By Arjun Kanjarpane
A senior at River Hill High School, Arjun Kanjarpane is an IR-III student and is researching social and educational inequity in underserved areas. Specifically, Arjun is conducting outreach in underserved Baltimore City schools to find patterns about why some students have lower test scores, graduation rates and academic satisfaction when compared to other socioeconomic populations.For the past two years, in IR I and II, Arjun studied oncolytic viruses with a focus on immunosuppresion to increase viral efficacy. Current treatments are ineffective for many types of cancer, and are toxic to healthy cells. Arjun’s research identified Zika, Herpes, Measles, Adeno viruses that lyse tumor cells safely, and efficaciously. Arjun identified several efficacy, and safety domains within oncolytic virotherapy: viral physiology affecting tumor specificity, in-vivo viral pathogenicity, direct anti-tumor efficacy, and pre-post viral insertion immunomodulation. In support of his research, Arjun recently visited the UMBC library, and identified experts at the Mayo Clinic, and the University of Maryland. Arjun’s project will selected an emerging challenge within one of the OV domains for immunologic research advancement: antiviral responses within the viruses.
Dr. Sangeeta Underwood, Product Compliance Scientist at the United States Army Medical Materiel Activity Center, Clinical Research Management, Fort Detrick.
Dr. Underwood has extensive experience in the field of medical and biological sciences, including product development of medical countermeasures such as vaccines, therapeutics and biologics for emerging infectious diseases and bio/chem-warfare agents. Dr. Underwood also possess a high degree of expertise in FDA regulations and DoD policies and has experience in managing technical (scientific and regulatory) activities, writing and reviewing scientific papers, proposals, technical documents and acquisition-related documents. MS, doctorate and post-doctoral research in microbiology with dissertations in clinical/medical microbiology and infectious diseases. Lastly, Dr. Underwood has certifications in FDA Regulatory Affairs and Project Management.
Dr. Samuel Rabkin, Associate Professor of Surgery, Harvard Medical School, Associate Virologist, Massachusetts General Hospital.
Dr. Rabkin is Associate Professor of Surgery (Microbiology and Molecular Genetics) at Harvard Medical School and Associate Virologist in Neurosurgery at Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston. He received his B.Sc. degree from the University of Toronto, his M.Sc. degree from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and his Ph.D. degree from the University of Chicago. His postdoctoral work was done at Harvard Medical School.
Research in this laboratory focuses on the use of herpes simplex virus (HSV) vectors for cancer therapy and gene delivery in the nervous system, with the long-term goal being the therapeutic application of these vectors to patients.