Hello! My name is Yuna Kim and I will be a senior Neuroscience major. I joined the Tetel lab during Fall 2012 of my sophomore year and have since been working with Liz Bless on studying the interaction between estrogen and leptin systems in the female adult mouse hypothalamus. Leptin activates a transcription factor STAT3 by phosphorylation, yielding phosphorylated STAT3 (pSTAT3). We want to determine if pSTAT3 directly interacts with estrogen receptor (ER) and we plan on investigating this interaction utilizing a pull-down assay.
During the summer of 2012, I had the opportunity to intern in a neurobiology lab at UC Irvine School of Medicine, where the main focus was on local connectivity and in vivo physiology of inhibitory neurons in the cortex. We were able to investigate cortical connections through monosynaptic circuit tracing through Cre-dependent targeting and injection of a modified rabies virus. During my time here, I was able to learn experimental techniques and procedures that I found useful for my research in the Tetel lab.
As for the future, I hope to continue researching long after graduating from Wellesley.