2022 Undergraduate Summer Research Program Participant

Home Department: Human Biology
Mentor: Michelle James (Radiology and Neurology & Neurological Sciences)

“A Novel Translational Strategy for Detecting Maladaptive Inflammation in Alzheimer’s Disease”

Dr. James’ research is dedicated to the development of neuroimmune molecular imaging strategies. Sydney’s project will investigate the sensitivity, specificity, and overall utility of a novel positron emission tomography (PET) imaging biological marker of the aberrant activation of immune cells located in the central nervous system in the context of Alzheimer's disease (AD). Specifically, she will use PET/CT imaging and complementary immune profiling techniques (e.g., histology, flow cytometry) to non-invasively assess neuroinflammation with disease progression in rodent models of AD. She will assist in conducting the imaging studies as well as the subsequent histological and immunological experiments, learning a host of skills including molecular imaging, PET image analysis, and immunohistochemistry. This work will allow them to explore the molecular landscape of AD as neuroinflammation occurs.