Resolving the gene regulatory network for a fruit fly pigmentation trait whose modification underlies climate-driven phenotypic variation
Jenna Rose Rock, Corinne R. Stone
Species are in the midst of surviving changing climates that require ancestral trait phenotypes to convert to derived states better adapted to the present conditions. Adaptations can occur through genetic differences, raising questions how such differences translate into phenotypic change. A prerequisite to answering these evolutionary questions is to understand the genetic basis for trait development. Inanimals, traits are made by developmental programs known as gene regulatory networks (GRNs) that are hardwired in genomic DNA sequence. Each GRN includes a fraction of the genes within an organism’s genome, notably some that encode transcription factors that regulate the expression of the trait-making differentiation genes. This regulation occurs by certain transcription factors interacting with short DNA sequences, called binding sites, in gene regions known as cis-regulatory elements (CREs). For any CRE, its ability to activate gene expression in specific cell types and developmental times is due to the binding sites it possesses for a particular combination of transcription factors. To date, a GRN for a climate adapted trait has not been resolved. Thus, understanding how GRNs and their genes and CRE constituents facilitate or stymie adaptation remains speculative. Here, we share results from a collaborative research project to resolve the GRN responsible for a pigmentation pattern on the abdomen of Drosophila melanogaster fruit flies. Preliminary work identified most of the transcription factor genes for this GRN, though the connections between transcription factors and CRE binding sites remain largely unknown. By using genetic, bioinformatic, and microscopy approaches, we continue to resolve the important connections that orchestrate this GRN’s operation.Success in the pursuit will open future research opportunities to reveal how this GRN has been reformulated to deal with differing climates, findings that bear upon the genetic underpinnings of animal adaptations more broadly.
Abigail Bruns, Mackenzie Martin, Grace Oldfield, Emerson Phares, Laura Wilker
The 2022 Cohort of the University of Dayton River Stewards partnered with two urban neighborhoods over a year and a half and initiated a discussion about equitable park infrastructure in the City of Dayton. This project investigates the factors influencing park equity in Dayton such as redlining, funding, city planning, and community outreach efforts. As a way to specifically impact park equity, this cohort will facilitate the installation of two drinking water fountains in Cleveland Park and Highland Park. This project addresses the community's need for accessible and safe drinking water while in the parks ann will impact over fourteen thousand City of Dayton citizens residing in the Linden Heights and Walnut Hills neighborhoods. These drinking water fountains will provide safe drinking water for community members while also fostering a pride of place in their neighborhoods and promoting education on the Great Miami River watershed and Buried Valley Aquifer. This project will outline our community engagement principles, the planning process, project goals and outcomes, as well as include basic information on the Dayton watershed and parks in Dayton. We hope this presentation will start conversations about addressing aspects of inequity found in various Dayton parks, especially regarding access to drinking water fountains. Water is a fundamental necessity for life and it is important that all residents of the City of Dayton have access to clean, safe and fresh water as well as understand the significance of Dayton’s water resources.
Grant Alexander Dyer, Justin Gleason, Kyle Michael Harper, Mary E. Krooner
Roberson Law is in need of a new program that offers a variety of different features. These features include scheduling, messaging, appointment reminders and the ability to have all these aspects on your phone in a cell phone application. Currently, they use a system called Phoneslips to manage these aspects of their business. Roberson Law feels that this current system does not meet their needs anymore as they have grown their business tremendously. Our objective is to implement a new system that meets their needs of scheduling, messaging, reminders, and phone accessibility by April of 2022. Roberson Law would like to have an idea of what the solution will be by January of 2022 in the hopes that all their data will be able to transfer over to the new system.
Ajith Kumar Veeraboina
Additive manufacturing (AM) is popularly known as 3D printing. It is a technology that produces a physical part directly from its corresponding digital 3D model design. Printing parameters defined in the slicer software generate tool paths for each layer, and the printers deposit the materials on top of each layer to produce the 3D part. AM technology has been widely used in many fields for rapid prototyping. Technological advancements in AM have shifted its purpose to manufacturing. However, when compared to traditional manufacturing, AM is a slow process. So, printing process speed must be improved by developing new mechanisms and slicing algorithms. Such that model can be printed faster without sacrificing the surface quality. Additionally, the current 3D printers are based on a gantry system, so the models with overhanging elements require support structures. Printing the support and an actual part takes more time and material. Therefore, multi-direction slicing algorithms need to be developed, and to print in multi-direction without support structures; a higher degree of freedom system like industrial robotic arms are needed.
Role of M1BP, a transcriptional pausing transcription factor in JNK-mediated cell death during eye development
Anuradha Chimata Venkatakrishnan, Hannah paige Darnell
In all multicellular organisms, transcriptional regulation is crucial to regulate differential gene expression, which is important during development and growth. Transcriptional pausing is one such mechanism used to control gene expression. Recently, we have shown that M1BP, a transcriptional pausing transcription factor, promotes eye development by suppressing wingless (wg) expression. We also showed that M1BP regulates caspase-mediated cell death that is triggered by wg induction. M1BP is a functional homolog of ZKSCAN3, an autophagy repressor in humans. Jun-amino-terminal-(NH2)-Kinase (JNK) signaling is a pro-death pathway that is also known to activate caspase-mediated cell death. We hypothesized that M1BP could have a role in mediating cell death via JNK signaling during eye development. We used the Drosophila melanogaster model to study the role of JNK signaling during M1BP mediated eye suppression. Using the GAL4-UAS system, we modulated JNK signaling components along with downregulating M1BPRNAi. We present data that shows that the absence of M1BPRNAi results in activation of autophagic marker and JNK signaling. We show that activation of JNK signaling enhances M1BPRNAi phenotype and downregulation of JNK signaling rescues the M1BPRNAi phenotype of no eye. We also show that loss of M1BPRNAi in addition to blocking cell death and autophagy resulted in a rescue of the M1BPRNAi no eye phenotype.
Vijay Amir Gregory
Silicon (Si) integrated photonic devices have been the subject of much interest. However, the limitations of Si prevent it from being used as an efficient light source or detector. It has been shown that Ge with its indirect bandgap energy being close to the direct valley, can be band engineered to achieve optical gain by alloying it with Sn. However, the defect states that arise from the lattice mismatch between Ge and Sn can result in high dark current and low signal to noise ratio in detectors, as well as low gain in lasers. Currently, at AFRL, methods are being implemented to grow GeSn on Si with good crystal qualities. In this research, the optical properties of Ge and its alloys, GeSn are studied for different concentrations of Sn. The photoluminescence of bulk Ge and Ge_(1-x) Sn_x will be studied using a diffraction grating spectrometer and a 980nm pump laser. The results will show the benefits of the proposed growth techniques in producing high quality Ge_(1-x) Sn_x thin films that could lead to significant technological developments.
Brandon W. Bagley, Jeffrey Allen Banis, Caroline Lourdes Bechert, Alec Jon Biedenharn
Historical sales analysis and data visualization to identify potential cross service line sales and growth opportunities
Second Language Learning Motivation and Investment in Warscapes: A Case Study of Successful English Learners from Afghanistan
Brittany Noel Antoon
A significant body of scholarship exists on second language (L2) learning investment and strategies within the classroom, yet considerations for successful L2 learners in fragile contexts with limited formal education are conspicuously absent from literature. This article explores enabling factors of successful L2 learning in the particular warscape (Korf et al., 2010) of Afghanistan within the sociological framework of investment (Norton, 1995) and psychological framework of motivation (Garner & Lambert, 1972). The researcher surveyed and interviewed U.S.-based individuals from Afghanistan who acquired English proficiency there. Results indicate participants were able to overcome barriers to formal education through independent study and family advocacy and achieve high levels of proficiency despite little to no formal language instruction. The article discusses participants’ motivation and social positioning with respect to English language learning in light of Norton’s framework of investment, as well as possible implications for aid agencies serving regions in conflict.
Mira Brese Holifield, Catherine G. Landry, Juliana Marie Vollmer
Seed consumption by animals is an important source of energy in the food web, as well as a mechanism used by plants for dispersal. The goal of this study was to look at seed consumption by animals in the Dayton area such as birds and squirrels and see if the consumption is affected by human disturbance. The two different areas we focused on differed in the amount of daily human activity. The two locations were the Environmental Research Area and around the University of Dayton campus. The Environmental Research Area (ERA) was considered to be low-traffic, while the University of Dayton campus had high traffic. We selected five locations at each site and placed trays with a set number of sunflower seeds. Every couple days we counted the remaining seeds in the trays and then refilled them to determine the rate of seed consumption. Our preliminary results find that there is a general difference in rate of seed consumption between the high traffic and low traffic areas. Greater implications of these findings suggest that human activity can affect where local animals source their food.
Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) - non-structural protein 3 suppresses the pro-inflammatory cytokines in host cell
Ryan Jamison Nelson
Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) is an enveloped, single-stranded positive-sense RNA virus with genome size ~30 Kb. SARS-CoV-2 genome encodes 13–15 open reading frames (ORFs). Among them ORF1a encodes a non-structural protein 3 (Nsp3). Nsp3 is one of the largest proteins encoded by virus with an average molecular mass of about 200 kD. Nsp3 plays an important role in virus replication which includes creating virus replication/transcription complex and processing viral proteins. Nsp3 with papain-like protease activity cleave Nsp1-Nsp2, Nsp2-Nsp3 and Nsp3-Nsp4 in viral polypeptide. However, there is very little known about the role of Nsp3 on host innate immune response. To determine the role of SARS-Cov2- Nsp3 on host innate immune response, we transfected the HEK-293 Cell with plasmid containing SARS-CoV2-Nsp3 gene with green fluorescent protein (GFP). Transfected cells were analyzed for interleukin 6 (IL-6) and tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF alpha) expression. Our result showed that SARS-Cov2- Nsp3 significantly reduced IL-6 and TNF alpha expression, indicating the role of SARS-Cov2- Nsp3 in virus induced immunosuppression. However, we need to confirm our results with more replicates
Kara Joyce Shunnarah
Sport has historically been a male dominated area. Since the passage of Title XI in 1972, the opportunity for females to participate in sport has expanded. However, despite efforts towards inclusion within the sporting context, stereotypes and social expectations have remained present for female athletes. The present research study analyzes the experiences of collegiate female athletes with specific focus on female athlete sexualization through media representation and uniform dress. The study exhibits how sexualization in sport can affect the female athlete's athletic performance and perception of media coverage. Focus groups were conducted with female athletes at the University of Dayton. Qualitative results explore how female athletes balance the identity of being both a female and an athlete. Findings provide a deeper insight into the realities of a collegiate level female athlete, revealing both the changing and the stagnant socially constructed experiences within sport.
Claire Julia Rubadue, Justin George Supsura, Connor Joseph Williams, Michael Christian Zlotnik
Big Brothers Big Sisters of Butler County seeks to create one-on-one mentoring relationships between their volunteers and youth. Hailed as the oldest, largest, and most successful mentoring organization in the United States, Big Brothers Big Sisters can attribute most of their success to the personable relationships they maintain with everyone involved in the matchmaking process and data-driven philosophy.Despite their success, problems have persisted. While developing the relationship between volunteers and the youth is what BBBS does best, the arduous and slow matchmaking process is what is holding them back the most. All the blame cannot fall on BBBS, there is also a lack of cooperation from the families involved. The process begins with an introductory meeting between an employee, parent, and child, but “no-shows” are a huge problem. After the meeting, they must fill out an application on Matchforce (platform built on Salesforce) along with many legal documents. This management system isn’t being used to its full potential because it must be completed thoroughly (meaning you can’t move on to the next page of the application of any information is missing) and more training, post implementation, would’ve been beneficial.Our role in this project is to assist Big Brothers Big Sisters in reducing the time it takes to match the children with volunteers.
Six-Bar Linkage Models of a Recumbent Tricycle Mechanism to Increase Power Throughput in FES Cycling
Nicholas Andrew Lanese
This research presents the kinematic and static analysis of two mechanisms to improve power throughput for persons with tetra- or paraplegia pedaling a performance tricycle via FES. FES, or functional electrical stimulation, activates muscles by passing small electrical currents through the muscle creating a contraction. The use of FES can build muscle in patients, relieve soreness, and promote cardiovascular health. Compared to an able-bodied rider, a cyclist stimulated via FES produces an order of magnitude less power creating some notable pedaling difficulties especially pertaining to inactive zones. An inactive zone occurs when the leg position is unable to produce enough power to propel the tricycle via muscle stimulation. An inactive zone is typically present when one leg is fully bent, and the other leg is fully extended. Altering the motion of a cyclist’s legs relative to the crank position can potentially reduce inactive zones and increase power throughput. Some recently marketed bicycles showcase pedal mechanisms utilizing alternate leg motions. This work considers performance tricycle designs based on the Stephenson III and Watt II six-bar mechanisms where the legs define two of the system’s links. The architecture based on the Stephenson III is referred to throughout as the CDT due to the legs’ push acting to coupler-drive the four-bar component of the system. The architecture based on the Watt II is referred to throughout as the CRT due to the legs’ push acting to drive the rocker link of the four-bar component of the system. The unmodified or traditional recumbent tricycle (TRT) provides a benchmark by which the designs proposed herein may be evaluated. Using knee and hip torques and angular velocities consistent with a previous study, this numerical study using a quasi-static power model of the CRT suggests a roughly 60% increase and the CDT suggests roughly 100% increase for a typical FES cyclist.
Paige Leigh Russo
Social and emotional learning (SEL) considers students’ development as holistic individuals rather than only academic achievement. SEL competency should be a priority for elementary age students as they approach a crucial time of development. The support of schools, faculty, and community will ultimately impact the level of SEL competency achieved by elementary age students.
Dylan Matthew Beck
The goal of this project is to review how author and mathematician, Timothy Reluga has used game theory to come up with the best social distancing strategy in response to an epidemic. In his paper, “Game Theory of Social Distancing in Response to an Epidemic” Reluga makes some assumptions to make the problem simpler. This project will review Reluga’s methodology, results, and look at what effects these assumptions have.
Claudia Nicole Dominique
Mental health is one of the primary concerns on college campuses across the country, with a concerning number of students reporting mental distress. The COVID-19 pandemic only worsened this mental health crisis, resulting in a country-wide increase in mental health concerns. While the internet helped people stay in contact with one another, the increase in social media usage could have exacerbated college students’ existent mental distress. The broad goal of the current study is to highlight the relationship between social media usage and mental health among college students. In addition, the study also seeks to evaluate students’ self-reported changes in their mental health and social media usage as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. The current study utilized online surveys to collect data on individuals’ perceived impact of the pandemic on their social media behavior, and subsequently, their overall mental health. This research will contribute to our knowledge about mental health among college students by providing greater insight into the psychological state of students today, thus allowing future researchers to address the mental health concerns of those who have lived through a global pandemic.
Pepper Julia Cantwell, Olivia P. Fenner, Ellise K. Westerheide
With the knowledge of roads being a man-made structure that can have important ecological effects, we were interested in how these structures can affect root growth and soil characteristics. By measuring root growth, soil moisture, and pH at varying distances from a paved road, we can learn how anthropogenic factors affect soil. It’s important to address these scientific questions at this time of civilization because we are encroaching on natural resources now more than ever before. Using a soil coring method, we can test pH and soil moisture levels, as well as collect and record any root samples captured in each core. From past research, an ideal soil moisture for the type of soil we are testing would be between 10-18 percent and with a neutral pH of around 7. High root growth generally indicates a healthy system, so that would be ideal too. We expect to see the amount of root growth and moisture increase as we get further away from the road, as well as the ideal pH starting to appear as samples are taken away from the road.
Olivia Brady Canalizo
For my senior capstone project, I studied the mental health symptoms of prisoners who had experienced solitary confinement while incarcerated. Using a nationally representative data set that included the characteristics of thousands of prisoners, I was able to conduct my research by evaluating a variety of mental health issues such as nervousness, hopelessness, and depression while controlling for the inmate's sex, race, and age. Analyzing this data, I found that there is a significant correlation between inmates with mental health issues and those who have experienced solitary confinement.
Eloise Elizabeth Crane, Elizabeth M. Finnigan, Grace Marie Kennedy
Sororities and sorority life has blown up over the past decade. There are many social stigmas related to sororities and over the years, sororities have been depicted a lot differently than they are in reality. More specifically, a recent TikTok trend has gone viral of girls posting videos during their recruitment process of what they are wearing and where they purchased the items from. These videos, predominantly from the south, went viral as people started to mock them and send them to friends. The goal of this research study is to unravel the socialization influence sororities have and come to a consensus on how sororities are depicted in pop culture and why. This study advances theory since there are not many studies done on this particular topic. Sororities are organizations that everyone hears about but not many people are aware of what they are really about unless they are a member. The social stigma that sororities face are most commonly not accurately depicted, especially from movies and television shows.
Matthew J. Cummings
Over the summer of 2021, I (Matthew Cummings) and one other undergraduate student worked closely with an Assistant Professor and Graduate Researcher for the NSF-Simons Center for Quantitative Biology at Northwestern University. As a team, we extensively researched how manipulation of a set of partial differential equations could effect the reaction pathway for a set of chemical reactions (within a cell) involving 1,2-propendiol, propenaldehyde, and 1-proponal. Analyzing how manipulation could effect these reaction pathways has many applications that could be used in many industries, including cosmetic, perfume, air care, cleaning, and more. In my presentation, I will talk about our team's findings and how we came about them as well as these applications.
Rose C. Arkus
This research study focuses on exploring the challenges that speech therapists may face when interacting with parents of children who are receiving speech language therapy. The research works to explore the impact on the patient’s well-being. Some confounding impacts that will be explored through interviews include: the impact of social class, and accessibility to services. The results provide insight on the experience of navigating parental demands and child well-being within both schools and private centers in Ohio. This research is important to examine because it provides insight into gaps of literature and research for those who are practicing speech therapy and those who are receiving the therapy.
Elise Michelle Abshire
In this poster, I will be presenting research on the difference of direct and fair methods of coffee trading in light of Catholic Social Teaching. My proposition is that buying fair trade coffee beans is insufficient for respecting the inherent dignity of the human person, and direct trade must be the standard for any ethically conscious consumer. Throughout recent years, there has been an increasing ethical consciousness amongst universal consumers to buy more environmentally friendly, cage-free, and organic items. However, modern media fails to caution the ethical consumer about the importance of purchasing products that provide the greatest respect for the dignity of man, and the distinction between fair and direct trade provides insight on this issue. Fair trade was established in the 1980s as a way to ensure workers were being justly paid and living in proper conditions (Le and Janovokic, 2019). However, the issues of accountability and the middleman have been a hindrance in the effectiveness of fair trade. In contrast, direct trade means that coffee roasters are supplied directly from farmers without a middleman (Le and Janovokic, 2019). The Catholic Social Teaching principle of the sacredness of human life and the dignity of the human person was also examined with the consideration of Marianist Educational Values, especially education for justice. In conclusion, through knowing more about and utilizing direct trade, well-informed, ethical consumers can change lives. Finally, being informed ethical consumers should affect how we live out our daily lives on a Marianist campus, including how we source our coffee beans for our coffee shops.
Structure-function analysis of Defective proventriculus (Dve) in Drosophila melanogaster eye development
Anuradha Chimata Venkatakrishnan
Organ development is a highly regulated process to transform a monolayer organ primordium into a fully developed organ. Formation of morphogen gradient acts as critical cue to determine cell fate in developing tissues. In Drosophila melanogaster (Fruit fly), wingless (wg) morphogen acts as a negative regulator of eye development and wg gradient determines the eye vs. head fate. Previously, we have identified defective proventriculus (dve, an ortholog of SATB1) as a novel dorsal patterning gene that regulates transcription of wg morphogen. Axial patterning is required to establish Antero-posterior (AP), Dorso-Ventral (DV), and Proximo-Distal (PD) axes. Of the three axes, DV axis is the first lineage restriction event during eye development and any deviation results in developmental birth defects. In the dorsal gene hierarchy, dve acts downstream of GATA-1 transcription factor pannier (pnr) and upstream of wg. Loss-of-function of dve results in dorsal eye enlargement and increase in wg while gain-of-function results in eye suppression and reduced wg. In humans, SATB1 functions as a transcriptional regulator and chromatin organizer and requires tetramerization by the ULD domain. Furthermore, SATB1, the human ortholog of dve is highly upregulated in cancers. Here we have used the Drosophila eye model to understand the role of different Dve protein domains. We performed structure-function analysis of Dve protein to elucidate the role of various domains in regulating wg and eye development. We have developed several transgenic lines, which will allow us to induce expression of the specific domains of Dve protein and assay their effect in the eye. Dve has a ULD domain for tetramerization, HOX domains for DNA binding and PPP4R2 domain for H2AFX dephosphorylation. Here we present our results on ectopic induction of these domains and their effect on eye phenotype and wg expression in the developing eye.
Jamie Allison Burenga, Taylor Lou Flight, Sierrah Lorette Howard, Emily Elizabeth Hunt, Margaret Rachel Moore, Cameron Jacob Page, Jaylee A. Sowders
The music department presents performances by student performers in chamber music ensembles. These are intimate orchestrations that are composed for very few performers. We proudly present our student woodwind quintet performing Carl Nielsen's Woodwind Quintet, opus 43 and our student woodwind trio performing Francois Devienne's Trio in Bb, opus 61, #5.
Studying spatiotemporal gene expression in real time and lineage cells in Drosophila using G-Trace reporter system
Anuradha Chimata Venkatakrishnan, Imaan Jameel Khan
All multicellular organisms show strictly controlled transcriptional regulation that determines differential gene expression along the spatiotemporal axis. This dynamic spatiotemporal gene expression determines the variation in cellular structure and functions and also their interaction with other genes or proteins in cells. So far, GFP or LacZ based reporter systems have been widely utilized in Drosophila melanogaster to study such gene expression changes. Alternatively, antibody based immunohistochemical approach is also used to determine protein localization patter in tissues. But such approaches pose a challenge when studying transient or very early expression patterns. Therefore, we have utilized a genetic system that combines Gal4/UAS, FLP/FRT and fluorescent reporters to provide information about spatial, temporal, and lineage expression of genes. When crossed with a Gal4 stock, the Gal4 Technique for Real-time and Clonal Expression (G-TRACE) will reveal real time RFP expression, and ubiquitous lineage-traced GFP expression. Here, we utilize this method to study some of the genes that play an important role during eye development.