Mentors: Max Majireck, Shrikanta Chattopadhyay, Stephen Scully
Multiple myeloma is the most common type of cancer of the plasma cells in the blood. Myeloma cells collect in the bone marrow, and damage the solid part of the bone. Some myeloma cells are stroma-dependent, i.e. they are dependent on stroma cells in the connective tissues of bone marrow, in order to grow. These stroma-depedent myeloma cells have a greater resistance to anti-cancer drugs, as compared to stroma-independent myeloma cells.
Maria synthesized 4 chemical compounds this summer, that were analogs of a hit compound from an initial chemical screen to identify inhibitors of growth of stroma-dependent multiple myeloma cells. Then Maria tested the 4 analogs she synthesized – along with 5 previously synthesized analogs – for the potency and selectivity of their inhibition of stroma-dependent myeloma cells. Five of the nine compounds Maria tested were at least 20% potent, and one was over 70% potent – and thus a promising potential inhibitor of the growth of these cancer cells.
Maria, a senior at Brockton High School, synthesized and tested chemical compounds that are potential inhibitors of the growth of multiple myeloma cancer cells.