Searching For Answers

Jocie Larson ’24 is currently studying for the MCAT (medical college admission test) in January. She wants to become a pediatric oncologist and battle blood cancers like lymphoblastic leukemia someday. But, because Bennies ask great questions, Jocie asked, Why can’t someday be today? So she spent this past summer as one of 60 CSB and SJU students taking part in undergraduate research programs. Her project studied the p300 protein’s HAT (histone acetyltransferase) domain – specifically looking for certain drugs that might be able to bind to it and prevent its role in the expression of cancer.

“This is going to become my distinguished thesis, so I’ll continue the project into my senior year,” she says. “When I started, I thought it would be great to get one drug that would bind to p300 and we’ve found five. So I couldn’t be happier with the results.”
“A research experience allows students to take initiative by generating ideas that expand their existing knowledge and skills,” says Lindsey Gunnerson Gutsch, director of the Office of Undergraduate Research and Scholars. “It helps them become good problem solvers and get comfortable facing challenges.”

Watch Jocie's feature video below.