The following are presentation posters produced by the students in Drexel's Master of Science in Histotechnology (MHP) program.
Skin Cancer: A Closer Look at Mohs Micrographic Surgery
Student: O. Nefertiti Umeh
As physicians are exposed to the rapidly growing varieties of skin cancers so does their knowledge and expertise in new treatments must too grow. A Physician trained in Mohs micrographic surgery is valuable because this new and upcoming technique is the most advanced treatment in the field of skin cancer today with a success rate of 99%. Physicians well versed in this technique provide with the ability to train and educate more physicians about Mohs surgery. After mastery, physicians can remove a tumor without any sufficient harm to the surrounding healthy tissue.
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Tumor Tissue Biobanking and its Role in Translational Medicine: Analysis of Colorectal Cancer Tumors
Student: Erin L. Nacarelli, MS
Translational medicine integrates biomedical research with clinical and diagnostic strategies to improve health. A resourceful tool of translational medicine in the field of oncology is tumor tissue biobanking. Tumor tissue biobanking is used for biomedical research for the discovery of diagnostic and prognostic biomarkers that could provide insight into disease treatment and prevention. The presented case demonstrates that tumor tissue biobanking serves as a valuable resource for identifying diagnostic and prognostic biomarkers of colorectal cancer from a series of colorectal adenocarcinoma tissue specimens. In these tissue specimens, mutated oncogenic BRAF and microsatellite instability were associated with a poor clinical features and patient prognosis.
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Safer Alternatives to Hazardous Processing Solvents in Histotechnology Laboratories
Student: Caitlin Donnelly, MS
Histotechnology involves the process of fixing and embedding tissue specimens for the purpose of pathological examination. This process involves a number of steps and different chemicals. Multiple advancements have happened since the start of processing tissue, but the methods currently being used have posed issues for personnel who work in the laboratories as well as environmental hazards. Ongoing research has been put in effect to find new innovative ways of getting the same results of tissues with keeping a low carbon footprint and protecting employees' personal health. The major classes of solvents that pose a threat are the clearing agent, xylene, and the fixative, formaldehyde. They both cause health issues in the people who are exposed, as well as environmental effects.
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Nanotechnology in the Clinical Laboratory
Student: Jeannette P. Caruso, MS
Nanotechnology is a multidisciplinary scientific field of study that encompasses a vast array of technologies derived from engineering, physics, biology and chemistry. The advances in nanotechnology over the years in the electronics industry, for instance, have allowed for progressively smaller devices with greater complexity and memory. We are now beginning to see a promising future of nanotechnology in medicine and the clinical laboratory using devices and reagents on the nanometer scale that will hopefully mirror its success in other industries.
Currently, there has been success using nanotechnology in the clinical laboratory. Most significantly, is the use of quantum dots (QDs) in flow cytometry. Quantum dots (QDs) have also shown great success in immunohistochemistry applications, as well. The future of nanotechnology in medicine and the clinical laboratory offers many possibilities and may completely change the current methods of laboratory diagnostics.
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MALDI-MS Imaging-A Direct Tissue Analysis
Student: Katarzyna Wieczerzak, MS
Matrix Assisted Laser Desorption Ionization (MALDI) imaging is a bioanalytical technique that takes mass spectral snapshots of intact tissues and reveals how proteins and peptides and spatially distributed within a given sample (Alexandrov). It is an ionization technique that allows analysis of intact bio-molecules such as proteins, peptides, lipids, and sugars. This innovative technique is a powerful and versatile tool for discovering the spatial distribution of molecular compounds in a single measurement by collecting mass spectral data. MALDI imaging obtains molecular images of tissues that allow for the creation of a density map for each mass-to-charge (m/z) ratio of ionized peptides/proteins (Alexandrov). This technique has the ability to analyze intact molecules as well as their fragmentation pattern. The direct MALDI analysis allows for the acquisition of expression profiles of proteins and peptides while maintaining the cellular and molecular integrity. With the ability to reconstruct complex spectral data with imaging software, it is possible to create imaging maps of specific bio-molecules within the tissue sections. This technology uses the standard histological tissue sectioning technique coupled to a mass spectrometer to create a new frontier of histopathology proteomics and imaging.