Kayla Davis, M.S.
Education: Bachelor of Arts in chemistry and Bachelor of Science in biochemistry and philosophy (December 2019)
Master of Science in professional studies from SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry
McNair Project: Fighting Cancer with Intelligent Peptide Design (2018)
Mentor: Stefan Bossmann, Ph.D.
Nanotechnology is quickly becoming incorporated within the practicing medical field, particularly the employment of rationally designed peptides and anti-cancer drugs in collusion to form nano-sponge delivery systems for the purpose of combating disease in vivo. These delivery systems have become a key innovation of oncological medicine, for they allow for biologically occurring peptides to act as carriers for cancer-killing peptides, plasmids, nanoparticles, or small molecules drugs that would have otherwise not been possible to deliver to tumorous areas of the body through natural pathways. The following research reports upon a project that combined a tumor-homing peptide with modified peptide derivative and a rhodamine linked terminating peptide to enable formation of nano-sponge DNA-transfection delivery system. This delivery system is being created with the purpose of being infused with DNA-transfecting plasmid in order to change the genetic code of the cancer cell to permit immune activation.