Now showing items 1-20 of 380

    • An Investigation of TbLpn Methylation in Trypanosoma brucei

      Raichel, Alyssa (SUNY Brockport, Honors College, 2019-04)
      Human African trypanosomiasis (HAT), more commonly referred to as African Sleeping Sickness, is a disease transmitted through the bite of an infected tsetse fly harboring the human pathogenic parasite, Trypanosoma brucei, a hemoflagellate of the taxonomic class Kinetoplastea. The disease impacts primarily populations of sub-Saharan Africa, and exists in two primary stages: the bloodstream and the central nervous system (CNS) stage. In the first stage, T. brucei will migrate through the lymph and blood, continually proliferating and causing unspecific signs and symptoms. Over time, the parasite will penetrate the blood-brain barrier and migrate to the central nervous system, where various neurological disturbances can occur, greatly increasing the severity of the disease. It is at this stage that the disease becomes difficult to treat, as antibodies that circulate the body can no longer reach the parasite, and the brain immune response is less efficient than other immune responses within the body. However, early intervention is also difficult, due to the lack of specific signs or symptoms present during the bloodstream stage of the disease. In the event of early diagnosis of HAT, the drugs that are currently available for treatment will likely cause negative side effects. Vaccination is also not possible due to the trypanosome's antigenic variation, which allows the T. brucei to successfully elude the host’s immune responses through their expression of the variant surface glycoproteins (VSGs). VSGs cover the Trypanosoma cell with a frequently-changing “protective coat,” allowing the parasite to avoid detection by host antibodies. Five Protein Arginine Methyltransferase enzymes (PRMTs) are also found in T. brucei, which suggests that arginine methylation plays a predominant role in the parasite’s life cycle. PRMTs have been shown to interact with a trypanosome homologue of lipin, termed TbLpn, which acts as phosphatidate phosphatase (PAP) enzyme, and actively converts phosphatidate to diacylglycerol (DAG) during the synthesis of triacylglycerol (TAG), phosphatidylcholine (PC), and phosphatidylethanolamine (PE). PE is particularly important in T. brucei’s synthesis of glycosylphosphatidylinositol (GPI), which is utilized to anchor VSGs and give the parasite its ability to evade the immune system through antigenic variation. TbLpn is the only phosphatidic acid phosphatase known to date to exhibit arginine methylation. One of the main objectives of this project was to confirm the importance of TbLpn, and to verify that it is the major enzyme responsible for the dephosphorylation of phosphatidic acid in T. brucei. To determine this, a phosphatidic acid phosphatase (PAP) assay was performed, and the results showed that that the wild type TbLpn produced 48.05 (± 26.09) nmol of phosphate per minute per mg of protein, whereas the TbLpn-depleted cells produced only 21.96 (± 14.59) nmol Pi/min/mg. These results confirmed the importance of TbLpn for the dephosphorylation of phosphatidic acid, and its effect on enzymatic activity in T. brucei, as the cells with trace amounts of TbLpn displayed significantly less activity. The other main objective of this experiment was to determine the effect of TbLpn methylation by TbPRMT7 on its enzymatic activity. Following an additional PAP assay, the phosphatase activity of wild type TbPRMT7 T. brucei cells was compared to that of TbPRMT7- depleted cells, and the effect of methylation on TbPRMT7 PAP activity was deemed insignificant, with minimal difference in measured enzymatic activity. It can therefore be concluded that the methylation of TbPRMT7 is not important for the enzymatic activity of TbLpn. However, it cannot be confirmed from these results that TbPRMT7 methylation plays no role in Trypanosoma brucei. Further experiments must be conducted to determine what role arginine methylation has on TbLpn enzymatic activity.
    • Examining the Health Disparities in African American Women in the United States

      Lowey, Susan; Winbush, Madison (SUNY Brockport, Honors College, 2022-05)
      African American women make up seven percent of the United States population and on average are younger, 36.1 years, than U.S women overall, 39.6 years (Carter et al., 2019). Despite this data Black women have a higher prevalence of heart disease, stroke, cancers, diabetes, maternal morbidities, obesity, and stress (Chinn, 2021). Infant mortality data in this country is also alarming with statistics showing that the rate for children born to Black mothers is twice as high as children born to white mothers (Chinn, 2021). This data is extremely concerning, especially considering these statistics are taken from an industrial, high income earning, western nation. (from Introduction)
    • Art Therapy and Autism: Communication Pathways

      Wildridge, Christina (SUNY Brockport, Honors College, 2020-05)
      Research has been increasing in the psychology world on using art therapy as an effective method for improving the communication skills for children with Autism (Gazeas, 2012, p.16). Using this research and my own experience I created a gallery of art based on personal experience and artistic tools based on research for working with individuals with Autism. My gallery works show what I have discovered and developed while reading the research papers of psychologists. The thesis contributes a fraction of the view on art therapy and how it works with Autism.
    • “STOP” Study, Sanitize to Omit Pathogens

      Wasson, Emma Willow (SUNY Brockport, Honors College, 2022-05)
      We are currently living in the age of pandemic, as covid 19 has swept the globe and continues to be an issue to at-risk populations. We, as a society, have had to shift our focus from aggressive treatment of disease toward preventative measures. The objective of our research study was to evaluate the behavior of nursing students in 2019, which would go on to include the graduating classes of 2019 and 2020. Here at SUNY Brockport, nursing students are taught a recommended standard of cleaning their stethoscope with ethanol between every patient to prevent secondary infection from occurring through exposure caused by a contaminated stethoscope. In order to assess whether those measures were carefully followed, we sampled the stethoscopes of 117 students, and evaluated for bacterial growth on three separate solid media meant to encourage growth of distinct groups of bacteria. The identity of the isolated bacteria was also confirmed by staining and microscopic observation. Bacterial contamination was found at all four culture sites with the majority found on the earpieces, and the tubing. Staphylococcus/Micrococcus contamination was found most often on the diaphragm. Fecal contamination was also most commonly found on the diaphragm when compared to other portions of the stethoscope. Interestingly, the graduate students had the least amount of contamination while the accelerated students had the most.
    • Using problem-based approaches with open questions in the Elementary Education Classroom

      Ulp, Kellie (SUNY Brockport, Honors College, 2020-12)
      Best practices for educating in the elementary classroom were the main concern for this paper. I sought to find the most effective strategies that will allow students to develop the highest degree of meaning associated with the learning targets for the students. Upon research, I found that problem-based lessons provided students with an opportunity to engage with the material in a way that they will conceptually understand. A deeper conceptual understanding leads to higher quality of understanding, application and creation. Students would also encounter real-world problems. Concepts are introduced with real situations that can happen, and the student is asked to think about how to solve the problem. This is a much different approach than the method I have seen most frequently in the classroom: lecture, model, and students copy your model. In these situations, students do not have the freedom to explore and manipulate in ways that seem fitting to them. Students who have teachers that use problem-based and open practices will connect deeper to the content. They will be able to solve problems, create problems and create solutions.
    • The Behavior of Water in Monodisperse Polyethylene Glycols Determined by Molecular Dynamic Simulations

      Too, Matthew D. (SUNY Brockport, Honors College, 2021-12)
      A molecular dynamics simulation study is presented for mixture systems containing either di-, tetra-, or pentaethylene glycol and 20,000 parts per million (ppm) of water in the determination of whether water clusters or bridging hydrogen bonds form in such systems. An analysis of the validity of the all-atom Optimized Potential for Liquid Simulations (OPLS/AA) force field utilized for the polyethylene glycols (PEGs) is also presented. Results from densities, self-diffusion coefficients, hydrogen bonding numbers, radial distribution functions, and simulation trajectory snapshots revealed that water formed bridging hydrogen bonds rather than clustered aggregates, thereby acting as a glue between the PEG molecules and causing extensive structuring and a slowdown in the system dynamics. The role of PEG-PEG cross-links and hydrogen bonding between hydroxyl groups and water in reducing water movement was proposed to be the basis for the formation of water bridges rather than clusters. Densities were reproduced well by the OPLS/AA force field, although self-diffusion coefficients and shear viscosities were severely underestimated and overestimated, respectively. Despite the poor reproduction of PEG dynamical properties by the force field, simulations were found to follow Stokes-Einstein behavior, suggesting that a significant reparameterization of the OPLS/AA force field for PEGs is needed.
    • Examining Risk Perceptions Related to E-cigarette and Vaping Use in College Students

      Slovic, Micaela L. (SUNY Brockport, Honors College, 2020-05)
      Vaping and e-cigarette use have become a public health issue in the United States that is affecting an increasing number of young people. E-cigarettes/vapes contain a number of pneumotoxic substances that can have detrimental effects on health, and the high nicotine content amongst popular brands can further addiction. The purpose of this study was to examine the patterns of vaping and e-cigarette use amongst college students as well as student’s perceptions of risk regarding e-cigarettes/vapes. A sample of 55 (n=55) college students enrolled in Academic Planning Seminar (APS) classes were recruited and asked to complete an online survey. There was no significance between gender and use, and the sample was not large enough to determine significance based on other demographics, such as race, income level, and living situation. The results of this study found 50.91% of participants reported ever using ecigarettes/ vapes, while 49.09% denied using e-cigarettes/vapes. Furthermore, 94.55% of students had not received counseling or advice from a health professional concerning e-cigarettes or vaping. These statistics outline a deficit in patient education in a population that has a significant percentage of e-cigarettes/vaping users. This population may greatly benefit from residential programs addressing the dangers of use and education about e-cigarettes/vapes from a health care setting.
    • The Relation Between Interest-based Teaching Practices and Student Performance in The High School Mathematics Classroom

      Sherwood, Morgan (SUNY Brockport, Honors College, 2020-12)
      This study consists of a survey that was administered online to students at the State University of New York (SUNY) Brockport in the Fall 2020 semester. Participants were recruited from a variety of academic disciplines in reference to their high school mathematics experiences. The survey was broken up into two sections. The first section asked about the mathematics class that they received the highest grade in, and the second section asked about the mathematics class they received the lowest grade in. By asking the same questions across these two sections we were able to compare which teaching practices mathematics teachers employed that had a higher impact on student performance. It was found that interest-based teaching practices in the categories of Classroom Discussions, The Learning Environment, Connections to Everyday Life, and Presentation of Topics had statistically significant differences in the mean responses of participants. The implementation of these interest-based teaching practices may lead to an increase in student performance.
    • The Shoe That Broke Running

      Pell, Eleanor (SUNY Brockport, Honors College, 2022-04)
      The sport of running is attractive because it is mostly free, and it simple to partake in. Put on your shoes and head out the door, nothing too scientific about it. Additionally, as individuals get more involved in the running scene and starts to gain more experience, they may find out that there is a surprising amount of science involved including things one can manipulate to make themselves better.
    • Development of a monolithically 3D printed reciprocating piston pump for HPLC

      Palmowski, Megan (SUNY Brockport, Honors College, 2020-05)
      There has been much research in recent years aiming to make scientific instrumentation more accessible. An increase in accessibility has many benefits including reduced costs and expanded opportunities to learn about instrumentation. 3D printing of scientific instrumentation provides an option that is cheap and customizable. This study follows the development of a 3D-printed ball check valve to be implemented in a reciprocating piston pump such as one used for high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC). The reciprocating piston pump is just one of several types of positive displacement pumps. Seven types of positive displacement pumps will be described, as well as some unexpected applications in the sciences or every day life. The valve designed in this study was designed using OpenSCAD and printed using a Prusa i3 MK2S 3D printer. Ball check valves with both a spherical and conical design were designed, and early qualitative tests point towards the conical design being desirable. Future work includes the design of a reciprocating piston, the implementation of the piston along with two check valves to create a complete reciprocating pump, and quantifying pressures achieved by the pump.
    • A Literature Review of Aromatherapy for the Mental Wellbeing of Nurses

      Naldrett, Kelsie (SUNY Brockport, Honors College, 2022-05)
      Nurses experience many stressors as a result of their work demands and environment. Psychological morbidity in nurses is a concern that rises in importance, especially in the wake of the Coronavirus Disease Pandemic. This Research investigates the efficacy of essential oil aromatherapy as a treatment option for relieving psychological distress among nurses.
    • Shift Your Mind -- a Mental Health App

      Miller, Jenna (SUNY Brockport, Honors College, 2022-05)
      This paper is a literature review about the new and upcoming world of mental health apps. Our current world is surrounded by mental health challenges, many of which are being heightened because o the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. As many would say, our world is in a mental health crisis. Yet, we do not have the readily available resources to handle it. There are numerous barriers to mental health care including financial challenges, lack of insurance, social stigmas, underreporting symptoms, lack of accessibility, transportation issues, the list continues. This leaves so many people without services. Getting access to mental health care has become a privilege rather than a right. But with our lives revolving around technology, we are now seeing a way to get around these barriers, mental health apps. To establish whether or not mental health apps are truly beneficial to the users we have to delve into dissecting the apps available to the public. These mental health apps allow users to access an aspect on mental health care from their fingertips, they empower the user and allow self-determination in the user's care, and it can be a steppingstone to further mental health interventions. But many of these benefits are outweighed by the limitations. Some limitations include that many of these apps are not created by mental health professionals, they lack consistency in engagement abilities, they are not evidence based or tested properly, and most are not regulated. This research has given us the ability to find what necessary aspects are needed for a mental health app. These aspects include, 1) being cognitively based, 2) made for everyone, 3) contain aspects to report thoughts, feelings and behaviors, 4) reminders, 5) recommended activities, 6)links to crisis support and mental health providers, 7)gamifications, 8)guaranteeing the app is evidence based and experimentally tested for efficacy. There is a growing demand for mental health apps that are beneficial to many users and are accessible to all. If we aren't able to lessen the barriers to care, we need to become creative and proactive in how we deliver services. Not everyone may be able to have access to in-person care, but they more than likely can have access to a mental health app.
    • Registered Nurses’ Experience of Perceived Stressors Based on Specialty – A Comparison of Stressors’ Frequency and Impact Across Hospital Units

      McLennan, Kiley (SUNY Brockport, Honors College, 2022-05)
      While all nurses strive to provide the best nursing care to their patients regardless of unit or specialty, the overall experience of nurses can vary greatly depending on which patient population they are working with and the unique care of specific diagnoses. This study aimed to explore how nurses experience stressors differently depending on their specialty, specifically in terms of how frequently stressors and experienced and the impact these stressors have on them. A survey was created and electronically promoted to nurses through social media sources, such as Facebook. Demographic information was collected in addition to the frequency, impact, and duration of impact of various stressors that may be experienced in nursing practice were assessed. The results of this study suggest that nurses do report varying experiences with stressors relating to patient care and stressors relating to interactions with patients and their families. Additionally, there may be certain types of units that experience stressors at a greater frequency overall, such as the intensive care unit (ICU), or certain types that experience stressors at a lesser frequency overall, such as obstetrics and gynecology (OBGYN) and Maternity.
    • Mediate Perception and the Likeness Principles: George Berkeley’s Refutation of the Indirect Realist Theory of Perception

      Long, Joseph; McKay, Nathan Thomas (SUNY Brockport, Honors College, 2022-05)
      Scholars note that George Berkeley makes two arguments from the likeness principle in his polemic against a resemblance-based theory of indirect realism (RIR, henceforth).1 Indirect realism is the theory of perception according to which veridical perception is an immediate perceptual awareness of sense data, which are wholly phenomenal, mental qualities with representative content that gives us mediate perceptual access to material objects.2 RIR is the conjunction of indirect realism and the claim that sense data represent material objects insofar as they resemble one another.3 The first version of the likeness principle is characterized by the claim that ‘an idea can be like nothing but an idea’ (LP1, henceforth), and the second by the claim that ‘something sensible cannot be like something insensible’ (LP2, henceforth). The standard interpretation of Berkeley’s intent for the argument from LP1 is to show that RIR is by necessity false. If material objects are not ideas, and if only ideas can resemble ideas, then ideas cannot resemble material objects, and resultantly RIR must be false. The standard interpretation of Berkeley’s intent for the argument from LP2 is also to show that RIR is by necessity false. If material objects are not sensible, then they cannot resemble ideas, which are by their nature sensible, and resultantly RIR must be false. (From Introduction)
    • The Significance of the MICOS Protein Complex on Maintaining the Function of Cellular Respiration is Saccharomyces cerevisiae

      LaCoss (SUNY Brockport, Honors College, 2020-05)
      The mitochondria are essential organelles to the survival of cells due to their important role in cellular respiration. Mitochondria have their own set of DNA (mtDNA), which encodes proteins needed for the execution of successful oxidative phosphorylation. One of these gene complexes, known as the MICOS complex, contains six genes and is responsible for encoding proteins needed for the maintenance of the inner architecture of the organelle (1). Oxidative phosphorylation is only possible due to the proton gradient that is produced across the inner mitochondrial membrane. The MICOS gene complex encodes proteins that facilitate the building of the inner membrane of the mitochondria, as well as the cristae junctions, which are required for a sufficient rate of cellular respiration. While it has been shown that other mitochondrial genes contribute to the integrity of the mtDNA, there is little research about the contribution of the MICOS complex to the integrity of the mtDNA. The lab has developed a set of mutant strains that each represent a single gene knockout from the MICOS complex. Specifically, the mic19Δ mutant strain will be compared against the wild type strain, MIC19, in a respiration loss assay to develop an understanding of the significance of the MICOS complex on cellular respiration. Rich growth media containing dextrose and raffinose as the carbon sources were used to monitor spontaneous respiration loss in both the MIC19 and mic19Δ strains. When plated using dextrose as the sole carbon source after growth on glycerol media, the mic19Δ strain demonstrated an increase in cellular respiration loss compared to that of the wild type. When plated using raffinose as the sole carbon source after growth on glycerol media, the mic19Δ strain again demonstrated an increase in cellular respiration loss compared to that of the wild type. This shows that Mic19p plays a significant role in maintaining a functional mitochondrion.
    • Thermophysical Properties of the Green Solvent Polyethylene Glycol

      Kealy, Joseph (SUNY Brockport, Honors College, 2021-12)
      Environmental concerns are a continuous topic of interest for research in all commercial, industrial, and research fields. Ways to stay environmentally friendly without compromising cost and efficiency are constantly under investigation, especially in the field of chemical synthesis and processing. Interest in environmental conservation and protection in the field of chemistry has led to the creation of organizations such as the Green Chemistry Institute and programs such as the Pollution Prevention Program that promote and support research on environmentally friendly chemistry. There is a significant incentive for research on potential “green solvents,” headed by the research initiative of the Green Chemistry Program (established 1991) in the United States. Currently accepted green solvents, where “green” refers to products that reduce or eliminate the production and usage of hazardous materials, include water, supercritical carbon dioxide, and ionic liquids.1 However, the widespread implementation of a green solvent requires other notable considerations aside from its environmentally friendly properties. (from Introduction)
    • The Impact of Cannabis on Mental Health Disorders: A Literature Review

      Hunt, Cecelia (SUNY Brockport, Honors College, 2022-04)
      The topic of cannabis has been a taboo subject since the War on Drugs began decades ago. The use of cannabis in the medical setting has become more and more prominent, as it has been found to have multiple helpful properties. Cannabis is also known as marijuana and these two terms may be used interchangeably throughout this paper. There are two components in cannabis that may be mentioned throughout this literature review. Delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) is considered the psychoactive component, while Cannobidiol (CBD) is nonpsychoactive. Psychoactive substances are things that affect brain function and cause changes in mood, thoughts, and behaviors (National Institute, n.d). Although the research is limited, marijuana has been found to help people who are diagnosed with epilepsy, as well as people who suffer from chronic pain (Safakish et al., 2020).
    • Parenting, Marijuana Motivations, and Health Behaviors study

      Halter, Nathan (SUNY Brockport, Honors College, 2019-12)
      The annual prevalence for marijuana use among college students was 38% in 2017 (Schulenberg, Johnston, O'Malley, Bachman, Miech, & Patrick, 2018), with annual rates of use increasing by 14% over the past 10 years. A study looking at the current science related to the negative health effects of marijuana found that some long-term effects are increased likelihood of dropping out of school, lower IQ, and lower life satisfaction and achievement. These were also all strongly related with starting to use marijuana in early adolescence (Volkow, Baler, Compton, & Weissc 2014). (from Introduction)
    • Infant Mortality in the United States and Its Correlation to Healthcare Access

      Hakes, Taiya (SUNY Brockport, Honors College, 2022-05)
      Introduction: Infant Mortality is a continuing problem in the United States of America. Multiple different factors play a contributing role in the risk of experiencing infant mortality. Infant mortality has been found to have a strong correlation with race and socioeconomic status. Objective: The objective of this research is to look at the different demographics that increase risk of infant mortality and see if there is a specific factor that is contributing to the United States having such a high infant mortality rate. Methods: A literature review was conducted for this undergraduate scholarly research project. Multiple different studies and their results were analyzed, in turn tying them together to compare, show correlation, and form a conclusion. Conclusion: In conclusion, there is no one demographic that is the leading contributor to high infant mortality rates in the United States. Demographics that were researched included race, location, socioeconomic status, and the labor and delivery aspect of a pregnancy. It was concluded that no singular demographic was the leading contributor to infant mortality. Rather, it was found that all of these demographics are connected, and it is a larger systemic issue.
    • Harry Potter In The 4th Grade Classroom

      Guthrie, Kilauren R. Avery (SUNY Brockport, Honors College, 2020-09)
      The following is an Honors Thesis project completed in my final year at SUNY Brockport. I used the knowledge and understandings gained through my coursework completed for the Arts for Children major, Literary Arts focus; and Childhood Inclusive Education Certification Program to create a fourth grade English Language Arts unit plan with a focus on social emotional learning utilizing J. K. Rowling’s young adult novel, Harry Potter and The Sorcerer’s Stone (Rowling, 1997). The project includes a review of current literature related to Rowling’s text, elementary education and social emotional education; a Backward Design (Bowen, 2017) unit planning document; three lesson plans written in the EdTPA format; and a Unit Planning Commentary.