Intelligence in the HTT Gene

By Daniel Walocha ‘19 Huntington’s Disease is caused by a trinucleotide repeat of the HTT gene. The wild type has a repeat ranging from 10 to 35, but beyond 39 repeats causes the disease characterized by significant impairments in the basal ganglia and neurodegeneration. The CAG repeats in the HTT gene cause the production of…

Long Non-Coding RNA NEAT1 Analysis

By Daniel Walocha ‘19 Long non-coding RNAs (lncRNAs) serve normal cell functions in growth, differentiation, and controlled cell death. The lncRNA’s are modulated in cancer cells to provide a pro-survival, oncogenic role in many different types of cancer. However, lncRNA’s have also been seen, when unchanged, to provide tumor suppressive activities in normal cells. Nuclear…

CD133’s Role in Esophageal Cancer Cells

By Daniel Walocha ‘19 CD133 is a biomarker for cancer stem cells (CSC) in esophageal squamous cell carcinomas (ESCC). Cancer cells have remarkable resistance to drugs and therapies, so discovering a potential therapeutic target to make the CSCs in ESCC more susceptible to treatment is of particular interest. Dr. Wen Xu et al. from Columbia…

EYA1 and its Overexpression in Colorectal Cancer Associated with Angiogenesis

By Daniel Walocha ‘19 Angiogenesis is the formation of blood vessels. Cancer cells release growth factors associated with the induction of angiogenesis. Newly formed blood vessels allow cancer cells to easily metastasize, making treatment and survivability difficult for tumors. Colorectal cells are the third leading cause of cancer deaths, so understanding potential therapeutic targets is…

Reactive Oxidative Species Sensitivity in Cancer

By Daniel Walocha ‘19 Cancer cells primarily use glycolysis to gain ATP and important intermediates for amino acid biosynthesis via the Warburg effect, even in the presence of readily available oxygen. This highlights a key distinction between cancer and normal cells: normal cells mainly utilize the electron transport chain for their ATP needs, while cancer…

Mucopolysaccharidoses Treatment with Gene Therapy

By Daniel Walocha ‘19 Muscopolysaccharidoses (MPS) is a lysosomal storage disorder which results from a deficiency of lysosomal enzymes. The lack of enzymes causes an accumulation of glycosaminoglycans that can lead to severe symptoms including heart disease, nervous system damage, and skeletal dysplasia. Enzyme replacement therapies, hematopoietic stem cell transplantation, and substrate reduction therapy are…