Combinatorial blocking of immunosuppressive molecules, PD1 and CTLA4 as an anti-melanoma immunotherapeutic strategy

Georgina Kolcun Immune checkpoint blockade has proved to be an auspicious therapeutic strategy in the field of cancer immunotherapy. Immune checkpoints are points at which the immune system may either stimulate or inhibit its immune response. The immune system may feel the need to heighten its response at the threat of foreign molecules and in […]

The Impact of Intrauterine Nutrition and Epigenetic Modifications on the Development of Obesity and Type II Diabetes

Ammad Khan Introduction.  Nutrition, especially early dietary exposures, plays a critical role in a person’s health throughout their life1.It has been substantiated that external factors can cause cell type-dependent epigenetic changes including those that are commonly attributed to obesity and diabetes2,9,10. Obesity, defined as a BMI greater than 30, has been shown to increase the […]

The role of the Keap1/Nrf2 signaling pathway in the pathogenesis of non-small cell lung cancer and induction of cancer treatment resistance

Allen Jacob  Introduction. Lung Cancer has been identified by the National Cancer Institute of the NIH as the leading cause of mortality among all cancers in the United States, with an estimated 155,870 deaths in 2017 alone. Non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) encompasses 85% of lung cancer diagnoses, and a normal pathway that is often […]

The Role of the Gut Microbiome in Mediating Obesity

Connie Hsiao  Introduction.  Obesity is a condition characterized by excessive adipose tissue and increases an individual’s risk for health, social and mental issues. Obesity is a major issue in the United States, where more than one-third of Americans are clinically obese (BMI ≥ 30 kg/m2).1 Environmental and genetic factors both affect an individual’s propensity for […]

The Mechanism of Antisense Oligonucleotides as a Therapeutic Option for Spinal Muscular Atrophy

Arko Ghosh  Introduction: Spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) is a genetic neurodegenerative disease that is characterized by lower motor neuron loss and muscle denervation, which can result in quadriplegia, respiratory failure and ultimately death1-2. SMA has an incidence of approximately 1 in 6,000 to 1 in 10,000, and as such, is one of the most common […]

Therapeutic role of HDAC4 inhibition in the treatment of Huntington’s disease

Kelly Flynn Introduction. Huntington’s disease (HD) is an autosomal dominant neurodegenerative disorder caused by a CAG trinucleotide repeat expansion in the Huntingtin (HTT) gene encoding the huntingtin protein. The HTT mutation results in an accumulation of misfolded proteins leading to neuronal dysfunction and cell death.1-4  HD is clinically characterized by a combination of motor disturbances, cognitive […]

The Role of Gut Microbiome Bacteria in the Pathogenesis of Autism Spectrum Disorder

Lindsey Farmer  Introduction Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) includes a range of developmental neuro-behavioral disorders characterized by restricted and repetitive behavior, abnormal social interaction and impaired communication1,2,7. 1 in 68 people in the US have ASD, and the prevalence has increased over 10 fold in the last 40 years, representing some of the greatest burden of […]

Bone Morphogenetic Protein 2 for Enhanced Bone Healing: Advantages, Disadvantages, and Emerging Research

Joshua L. Crapps Introduction. Delayed union and nonunion bone fractures fail to fuse by 6 or 9 months post-injury, respectively, with no progression for an additional 3 months in those classified as nonunion.1 Of the 7.9 million annual fractures in the United States, 600,000 exhibit delayed union and 100,000 progress to nonunion.1-3 The current standard […]

Using mechanical stimuli to induce stem cell differentiation towards endothelial and smooth muscle cells for use in vascular grafts

Scott D. Cardone Introduction. Cardiovascular disease (CVD) is the leading cause of death for both men and women in the United States. With 1 in 4 deaths resulting from CVD, the American Heart Association estimates its annual health care cost to be $316 billion.1 Often, a patient will need a surgical operation to bypass an […]

Dysregulation of DNA Methylation Profiles in Neural Stem Cells: A Consequence of Ethanol Exposure

Sasha Burrowes Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (FAS) and Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (FASD) are leading non-genetic causes of neurodevelopmental disabilities in the US and worldwide1. Acting as a teratogen, ethanol has been shown to drastically change the developmental course of maturing neural stem cells in treated mouse NSCs via alterations in DNA methylation, histone modifications, and […]