Potsdam High School grads are summer chemistry interns at Clarkson University
Monday, June 11, 2012 - 2:07 pm

Three Potsdam High School graduates are interning for the summer in the Clarkson University chemistry laboratory. From left are Professor Richard Partch, Martin LaFleur, Elizabeth Waters, and Maya Holsen.

 POTSDAM -- Three Potsdam High School graduates are summer interns in the chemistry laboratory of Senior University Professor Richard E. Partch at Clarkson University.

Maya Holsen and Beth Waters, who have completed their freshman year at the University at Buffalo and Syracuse University, respectively, and Martin LaFleur, a senior honors program student at Clarkson, are preparing and using chemicals having potential for medical applications.

Holsen, along with a Clarkson senior honors student, is evaluating the efficiency of binding and deactivating several harmful chemicals, such as commonly overdosed narcotics and the poison ivy skin irritant.

Waters and LaFleur are preparing gold nanoparticles, which are themselves useful as photothermal therapy agents for cancer treatment, with attached cancer chemotherapeutic molecules, so that once the modified particles enter tumor cells, both chemical and hyperthermic effects occur to kill the cells.