The Home of Midwood Science Research

Creating Sustainable Cities: Pathways to Action

Posted on Thursday, March 9, 2017 by for Extra Credit, Juniors, Seniors.

Creating Sustainable Cities: Pathways to Action will provide a unique platform for students, organizations, and employers to meet and learn about exciting opportunities in fields related to urban sustainability.

Topics will include local ecosystem restoration and resilience, urban transportation, tools for urban sustainability, avenues of community involvement, and the rise of citizen science. The goal of the event is to introduce high school and college students to the concept of urban sustainability and create awareness for opportunities to get engaged. Speakers include.

AP Enviromental Science students and anyone else is welcome to attend. Register through Eventbrite. Extra credit will be awarded for students who complete the usual public lecture assignment for one of the speakers.

You are invited to this Friday’s LAB Out Loud [LOL] at The Rockefeller University

Posted on Tuesday, March 7, 2017 by for Extra Credit, Juniors, Seniors.

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Friday
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You are invited to this Friday’s LAB Out Loud [LOL] at The Rockefeller University — Microbial Engineers: The Science of Fermented Foods (Friday, March 10, 2017 4:30 PM–7:00 PM).

Microbes, like bacteria, yeast, and mold, are the invisible engineers of the planet. They have the power to transform rocks into minerals, logs into soil, and raw ingredients into delicious fermented foods like cheese, chocolate, and pickles. In the Wolfe lab, we use fermented foods as model systems to better understand these invisible engineers, including how microbes interact with each other and with their environments. From fungal superhighways in cheese rinds to slimy biofilms in fermented tea, our talk will highlight the surprising microbial communities living in your favorite fermented foods.

Come hear scientists Dr. Benjamin Wolfe and Elizabeth Landis from Tufts University share their work using food to study microbial ecosystems! Following the talk, students will have a chance to network with scientists and determine their microbial soul-mates through a fun activity.

This event is open to all high school students in the New York City area, free of charge! Registration must be submitted by attending high school students directly — a change from previous Lab Out Loud [LOL] events. All students under age 18 must obtain parental consent while completing the online form. Extra credit will be awarded to all students who provide proof of attendance and complete the usual assignment by the next school day.

Images of fermented foods and bacterial cultures

Paper It Forward

Posted on Tuesday, February 14, 2017 by for Extra Credit, Juniors, Seniors.

Sophomore research students are gearing up to submit their AP Capstone assessment to the College Board at the end of this week. Since Ms. Mosley is unable to give direct feedback, we would like juniors and seniors to help the sophomores with their papers. Each junior/senior will work with 2 two sophomores, go over their paper, and help them edit it against a provided rubric.

This activity will take place Wednesday, February 15 and Thursday, February 16 during period 4. Each day you participate adds 1 point toward your final grade.

Please see Ms. Mosley by the end of the day today if you are interested and available.

2017 DNA Day Essay Contest

Posted on Sunday, January 8, 2017 by for Extra Credit, Juniors, Seniors.

The question for this year’s American Society of Human Genetics (ASHG) DNA Day Essay Contest is now available. This competition is ideal for AP Biology students (current or former) or research students interning in a lab focused on genetics — especially genetics as it relates to medicine.

Question: In the early 1990s, gene therapy was hailed as a potential treatment or cure for many genetic diseases and conditions. Unfortunately, problems during clinical trials, including the death of a patient due to a fatal immune reaction, forced scientists to re-think their strategies. Recent advances in biology have made gene therapy more promising than ever and expanded the field beyond its original concept of providing an additional, functional copy of a malfunctioning gene to specific cells. Choose one modern example of gene therapy (since 2005), describe the disease or condition researchers are attempting to treat, and explain how the therapy/approach might repair the underlying cause of the disease or condition.

Have a quick read of the 2017 contest rules, rubric, and deadlines before beginning. This contest is open to students in grades 9–12 worldwide. Essays must be written in English and are limited to 750 words, not including references. (Essays must include at least one reference. More than one reference is recommended.) Entries must be authenticated by a teacher. No entries may be submitted without the approval of Ms. Ross. Essays must be submitted electronically on or before March 11, 2017. Essays are expected to be well reasoned arguments indicative of a depth of understanding of the concepts related to the question. Each essay will be read by three judges from the ASHG.

2017 DNA Day logo The American Society of Human Genetics (ASHG) logo

Are you ready for NYCSEF Paperwork Day?

Posted on Tuesday, December 6, 2016 by for NYCSEF, Seniors.

Seniors. We will be assembling paperwork for NYCSEF on Monday, December 12, 2016 starting period 7. All copies will be made at this time using the heavy duty photocopier in Mr. Rosenfeld’s office (A200) or Mr. Spergel's office (A300). I will bring large envelopes, staples, binder clips, and labels. You will bring your completed paperwork including …

See you Monday.

Rolls of paper for a Heidelberg Contiweb press

NYCSEF Signature Pages

Posted on Monday, December 5, 2016 by for NYCSEF, Seniors.

Seniors, I need your NYCSEF signature pages on or before Wednesday, December 7, 2016 so the Principal and I can sign them. Please print the Principal’s name (Michael McDonnell) for him, but do not sign or date the form (obviously). Please do the same for my name (Glenn Elert). I will sign part b as the Science/Research Teacher for all seniors. The rest of the paperwork along with a complete research paper must be ready by Monday, December 12, 2016. All photocopying will be done at Midwood with the exception of pages in your report that contain color images or diagrams. Copies of those pages are the responsibility of the student.

Weill Cornell Medical College Annual Regional Pre­-Medical Conference

Posted on Monday, October 24, 2016 by for Extra Credit, Juniors, Seniors.

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Weill Cornell Medical College will conduct its Annual Regional Pre­-Medical Conference for high school and undergraduate college students on Saturday, December 3, 2016 from 9:00 AM to 4:30 PM. Conference objectives include: workshops on preparing for a career in the health professions and networking opportunities with medical students, physicians, and administrators. Lunch will be provided. The conference will be held in the Uris Auditorium, 1300 York Avenue at 69th Street on the Upper East Side of Manhattan. The nearest subway is the 6 train at 68th Street–Hunter College.

Due to the large number of responses in past years, and the limited seating capacity of the auditorium, the conference organizers are requesting that guidance counselors only register students who are keenly interested and in attending the conference. High schools are being asked to register no more than 10 students per school. See Ms. Murdoch in room 134 for information on how to register through Eventbrite. The deadline for registration is Thursday, November 10, 2016. This event has no website. For more information contact Sahira Torres at sjt2003@med.cornell.edu or 212-746-3390.

Weill Cornell Medical College logo banner

GoViral at The Rockefeller University

Posted on Sunday, October 16, 2016 by for Extra Credit, Juniors, Lectures, Seniors, Sophomores.

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   Friday   
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Come learn about viruses and other infectious diseases at a new lecture series at The Rockefeller University on Friday, November 4, 2016 from 4:30–6:30 PM. GoViral Mapping the Spread of Viruses in the Community is lecture-discussion presented by Sofia Ahsanuddin. Ms. Ahsanuddin is a researcher in the Chunra Lab at the NYU Tandon School of Engineering and the Mason Lab at Weill Cornell Medical College and a graduate of the Macaulay Honors College at Brooklyn College. She has been instrumental in a series of related public health projects: Pathomap, MetaSUB, and GoViral.

Pathomap is a research project by Weill Cornell Medical College to study the microbiome and metagenome of the built environment of NYC. Pathomap has since expanded into MetaSUB, a global initiative in 39 cities on six continents. "From the sidewalk to the subway pole, our cities are living laboratories of genetic information." For a quick (11 minute) summary of Pathomap and MetaSUB, watch Ms. Ahsanuddin’s 2015 TEDxCUNY presentation.

Screen shot
Cracking the Genetic Code of Our Cities
on YouTube

GoViral is a community participatory research study that aims to map, monitor and measure the spread of acute respiratory infections. Participants sign up on goviralstudy.com and record survey data weekly, including information about any symptoms they may have. They are also sent a respiratory sample kit that is easy to use at home and ship back to the lab. A PCR respiratory assay is then performed to determine which viruses are present in the participant’s sample. Data gathered are presented on the project’s website in an interactive, visual display that can be used by participant’s to learn more about their own health and for researchers to learn more about public health and epidemiology (the spread of infectious diseases).

Screen shot
GoViral Introductory Video
on Vimeo

LAB Out Loud is The Rockefeller University’s interactive, science-cafe-style discussion series designed specifically for high school students. During these events, high-profile scientists from New York City will present their cutting-edge research to a high school student audience, allowing plenty of time for questions. After the talk, students are invited to network with each other, and with a variety local scientists over snacks and refreshments.

Ms. Mosley and I have obtained 35 tickets each for this event. Students cannot register on their own or show up without a ticket. Details on how to obtain a ticket from one of us will follow in a subsequent email.

One point of extra credit will be awarded to all students who attend and complete this assignment. Submit your completed (typed) assignment to your supervising teacher at any time during the school day on Monday, November 7.

GoViral logo Pathomap screenshot MetaSUB logo

2016 Major Trends in Modern Cancer Research

Posted on Sunday, October 16, 2016 by for Extra Credit, Juniors, Lectures, Seniors, Sophomores.

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Thursday
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On Thursday, November 3, 2016, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center will host its eleventh annual Major Trends in Modern Cancer Research lecture for high school and college students. (Members of the public are also welcome to attend.) The event will take place from 5:30–7:30 PM on the first floor of Memorial Sloan Kettering’s Rockefeller Research Laboratories building (430 East 67th Street, between York and First Avenues).

Registration is easy, but finding a seat with a good view isn’t. This event has gotten so popular that the folks at MSKCC needed to set up satellite viewing stations in adjacent conference rooms. Get there a bit early if possible. Light refreshments have traditionally been served before the lectures begin (pizza, chips, fruit, soda, coffee). Single use MetroCards will be made available for any student who needs one to attend.

One point of extra credit will be awarded to all students who attend and complete this assignment for any one of the speakers. (Consult the Extra Credit webpage for more info.) Official attendance is taken by group photo at the end of the event. Submit your completed (typed) assignment to your supervising teacher at any time during the school day on Monday, November 7.

Portrait Moderator

Memorial Sloan Kettering President Craig B. Thompson studies molecular signaling pathways that regulate nutrient uptake and the role these pathways play in the regulation of cell growth and survival.

Portrait Hijacking the Genes: How Transcription Factors Promote Tumor Formation

Physician-scientist Yu Chen studies the role of transcription factors that are critical for prostate cancer development.

Portrait Ion Channels in Calcium Signaling: Understanding the Atomic and Chemical Mechanisms

Structural biologist Stephen Long studies the mechanisms of ion channels and enzymatic membrane proteins using a combination of scientific approaches.

Portrait Getting to Know Cancer: Using the Genome to Understand How Cancer Behaves

Molecular geneticist Elli Papaemmanuil studies patient data from clinical trials to explore how the genes in leukemia and other cancers affect disease progression and clinical outcomes.

World Maker Faire 2016 needs volunteers

Posted on Monday, September 19, 2016 by for Extra Credit, Juniors, Seniors, Sophomores.

World Maker Faire 2016 seal

The World Maker Faire 2016 takes place at the New York Hall of Science in Flushing, Queens Saturday and Sunday, October 1st and 2nd from 10 AM to 6 PM. Part science fair, part county fair, and part something entirely new, Maker Faire is an all-ages gathering of tech enthusiasts, crafters, educators, tinkerers, hobbyists, engineers, science clubs, authors, artists, students, and commercial exhibitors. All of these "makers" come to Maker Faire to show what they have made and to share what they have learned.

Maker Faire Traveler badge

You can be a part of Maker Faire for free if you volunteer to help them out. Sign up for the Maker Faire Traveler Program. Register for either Saturday or Sunday. Choose a convenient shift. Let them know what skills you have or what jobs you might like to do for them. When they ask if you have a group affiliation be sure to tell them you are from Midwood High School.

Extra credit will be awarded with the proper documentation, of course. After you sign up for a shift that works for you, forward your Eventbright email ticket to elert@midwoodscience.org. While you are there working, have someone take pictures of you doing something active — something that would look good on our website. Email me a couple of the best ones at your earliest convenience. If you see me there on Saturday, say "Hi".

World Maker Faire 2016 banner

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Glenn Elert — Coordinator

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Michael McDonnell — Principal
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