BJU Students Make Presentation to International Cancer Research Conference

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GREENVILLE, S.C. (November 17, 2014) — Dr. Steve Figard, research director for the Bob Jones University Cancer Research Lab, recently had the opportunity to accompany four students as they made a poster presentation at the annual American Institute for Cancer Research (AICR) Conference.

The two-day conference, held at the Capitol Hill Hilton in Washington, DC, featured nearly 100 presenters from colleges and universities around the world. Medical schools and laboratories from such schools as Ohio State University, Johns Hopkins University, Tufts University, University of South Carolina and the University of Paris were all on hand to make presentations to the hundreds of delegates assembled.

“It was an incredible opportunity for Bob Jones University to be featured as a presenter at an international cancer research conference,” said Danny Machado, a junior Biology major from Guatemala. “While what we presented was preliminary work, it was the beginning of putting BJU’s Cancer Research Laboratory on the map.”

Their research project, “Partial Characterization of the Extraction Method for and Treatment with a Potential Anti-Cancer Agent from Almonds,” originally began as a research project while Dr. Amy Tuck, BJU biology faculty member, was serving as the interim Director of Cancer Research. Students at BJU have been working on the project for three years and were able to accumulate sufficient data this past summer to make their poster presentation. The students designed and executed a set of experiments using almonds in their quest to find a natural substance to eliminate gastric cancer cells.

“From an academic perspective, it was a privilege to interact with health professionals and research directors from medical schools around the world,” said Anthony Nye, a senior Biology major from Indianapolis, Indiana. “This conference brought together international experts in cancer research and it was a privilege for BJU to participate.”

In addition to Nye and Machado, Emily Harris, a junior Premed major from Sparks, Nevada, and Hannah Ng, a junior Premed major from Singapore, were members of the BJU poster team.

The BJU Cancer Research Lab opened in 2010 as a result of a large grant from a private donor in memoriam to her husband who died from cancer. It is housed in the former Barge Memorial Hospital on the BJU campus.