• Project Title: An Unfriendly Species’ Contributions to a Global Initiative

  • BASIS Advisor: Carrie May

  • Internship Location: Protein One

  • Onsite Mentor: Dr. Xiaoping Yang

Despite its high efficacy, pharmaceuticals are not only time-consuming to produce but also expensive. As a consequence to this standard of production, many regions of the world are limited in their access to pharmaceuticals either by monetary or production burdens. This becomes a predicament particularly to the widespread cancer epidemic where certain regions of the world are limited to the supply of chemotherapeutic drugs. Consequently, discovering a means of production that will enable the cheap production and easy distribution of pharmaceuticals can have large-scale advantages. Protein One LLC produces a number of pharmaceuticals using recombinant DNA technology where a sequence of human DNA encoding for a specific protein is inserted into bacteria. These bacteria then produce hundreds of the resulting protein within a 24 hour time-span which allow the proteins to be harvested for medicinal use. By using this technology with proteins and antibodies that are used in cancer treatment, I can examine whether chemotherapeutic drugs can be produced using such methods and whether they remain as effective as those produced using other means. The world of medicine seeks to generate the best and most effective pharmaceuticals; however, creating effective drugs that only few people have access to will do very little in alleviating global epidemics, especially one like cancer.