Biology

Honors Spotlight Star: Caprice Eisele

Caprice Eisele (’20), a Biology major, is currently conducting research with Dr.  Rebecca Lyczak about the developmental protein, PAM-1, and its effects on early development.

Caprice Eisele was asked some questions about her lab experience at Ursinus.

Q: Whose lab you are in?

A: Dr. Rebecca Lyczak

Q: What is the title of your research?

A: Does Using wee-1.3 as a Secondary Suppressor Restore Wildtype Timing of Meiosis and Oocyte Maturation in pam-1 C. elegans Mutants?

Q: Can you explain your project using 3-10 sentences in lay-people terms so that a non-scientist could understand it?

A: I work with microscopic nematodes to study a developmental protein, PAM-1, and its effects on early development. I look to see how mutations in PAM-1 affect meiosis and how PAM-1 interacts with another developmental protein, WEE-1.3, before and after an embryo is fertilized. My project helps us to understand how proteins can interact in many different processes!

Q: What are your anticipated plans following graduation?

A: I will be attending the Ohio State University to pursue a Ph.D. in Biomedical Sciences after graduation.

Q: What is a fun fact about yourself?

A: I went to Los Angeles with my lab last summer to present our work at an International C. elegans Conference. Probably one of the coolest experiences I had during college.

Q: What do you think is the most challenging part of doing research?

A: Patience! It took me a while to realize that the results are (hopefully) worth the tedious parts of the lab. But there’s no better feeling than putting in a lot of time and effort in order to get significant results.

Q: What is the most rewarding part of doing research?

A: The most rewarding thing about research to me is the collaborative environment. Stopping by lab every day just to check in and see some familiar faces was the best. It’s so nice to have other students that support you and your project, a mentor you can count on, and multiple people (especially Eva) that offered advice or an ear to listen on the bad days.

Q: What is a specific memory that you have about your time in lab or at a meeting?

A: I always looked forward to our lab meetings. Dr. Lyczak or Eva would always bring in a snack for the group, and it was so fun to hear about other projects or joke about something funny that happened in lab recently.

Q: Do you have a special message for your research mentor?

A: I can’t thank Dr. Lyczak enough for her guidance in research. Even though I hopped on the team as a Junior, she saw potential in me and I’ve grown more as a scientist than I ever would’ve thought I could. I attribute a lot of my leadership, confidence, and passion in my research experience to having her as a role model.

Q: Do you have any advice for other students?

A: Even if you are on a pre-med track, still get involved with research! I thought for sure I would go to medical school, but I realized I am much more interested in collecting and analyzing data that will help find a cure for something someday than I am in the idea of treating patients.

Q: What will you miss about your dept./major when you graduate?

A: Everything. Every professor that I became close with or that gave me incredible opportunities, every class that really pushed us to think as scientists, every word of encouragement I received on my projects from faculty I barely even knew. No place like the Ursinus Bio Department!