Angeleque Hartt of the Bronx, N.Y., a biochemistry major in the Bates Class of 2014, is working with chemistry professor Jennifer Koviach-Côté to find a way to synthesize a plant-based compound with significant pharmaceutical potential. Ashitabaol A was isolated in 2010 from ashitaba, a plant native to Japan that has long been credited with healing qualities. Hartt is building "the foundation of the molecule," on which other structures will be built, says Koviach-Côté. "It's trial and error," adds Hartt, who aspires to become a doctor. "You find what works, you stick with that and you try something else to move you to the next step."