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Student Profile – Sun Mei Liu

Sun Mei Downstate

Sun Mei Liu is a third year student studying at the College of Medicine at SUNY Downstate. For the 2015-2016 academic year, Sun Mei took the year off to do research funded by the Alumni Association. She will enter her final year of medical school next fall.

When Sun Mei began looking for research topics to study on her year off, she had not yet decided that specialty she would pursue. She looked to opportunities that would allow me her explore different aspects of medicine.

Sun Mei goes on to explain in her own words:

“Inflammation was one of those very topics; it is present in almost all disease processes and cannot be avoided in surgical settings. My research with Dr. Zhang and staff focuses on targeting a molecular cause of inflammation, complement C3, as the cause of myocardial ischemia and reperfusion injury that transpires during cardiothoracic surgeries such as heart transplantation and coronary artery bypass graft surgeries. What inspired me to pursue this project is that C3 affects numerous other disease processes such as macular degeneration, nephropathies, and hemolytic uremic syndromes. By researching this topic, we have the potential to slow down the inflammatory process, and in turn, prevent damage across a wide variety of diseases, not just one.”

While many students choose to take a year off from medial school for a variety of reasons, very few students can afford to do so due to financial constraints.

Sun Mei was grateful for the financial support for this year, “I feel extremely fortunate to be one of the few to receive funding for an entire year. The alumni association gave me the freedom and flexibility to do research without having to worry about the financial stresses of making a choice that would benefit me both personally and professionally.”

Thank you for supporting medical students like Sun Mei Liu for one full year of research. If you’d like to learn more about our full year research program, check out

You can make donations to support this and other Alumni Association Funded programs at:

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