Destiny M. O’Neill at a lab table with a lit bunson burner and lab equipment

Destiny M. O’Neill, a biology undergraduate student working with Dr. Edward D’Antonio at the University of South Carolina Beaufort, seeks community donations to support her drug discovery research in Brazil.

Destiny has been invited to the Laboratório Nacional de Biociências in Campinas, Brazil for five weeks in summer 2024. There, she will work with Dr. Gustavo F. Mercaldi to test bacteria collected from a Great White Shark near Hilton Head Island, South Carolina. Your donation will help fund her travel and accommodations in Brazil.

In tests at USCB, one bacterium isolate revealed confirmed antibiotic properties against pathogenic bacteria, including MRSA. Supervised by Dr. Mercaldi, Destiny will perform further testing against a panel of BSL-1 and BSL-2 pathogen. She will also test for anti-infective activity against the parasite Trypanosoma cruzi, which causes Chagas’ disease (a tropical disease of Latin America that can be fatal). If bioactivity is observed, this will accelerate drug discovery involving novel marine anti-infective therapeutics.

“I’m passionate about medicine, research and healthcare, and I’m honored to have this opportunity. It’s imperative that we keep progressing to expand treatment options for patients.” -Destiny M. O’Neill

Help USCB Biology Major Destiny O”Neill Conduct Drug Discovery Research in Brazil

by donating to the USCB Neglected Tropical Diseases Research Fund

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