Lab-On-A-Chip Device for Disease Diagnostics

RNA-based viruses and bacteria have been sources of large-scale epidemics and pandemics, most notably Ebola, SARS, influenza, hepatitis C, HIV, and the Zika Virus. Normal detection of these biological agents requires multiple lab processes. This project aims to develop a fully integrated lab-on-a-chip device to accomplish this.

Extracellular phosphorylation of a receptor tyrosine kinase controls synaptic localization of NMDA receptors and regulates pathological pain

Modification of protein function by phosphorylation controls many aspects of cellular function and signaling. Interestingly, the first evidence for phosphoproteins came from the observation that the secreted milk protein, casein, contained phosphate, suggesting that phosphorylation can occur in the extracellular space.

Elucidating the Ticking of an In Vitro Circadian Clockwork

Circadian clocks are self-sustained biochemical oscillators that underlie daily rhythms of sleep/waking, metabolic activity, gene expression, and many other biological processes. Their properties include temperature compensation, a time constant of approximately 24 h, and high precision.

Quantification of Atherosclerosis

Atherosclerosis and subsequent cardiovascular disease causes nearly one-third of all deaths in the world. Unfortunately, atherosclerosis commonly remains asymptomatic for decades, and is properly diagnosed only after a severe, life-threatening cardiac event. Thus, a portable, low‐cost tattoo‐based biosensor for the non‐invasive self‐diagnosis and quantification of atherosclerosis was developed.

Cell Line to Search for Osteosarcoma Agents

Osteosarcoma, a bone tumor of childhood, is lethal when unresponsive to chemotherapy. ER stress response, a cell survival mechanism that is triggered upon exposure to stressors such as chemotherapy, is one of the ways a tumor becomes resistant to chemotherapy. This project explores novel methods of producing a noncytotoxic EGFP-ATF6 construct to signal Endoplasmic Reticulum stress response.

Translational Genomics of Triple-Negative Breast Cancer

Triple-negative breast cancer (TNBC) does not respond to receptor targeted treatments because they do not possess the ligands to bind to these receptors. Thus, more research needs to be explored in terms of the translational modifications that genes undergo during this disease.

Diabetic Retinopathy via Hypertensive Modeling

This interdisciplinary study develops a novel prognostic for Diabetic Retinopathy (DR) by modeling hypertensive changes at arterial-venous (AV) crossings

Cancer Stem Cells in Oral Squamous Cell Carcinoma

Oral Squamous Cell Carcinoma (OSCC) is a cancer of the mouth epithelium with an annual incidence rate in the US of nearly 48,000 cases annually and a 5-year survival rate of only 65%. Cancer stem cells (CSCs) are believed to be responsible for progression of OSCC. The project’s main goal is to observe the effect of Wnt/β-catenin signaling inhibition on oral squamous cell carcinoma.

Unraveling Complexities of Alzheimer’s Disease

Alzheimer’s is a neurodegenerative disease characterized by the formation of extracellular amyloid-beta (abeta or AB) plaques and intracellular tau plaques. This experiment explores whether the presence of normal tau-441 protein augments AB-42 aggregation.

Gene Involvement in Sensorineural Hearing Loss

Sensorineural hearing loss is a serious impairment that deprives more than 360 million people worldwide from one of their vital senses. Though common, this medical disability has no cure yet. However, gene therapy is an emerging treatment that is being developed to tackle the root causes of this morbidity.

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