Brookline High School
Brookline, MA

Robbyn Issner

Growing up, Aria was inspired by stories her mother told about her experiences as a doctor. She described medicine as looking at and understanding complex problems, which peaked Aria’s curiosity in science. Aria applied to the Broad Summer Scholars Program because she knew it would give her the opportunity to conduct an individual research project and make a meaningful contribution to cutting-edge science.

Aria worked on the Encyclopedia of DNA Elements (ENCODE) Project, which aims to understand the functional elements of the human genome. Her group used antibodies to target and flag the proteins which are responsible for histone modifications and chromatin regulation. Specifically, Aria worked to help her team understand why some antibodies which seem to fail antibody validation and screening protocols might actually be able to provide helpful and accurate data.

Aria’s favorite part about working at the Broad was being surrounded by really excited people working on interesting problems. She enjoyed attending lectures and meetings that exposed her to work others were doing in fields which were brand new to her.