VU Mentor: Charles Hong
“Determined, persistent and relentless in the pursuit of excellence has always been my mantra”
My name is Sashana Dixon, hailing from the beautiful island of Jamaica. I consider myself to be a humble, spontaneous, trustworthy, hardworking, and self-motivated individual. I attended the University of the West Indies Mona Campus in Jamaica, where I recently completed a Bachelor of Basic Medical Science Degree in Pharmacology.I chose to attend the VISRA program in order to gain a foundation in basic research and to experience scientific research outside of Jamaica.
I believe through VISRA, I will be able to learn new techniques and expand my knowledge base as it relates to my research interests.Here in the VISRA Program, I am working with Dr. Charles Hong, MD, PhD; Associate Professor of Cell and Development Biology, Medicine and Pharmacology. My research project during the VISRA program involves investigating the role of the G-protein coupled receptor 68 (GPR68) in regulating metastasis in melanoma. We want to elucidate the aspects of melanoma metastasis governed by GPR68 using a novel GPR68 inhibitor discovered in a zebrafish phenotypic small molecule screen.My secondary project during the VISRA program will involve investigating the mechanism of casein kinase inhibition in SW480 colon cancer line.
Based on my research this summer one would conclude that my area of interest is cancer research. Thus far, my laboratory experience could be described as second to none: fully equipped laboratory, helpful and resourceful graduate students. Certainly an experience!!
There is so much to learn while having fun, believe me; the knowledge, expertise, and advice you will get here is endless. For our future participants, I would say in Patois, “Enjoy yuh self” it’s a wonderful opportunity, make the most of it and have fun.