Dempski, Robert E.
This project will focus on using channelrhodopsin-2, a light activated ion channel, to induce apoptosis, programmed cell death. It will begin with the transformation of a plasmid containing a fusion protein including channelrhodopsin-2 and green fluorescent protein (GFP) along with a signal sequence to direct the fusion protein to the mitochondria of HEK-293 cells. Next it will be necessary to check the cells to make sure the fusion protein is in the mitochondria by comparing it to known probes, such as MitoTracker Deep Red FM using confocal microscopy. Following this, a blue light will be applied to the sample to check for calcium influx which will indicate that cytochrome C has been released from the inner membrane of the mitochondria.
Worcester Polytechnic Institute
Major Qualifying Project
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Chemistry and Biochemistry
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