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  • Colloquium Spotlight: Janine DeBlasi

    Thursday, April 6th, 2017 | Tags: , , , , ,
    Posted in OUR Blog by emiliakalogiannis | No Comments »

    Janine DeBlasi OUR
    Junior cellular and molecular biology major, Janine DeBlasi, presented her research during poster session 2 of the research colloquium.

    DeBlasi’s research studied vitamin C as a
    pro-oxidant therapy.

    “When it comes to cancer, increasing oxidative stress can be therapeutic,” said DeBlasi.

    When given to patients intravenously, vitamin C reaches high concentrations that can have a
    pro-oxidative effect.


    DeBlasi found that after 24 hours of treatment with 0.5 millimolar vitamin C and above, about 80% of the mouse-derived metastatic cancer cells were killed, which suggests an anti-cancer effect. She found the same effect on cell growth with concentrations as low as 0.05 millimollar vitamin C which inhibited the growth of the cell and is important information when assessing the efficacy of an anti-cancer therapy.

    Effects of anti-oxidants on cancer cell death with vitamin C were also looked at. DeBlasi found that it prevents cell death from occurring which confirms that it’s working through oxidative stress and is valuable information for clinical application.

    Finally, DeBlasi looked at the effect of both hyperbaric oxygen therapy and vitamin C together.

    Hyperbaric oxygen is an approved medical therapy for wound healing. DeBlasi found that at a lower, but pharmacologically relevant concentration of vitamin C, which can be achieved through IV, combined with a single session of hyperbaric oxygen therapy, the there is a synergistic effect.

    DeBlasi says her next step is to test this in the animal model to see the therapies’ effects on survival and tumor progression.

    “Hopefully this would translate into a clinical study if it does show more efficacy,” said Deblasi.

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