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Media Advisory

For immediate use

Sept. 28, 2007

Media invited to see UNC’s Destiny science bus in Rosman, Brevard, Hendersonville

Media representatives are invited to experience hands-on science aboard Discovery, one of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill’s two traveling science laboratories, when it visits Rosman High School, Brevard High School and North Henderson High School next week.

Tuesday (Oct. 2)
8:05 a.m. to 9:40 a.m.
11:15 a.m. to 12:45 p.m.
Rosman High School
749 Pickens Highway, Rosman

Students from two of Nancy Sanders’ biology classes will perform a lab exercise called “Mystery of the Crooked Cell.” Students will discover the molecular basis of sickle cell disease by using gel electrophoresis as a diagnostic tool to differentiate normal hemoglobin from hemoglobin found in individuals with sickle cell disease.

Tuesday (Oct. 2)
1:30 p.m. to 3 p.m.
Rosman High School
749 Pickens Highway, Rosman
During the same visit, students from one of Sarah Justice’s advanced biology classes will perform “Weigh to Go!” Students will explore the connections between obesity, diabetes, high blood pressure and high cholesterol. Using hydrophobic interactive chromatography, a key process in biotechnology research, students will purify a genetically engineered designer protein (simulated modified leptin) from transformed bacterial cells. Additional activities will help students become more aware of the obesity epidemic at global and individual levels.

Wednesday (Oct. 3)
8:10 a.m. to 9:43 a.m.
9:48 a.m. to 11:21 a.m.
11:56 a.m. to 1:26 p.m.
1:31 p.m. to 3:01 p.m.
Brevard High School
747 Country Club Road, Brevard

Students from two of Jan Galloway’s and two of Kathy Piersol’s biology classes will perform “Mystery of the Crooked Cell.”

Thursday (Oct. 4)
8:05 a.m. to 9:35 a.m.
North Henderson High School
35 Fruitland Road, Hendersonville

Students from one of Pam Sutton’s advanced placement biology classes will also perform “Mystery of the Crooked Cell.”

Thursday (Oct. 4)
11:50 a.m. to 1:20 p.m.
1:30 p.m. to 3 p.m.
North Henderson High School
35 Fruitland Road, Hendersonville

Students from two of Fred Gore’s honors chemistry classes will perform a lab exercise called “The Crucial Concentration.” Students will assume the role of laboratory investigators for a court case to determine the amount of protein found in three sports drinks. Using the general concept of the Lowry assay and microanalysis skills, students learn how to use a spectrophotometer, measure absorbencies, collect quantitative data and produce a standard curve to find the protein content in each sample.

The Destiny traveling science learning program is Morehead Planetarium and Science Center’s formal science education initiative serving pre-college teachers and students across North Carolina. Destiny develops and delivers a standards-based, hands-on curriculum for students and professional development for teachers with a team of educators and a fleet of vehicles that travel throughout the state.

Destiny and Discovery, two custom-built, 40-foot, 33,000-pound buses, bring the latest science and technology equipment to students who otherwise would not see a high-tech laboratory or what a career in science can offer. The modules described above are among 14 offered as part of Destiny’s curriculum. “Mystery of the Crooked Cell” and “The Crucial Concentration” are developed from Boston University School of Medicine CityLab modules. All of Destiny’s modules are aligned with the N.C. Standard Course of Study.

The science buses are powerful visual images that heighten public awareness of the importance of and funding necessary for quality science education. The Destiny program first hit the road in 2000.

Destiny Web site: http://www.moreheadplanetarium.org/go/destiny

Destiny contact: Claire Ruocchio, (919) 843-5915 or clr@unc.edu
News Services contact: Susan Houston, (919) 962-8415 or susan_houston@unc.edu