Scientific Investigation: Basic Sciences Scholarship Track

Basic Sciences Scholarship Track Overview

The Basic Science Scholarship Track is a component of the Scientific Investigation Track of the Scholarship & Discovery program. Basic Science encompasses research that investigates core scientific concepts and pathways, and often utilizes animals, cell lines, or tissues. This type of research allows one to take a clinically relevant question and investigate causation and underlying mechanisms in a controlled system. The Basic Science Track provides students with an opportunity to be mentored by one of the many investigators in the University of Chicago Biological Sciences Division and develop a focused project for which the student can take ownership.  Projects are designed individually to match the skills, interests, and time frame available to the student.


Meet the Track Leaders

Dr. Erika Claud, MD

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Dr. Claud is Associate Professor of Pediatrics and a pediatric gastroenterologist at the University of Chicago Medicine Comer Children's Hospital. Her research focus is on the investigation of cellular and molecular mechanisms that underpin interstitial inflammation in the immature intestine.

Ronald Cohen, MD

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Dr. Cohen is Associate Professor of Medicine in the Section of Endocrinology, Diabetes, and Metabolism. His research focus is on the role of nuclear receptor corepressors in hormone action. Dr. Cohen's clinical interests include hyperthyroidism and hypothyroidism, thyroid cancer, and pituitary disorders.


Basic Science Student Ambassadors

Sean McGuire

Investigating the role of fascin in the metastatic progression of ovarian cancer

Mentored by Dr. Ernst Lengyel, MD, PhD, Department of Obstetrics & Gynecology

Connie Shao

MS2 Project: Characterizing the osteogenecity of stem cells expressing different bone morphogenetic proteins

Mentored by Dr. Tong Chuan He, Department of Orthopedics

MS4 Project: The influence of the intestinal microbiome on recurrence rates following colorectal cancer surgery

Mentored by Dr. John Alverdy, Department of Surgery


Student Work

Sean McGuire

Investigating the role of fascin in the metastatic progression of ovarian cancer

Connie Shao

Wnt/beta-catenin signaling plays an ever-expanding role in stem cell self-renewal, tumorigenesis and cancer chemoresistance (publication)

Opening the LOX to bone metastasis: The role of secreted lysyl oxidase in skeletal recurrence of breast cancers (publication)

Damage control: Harnessing prostaglandin E2 as a potential healing factor of tissue injuries (publication)

Influence of the intestinal microbiome on anastomatic healing in the colon and rectum (publication)