Expression of PDZ domain 1 of the Scribble Polarity Complex

Infection by high-risk human papillomavirus (HPV) is the leading cause of cervical cancers. This study establishes a protocol for the expression of a host-cell protein domain targeted by HPV. This will be valuable for future research into the cellular mechanism of HPV and the development of therapies against cervical cancer in infected individuals.



Degradation of pRb by Retrovirally Infected Cell Lines

The human papillomavirus (HPV) contains hundreds of serotypes that have been divided into low-risk versus high-risk variants. Whereas low-risk serotypes have been shown to cause benign skin lesions, the high risk serotypes are associated with various types of cancer, including cervical cancer. Research has demonstrated that high-risk HPV encodes an oncoprotein E7 that binds to and degrades the tumor suppressor retinoblastoma protein pRb. This project investigated the use of retroviral infection to establish a stable cell line to be characterized via western blot protein analysis.


Fate of Acrolein, an Agricultural Biocide, Overtime

Acrolein is an efficient agricultural herbicide within irrigation canal ditches and a biocide within oilfield water-flood systems. The fate of acrolein is typically attributed to evaporation, however, it is found that acrolein also dimerizes in water. This hetero-Diels-alder product is stable over an extended period of time, thus losing its original function as an effective biocide and herbicide. Various 1D/2D NMR and GC-EIMS techniques were used to elucidate the structure of said dimerization product, found to be 5,6-dihydro-2H-pyran-3-carbaldehyde. 


Visualizing the Degradation of pRb by the High-Risk HPV Protein E7

The oncoprotein E7 coded for by the human papillomavirus (HPV) is known to degrade the tumor suppressor retinoblastoma protein (pRb). Transient transfections of a plasmid coding for the E7 protein were not effective at visualizing degradation of pRb. Although transient transfection would be efficient in visualizing pRb degradation, the lack of success makes more reliable methods, such as the use of retroviruses, necessary.


Cancer Proliferation Mediated by Tumor-Associated Macrophages (TAMs)

Macrophages are a type of immune cell present in the tumor micro environment that can be polarized by the cancer cells to aid in the growth and proliferation of the tumor. The goal of this study was to decipher the communication between glioblastoma cells and their environment by determining the pathway by which macrophages are polarized toward the M2 (pro-tumor) phenotype.


Toward the Synthesis of Unprecedented Transition-Metal Nitride Molecules

Transition metal nitride clusters are of interest because of their novel structures and potential magnetic and electronic properties. In our search for synthetic routes to these clusters, we have discovered adducts with the formula s[Cl3Mn·N(SnMe3)3]1− and (Pr4N)4[Fe14N8(NSnMe3)4Cl12]. The synthesis and characterization of different salts of these adducts will be presented.


Plasmid-Mediated Transfer of Antibiotic Resistance Genes within Biofilms

The objective of this study was to determine transfer frequencies of multidrug resistance plasmids under different conjugation conditions: liquid cultures, batch biofilms, and drip-flow biofilms. Generalized linear modeling showed no significant conjugation efficiency difference at different exposure times; however, drip-flow biofilms showed a significantly greater efficiency than the other conditions.



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