Punjabi Broadcaster Harpreet Singh’s Son Sukhmeet Completes Rare Research Stint


SURREY – Sukhmeet Singh Sachal, the son of Punjabi broadcaster Harpreet Singh, from Tamanawis Secondary in Surrey had the honour of participating in the 2011 High School Summer Research program conducted by the Heart and Stroke Foundation of BC and Yukon. He was the only candidate selected from Surrey, apart from nine other students from various cities across British Columbia and Yukon.

The students did research work for three weeks in the laboratories of various hospitals. They worked at St. Paul’s Hospital, Brain Research Centre, UBC Hospital, BC Cancer Research Institute and the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology.

The summer research program is held every year where students are given hands on training in research projects. The students gain an understanding of what is expected of a researcher and what their day-to-day routine entails. Sukhmeet Sachal worked in Dr. Honglin Luo’s lab at the iCAPTURE Centre in St. Paul’s Hospital. He aided in the extraction of proteins from HL-1 cells, a cardiac muscle cell line, and transgenic mice.  The research within the lab centered on the process of how the Coxsackievirus type B3 (CVB3) causes myocarditis, the inflammation of the heart muscle cells.

Sukhmeet assisted in common laboratory protocols for western blotting such as making polyacrylamide gels, loading samples and measuring protein concentrations.

On top of the research, the ten students also had a chance to slip away into a world outside research as they went dancing at Robson Square, and waited five hours in line for Harry Potter. “It was three weeks of fun, socialization, and knowledge!” said Sukhmeet. “Not only did I have a blast conducting research, but I also loved living at Gage Towers at UBC with nine other students and two chaperones. This was an experience that helped me gain a better understanding about the medical field. ”

To get accepted into this program, an extremely high criteria checklist was needed in academics as well as extra-curricular activities. On top of being a 4.0 GPA student, Sukhmeet still had time to join clubs inside and outside of school. Somehow Sukhmeet finds time at school to be a part of Student Planning Council, Global Awareness Club, iDEAS 36, Cure for Cancer Club, Debate and Speech Club. Outside of school, he is also on the Surrey Leadership Youth Council, Surrey Youth Stewardship Squad, City of Surrey Special Events Team, Community and Recreation Services team and many more.