Arizona Cancer Evolution Center (ACE)

Diamesha Battle

Welcome to our latest 2 interns, Diamesha Battle and Elizabeth (Beth) Hopewell!  They are based at North Carolina State University (NCSU) and working with ACE investigators and veterinarians, Drs Tara Harrison and Leigh Duke.  One of the projects the interns are working on is studying the incidence of cancer in exotic members of the canid family (canids are of the family that includes dogs/wolfs/ foxes/jackals) and Diamesha is currently making a research poster about this for the upcoming  Consortium for Canine Comparative Oncology (C3O)  Symposium.  She is delighted by the opportunities that ACE is giving her.

I wanted to be a part of this research because it is a great opportunity and experience for vet school. I also wanted to experience being actually a part of the data gathering side of research. Tara and Leigh, are very passionate about Cancer in exotic animals and trying to make that side of veterinary medicine better. That really made me excited!”   

Our other intern in North Carolina is Elizabeth (Beth) Hopewell.  Beth is also a senior in biological sciences and she is working on a meta-analysis of amphibians with cancer. She is also producing a poster for the C30 Symposium.    

Beth Hopewell

“I have never worked on a research project before, so this is my first one. However, I am very excited to be working on it!”    

Soon Diamesha and Beth will be learning to go through medical records from zoos and exotic animal practices nationwide and entering pertinent data into the special ESCRA Exotic tumor database, which was created in the lab at NCSU. This database is looking at trends, treatments, and survival time of non-domestic species with cancer.  Meanwhile, the interns have gained experience looking at scientific papers and conducting searches in major databases like Pubmed, Cab Abstracts, and Web of Science Zoological Record. Then they learned how to use special statistics software to analyze their retrieved data. It’s certainly a busy time for Diamesha and Beth! 

Savannah White and Maribel Garcia-Kedelty are our two ACE interns at ASU.  They are looking at biological mechanisms in cancer in animals with the ultimate goal of comparing these to those that occur in humans.  Savannah and Maribel are both Diné (Navajo), and deeply connected to their cultural roots.  It is wonderful to have them share their perspective on life with us in ACE!  Reach their stories in their own words below.