Two Clarkson chemistry students receive travel awards and will present at 31st annual symposium this summer in Montreal
Wednesday, June 14, 2017 - 8:52 am

POTSDAM -- Clarkson University chemistry doctoral students Emmalyn Dupree of Massena, and Devika Channaveerappa of Bangalore, India, have received travel awards from The Protein Society to attend and present at the 31st annual symposium this summer in Montreal, Quebec.

Devika Channaveerappa and Emmalyn DupreeChannaveerappa is researching the molecular changes occurring in rat atria during obstructive sleep apnea (OSA). OSA is associated with atrial diseases, including atrial enlargement, fibrosis and arrhythmias. The specific molecular mechanisms of OSA-induced cardiac changes are not known. By collaborating with Masonic Medical Research Laboratory in Utica, N.Y., a novel OSA model was developed, which closely recapitulates the occurrence of OSA in humans.

Atria of the control rats and rats induced with OSA are excised and proteomics is conducted on the atrial tissues to identify differentially expressed proteins.

Relative comparison of proteins and their associated pathways between controls and OSA induced rat atria will help in understanding the complex pattern of changes occurring with OSA which further leads to cardiac disease, Channaveerappa said.

Dupree's current work utilizes human sera samples and proteomic methods to research the effects of polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) on the proteome of consumers of Great Lakes fish. PCBs are a class of ubiquitous persistent, bioaccumulative and toxic chemicals (PBTs) that have been targeted by the Great Lakes Water Quality Initiative and environmental monitoring programs for decades.

Although the manufacturing of PCBs has been banned by congress, release and exposure -- specifically through consumption of fish containing PCBs or sites with historically high levels of contamination -- is still possible.

PCBs have been shown to cause a variety of adverse health effects, including cancers. Dupree hopes that this research will shed light on the way proteins in the human body are affected by PCBs that accumulate in the ecosystem.

Channaveerappa and Dupree work in Associate Professor of Chemistry & Biomolecular Science Costel C. Darie's Biochemistry and Proteomics Lab. The projects mentioned above are supported through a Clarkson University and Masonic Medical Research Lab collaboration and through an environmental grant led by Research Assistant Professor of Civil & Environmental Engineering Bernard Crimmins and Jean S. Newell Distinguished Professor of Engineering / Co-Director of CARES Thomas M. Holsen.

The Protein Society annual symposium is a gathering of leaders of the international protein science community. The meeting features a multitude of opportunities for networking, speaking slots for selected early-career scientists, and unique workshops for students and educators alike.