UMBTC offers free tours

UMBTC+offers+free+tours

Sophie Hillmeyer

The Upper Michigan Brain Tumor Center (UMBTC) invited community members to tour the lab on Thursday, Nov. 1, and learn about the research that is taking place within the facility.

The event was held in conjunction with international brain tumor awareness week and gave graduate students an opportunity to present their research. The facility provides research opportunities for about 35 NMU students ranging from freshmen to graduate students and analyzes different cancer cells and proteins to target how they work and how to slow their growth.

Undergrad researcher Brittany Moore, senior biology major, said the event was created as a way to help raise awareness and educate the public about cancer.

“People get diagnosed [with cancer] and don’t know what, why or how the cancer cells are working,” Moore said. “We can never make cancer better, but education can make you feel more empowered.”

Moore said she has been involved in this research for about one year and likes the challenge of overcoming the obstacles of the continuing research.

Executive Director of the UMBTC Robert Winn said this research has been beneficial to the students involved and encourages some of them to go on and do cancer research full time.

“It is pretty cool to see students interested in learning as much as we can about brain tumor cells to find and target cancer cells,” Winn said.

The UMBTC was established 14 years ago when a need for a new form of treatment for one of the most aggressive forms of brain cancer was assessed, Winn said. This formed a collaboration between NMU and U.P. Health Systems Marquette and is able to provide students with research and clinical applications, he
added.

“We offer unique opportunities you don’t normally get at a university the size of NMU,” Winn said. “We do a lot of stuff Ph.D. students might not even be
doing.”

Student researchers meet every Thursday morning at 7 a.m. in West Science to discuss research and anyone who is interested is encouraged to join, Moore said.