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Theses/Dissertations

2013

Biology

Syracuse University Honors Program Capstone Projects

Articles 1 - 11 of 11

Full-Text Articles in Life Sciences

Controlling Bacterial Persister Cells With Low Level Electric Currents, Henry Lars Peterson May 2013

Controlling Bacterial Persister Cells With Low Level Electric Currents, Henry Lars Peterson

Syracuse University Honors Program Capstone Projects

Bacterial persister cells present a growing concern as they inherit the ability to tolerate high concentrations of antibiotics and repopulate after an antibiotic treatment leading to chronic diseases. Pseudomonas aeruginosa causes many human infections including skin infections and those associated with burn injuries, and implanted medical devices, and are associated with Cystic Fibrosis. Recently, the Ren Lab developed a novel approach to eliminate persister cells of P. aeruginosa, including those in biofilms, using low level electric currents. To evaluate the safety of this method and to better understand how the underlying elements, this study focused on the cytotoxicity of treatments ...


Developing An Experimental System For Studying Early Events In Speciation In Drosophila, Maria Poplawska May 2013

Developing An Experimental System For Studying Early Events In Speciation In Drosophila, Maria Poplawska

Syracuse University Honors Program Capstone Projects

Speciation occurs when two populations of a species can no longer reproduce, either because of (1) pre-mating reproductive isolation, for example, populations having non-overlapping habitats, or evolving different courtship behaviors, or (2) post-mating pre-zygotic (PMPZ) isolation, where mechanical (e.g., incompatible differences in genitalia), or gametic (e.g., sperm and egg become incompatible) differences renders the strains unable to produce offspring. Previous work has suggested that when incipient species begin to experience reproductive isolation, a phenomenon called “reinforcement” can accelerate the process, by the rapid evolution of new pre- mating or PMPZ barriers. While the occurrence of reinforcement has been ...


Metal-Citrate Transport In The Gram-Positive Bacterium Kineococcus Radiotolerans, Eleanor Robertson May 2013

Metal-Citrate Transport In The Gram-Positive Bacterium Kineococcus Radiotolerans, Eleanor Robertson

Syracuse University Honors Program Capstone Projects

Little is known about metal-citrate transport in Gram-positive bacteria. Previously, all such transporters identified have belonged to the citrate-metal hydrogen symport (CitMHS) family. Presented herein is our research on the predicted metal-citrate transport system in the Gram-positive bacteria Kineococcus radiotolerans. Given the high alkaline natural environment of this organism, it was hypothesized such a metal-citrate transporter may utilize an antiport mechanism, which to date has not been observed. Herein it is shown that K. radiotolerans has a calcium-citrate transporter. Preliminary results also support the hypothesis that this transporter operates through hydroxide antiport, rather than hydrogen symport, making this the first ...


The Role Of Cell Adhesion Molecules In Cyst Breakdown And Follicle Formation In The Mouse Neonatal Ovary, Dana Senderoff May 2013

The Role Of Cell Adhesion Molecules In Cyst Breakdown And Follicle Formation In The Mouse Neonatal Ovary, Dana Senderoff

Syracuse University Honors Program Capstone Projects

The total number of oocytes that an individual will have available for reproduction is defined at birth. This established oocyte pool is essential to fertility, as a female loses oocytes throughout her life and never makes more. In the mouse, germ cells form in the fetus and migrate to the gonad, where they undergo mitosis and are referred to as oogonia. These cells are in germ line cysts, which are clusters of germ cells connected by intercellular bridges that form by incomplete cytokinesis. Germ cells in the human also develop in clusters with characteristics of cysts. The cells within the ...


A Novel Therapeutic Approach In Breast And Hematopoietic Cancers: Inhibition Of Sh2-Domain Containing Inositol 5' Phosphatase (Ship), Amamda Balch May 2013

A Novel Therapeutic Approach In Breast And Hematopoietic Cancers: Inhibition Of Sh2-Domain Containing Inositol 5' Phosphatase (Ship), Amamda Balch

Syracuse University Honors Program Capstone Projects

Aberrant hyperactivation of the phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI3K) cell-signaling pathway, one of the most prominent cell growth, proliferation and survival pathways in the human body, has been observed in many forms of cancer. Upon deregulation, this pathway can facilitate the evasion of programmed cell death, the stimulation of autonomous growth, and the evasion of regular growth-inhibitory signals. While it was initially believed that the dephosphorylation activity of lipid phosphatases served to counteract the pathway by hydrolyzing phosphatidylinositol(3,4,5)trisphosphate (PtdIns(3,4,5)P3) to phosphatidylinositol(4,5)bisphosphate (PtdIns(4,5)P2), emerging evidence suggests that ...


Analysis Of Arp 2/3complex Dependent Actin Assembly In Live Fission Yeast Cells, Hannah Bellinger May 2013

Analysis Of Arp 2/3complex Dependent Actin Assembly In Live Fission Yeast Cells, Hannah Bellinger

Syracuse University Honors Program Capstone Projects

In yeast and other organisms, endocytosis is dependent upon Arp2/3 complex-mediated actin assembly into endocytic actin patches, a highly organized process involving signaling molecules and regulatory proteins. The goal of this study is to determine the roles of three Arp2/3 complex activators Pan1, Myo1, and Wsp1, which bind Arp2/3 complex via their Central-Acidic (CA) domains, in stimulating actin patch assembly in fission yeast. To assess the contribution of these proteins to actin assembly, we performed quantitative image analysis of actin patch dynamics by tracking the GFP-tagged actin binding protein fimbrin Fim1 in Pan1, Myo1 and Wsp1 mutants ...


The Use Of P53-Derived Stapled Peptides As Affinity Isolation Reagents, Kathryn Margaret Headley May 2013

The Use Of P53-Derived Stapled Peptides As Affinity Isolation Reagents, Kathryn Margaret Headley

Syracuse University Honors Program Capstone Projects

The transcription factor p53 can induce apoptosis and cell cycle arrest in response to cellular distress. Cancer cells often display increased cell survival. In most cases, this is due to a p53-related defect, such as mutation, deletion, degradation, or sequestration. HDM2 and HDMX are homologous proteins that regulate the function of p53, and their over-expression can lead to an ineffective p53 response. Various inhibitors, including hydrocarbon stabilized alpha-helices of p53 (SAH-p53s), have been developed to target HDM2 and HDMX and restore functionality to the p53 pathway. It has been recently found that SAH-p53 factors also elicit cell death responses in ...


Characterization Of Dap2 (Defense-­‐Associated Aspartic Protease-­‐2) In Arabidopsis Thaliana And Determining Its Role In Plant Defense Responses, Kemardo Kitaro Henry May 2013

Characterization Of Dap2 (Defense-­‐Associated Aspartic Protease-­‐2) In Arabidopsis Thaliana And Determining Its Role In Plant Defense Responses, Kemardo Kitaro Henry

Syracuse University Honors Program Capstone Projects

Plants defend themselves from invading pathogens by coordinating activity of several plant defense-­‐associated genes. Defense-­‐Associated Aspartic Protease-­‐1 (DAP1) gene of Arabidopsis encodes for an atypical aspartic protease with a putative proteolytic activity. The DAP1 is a negative regulator of plant immunity and the transgenic plants ectopically expressing this genes support pathogen growth and pathogenicity. The Arabidopsis genome has another putative protese that has ~75% homology to DAP1 present in close proximity and therefore was named DAP2. Here, I describe the role of the DAP2 gene in plant defense responses. Two independent knockout dap2 mutants are found to ...


Vitamin B12-Based Bioconjugate Probes For In Vitro And In Vivo Imaging, Anna Kahkoska May 2013

Vitamin B12-Based Bioconjugate Probes For In Vitro And In Vivo Imaging, Anna Kahkoska

Syracuse University Honors Program Capstone Projects

Cancer is the second leading cause of death in the United States. This year, an estimated 577,190 Americans will die as a result of this family of diseases. Finding cancer at its most treatable stage gives patients the greatest chance of recovery; novel imaging agents that target primary and metastasized tumors offer hope for improved prognoses in the future. Based on the hypothesis that vitamin B12 (B12) and its association with specific transport proteins could offer selective access to cancer cell lines, a series of B12-based imaging agents were synthesized, characterized, and assayed for both in vitro and in ...


Influence Of Genetic Variation On Birth Defects In Caenorhabditis Elegans, Daniel Robert Kepple May 2013

Influence Of Genetic Variation On Birth Defects In Caenorhabditis Elegans, Daniel Robert Kepple

Syracuse University Honors Program Capstone Projects

In my Renee Crown Honors Capstone project, I studied how genetic variation influences birth defects that cause death in C. elegans embryos. I performed high-throughput hatching assay experiments of recombinant inbred advance intercross lines of C. elegans. These lines are genetically distinct from each other. I found significant variation in birth defects causing embryo death in these recombinant inbred advanced intercross lines. My results give evidence that gene interaction may play a significant role in causing birth defects resulting in death. My data also provides a starting point for studies making statistical arguments linking these birth defects to specific genetic ...


Investigation Of Sin-3 Histone Deacetylase Complex In Caenorhabditis Elegans, Maria Kontos May 2013

Investigation Of Sin-3 Histone Deacetylase Complex In Caenorhabditis Elegans, Maria Kontos

Syracuse University Honors Program Capstone Projects

Chromatin is the combination of DNA and the proteins binding to DNA in the cell nucleus. The primary proteins associated with chromatin are histones, which compact the DNA. The DNA strand wraps around the histone octamer core complex forming a structure called the nucleosome. Posttranslational modifications of histones alter chromatin structure. Generally speaking, acetylated histones are associated with active gene expression whereas deacetylated histones are associated with repressed gene expression. Histone deacetylases, which function as a multi protein complex, remove acetyl groups resulting in altered DNA-histone binding affinities. One major histone deacetylase (HDAC) complex is the SIN-3 HDAC complex. SIN-3 ...