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Ten years of research experience including five years of graduate school synthesizing and characterizing polymers for biomedical applications and five years in a cancer biology research lab investigating pancreatic cancer. Major areas of experience, strengths and skills include: expertise in polymer synthesis and characterization, drug delivery, protein encapsulation, in vitro evaluation of novel drugs for pancreatic cancer therapy, development of serum diagnostic assays; strong written and verbal communication skills; ability to work in a multidisciplinary environment with a team-oriented perspective.
• Developed novel therapies against pancreatic cancer. Specifically, my projects involved investigating the ability of these therapies to target and downregulate the glycoprotein MUC4, which has been related to pancreatic cancer progression.
• Screened several natural-derived drugs for their anti-tumorigenic efficacy on in vitro experiments as well as on murine models. Thymoquinone, Graviola, Curcumin, and Basil gave promising results against pancreatic cancer.
• Developed a promising serum diagnostic assay for pancreatic cancer patients using Surface-Enhanced Raman Spectroscopy (SERS) technology, which has shown a superior performance over other conventional methods. Preliminary results were published two years ago and a following manuscript with promising results is under preparation.
• Designed novel biomaterial devices with unique characteristics for the delivery of protein vaccines. These were based on amphiphilic polyanhydrides that provided protein stabilization, enhanced adjuvanticity, and immune modulation.
• Involved in all the processing and characterization steps of the biomaterial, including monomer and polymer synthesis, fabrication of microspheres, evaluation of high throughput combinatorial libraries and in vitro studies to evaluate the potential of different chemistries for vaccine applications.
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