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Each summer, MatheBioU & MathExpLR (Mathematical Experience through Learning Research) holds a 6-8 week program at UCI for high school students and undergraduates. Students work with a PI on a computational biology research project. In addition, there will be weekly activities in skills development, including how to give presentations, or how to turn math into computer algorithms. By the end of the project all students will give a presentation about their research and submit an expository paper describing their work.


  • Metabolic Symbiosis in Tumors (John Lowengrub Lab): determine conditions under which metabolic symbiosis is not only a manifestation of cancer heterogeneity, but a fundamental aspect of tumor survival.
  • Chlamydia Cell Fate Regulation (German Enciso Lab): determine using modeling whether Chlamydia cell division is likely to be polar or binary, and what consequences this has in cell fate regulation.
  • Actin Polymerization (Jun Allard Lab): study the protein formin and how its different spatial configurations affect its ability to elongate actin fibers.
  • DNA Methylation in Gene Regulation (Elizabeth Read Lab): use stochastic modeling to describe the effect of gene methylation in protein network dynamics.
  • Signal Transduction in Skin Cells (Stott Atwood Lab): use single-cell RNA sequencing data and tSNE to describe how skin cells respond to molecular signaling events.


Research projects by 2018 MathExpLR program high school students Sam Alber and Karen Chung have won several awards. Congratulations to Sam Alber and Karen Chung! 

Sam Alber (supervised by center faculty member Elizabeth Read):

     a) Blue Ribbon, Irvine Unified School District science fair, 2019

     b) 2nd place for biochemistry, Orange County Science and Engineering Fair, 2019


 Karen Chung (supervised by the center director Qing Nie):

    a) Finalist, Southern California Junior Science & Humanities Symposium, 2019
    b) Finalist, California Science Fair (CSEF), 2019
    c) 3rd place in the Physiology/Medical Biology in Orange County Fair, 2019
    d) A Special Award from American Association for Clinical Chemistry for project’s “contribution to health sciences” 

The Junior Science and Humanities Symposia (JSHS) Program is a tri-service – U.S. Army, Navy, and Air Force – sponsored STEM competition which promotes original research and experimentation in the sciences, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) at the high school level and publicly recognizes students for outstanding achievement. By connecting talented students, their teachers, and research professionals at affiliated symposia and by rewarding research excellence, JSHS aims to widen the pool of trained talent prepared to conduct research and development vital to our nation. 

Summer 2018 Schedule

Generously supported in part by the Yu-Family Endowment Fund.