Interactive Sessions - Kids' Tech University (KTU) at SWVAC    
Dr. Zachary Mackey October 17, 2016
Are there better ways to cure those weird parasitic diseases?

An interactive session led by Dr. Zachary Mackey

Assistant Professor of Biochemistry at Virginia Tech

Parasites are organisms that survive by obtaining its nutrients form the host. Some parasites cause weird or nasty diseases that are difficult or sometimes even impossible to cure. In some cases, the drugs that are used to treat these parasites are even more unusual than the diseases caused by the parasite. Why is that? The answer to that question is complex, but mostly can be attributed to the fact that some of the drugs used to for treatment in parasitic diseases were developed nearly a century ago. My talk will cover strategies of developing new drugs to treat parasitic diseases. I will also talk about different strategies for discovering genes in parasites that can be targeted to cure some of the parasites that cause serious diseases.

Dr. Zachary Mackey is an Assistant Professor of Biochemistry at Virginia Tech. His research career has included studying cancer and parasitic diseases. His research interest focuses on understanding the DNA replication machinery in protozoan parasites.

October 2016 - Hands-On Exhibits
After the interactive session the students will be escorted by their parents to have lunch and then to the hands-on portion of the event. There the students will enjoy the experience of interacting with various exhibits.