Sumana Veeravelli, a graduate of Desert Vista High School, is studying biomedical engineering in her junior year at the University of Arizona. She has spent the past 12 weeks at the university working under Dr. Ted Trouard in a Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) research lab to figure out what kind of changes, aging and hypertension, can cause in the brain.

The goal is to expand the role of MRI technology in clinical applications, particularly in the diagnosis and monitoring of disease progression and treatment. Veeravelli’s project uses Diffusion Tensor Imaging (DTI), a novel MRI technique, to look at neural pathways that connect different areas of the brain.

Veeravelli’s research is funded in part by a grant from the Howard Hughes Medical Institute to the University of Arizona Undergraduate Biology Research Program (UBRP). The program aims to teach undergraduates science by involving them in biological research.

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