Yeshiva University News » Research

Stern College Student Melissa Kramer Examines The Effects of Pharmaceutical Contamination in Summer Internship

Up to 90 percent of a pharmaceutical can leave the body in its active form, meaning that drugs we ingest every day enter the environment via waste water. What happens to those chemicals left behind after waste water processing, and can they have adverse effects on the people and animals that come in contact with that water? Melissa Kramer, a senior at Stern College for Women, spent 10 weeks this summer trying to find out.

melissa kramer

Melissa Kramer

As part of the Research Experience for Undergraduates program at the College of Charleston, which is funded by the National Science Foundation, Kramer studied pharmaceutical contamination in the Grice Marine Laboratory, joining a select group of nine other students from around the country who shared a similar passion for marine biology. Read the rest of this entry…

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YU Undergraduates Participate in Cutting-Edge Summer Scientific Research Program at Einstein

After a challenging year of academic study as a biology major concentrating in molecular and cellular biology at Yeshiva University’s Stern College for Women, Liat Weinstock, of Cedarhurst, New York, isn’t spending her well-deserved summer break at camp or on a beach. Instead, she’s working with Dr. Rebecca Madan’s pediatric infectious diseases team on a research study examining the effects of certain drug-resistant bacteria on transplant patients after their operations.

2014 Roth Scholars

From left: Natan Tracer, Liat Weinstock, Shira Kaye, Hadassa Holzapfel, Adi Cohen, Esther Kazlow, Jacqueline Benayoun, Bracha Robinson and Tamar Ariella Lunzer

“If we’re able to uncover some new information about how our immune system works and recovers, we can then change how we practice medicine to better treat patients with diseases,” said Weinstock. “My responsibilities here have been especially interesting to me because they almost feel like detective work—I find clues in patients’ charts that lead me to the correct labs and test results to determine whether a patient will fit our study or not. Putting together all the clues and coming up with an answer is an exciting ‘Eureka!’ moment.”

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Yeshiva College Senior Mark Weingarten is Researching Bioethics at the Hastings Center
Mark Weingarten, student

Mark Weingarten, a senior at Yeshiva University, was selected to conduct research as part of the Emily Murray Fellowship at the Hastings Center for Bioethics in Hastings, New York this summer.

The three-week program began at the end of May and is open to undergraduates who are preparing a senior thesis in bioethics. Weingarten’s research will focus on two projects that integrate Torah, biomedical science and law. One will explore the ethical considerations that arise from the publication of irreproducible or seemingly fraudulent scientific data, in addition to developing systems approaches to enhance research integrity. The other will examine ethical issues with respect to animals, particularly regarding the controversy over the humane killing of animals for food, and the interplay between religion, history, law and ethics in determining policy.

“I hope to use this research to investigate the broader questions that underlie many elements of the biomedical field in general, and the way in which legal and religious traditions engage advancements in science and technology,” said Weingarten, who is majoring in history at Yeshiva College and also pursuing semicha (rabbinic ordination) at YU-affiliated Rabbi Isaac Elchanan Theological Seminary. “I hope that this study will further my ability to synthesize the knowledge and sensitivities that I have gleaned from my rabbinical studies and biological research to address personal and societal ethical scientific dilemmas.” Read the rest of this entry…

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Kayla Applebaum, Molecular Biology Major, Receives Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship

Kayla Applebaum, a junior at Stern College for Women, has been awarded the Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship, a highly competitive grant that supports undergraduates who intend to pursue careers in science, math or engineering.

Kayla Applebaum, Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship Award WinnerOnly 271 college sophomores and juniors across the country are selected for the scholarship, which covers the cost of tuition, fees, books and room and board up to a maximum of $7,500 per year. Applebaum, a molecular biology major, will use her scholarship to continue her study of the targeting molecular pathways of breast cancer in hands-on research with Dr. Marina Holz, associate professor of biology at Stern College, who she has worked with for the last three years.

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Stern College Biology Professors Alyssa Schuck and Jeffrey Weisburg Engage Students in Novel Cancer Research

What’s in an apple? Maybe, just maybe, the secret to kicking cancer.

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Dr. Jeffrey Weisburg and Dr. Alyssa Schuck

According to research by Dr. Alyssa Schuck and Dr. Jeffrey Weisburg, Doris Kukin Chair in Molecular Biology—both clinical assistant professors of biology at Stern College for Women, apples, along with cranberry juice, pomegranates, and green and black tea, contain common cancer-fighting compounds: nutraceutical polyphenols. Found in natural foods and plants, these polyphenolic extracts were proven by Weisburg’s and Schuck’s studies to be selectively toxic to cancer cells, leaving normal cells unaffected.

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Researchers to Study Diabetes Self-Management and Behavioral Interventions

More than 25 million Americans have diabetes, yet as many as 60 percent of type 2 diabetes patients do not follow treatment plans prescribed by their health care provider and about 50 percent fail to meet treatment recommendations for control of blood glucose levels. Consistent adherence to oral medications and injectable insulin, both used to keep blood glucose levels in check, is particularly challenging among young patients and ethnic minorities. Consequences are significant: lack of adherence can lead to or exacerbate eye disease, kidney disease and nerve damage.

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Dr. Jeffrey Gonzalez

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First Multidisciplinary Research Day Highlights Undergraduate Students’ Work in Wide Range of Fields

On November 15, Yeshiva College and Stern College for Women hosted their first joint Research Day across multiple disciplines. The event celebrated the research of undergraduates in fields ranging from the humanities to natural and mathematical sciences and allowed students to share their work and hone their presentation skills, while providing attendees an opportunity to learn from their peers and get a taste of the rich, exciting world of research.

Celebrating Student Research, cross-dscipline

A student explains her research to Dr. Rachel Mesch, one of the event’s judges.

The program began with keynote presentations from students representing the social sciences, natural sciences and the humanities. Yael Farzan, a Stern College student whose research focused on religion and expressive writing as predictors of prosocial behavior, noted that despite their differences, researchers in these fields shared similar qualities. “To be a good psychologist you need to ask questions, open your eyes and be curious about the world around you,” she said. “We are all by nature psychologists and sociologists.”

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Eleven YU Undergrads Participate in Advanced Biomedical Research Program

Eleven Yeshiva University undergraduates have been selected to participate in the Summer Undergraduate Research Program (SURP), an advanced biomedical research program at YU’s Albert Einstein College of Medicine. Directed by Dr. Victoria Freedman, Einstein’s associate dean for graduate programs in the biomedical sciences, and Dr. Barry Potvin, professor of biology at Yeshiva College and visiting professor in the cell biology department at Einstein, the program has drawn 58 students in total from a variety of colleges and universities to engage in cutting-edge scientific studies.

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Stern College’s Nechama Dreyfus is conducting research in the animal imaging lab at Einstein’s Nuclear Medicine and Biophysics Department.

In fields ranging from neuroscience to epidemiology to microbiology, the students receive hands-on research experience in their areas of interest normally reserved for graduate-level work.

“I’m particularly enjoying my placement in Dr. Linda Jelicks’s animal imaging lab within the Nuclear Medicine and Biophysics Department at Einstein because this technology and field are completely new to me,” said Nechama Dreyfus, a biochemistry major at Stern College for Women. Read the rest of this entry…

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Summer Science Research Program Pairs YU Students with Bar-Ilan Faculty; Opens Door for Future Collaboration 

Twenty eight select undergraduate science majors from Yeshiva College and Stern College for Women are participating in the third Summer Science Research Internship program, a joint initiative with Yeshiva University and Bar-Ilan University (BIU) that enables students to gain hands-on experience in emerging scientific fields while being mentored by Israel’s top scientists.

Yeshiva College student David Kornbluth

Yeshiva College’s David Kornbluth takes part in the Summer Science Research Internship Program at Bar-Ilan.

During the seven-week research experience, the students are placed in intensive internships with top BIU faculty members, including those from the Institute for Nanotechnology and Advanced Materials and the Gonda Brain Research Center, and will work in the University’s state-of-the-art research laboratories.

The program, which runs from June 23 – August 8, was founded by Dr. Chaim Sukenik, a Yeshiva College alumnus who holds the Edward and Judy Steinberg Chair in Nanotechnology at Bar-Ilan and was recently appointed incoming president of the Jerusalem College of Technology. Read the rest of this entry…

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Five Yeshiva College Students to Participate in Advanced Undergraduate Research Program

Five Yeshiva College students have been selected to perform advanced undergraduate level research as part of the Henry Kressel Research Scholarship. Now in its sixth year, the scholarship program—established by Dr. Henry Kressel, chairman of the YU Board of Trustees,  managing director of Warburg Pincus LLC and a Yeshiva College graduate—offers students the opportunity to craft a year-long intensive research project under the direct supervision of University faculty.

Mehlman, Kornbluth, Weingarten, Cohen and Grunblatt

Kressel Scholars Yoni Mehlman, Yosef Kornbluth, Mark Weingarten, Barry Cohen and Eli Grunblatt

This year’s recipients are Barry Cohen, Eli Grunblatt, Yosef Kornbluth, Yoni Mehlman, and Mark Weingarten.

The scholars will each receive a stipend of $6,000 for the year, along with appropriate research-support expenses. Following their research tenure, Kressel Scholars will be encouraged to share their work in professional and peer circles to stimulate a larger intellectual discussion on their chosen topic.

The students’ research, conducted under the guidance of a faculty member, will focus on a variety of subjects. Read the rest of this entry…

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