St. John’s University Science Honors Program for High School
Welcome to the St. John’s University Science Honors Program for
High School Students 2012‐2013! This
Program has been designed to give motivated and academically
talented high school students an
opportunity to complement their high school studies by attending
lectures given by St. John’s University
professors. There is no cost for this program.
At the end of the Program (April 2013), students who attend all
lectures will receive a certificate from St.
John’s University stating that they participated in this Honors
All classes will meet at St. John’s University, St. Albert Hall
B‐70, from 10 am to 12 pm.
January 19, 2013
Dr. Ales Vancura: Professor and Chair of the
Introduction to Biochemistry and Cancer Research
February 2, 2013
Dr. Simon Moller: Professor of Cell Biology
Introduction to Cell Biology and Neurodegenerative Disease
March 2, 2013
Dr. Yong Yu: Professor of Neuroscience
Introduction to Neuroscience
April 6, 2013
Dr. Ivana Vancurova: Professor of Immunology
Introduction to Immunology and Inflammation Research
BIOS OF THE INSTRUCTORS
Dr. Ales Vancura is a Professor of Biochemistry
and Chair of the Biology Department at St. John’s
University. His research focuses on the role of intermediary
metabolism in histone acetylation and
transcriptional regulation, as it relates to cell proliferation,
differentiation and survival. His research has
been published in over 50 research articles, and has been funded by
American Cancer Society and by the
National Institutes of Health. At St. John’s University, Dr.
Vancura teaches undergraduate and graduate
Biochemistry. In his presentation, Dr. Vancura will introduce basic
concepts in Biochemistry and cancer
research. He will also talk about the Biology Department of St.
John’s University, and if time allows, he
will give a tour of the Biology Department.
Dr. Simon Moller is a Professor of Cell Biology at
St. John’s University, and he holds a Professor II
appointment at Centre for Organelle Research at the University of
Stavanger and at The Norwegian
Centre for Movement Disorders at Stavanger University Hospital in
Norway. He is also Chief Scientific
Officer at the biotechnology company Plastid AS. Dr Moller is
primarily interested in neurodegenerative
diseases, such as Parkinson's disease, and how different model
systems can be used to study the onset
and progression of these devastating disorders. In addition, Dr
Moller is interested in how to make use
of plants for the production of commercially valuable products such
as viral antigens.
Dr. Yong Yu is an Assistant Professor in the
Department of Biological Sciences at St. John’s University.
came to St. John’s University from Columbia University, where he
studied molecular and cellular
physiology and neurobiology, especially structure and function of
cell membrane protein ion channels
and the molecular mechanisms of human diseases that are caused by
malfunction of ion channels.
Currently, Dr. Yu investigates the transient receptor potential
(TRP) family channels and their roles in
diseases such a polycystic kidney disease. In his presentation, Dr.
Yu will introduce the basic concepts of
neuroscience, and he will discuss various combined molecular
biology, biochemistry, biophysics,
electrophysiology, crystallography and computation approaches he
uses for his research.
Dr. Ivana Vancurova is a Professor of Immunology
at the Biology Department of St. John’s University.
Her research focuses on the transcriptional regulation of
pro‐inflammatory and anti‐apoptotic genes in
human leukocytes, as it relates to inflammatory disorders as well
as some forms of cancer and leukemia.
Her research has been published in over 45 research articles, and
has been funded by the National
Institutes of Health. At St. John’s University, Dr. Vancurova
teaches undergraduate and graduate
Immunology. In her presentation, Dr. Vancurova will introduce the
basic concepts in Immunology, and
she will discuss the molecular mechanisms of chronic inflammatory
disorders, such as chronic lung
disease, asthma, or arthritis.