BY JEHOVANI LOPEZ
2012 CSUSM Student Research Competition Finalist
I have gained extensive experience at CSUSM conducting research. Building upon with the concepts I learn in class, research guides me toward my goals. Science is a means of discovery, but it also instills in me a responsibility to find a beneficial use for what I do as I pursue a future career in research.
About my Research
Tuberculosis (TB) affects one third of the world’s populations and is rapidly becoming more drug resistant to common antibiotics. My research looks for new chemicals that could help improve the treatment of TB. My role in the lab is to extract, purify and identify new anti-TB compounds from marine bacteria that inhibit fish tuberculosis, with the goal of it also inhibiting human TB.
Bacterial strain Ua323 was a promising strain that had shown fish TB inhibition in small scale screenings. I performed a large-scale extraction of Ua323 where the bacteria was cultivated in synthetic sea water and induced to produce its defensive chemicals in the presence of invading fish tuberculosis bacteria. These chemicals were then purified and tested for their inhibition against fish tuberculosis, and the compounds with the most inhibition were further analyzed to determine their molecular structure. My research is one of the many branches of drug discovery that could yield new antibiotics or previously unstudied molecular structures for the development of antibiotics against TB.
Jehovani Lopez is among the twelve finalists representing CSUSM at the 26th annual statewide Student Research Competition held at CSU Long Beach on May 4-5. Hear firsthand how his research is leading to new discoveries, positively impacting his education and propeling him toward his future aspirations.