Approval has been granted! After nearly a year of paperwork being filled out and troubleshooting, Westtown has officially been granted access to Biosafety Level 1 products (as long as they are not derived from humans or primates). This is a great step forward because I essentially have all of the approval needed in order to begin my actual research.
I plan on beginning research after Thanksgiving, due to a small time frame before then. This will also allow for me to figure out remaining conflicts or roadblocks that may come in the future. One of the major issues that I will face during my research is what to do with the cell lines while I am on breaks, because no one will be able to culture them while I am gone. This will require me to figure out either away or location to store them while gone or raise more money so that I can repurchase the cell lines to culture them again (the second option will be very expensive). Although I have already begun reaching out to local research facilities regarding this issue; I plan on reaching out to even more research facilities in hopes of gaining further advice and insight on this future problem
Along with my approval for BSL 1 products, I also analyzed research papers on the effects pomegranate juice has on cancer. Pomegranate juice (Pj) is very fascinating due to its high content of polyphenols – which include ellagic gallotannins, ellagitannins, gallotannins, and other flavonoids. The compound, however, that is most attributed to Pj being such a potent antioxidant is the large percentage of punicalagin in these polyphenols. Pj also has been linked to having anticancer characteristics.
While I was waiting for approval, I began research on pomegranate juice and extract and the effects they have on prostate, colon, and oral cancer. Throughout the research paper, I specifically focused on their research in prostate cancer due to it being a form of genitourinary cancer (they specifically analyzed the RWPE-1 and 22Rv1 cell lines). This research is very similar to mine due to them testing pomegranate juice (in this study they used POM wonderful) and the effects it has on a genitourinary cancer cell line. The results of their study showed that when Pj was used compared to its separated polyphenols was more potent. This finding is an example of a synergistic effect. This also eludes to the idea that when one has a diet consisting of foods with high concentrations of antioxidant phytochemicals it may lead to a proliferation in cancer cells. I am excited to continue further research on natural products, and their effects on cancer and finally begin my research.