This award is funded under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (Public Law 111-5).
Pepperdine University has acquired a Cell Lab Quanta SC Flow Cytometer system. The flow cytometer instrument will be utilized in our summer undergraduate research programs and Honor's research program in original, student generated research projects. This instrument will be utilized in a variety of undergraduate research projects carried out in the context of the biology department's current summer program funded in part through a NSF-REU site grant. Acquisition of a flow cytometer will allow us to introduce new concepts into the laboratories of our core cell biology, biochemistry and molecular biology courses, several of our upper-division biology elective courses, and related courses in sports medicine and psychology. Each faculty member associated with this grant is tasked to develop a new undergraduate laboratory teaching module that explores an application of flow cytometry in cell structure or function. The grant will provide undergraduate students with access to the latest equipment for research in molecular and cellular biology. Funds will foster undergraduate research in cell and molecular biology to facilitate interest in graduate studies in cell and molecular biology and also provide training to students interested in employment in biotechnology industries. Specific research programs that will be aided through acquisition of this instrument are: (1) detection of stress signal molecules in pre- and post-apoptotic cells; (2) examining downstream targets in Notch signaling of a mixed population of 7F2 cells; (3) examining changes in levels of phosphorylated and total CaMKII in the hippocampus following neural injury; (4) examining cellular signaling in mammalian vascular smooth muscle under normal and short term exercise training regimes; and (5) examining ploidy and hybridization in chaparral plants. In addition, we will be able to connect undergraduate research and teaching in biology with research and teaching conducted in psychology and sports medicine, thus broadening the interest base and student interconnections between these disciplines within Seaver College at Pepperdine University. Results of the research efforts accomplished from this grant will be available on each investigator's web pages and in peer reviewed publications.