2022 Undergraduate Summer Research Program Participant

Home Department: Engineering
Mentor: Laura Attardi (Radiation Oncology - Radiation & Cancer Biology)

“Using Single Cell Methods to Understand How p53 Loss Promotes Pancreatic Ductal Adenocarcinoma Progression”

Pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC) is the 3rd deadliest cancer in the US - projected to be the 2nd by 2026. While functionally impactful mutations of the protein p53 tumor suppressor is observed in ~75% of PDACs, how p53 inactivation promotes progression from epithelial cells to PDAC is not well understood. In this project, Allegra will conduct single-cell sequencing assays for transposase-accessible chromatin (scATAC-seq) in genetically engineered mouse models of early and late PDAC progression with and without p53. She will combine this scATAC-seq data with scRNA-seq data from the Attardi lab to correlate differential genome-wide regulatory landscapes and gene expression to understand how loss of p53 promotes PDAC.