The American Society for Microbiology (ASM) has selected University of New Mexico senior Lory Henderson as a 2011 award recipient of the ASM Undergraduate Research Fellowship.

Henderson, a student in the Initiative to Maximize Student Diversity (IMSD) program in the biology department, is studying how human visitation and nutrient levels in caves affect the production of antibiotics by bacteria that live in caves. The title of Henderson's research project is "Ecological Conditions and Their Role in Antibiotic Production in Cave Bacteria."

She also recently received a research grant from the Cave Conservancy of the Virginias, who said that her proposal "was head and shoulders" above all the other applications, according to Dr. Diana Northrup, Henderson's mentor.

This year, 68 applications were received and 39 were awarded. Of the 39 awardees, 17 students were from doctoral/research universities—extensive institutions, two students were from doctoral/research universities—intensive institutions, 14 students were from a master's college and university institutions, four students were from baccalaureate colleges, one student from balanced arts & sciences/professions, some graduate coexistence, and one student from a comprehensive doctoral institution.

This fellowship is aimed at highly competitive students who wish to pursue graduate careers (Ph.D. or M.D./Ph.D.) in microbiology. Each fellow receives up to a $4,000 stipend, a two-year ASM student membership, and funding for travel expenses to the ASM Presentation Institute and 112th ASM General Meeting. Fellows have the opportunity to conduct full time summer research at their institution with an ASM mentor and present their research results at the 112th ASM General Meeting in San Francisco, Calif. if their abstract is accepted.

Headquartered in Washington, DC, the American Society for Microbiology is the oldest and largest single biological membership organization, with more than 40,000 members worldwide.

For more information on the fellowship, visit American Society for Microbiology.

Media Contact: Steve Carr (505) 277-1821; e-mail: