Campbell University School of Osteopathic Medicine students were in the spotlight last week at the 2018 Scientific Session of the North Carolina Chapter of the American College of Physicians (NC-ACP) in Greensboro — an event that brings residents, researchers and physician educators together to share internal medicine advances and connect with colleagues.
For students and residents, it’s an opportunity to present research in a scientific competition and sharpen mental skills.
The winning team included second-year medical students Kyle Admire, Julia Brogdon and Brian Gorman who presented their work “Anti-tNASP Antibodies Are a Potential Diagnostic Marker for Malignant Tumors” and won first for Best Clinical Research. The students presented research findings generated during the course of the last two years in the research laboratory of Dr. Oleg Alekseev, professor of physiology and pathophysiology, which was established within the School of Medicine in 2013.
“This research project is in the active phase. We have demonstrated that six out of ten most common human cancers can be detected by the elevated anti-tNASP antibodies in the patient’s blood. This discovery can grow into the development of a new revolutionary cancer marker,” said Alekseev.
The decision to become involved in Alekseev’s work was an easy one for the students, as they had all participated in research throughout their undergraduate studies.
“Over the summer, in addition to testing through ten more malignant cancer types, we participated in sessions on topics ranging from research ethics to statistics within biomedical research,” said Admire. The team made sure to come into the laboratory at any opportunity they could, focusing on malignant brain and prostate cancer types, both of which yielded great results.
“I’m excited to see how our work progresses in the future, we also believe that our research could not only be used for detection, but also for the staging and prognosis of many of these cancers,” said Gorman. The group plans to continue their efforts of searching for a cancer marker that could one day be used for possible early detection.
“The next steps will involve testing samples from the most common 25 malignant cancers as well as benign tumor types,” said Brogdon.
“We are so thankful to Campbell Medicine for the impactful experience and the opportunities the program has given us,” said Admire. In addition to the first prize, he also received a travel grant to present the research results in April at the National ACP Internal Medicine Meeting in New Orleans.
“The Department of Physiology and Pathophysiology and the School have been very supportive in providing us with a modern research facility and an environment to carry out this program of investigations,” said Alekseev.
The School of Medicine is scheduled to open a new research facility in Tracey F. Smith Hall of Nursing & Health Sciences late this summer. Learn more about Research at Campbell Medicine.