SEP's Potluri Honored as 4.0 Summa Cum Laude NSM Graduate

SEP’s Potluri Honored as 4.0 Summa Cum Laude NSM Graduate
Potluri Heading to Baylor College of Medicine

Three NSM students, Varun Potluri, Christopher Huynh and Nhon Le, were honored as NSM’s 4.0 summa cum laude graduates at NSM’s Convocation on May 14. Potluri was active in the Scholar Enrichment Program where he helped fellow students improve their understanding of various science topics.

Now, he is headed to medical school at Baylor College of Medicine.

Varun Potluri – From Norwalk, Conn., to Corpus Christi to Houston

Varun PotluriPotluri, a double major in biology and business management, continued a family tradition by coming to UH. His older brother and sister also graduated from UH’s NSM.

He wanted to be a doctor since 9th grade and attended DeBakey High School for Health Professions.

“I was accepted into Houston Premedical Academy, an eight-year bachelor’s/M.D. program that is a partnership involving DeBakey, UH and Baylor College of Medicine,” he said. “Being awarded a Tier One Scholarship made UH the obvious choice for me.”

Potluri participated in UH’s Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship and worked in the lab of Jokubas Ziburkus, associate professor of biology and biochemistry. There he studied cortical spreading depression, a potential mechanism of migraine.

“It is a phenomenon that is pretty prevalent, but no one knows how it occurs. If the mechanism can be defined, it may lead to better ways to target migraines and treatment,” he said.

He also spent a semester doing neuroimmunology research at M.D. Anderson Cancer Center.

Potluri participated in NSM’s Scholar Enrichment Program, serving for four years as a workshop facilitator for Chemistry 1 and 2 and Biochemistry. He was also a tutor in UH’s Learning Support Services.

“When you start teaching, you really start to understand the subject at a different level,” he said. “I learned so much as a facilitator.”

- Kathy Major, College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics