Hannah Goldberg Wins National JSHS Competition

by Anne-Emilie Rouffiac

In April, GHS sophomore Hannah Goldenberg finished first place at the National Junior Science and Humanities Symposia (JSHS), a public speaking competition for students conducting research.

“I was so shocked… I still am,” she confessed. Interestingly, her win was a surprise to her.

Since freshman year, Hannah has been a part of the Honors Science Research program at GHS. In 9th grade, she began to study vaping. She looked at the chemical components in a vaping device. In 2018, Hannah presented her research at the Connecticut Science and Engineering Fair (CSEF). placing fourth in the Life Sciences category.

This year, she worked in a laboratory at SUNY Downstate Medical Center in Brooklyn, NY. There, she used live human bronchial cells to see if juuling could cause the development of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary disease (COPD). To do this, she observed the cells’ expression of the MUC5AC and MUC5B genes as they were exposed to vaping fluids. A person does not want to have significant expression of these genes as they indicate that the body has been harmed. Hannah’s cells saw an increase in the expression of these genes. Since they are are linked to COPD, Hannah concluded that vaping raises one’s chances of developing the pulmonary illness.

She presented these findings at the Connecticut JSHS and came in second place. She moved on to the Nationals, which took place in Albuquerque, New Mexico, in mid-April, 2019. Hannah won first place in the Biomedical Science category at the national level. She and her supportive mentor, Mr. Bramante, were so excited with the results of the competition. This summer, she will continue to make a difference through research. She will take on an internship at a lab to study potential treatments for COPD to help make an impact through research.

Photo Credit: Andrew Bramante

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