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Three Earn Honors at Research Event


Three student researchers will be recognized as the best of the best at the annual celebration of student research at The University of Texas at Austin College of Pharmacy on Thursday, April 17.

Anyssa Garza, a student in the professional program; Piyunach Wonganan, a graduate student; and Darrel Hughes, a resident, were recognized for submitting the best abstracts among the 80 student abstracts submitted for this year's event. The posters will be on display between 1:30 and 3:30 p.m. under a tent located between the Molecular Biology Building and Anna Hiss Gymnasium.

In its fourth year, the event pays tribute to the research contributions of the college's professional degree students, graduate students and post-doctoral/residency students. In 2007, the event was officially named the Louis C. Littlefield Annual Celebrating Pharmacy Research Excellence Day to honor Littlefield, a former college administrator who established the celebration and served as its director for the first three years. Littlefield retired in August 2007.

Work by Anyssa Garza was cited for excellence among those submitted by professional students. Under the supervision of faculty member Dr. Rueben Gonzales, she submitted the poster, "Rat Placebo as the Basis for Further Investigation of Ethanol's Sensory Stimuli and Its Role in Correlation with the Accubens." Another collaborator on the project was Jennifer Carrillo.

Graduate student Piyunach Wonganan, working in the lab of Dr. Maria Croyle, was cited for the best abstract submitted by a graduate student. The title of the study is "Toxicology of Pegylated Helper-Dependent Adenovirus in Non-Human Primate."Additional collaborators include Eleanora Leggiero, Kathy Brasky, Courtney Clemens, Joe Dekker, Dalila Asatone, and Lucio Pastore.

The award for the best work by a student in the residency/postgraduate program went to Darrel Hughes working with Dr. Pamela Maxwell, Dr. Christopher Frei, and Dr. James Lewis. The study is titled, "Continuous vs Intermittent Infusion Oxacillin for the Treatment of Methicillin-Sensitive Staphylococcus Aureus Infective Endocarditis." Kay Green also collaborated in the study.

In addition to the research poster presentations, the day also will feature lectures by two nationally recognized researchers. The lectures will take place in room 3.106 of the South Pharmacy Building.

Dr. Courtney Fletcher, newly appointed dean at the University of Nebraska College of Pharmacy, will present the keynote address. Fletcher's address is scheduled for 10:30 a.m. His research focuses on treatment of viral infections in patients whose systems are immune compromised. He currently is principal investigator on three NIH grants from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases. One grant focuses on the study of concentration-controlled antiretroviral therapy while the others provide funding for adult and pediatric AIDS pharmacology laboratories. Fletcher's address is scheduled for 10:30 a.m. in room 3.106 of the South Pharmacy Building.

Dr. Walt Fast, assistant professor of medicinal chemistry at the UT College of Pharmacy, will present the distinguished faculty seminar. Fast and members of his research team are part of a group of biomedical researchers that has determined the first 3-dimensional structure of a enzyme that may be critical in preventing certain bacterial infections in plants, animals and humans. Fast's address begins at 11:45 a.m. also in room 3.106.

At 12:30 p.m. also in room 3.106, students will present oral summaries of three research posters judged to be the best in each academic category-- professional program, graduate program, and post doctoral/residency program.

All Celebrating Research Day events are free and open to the public.

Last Reviewed: April 15, 2008

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