The Jackson Laboratory welcomes Maine high school students to visit the Bar Harbor campus on Tuesday, May 22, 2018. This one-day Open House will provide high school students an opportunity to meet and interact with JAX scientists, learn about genetics and genomics research, and participate in hands-on workshops of their choosing.
The Maine High School Open House is open to any high school student in Maine who has a strong interest in biomedical research and who intends to pursue higher education or a career in biomedicine.
This program is designed for individual student participants, or small groups of students who will most benefit from an on-site experience at The Jackson Laboratory. For example, students who would request a one-day job shadow should attend this program in lieu of a more limited job shadow experience.
Bus service will be provided with stops in Portland, Augusta, and Bangor to facilitate transportation to this Open House.
Van service along the Rt 1 corridor will also be provided, departing Camden Hills Regional High School with stops TBD.
Meet the Mice - Kristen Cough, Animal Use Trainer, Veterinary Services. In this workshop, students will be introduced to several mouse models of human disease. Participants will observe, up close, unique strains of laboratory mouse designed, produced, and distributed by The Jackson Laboratory to researchers worldwide. Individuals entering the training lab must wear closed toed and heeled shoes and full length pants or skirts (i.e. no exposed skin below the waist.)
Enterprise IT infrastructure for high bandwidth and big data - Nelson Geel, Director, IT Enterprise Architecture & Engineering, Information Technology. This workshop will introduce the practice and challenges of managing application services, computation and data storage in the biomedical research enterprise. An overview of the evolution of these elements over the past two decades will be provided and followed by discussion of current trends and evolving methodologies. Practical examples from JAX IT experience will be leveraged to illustrate the impact of IT infrastructure on real life research operations.
This Title Matters – Danielle Meier, Creative Lead for Design, JAX Creative. You know YOUR work — but how well do you explain it? In this interactive workshop we will explore key tips and tricks to written, oral and design communication that will help you convey ideas. Spoiler alert: we won’t be using Comic Sans.
Research workshop 1: Solving biological problems with statistics, programming, and code - Gregg TeHennepe, Project Manager; Dave Walton, Principal Scientific Software Engineer; Vivek Philip, Ph.D., Associate Director, Computational Sciences. This hands-on workshop will introduce the fields of bioinformatics and scientific software engineering to participants, providing background on the educational and career paths for these fields, and then walking through data analysis using the Mouse Phenome Database. Participants will learn how to look for relationships between physical and behavioral traits (phenotypes) and genetic background and genes (genotypes). Please plan to bring a laptop to the workshop.
Research workshop 2: An exploration of mammalian neurocircuitry - Rob Burgess, Ph.D., Professor, Principal Investigator; Greg Cox, Ph.D., Professor, Principal Investigator. This workshop will explore the basics and mysteries of mammalian neurocircuitry starting with basic reflexes and moving toward more complex circuits underlying behavior. We will discuss current research in optogenetics and the rehabilitation of neural circuits in human spinal cord injury patients.
Research workshop 3: Stem cell research - Candice Byers, Predoctoral Associate, Christopher Baker lab; Dan Cortes, M.D., Ph.D., Postdoctoral Associate, Martin Pera lab. In this workshop, we will teach what stem cells are and the origin of stem cells and how they are used in research. Students will work with (both embryonic and induced) pluripotent stem cells from mouse and human, and neural stem cells. They will be able to see how they are differentiated into the three different germ layers which give rise to all cell types of an adult. Finally, they will have the opportunity to thaw, pass and count immunolabeled cells. In the end, students will have a broad understanding of how stem cell research is done and how they can use it as a tool or study stem cell biology if they need to.
Research workshop 4: Gene editing and CRISPR – Carrie Cowan, Ph.D., Director, Predoctoral and Postdoctoral Training, JAX Genomic Education. More productive crops, better eyesight, and the end of inherited diseases. Designer babies, super-humans, and the resurrection of wooly mammoths? We invite you to see what gene editing is all about—how it's being used, where its limitation are, and what it means for the future. During the workshop, you'll see how CRISPR works and design your own CRISPR experiment.
Biomedical research tech 1: Histopathology - Lesley Bechtold, Senior Manager, Histopathology Services. Histopathology is the study of tissues and organs from vertebrate animals. Students will have an opportunity to assist with organ dissection from mice in the JAX Necropsy Suite. This will be followed with some hands-on paraffin sectioning and staining in the Histology Lab. Finally, we’ll look at slides in the microscope. This workshop is hands on and is a great opportunity for students interested in dissection, anatomy, and biological tissues. Students who are squeamish about handling biological tissues should not attend this workshop.
Biomedical research tech 2: Behavioral studies of Alzheimer’s Disease - Ambreen Sayed, Predoctoral Associate, Cox lab; Emily Viands, Research Assistant I, Center for Biometric Analysis; Gabi Little, Research Assistant I, Center for Biometric Analysis. In this module students will learn about behavioral assays used to study mouse models of human behavior and genetic disorders such as Alzheimer's disease. Students will watch and score videos to see how some cognitive parameters like memory loss and physical parameters like muscle weakness are tested.
Biomedical research tech 3: Behavior, addiction, LEGO, and how we can model the interaction between –Michael Leonardo, Research Assistant, and Rainy Dodd, Research Assistant, Center for Systems Neurogenetics of Addiction; Emily Spaulding, Predoctoral Associate, Burgess lab. In this module students will be given an opportunity to model genetic diversity and infer how genotype can relate to behavior. Students will learn how mouse behavior is observed and measured using behavioral analysis tools and will interpret data they generate during the workshop. We will explore the study of addiction behavior using a LEGO classroom prototype. Finally, students will be given an interactive demo on the fundamentals of delay discounting, including an opportunity to earn some sweet rewards.
College workshop: Starting and sustaining your biomedical research education in Maine - Kristy Townshend, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Neurobiology, UMaine and Andrea Tilden, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Biology, Colby College. The paths to a career in biomedicine are immensely various. Many students (including the speakers) started their biomedical careers right here in Maine. Learn about and discuss your undergraduate education options and how to connect undergraduate degree with a career in biomedicine. This workshop will also explore what undergraduate research is like, what research mentors expect of undergraduate research assistants, the types of projects you may do, and how undergraduate research can inform your higher education and career choices.