Undergraduate Honors Thesis Projects

Date of Award


Document Type

Honors Paper

Degree Name

Biochemistry and Molecular Biology-BS


Biochemistry and Molecular Biology


Dr. John Tansey

First Committee Member

Dr. John Tansey

Second Committee Member

Dr. Joan Esson

Third Committee Member

Dr. Halard Lescinsky


Perilipin 5, Perilipin 5b, Lipid Droplets, Western Blot

Subject Categories

Amino Acids, Peptides, and Proteins | Biochemical Phenomena, Metabolism, and Nutrition | Higher Education | Medical Biochemistry


The drastic increase in lipid-associated metabolic disorders has led to an increasing necessity to study the PAT family of proteins. These proteins, which coat the surface of fat droplets inside of the cell, lead to the binding of lipids to various organs which can cause health problems. Previous research has found that one of these proteins, Perilipin 5 (PLIN5), plays a role in the hepatic fat accumulation that can lead to Non-Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease (NAFLD). The increasing prevalence of NAFLD is concerning due to its ability to progress into hepatocellular carcinoma which is one of the most fatal types of cancer. A splice variant of PLIN5 has been detected and termed Perilipin 5b (PLIN5b). It is currently unknown if one’s metabolic condition can affect the presence or absence of the splice variant. Using mice that have been fed and fasted, the difference in the concentration or the presence of the splice variant was examined under varying metabolic states. The difference in concentrations between PLIN5 and its splice variant could correlate to the abundance of lipids that have not been broken down in the liver and the development of NAFLD. In this project, western blots were ran using the tissues from the mice that had been varied metabolically. Both PLIN5 and PLIN5b were found in the tissues; however, differences were found in the size of the splice variant which gives evidence for different post-translational modifications between different metabolic states.

Licensing Permission

Copyright, all rights reserved. Fair Use

Acknowledgement 2


Available for download on Sunday, April 16, 2028