After a long and difficult deliberation, we have selected the recipients for the Summer 2009 NextBio Travel Grant!
We were impressed with the quality of essays and very happy to hear about the different ways in which NextBio has been useful to graduate students in the pursuit of their research. The three students who were selected for this quarter’s travel grant are:
Abhishek is a second year PhD student in bioengineering at the University of Auckland who using modeling to study hormone dynamics. In his essay, Abhishek relates how a discovery in NextBio helped direct his research.
In order to develop a mathematical model of the steroid synthesis I was searching for functional mechanism of the steroidogenic acute regulatory protein or StAR. A simple keyword search using StAR returned a well categorized results page and further exploration and filtering of results landed me on a data correlation between StAR and congenital adrenal hyperplasia. Inspired from this small but crucial finding I devoted one section of my model to simulate the mechanistic basis of the congenital adrenal hyperplasia, and based on model sensitivity analysis we found new insights into the underlying process and emerging trends in diseased system. This was possible only because of the NextBio which provided an abstracted data correlation derived from several high-throughput data sources.
He goes on to discuss the collaboration features and the NextBio recommendation service and then wraps up the essay with a wonderful final paragraph on his vision for the future of science. I highly recommend you read the full text of Abhishek’s essay.