Grand Award

3rd Place

Factors that affect Cancer Metastasis

Biochemical Science and Bioengineering
Shivam Kedia

Mr. Kevin Mathews

"Cancer is the second leading cause of death in the United States. In addition, conflicting data regarding how cancer spreads shows that this process is not fully understood. Understanding how cancers grow and spread, or metastasize, is an active area of research, especially for finding effective treatment options. Finding factors that affect the rate of initiation of cancer metastasis will help in understanding how the process works. Potential treatment options for inhibiting tumor growth and cell proliferation are urea, vitamin C, and salts, such as magnesium sulfate. Urea, as a waste product, is a product of many cellular reactions. Introducing high levels of urea may slow down cell proliferation, thus potentially slowing down metastasis. Vitamin C, as an antioxidant, is important for many biological processes. High levels of Vitamin C could therefore potentially slow down DNA replication, decreasing the rate of cell proliferation. Magnesium sulfate and other salts are used in many biological processes in cells. Adding certain concentrations of these salts could change the observed rate of proliferation. Laboratory models for cancer growth have included both cell proliferation and soft agar assays. Cell proliferation assays are liquid assays which allow measurement of cell proliferation in two dimensions. A known amount of HEK293T cells is seeded in multiple wells, with media and treatments added. After roughly 48 hours, cell growth in response to different treatments is quantified and compared. The soft agar assay measures cell proliferation in three dimensions. Cell growth in response to different treatments is quantified by the week, and compared. "

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