Angie Jasper is a student in the South Texas Medical Scientist Training Program (MD/PhD program) studying double-strand DNA break repair in the lab of Dr. Patrick Sung. For her dissertation work, she is investigating the DNA and RAD51 binding attributes of BRCA1-BARD1 and how these interactions contribute to DNA repair processes and genomic maintenance. She is working to precisely map the interaction interfaces of BRCA1 and BARD1 with DNA and RAD51 using biochemical and structural methods. In addition, Angie is studying the functionality of these interactions in different steps of DNA repair processes like homologous recombination and replication fork protection to better understand how loss of functional BRCA1-BARD1 leads to genomic instability and cancer. For her clinical specialty, Angie is considering pursuing medical oncology.
My name is Angie Jasper, and I started as a student in the STX-MSTP in 2018. I was born in St. Louis but moved to Wisconsin shortly before I started kindergarten. Throughout my grade school and high school years, my family lived in Muskego, a suburb of Milwaukee. For undergrad, I attended University of Wisconsin-Madison and majored in Biochemistry, graduating in 2018. I greatly benefited from the strong research at UW-Madison, and my positive experiences in research labs as an undergraduate student greatly motivated me to pursue an MD/PhD. Besides the academic environment at UW-Madison, I also enjoyed the biking around Madison in the summer, sledding down one of the big hills on campus in the winter, and enjoying ice cream and the occasional Spotted Cow (a Wisconsin brewed beer) by Lake Mendota. As an undergraduate student, I also participated in the undergraduate CPRIT summer program at UT Health San Antonio. This was my first time in Texas, and I had a great experience, prompting me to strongly consider and ultimately attend UTHSA for the next step of my education. In my free time, I enjoy hiking, exploring various restaurants in San Antonio, and playing soccer. I played soccer throughout grade school and high school, and I played club soccer in college. I adopted a dog, Casper Jasper, as a second-year medical student. Casper enjoys walking on the trail around the medical center, splooting on the cold floor during the summer, and squeaking his toys during Zoom meetings.
Playing soccer, dogs, St. Louis Cardinals, Wisconsin Badgers
DNA damage repair of double-strand breaks
Why I chose MD/PhD
I started out as a pre-med student as an undergraduate, but as I began to learn more about research through lab experience, I knew I wanted to continue to be involved in basic science research throughout my career. I felt I could make a bigger impact with the perspective of both a clinician and a scientist so I chose a career path where I would receive training in both. I hope to bring the both the basic science discoveries to the clinic and the struggles of those actually managing a disease to the lab to create new treatments and find new druggable targets.
Why I chose MD/PhD at UT Health San Antonio
I felt the training environment at UTHSA was incredibly supportive. Throughout my interview, the current students were friendly and helpful, and the program administrators continued to support me as an applicant throughout my application cycle. I had already spent a summer in San Antonio in the undergraduate CPRIT summer program, and I knew that the institution had both strong research and mentoring.
Hu, G., Rios, L., Yan, Z., Jasper, A. M., Luera, D., Luo, S., & Rao, H. (2020). Autophagy regulator Atg9 is degraded by the proteasome. Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications, 522(1), 254–258. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.bbrc.2019.11.089
Flores, S. K., Cheng, Z., Jasper, A. M., Natori, K., Okamoto, T., Tanabe, A., Gotoh, K., Shibata, H., Sakurai, A., Nakai, T., Wang, X., Zethoven, M., Balachander, S., Aita, Y., Young, W., Zheng, S., Takekoshi, K., Nakamura, E., Tothill, R. W., … Dahia, P. L. M. (2019). Synonymous but Not Silent: A Synonymous VHL Variant in Exon 2 Confers Susceptibility to Familial Pheochromocytoma and von Hippel-Lindau Disease. The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism, 104(9), 3826–3834. https://doi.org/10.1210/jc.2019-00235
B.S., Biochemistry, University of Wisconsin, 2018