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SURF: Announcements of Opportunity

Below are Announcements of Opportunity posted by Caltech faculty and JPL technical staff for the SURF program. Additional AOs for the Amgen Scholars program can be found here.

Specific GROWTH projects being offerred for summer 2019 can be found here.

Each AO indicates whether or not it is open to non-Caltech students. If an AO is NOT open to non-Caltech students, please DO NOT contact the mentor.

Announcements of Opportunity are posted as they are received. Please check back regularly for new AO submissions! Remember: This is just one way that you can go about identifying a suitable project and/or mentor.

Announcements for external summer programs are listed here.

Students pursuing opportunities at JPL must be
U.S. citizens or U.S. permanent residents.

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Project:  Analysis of Dural Lymphatics in pathologic situations
Disciplines:  Biochemistry, Neuroscience
Mentor:  Jeff Chen, Professor, Neurological Surgery, (CCE),, Phone: 7144566966
Mentor URL:  (opens in new window)
AO Contact:  Leslie Wetterings,
Background:  NOTE:This project is being offered by a Caltech alum and will be conducted at University of California, Irvine in Orange, California.
Dural Lymphatics have recently been re-discovered and are believed to be important in the bulk of flow of fluid through the brain. This has profound implications on neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s or normal pressure hydrocephalus (NPH) where the turnover of cerebrospinal fluid may be abnormal and may lead to the build up of abnormal toxins such as beta amyloid. In acute situations such as traumatic brain injury (TBI), abnormalities in flow may exacerbate the symptoms of the head injury and may lead to long term sequelae.
Description:  The student will be involved in the analysis of human dural lymphatics in pathologic conditions such as Alzheimer’s disease or traumatic brain injury using immunohistochemical staining techniques. We also have a rodent model of TBI and there is the possibility of doing analysis of the dural lymphatics in more detail after a concussion or more severe TBI. This may involve immunohistochemical staining techniques, ELISA, and Western blotting.
References:  Iliff JJ,Wang M, Liao Y, et al. A paravascular pathway
facilitatesCSF flow through the brain parenchyma and
the clearance of interstitial solutes, including amyloid.
Sci Transl Med. 2012;4(147):147ra111-147ra111.
2. Aspelund A, Antila S, Proulx ST, et al. A
dural lymphatic vascular system that drains brain
interstitial fluid and macromolecules. J Exp Med.
3. Louveau A, Smirnov I, Keyes TJ, et al. Structural
and functional features of central nervous
system lymphatic vessels. Nature. 2015;523(7560):
4. Absinta M, Ha SK, Nair G, et al. Human and
nonhuman primate meninges harbor lymphatic vessels
that can be visualized noninvasively by MRI. Elife.

Student Requirements:  Biochemistry and biochemistry lab, Neurobiology, microscopy skills
Programs:  This AO can be done under the following programs:

  Program    Available To
       SURF    Caltech students only 

Click on a program name for program info and application requirements.

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