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Jennifer Chan, 18, of Upper Saddle River, submitted an Intel Science Talent Search project in biochemistry that investigated ways to increase the efficacy of the breast cancer drug tamoxifen. Jennifer examined the relationship between the expression of activation-induced cytidine deaminase (AID), a DNA-modifying enzyme that is upregulated in cancer cells, and the efficacy of tamoxifen. She found that at low doses, tamoxifen reduced AID levels only in cells possessing estrogen receptors, but at high doses, tamoxifen increased AID levels in cells with and without estrogen receptors. By inhibiting NFkB (a transcription factor that induces pro-survival signaling in cells) as part of a high-dose tamoxifen treatment, she was able to observe a reduction in cell growth and AID expression. Jennifer's pursuits in medical research were motivated by her personal experiences with cancer fatalities among her immediate family and close friends. She attends the Academy for Medical Science Technology in Hackensack, and has been a volunteer EMT with a local ambulance service for more than two years. She is also the recipient of a Meritorious Service award for providing emergency care at the scene of a severe car accident. Jennifer is the daughter of Dawn Liu.
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