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Burdock Group Names SOT 2021 Student Scientific Award Winner

Burdock Group continues to encourage undergraduates to pursue a career in food ingredient safety and regulation by offering its Student Scientific Award. Lei Zhang was honored with the Burdock Group SOT 2021 Student Scientific Award this year. Lei will receive $1,000 along with a commemorative plaque. Congratulations to Lei on her achievements!

Lei Zhang, M.S. Ph.D Student in Toxicology Veterinary Physiology and Pharmacology Texas A&M University

Lei Zhang is a Ph.D student in Toxicology at Texas A&M University and she joined SOT in February 2021. She is also a graduate research assistant in the laboratory of Stephen Safe, where she conducts research on the molecular oncology and potential clinical applications of a series phytochemical derived natural products that are ligands for the orphan nuclear receptor 4A1 (NR4A1, TR3, NUR77).

Currently, she focuses on Resveratrol, a phytochemical that is produced in grape and berry skins, and showing that it induced targetable pathways and genes. Resveratrol has been touted as a wonder drug and many mechanisms have been proposed. Her study for the first time identifies and confirms resveratrol acts, in part, in lung cancer cells as a NR4A1 antagonist and this discovery will facilitate future clinical applications in patients expressing NR4A1.

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