The newly formed JHU Society of Women in Science recently sponsored its first undergraduate research poster session, held in the Glass Pavilion on the Homewood campus.
At the session, senior Rachel Lei, a biology major (above), talks to Krieger School of Arts and Sciences dean Herbert Kessler about her research in the lab of Elizabeth Jaffee, associate oncology professor in the School of Medicine.
Lei studies interactions between immune system cells and neu, a protein involved in regulating cell growth. Too much of normal neu in mammary cells of the breast leads to some forms of breast cancer. Lei is studying the immune system's ability to recognize and destroy cells with neu, an ability normally kept in check to avoid misdirected attacks on healthy cells. Scientists hope one day to activate this ability with vaccines to reduce chances that a woman will develop breast tumors.