PIPETTE GAZETTE – Meet The Researcher: Aiola Stoja and her love for dogs, hiking and cancer research (Bishop Lab)

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Aiola Stoja PayneWhile Aiola Stoja Payne was volunteering as an emergency medical technician (EMT), she learned about a new substance that was just being implemented in emergency medicine. She was taught that this substance was a powder that you put directly on the wound site and was more helpful than just gauze alone to help with bleeding.

“A few days later, in my molecular biology class, the professor brought up blood coagulation and how chitin-interestingly one of the main proteins in crustacean exoskeletons-promoted blood coagulation and was in fact being used clinically in emergency medicine,” she said. “That was when I realized I wanted to go into research. I think I switched to my biotechnology major something like the next week or so because I was just so excited at how the research was able to make everything come full circle in saving patients’ lives.”

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Since 2004, UT Health San Antonio, Greehey Children’s Cancer Research Institute’s (Greehey CCRI) mission has been to advance scientific knowledge relevant to childhood cancer, contribute to the understanding of its causes, and accelerate the translation of knowledge into novel therapies. Through discovery, development, and dissemination of new scientific knowledge, Greehey CCRI strives to have a national and global impact on childhood cancer. Our mission consists of three key areas — research, clinical, and education.

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