Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Biomedical and Chemical Engineering and Sciences

First Advisor

Karen Kim Guisbert

Second Advisor

Melissa Borgen

Third Advisor

Spencer Fire

Fourth Advisor

Manolis Tomadakis


The fields of genetics and molecular biology have grown exponentially in the knowledge and ability to edit DNA sequences. The discovery of DNA structure in the 1950s and enzymes that are able to make site-specific cuts in the 1970s allowed scientists to harness growth in the field of genetic engineering and develop realistic gene therapies for diseases. In my thesis, I will utilize cutting-edge technology to be the first person at Florida Tech to genetically engineer two different model systems. Using CRISPR, I will study the molecular mechanisms of fertilization by introducing a genetically encoded reporter in C. elegans. Additionally, I will use CRISPR in cultured human cells to study the specific transcriptional regulation of the master regulator of the heat shock response, HSF1.