Pooja: Research answers the questions that
doctors ask every day. Linda: Pooja’s working on optical treatment
for pancreatic cancer and this new drug that she is working well really doesn’t have
a lot of studies done on it yet, so she’s doing some groundbreaking work on that.
Pooja: PDT is photodynamic therapy and what we do is we use light and drug combinations
to kill hopefully the cancer cells and my project involves finding the threshold drug
dose, which is the magic number that the researchers everywhere are looking for and they’re trying
to get. That’s what I come in with collaborating with Mayo Clinic.
Linda: When you decide how much light to put on a tumor that’s going to be very important
to optimize treatment and make sure you treat the whole thickness of the tumor and don’t
give too much that you destroy the normal tissue underneath. Her work could turn out
to be very useful for people. Pooja: Pancreatic cancer cell has awful survival
rates. Just to know that I’m doing something for this research gives me a great gratification.
Ever since I started working here, it’s been with Mayo Clinic. Thanks to College of
Charleston and the physics department, we’re able to have this connection. That’s why
I’m so happy that were collaborating with them so we can actually see the clinical side
of this research. Linda: I think the research is the best way
to tell whether you want to do patient care or medical research and I think the hands-on
is the most important thing. There’s something about the hands-on that really gives them
the confidence. Pooja: This experience has made me realize
if I wanted to do it, it’s a possibility for me. I plan on attending medical school
so for me I love getting answers and the only way to get those answers this through research.
I can’t imagine anything more rewarding than what I’m doing right now.