Two Ouachita Baptist University students recently won awards at the Arkansas INBRE Research Convention in Fayetteville. Max Ford, a sophomore chemistry major from Arkadelphia, earned first place in the chemistry and biochemistry poster competition and Lauren Nelson, a senior biology major from Russellville, Ark., was awarded second place in the biology oral presentations competition.
Ford and Nelson both competed against other undergraduate students from across the state for their awards. INBRE is the IDeA Network of Biomedical Research Excellence. It is funded by a grant from the National Center for Research Resources under the Institutional Development Award (IDeA) Program of the National Institutes of Health.
“Overall, it was a rewarding experience to win. It was nice to see how my work and dedication toward this project paid off,” Ford said. “I think I won because my research topic was interesting and I felt as though I presented it well on my poster.
“In a nutshell,” Ford explained, “I did computational modeling of 4-nitroanisole with the 3E6I crystal structure of the enzyme CYP2E1.”
Nelson’s project explored whether “cannabinoids could induce death in retinoblastoma cells so that they could potentially be used to treat retinoblastoma,” she explained.
“It was a great honor to win this award after putting so much time into this project and presentation,” Nelson added. “I worked on this project for about 10 weeks through the OBU summer research program.”
In March, Ford and Nelson will attend the American Chemical Society National Convention to present their work.
By Meg Gosser