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LSUS Senior Places First in National Competition During UTHealth CPRIT Program

September 24, 2020

Prerana Ramesh
Prerana Ramesh.

By Bianca Stakes

Shreveport, LA—LSU Shreveport senior Prerana Ramesh placed first in the Virtual Poster Presentation Competition in the 2020 UTHealth CPRIT Summer Undergraduate Fellowship Program. Ramesh also claimed a finalist title in the 90-Second Elevator Speech Competition.

The Cellular and Molecular Biology major’s submission focused on standardizing the eligibility criteria for unstructured breast cancer clinical trials using a knowledge graph. This model is designed to effectively match eligible patients to specific breast cancer clinical trials.

Ramesh conducted her research under the mentorship of Dr. Jingcheng Du, Dr. Kayo Fujimoto and Dr. Cui Tao from the Houston campus of the UTHealth Schools of Biomedical Informatics and Public Health. The Cancer Prevention Research Institute of Texas (CPRIT) Innovation offers a unique program for undergraduates to work with accomplished researchers who provide innovative thinking tools to their research projects.

"It’s a privilege to have opportunities to engage in cancer research projects as an undergraduate student,” Ramesh said. “I am truly grateful for the tremendous encouragement I have received from my peers and professors throughout my undergraduate career.”

LSUS Professor, Dr. Urska Cvek, encouraged Ramesh to apply for the CPRIT Fellowship after observing her dedication to success.

“Prerana is a diligent student who has already accomplished a great deal during her first few years at LSUS,” Dr. Cvek said. “I saw the potential, drive and enthusiasm in her the first time I met her, and it has been wonderful for me as one of her mentors to guide her to the national level.”

The win in Houston wasn’t the first taste of victory for Ramesh. She won the Undergraduate Poster Presentation Competition in the LSUS Annual Regional Student Scholars Forum in both 2019 and 2020. Ramesh will graduate in December 2020 with career aspirations in translational medicine, which involves integrating research with medical care.

“I’m excited and honored to have won first place in both the CPRIT Summer Undergraduate Fellowship and LSUS Student Scholars’ Forum poster presentation competitions,” Ramesh said. “It was an amazing experience to present my research during both of these events, and I’m happy that I could make my mentors proud as well.”

For more information on the LSUS Biology Department, or to schedule an appointment with Dr. Cveck or Prerana Ramesh, contact Wendell Riley, Director of Media and External Relations at LSUS at wendell.riley@lsus.edu or by calling 318-797-5108.

Founded in 1967, Louisiana State University Shreveport offers a wide array of nationally accredited undergraduate and graduate degree programs, including a doctoral degree. The university’s mission is to educate a diverse population of graduate and undergraduate students; engage in regional and global thought leadership through community collaboration and service; and innovate to enhance the application of knowledge and intellectual discovery through faculty and student research and creative endeavors.

 
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