(July 22, 2011)

Contact: Patty Roberts, Centenary Marketing & Communication, 318.869.5747

Centenary Undergraduate Presents Research at International Conference

SHREVEPORT, LA — Centenary College graduating senior Frank Petitto was recently honored in being selected to present at an international conference based upon his impressive undergraduate research in biophysics.

Frank Petitto along with Daniel Raleigh, Protein Society president

He presented his research "Amyloidogenesis Rate of Alpha-Lactalbumin III in the Presence of Hydrophobic and Hydrophilic Interfaces" at the annual European Society of the Protein Society in Stockholm, Sweden. Pettito embarked on his journey to the conference after receiving funds from the SGA (Student Government Association) and the Student Domestic Travel Fund, which is sponsored by the Provost's Office and the Women's Endowment Quorum (WEQ). The Student Domestic Travel Fund supports student travel for presentations of scholarly and creative works.

Petitto was chosen for the Young Investigator Award by the Protein Society, an honor rarely bestowed upon an undergraduate. The Protein Society, a member of the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology, is an international non-profit organization dedicated to the study of protein molecules.

In collaboration with Assistant Professor of Physics Dr. Troy Messina, Petitto's research examined the rate at which proteins misbehave in particular microscopic environments found in the body. Known as amyloidogenesis, this protein misbehavior is implicated in over twenty diseases, including Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, and Type II diabetes.

Returning home to New Jersey, Petitto is continuing his research in protein-related diseases throughout the summer at Princeton University under the mentorship of Dr. Michael Hecht.

About Centenary College of Louisiana

Centenary College is a private, four-year arts and sciences college affiliated with the United Methodist Church. Founded in 1825, it is the oldest chartered liberal arts college west of the Mississippi River and is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools. Centenary is one of 16 colleges and universities constituting the Associated Colleges of the South and has been recognized as "One of the Best 371 Colleges" by the Princeton Review and one of "America's Best Colleges" and one of "America's Best Private Colleges" by Forbes.com. In 2008 Centenary College celebrated 100 years in Shreveport and Bossier City.