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2023 CROW



To our readers, 

The Eighth Edition of The CROW was composed and published in a time when the COVID-19 global pandemic began to shift to the past, and we students continued re-establishing our lives as in-person learners and learning communities. During this time, members of the University of Washington Bothell community continued to feel the impact of this transition in every aspect of our lives while still pursuing our education. Simultaneously, this time has been shaped by global events, fueling a generation of young adults dedicated to addressing our planet’s persistent issues. This board feels it necessary to acknowledge the hardship and loss these past few years have brought to students, faculty, support staff, and everyone we are connected to, near and far. We acknowledge the effort it takes to be involved in changing our world and lives, so thank you foremost for being here a part of this work.

With this edition, The CROW continues to highlight the incredible dedication of students at UW Bothell as they conduct, analyze, and synthesize their own research investigations in topics ranging from science and technology, interdisciplinary arts, health studies, and everything in between. Conducting research is a high-impact learning practice that engages students outside the classroom and allows them to think more critically about the topics they wish to discover. By taking the initiative to submit their work for review by a board of their peers, the authors in this journal have taken steps towards becoming active contributors to academic discourse that values inclusion, expansion, and critical thinking.

The University of Washington Bothell is situated on the ancestral lands of the Coast Salish peoples, including the Duwamish and Snohomish tribes. We acknowledge this land’s deep historical, cultural, and spiritual significance to Indigenous communities. We recognize the ongoing harm caused by colonization and affirm our responsibility as a student- led research publication to engage in decolonization efforts. The CROW seeks to create an inclusive and equitable publication that values Indigenous experience, knowledge, and culture, and fosters justice.

We would like to extend special recognition and gratitude to our student authors. In spite of fears of rejection, or perceived possible judgment by your peers, our authors showed great appreciation and care for the extensive editing and publication process, all during a difficult time for students making their publication all the more extraordinary. We know submitting was difficult, and we appreciate your patience and effort. We are so excited to share the 2023 Edition of The CROW!


Your friends on the Editorial Board: Annie, Bentley, Daniel Grace, Layla, Sakshi, & Sidra.

The Effect of Advanced Age and Alzheimer's Disease Neuropathology on Levels of the Tight Junction Protein, Occludin, in the Brain Microvasculature

Ali Mirzazadeh

ABSTRACT: The Blood-Brain Barrier (BBB) is a physiologic interface between the bloodstream and the brain. The BBB has tight junction proteins (TJPs) that restrict blood and toxins from entering the brain and allow important nutrients and biomolecules, like glucose and amino acids, to diffuse through the membrane and supply energy for neural processes. This interface plays an important role in the health of our brains and helps protect against an array of neurodegenerative diseases. However, it is possible for diseases like Alzheimer’s Dementia (AD) to impact this interface and cause it to be less functional as a barrier. In recent studies, we found a significant increase in the TJP, occludin, located in microvessels (MVs) isolated from the parietal lobe of female subjects of advanced age with Alzheimer’s Dementia (AD) relative to age-matched females (F) without Alzheimer’s Dementia (NAD) (n=8 AD, n=8 NAD; age range: 79-99; mean: 93 years for both groups). There were no significant differences in occludin between MVs of male subjects with and without dementia, who were of a much younger average age (mean: 74 years old). To further evaluate this finding, we examined MVs in cross-cuts of the superior parietal lobes of a separate group of F subjects, both AD and NAD, via immunohistochemistry (IHC) techniques (n=12 AD, age range: 82-93; n= 5 NAD, age range: 83-98). We additionally measured levels and distribution of occludin in isolated MVs from the original group of female subjects with AD and NAD (n=8) utilizing immunofluorescence (IF) techniques. Preliminary analysis of IHC was not able to detect differences in occludin levels, but initial IF studies suggest that higher levels of occludin in MV derived from F AD subjects. Current studies are evaluating occludin localization in both groups of brain MVs. In summary, our data suggested that occludin is increased in brain MVs from female subjects of advanced age with AD, relative to those NAD participants. Ongoing studies with IHC and IF confirm differences in levels and determine localization. The increase of occludin in F AD MVs is an unexpected finding, and could reflect a compensatory mechanism within brain MV in the context of both advanced age, and Alzheimer’s Dementia. Based on our findings, we could potentially develop methods to create therapies that mimic the compensatory mechanism used to protect our BBB and preventative care for patients. 

Unearthing the Environmental Consequences in Seattle’s New Holly Neighborhood

Ishika Nayyar

ABSTRACT: Seattle’s New Holly neighborhood is home to a diverse community facing numerous environmental challenges. Due to historical redlining and systemic inequality, this community has been disinvested in and exposed to hazardous pollutants, putting them at risk of health issues and displacement. New Holly has some of the least clean air quality in one of the U.S.’s most polluted cities, and its residents are disproportionately affected by environmental contamination. The lack of efforts and resources to clean up the community puts them at risk of developing health issues. Transit in the neighborhood also contributes to poor air quality and poses hazards to pedestrians and vehicles due to inadequate safety measures. New developments and projects in the area encourage gentrification and displacement of low-income families. While community members and organizations try to address these issues, systemic and historical factors make public efforts necessary to advocate for change and create an equitable and healthy community. 

From Virtual to Reality: An Economic Analysis of the Cloud Kitchen Industry

Mariam Badr

ABSTRACT: Cloud kitchens have grown to a market size of $63.9B USD in 2022. The COVID-19 pandemic led to a surge in the market for these facilities as they proved to be a cost-effective option for restaurants to continue operating and meet the rising demand for food delivery. Cloud kitchens offer a range of economic benefits, including reduced costs, increased profitability, and decreased barriers to entry for new restaurant businesses. They also provide greater flexibility in food production and menu selections to meet the fluctuating customer demand. With the shift towards takeout and delivery likely to remain prevalent in the food service industry, cloud kitchens are expected to continue being an innovative and efficient way to meet the growing demand for online food ordering and delivery.

When Group Boundaries Blur: The Impact of Southeast Asian Representation in Film and Television

Anika Gopez

ABSTRACT: Representation of minorities in the media is a frequently touched upon topic, especially regarding racial minorities. While the media has made strides in increased representation of minorities over the years, the overall quantity and quality of representation in television and film is still lacking. This is especially true when it comes to the representation of Southeast Asians in media, as both media platforms and the general populace are too quick to group Southeast Asians, South Asians, and East Asians into a singular racial category. This research paper analyzes sources implicating the impact that the lack of quality representation in media has on Southeast Asians, to build an argument about media being a powerful tool that should be used in ways that will lead us to a more accepting and diverse world.

Domestic Violence: Laws and regulations are discouraging women from reporting

Amy Walesby

*Content Warning – this paper covers domestic violence topics that may be triggering for some audiences.

ABSTRACT: The statistics show that in the United States, rates of domestic violence against women have not decreased over the years, and globally, the statistics look very similar.  Every year, more research emerges causing the current laws around domestic violence to become outdated.  Without evaluating these, the likelihood of women continuing to not report domestic violence instances will continue to grow.  We must look at the laws around domestic violence and see where change can be made so that women, and men, and all people, feel comfortable to come forward in domestic violence situations.

Keywords: domestic violence, intimate partner violence, reporting, laws, United States

The Social Determinants and Cultural Barriers in Obtaining a Mammography Screening for Southeast Asian Immigrant Women in Los Angeles: An Exploratory Sequential Study

Saajidah Abideen

ABSTRACT: Mammogram screenings are X-rays of the breasts used to detect early indicators of breast abnormalities such as cancerous bumps. According to the American Cancer’s Society (2023), women starting from the age of 45 are urged to regularly conduct annual mammogram screenings.  With the early detection of cancerous masses, patients are able to catch breast cancer in earlier stages before metastasis. The leading cause of cancer death in Asian American women is breast cancer. However,  compared to all other racial groups, Asian Americans has the lowest rates of mammogram screenings. Without regular mammogram screenings, there is an increased risk of developing breast cancer undetected. When it is eventually detected, a late screening may result in the need for more  invasive treatments and a severe diagnosis. In order to tackle the social determinants and barriers for Asian American women, to obtain regular mammography screenings, Asian Americans cannot be seen as a homogenous group. Often times research studies exclude populations of South East Asian ethnicities, the immigrant population from these countries, and generalize results to all existing Asian American ethnic groups. This solely focuses on the racial identity of patients, but glosses over several health determinants unique to each Asian ethnicity such as income, immigrant status, and education level. Through this exploratory sequential study, both qualitative and quantitative data will be collected to identify the social determinants and cultural barriers Southeast Asian Immigrant women, in Los Angeles, face. Results will set a foundational baseline for public health professionals, explore how to tackle these barriers, and increase mammography screening rates for Southeast Asian immigrant women. 

Aspects Of Mental Health and the African American Community

Yordanos Berhane

ABSTRACT: From institutionalized discrimination to stigma, the Black community have faced many challenges to receive much-needed support and treatment for their mental illnesses. The main question revolves around whether increased awareness and accessibility to mental health resources impacts the quality of life for African Americans. The proposed study addresses three main obstacles that hinder African Americans from seeking help: stigma around having mental illness,historical atrocities done to African Americans by the healthcare field and the effects these injustices have on African people Americans ‘ decision to receive care. The anticipated outcome is increased awareness will result in greater willingness to accept treatment quickly leading to an overall better quality of life.

Renal Cell Carcinoma: The Impact of Patience Experience within the Diagnosis Process, a Qualitative Study

Isabella M. Humphries

ABSTRACT: Cancer is known to be the second leading cause of death in the United States of America. More often than not, uncommon types of cancer are overlooked. Renal Cell Carcinoma (RCC) occurs in fewer patients than well-known cancer types such as breast cancer or colorectal cancer. However, RCC is a brutal cancer that results in a minuscule number of survivors and takes lives away from loved ones far too early. Although RCC is less frequent than other forms of cancer, no effective screening methods have been implemented to diagnose RCC prior to a metastatic stage. The lack of a screening method could be attributed to the survival rates RCC has. This research proposal will explore the patient experience of RCC patients. Cancer patients are usually viewed as their disease first and not as a person first. Except, the patient knows themselves the best. Our research was designed to humanize cancer patients to better understand how traditional medicine may have failed them prior to diagnosis. RCC patients cannot advocate for themselves in a system that is not currently made to support the detection of their disease. Our end goal for this research is to create a tool that will be better at detecting RCC while the cancer is in its early stages. 

An Intervention on Free and Accessible Prenatal Care for Black Mothers in Low-Income Neighborhoods

Sinit Ogbagaber

ABSTRACT: Inequities in maternal healthcare, especially for Black and Hispanic women, are a serious issue that is killing many lives. The United States has a relatively high prevalence of negative maternal mortality; 700 women pass away during pregnancy or within a year of giving birth, and two out of every three of these deaths might have been avoided. The socioeconomic status, lack of access to prenatal care, poor medical care, underlying health issues (such as obesity, diabetes, and heart disease), socioeconomic level, and persistent stress this population endures all contribute to its increased vulnerability. Some women decide against getting prenatal care because there are barriers that make it harder for them to get it. Since few people are aware that this is an issue that is happening, our community may take action to try and lower these statistics by first raising awareness to the issue. We would achieve this by considering potential laws that would ensure that everyone received the same level of treatment. This study aims to ascertain how having optimal care prior to, during, and after pregnancy may affect the maternal mortality rate. 

Eating Disorder Symptoms Associated with Cultural Shifts in East Asian Cultures versus Western Culture

Mary Kapitonenko

ABSTRACT: This essay discusses the presentation of Anorexia Nervosa (AN) symptoms in Chinese and Japanese cultures versus North American culture. It highlights the importance of recognizing eating disorders in more diverse populations than previously studied and understanding how sociocultural factors influence the development of these disorders. The symptoms of AN are explored through a cultural lens while comparing the varying symptoms against the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders. Noticing the symptomatic differences of AN in each culture shows that the DSM-5 diagnostic criteria of Anorexia Nervosa is not universal in all countries or cultures. The compulsion for thinness and body dysmorphia is a western-bound cultural symptom of Anorexia Nervosa that is not found in Chinese or Japanese sufferers. There is an increased need for mental health and medical professionals to acknowledge cultural influences when diagnosing and treating eating disorders.

Panthera Latitudinal Ranges Increase Over Time

Molly Elise Biedscheid

ABSTRACT: The explanations for the latitudinal diversity gradient (LDG), the increase of species from the equator to the poles, have long been debated by scientists for over a century. How this has affected different genera is still not highly researched. To inspect this concept further, the correlation between the big cat genus Panthera’s fossil age and the latitudinal range was examined to see if the hypothesis that the older a fossil is, the longer its latitudinal range will be due to the “out of the tropics” theory that species disperse from the tropics over time and several other hypotheses. A linear regression test was performed to determine the correlation coefficient and the significance level between data points. The results of the linear regression test were found to be significant, meaning that as Panthera fossils’ age increases, so do their latitudinal ranges. These tests further support the “out of the tropics” theory, meaning the LDG does indeed exist. 

Keywords: Panthera, Latitudinal Diversity Gradient, Latitudinal Ranges, Linear Regression, Out of the tropics


The Progression of HIV and AIDS

Brittany Howell

ABSTRACT: Since HIV was contracted by a human from a chimpanzee in the 1800s, more than 84.2 million people have been infected with HIV and 40.1 million have died from AIDS (5). Though this virus is powerful and has shown its ability to take over a portion of the population around the world with continuously increasing rates, different steps like PrEP and PEP have been shown to decrease the rates as a preventive step. PrEP and PEP are both medications that can be taken for either pre-exposure or post exposure to HIV. With the evolution of medicine and the virus continuing to shift with science over time, the goal is to one day create a cure to prevent HIV and AIDS. 

A Climate Change Adaptation Assessment of the State of Washington: Industrial Hemp & Building the Evergreen State of our Future

Loren Herrera

ABSTRACT: This Adaptation Assessment of the State of Washington is intended to highlight the great potential of industrial hemp as an agronomic defense powerhouse against climate change, helping humanity transition away from the long-exhausted use of fossil fuel. In theory, Washington with its total cropland considered, has the potential to sequester over 28 million tonnes of CO2e annually. That is, if Washington were to incorporate industrial hemp into its already existing crop cycles, statewide. Furthermore, industrial hemp has a myriad of known uses and potential uses, including both hemp-based plastics and fuel. However, given the public perception of hemp and its controversial history in the United States, there simply remains a lack of research in this field of study and consequently the potential of industrial hemp remains yet to be fully recognized, let alone realized. Washington can potentially change that (if it can meet the moment) but it must start from the top down with good policy, and urgent implementation.


Systematic Analysis of the Quasar Properties and Variability of Extremely-High Velocity Outflow Quasars in the Sloan Digital Sky Survey

Easton Pierce, Alex Vong, Abby Wang, Cora DeFrancisco, Anish Rijal, Tzitzi Romo Pérez, Mikel Charles, Wendy García Naranjo, Rachel Fulda, Veronica Powell, and Lorena Sanabria

ABSTRACT: Active Galactic Nuclei host a super massive black hole surrounded by in-falling gas in the form of an accretion disk. The most luminous of them, called quasars, regularly present outflowing winds, observed as absorption in their spectra. These winds may play a large role in galactic and black hole evolution. Extremely High Velocity Outflows (EHVOs), which are outflows with speeds of > 10% the speed of light, are the least understood type of these outflows.

We present the preliminary results on the first systematic study on EHVO quasar properties and variability of these extreme outflows in the 16th data release (DR16) of the Sloan Digital Sky Survey. Of the 98 quasars with EHVOs discovered in the DR16, 51 cases were inspected for variability because they had multiple observations in other data releases. We find that 47% of them show variability. Velocity and depth changes were both observed via the shifting of our absorption and the disappearance and appearance of EHVOs respectively. Of the 98 quasars with EHVOs, we have values of physical properties, such as bolometric luminosity, black hole mass and Eddington ratio, for 69 cases. We find that quasars with EHVOs exhibit larger values of their bolometric luminosity and Eddington ratio when compared to Broad Absorption Line Quasi-Stellar Objects (BALQSOs) and non-BAL parent sample quasars, while the black hole mass parameter does not show significant differences. 
BALQSO: Broad Absorption Line Quasi-Stellar Object. A quasar that exhibits a Broad Absorption Line (BAL) in its spectrum. 
BAL: Broad Absorption Line. Caused by a gas cloud around the black hole absorbing a large range of wavelengths and is identified by an absorption trough or dip that is at least 2000 km s-1 in width.
Continuum: The distribution of energy at different wavelengths of light. Quasars follow a power law continuum, where the intensity of light instead follows a power law which skews higher intensity towards the shorter wavelengths. The continuum is used as a baseline to measure absorption and emission, i.e. dips below the continuum are measured as absorption and peaks above are measured as emission.
EHVO: Extremely High Velocity Outflow, gas outflowing from around the quasar at more than 10% the speed of light. These outflows can be identified by absorption of CIV in their spectrum; this CIV absorption shows up as a trough in the continuum shifted at least 10% the speed of light from the CVI emission line.
Flux: The amount of light energy our instruments receive per second.
Parent sample: A larger group or sample from which a smaller group or sample is drawn. A parent sample of BALQSOs would be quasars, as all BALQSOs are quasars but not all quasars are BALQSOs. BALQSOs are a subset of quasars.
Quasar: Extremely luminous objects caused by the friction of gas falling into a black hole.

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