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Home 9 2021 Student Research Symposium 9 Roxanna E. Alberto

Roxanna E. Alberto

Biology Pre-Med Major
Physical and Biological Sciences Category


My name is Roxanna E. Alberto and I am a senior at Missouri Southern State University. I am majoring in Biology (Pre-Med) with aspirations of medical school attendance in Fall 2022. I have a profound love for helping others in need in different fields. I have the hope of completing mine and my dad’s dream before his passing from Covid-19 this past November of becoming a Cardiologist. Through research in different fields such as cancer I have found more of a love for physiology related topics in internal medicine that have solidified my belief and dream of going into the medical field and keep on participating in research to further provide a better opportunity for not only patients in my dream field, but in other fields as well through linkages in future research studies I find myself participating in. 


Pancreatic cancer is one of the deadliest types of cancers with a relatively high mortality rate. With many cancers and diseases, there are common risk factors that include tobacco smoking, age, and genetics among others. Abrupt regulation and expression of key signaling pathways that control cell growth, division and survival are common in Pancreatic cancer. PI3 kinase pathway is one of the important molecular targets for various candidate chemotherapeutics. In this study, we have analyzed the effects of PI3 Kinase pathway inhibitor Bez235 on the growth, survival and death of Pancreatic cells. Cell survival/death was analyzed with XTT assay after 72 hours of drug addition. It was found that there is a significant reduction in cell survival at 5 micromolar concentration of Bez235. We have further isolated RNA from treated and control cells using Trizol method. cDNA was synthesized from the RNA using reverse transcriptase enzyme. We have further diluted the cDNA and used it for real-time PCR with SYBR green. We have analyzed the various genes involved in apoptosis and metastasis. Bez235 increases the apoptosis as indicated by a decrease in Bcl2 expression. There is no significant change in the expression of metastasis-related gene N-Cadherin in Bez235 treated cells. 

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