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2005 RET Participant Jennifer Berry

Jennifer Berry
Stratford High School

Quantitative In vivo Retinal Imaging Lab - Professor Rick Haselton - Mentor: Patricia K. Russ PhD

For the Research Experience for Teachers program I worked on the linearity of dual tracer in vivo as used in age-related macular degeneration studies conducted by Dr. Russ and associates. I chose this area of study to adapt to my high school chemistry class.

This process involves the production of dual tracer and subsequent dilution to analyze the concentration curve and optimum fluorescence as described by linearity measurements. In order to generate the data, a mixture of sodium fluorescein (5mL) and Texas-Red dextran (100mL) is prepared and pipetted into 96 well plate.

Emission wavelengths are analyzed from well-plate photographs taken of each diluted tracer. This information is inserted in Microsoft Excel and graphed. This process was repeated several times to ensure validity of method and reliability of data. As well as trials that simulate actual rat injection concentrations.

My main focus of research involved production of the Texas Red dual tracer and analysis of the tracer using a fluorescence microscope varied filters, gain setting, and concentrations. All the information was graphed using Microsoft excel.

With the information gained from this analysis, it is the hope of Dr. Russ to include this information in a paper she is currently writing.

For the latter half of the program I worked on curriculum development. I worked on developing a mosaic based on the Legacy Cycle which expands and connects student understanding of both biology and chemistry. Students are asked to explore fluorescence and the electromagnetic spectrum through the human eye to solve a real world problem of macular degeneration.