Gabrielle (Gabby) Tender is a senior studying chemistry at Caltech. She was born in Albuquerque, NM and was raised in Bethesda, MD. During summers in high school, she worked at the Naval Research Laboratory, investigating electron transport in microbial fuel cells under the direction of Dr. Sarah Glaven. She spent half of her senior year working at the National Institutes of Health, researching tyrosyl-DNA phosphodiesterase inhibitors (potential chemotherapy agents) under the direction of Drs. Yves Pommier and Christophe Marchand.
While at Caltech, Gabby has spent four years doing research and is pursuing a senior thesis under the direction of Professor Dougherty. She is investigating ligand binding to nicotinic acetylcholine receptors. After freshman year, she spent a summer performing research at the University of Cambridge. Under the direction of Professor Sarah Lummis, she researched intramolecular interactions in ligand gated ion channels.
Through these research experiences, Gabby has published six peer-reviewed publications and presented her research at an international conference. In 2017, Gabby was awarded the Arie J. Haagen-Smit Memorial Award in recognition for her undergraduate work.
Outside of research, Gabby is passionate about community building and leadership as well as teaching and mentoring. While at Caltech, she has been deeply involved in student leadership and been a TA for three chemistry courses. She one day hopes to become a professor, combining these two passions with her love for research.
In graduate school, Gabby plans on studying chemical biology applied to human health. This field will allow her to apply chemical tools to study the underlying biological mechanisms driving human disease. She is particularly interested in using chemical biology to study celiac and other autoimmune diseases.