VERMILLION — Five University of South Dakota Center for Brain and Behavior Research (CBBRe) students were accepted to present their research at the Faculty for Undergraduate Neuroscience (FUN) Conference session that took place at the annual Society for Neuroscience Conference (SfN) in Chicago Oct. 19-23.

The students who were accepted to present included:

• Brittany Bamberg, a junior medical biology major from Corsica;

• Carly Cooper, a sophomore medical biology from Spearfish;

• Rachel Rucker a sophomore chemistry and medical biology major from Yankton;

• Conrad MohrEymer a senior chemistry major from Reliance;

• Madeleine Nelson a junior medical biology major from Sioux Falls.

Bamberg presented the research she completed under the mentorship of William Mayhan, Ph.D., “The Effects of In Utero Exposure to Alcohol,” after being accepted as a recipient of the Summer Program for Undergraduate Research in Addiction (SPURA) award. Following graduation, Bamberg plans to enter the Sanford School of Medicine through the medical alumni scholarship and pursue a degree in medicine.

Cooper is a recipient of a SPURA award and has been working with Lee Baugh, Ph.D., on her project, “The Rhythm of the Night: An Examination of the Role of the Human Circadian System on Decision Making and Motor Performance.” Cooper is also a Certified Nurse’s Assistant and has experience providing care for mentally impaired residents, including those with dementia, brain trauma and age-related diseases.

MohrEymer is a medical alumni scholar and SPURA awardee. He has been working with Baugh analyzing fMRI data for his project, “Time for a change? Brain Activity and Behavioral Performance Reveal Different Dynamics at Short, Intermediate, and Long Delay Intervals During a Delay Discounting Task.” MohrEymer has presented his work at local symposiums, and he completed a preceptorship at the Vermillion Hospital.

Rucker is a National Goldwater Scholarship recipient as well as a UDiscover recipient with Brian Burrell, Ph.D. She presented her research, “Diacylglycerol Lipase: Does Mutation of the Catalytic Region Influence Membrane Localization?” at the conference. Rucker plans to pursue a career in translational research on pain systems.

Nelson presented her research, “Mechanisms of Cardiovascular Responses to Synthetic Cannabinoids,” she completed under the mentorship of Dr. Doug Martin after being accepted as a recipient of the SPURA award. Nelson hopes to attend the Sanford School of Medicine and pursue a degree in medicine. Madeleine also serves as the Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF)/Doctors Without Borders — USD chapter President.

SfN, founded in 1969, seeks to promote scientific discovery and education in the field of neuroscience, and it now has over 37,000 members in more than 95 countries. FUN’s mission is to enhance undergraduate participation in research and recognize excellence in neuroscience education.

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