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Saturday, May 7, 10:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.

ORLANDO, FL - May 3, 2011 - Discover the surprising similarities in our human blueprints during a day of DNA at the Orlando Science Center on Saturday, May 7! Thanks to the support of the National Human Genome Research Institute, the Orlando Science Center presents its first ever Annual DNA Day Celebration! Learn all about this amazing molecule during this day-long event featuring activities, speakers, tours and presentations that explore DNA through four basic ideas: health, research, everyday life, and careers.

See your own genetic blueprint and add your own imprint to the Orlando Science Center’s real-time, growing virtual helix. Witness genetic science unwrap a 3000 year old forensic case in Mummies: Secrets of the Pharaohs on the giant screen of the Dr. Phillips CineDome. Tour the exhibition of DNArt where several staff members have poured their blood, sweat and cheek swabs into these personal portraits. Also, check out DNA art from local VIPs, including Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer. Plus, create genetic jewelry, including bracelets and pendants representing your own DNA.

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High School Freshman Takes Home Top Science Prize

15 Year-Old Whiz Kid Wins 13th Annual Orlando Science Center Competition

Orlando, FL - May 1, 2011 - Kristen Clayton, a 15 year-old freshman from Brevard County’s Viera High School and a first time participant in the Dr. Nelson Ying Science Competition took home the top prize during the awards ceremony on Sunday, May 1. Clayton takes home a trophy, a $5,000 cash scholarship plus $1,000 awards each for her science teacher and her school. For more than a decade, Philanthropist, Scientist and Entrepreneur Dr. Nelson Ying has hosted this competition in collaboration with the Orlando Science Center to encourage the outstanding scientific accomplishments of our community’s teens.

Clayton’s research concerns a rapidly growing aquatic plant named Lemna minor and its potential for use in the production of ethanol fuel. Her work allows the plant to absorb large amount of phosphates and nitrates from the water, which helps reduce algae growth while allowing the plant to attain its maximum starch content. This result makes Lemna minor ideal feedstock for ethanol production.

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Academy Award®-winning team brings younger audience into the fold

Premieres Saturday, May 14, 2011

Orlando, FL - April 27, 2011 - Animalopolis, the first film for giant screen theaters to include children as young as three-years-old in the target audience, is coming to the Orlando Science Center on May 14, 2011 for screenings in the Dr. Phillips CineDome throughout the summer. Directed by award-winning Tim Huntley, and produced by Graphic Films’ Paul Novros, Animalopolis breaks new ground as a giant screen documentary balancing the cinematic interests of the entire family.

The film takes a lighthearted and imaginary look at a variety of animals including cheetahs that race like a Ferrari, bears that run their own fishing school, an operatic lion, scary crabs that hold a town hostage and even attempt to cuddle with children, and much more. It will provide audiences with a journey of smiles and chuckles. Whether going nose to nose with hippos as they graze upon nature's massive salad bar, or eye to eye with dancing bears, sea lions turning somersaults, or an otter that prays, audiences are reminded that nature provides us with humor and wonder, everywhere.

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Finalist Neel Patel is an 11th grade student at Oviedo High School in Seminole County and is a member of the Beta Club and Mu Alpha Theta. A science research since sixth grade, Neel is now a dual enrollment student at the University of Central Florida and has published and presented his research at various simulation and training conferences. Though he keeps busy with his studies, Neel is also an active member of his school’s varsity swimming team and water polo team and enjoys swimming and surfing. He earned the rank of Eagle Scout through the Boy Scouts of America.

Neel’s research project for the Ying Competition focuses on how humans absorb information, specifically graphs and patterns. Over the past three years, he has worked on various studies having to do with sonification (auditory patterns). He decided to further this by concentrating on the accuracy of comprehension and the exact processes of sonification. It is his hope that from his research we will be able to better understand how to apply sonification for everyday use such as assisting the visually impaired.

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Deepak Sathyanarayan is a senior at Volusia County’s Spruce Creek High School with a passion for sharing, protecting and cherishing the Earth. His entry in this year’s Dr. Ying Science Competition aims to improve plant defense mechanisms through artificially induced genetic modifications. These efforts would prevent harmful and naturally occurring mutations. His goal is to reduce our carbon footprint while relieving food shortages.

Deepak is also a participant in the International Baccalaureate Program, vice president of his school’s student government association, and team leader for the Students for Environmental Sustainability organization. He has consistently placed high in the Volusia County Science Fair, receiving 1st place every year from 2005 through 2011, excluding 2009. In 2007, Deepak won the Toshiba NSTA ExploraVision Award. His collaborative study “a high-throughput method for isolation of salicylic acid metabolic mutants” was published in Plant Methods in September 2010.

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Collin currently attends Cocoa Beach High School in Brevard County and is anything but your typical high school senior. Participating in the International Baccalaureate Program, Collin has had the opportunity to do and present scientific research since his middle school days. As a Melbourne Beach resident, he developed a love for the ocean and that love has inspired the research that he has entered in this year’s Dr. Ying Science Competition.

His entry focuses on research into karenia brevis, the organism responsible for the Florida red tide. He has investigated and invented a new, simple and inexpensive method of detection for the most harmful brevetoxin in the red tides, PbTx-3. His ultimate goal is to stop the damage to our ecosystem from these harmful red tides. If successful, he could one day save millions of species of marine life plus positively impact Florida’s fishing and tourism industries.

Collin has won numerous awards for past research, including the Discovery Channel Young Scientist Challenge’s “Planet Green” Award in 2007 and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s “Taking the Pulse of the Planet” Award in 2009. He received a scholarship from the U.S. Navy in 2009 and in 2010 he completed an internship during the summer with the NOAA Center for Costal Environmental Health and Bimolecular Research in Charleston, NC. Collin won the Ying Competition in 2009 and 2010, and is looking forward to another exciting competitive experience.

Ying_-_Colin


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"My whole my life, I was raised in a household with a mom who always pushed me to do my absolute best. For the majority of my elder years my dad hasn’t lived with us, and my mom has reared me by herself. I have always had a dog in my house, so naturally I’m a dog lover. I have a huge heart for animals and people alike and I always find myself going out of my way to help, even if it’s something little.

I’m very frugal with money, but I love to make people smile so in-turn small bills get turned into gifts all too frequently. I’ve always been the friend in the group that keeps us smiling, and in the same sense I’ve been the friend that pushes the group to stay on the right road. I personally have seen too many good friends go down the wrong road and end up ruining their lives. On many occasions you can catch me having a talk with a buddy and hopefully guiding them in a better direction. As a kid, I’m extremely outgoing and friendly. I will always be the first one to spark conversation and I can’t stand people that are stand-offish.

On an academic and school level, I have always associated myself with honors students and student athletes. I’m in-fact a multiple sport athlete competing in golf, football, weightlifting, baseball, and basketball.  I spread myself among a lot of high school “cliques” because of how many things I participate with.  Science and science fair have always been a passion of mine. Since middle school I have been in all honors courses and multiple extracurricular activities. Starting in 5th grade I have participated and won something in both math field day and Science fair. My 8th grade year my science fair project placed 1st in the state. My freshman year I placed 2nd in the international science fair. As you can see I’m extremely dedicated and passionate in the science field.

During my junior year I started taking more dual enrollment courses and minimizing my elective classes, in order to rise in the class ranks. I’ve since moved from rank 22 to number three. I also wanted to be more active in my school so I am Class president, vice president of the law academy, marketing director of the future business leaders of America, science club president, student council member, and National Honors Society member. I am a very hard worker, and loyal person. I do everything in my ability to live up to and exceed my own and my mentor’s expectations."

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777 E. Princeton Street • Orlando, Florida 32803 • Phone: 407.514.2000 • TTY: 407.514.2005 • Toll Free: 888.OSC.4FUN • Email: [email protected]
  Orlando Science Center is supported by United Arts of Central Florida, host of power2give.org/centralflorida and the collaborative Campaign for the Arts.
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