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From the Editor, 2021

Dear Reader,

I am pleased to present volume eleven of Young Scientist, a peer-reviewed journal dedicated to the publication of original research conducted by high school students.

This year’s authors have faced unprecedented challenges. The COVID-19 pandemic shut down schools and universities, requiring many of the students to complete their research experiences remotely. As a result, Young Scientist is publishing review articles for the first time, including a very topical review of “Nuclear Virus-Host Interactions During Coronavirus Infection.” This volume contains contributions from 14 authors on a diverse range of topics spanning machine learning, medicine and cancer biology, marine microplastics, and the development of low-cost medical devices, among others.

Young Scientist would not exist without the dedication of many people across Vanderbilt’s campus. First, we would like to extend special thanks to the graduate students and postdoctoral scholars who volunteered their time to carefully review each article at least twice, ensuring the scientific quality of each article. Next, we want to recognize the faculty who welcomed these students into their research groups and everyone who helped mentor these young scientists in such unusual times. As always, we are grateful to the patrons who have generously supported Young Scientist and the Center for Science Outreach at Vanderbilt.

I hope that you enjoy this volume of Young Scientist and are inspired by the remarkable achievements of the students who contributed their work. To learn more about the journal or to participate in its production as an author, mentor, reviewer, or sponsor, please visit

Lauren E. Buchanan, Ph.D.