Dates: June 25 - August 5, 2023
Program Length: 6 weeks
Format: In person
Student Profile: Rising sophomore - senior
Schedule: M - F, 9am - 4pm
Food & Environmental Chemical Impact on Development of Obesity (Park Lab)
Our competitive Research Intensives program places high-achieving high school students in professional working labs alongside distinguished faculty, graduate and undergraduate students.
Research Intensive in the Food & Environmental Chemical Impact on Development of Obesity Lab (Park Lab)
The current epidemic of obesity cannot be explained completely by the dietary, social and/or behavioral changes that have occurred over the past several decades. Simultaneously, there are emerging evidences that persistent organic pollutants are linked to excessive weight gain and altered glucose homeostasis. With this background, the current focuses of research are  discovering food bioactives that can help prevent obesity and  determining the potential causative environmental chemicals for obesity.
Potential projects involve determining the biochemical mechanisms of food contaminants and food bioactives on altered lipid metabolism using Caenorhabditis elegans model. Caenorhabditis elegans is a nematode, eukaryotic, multi-organ animal model, which is increasingly utilized for biological and medical studies including areas in obesity research. This is a useful model over other in vitro tissue culture and rodent animal models.
The Park Lab can host 3 students. Learn more.
During this program, high school students will assist UMass faculty and graduate students in research labs while learning about research methodologies and contributing to ongoing research studies. Each student will create and present a research poster to faculty, fellow students, friends and family at a poster session at the end of the program.
Students will come away with an introduction to the field of Biology, firsthand experience with university-level research, and an understanding of opportunities that exist for undergraduate students at a major R1 university such as UMass Amherst.
For all Research Intensives applications: In your statement of interest, please include 3 lab choices from our list of available labs along with a brief explanation of your interest in each one.