Hodges, Jackie

Jackie Hodges

Specialization in Biochemistry Research with Prof. Linda Columbus

Jackie is from Gainesville, VA and graduated from Battlefield High School. She has performed research in the Columbus Lab within the Chemistry Department since the summer after her first year. Jackie is studying the direct binding of OpaHS (Opa50) to heparansulfate proteoglycan receptors (HSPGs) using fluorescence techniques and heparin, a structural analog of HSPGs. She aims to confirm a selective interaction between this membrane protein and the host receptor and quantify the binding affinity. Further understanding of the intrinsic protein and receptor properties that determine this selectivity will enhance studies of the protein-triggered engulfment of the pathogens. Jackie hopes to pursue a dual degree in medicine and public health after completing her undergraduate degree.