Bachelor of Science in Biochemistry from Ramapo College of New Jersey
Dissertation Project:Delineating mechanisms by which hyperfibrinogemia promotes thrombosis
My project in Dr. Alisa Wolberg’s lab investigates the mechanisms by which elevated fibrinogen (hyperfibrinogenemia) leads to thrombosis. Our lab has shown that elevated fibrinogen is not just a biomarker of inflammation, but directly promotes thrombosis by shortening the time to vessel occlusion (TTO) and producing clots that resist thrombolysis. However, it is unclear if these properties are caused by changes in fibrin network density or fibrinogen-dependent platelet aggregation. To address this question, I am using recombinant fibrinogens with mutant functions and an in vivo thrombosis model of arterial thrombosis. Knowledge of the prothrombotic mechanisms caused by elevated fibrinogen is important in directing patient therapy and minimizing risks associated with thrombolytics.
During my first year in the BBSP program, I also rotated with Dr. Frank Church and Dr. Monte Willis, both in Molecular and Cellular Pathology. In the Church Lab, my project focused on the role of cyclin-dependent kinases 4 & 6 in cellular senescence associated with vascular dysfunction and aging. During my rotation project in the Willis Lab, I studied the interaction of Muscle Ring Finger-1 (MuRF-1) with thyroid hormone receptors.