Journal of Undergraduate Research


humanized hPRT housekeeping gene, malignant tumors, endogenous control


Life Sciences


Microbiology and Molecular Biology


Our lab focuses on developing immunological techniques for diagnosing and treating cancer in a less invasive manner than current methods employ. New unique biomarkers are constantly needed to identify cancer in early stages in order to decrease mortality rates. When researching and publishing such biomarkers, many scientists use housekeeping genes such as glyceraldehyde 3-phosphate dehydrogenase (GAPDH) and hypoxanthine-guanine phosphoribosyltransferase (HPRT) as positive controls. It is expected that housekeeping genes are expressed in all cells and have relatively consistent expression in all tissues both normal and malignant. As a member of the purine salvage pathway, HPRT recycles 90% of the free guanine and inosine nucleotides in the body. Because of it’s major role in the cell cycle we predicted that it may have differential expression in a state of rapid proliferation, such as cancer.