Alessandra Della Porta

Mentor: Dr. Daniel Gibson
College of Medicine
 
"I became involved in research so that I would be able to be a part of the groundbreaking work that moves medicine forward. The importance of the collaboration between physicians and scientists cannot be understated. I aspire to become an orthopedic surgeon, so the choice to research surgical infections has allowed me to understand the importance that microbiological and basic science has on my future career."

Major

Microbiology and Cell Science

Minor

Medical Anthropology

Research Interests

  • Biofilms
  • Surgical Site Infections
  • Wound Care

Academic Awards

  • Mayo Clinic Undergraduate Research Fellowship Summer 2016
  • University Scholars Program 2016

Organizations

  • Sigma Alpha Professional Sorority
  • Center for Undergraduate Research Board of Students
  • Girl Scouts of Gateway Council

Volunteer

  • American Red Cross
  • UF Health Shands Hospital
  • Mentor UF

Hobbies and Interests

  • Agricultural Education
  • Ceramics/Pottery
  • Gator Football

Research Description

Protocol For Biofilm Evaluation On Explanted Orthopedic Implants
Surgical Site Infections (SSI's) account for 20% of all hospital acquired infections. SSI's cause long term health burdens for patients and the healthcare system. In addition to patient risk factors and poor surgical conditions, one other hypothesis to explain occurrence is the development of a biofilm. Biofilms are complex microbial communities that exhibit different properties than their planktonic counterparts, namely antibiotic resistance. My research aims to develop a stain for detecting biofilms in real time at the orthopedic surgical site. The possible detection of biofilms will drastically change how these infections are diagnosed and treated.