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Lab seeks pre-med student to study retinal detachment


Faculty Mentor: Eileen Hwang
Title: Assistant Professor
College: Medicine
School / Department: Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences

Project description

Dr. Hwang is an MD PhD studying retinal detachment, which affects 1 in 200 Americans and frequently causes permanent visual impairment. Vitreous abnormalities lead to retinal detachment, but the pathway involved is poorly understood. There is a critical need to characterize vitreous abnormalities in conditions which predispose to retinal detachment. Our laboratory uses genetic mouse models of Stickler syndrome and aged wild-type mouse to test the hypothesis that vitreous structural abnormalities lead to retinal detachment. We anticipate that by investigating underlying vitreous abnormalities, we can devise more effective ways to prevent retinal detachment.

 

Keywords: ophthalmology, retina, eye, laboratory, microscopy, imaging, dissection, animal

Student Role: The student will work directly alongside Dr. Hwang and the senior lab specialist to learn and perform cutting edge techniques in microdissection, microscopy, and image processing. Once trained, the student will also be responsible for managing the mouse colony and preparing eye specimens from mice.
Student Benefits: We will provide the student with the opportunity to contribute at a level to gain authorship on a peer reviewed publication and meeting presentations.  For pre-med students, Dr. Hwang will provide shadowing experiences, a recommendation letter, flexibility to study for MCATs, and access to a network of mentees who are premedical students, medical students, and medical residents.
Project Duration: 1-3 years. 6 hours/week, with option of transition to 30-40 hours/week in the future.
Opportunity Type: Research Assistant
Opportunity Location Type: In Person
Is this a paid opportunity: Yes
Minimum Requirements: The student must be able to spend at least an hour in the lab mid-morning Monday - Wednesday this semester. Previous lab experience preferred but not required. CV or resume required.
How To Apply: Contact Eileen Hwang eileen.hwang@hsc.utah.edu