Vol. 20, No. 12

March 15, 2001

Undergrad from Ukraine publishes works on DNA research

When EAntipov, Eugeneugene Antipov first arrived in Wilmington from the Ukraine at the age of 17 to join his older sister Olga, he worked in landscaping, then washed cars, later becoming a technician at an automobile dealership.

Now, six years later, Antipov is working on DNA computations in the Undergraduate Research Program, with advisers Junghuei Chen, chemistry and biochemistry, and David Wood, computer and information sciences, who have joined forces to work on DNA computing projects.

A senior in chemical engineering, Antipov already has an impressive list of publications. He the author of five professional papers, including "A Max 1's Problem in DNA Computing via Genetic Algorithms," which he presented at the Ph.D. student workshop of the Genetic and Evolutionary Computation Conference in San Francisco and which was published in its proceedings.

With Chen, Wood and others, Antipov has published "DNA Computing Implementing Genetic Algorithms," in Preliminary Proceedings DIMACS (Discrete Mathematics and Theoretical Computer Science) Workshop on Evolution as Computation; "A DNA Implementation of the Max 1s Problem" in Proceedings of the 1999 Genetic and Evolutionary Computation Conference; "In Vitro selection for One Max DNA Evolutionary Computation in DNA Based Computers V:DIMACS Workshop; and "A Design for DNA Computation of the One Max Problem" in a special issue on Biomolecular Approaches to Soft Computing.

Because of the small size of its molecules and huge populations, DNA lends itself to different computation problems. In the laboratory, Antipov places DNA strands in a gelatin solution, applies electric fields and and using selection and breeding, alters and discards DNA strands to create new evolutionary generations through mutations and genetic crossovers.

Antipov is a Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) Scholar and received a stipend for his research programs in the summer and during Winter Session. Harold White, chemistry and biochemistry, who directs the UD HHMI program, calls Antipov's accomplishments "almost unprecedented for an undergraduate."

When he arrived in this country, Antipov described himself as a typical teenager who was not sure what he wanted to do, Both his parents had died, and he came to live with his older sister, who was studying engineering.

Looking back, he recalled, "I lucked out and won a green card in the lottery and was able to work."

Antipov had studied some English, and during the next few years he became more proficient in the language and began taking biology and other courses at Delaware Technical and Community College. He was admitted to UD's Honors Program as a sophomore.

Antiov said he plans to spend another year at UD so he can graduate with a double major in chemical engineering and in chemistry and biochemistry.

–Sue Moncure