Thesis: The role of protein chaperones in persistence or decay of memory
A concussion from a high school football game coupled with curiosity about evolution sparked Kyle Patton’s fascination with neuroscience and evolutionary developmental biology.
Patton actively pursued both interests after high school at Wheaton College, designing his own major in interdisciplinary studies combining biology, psychology, and chemistry. He spent his summers at Purdue University in the laboratory of Donna Fekete, PhD, exploring inner ear development and Lowe syndrome, an inherited disease affecting the kidneys, eyes, and brain.
Patton’s thesis explored the role of stress on the evolution of learning and memory, and drew extensively from the work of Stowers Investigator Kausik Si, PhD, renowned for his research on memory. Later, during his interview at the Institute, Patton discussed his project in depth with Si, and received guidance on how to proceed.The interaction confirmed Patton’s desire to continue his research at the Stowers Institute and learn from some of the foremost leaders in neuroscience and evolutionary developmental biology. Patton graduated from Wheaton College in May 2015 and anticipates beginning life as a predoctoral researcher in the fall. He says he can’t imagine doing anything else.