Plants respond to their environment in many ways. If the environment is stressful, plants often make compounds designed to protect themselves. Some of these compounds are useful to humans as well. This position involves the investigation of conditions under which plants make useful products such as antibiotics or anticancer agents. The intern will have the opportunity to begin a new project or join one of several ongoing research projects exploring the following questions: 1) whether common local plants make chemicals useful to humans 2) if any fungi isolated from healthy plants make antibiotics, antifungals, insecticides, etc. or 3) if soil has components that may be useful to humans. The intern will learn various laboratory techniques including sterile techniques, liquid, gas and thin layer chromatography, liquid and solid phase extraction, UV/VIS spectrometry, and HPLC. Regular laboratory attire is required.
Age or grade do not matter as long as the student has taken biology and chemistry. Female, minority, low-income, and first generation-college bound students are strongly encouraged to apply for this position.