James Irvine Foundation Chair in Biological Sciences
Department of Biology
Science & Learning Center 305
Whittier College, Department of Biology
13406 Philadelphia St., Whittier, CA 90608
B.A. Biology, Minor in Chemistry
Whittier College, 1999
Ph.D. Molecular, Cellular, and Integrative Physiology
University of California, Los Angeles, 2008
Immunology, oncology, disease pathology, oxidative stress, aging, neuromuscular disorders, effect of plant nutraceuticals on health and cancer, and biosensor development & validation for pathogenic detection.
Professor Sylvia Vetrone is an immunologist whose current research focuses on investigating the potential health and anti-cancer benefits of cultural and popular nutraceuticals (plant derived chemicals and extracts), validating nanoparticle DNA-based biosensors for the detection of microbial pathogens, and assessing the potential environmental and health effects of nanoparticles. Using both in vitro and in vivo models, Professor Vetrone and her students explore the health, immunological, and anti-proliferative effects of effects of nutraceuticals or synthetic nanoparticles on longevity, reproduction, metabolism, and immune function of human cancer cell lines and the nematode model, Caenorhabditis elegans. Through this research work, Professor Vetrone and her students aim to better understand the mechanisms through which natural supplements impact the cellular integrity of organisms, and how they may be harnessed for therapeutic purposes. Additionally, her research team validates nanoparticle DNA-based biosensors for the use in detection of bacterial pathogens in liquid and solid foodstuffs, that pose potential health and bioterrorism threats.