Program Alumni

Since 2016 the SDSU-UCSD Cancer Center Partnership has served 62 undergraduate students and has resulted in 57 published papers.

Setareh Akhavan

Major: Public Health
Exp. Grad. Date: Spring 2020
Mentor: Hatim Husain, M.D. Dept of Medicine, UCSD
Project Title: Noninvasive Kinetic Monitoring of Response to Targeted Therapy using Circulating Tumor DNA in Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer Patients

Sati Alexander

Major: Biology
Exp. Grad. Date: Spring 2020
Mentor: Silvio Gutkind, Ph.D., Dept. of Pharmacology, UCSD
Project Title: Inhibition of mTOR and PD1 in Oral Squamous Cell Carcinoma

Bayan Almasri

Major: Microbiology- Chemical Laboratory Science
Exp. Grad. Date: Spring 2019
Mentor: Nicholas Webster, Ph.D., Dept. of Medicine, UCSD
Project Title: The Effect of Hyperinsulinemia on Tumor Cell Growth

Yesenia Avitia

Major: Microbiology- Chemical Laboratory Science
Exp. Grad. Date: Spring 2019
Mentor: Maria E. Martinez, Ph.D., Dept. of Health Sciences, UCSD
Project Title: Human Papillomavirus (HPV) vaccination in Pediatric Oncology Survivors

Katelyn Bachand

Major: Chemistry/Biochemistry
Exp. Grad. Date: Fall 2018
Mentor: James Murphy M.D., M.S., Dept. of Medicine, UCSD
Project Title: Impact of Hospital Safety Net Burden on Oncology Patterns of Guideline Concordant Care

Samantha Crawford

Major: Chemistry/Biochemistry
Exp. Grad. Date: Spring 2019
Mentor: Adam Burgoyne, M.D., Ph.D., Dept. of Medicine, UCSD
Project Title: Characterization of Resistance Mechanisms to the Dual PIK3 and BRD4 Inhibitor SF2523

Kelly Dinh

Major: Music-Piano Performance
Exp. Grad. Date: Spring 2019
Mentor: Rafael Bejar, M.D., Ph.D., Dept. of Medicine, UCSD
Project Title: Characterizing Mutations in Myelodysplastic Syndrome (MDS)

Julia Escobedo

Major: Biology
Exp. Grad. Date: Fall 2020
Mentor: Andrew Lowy, M.D., Dept. of Medicine, UCSD
Project Title: Investigating Super Enhancer X's Potential Role in Pancreatic Cancer Oncogenesis

Kasim Hakimi

Major: Biology and Kinesiology
Exp. Grad. Date: Spring 2020
Mentor: Sandip Patel, M.D., Dept. of Medicine, UCSD
Project Title: ABO type as a predictor of efficacy in Immunotherapy

Nicholas Lucido

Major: Public Health
Exp. Grad. Date: Spring 2020
Mentor: Kristen Wells, Ph.D., M.P.H., Dept. of Psychology, SDSU
Project Title: Stigma as a Barrier to PrEP Initiation and Adherence among Young Latino Men who Have Sex with Men: A Qualitative Study

Andrew Macias

Major: Biology
Exp. Grad. Date: Spring 2019
Mentor: Peter Zage, M.D., Ph.D., Dept. of Medicine, UCSD
Project Title: Onco-GPS map depicting the cellular states of Neuroblastoma cell line response to 13-cis-retinoic acid

Valeria Ochoa

Major: Public Health
Exp. Grad. Date: Summer 2019
Mentor: William Kim, Ph.D., Dept. of Medicine, UCSD
Project Title: Breast Cancer Cellular States

Kevin Zarghan

Major: Biology
Exp. Grad. Date: Fall 2020
Mentor: Manal A. Swairjo, Ph.D., Dept. of Chemistry, SDSU
Project Title: Overexpression, Purification and Crystallization of the Queuine Salvage Protein DUF2419

Meseret Fesseha

Major: Nursing
Exp. Grad. Date: Fall 2018
Mentor: Mee Young Hong, Ph.D., Dept. of Exercise and Nutrition Science, SDSU
Project Title: Effects of Watermelon Consumption on Cellular Proliferation, and Apoptosis in Rat Colon

Muna Shariff

Major: Nursing
Exp. Grad. Date: Fall 2018
Mentor: Elva Arredondo, Ph.D., Dept. of Public Health, SDSU
Project Title: Are there gender differences in health behaviors among participants enrolled in a cancer prevention intervention?

2018 Alumni Group Photo

SDSU Scholars

Asha A. Abdullahi

Major: Political Science and Public Health
Exp. Grad. Date: Spring 2018
Mentor: Kristen Wells, Ph.D., M.P.H., Dept. of Psychology, SDSU
Project Title: Intrapersonal Barriers and Facilitators to Cervical Cancer Screening of Women with HIV in Surat, India

Warsan M. Artan

Major: Political Science
Exp. Grad. Date: Spring 2019
Mentor: Mark Sussman, Ph.D., Dept. of Biology, SDSU
Project Title: Evaluation of Macrophage mRNA Expression after Conditioned Cancer Media Treatments

Max R. Fang

Major: Public Health
Exp. Grad. Date: Spring 2018
Mentor: Dorothy Sears, Ph.D., Dept. of Medicine and Family Medicine, UCSD
Project Title: Assessing Fasting Plasma Glucose Change in Breast Cancer Survivors Participating in a Randomized Control Trial of Physical Activity

Jessica K. Furrh

Major: Cell and Molecular Biology
Exp. Grad. Date: Spring 2018
Mentor: Andrew M. Lowy, M.D., Dept. of Surgery, UCSD
Project Title: The Effects of Triptolide on the phenotype of pancreatic cancer cells

Mark R. Jager

Major: Biology
Exp. Grad. Date: Spring 2019
Mentor: Samir Gupta, M.D., Dept. of Surgery, UCSD
Project Title: Impact of mailed outreach on colorectal cancer screening: a systematic review and meta-analysis

Morgan C. Knudsen

Major: Nursing
Exp. Grad. Date: Spring 2018
Mentor: Nicholas Webster, Ph.D., Dept. of Medicine, UCSD
Project Title: Role of insulin-like growth factor 2 (IGF2) in hepatocellular carcinoma development in Serine/arginine-rich splicing factor 3 (SRSF3) KO mice

Emma L. Longmire

Major: Biology
Exp. Grad. Date: Spring 2019
Mentor: Catriona Jamieson, M.D., Ph.D., Dept. of Medicine, UCSD
Project Title: Antisense oligonucleotide inhibition of CTGF in Chronic Myeloid Leukemia

Nina Ly

Major: Chemistry/Biochemistry
Exp. Grad. Date: Spring 2019
Mentor: Maria E. Martinez, Ph.D., Dept. of Health Sciences, UCSD; Pablo Tamayo, Ph.D., Dept. of Medicine, UCSD
Project Title: A Functional Map of Oncogenic States for Breast Cancer

Valeria Mejia

Major: Biology
Exp. Grad. Date: Spring 2019
Mentor: Sandip Patel, M.D., Dept. of Medicine, UCSD
Project Title: Cancer Immunotherapy Response Rates Across Ethnic Groups

Michael L. Morrison

Major: Public Health
Exp. Grad. Date: Spring 2018
Mentor: Caroline Thompson, Ph.D., Dept. of Public Health, SDSU
Project Title: A Comparison Study of Teenage Smoking Rates in California and San Diego County

Jesus S. Ortiz

Major: Biology
Exp. Grad. Date: Fall 2018
Mentor: Mark Ginsberg., M.D., Dept. of Medicine, UCSD
Project Title: MARCH-mediated Post-translational regulation of Hepatocyte Growth Factor Receptor at the cell surface

Adam S. Perez

Major: Chemistry
Exp. Grad. Date: Spring 2018
Mentor: Jesus Rivera Nieves, M.D., Dept. of Medicine, UCSD
Project Title: Qualitative Comparison of SAMP and TNF α Mouse Models Using Mass Cytometry

Navin Rajapakse

Major: Biology
Exp. Grad. Date: Spring 2018
Mentor: Pradipta Ghosh, M.D., Dept. of Medicine, UCSD
Project Title: Identification of a Polarized Exocytic Machinery Important for Cancer Invasion

Anna Maria B. Vasillieva

Major: Biology
Exp. Grad. Date: Spring 2019
Mentor: Irene Su M.D., Dept. of Reproductive Medicine, UCSD
Project Title: Is Hispanic ethnicity associated with acceptance of not having more children in adolescent and young adult cancer survivors?

Cristal D. Vieyra

Major: Nursing
Exp. Grad. Date: Spring 2019
Mentor: James Murphy M.D., M.S., Dept. of Medicine, UCSD
Project Title: Impact of language barrier on the reporting and management of acute toxicities of radiotherapy in cervical cancer

UCSD Scholars

Davana F. Rosas

Major: Public Health
Exp. Grad. Date: Spring 2019
Mentor: Vanessa Malcarne, Ph.D., Psychology, SDSU
Project Title: Cancer Fatalism in Latino/as: Relationship to Sociodemographics

Cynthia Sanchez

Major: Public Health
Exp. Grad. Date: Spring 2019
Mentor: Elva Arredondo, Ph.D., Dept. of Public Health, SDSU
Project Title: A Plan to Determine How to Sustain Physical Activity Programs in Faith Based Organizations

2017 Alumni Group Photo

Sabrina Aden

Major: Biology
Exp. Grad. Date: Spring 2018
Mentor: Dorothy Sears, Ph.D., Dept. of Medicine and Family Medicine, UCSD
Project Title: Acute Effects of Sitting Interruption Modalities on Plasma Glucose in Postmenopausal Women

Jasmine Carey

Major: Interdisciplinary Studies- Biology, Chemistry, and Spanish
Exp. Grad. Date: Spring 2018
Mentor: Gregory Talavera, M.D., M.P.H., Dept. of Public Health, SDSU
Project Title: Patient, Provider & System Level Factors to Consider when Implementing Evidence Based Colorectal Cancer Prevention & Early Detection in a Federally Qualified Health Center

Keagan Casey

Major: Public Health
Exp. Grad. Date: Spring 2017
Mentor: Rohit Loomba, M.D., Dept. of Medicine, UCSD
Project Title: Aramchol as Treatment for HIV-associated nonalcoholic fatty liver disease and lipodystrophy

Tatianna Clark

Major: Public Health and Kinesiology
Exp. Grad. Date: Spring 2018
Mentor: Kristen Wells, Ph.D., MPH, Dept. of Psychology, SDSU
Project Title: Development of a Patient Navigation Intervention to Improve Colorectal Cancer Care

Esteban Delgado III

Major: Chemistry/Biochemistry
Exp. Grad. Date: Spring 2020
Mentor: Silvio Gutkind, Ph.D., Dept. of Pharmacology, UCSD
Project Title: Preventing Proliferative ERK Activation following AKT-mTOR Inhibition in Head and Neck Squamous Cell Carcinomas (HNSCCs)

Janeth J. Juarez

Major: Sociology
Exp. Grad. Date: Spring 2018
Mentor: John Elder, Ph.D., M.P.H., M.A., Dept. of Public Health, SDSU
Project Title: The Association Between Secondhand Smoke and Childhood Asthma in the Respira Sano Study

Precious Moman

Major: Biology
Exp. Grad. Date: Spring 2018
Mentor: Christal Sohl, Ph.D., Dept. of Chemistry, SDSU
Project Title: Kinetic Characterization of Isocitrate Dehydrogenase 1 (IDH1) Mutations Identified in Tumors

Susana Najera

Major: Biology and Spanish
Exp. Grad. Date: Spring 2017
Mentor: Mark Ginsberg, M.D., Dept. of Medicine, UCSD; Kelly Doran, Ph.D., Dept. of
Biology, SDSU
Project Title: Targeting of CD98 by the E3 Ubiquitin Ligase MARCH1

Jonathan Plascencia

Major: Biology
Exp. Grad. Date: Spring 2018
Mentor: Jesus Rivera Nieves, M.D., Ph.D., Dept. of Medicine, UCSD
Project Title: Anti-Human TNF treatment of a mouse model that overproduces TNF and develops ileitis and arthritis

Chloe Roach

Major: Nursing
Exp. Grad. Date: Spring 2017
Mentor: Samir Gupta, M.D., Dept. of Medicine, UCSD

Martin Somo

Major: Biology
Exp. Grad. Date: Spring 2017
Mentor: Sheila Crowe, M.D., Dept. of Medicine, UCSD
Project Title: H. Pylori Infection Results on an Effect of miR-21 Expression in Primary and Cancer Cell Lines

Charles N. Vallez

Major: Biology
Exp. Grad. Date: Spring 2018
Mentor: Mark Sussman, Ph.D., Dept. of Biology, SDSU
Project Title: Developing a Reliable Read-Out of TLRT7 Activation

2016 Alumni Group Photo



Student Research

The PSP provides unique opportunities for students to participate in research in their area of interest with faculty from SDSU and UCSD