequency and can be used to compute the temperature of the iodine. Calibration entails using an iodine cell and an "iodine atlas" to match the fluorescence peaks in the LIF spectrum. Laser absorption measurements in plasma produce results similar to the LIF technique except that the absorbed laser radiation is recorded instead of the photons emitted by the iodine. The absorption spectroscopy also produces a velocity distribution function, which is analyzed to determine the plasma temperature.

The Effect Student Gender has on the Frequency and Severity of Discipline Methods Implemented by Third and Fourth Grade Teachers in Response to Disruptive Classroom Behavior
Andrea Collier
Mentor: Dr. Michael Scavio

Discipline and classroom management have long been prominent issues within elementary schools. In 1980, Emmer, Evertson, and Anderson found that teachers who were effective classroom managers had clear rules for general conduct and were consistent with their disciplining of students. The current study builds upon their work by investigating how some third and fourth grade teachers may not be completely consistent when disciplining students because of the existence of gender bias in schools, thus leading to ineffective classroom management. In order to explore this, observations were made in five different third and fourth grade classrooms over the course of eight weeks. Disruptive student behavior and the teacher’s response to that behavior were recorded in order to see if there was a difference in the way boys and girls were being disciplined. Data analysis is currently underway. The findings of this study are expected to provide a better understanding as to why classroom discipline continues to be a problem in many schools.

Air Permeability of Damaged Concrete
Heather Coman
Mentor: Dr. Charles Hamilton

Concrete is often used as a tertiary layer of containment for radioactive materials storage. The design codes for these barriers are typically little more sophisticated than those for ordinary concrete shear walls. No quantitative limits are set on the permeability of the walls against radioactive materials leakage. However, there is little research into the permeability of concrete to support such limits, and none of this knowledge has been applied to the current codes. To improve these codes it is necessary to develop a quantitative understanding of the permeability of concrete. The research done in this project is intended to provide some of this knowledge by comparing the permeability of small concrete slabs which are undamaged with those damaged by varying punching shear loads.

Fabrication of Sputtering Targets
Carlos Comparan
Mentors: Dr. Allen Kine, Dr. John LaRue, & Dr. Richard Nelson

The optimization in the design of Microwave Integrated Circuits and Microwave MEMS devices is limited by the design tradeoffs resulting from the limitation in the magnitude of the small inductor values. It is proven that Ferrite metal materials have the necessary microwave properties needed, and recently it has been demonstrated that the sputtering of metal mixtures in a partial oxygen environment can produce very small grain magnetic films, which have the properties necessary for Integrated Circuits and MEMS inductors. However, in the published papers, the sputtering targets are produced by the pasting of metallic pieces on a base metal target. The present project investigates the preparation of the sputtering target by a powder metallurgy approach. A novel thermal press has been designed, analyzed and manufactured. This thermal press can be used for a large number of cycles to produce sputtering targets. The preparation of the sputtering target composed of powders of Co and Zr will be produced using the thermal press. The thermal press works by using the differences in thermal expansion between two Free-cutting Brass plates and six Stainless Steel 17-4PH restraining bolts. The metal powders are mixed mechanically and placed in the recess of the brass plates and pressed until reaching a desired pressure (5 kpsi) and temperature (600 ° F), thereby consolidating the powdered metals into a rigid sputtering target. The thermal press approach is projected to improve repeatability of the sputtering film properties and can also be used for fabricating other sputtering targets for research applications.

Definition of Interaction Partners Among Mammalian Grainyhead-Like Proteins
Manuel Cortes
Mentor: Dr. Bogi Andersen

The Drosophila gene Grainyhead is the founding member of a family of genes encoding developmental transcription factors that are highly conserved from fly to humans. Grainyhead is epidermally expressed and carries out important functions in cuticular formation in the fly embryo. After the recent discovery of a novel mouse Grainyhead-like gene Grainyhead-like epithelial transactivator 1 (GET-1) in our laboratory, the family of Grainyhead-like genes has been extended to six members grouped into two classes based on sequence homology. Because Drosophila Grainyhead may function by forming homodimers and heterodimers with related proteins, we have used the yeast two-hybrid system to define interactions involving GET-1. Thus we proposed that members of the family of Grainyhead-like transcription factors may interact with GET-1 to perform important functions in epithelial tissues of mammals. However, my experiments suggest that GET-1 interacts with itself forming homodimers, but does not form heterodimers with the related CP-2, Nf2d9, mLBP-32 and mLBP-9. Since not all interactions may be detected using the yeast two-hybrid system, another method such as GST pull-down assays and co-immunoprecipitations will be used in the future to confirm the current findings.

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AICD Production Modulated ER Ca2+ Through Upregulation of a Carco-Endoplasmic Reticulum Calcium ATP-ase
Nabil Dagher
Mentor: Dr. Frank LaFerla

Mutations in the presenilin gene(s) have been shown to dramatically exacerbate Alzheimer’s disease (AD) pathology whose major pathological hallmarks include extracellular deposition of amyloid-beta (Aß), intracellular accumulation of tangles, and neuronal death. Moreover, presenilin mutations have also been shown to be involved in intracellular calcium dysregulation. The exact role of calcium in the initiation and propagation of the disease, however, has yet to be elucidated. In this study, we systematically applied pharmacological and genetic approaches to manipulate intracellular calcium concentrations and monitored the effects on Aß levels. The data indicate that inhibiting the sarco-endoplasmic reticulum calcium ATP-ase-2b isoform (SERCA-2b) leads to a decrease in Aß production. Conversely, overexpression of SERCA-2b leads to an increase in Aß production. We also show that overexpression of the APP intracellular domain (AICD) causes upregulation of the SERCA-2b pump. Considering that the presenilin 1 gene codes for a component, which is involved in the production of the AICD fragment, we propose a potential feed-forward mechanism: ß-secretase mediated cleavage of APP allows for the AICD-mediated transcriptional upregulation of SERCA-2b. SERCA-2b, in turn, can modulate Aß levels and, as a consequence, contribute to AD pathology.

Twelve-Hour Preservation With PEG-Hemoglobin
Christine Dang
Mentor: Dr. Jeffrey Milliken

The current clinically accepted method for donor heart preservation, cold ischemic storage, limits the time for safe tissue preservation to four hours. This limitation restricts the geographic distance between the donor and recipient and fails to utilize the available donor pool nationwide. Development of a method that would allow longer preservation times would provide increased access to the available donor pool. Our laboratory has developed a method that provides preservation of the extirpated rabbit heart for up to 24 hours followed by return of cardiac function in vitro using a 20 ºC normokalemic, hypocalcemic, oxygenated bovine polyethylene glycol hemoglobin solution [PEG-Hb]. We hypothesized that donor hearts that undergo a 12-hour period of perfusion-preservation period using modified PEG-Hb will regain cardiac function after heterotopic transplant. Extirpated donor hearts from ten New Zealand white rabbits were harvested and underwent a 12-hour period of perfusion-preservation using modified PEG-Hb, followed by a heterotopic transplantation. An assessment of cardiac function in vivo (heart rate, left ventricular developed pressure, maximum rate of contraction (peak +dP/dt) and maximum rate of relaxation (peak – dP/dt)) was performed during a two hour period following transplant. Cardiac function returned in all ten hearts. Extended preservation of adult sized hearts followed by assessment of in vitro and/or in vivo cardiac function deserves study.

Keatsian Identity
Brandon Davis
Mentor: Dr. Sara Guyer

Through the course of his literary career, John Keats not only left the world with an astounding portfolio of poetry but also invaluable insights into the workings of a poetic mind. In his prose prefaces to several poems but more often in his letters Keats left behind a blueprint for how to read his work. Keats creates a paradox though; this is due to the fact that the manner in which he creates his blueprints depends greatly on the idea of identity. Keats treats identity in three major ways in both his poetry and his letters: identity of characters in his narratives, and two different types of authorial identity (poetic and theoretical). The paradox comes for the fact that Keats’ idea of identity deals mostly with "non-identity" (non-identity is a contrived term for this argument). That is to say that basically identity does not exist except as a fiction and that identity changes to fit situations, just as Keats’ "camelion poet" changes identity in the creation of poetry. This idea of "non-identity" surfaces through the combined study of each of these types of identity, approached by Keats. Keats does not deal with the idea of "non-identity" as it relates to culture directly. Within his letters and poems there nonetheless exist consequences for both culture and approaches to reading literature in relation to "non-identity" of narrative characters and authors. Temporality also comes into play after the establishment of "non-identity" in characters and authors in that ultimately this "non-identity" causes all characters and stories to become contemporary.

Contributions of Auditory and Visual Cues to Lipreading Performance in Normal Hearing and Cochlear Implant Listeners
Sheetal Desai
Mentor: Dr. Ginger Stickney

The cochlear implant (CI) is a medical device that electrically stimulates the auditory nerve to restore hearing to people with severe hearing loss. It is known that both auditory and visual cortices are involved in speech comprehension. CI users’ prior dependence on lipreading may cause them to rely more heavily on visual images to understand speech. One means of evaluating a listener’s bias for auditory or visual cues is the McGurk Effect, in which mismatched auditory and visual cues can produce the perception of a novel sound (e.g., if a speaker mouths "ga" but says "ba," a normal hearing (NH) adult would perceive "da"). In this experiment, we evaluate the McGurk Effect by creating a continuum of speech sounds in which the formant transitions of the consonants /b/, /d/ and /g/ were changed in incremental steps. Moreover, NH listeners categorize speech sounds that vary in pronunciation instead of perceiving them as distinct sounds. Because CI listeners receive degraded auditory information through their implant, they may confuse speech sounds that are similar in pronunciation (e.g., /d/ and /g/) and show less defined categories than NH listeners. Furthermore, more proficient CI users would demonstrate confusion similar to NH listeners when presented with the McGurk Effect. Pilot studies have shown that NH listeners do show a categorical perception trend. By comparing CI listeners to that of NH listeners on audio-visual tasks, it will be possible to delineate which cues CI listeners employ for speech comprehension in order to design relevant rehabilitative speech strategies.

Spectroscopic Investigation of Nonlinear Resonance Induced Plasma Heating
Benjamin Dilday
Mentor: Dr. Liu Chen

It has been shown recently that, contrary to conventional analysis, significant perpendicular heating of a magnetized plasma can be effected by waves with frequencies well below the ion cyclotron frequency. It was preliminarily shown that a perturbation consisting of a spectrum of modes results in an increased heating efficiency as compared with a single mode. Motivated by this result, we have undertaken a detailed study of the dependence of the heating efficiency, due to a spectrum of obliquely propagating Alfven waves, on the wave energy density, spectral indices, and perpendicular wave scales. I have simulated the interaction of an initially cold plasma with the low and high frequency halves (with respect to the cyclotron frequency) of a given wave spectrum, acting both independently and in unison. It is found that a spectrum including only modes below the cyclotron frequency could indeed impart significant heating, while the higher frequency modes remain most efficient. In addition, it is found that the perpendicular wave scale, which allows for the nonlinear cyclotron resonance, also limits the attainable particle perpendicular energy, due to the finite Larmor-radius averaging effect. This work serves as a promising model for heating of the solar corona as it does not rely on the primary cyclotron resonance. Both analytical and numerical detailed results will be presented. This project was supported in part by US DOE, NSF, and UCI UROP grants.

Characterization of the Defense Mechanism Utilized by Antibodies Against Cytomegalovirus
Vinodinee Dissanayake
Mentor: Dr. Donald Forthal

Cytomegalovirus (CMV) is a herpes virus that causes opportunistic infection in young children and immunocompromised individuals, such as AIDS patients. As reported by the National Center for Infectious Diseases, CMV infects 50-85% of adults in the United States by the age of 40. The major area of concern regarding CMV is its infection of newborns and patients with weakened immune systems. One out of ten babies born with CMV suffers severe problems including mental retardation, head abnormalities, and visual and auditory deficits. The development of a CMV vaccine would help prevent contraction of this devastating disease among our future generations. In order to better understand the role of antibodies in the body’s defense against CMV, and to isolate epitopes to create a vaccine against CMV, human peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC) and CMV-specific antibody were incubated with CMV-infected target cells and target cell death was measured. This was accomplished by labeling effector cells with the membrane dye 3,3'-dioctadecyloxacarbocyanine perchlorate (DIOC18), in order to distinguish them from the target cells, and utilizing propidium iodide dye (PI) to determine levels of target cell death. The addition of antibody allowed for a comparison of cytotoxicity resulting from effector cell function alone or resulting from antibody-dependent cellular cytotoxicity.

Sleepiness Affects Coping with Depressed Mood
Natalia Dmitrieva
Mentor: Dr. Susan Charles

Flexible thinking is necessary for effective problem solving. In contrast, rumination is an inflexible cognitive style that some people use in response to depressing events. Rumination often entails self-elected isolation, where people focus predominately on their negative mood state, thus prohibiting more flexible thinking and prolonging the depressed mood. Ruminators have difficulties appropriately adapting their thinking to changes in environment. Researchers find that sleepiness also inhibits flexible thinking. Insufficient sleep the night before an encounter with a depressing event may promote a ruminative response by impairing flexible thinking. For this study, participants (n=89) reported their level of sleepiness, were induced with a sad mood, and recalled a memory into a tape recorder. Data analysis of these taped responses is currently being conducted. Findings will be examined in light of a possible relationship between sleepiness and rumination.

Sol-gel Synthesis of ZrO2 Thin Films to Replace SiO2 in Integrated Circuits
Anh-Tuan Do
Mentor: Dr. Martha Mecartney

Sol-gel ceramic processing was used to fabricate ZrO2 thin films for a gate dielectric to replace SiO2 for microelectronic applications. The sol-gel method involved the making of a sol or solution containing an alkoxide, zirconium propoxide, then hydrolyzing the sol to form a polymerized network (a gel). Heat treatments pyrolyzed and crystallized the gel to form a ZrO2 ceramic. ZrO2 films were applied by spin coating multiple layers of the sol onto Si substrates at 2000 rpm for 30 sec. The first layer was dried at 300 ° C and then fired at 400 ° C or 500 ° C for 30 min. Each subsequent layer was dried at 300 ºC. After 5 layers, the entire film was fired at 400 ° C or 500 ° C for 30 min. Scanning electron microscopy (SEM) revealed extensive crackings for films of more than 2 layers. Cracking was a result of a large difference in thermal expansion coefficient between Si (2.5×10-6/ºC) and ZrO2 (10×10-6/° C), and built up residual tensile stress due to volume changes. The phase composition of the ZrO2 thin films was examined by utilizing x-ray diffraction (XRD). ZrO2 annealed at low temperature (400-500 ° C) exhibited the tetragonal zirconia phase, which was stabilized by residual carbon due to incomplete pyrolysis. However, this metastable phase would slowly dissolve as annealing temperature increased (>550 ° C), yielding to the formation of the thermodynamically stable monoclinic zirconia phase.

The Role of c-FLIP in Regulating T Cell Homeostasis
Oanhcatherine Do
Mentor: Dr. Craig Walsh

Apoptosis (cell death) is central to cellular homeostasis. In T-cells, apoptosis works through negative selection and Activation Induced Cell Death (AICD). To study the effects of homeostasis on the immune system, I am tracking the regulation of FLIP, a signaling component of the Tumor Necrosis Factor-Receptor (TNF) family. Cellular FLIP has two identified splice variants or isoforms: long and short. C-FLIPL contains caspase-like regions making it linked to apoptosis because caspase-8 is a cysteine protease necessary for apoptosis. Caspase-8 works through the death-inducing signaling complex (DISC) in Fas-induced apoptosis by interacting with the death effector domain (DED) of FADD causing self-cleavage and a cleavage cascade of subsequent downstream effector caspases resulting in apoptosis. Thus, c-FLIPL may block apoptosis by interfering with caspase-8 binding to FADD because c-FLIPL itself does not contain the cysteine residues needed for catalytic activity. FLIP is considered important for the prevention of AICD, but its role at present remains unclear. Conflicting data suggests that although c-FLIPS and c-FLIPL are recruited to the DISC, this does not prevent caspase interaction. Our interest is to discern how potential differences in the activities of the FLIP isoforms regulate apoptosis and proliferation of T-cells. These studies are aimed at developing a clearer understanding of the molecular pathways that regulate immunal homeostasis and have broad implications to human disease, including cancer, AIDS and auto-immune diseases.

African-American Political Power in Los Angeles
Stephanie Doan
Mentor: Dr. Katherine Tate

The status of minorities in the governing coalition in Los Angeles has not been certain for the past ten years. After more than two decades with a Black liberal mayor leading the governing coalition of the city, the voters have elected more conservative White candidates in every mayoral election since. The most recent mayoral election, and its aftermath, especially brings the political status of African-Americans in Los Angeles into question, in addition to the electoral future of this group as the Latino population grows exponentially. This study builds upon the book Politics in Black and White by Rafael Sonenshein (1992). This study utilizes analyses of election returns in the three mayoral elections since the publication of Sonenshein’s book and interviews conducted by the author with political leaders in Los Angeles. The results of this study will address the current political status of African-Americans in Los Angeles, the future of bi-racial coalitions for African-Americans, and the prospects for their political future.

Patents and the Fiber Optic Industry: How do They Affect the Economy?
Brieanna Dolmage
Mentor: Dr. Roger McWilliams

Patents are granted for the purpose of encouraging invention; however, securing exclusive rights of inventions to the inventor for twenty years can do more than encourage invention, it can prevent others from entering the market. In fields such as the fiber optics industry, inventions can have many applications unseen by the inventor and the right to use the invention must be bought. The result is few firms competing in the market, an oligopoly. The effect of this oligopoly on the economy is currently being studied.

Stereotype Threat
Stephanie Domzalski
Mentor: Dr. Geoffrey Iverson

The stereotype threat theory (Steele 1992, 1997) examines the underperformance of women in mathematical domains and minorities in academic domains and attempts to explain these trends as being due to situational anxiety. Research indicates that the performance differential between genders and ethnicities can be best understood in terms of stereotype threat activation rather than biological determinants. The anxiety a stereotyped individual feels when confronted with an academic task is compounded by a societal expectation of failure. However, not much research currently exists on the mediating effects of personal belief in the stereotype. The goal of this study was to examine whether anxiety was correlated with a stronger belief in the stereotype among college-aged participants. Individuals from stigmatized groups demonstrated a significantly greater likelihood to experience higher anxiety levels if they believed the negative stereotype and that higher anxiety level correlated with lower test scores. These results provide general support for Steele’s stereotype threat hypothesis.

Floral Morphology and Genetics of Females in Schiedea menziesii
Loan Duong
Mentors: Dr. Ann Sakai & Dr. Stephen Weller

Schiedea menziesii is found in dry habitats of the West Maui Mountain. Most Schiedea that are found in dry habitats have dimorphic breeding systems, but S. menziesii apparently has a hermaphroditic breeding system. In S. menziesii only hermaphrodites are found in the field; however, occasional females are found among progeny raised in the greenhouse from field-collected seed. In order to determine whether the male sterility gene in S. menziesii is allelic to the male sterility gene found in gynodioecious S. salicaria, females of S. menziesii were crossed to hermaphrodites of S. salicaria that were heterozygous at the sex-determining locus. Preliminary segregations show a complex pattern indicating that there are two genes for male sterility in S. menziesii. The floral morphology and fitness of females of S. menziesii were compared to those of hermaphrodites to determine if females are favored by shifts in resource allocation as well as the occurrence of high inbreeding depression and high selfing rate demonstrated in earlier studies. Comparisons of seed production show that the females are unlikely to be favored in the field by shifts in resource allocation.

Some Schizophrenics Have Bad Taste (For Monosodium Glutamate)
Kwitka Durana
Mentor: Dr. Edward DeMet

The intent of this study is to examine the etiology of schizophrenia in relation to sensitivity to monosodium glutamate (MSG). Although the causes underlying schizophrenia remain unclear, theories have suggested the involvement of glutamate receptors in the brain. Two different types of glutamate receptors, excitatory and inhibitory, exist. A possible involvement of excitatory receptors remains controversial and inhibitory receptors have not been studied. While it is not yet possible to study such receptors directly in the brain, it is now known that they are involved in an ability to taste MSG. This study uses a novel taste test paradigm to establish taste thresholds and, thus, glutamate receptor sensitivity. Schizophrenics and normal controls were asked to distinguish between cups containing water and cups containing MSG solutions. Solution concentration was increased until subjects could identify just noticeable differences. Thirteen patients and eight controls have been examined. Mean patient thresholds (20.41 + 29.59 mM) were higher than those of controls (4.65 + 3.09 mM), although this was due to four patients with very high thresholds (>35.00 mM). These results suggest the possibility that excitatory ionotropic receptor function may be diminished in a subset of schizophrenics.

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How to do an Independent Production
Janelle Eagle
Mentor: Dr. Keith Fowler

I am interested in how the arts can be used as a tool to educate the greater public about important social issues. I feel that our society will learn better if they are given news and ideas in non-traditional methods such as theatrical performance. Eventually, I hope to open my own production company that does exactly that. In order to prepare for this career path, I needed to clarify the roles of a producer and director within the independent production realm. This is a job that can only be learned by doing. Under the guidance of Dr. Keith Fowler, the Center for Women and Men, Health Education, the LGBTRC, and UROP, I completed a project entitled, "How to do an Independent Production." This project consisted of a benefit production of Eve Ensler’s "The Vagina Monologues." We held three shows that took place on February 14 and 15, 2003. All proceeds (which totaled over $8,200) went to various beneficiaries working to stop violence against women and girls. The show educated the audience about femininity, violence, body image, and various other important social topics. Many peers and mentors were inspired to do their own independent productions. For their future reference, I completed a manuscript entitled, "How to do an Independent Production." This is a hands-on guideline to the steps and notes I took and learned during the process. With this research and manuscript, I hope to encourage artists to take their education and ideas into their own hands.

The Intracellular Domain of the Interferon Receptor (IFNaR2) Represses Gene Transcription via Stat2
Amirpasha Ehsan
Mentor: Dr. John Krolewski

Regulated intramembrane proteolysis (RIP) of receptor intracellular domains is a simple and evolutionarily conserved signaling mechanism used by diverse receptors. We now demonstrate that a cytokine receptor family member can also signal via RIP. Specifically, FNaR2, a subunit of the interferon alpha receptor, can be proteolytically cleaved in a pattern characteristic of RIP substrates and can translocate to the nucleus. We fused the intracellular domain of IFNaR2 to the Gal4 DNA binding domain and found that, in contrast to previously described RIP-generated proteins, this intracellular domain mediates transcriptional repression in a histone deacetylase-dependent manner. Furthermore, the transcriptional affects require Stat2, which binds IFNaR2 constitutively.

Jews of Medieval Spanish Heritage
Pamina Elgueta
Mentor: Dr. Michelle Hamilton

When the Jews left Spain because of religious persecution in 1492, they took with them their Spanish traditions, language and heritage. Throughout the Inquisition, these Spanish Jews, known as the Sephardi, spread throughout Europe, Africa, North and South America, Asia, and the Middle East. Their commitment to their heritage was steadfast. They preserved the medieval Spanish language, Ladino, setting them apart from whatever community they joined. Today, even in Los Angeles and Orange County, there is a small Sephardic community that communicates in Ladino and retains the values and folktales of its medieval ancestors. But, most likely because of efforts to assimilate, Ladino as a spoken language is becoming rare. The objective of my research project has been to record the oral histories and folk tales of local Sephardic Jews. Through interviews with members of the Sephardic community, I am discovering the degree that Ladino has been preserved—whether it is now a modern version of a medieval culture and language or simply a fractured remembrance of the past. Since much of the younger generations cannot speak Ladino fluently, it is even more pressing that we record what the older generations know. They are our link to not only the Jewish past but to a medieval past in which Jews, Muslims and Christians lived together in harmony. In light of today’s political and religious turmoil, this may provide a great lesson in coexistence.

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Point-Based Multiresolution Splatting for Interactive Volume Visualization
Matthew Fawcett
Mentor: Dr. Renato Pajarola

Interactive visualization of large volume data sets is an increasingly important research problem with applications in a variety of domains such as scientific visualization, medical imaging, physical simulations, and sciences such as oceanography, meteorology and chemistry. Of particular interest are scientific visualization applications in the areas of material simulations, computational fluid dynamics, blast simulations, and atmospheric and oceanographic visualizations. This research project proposes to develop a hardware accelerated volume rendering method using a multiresolution point splatting approach. The volume data will be organized in a hierarchical multiresolution data structure that provides adaptive access and rendering at multiple levels-of-detail (LODs). A user-defined transfer function assigns color and opacity values to the scalar field. Volume rendering is performed by projecting the sample kernels onto the image plane and blending the color and opacity values, including depth and visibility attenuation. Hardware acceleration will be achieved by planar integration of the volumetric blending kernel and polygonal rendering of samples using alpha texturing.

The Effects on Capillary Tube Formation in the Presence of Fibroblasts
Adrian Fernandez
Mentor: Dr. Jay Calvert

A major limiting factor in the development of three-dimensional synthetic tissues is the development of a vascular network within the new tissue. Without blood supply to nourish the tissue, the size and scope of tissues able to be created is limited. Understanding capillary growth is necessary in developing vascular networks for three-dimensional synthetic tissues. This study investigates the hypothesis that growth of capillary tubes is affected by the resistance of diffusion caused by an increase in the overall depth of the tissue matrix and an increase in the distance between the fibroblast and the beads. Human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVECSs) removed from freshly isolated umbilical cords were subcultured once then seeded onto 150-mm diameter cytodex beads. The beads were embedded at the bottom of a tissue matrix and a layer of fibroblasts was placed in the fibrinogen, separating the beads and Endothelial Growth Media-2 (EGM-2). The overall depth of the tissue and distance between the fibroblast and the beads were varied. Images of the beads were taken after six days and the growth of the capillary tubes formed was quantified. The data so far indicate that when the fibroblasts are in close proximity to the beads the HUVECs primarily form capillary tubes. Moreover, as the depth of the acellular tissue increases, tube formation/branching/maintenance does not readily occur. Capillary tube formation is greatly affected by the overall depth of the tissue and the distance between the fibroblast and the beads, which supports our hypothesis.

Structural Analysis of Calretinin
Julie Fernandez
Mentors: Dr. Brian Edmonds & Dr. Hartmut Luecke

Calretinin is a calcium-binding protein found in the cytosol of sensory neurons. The function of calretinin is to quickly bind calcium upon entering the cell through voltage-gated calcium channels. Calretinin is an important regulator of calcium signaling in sensory neurons adapted to detect and encode stimuli with high temporal fidelity, yet there are currently no published structures at high or low resolution of any proposed neuronal calcium buffer. Atomic resolution structures of calretinin in both calcium-free and calcium-bound forms are likely to yield information of its functional role. After several modifications of the protein expression protocol, calretinin was purified using Fast Performance Liquid Chromatography (FPLC) and size exclusion techniques. Calretinin was obtained at high quantities, allowing for the screening of several crystallization solutions to determine if any of the solutions would promote crystal growth. Currently, we are making protocol modifications to improve crystal growth conditions. We are considering parameters such as protein concentration and protein proteolysis to determine if a shorter length version of the protein will promote crystal growth. Once a single calretinin crystal or crystals are obtained, they will be tested using standard methods in x-ray crystallography. If any of these crystals diffract, a complete data set will be collected to solve the molecular structure of calretinin.

High Dietary Manganese Intake Suppresses Brain Dopamine Levels in Iron-Deficient Neonatal Rats
Reyna Ferretti
Mentor: Dr. Aleksandra Chicz-DeMet

Recent animal studies have found that high dietary manganese (Mn) is associated with suppressed striatal brain dopamine (DA) levels. This in turn has led to the hypothesis that attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), characterized by DAergic dysfunction, may be affected by the high dietary intake of Mn via soy-based infant formula. This is of particular interest with regard to anemic infants, who may be more susceptible to greater Mn absorption, since both iron (Fe) and Mn are absorbed via the same transport system. The aim of the present study was to examine the effects of dietary Mn supplementation on iron deficiency. Non-anemic and anemic rat pups were randomly assigned into three Mn diet groups: 0, 250, and 500 ƒÝg/day, administered orally day 1 to day 20 postnatally. At day 65, the animals were sacrificed, and brain tissue samples were collected and frozen for assay. Striatal DA levels were 52% higher in the anemic group without Mn, compared to the non-anemic group. While DA levels increased with Mn doses in the non-anemic group, Mn supplementation decreased DA levels in the anemic group. The inverse relationship between DA levels and Mn doses when comparing the two groups suggests that iron-deficient neonatal rats were more susceptible to Mn absorption.

Neural Processing of Pitch and Rhythm: An FMRI Study
Paul Fillmore
Mentor: Dr. Gregory Hickok

Current neuroimaging technologies (PET, fMRI, etc.) have allowed scientists a previously impossible glimpse into the online function of the human brain. It is these very technologies that we have put to use to study the neural processing of two of the most vital factors in music: pitch and rhythm. Due to the functional interdependence of pitch and rhythm upon each other, previous research has largely looked at small discriminations, such as noticing if a note is off key or not, or whether two rhythms are the same or different. We were a bit more ambitious in that we sought to isolate the areas devoted to each factor as a whole by removing all variation in one at a time. For example, a base melody would first be composed, and then two experimental manipulations performed on it. The first manipulation was to remove all pitch variation (use the same note) and keep rhythm constant; the second was to remove all rhythmic variation (use all quarter notes with no rests) and keep pitch constant. All three conditions (no pitch, no rhythm, and control) were listened to by each participant while his or her brain was being scanned via functional magnetic resonance imaging. Images were compared to see what areas of the brain were activated solely by pitch or rhythm. Individual data analyses are currently underway, and have shown differing activation patterns for each participant. Group analyses will be performed when data collection is complete, to see what patterns emerge across individuals.

Characterization of the Immunological and Neuropathological Responses in a Clinically Relevant Model of Myelin Tolerizing DNA Vaccination in the Treatment of Spinal Cord Injury
Brian Fitzgerald
Mentor: Dr. Hans Keirstead

Spinal cord injury (SCI) is one of the most debilitating injuries that modern science has yet to cure. An individual suffering from an SCI is often left paralyzed and in many cases without bladder function. One of the most serious problems to consider when discussing spinal cord injury is secondary inflammation. The brain-blood barrier ensures that the cerebral-spinal fluid and various proteins of the central nervous system do not come in direct contact with the blood. During SCI, this barrier is compromised, resulting in an autoimmune disorder in which the immune system essentially attacks its own nerve cells in the central nervous system. This is due to the CD4 and CD8 cells not recognizing the myelin as "self," and thus treating it like a foreign intruder. Myelin serves to insulate the axons to better direct action potentials. In essence, SCI is made worse by one’s own immune system degrading neuroconnections. The researchers at the Roman-Reed Core Facility of the Reeve-Irvine Research Center at UCI, along with Dr. Steinman of Stanford University, are conducting this experiment in the hope of developing a "myelin-tolerizing" DNA vaccination, which would be administered pre-injury as a preventative measure, and would hopefully tolerize the immune cell to myelin. This would not "cure" SCI but would greatly reduce its severity by mitigating secondary inflammation. The experimental model we used was Black-6 mice. We have conducted this experiment twice now, due to an inconclusive strain of mice. While the data isn’t complete (immunohistochemisty staining is not finished), preliminary behavioral analysis (kinematics and BBB) of the mice is. Thus far, results appear to be inconclusive.

Brown Berets: A Comparative Study
Barlow Flores
Mentors: Dr. Samuel Gilmore & Dr. David Meyer

The project will investigate the Brown Berets, a Chicano political organization that was involved in achieving social change for Chicano/Latinos during the early 1970s. Specifically, the research will explore the rise and fall of the organization and the various factors that contributed to their development and demise. Brown Beret alumni will be tracked down and interviewed. The methods and tactics implemented by the Berets as a means of achieving their objectives will be chronicled and analyzed as to their effectiveness. In addition, an analysis of how other organizations within the movement mirrored or rather institutionalized the objectives and issues salient to the Brown Berets will be a focus of this project. The research will be of emergent design, qualitative and quantitative. Specifically, 10-15 interviews of Brown Beret alumni will be conducted. Interviews will be recorded and data will be transcribed. Furthermore, the qualitative data will be coded and analyzed by selecting the common themes and patterns. Secondary data analysis of a similar group of Chicano men from the General Social Survey will be statistically compared to the Brown Beret alumni. At present, the fight for social justice for Chicano/Latinos in California is still a very important issue just as it was during the 1970s. This research project may provide information as to how the movement of the 1970s and the efforts of an organization such as the Brown Berets have an influence on current efforts for social justice within the Chicano/Latino community.

One Dimensional Quantum Wave Packet Interacting with a Potential
John Fowkes
Mentor: Dr. Steven White

A familiar problem in quantum mechanics is the interaction of a wave packet with a potential. I will develop a Mathematica program to study this problem in one dimension. The incident wave packet can be treated mathematically to be a Gaussian wave packet, having both real and complex parts. The wave will travel toward a given potential. A portion of the wave will be transmitted and a portion of the wave will be reflected. Starting at t = 0, the program will compute the position and shape of the wave packet incrementally by solving the Schrodinger equation. The results will be presented in an animated form, showing the properties of the wave packet. Mathematica is a software package that allows the user to program and compute mathematical expressions and has commands available that allow the user to plot results of various calculations. After depicting a general result in some detail, I will then show results for interactions with different potentials and discuss the effects of changing the potential. For example, the height and width of the potential can be changed, and this will affect the percentage of the wave that is transmitted.

International Migration and its Socio-Economic Impact in the United Kingdom
Monica Franco
Mentor: Dr. Bojan Petrovic

The movement across international borders has increased radically over the past decades. Currently, migration takes different shapes, forms and names depending on country of origin. The purpose of this study is to examine the roots, causes and reasons why the United Kingdom is a country of migration destination. This thesis focuses on refugees, asylum-seekers, and economic migrants from Afghanistan, Iraq, Somalia, and Sri Lanka. This study includes their similarities and differences of their geo-political and economic patterns of migration flows. It also shows the recent changes of asylum policy in the European Union and its controversies. In addition this study examines the positive and negative socio-economic aspects that migrants bring into England. The thesis analyzes solutions that address both political and humanitarian sides of the dilemma based on the findings.

The Role of GSK-3ß on Hyperphosphorylated Tau due to Lysosomal Dysfunction by Cathepsin Inhibitor
Lawrence Fu
Mentor: Dr. Xiaoning Bi

Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is a neurodegenerative disease characterized by dysfunction of lysosomes, neurofibrillary tangles, and senile plaques. The main components of neurofibrillary tangles hyperphosphorylation are hyperphosphorylated Tau proteins and fragments. Experimental evidence has provided support that Glycogen Synthase Kinase-3ß (GSK-3ß), a Serine/Threonine kinase, plays a key role in the hyperphosphorylation of Tau protein and neuronal apoptosis. Recent work has shown that N-CBZ-L-phenylalanyl-L-alanine-diazomethylketone (ZPAD), a selective inhibitor of cathepsins B and L, can induce neurofibrillary tangles (NFT) in cultured hippocampal slices. Evidence of NFT-like structures and lysosomes increase is prominent in the CA1 region of the hippocampus. In this study, we attempt to quantify relationships between GSK-3ß and hyperphosphorylated Tau protein induced by ZPAD treatments. Using immunoblotting and immunocytochemistry, we determine that ZPAD provides an inhibitory effect of phosphorylated GSK-3ß, leading to a decrease in the phosphorylation of Tau protein. Additional studies also led to the conclusion that the NFT formation is possibly regulated within the Akt/PI3 pathway. Futher research can identify whether or not this pathway is the sole contributor to Tau hyperphosphorylation.

Stabilizing Selection on Flowering Time by Soil Moisture in Brassica rapa
Miki Fujikawa
Mentor: Dr. Arthur Weis

Wild Mustard (Brassica rapa) is a winter annual plant with a broad geographic distribution. A cline in B. rapa flowering time exists along the San Diego Creek starting at the Newport Back Bay stretching 4 km inland, with plants located closer to the Back Bay flowering earlier. It has been suggested that the reason for the difference in flowering time is that soil located further inland remains moist for a longer part of the growing season allowing the inland plants to take more time to grow vegetative bodies and produce more seeds. In contrast, plants that flower late at the dry site have too little time to mature seeds before the summer drought. This research tests the hypothesis that seasonal changes in soil moisture levels cause stabilizing selection on populations of B. rapa at two different locations, the Newport Back Bay and the UCI Arboretum. This type of selection narrows the phenotypic range of the population and gives intermediate plants increased fitness. Plants were monitored for flowering time, size, and reproductive success, which was determined by seed mass. By plotting reproductive success over time, Least-Squares quadratic regression will be used to determine if stabilizing selection is occurring, and how strong its effects are. Examining local selective pressures allows us to understand how widespread species differentiate into locally adapted populations.

Frame Disputes within the Animal Rights Movement
Lisa Fulton
Mentor: Dr. Claire Kim

The primary research question is to answer how the framing efforts of three groups within the Animal Rights Movement differ in their anti-fur and anti-experimentation campaigns, and how these frame disputes affect the campaign and the movement. The Animal Rights Movement is an internally diverse movement that has not been largely studied in academia. Within the Animal Rights Movement there exists a wide spectrum of groups; however, for purposes of examining frame disputes within this movement, three groups have been chosen representing a cross-section of the entire movement: the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS), the People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA), and the Animal Liberation Front (ALF). By "framing" an issue, a group can conceptualize it in a specific light, helping to mobilize those persons with an interest in that specific framed issue. Framing an issue is an integral part of a social movement in that, with a frame constructed properly, a group can recruit new members and lead all members toward a foreseeable and attainable goal. These frame disputes can be detrimental to a particular movement in terms of viability, but also harmful to the entire movement’s goals. This research objective has been accomplished through qualitative methods of research, namely interviewing those involved in framing issues for the three aforementioned groups.

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Tactile and Auditory Perception in Skilled Piano Players
Margie Gabriel
Mentor: Dr. Arthur Grant

Numerous studies have demonstrated that people who are highly practiced in hand and finger skills seem to show improved performance in similar and also unrelated tactile tasks. However, it is unclear whether or not highly trained performance on certain tasks is compensated by decreased performance on other tasks in the same sensory modality. For instance, in a similar study on tactile and auditory perception in temporal lobe epilepsy patients, two of the control subjects, who happened to be highly practiced pianists, performed above normal on a tactile task known as groove width discrimination, but performed significantly below average on another tactile task known as discrimination of grating orientation. Thus, the current investigation builds on this unexpected finding and continues to research on tactile and auditory perception of piano players. Two hypotheses were produced. 1) Skilled pianists will have differential performance compared to normal subjects on two different tactile psychophysical tasks: discrimination of grating orientation and discrimination of grading ridge width. 2) Skilled pianists will perform at a supranormal level on an auditory task called brief tone discrimination. Subjects have been tested on the two stated tactile tasks and an auditory task, and data analyses are currently in progress. If the hypothesis on tactile perception is correct, then the results would suggest that improved skill on some tactile tasks in experienced pianists is balanced by other performance on other tactile tasks.

Ethnic Lines in Gang Related Homicides in Southeast Los Angeles
Nanna Gabrielsen
Mentor: Dr. George Tita

The Southeast Policing Area of the City of Los Angeles is known for its many gangs and gang homicides. The gang related homicides in the area tend to be primarily intraracial. Given the theoretical arguments for why gangs form, this pattern may seem like a contradiction, even in light of the fact that homicide, in general, tends to be overwhelmingly intra-racial. Furthermore, the area has undergone a dramatic demographic change, which has changed the ethnic composition. From being a primarily black community in 1980, it is today 60% Hispanic and 40% black. Several theories are concerned about the consequences of racial succession and they all suggest some kind of interracial violence, when an area is becoming more and more racially and ethnically heterogeneous. However, this only seems to be the situation in this area and the question is why. The current study tries to answer this question by focusing on the motives for the gang related homicides in the area, in relation to the ethnic patterns. Planned analyses will address questions such as what is the primary motive in intraracial gang related homicides and does it differ for inter-racial homicides? Does the race of the gang matter, that is, how do intra-racial homicides differ between African American gangs and Latino gangs? Does the operational definition of a gang homicide matter, that is, does the ethnic pattern changes when the definition of "gang homicide" changes so that it differentiates between gang-motivated events and simple gang member involved homicides?

Eldred v. Ashcroft: A Constitutional Crisis on the Brink of the Digital Revolution
Christina Gagnier
Mentor: Dr. Sherilyn Sellgren

Mr. Ashcroft, Meet Mr. Eldred. The case of Eldred v. Ashcroft originated in the debate over the 1998 Copyright Term Extension Act legislation. This Act extended the terms of existing copyrights an additional 20 years from the date they should have expired. In response to the further extension of copyrights this legislation enacted, Eric Eldred, who runs a website where people can download books whose copyrights have expired, filed a complaint. Many works from the 1930s and 1940s whose copyrights would have expired soon, now have an additional 20-year extension, allowing Hollywood to still capitalize off these works and prohibit them from entering the public domain. Eldred owns a little publishing company that takes works whose copyrights have expired and posts them on the web for all those who use the Internet to enjoy. And, across the country, Eldred has counterparts who engage in the same type of business, ranging from old movie copyrights to rare pieces of literature. On the other side of the country, Lawrence Lessig, a professor at Stanford Law School, was outraged by the act as well. Lessig decided to look for someone to challenge this law, and happened to find Eldred. Since 1998, Eldred and company have been fighting their way through the courts to overturn this law, finally being granted certiorari this last year. The Supreme Court’s decision will have implications on the digital revolution and beyond in regards to intellectual property.

Autonomous Unmanned Solar Aero Vehicle Research Project
Philip Garcia
Mentor: Dr. Kenneth Mease

Autonomous, unmanned, solar aero vehicles are becoming increasingly more capable and important. Applications for drone aircrafts are found in the military for surveillance and even offensive strike. Commercial applications for unmanned planes are fish and pollution monitoring over the ocean. Also, NASA’s solar plane, Helios, is being developed for use as a temporary satellite. The goal of this project is to develop a plane and control system for an autonomous, unmanned, solar airplane. Throughout the project challenges were overcome in areas such as flight dynamics, computer programming, and aerodynamics. This project was a success not only because of the performance of the plane, but also for the valuable experience and education gained. Further development in this project will take place by adding feedback sensors, GPS, and accelerometers to the control system and by adding surveillance equipment.

Effects of Chronic Medroxyprogesterone Treatment on Estrogen Modulation of Endothelial Factors in Rat Cerebral Arteries
Amir Ghaffari
Mentor: Dr. Diana Krause

Recent research suggests that hormone replacement therapy with estrogen (E2) and medroxyprogesterone (MPA) increases the risk of stroke and blood clots in healthy menopausal women. However, we have previously demonstrated that E2 alone upregulates endothelial vasodilator pathways, such as cyclooxygenase-1 (COX-1). This could decrease cerebrovascular risk since COX-1 produces the potent vasodilator, prostacyclin (PGI2). Therefore, we investigated the effects of MPA on COX-1 protein levels and PGI2 production when combined with chronic E2 treatment. Cerebral vessels from ovariectomized (OVX), E2-treated OVX (OE) and MPA-treated OE (OE/MPA) rats were compared. COX-1 protein was measured using Western Blot, and PGI2 production using ELISA. Preliminary results suggest that COX-1 protein is augmented in OE/MPA compared to OVX. Further investigation will explore the effects of MPA on the modulation of endothelial factors in the presence of E2.

Bioactivity of Polymer-Bound BMP-2 on MC3T3-E1 Cells
Nareg Gharibjanian
Mentor: Dr. Jay Calvert

There currently exists a need for a novel biosynthetic bone substitute for the treatment of bony defects resulting from trauma, congenital abnormalities, or cancer resections that would minimize operative morbidity and prove both economic and efficient. This study investigates the potential use of polymer-bound growth factors such as bone morphogenetic protein 2 (BMP-2) in bone tissue engineering to achieve this goal. The study was designed to examine the effects that BMP-2 covalently bound to polymer surfaces has on the osteoblastic phenotypic expression of MC3T3-E1 osteoprogenitor cells. The polymers poly(caprolactone) (PCL) and poly(D,L-lactic-co-glycolic acid) (PLGA) were molded to the bottom of 24-well culture plates. BMP-2 was then annealed to the polymer surfaces in varying concentrations, creating three groups of wells: PLGA, PCL, and uncoated control. MC3T3-E1 cells were then seeded onto the well bottoms, and cultured in Dulbecco’s modified Eagle’s medium with 15% fetal calf serum. After the four days of culture, the medium was assayed for alkaline phosphatase activity using a functional assay, for osteocalcin by ELISA, and for mRNA expression using reverse transcription. PCR Data analysis is currently underway.

Effects of Glutathione (GSH) Depletion on Apoptosis in Human Granulosa Cell Line (COV434) and Primary Cultured Rat Granulosa Cells
Matilde Gonzalez
Mentor: Dr. Ulrike Luderer

Glutathione (GSH) is a tripeptide expressed in mammalian cells, including the ovaries. It plays a detoxifying role as an antioxidant, providing protective mechanisms against oxidative stress that can result in damage to intracellular components, including DNA. Loss of detoxifying mechanisms like GSH can be harmful toward fertility. Follicles in the ovaries are depleted, through the degenerative process of follicular atresia, or apoptotic cell death, resulting from granulosa cell death that serve to nurture the oocyte until release at ovulation. Follicles undergoing apoptosis display characteristic oligonucleosomal DNA fragmentation. The rate limiting enzyme for GSH, glutamate cysteine ligase (GLCL), is highly expressed in granulosa cells of healthy follicles. However, GLCL is not highly observed in cells undergoing apoptosis. Thus, it is hypothesized that depletion of GSH will result in an increase of granulosa cell apoptosis. Using the immortalized human granulosa cell line, COV434 and primary cultured rat granulosa cells from 25-day-old female Sprague-Dawley rats treated with 10 IU’s of pregnant mare serum gonadotropin (PMSG), one can investigate the role GSH depletion has on granulosa cell apoptosis. Preliminary results indicate that GSH concentrations are similar in the two types of cells. Both cultured COV434 and rat granulosa cells will be incubated at different time points in treatment media with or without Buthionine sulfoximine (BSO) in dosages of 100, 250, 500, and 1000 µM. GSH concentrations will be determined by enzymatic assay. Apoptosis will be evaluated using agarose gel electrophoresis and TUNEL staining (terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase mediated dUTP nick-end labeling).

The Underutilization of Social Services in California’s Rural Colonias: A Case Study
Oracio Gonzalez
Mentor: Dr. Caesar Sereseres

Colonias, sometimes referred to as bordertowns, are unplanned settlements forming north of the United States-Mexico border up to one hundred and fifty miles. Colonias are characterized by low educational attainment, substandard housing, inadequate access to clean drinking water and inadequate sewage disposal and plumbing systems. An estimated one and a half million Americans live in approximately 1,800 such Colonias. According to a study by Earl Duncan, an expert on Colonias, there are major communication barriers between the residents of Colonias and the service providers for these communities. Consequently, Colonia residents rarely take advantage of the services made available to them. Duncan attributes this phenomenon to a "culture of mistrust" endemic in many colonias. Residents simply mistrust anyone coming from the "outside," and assume that these agencies are out to hurt their interests and subsequently avoid them. This study attempted to replicate Duncan’s findings in California, a state ignored by his original study. To do this, the researcher conducted a case study of a Colonia located in Southern California called Mecca. Mecca is located approximately thirty-nine miles southeast of Palm Springs. The core research questions were: does the "culture of mistrust" found in Duncan’s work exist in California’s Colonias, and, if so, what are the policy implications? Preliminary findings show that the "culture of mistrust" is present in California’s Colonias. Assuming these findings hold, the researcher will make a list of proposals that, based on the literature, will enable service providers to get around this barrier and effectively provide the community with services.

Assembly and Micro-Scale Manipulation
Ilja Goushcha
Mentor: Dr. Andrei Shkel

Micro mirrors, potentially useful in the telecommunication industry, biomedical instrumentation, and military devices, were designed and fabricated using MEMS technology. The weaknesses, strengths, and actuation difficulties of the manufactured micro mirrors are discussed. The parallel plate electro static actuation mechanisms are described. Calculations predict very high actuation voltages and very stiff suspension spring constant values for the given design, which resulted in a poor performance of the mirror. Based on the gained experience the improved test structures were designed. These structures include pop-up torsion micro mirrors and torsion suspension tests for NASA. The suspension test structures were designed using NASA specifications and will be tested to identify the torsion suspensions with the least compliance. As a side project, the mask design for a new single-layer MEMS manufacturing process was developed and fabricated. Soon an attempt will be made to manufacture these MEMS structures using clean rooms on campus. The characterization and process review will then be given. Plans for future manufacturing runs are given together with new pop up structure applications and future tests. As the miniaturization continues, quantum forces, such as Casmir forces, will become significant in sub micron structures. Measurements of Casmir forces between parallel plates with micro mirror actuation are planned.

Phonological Awareness and Letter Knowledge in Young Children
Aisa Green
Mentor: Dr. Virginia Mann

Children have the ability to form relationships between printed letters and words. Important aspects of achieving this "literacy" include learning letter names, learning letter sounds and phoneme awareness. Although learning letter sounds is an important factor in reading and decoding printed words, prealphabetic children have other strategies available to them, such as learning letter names. In the American literacy culture, learning letter names typically precedes knowing their sound. Children use this knowledge to learn their "sound" and arrive at the phoneme that the letter represents. Phonemes are the smallest units of language and are made up of consonants and vowels to produce a specific sound system of a language. The English language has around forty-three phonemes. Phoneme awareness is built at a young age and the ability to manipulate phonemes of a spoken language is essential in building reading skills. Of interest in this study were letter name knowledge, letter sound knowledge, phoneme awareness, home literacy, and the roles they play in building early literacy skills. Ninety-nine preschool children between the ages of three and six were recruited from the southern California area. Results revealed that learning letter names is critical to learning their sound and both letter name knowledge and letter sound knowledge were significant contributors to identifying words. Home literacy skills (parental teaching) were significant in learning letter names and sounds. Both letter sound knowledge and letter name knowledge were significant contributors to phoneme awareness and in turn phoneme awareness was significantly related to reading ability.

Stabilizing Natural Selection in Populations of Brassica rapa Adapted to Different Wet Season Lengths
Emily Griffin
Mentor: Dr. Arthur Weis

Annual plants commonly allocate their energy toward vegetative growth at the onset of the wet season, followed by a shift to reproductive growth midway into the season. Theory predicts that there is an optimal time for this shift that is determined by wet season length. A plant that follows this optimum time invests sufficient energy into vegetative growth while still allowing enough time in the wet season for maximum reproductive growth. Therefore, a population of plants should experience stabilizing natural selection on flowering time as a function of wet season length. The current study investigates this selection pressure in Brassica rapa, commonly known as wild mustard. Two populations of B. rapa were used in this project. One population has evolved in a habitat with a much shorter wet season. Seeds from the two populations were planted and randomly separated into five wet season treatments. The length of each wet season was controlled with manual watering. It is expected that the population adapted to a short wet season will be most productive in shorter wet season groups while the population adapted to a longer wet season will be most productive in the longer wet season groups. Productivity will be measured by seed production. Seed harvesting is in progress and data analysis will follow. Seed production data will be analyzed by a two-way analysis of variance. Results of this project will help to describe the significance of wet season length in the evolution of B. rapa.

Pattern Transition in the Liquid Crystal N4
Mary Griffith
Mentor: Dr. Michael Dennin

Electroconvection is the study of patterns that form when AC electric fields are applied to nematic liquid crystals. Nematic liquid crystals are long rod-like molecules that tend to align in the same direction. Patterns only form above a certain threshold voltage, and different patterns appear depending upon the applied voltage and frequency. Patterns consist of convection rolls and a corresponding change in the alignment of the molecules. This experiment was designed to study a certain pattern transition in the liquid crystal N4—specifically, the transition between the chaotic and skewed varicose states. The experimental goal is to determine the transition line in voltage-frequency space between these two states. This line has not been measured before for the liquid crystal N4. Images are taken of the liquid crystal in the pattern-forming domain through a microscope. Using Fourier analysis, the line in voltage-frequency space can be determined by studying the change in peaks as a function of frequency and voltage. Data analysis will also address the issue of hysteresis—a path dependent transition—or if there is a mixed state.

Modeling of Inverter, Active Power Filter and Power Factor Corrector
Edoardo Maria Guiotto
Mentor: Dr. Keyue Smedley

In recent years renewable sources of electrical energy have become key elements in everyday life, both because of the shortages of fossil combustibles and because of the pollution that these cause. Such sources are photovoltaic cells and wind mills, among many others. The power produced by these elements needs then to be transformed in a form that can be easily utilized; the easiest way to use electrical energy is through the electrical grid. In order to inject the energy produced by the alternative energy sources into the grid, an inverter is always needed. It converts the DC current, output of a photovoltaic cell or of the rectifier of the AC current from a wind mill, into AC current. We have developed models that describe these elements and that help to study their dynamic response. Nonlinear loads introduce harmful harmonics into the grid, which results in high THD and low power factor, and it may also damage other appliances. Active power filters and power factor correctors are both solutions to this problem. A PFC is a rectifier that processes all the energy transmitted to the load; an APF is an element inserted in parallel with the load that compensates the harmonics generated by the nonlinear load. We have developed models that also describe these elements and help in their understanding and design.

Achievement Level Tracking and its Effects on Teaching Styles and Student Attitudes
Danielle Gust
Mentor: Dr. Michael Scavio

Achievement Level Tracking, or ability grouping, has been part of the public school system since the early twentieth century. Over time the tracking system has changed, but most public high school students are still placed into groups based on ability, usually determined by testing and individual ability assessment. While many studies have focused on the effects and mostly failures of ability grouping, few have focused on the teacher’s role within the grouping environment. This study examines interactions between teachers and students after the students are placed into advanced placement/honors or regular courses for that subject, as well as subsequent reactions of students to the course. These interactions were examined using the banking and problem-posing models developed by Paulo Freire (1970). The data indicate that teachers teach each group of students using differing styles. While these changes are subtle, such as simply asking more and thoughtful questions of the students with supposedly greater abilities, they are readily noticeable and may contribute to differences between the two groups in relation to test scores and academic success (documented in other studies), and student attitudes toward learning (documented in this study).

Beta Sheet Binding Studies 1H-15N-HSQC NMR
Mike Guttman
Mentor: Dr. James Nowick

Non-bonding macromolecular interactions play a huge role in the function of natural regulatory mechanisms within cells. Because of this they are the central theme around drug design. One major form of these non-bonding interactions in proteins is the ß-sheet interaction. In this project we seek a better understanding of this type of ß-sheet binding between proteins using modern biomolecular NMR methods. Our model protein, Streptococcal Protein G domain III, was first expressed and purified. The expression was carried out in a 15N rich media. The purified protein was then used for a 1H-15N-HSQC NMR experiment with various molecules. From this screening of interactions it can be shown that certain peptidomimetic ligands were causing considerable changes to the environment of certain backbone N-H bonds on the protein. More NMR experiments are being carried out to characterize each AA residue on the model protein so specific sites of binding as well as binding affinity can be calculated.

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