1st Student's Major

Chemistry and Geology

1st Student's College

Science, Engineering and Technology

Students' Professional Biography

Recipient of Minnesota State University, Mankato Foundation Grant. Nicole Jorissen is currently a junior at Minnesota State University, Mankato studying Biochemistry. She is involved in several clubs on campus and is the treasurer of the MSU Chem Club on campus. She also does work study with the Chemistry faculty and works in the labs most time gaining experience that will be helpful for grad school. She plans to attend Purdue or the University of Pennsylvania in the fall of 2010. She hopes to obtain her PhD. in molecular genetics with an emphasis in biochemical reactions. She is also a current McNair scholar and has presented at two national conferences. She recently presented at the NCUR conference in MD and the URC conference at MSU Mankato. She currently resides in Mankato, MN.

Mentor's Name

Theresa Salerno

Mentor's Email Address


Mentor's Department

Chemistry and Geology

Mentor's College

Science, Engineering and Technology


In this project, we developed a Western blotting procedure to semi-quantitate levels of 11β-HSD1 and 11β-HSD2 in whole cell extracts. Then, we applied this technique to analyze the effect of reduced maternal aldosterone levels on the expression of 11β-HSD1 and 11β-HSD2 isoenzymes in the placental tissue in both normal and hypertensive rats. These enzymes control levels of glucocorticoids which compete for aldosterone’s mineralocorticoid receptor. Overstimulation of this receptor results in hypertension. If aldosterone levels decrease, levels of the enzymes controlling active glucocorticoid concentrations might change to compensate for the lowered aldosterone levels. Decreased placental 11β-HSD2 expression could affect hypertension in the offspring. The Western blotting procedure was optimized for the detection of the two isoenzymes in their dimeric forms. The use of multiple protein levels on the blot was useful to obtain a more reliable semi-quantitation. Because of the presence of multiple bands, it was impossible to use an internal beta actin standard to normalize the data from one blot to another. This along with the low expression levels and uneven blot backgrounds made it difficult to obtain enough data on the expression of the two isoenzymes. Very limited data do not support differences in the placental expression of the two isoenzymes when maternal aldosterone levels are lowered.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License



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