Stearns-Kurosawa – Infectious Disease/Inflammation
Options: Volunteer Basis, Potential for UROP Funding, Potential for Work-Study
Enterohemorrhagic E. coli bacteria are the leading cause of acute kidney failure in otherwise healthy children as well as global food-borne illness. They secret two toxins, Stx1 and Stx2, and in some cases infection can progress to a clinical syndrome known as hemolytic uremic syndrome. This syndrome involves inappropriate blood coagulation, tissue damage and widespread dysfunction of endothelial cells lining blood vessels. Understanding how this dysfunction occurs is vital to creating therapies. How are the toxins and the inflammation they induce connected to coagulation and endothelial dysfunction? What bacteria virulence factors work with the toxins to cause tissue damage?
GOALS: The goals of this project are to better understand how the bacteria and Stx, along with markers of tissue damage, lead to increased inflammation and coagulation pro! blems.
METHODS: Students will learn basic laboratory safety and bench techniques, as well as basic methods in bacteriology (culture, plating), tissue culture, and sterile technique. More focused methods will include cell viability assays, western blots, qPCR, and primer design. They will be introduced to how to design and plan experiments, collect and analyze data, and present findings professionally.