COLUMBUS, Miss. -- Nine students and two faculty members from the biology department attended a two-day gathering of students and professors from all over the state at 82nd annual meeting of the Mississippi Academy of Sciences recently held in Hattiesburg.

Seniors Lisa Shrestha and Shreya Ghimire along with Dr. Ghanshyam Heda, professor of biology, presented their research at the annual meeting. Another W student Mary Carr also presented her research that she conducted as a summer research intern at Mississippi State University during last summer.

“Lisa and Shreya are working on various aspects of genetic disease cystic fibrosis (CF) in my research laboratory here at The W. Their contributions will advance the overall goal of my research that is to extend the functional life of mutated CFTR, a protein that is responsible for causing CF,” said Dr. Heda.

Shrestha made an oral presentation of her research titled, “Optimization of western blotting for the detection of CFTR expression in human pancreatic cell lines” at this meeting.

Shreya’s poster was titled, “Synergistic effects of proteasomal and lysosomal enzyme inhibitors on plasma membrane CFTR” received honorable mention in the competition.
Her poster was selected as one of two top two submissions within the division of cellular, molecular and developmental biology and invited to compete in the Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) poster competition.

“It was truly a great honor to have been selected as one of the two best abstract in the Cellular and Molecular Biology division. I got a chance to present at Millsaps/ HHMI Undergraduate Scholars Symposium and meet some really great people and learn a lot from them,” said Ghimire.

Ghimire said it is a big deal for student researchers to get a chance to attend and present at such conferences. Not only does it help them get recognized for their contributions to the particular research but they also get to learn a lot about other researchers in being done in our field.

“Presentation at various regional and national conferences is boosting their confidence. Further, this training is allowing them to pursue higher education in graduate and professional schools,” said Heda.

Mississippi Academy of Sciences is the oldest science organization in the state of Mississippi that meets once every year from last 82 years at different parts of the state. Students (both undergraduate and graduate), professors, academicians and scientists from universities, colleges and industry across the state attend this meeting and present their research under various sub-divisions such as cellular, molecular & developmental biology, chemistry, physics, agricultural & plant sciences, health sciences, ecology & evolutionary biology, mathematics, etc.

For more information about the Mississippi Academy of Sciences, visit


March 28, 2018
Contact: Urusha Silwal
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