BioE Student Wins ASPB Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship
Amanda Dee, E’22, bioengineering, was awarded the 2021 American Society of Plant Biologists Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship (ASPB SURF) to pursue her research with ChE/COS Associate Professor Carolyn Lee-Parsons and her graduate mentor, Ms. Krystyna Farrell.
Dee is a bioengineering student with minors in math and music. Originally from Amherst, Massachusetts, she was introduced to the field of plant biology by a family friend at the age of 13. Since then, Dee has remained enamored with the field. Upon joining Northeastern, Dee began working in the Cell and Tissue Engineering research area and in the laboratory of Prof. Lee-Parsons during her first semester of her freshman year. The Lee-Parsons lab studies and engineers the production of critical anticancer compounds, vinblastine and vincristine, from the medicinal plant Catharanthus roseus, commonly known as the Madagascar periwinkle.
Currently, Dee is studying this plant whose anti-cancer compounds is used to treat childhood cancer. She will be designing and testing synthetic biology tools for altering the expression of on/off switches or transcription factors involved in regulating the production of medicinal compounds from the C. roseus plant. The award funds her 10 weeks of research in the summer and the opportunity to present at the 2022 ASPB Annual Conference (Portland, Oregon).