Alice Tarun

Profile

  • Time Zone
    Eastern

  • Organization
    Alfred State College SUNY

  • Role
    Scientist Mentor: I will mentor teams of students online

  • Research Interests (300 words)
    My training in molecular biology and biochemistry has immersed me in research in understanding how the structure and nature of genes, proteins and biochemical pathways have profound effects on the functioning of organisms and the deep realization that while the underlying basis of these molecules and interactions are the same, the resulting myriad effects are unique to each organism. My research interests have evolved from focusing on a particular enzyme (ACC synthase, a key enzyme in the synthesis of the plant hormone ethylene which is important for activities such as ripening of fruits) or pathway (sulfur/selenium metabolic and volatilization pathway in plants and bacteria) into a more systems biology approach to gain understanding of the host-pathogen biology of the malaria liver stage parasite. In addition to my interest in functional genomics and host-pathogen interactions, I am also interested in metagenomics to study and characterize microbial populations in particular environments.

  • Profile Question 1
    Can you describe your attitude toward science when you were in high school?

  • Answer the question you selected for profile question 1 here (300 words):
    I went to a science high school where we had science labs in Chemistry, Physics and Biology every year and where we were expected to participate in a science fair each year. Fortunately I loved science so science never became tedious for me. I actually revelled in being immersed in science classes and found my humanities classes more challenging than my science classes.

  • Profile Question 2
    When and why did you decide to go into a science career?

  • Answer the question you selected for profile question 2 here (300 words):
    I was fortunate in that I realized very early in high school that I wanted to be a biologist and in particular I wanted to go into the field of Genetics. The field of genetic engineering was just starting to take off and I was fascinated with the power and possibilities that this technology can bring. Biology is an amazing field of science bacause what you learn results in more understanding of your self and how your body functions.

  • Profile Question 3
    What is best about being a scientist?

  • Answer the question you selected for profile question 3 here (300 words):
    As a scientist you never stop learning. I decided to be a scientist and a teacher because I love to learn. I realized early on that I could be a perpetual student and be in the university forever because of of this love for learning. To quote Albert Einstein.."once you stop learning, you start dying".

  • Help represent the outreach efforts of your societies. Please click all those organizations you are a member of:
    American Society of Microbiology

  • Availability
    I am currently available for mentoring, please send me team match invitations

  • Preferred Investigation Themes Copy
    The Wonder of Seeds (seed germination and growth)
    What about Pollen? (pollen and pollination)
    Celery Challenge (plant anatomy, osmosis and diffusion)
    C-Fern in the Open (sexual reproduction, alternation of generations)
    Agronomy Feeds the World (where does food come from?)

  • Capacity: How many teams at a time are you comfortable working with?
    2

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