Jannat Ara

Hunter College
Graduation Status: 


I am a third-year Yalow undergraduate majoring in Biochemistry at CUNY Hunter College. I wish to obtain an Md/PhD degree and am interested in neurodegenerative diseases. I have always wondered how “ a three-pound mass of jelly that you can hold in your palm imagine angels, contemplate the meaning of infinity, and even question its own place in the cosmos?” Through this program I aim to dive deep into our brains and understand how it works. Currently in my first year of the program, I was lucky enough to work in two very different labs. At the University of Michigan, I was able to work in Dr. Gina Poe’s lab for a month where I studied sleep and memory. I studied the effects of REM sleep in PTSD rats and see how it affects memory consolidation of traumatic events. The second month, I worked in Dr. Vikram Shakkottai’s lab where I studied ataxic disorders. I researched if changes in ion channels affect the spiking of Purkinje cells in the cerebellum thus leading to motor impairment. In the fall, I plan to work with Dr. Pereira’s lab at Hunter College and research on the cause of Parkinson’s disease. I want to conduct research that advances medicine and benefits humanity but also experience the many fields of neuroscience. I aim to one day contribute to the growth and understanding of the neuroscience field.