His goal was to determine the effects of Genestein – a phytoestrogen compound found in soy – on male reproductive development in mice.
Derstine’s studies confirmed the hypothesis that phytoestrogens have detrimental effects on sperm production and maturation. He discovered decreased numbers of mature spermatozoa, and increased numbers of immature sperm cells.
“Further research needs to be conducted to determine the relevance of these findings for humans,” he notes.
Continuing work in research
Currently Nate continues to work for EMU associate professor of chemistry, Dr. Matthew Siderhurst.
Siderhurst received a grant for research related to fruit-piercing moths at The Pacific Basin Agricultural Research Center in Hawaii.
Learning ‘what it takes to make real science happen’
“My relationships with both Dr. Miller and Dr. Siderhurst have been beneficial,” reflects Derstine.
“They trusted me so much and gave me autonomy to work on these projects. I’ve learned a lot about what it takes to make real science happen, while being given remarkable opportunities to apply the skills I’ve learned beyond college.”