Andrew Ninh is a graduate of Fountain Valley High School in Orange County, California and will be studying Bioinformatics at Baylor University in Waco, Texas. Andrew has been published and has presented his research at international bioinformatics conferences (often alongside PhD holders and post-docs). He is also a member of bioinformatics and biomedical societies such as IEEE, BMES, and ISCB.
His research interests include bioinformatics, computational biology, theoretical biology, and data mining. Outside of his research, he enjoys playing the clarinet, oboe, and piano, playing tennis, and collecting insects. Andrew is an Eagle Scout of Troop 412 and is a member of the National Eagle Scout Association.
Project: Constructing Cell Lineages of C. elegans Using Neighbor-Independent Substitution Systems
C. elegans, more colloquially known as the nematode, is a model organism that has been used extensively in molecular and developmental cellular biology (Brenner, 1974). In 1977, Sulston and Horovitz successfully established the cell lineages of C. elegans (Sulston and Horovitz, 1977).
I will be using neighbor-independent substitution systems (NISS) to recreate the literature-established cell lineages of the nematode. This model would provide a way to view developmental cellular processes as following simple rules.
Specifically, I will be investigating the nematode seam cells, whose cellular processes are governed by the Wnt and Runx genes (Gleason and Eisenmann, 2010; Nimmo and Woollard, 2008). Seam cells are horizontally lined cells within the nematode that exhibit stem-like properties in early developmental stages and produce epidermal and other sensory cells. In literature, it seems that these seam cells, though horizontally lined, demonstrate neighbor-independent behavior rather than neighbor-dependent behavior.
Favorite Four-Color, Four State Turing Machine