Undergraduate Research Explorer
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Ruth Alemayehu

Ruth is a fifth-year student majoring in Biology for Health Sciences and specializing in Neuroscience at the University of Toronto Mississauga. She received a prestigious Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council Undergraduate Student Research Award (NSERC USRA).

The project she completed in the summer was called “Exploring the Roles of Beta-Arrestin 1 in Mood and Anxiety Disorders” with Professor Mary Cheng in the Department of Biology, University of Toronto Mississauga. Through her NSERC USRA experience, Ruth gained experience conducting molecular biology experiments, like Immunohistochemistry and Western Blot. She also gained experience conducting behavioural tests on mice, like the Forced Swim Test, Tail Suspension Test, Open Field Test and Elevated Plus Maze. Ruth was particularly struck by the fact that her research team had to perform numerous behavioral tests to address their central research question. It highlighted that sometimes multiple experiments and evaluations are required as part of the research process. Ruth also had the opportunity to strengthen her literature search, data collection and data analysis skills through this experience.

Ruth is ecstatic to use her NSERC USRA experience to further her path in research. She is very interested in Health Services Research and Public Health/Public Health Policy. In particular, Ruth is “passionate about understanding the social determinants of health, along with equity in healthcare.”

Research Type(s): Research Fellowships / Studentships