U of A student's undergrad research published in 'Biochemistry'

U of A student's undergrad research published in 'Biochemistry'
U of A student's undergrad research published in 'Biochemistry'
Undergraduate research performed at University of Arkansas (U of A) has garnered national recognition and publication in the journal Biochemistry recently.

Jordana Thibado's work began in Professor Roger Koeppe's lab during her freshman year.

Thibado's paper, "Influence of High pH and Cholesterol on Single Arginine-Containing Transmembrane Peptide Helices," was based on the experiments conducted on peptide helices.

The helices mimic components of cell membranes. When she inserted arginine, an amino acid, into the helix and exposed it to cholesterol, the results varied according to the position of the arginine.

When placed in the center of the helix, it was driven out of the lipid membrane's surface. When inserted into other parts of the helix and exposed to cholesterol, nothing happened.

"The future challenge is to figure out why cholesterol has such a big effect on one of these samples, and not on the other, because we don't understand why this is happening," Koeppe said. "Cholesterol is much studied, but many of the fundamental properties still are not well understood."

Thibado's undergraduate research won first place three times at national and regional conferences. She received a bachelor's in chemistry at U of A. She is currently pursuing her doctorate in physiology, biophysics and systems biology at Weill Medical College, located in New York. Weill is Cornell University's medical campus.

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