The innovation engine for new materials

Debra St. Hilaire

Debra St. Hilaire


Oak Hill School

Grade Level: 

Junior High

Teaching Position: 

Physical Science
Life Science


Joseph A. Zasadzinski


Chemical Engineering


Patrick Stenger

Research Project Year: 


Research Project Title: 

Competitive Adsorption: Investigating the Effects of Albumin and Salt on Lung Surfactant

Research Project Description: 

My research project was investigating the effects of albumen and salt on lung surfactant adsorption into the air-water interface of the alveoli. Briefly, lung surfactant, when adsorbed into the interface, keeps lung tissue flexible and permeable such that we can breathe with ease. However, when affected by trauma, toxic inhalation, or near drowning, the immune response floods lung tissue fluid with the blood protein, albumin, which out- competes lung surfactant for adsorption into the interface.

Our focus was to determine if, and to what degree, salt would reverse albumin’s inhibition effects on lung surfactant adsorption. Our tests found that salt does not remove albumin from the interface, rather it facilitates lung surfactant adsorption. We also found that once the lung surfactant adsorbed into the interface, it out competed albumin, keeping albumin below the interface in the lung tissue fluid

Research Project Attachments: 

Curriculum Project Year: 


Curriculum Project Title: 

The Science of Energy Integrated Curriculum

Curriculum Project Description: 

The Science of Energy Integrated Curriculum is designed to be a semester long study. This real-life theme will enable students to engage in in-depth and thorough investigation of various science concepts already familiar to them but never discussed or investigated academically. This exciting approach encourages integrating all of the sciences as they occur in the natural progression of the content study, instead of in unit by unit blocks, which lack interest and relativity to students’ lives. Life, Earth, Physics, Chemistry, Inquiry will be incorporated into the curriculum.

Are you using a curriculum project in your own classroom?  Please take our short SURVEY.