Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Award-winning Student Investigates Potential Antibiotic

07.08.2008
Thompson Rivers University student Quinn Mason won a prestigious award for a presentation on his research in support of a larger project underway by his supervisor Dr. Cynthia Ross Friedman, who, while examining a number of biological and ecological aspects related to dwarf mistletoe, found that the extract from dwarf mistletoe works against the ‘superbug,’ MRSA.

Thompson Rivers University (TRU) graduate Quinn Mason tied for first place, winning the "Lionel Cinq-Mars Award" for the best oral presentation by a student as a contributed paper at "Botany without Borders," the Joint Annual Meeting of the Canadian Botanical Association (CBA)/L’Association Botanique du Canada (ABC), American Fern Society, American Society of Plant Taxonomists and the Botanical Society of America, held at UBC last week.

Mason, along with fellow presenter Charles Vaudry, whose pre-presentation abstracts prompted organizers to fund their trips to the conference with a ‘Keith Winterhalder Undergraduate Travel Award,’ was one of seven TRU students presenting at the conference.

“Impressively, Quinn competed against undergraduate students, master’s students, and Ph.D. students from all across Canada, and tied for first place. This is really prestigious, particularly as this is the premiere conference for anyone studying and researching plant biology in North America and beyond; many preeminent botanists were there,” said TRU biology professor Cynthia Ross Friedman.

... more about:
»Arceuthobium »Friedman »Science »TRU »dwarf
Mason’s award-winning presentation described his research project, “Extraction, Partial Purification and Susceptibility Testing of a Potentially Novel Antibiotic from Lodgepole Pine Dwarf Mistletoe (Arceuthobium americanum).”

The study, which the cellular, molecular and microbial biology major began as an honours project in his final year, continued after he graduated from TRU with his Bachelor of Science degree this past June after he received funding in the form of a prestigious Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC) student research award (USRA).

His work supports the larger research project underway by his supervisor Dr. Ross Friedman, who is examining a number of biological and ecological aspects related to dwarf mistletoe, an evergreen parasitic plant found on conifers in Canada,

“We don’t usually think of northern forest plants as important sources of pharmaceuticals,” said Ross-Friedman, ‘but in the course of this study, we checked out the antimicrobial properties of dwarf mistletoe, partly because we have all the equipment here, as a result of the investigations of another TRU microbiologist, Naowarat Cheeptham, who studies the antimicrobial properties of fungi, and partly because I had technical help from natural products chemist, Dr. Bruno Cinel.”

“I was kind of surprised to find that the extract from dwarf mistletoe works against the so-called ‘superbug,’ MRSA,” said Ross Friedman, who, along with TRU Master of Science in Environmental Sciences student, Kathryn Pernitsky, made the original discovery and filed the patents.

If the plant does yield a new antibiotic, Mason will benefit in another way: he plans to attend medical school once his research project is finished. TRU’s Associate Vice President, Research and Graduate Studies, Dr. Nancy Van Wagoner, is certain of Mason’s future success.

“It is not surprising that many TRU graduates who have gone on to graduate school have indicated that they excel because they have already worked in a lab or in the field and have had the opportunity to engage in original research,” she said.

“One of TRU’s distinguishing features is the dedication of its faculty in working one-on-one with undergraduate students who wish to engage in independent research. Students at the bachelor degree level benefit from being able to design and pursue their own research projects under the direct supervision and mentorship of a faculty member engaged in a similar line of investigation.”

Other mistletoe-related talks by TRU students and faculty at the conference included:

Biosurfactants in the dwarf mistletoe, Arceuthobium americanum (Viscaceae)
Vaudry, Charles (student); Cinel, Bruno; Ross Friedman, Cynthia; Van Hamme, Jonathan.
Effect of male dwarf mistletoe (Arceuthobium americanum) infection on the potential antimicrobial properties of lodgepole pine (Pinus contorta var. latifolia

Ross Friedman, Cynthia; More, Fawna N (student).

Do extracts from dwarf mistletoe (Arceuthobium, Viscaceae) affect the viability of salmon cells in tissue culture?

Koziura, Karl J. (student); Ross Friedman, Cynthia.

Immunolocalization of aquaporins in the fruit of the dwarf mistletoe Arceuthobium americanum (Viscaceae).

Ross Friedman, Cynthia.

For more information, please contact:
Quinn Mason at qdmason@gmail.com or phone (250) 574-3167
Dr. Cynthia Ross Friedman at cross@tru.ca or phone (250) 377-3459
Charles Vaudry at chuck66_@hotmail.com or phone (250) 434-6354
Dr. Nancy Van Wagoner at nvanwagoner@tru.ca or phone (250) 314-7622

Quinn Mason | Newswise Science News
Further information:
http://www.tru.ca/

Further reports about: Arceuthobium Friedman Science TRU dwarf

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Link Discovered between Immune System, Brain Structure and Memory
26.04.2017 | Universität Basel

nachricht Researchers develop eco-friendly, 4-in-1 catalyst
25.04.2017 | Brown University

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Making lightweight construction suitable for series production

More and more automobile companies are focusing on body parts made of carbon fiber reinforced plastics (CFRP). However, manufacturing and repair costs must be further reduced in order to make CFRP more economical in use. Together with the Volkswagen AG and five other partners in the project HolQueSt 3D, the Laser Zentrum Hannover e.V. (LZH) has developed laser processes for the automatic trimming, drilling and repair of three-dimensional components.

Automated manufacturing processes are the basis for ultimately establishing the series production of CFRP components. In the project HolQueSt 3D, the LZH has...

Im Focus: Wonder material? Novel nanotube structure strengthens thin films for flexible electronics

Reflecting the structure of composites found in nature and the ancient world, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have synthesized thin carbon nanotube (CNT) textiles that exhibit both high electrical conductivity and a level of toughness that is about fifty times higher than copper films, currently used in electronics.

"The structural robustness of thin metal films has significant importance for the reliable operation of smart skin and flexible electronics including...

Im Focus: Deep inside Galaxy M87

The nearby, giant radio galaxy M87 hosts a supermassive black hole (BH) and is well-known for its bright jet dominating the spectrum over ten orders of magnitude in frequency. Due to its proximity, jet prominence, and the large black hole mass, M87 is the best laboratory for investigating the formation, acceleration, and collimation of relativistic jets. A research team led by Silke Britzen from the Max Planck Institute for Radio Astronomy in Bonn, Germany, has found strong indication for turbulent processes connecting the accretion disk and the jet of that galaxy providing insights into the longstanding problem of the origin of astrophysical jets.

Supermassive black holes form some of the most enigmatic phenomena in astrophysics. Their enormous energy output is supposed to be generated by the...

Im Focus: A Quantum Low Pass for Photons

Physicists in Garching observe novel quantum effect that limits the number of emitted photons.

The probability to find a certain number of photons inside a laser pulse usually corresponds to a classical distribution of independent events, the so-called...

Im Focus: Microprocessors based on a layer of just three atoms

Microprocessors based on atomically thin materials hold the promise of the evolution of traditional processors as well as new applications in the field of flexible electronics. Now, a TU Wien research team led by Thomas Müller has made a breakthrough in this field as part of an ongoing research project.

Two-dimensional materials, or 2D materials for short, are extremely versatile, although – or often more precisely because – they are made up of just one or a...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Expert meeting “Health Business Connect” will connect international medical technology companies

20.04.2017 | Event News

Wenn der Computer das Gehirn austrickst

18.04.2017 | Event News

7th International Conference on Crystalline Silicon Photovoltaics in Freiburg on April 3-5, 2017

03.04.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Scientist invents way to trigger artificial photosynthesis to clean air

26.04.2017 | Materials Sciences

Ammonium nitrogen input increases the synthesis of anticarcinogenic compounds in broccoli

26.04.2017 | Agricultural and Forestry Science

SwRI-led team discovers lull in Mars' giant impact history

26.04.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>