Recent News http://moqichen.com/articles.rss Recent News for College of Biological Sciences en Bios Magazine: Making Sense of Your Perceptions http://moqichen.com/news/bios-magazine-perceptions <span class="field field--name-title field--type-string field--label-hidden">Bios Magazine: Making Sense of Your Perceptions</span> <span class="field field--name-uid field--type-entity-reference field--label-hidden"> <span lang="" about="/user/16" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">David Slipher</span> </span> <span class="field field--name-created field--type-created field--label-hidden">January 10, 2020</span> <div class="field field--name-field-sf-primary-image field--type-image field--label-hidden field__item"> <img src="/sites/g/files/dgvnsk2646/files/styles/sf_landscape_16x9/public/images/article/Jochen-Ditterich-Wilsaan-Joiner-UC-Davis.jpg?h=56d0ca2e&amp;itok=dkLU77Ht" width="1280" height="720" alt="Jochen Ditterich and Wilsaan Joiner" title="UC Davis College of Biological Sciences neuroscientists like Jochen Ditterich and Wilsaan Joiner are exploring new ways to understand how our brains make sense of our perceptions, in hopes to help diagnose and fight these debilitating conditions. David Slipher/UC Davis" typeof="foaf:Image" class="image-style-sf-landscape-16x9" /> </div> <div class="addthis_toolbox addthis_default_style addthis_32x32_style" addthis:url="http://moqichen.com/bios-.xml" addthis:title="Bios " addthis:description="Quick Summary UC Davis researchers are exploring new ways  to help diagnose and fight debilitating conditions like schizophrenia, dementia and Parkinson&#039;s A key to understanding our visual processes is the brain’s capability to anticipate a change in sensory information due to self-movement This guidance system allows you to distinguish the source of environmental changes that occur and likely contributes to performing rapid motor activities MAKING SENSE OF YOUR PERCEPTIONS When you step into Wilsaan Joiner&#039;s lab, the foosball table in the corner might seem a bit out of place. But for Joiner’s research on perception and eye movement, playing a simple game can tell you a lot about how your visual system works. Your eyes are amazing sensors. Visual information sweeps across the retinas so fast that what you perceive should be a blur. However, your visual system smooths the action like an image stabilization tool for shaky camera shots. Your brain constantly applies corrections, providing a seamless picture of your world. In the brains of people who have schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and other mental illnesses, these unconscious functions are in disarray, blurring the lines between internal and external sensations. “Your central nervous system is making constant predictions about your body all the time,” says Joiner, an assistant professor of neurobiology, physiology and behavior. “It’s always going on in the background and you’re not typically aware of it. But when you can’t do it, it has pronounced consequences that are fairly devastating. You can’t make sense of many of the common things we experience in the world.” UC Davis College of Biological Sciences neuroscientists like Joiner and his colleague Jochen Ditterich are exploring new ways to understand how our brains make sense of our perceptions, in hopes to help diagnose and fight these debilitating conditions. With a simple visual test, Joiner can evaluate corollary discharge in both non-human primates and humans with schizophrenia. David Slipher/UC DavisTo fool the eye—or brain? A key to understanding our visual processes is the concept of “corollary discharge,” a term that describes the brain’s capability to anticipate a change in sensory information due to self-movement. This guidance system allows you to distinguish the source of changes that occur in our environment and likely contributes to performing rapid activities, like hitting a baseball.  Another way to think about this internal, unconscious signal is to consider how it’s impossible to tickle yourself. Somehow, your brain recognizes your self-initiated movement and betrays the physical stimulation you’re trying to induce. In healthy brains, the thalamus likely conveys this information with great fidelity. But schizophrenic patients have perceptual difficulty with tasks that rely on corollary discharge, including identification of visual changes in the environment. It’s unclear whether this difficulty is related to the transmission or actual utilization of the signal. Without it, test subjects will make a perceptual decision solely based on visual information rather than some combination of internal knowledge of our movements and the experienced visual information. With a simple visual test, Joiner can evaluate corollary discharge in both non-human primates and humans with schizophrenia. In the experiments, which involve eye movements and perceptual decisions, Joiner found subjects relying solely on visual information consistently make the wrong choices. “It’s only when you have this kind of deficit that you have more pronounced perceptual symptoms,” says Joiner. “So what this is showing is a somewhat simple visual perception task that correlates very well to the extent that you have delusions and hallucinations.” While the absence of these internal signal cues reveals a larger void in our understanding of the origins of psychosis, it provides clues about how individuals with mental illness perceive themselves and the origins of their thoughts and ideas. Joiner’s research suggests that deficits in corollary discharge may be an accurate and objective tool for diagnosing mental health conditions with psychotic symptoms. Joiner discovered that as an individual’s deficit in corollary discharge increases, their sense of agency (e.g., ownership over thoughts or actions) decreases. This behavior can lead to trouble recognizing self-caused vs. externally caused sensations, which may lead to confusion, hearing voices and other psychoses. Joiner’s long-term hope is that the absence of corollary discharge may help provide a simple, but objective litmus test that clinicians can use to accurately identify and develop treatments for these neurological diseases. “If you have deficits in transmitting or utilizing corollary discharge signals, it speaks to higher mental disorders that are very pronounced, but we don’t quite understand,” says Joiner. Ditterich’s research suggests that patients with Parkinson&#039;s experience problems using previous knowledge when making decisions. David Slipher/UC DavisThe power of decision-making If you hear an unfamiliar sound in the woods, your survival could depend on making a rapid decision with very limited information. Ditterich, an associate professor of neurobiology, physiology and behavior, wants to better understand how our brains make such quick decisions. He evaluates this process through a “decisional threshold,” which describes the amount of information you want to collect before you commit to a particular choice. For any scenario, the goal is to find a tradeoff between maximizing the accuracy of the decision and minimizing the time it takes to do so. With the clear and precise diction of his German accent, combined with a system engineer’s analytical perspective, Ditterich methodically outlines his plan to transform the way we treat neurological and psychiatric diseases that involve cognitive deficits. “Implanting a technical device called a deep brain stimulator (DBS), has become a viable treatment option for patients with motor disorders, like Parkinson’s, that do not respond well to drug therapy,” says Ditterich. “Using a more intelligent version of stimulation, we might at some point be able to treat cognitive deficits resulting from neurological or mental disorders that are also difficult to treat with medications.” His approach is ambitious, but if successful, it could one day improve cognitive functioning related to decision-making, attention, memory and more. The basic idea is to design an intelligent, implantable device that directly communicates with the brain and steers it in an attempt to restore healthy neural signaling. In concept, such an advanced device would monitor and decode a patient’s neural activity and dynamically stimulate the brain to achieve a desired state. But first, Ditterich needs to understand precisely how cognitive functions are implemented within a healthy brain. While this scenario may sound like science fiction, implants are already being used on a regular basis to treat patients with Parkinson’s. They are also being tested to treat conditions like depression and obsessive-compulsive disorder. But these devices aren’t particularly intelligent. Instead of responding to dynamic brain states, the current generation of stimulators provides only constant and steady stimulation. Parkinson’s is generally thought of as a motor disorder, but it turns out patients experience cognitive deficits as well, including decision-making deficits, which are not typically addressed through current treatment options. Ditterich’s research suggests that these patients experience problems using previous knowledge when making decisions. It’s not a learning problem but an implementation problem, and the patients’ decision thresholds cannot adjust appropriately. Jochen Ditterich envisions a future in which intelligent, implantable device can monitor and respond to changes in brain activity. The device would communicate with the brain using electrical impulses to steer and restore healthy neural signaling. ATS/UC DavisLifting the neural veil By compiling neural activity from healthy brains during different decision-making situations, Ditterich can use machine learning to plot an optimal decision path for any scenario. It’s like coming up with enough evidence for a choice before the exact moment of committing to it. And amazingly, the data shows that in healthy brains the decision process is an approximation of a statistically optimal algorithm. Your healthy brain operates across a vast distributed network involving the frontal cortex, parietal cortex, basal ganglia and other subcortical areas that collectively compute different outcomes simultaneously. You can take pride that the final results of your “organic computing” are on par with even the most advanced supercomputers. This staggering concept is what first drew Ditterich to neuroscience. An electrical engineer by training, he began investigating how the eye recalibrates during movement, similar to Joiner’s research on visual perception. For Ditterich, who sees the central nervous system as the ultimate information processor, “there are some things that are just very, very hard to do with machines that the brain can accomplish with ease. We have to figure out how, ” he says. “As engineers, we know a lot about how machines process information. You can use all the mathematics and the engineering tools behind that to analyze what’s going on biologically, to reverse-engineer the brain,” he adds. While such advanced implantable devices are still a ways off, Ditterich is already in talks with control engineers at UC Davis to explore machine guidance. “They know very well how to steer airplanes and navigate other complex technical systems,” says Ditterich. “Could we use this understanding to steer the brain into a particular desired state?” Now Ditterich is collaborating with UC Davis Health clinicians to monitor brain activity in patients receiving a DBS implant. He conducts research performing the same perceptual decision tests in both humans and rhesus monkeys.“ We use identical tasks to understand how cognitive functions work in humans and can be validated in non-human primates,” Ditterich says. “Behaviorally, in visual decision-making tasks, we find very, very similar results.” Reframing your world Your eye movement and decision-making processes are things you probably take for granted. Your identity is intimately connected to your ability and independence to make decisions. But imagine if you couldn’t answer, “Who’s in control?” How would this impact your routine decisions, like “What will I eat for lunch? What do I do next in my day?” These are the very real challenges that people with cognitive deficits face every day. Fortunately, building the foundations to diagnose and treat these conditions is a driving force for Joiner and Ditterich and many other faculty and student researchers at UC Davis. They’re pushing the boundaries of knowledge to make sense of our world, and to help us make sense of our place in it. Stay Informed! Sign up for our monthly email newsletter "> <a class="addthis_button_facebook"></a> <a class="addthis_button_linkedin"></a> <script> var addthis_share = { templates: { twitter: "UC Davis College of Biological Sciences neuroscientists like Wilsaan Joiner and Jochen Ditterich are exploring new ways to understand how our brains make sense of our perceptions, in hopes to help diagnose and fight debilitating conditions like schizophrenia and bipolar disorder. " } } </script> <a class="addthis_button_twitter"></a> <a class="addthis_button_email"></a> <a class="addthis_button_compact"></a> </div> <div class="clearfix text-formatted field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field__item"><aside class="wysiwyg-feature-block u-width--half u-align--right"><h3 class="wysiwyg-feature-block__title">Quick Summary</h3> <div class="wysiwyg-feature-block__body"> <ul><li><strong><em><span>UC Davis researchers are exploring new ways  to help diagnose and fight debilitating </span><span>conditions like schizophrenia, dementia and Parkinson's</span></em></strong></li> <li><strong><em><span>A key to understanding our visual processes is </span><span>the brain’s capability to anticipate a change in </span><span>sensory information due to self-movement</span></em></strong></li> <li><strong><em><span>This guidance system allows you </span><span>to distinguish the source of environmental changes that occur and likely </span><span>contributes to performing rapid motor activities</span></em></strong></li> </ul></div> </aside><h2 class="heading--underline">MAKING SENSE OF YOUR PERCEPTIONS</h2> <p><span>W</span><span>hen you step into Wilsaan Joiner's lab</span><span>,</span><span> the foosball </span><span>table in the corner might seem a bit out of </span><span>place. But for Joiner’s </span><span>research on perception and eye movement, playing a simple game can tell you a lot </span><span>about how your visual system works.</span></p> <p><span>Your eyes are amazing sensors. Visual information sweeps across the retinas so fast </span><span>that what you perceive should be a blur. However, your visual system smooths the action like an image stabilization tool for shaky camera shots. Your brain constantly </span> <span>applies corrections, providing a seamless picture of your world</span>.</p> <p><span>In the brains of people who have schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and other mental </span><span>illnesses, these unconscious functions are in disarray, blurring the lines between </span><span>internal and external sensations. </span></p> <blockquote> <p><span>“Your central nervous system is making constant predictions about your body all </span><span>the time,” </span><span>says Joiner, an assistant professor of neurobiology, physiology and </span><span>behavior</span><span>.</span><span> “It’s always going on in the background and you’re not typically aware of it. </span><span>But when you can’t do it, it has pronounced consequences that are fairly devastating. </span><span>You can’t make sense of many of the common things we experience in the world.” </span></p> </blockquote> <p><span>UC Davis College of Biological Sciences neuroscientists like Joiner and his </span><span>colleague Jochen Ditterich</span><span> are exploring new ways to understand how our brains </span><span>make sense of our perceptions, in hopes to help diagnose and fight these debilitating </span><span>conditions.</span></p> <figure role="group" class="caption caption-img align-left"><img alt="Wilsaan Joiner" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="34e503a7-7ed6-476e-bcd5-d4ce71b024db" height="370" src="/sites/g/files/dgvnsk2646/files/inline-images/Wilsaan-Joiner-College-of-Biological-Sciences-UC-Davis.jpg" width="370" /><figcaption>With a simple visual test, Joiner can evaluate corollary discharge in both non-human primates and humans with schizophrenia. David Slipher/UC Davis</figcaption></figure><h4><span>To fool the eye—or brain? </span></h4> <p><span>A key to understanding our visual processes is the concept of “corollary </span><span>discharge,” a term that describes the brain’s capability to anticipate a change in </span><span>sensory information due to self-movement. This guidance system allows you </span><span>to distinguish the source of changes that occur in our environment and likely </span><span>contributes to performing rapid activities, like hitting a baseball</span>. </p> <p><span>Another way to think about this internal, unconscious signal is to consider how </span><span>it’s impossible to tickle yourself. Somehow, your brain recognizes your self-initiated </span><span>movement and betrays the physical stimulation you’re trying to induce. </span></p> <p><span>In healthy brains, the thalamus likely conveys this information with gr</span><span>eat fidelity. </span><span>But schizophrenic patients have perceptual difficulty with tasks that rely on corollary </span><span>discharge, including identification of visual changes in the environment. </span></p> <p><span>It’s unclear whether this difficulty is related to the transmission or actual utilization of </span><span>the signal. Without it, test subjects will make a perceptual decision solely based on visual </span><span>information rather than some combination of internal knowledge of our movements </span><span>and the experienced visual information. </span></p> <p><span>With a simple visual test, Joiner can evaluate corollary discharge in both non-human </span><span>primates and humans with schizophrenia. In the experiments, which involve eye </span><span>movements and perceptual decisions, Joiner found subjects relying solely on visual </span><span>information consistently make the wrong choices. </span></p> <blockquote> <p><span>“It’s only when you have this kind of deficit that you have more pronounced perceptual </span><span>symptoms,” says Joiner. “So what this is showing is a somewhat simple visual perception </span><span>task that correlates very well to the extent that you have delusions and hallucinations.”</span></p> </blockquote> <p><span>While the absence of these internal signal cues reveals a larger void in our </span><span>understanding of the origins of psychosis, it provides clues about how individuals </span><span>with mental illness perceive themselves and the origins of their thoughts and ideas. </span></p> <p><span>Joiner’s research suggests that deficits in </span><span>corollary discharge may be an accurate </span><span>and objective tool for diagnosing </span><span>mental health conditions with psychotic </span><span>symptoms. </span></p> <p><span>Joiner discovered that as an </span><span>individual’s deficit in corollary discharge </span><span>increases, their sense of agency (e.g., </span><span>ownership over thoughts or actions) </span><span>decreases. This behavior can lead to </span><span>trouble recognizing self-caused vs. </span><span>externally caused sensations, which may </span><span>lead to confusion, hearing voices and </span><span>other psychoses. </span></p> <p><span>Joiner’s long-term hope is that the </span><span>absence of corollary discharge may help </span><span>provide a simple, but objective litmus </span><span>test that clinicians can use to accurately </span><span>identify and develop treatments for these </span><span>neurological diseases.</span></p> <p><span>“If you have deficits in transmitting or </span><span>utilizing corollary discharge signals, it </span><span>speaks to higher mental disorders that </span><span>are very pronounced, but we don’t quite </span><span>understand,” says Joiner. </span></p> <figure role="group" class="caption caption-img align-left"><img alt="Jochen Ditterich" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="b70ad86e-526f-4eb3-972d-a27462cc5a8c" height="368" src="/sites/g/files/dgvnsk2646/files/inline-images/Jochen-Ditterich-College-of-Biological-Sciences-UC-Davis.jpg" width="368" /><figcaption>Ditterich’s research suggests that patients with Parkinson's experience problems using previous knowledge when making decisions. David Slipher/UC Davis</figcaption></figure><h4><span>The power of </span><span>decision-making</span></h4> <p><span>If you hear an unfamiliar sound </span><span>in the woods, your survival could </span><span>depend on making a rapid decision </span><span>with very limited information. </span></p> <p><span>Ditterich, an associate professor </span><span>of neurobiology, physiology and </span><span>behavior, </span><span>wants to better understand </span><span>how our brains make such quick </span><span>decisions. He evaluates this process </span><span>through a “decisional threshold,” </span><span>which describes the amount of </span><span>information you want to collect </span><span>before you commit to a particular </span><span>choice. For any scenario, the goal is </span><span>to find a tradeoff between maximizing </span><span>the accuracy of the decision and </span><span>minimizing the time it takes to do so. </span></p> <p><span>With the clear and precise diction </span><span>of his German accent, combined </span><span>with a system engineer’s analytical </span><span>perspective, Ditterich methodically </span><span>outlines his plan to transform the way </span><span>we treat neurological and psychiatric </span><span>diseases that involve cognitive deficits. </span></p> <blockquote> <p><span>“Implanting a technical device </span><span>called a deep brain stimulator (DBS), </span><span>has become a viable treatment option </span><span>for patients with motor disorders, </span><span>like Parkinson’s, that do not respond </span><span>well to drug therapy,” says Ditterich. </span><span>“Using a more intelligent version of </span><span>stimulation, we might at some point </span><span>be able to treat cognitive deficits </span><span>resulting from neurological or mental </span><span>disorders that are also difficult to treat </span><span>with medications.”</span></p> </blockquote> <p><span>His approach is ambitious, but if </span><span>successful, it could one day improve </span><span>cognitive functioning related to </span><span>decision-making, attention, memory </span><span>and more. The basic idea is to design </span><span>an intelligent, implantable device </span><span>that directly communicates with the </span><span>brain and steers it in an attempt to </span><span>restore healthy neural signaling. In concept, such an advanced device </span><span>would monitor and decode a patient’s neural activity </span><span>and dynamically stimulate the brain to achieve a desired </span><span>state. But first, Ditterich needs to understand precisely </span><span>how cognitive functions are implemented within a </span><span>healthy brain.</span></p> <p><span>While this scenario may sound like science fiction, </span><span>implants are already being used on a regular basis to </span><span>treat patients with Parkinson’s. They are also being </span><span>tested to treat conditions like depression and obsessive-</span><span>compulsive disorder. But these devices aren’t particularly </span><span>intelligent. Instead of responding to dynamic brain </span><span>states, the current generation of stimulators provides </span><span>only constant and steady stimulation. </span></p> <p><span>Parkinson’s is generally thought of as a motor disorder, </span><span>but it turns out patients experience cognitive deficits as </span><span>well, including decision-making deficits, which are not </span><span>typically addressed through current treatment options.</span></p> <p><span>Ditterich’s research suggests that these patients </span><span>experience problems using previous knowledge when </span><span>making decisions. It’s not a learning problem but an </span><span>implementation problem, and the patients’ decision </span><span>thresholds cannot adjust appropriately.</span></p> <figure role="group" class="caption caption-img align-right"><img alt="abstract illustration of a human head with computer circuits" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="16f12f38-f53c-4f2c-b940-9a3f507c5662" height="418" src="/sites/g/files/dgvnsk2646/files/inline-images/Senses-Feature-Story-Brain-Illustrations.jpg" width="534" /><figcaption>Jochen Ditterich envisions a future in which intelligent, implantable device can monitor and respond to changes in brain activity. The device would communicate with the brain using electrical impulses to steer and restore healthy neural signaling. ATS/UC Davis</figcaption></figure><h4><span>Lifting the neural veil</span></h4> <p><span>By compiling neural activity from healthy brains </span><span>during different decision-making situations, Ditterich </span><span>can use machine learning to plot an optimal decision </span><span>path for any scenario. It’s like coming up with enough </span><span>evidence for a choice before the exact moment of </span><span>committing to it. And amazingly, the data shows that in </span><span>healthy brains the decision process is an approximation </span><span>of a statistically optimal algorithm. </span></p> <p><span>Your healthy brain operates across a vast distributed </span><span>network involving the frontal cortex, parietal cortex, </span><span>basal ganglia and other subcortical areas that collectively </span><span>compute different outcomes simultaneously. You </span><span>can take pride that the final results of your “organic </span><span>computing” are on par with even the most advanced </span><span>supercomputers. </span></p> <p><span>This staggering concept is what first drew Ditterich </span><span>to neuroscience. An electrical engineer by training, he </span><span>began investigating how the eye recalibrates during </span><span>movement, similar to Joiner’s research on visual </span><span>perception. </span></p> <p><span>For Ditterich, who sees the central nervous system </span><span>as the ultimate information processor, “there are some </span><span>things that are just very, very hard to do with machines </span><span>that the brain can accomplish with ease. We have to </span><span>figure out how, ” he says. </span></p> <blockquote> <p><span>“As engineers, we know a lot about how machines process </span><span>information. You can use all the mathematics and the </span><span>engineering tools behind that to analyze what’s going on </span><span>biologically, to reverse-engineer the brain,” he adds. </span></p> </blockquote> <p><span>While such advanced implantable devices are still a ways </span><span>off, Ditterich is already in talks with control engineers at UC </span><span>Davis to explore machine guidance. “They know very well </span><span>how to steer airplanes and navigate other complex technical </span><span>systems,” says Ditterich. “Could we use this understanding to </span><span>steer the brain into a particular desired state?”</span></p> <p><span>Now Ditterich is collaborating with UC Davis Health </span><span>clinicians to monitor brain activity in patients receiving a DBS </span><span>implant. He conducts research performing the same perceptual </span><span>decision tests in both humans and rhesus monkeys.</span><span>“</span></p> <p><span>We use identical tasks to understand how cognitive </span><span>functions work in humans and can be validated in non-</span><span>human primates,” Ditterich says. “Behaviorally, in visual </span><span>decision-making tasks, we find very, very similar results.”</span></p> <h4><span>Reframing your world</span></h4> <p><span>Your eye movement and decision-making processes </span><span>are things you probably take for granted. Your identity is </span><span>intimately connected to your ability and independence to </span><span>make decisions. </span></p> <p><span>But imagine if you couldn’t answer, “Who’s in control?” How </span><span>would this impact your routine decisions, like “What will I eat </span><span>for lunch? What do I do next in my day?” These are the very </span><span>real challenges that people with cognitive deficits face every day. </span></p> <p><span>Fortunately, building the foundations to diagnose and treat </span><span>these conditions is a driving force for Joiner and Ditterich and </span><span>many other faculty and student researchers at UC Davis.</span></p> <p><span>They’re pushing the boundaries </span><span>of knowledge to make </span><span>sense of our world, </span><span>and to help us </span><span>make sense of </span><span>our place in it.</span></p> <p class="text-align-center"><em><strong><a class="btn--lg btn--primary" href="http://moqichen.com/form/tell-us-more-about-yourself-2">Stay Informed! Sign up for our monthly email newsletter</a></strong></em></p> <p class="text-align-center"><em><strong><img alt="Eyeball" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="5806e434-7c67-4af4-a78e-3a3acd463520" height="121" src="/sites/g/files/dgvnsk2646/files/inline-images/Senses_Feature_Story_Eyeball.png" width="179" /></strong></em></p> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-sf-article-category field--type-entity-reference field--label-above"> <div class="field__label">Category</div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/articles/human-animal-health" hreflang="en">Human and Animal Health</a></div> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-sf-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-above"> <div class="field__label">Tags</div> <div class="field__items"> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/bios-magazine" hreflang="en">Bios Magazine</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/neurobiology-physiology-and-behavior" hreflang="en">Department of Neurobiology, Physiology and Behavior</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/center-neuroscience" hreflang="en">Center for Neuroscience</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/neuroscience-graduate-group" hreflang="en">Neuroscience Graduate Group</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/vision" hreflang="en">Vision</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/human-disease" hreflang="en">human disease</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/human-health" hreflang="en">human health</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/brain-research" hreflang="en">brain research</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/robotics" hreflang="en">robotics</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/neuroscience" hreflang="en">neuroscience</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/school-medicine" hreflang="en">School of Medicine</a></div> </div> </div> Fri, 10 Jan 2020 16:25:14 +0000 David Slipher 3816 at http://moqichen.com Global Aggies: A Summer Researching in Japan http://moqichen.com/news/global-aggies-summer-researching-japan <span class="field field--name-title field--type-string field--label-hidden">Global Aggies: A Summer Researching in Japan</span> <span class="field field--name-uid field--type-entity-reference field--label-hidden"> <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype=""> (not verified)</span> </span> <span class="field field--name-created field--type-created field--label-hidden">January 08, 2020</span> <div class="field field--name-field-sf-primary-image field--type-image field--label-hidden field__item"> <img src="/sites/g/files/dgvnsk2646/files/styles/sf_landscape_16x9/public/images/article/overlay6.png?h=c673cd1c&amp;itok=SiUvZm12" width="1280" height="720" alt="UC Davis global disease biology major Amanda Nguyen conducting lab work at the National Institute of Genetics in Mishima, Japan." title="UC Davis global disease biology major Amanda Nguyen conducting lab work at the National Institute of Genetics in Mishima, Japan." typeof="foaf:Image" class="image-style-sf-landscape-16x9" /> </div> <div class="addthis_toolbox addthis_default_style addthis_32x32_style" addthis:url="http://moqichen.com/articles.rss" addthis:title="Recent News" addthis:description="This past summer, Amanda Nguyen, a global disease biology major in the College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences, traveled just south of Tokyo, Japan, to research the memory of itch through the NIGINTERN Program—a competitive summer internship hosted by the National Institute of Genetics at the Graduate University for Advanced Studies (SOKENDAI). In addition to sightseeing and cultural activities, during her six-week stay, Nguyen worked alongside her assigned lab’s head professor, fellows and graduate students, developing and honing novel techniques for conducting laboratory research on the neurophysiology of itch and nerves. Nguyen resting her legs after reaching the Mt. Fuji Summit.This was not Nguyen’s first time in the lab; she had already been helping facilitate research in the lab of UC Davis College of Biological Sciences Distinguished Professor Earl Carstens since her first quarter on campus. “It all started in Dr. Carstens’ lab,” she says. “Because he is hugely involved in international projects and collaborations, I got the chance to work with a lot of the people who came through the lab, which was a really great experience because Dr. Carstens and the lab members encouraged me to shadow these visiting international scholars, professors and Fulbrighters so I could begin mastering the skills they were experts in.” One such international scholar was a visiting lab researcher, Assistant Professor Keiko Takanami, who was a fellow from the National Institute of Genetics as a part of the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (JSPS). She got to talking with Nguyen about her research back home: working in the field of itch from a neurophysiological perspective. “Once I started spending time with Dr. Takanami in the lab, she told me about the internship, which is how I ended up getting directly involved in working with people who have a love for international collaboration,” she says. For this internship, all students were expected to have some baseline knowledge about how to conduct lab research so that they could chip away at their respective projects, rather than spend time on instruction or learning how research works. “It was super intense!” says Nguyen. “But I really loved how it built upon the work I had been doing back in the U.S. And working with Dr. Takanami was really great because we were able to talk about what skills I wanted to learn and master in the time I was going to be in Japan.” Nguyen with Assistant Professor Takanami and Associate Professor Koide.“The idea behind this research is that in patients with conditions like atopic dermatitis or eczema, a condition usually caused by an inflammatory immune response, there is a heightened memory of itch,” she says, “which contributes to what we call the itch-scratch cycle.” This cycle starts with the awareness of an itchy spot on your body, which you scratch. That scratching could subsequently induce skin barrier damage—especially if you have a condition like atopic dermatitis or eczema—because you start scratching all the time. This can lead to inflammation, which induces more itch. And then the cycle starts all over again. Through research projects, Nguyen was able to help locate brain regions associated with itch-related memory using a plethora of techniques she hadn’t previously been exposed to, like a specific kind of staining method for analyzing the activated brain regions whenever the memory of itch was induced. While the NIGINTERN Program accepted nine undergraduate and graduate students in their pre-final years, Nguyen was the only student admitted from the U.S.—and the only student with previous research experience in the field, thanks to her years of work in Carstens’ Lab. “Even though the other students were predominantly from Europe and Asia, we all had this camaraderie because we were interested in the same kinds of things and were able to nerd out together on science,” she says. Researcher-Clinician in the Making In addition to her courses and research hours in the lab, Nguyen serves primarily homeless patients as the undergraduate manager of the Willow Clinic, a university-affiliated student-run clinic, and works as a student research assistant with the UC Davis Health Department of Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine. She hopes to pursue an M.D./Ph.D. track upon graduation. “Our lab is very itch-centered now, but Dr. Carstens has done great work in studying the neurophysiology of pain as well, and itch and pain go together in our field,” she says. “So that lab experience is what piqued my interest in this position and postgraduate study.” And as a global disease biology major, Nguyen counts herself lucky to be part of a program with a research practicum requirement. “At first I thought the practicum requirement would be daunting, but reflecting on it now it really encouraged me to take early steps to being part of a research lab during my undergraduate career,” she says. “The major has made me really conscious of being open to interdisciplinary work and getting involved in research early on, and I feel like that has made all the difference.”  This story originally appeared on the UC Davis Global Affairs website. Stay Informed! Sign up for our monthly email newsletter "> <a class="addthis_button_facebook"></a> <a class="addthis_button_linkedin"></a> <script> var addthis_share = { templates: { twitter: "This past summer, undergraduate Amanda Nguyen traveled just south of Tokyo, Japan, to research the memory of itch through the NIGINTERN Program—a competitive summer internship hosted by the National Institute of Genetics at the Graduate University for Advanced Studies (SOKENDAI). " } } </script> <a class="addthis_button_twitter"></a> <a class="addthis_button_email"></a> <a class="addthis_button_compact"></a> </div> <div class="clearfix text-formatted field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field__item"><p><span><span><span><span><span><span><span>This past summer, <strong>Amanda Nguyen, </strong>a </span></span></span></span><span><span><span><a href="http://www.ucdavis.edu/majors/global-disease-biology/">global disease biology major</a> in the <a href="http://caes.ucdavis.edu/">College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences</a>,</span></span></span><span><span><span><span> </span></span></span></span><span><span><span><span>traveled just south of Tokyo, Japan, to research the memory of itch through the </span></span></span></span><a href="http://www.nig.ac.jp/jimu/soken/intern/2019/index.html"><span><span><span>NIGINTERN Program</span></span></span></a><span><span><span>—</span></span></span><span><span><span><span>a competitive summer internship hosted by the National Institute of Genetics at the Graduate University for Advanced Studies (SOKENDAI).</span></span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span><span>In addition to sightseeing and cultural activities, during her six-week stay, Nguyen worked alongside her assigned lab’s head professor, fellows and graduate students, developing and honing novel techniques for conducting laboratory research on the neurophysiology of itch and nerves. </span></span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <figure role="group" class="caption caption-img"><img alt="Nguyen" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="d505d641-bdf3-45c5-9486-048a58757d1b" src="/sites/g/files/dgvnsk2646/files/inline-images/MED-CROP-Nguyen%25201.png" /><figcaption>Nguyen resting her legs after reaching the Mt. Fuji Summit.</figcaption></figure><p><span><span><span><span><span><span><span>This was not Nguyen’s first time in the lab; she had already been helping facilitate research in the lab of UC Davis <a href="http://moqichen.com/">College of Biological Sciences</a> Distinguished Professor <strong>Earl Carstens</strong> since her first quarter on campus.</span></span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span><span>“It all started in </span></span></span></span><a href="http://carstenslab.faculty.ucdavis.edu/"><span><span><span>Dr. Carstens’ lab</span></span></span></a><span><span><span><span>,” she says. “Because he is hugely involved in international projects and collaborations, I got the chance to work with a lot of the people who came through the lab, which was a really great experience because Dr. Carstens and the lab members encouraged me to shadow these visiting international scholars, professors and Fulbrighters so I could begin mastering the skills they were experts in.”</span></span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span><span>One such international scholar was a visiting lab researcher, Assistant Professor <strong>Keiko Takanami</strong>, who was a fellow from the National Institute of Genetics as a part of the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (JSPS). She got to talking with Nguyen about her research back home: working in the field of itch from a neurophysiological perspective.</span></span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <blockquote> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span><span>“Once I started spending time with Dr. Takanami in the lab, she told me about the internship, which is how I ended up getting directly involved in working with people who have a love for international collaboration,” she says.</span></span></span></span></span></span></span></p> </blockquote> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span><span>For this internship, all students were expected to have some baseline knowledge about how to conduct lab research so that they could chip away at their respective projects, rather than spend time on instruction or learning how research works.</span></span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span><span>“It was super intense!” says Nguyen. “But I really loved how it built upon the work I had been doing back in the U.S. And working with Dr. Takanami was really great because we were able to talk about what skills I wanted to learn and master in the time I was going to be in Japan.”</span></span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <figure role="group" class="caption caption-img"><img alt="Nguyen and professors" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="d233e04b-a6f1-4bd5-8aaf-5851ee54eea6" src="/sites/g/files/dgvnsk2646/files/inline-images/CROP-Nguyen%25202.png" /><figcaption>Nguyen with Assistant Professor Takanami and Associate Professor Koide.</figcaption></figure><p><span>“The idea behind this research is that in patients with conditions like atopic dermatitis or eczema, a condition usually caused by an inflammatory immune response, there is a heightened memory of itch,” she says, “which contributes to what we call the itch-scratch cycle.”</span></p> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span><span>This cycle starts with the awareness of an itchy spot on your body, which you scratch. That scratching could subsequently induce skin barrier damage—especially if you have a condition like atopic dermatitis or eczema—because you start scratching all the time. This can lead to inflammation, which induces more itch. And then the cycle starts all over again.</span></span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span><span>Through research projects, Nguyen was able to help locate brain regions associated with itch-related memory using a plethora of techniques she hadn’t previously been exposed to, like a specific kind of staining method for analyzing the activated brain regions whenever the memory of itch was induced.</span></span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span><span>While the NIGINTERN Program accepted nine undergraduate and graduate students in their pre-final years, Nguyen was the only student admitted from the U.S.—and the only student with previous research experience in the field, thanks to her years of work in Carstens’ Lab. </span></span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <blockquote> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span><span>“Even though the other students were predominantly from Europe and Asia, we all had this camaraderie because we were interested in the same kinds of things and were able to nerd out together on science,” she says.</span></span></span></span></span></span></span></p> </blockquote> <h4>Researcher-Clinician in the Making</h4> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span><span>In addition to her courses and research hours in the lab, Nguyen serves primarily homeless patients as the undergraduate manager of </span></span></span></span><a href="http://www.willowclinic.org/"><span><span><span>the Willow Clinic</span></span></span></a><span><span><span><span>, a university-affiliated student-run clinic, and works as a student research assistant with the </span></span></span></span><a href="http://health.ucdavis.edu/anesthesiology/"><span><span><span>UC Davis Health Department of Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine</span></span></span></a><span><span><span><span>. She hopes to pursue an M.D./Ph.D. track upon graduation. </span></span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span><span>“Our lab is very itch-centered now, but Dr. Carstens has done great work in studying the neurophysiology of pain as well, and itch and pain go together in our field,” she says. “So that lab experience is what piqued my interest in this position and postgraduate study.” </span></span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span><span>And as a global disease biology major, Nguyen counts herself lucky to be part of a program with a research practicum requirement.</span></span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span><span>“At first I thought the practicum requirement would be daunting, but reflecting on it now it really encouraged me to take early steps to being part of a research lab during my undergraduate career,” she says.</span></span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <blockquote> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span><span>“The major has made me really conscious of being open to interdisciplinary work and getting involved in research early on, and I feel like that has made all the difference.”  </span></span></span></span></span></span></span></p> </blockquote> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span><span><em><strong>This story originally appeared on the <a href="http://globalaffairs.ucdavis.edu/news/global-aggies-summer-researching-japan">UC Davis Global Affairs website</a>. </strong></em></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <p class="text-align-center"><em><strong><a class="btn--lg btn--primary" href="http://moqichen.com/form/tell-us-more-about-yourself-2">Stay Informed! Sign up for our monthly email newsletter</a></strong></em></p> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-sf-article-category field--type-entity-reference field--label-above"> <div class="field__label">Category</div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/articles/human-animal-health" hreflang="en">Human and Animal Health</a></div> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-sf-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-above"> <div class="field__label">Tags</div> <div class="field__items"> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/global-education" hreflang="en">global education</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/study-abroad" hreflang="en">study abroad</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/women-stem" hreflang="en">Women in STEM</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/neurobiology-physiology-and-behavior" hreflang="en">Department of Neurobiology, Physiology and Behavior</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/itch" hreflang="en">itch</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/mind-and-brain" hreflang="en">mind and brain</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/brain-research" hreflang="en">brain research</a></div> </div> </div> Wed, 08 Jan 2020 18:51:29 +0000 Anonymous 3811 at http://moqichen.com Growing Gratitude in the New Year: Jonathan Ho Plants Seeds of Community http://moqichen.com/news/growing-gratitude <span class="field field--name-title field--type-string field--label-hidden">Growing Gratitude in the New Year: Jonathan Ho Plants Seeds of Community</span> <span class="field field--name-uid field--type-entity-reference field--label-hidden"> <span lang="" about="/user/5451" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Greg Watry</span> </span> <span class="field field--name-created field--type-created field--label-hidden">January 03, 2020</span> <div class="field field--name-field-sf-primary-image field--type-image field--label-hidden field__item"> <img src="/sites/g/files/dgvnsk2646/files/styles/sf_landscape_16x9/public/images/article/Community-Garden-College-of-Biological-Sciences-UC-Davis-3.jpeg?h=a1b7c100&amp;itok=xwfda7nh" width="1280" height="720" alt="Volunteers at Knights Landing" title="Undergraduate Jonathan Ho, pictured in red, and his colleagues have raised over $50,000 for a community garden project in Knights Landing, with funds coming from the Donald A. Strauss Foundation, the Yolo County Health and Human Services Agency and the Blum Center for Developing Economies. Courtesy photo" typeof="foaf:Image" class="image-style-sf-landscape-16x9" /> </div> <div class="addthis_toolbox addthis_default_style addthis_32x32_style" addthis:url="http://moqichen.com/articles.rss" addthis:title="Recent News" addthis:description="Quick Summary Over the past three years, undergraduate Jonathan Ho and his colleagues have raised over $50,000 for a community garden project in Knights Landing While 2019 was fruitful, 2020 is looking to be a banner year for the Knights Landing Community Garden Ho and his colleagues will work with Yolo County to fully establish the garden and begin conducting community activities  Wai Lone (Jonathan) Ho remembers when he first decided to devote himself to community service. He was a transport and logistical officer in the Singapore Armed Forces, overseeing the deployment of military vehicles across the island city-state. As an officer, he coordinated the duties of servicemen, and these interactions led Ho to a realization.    “I realized that many of them were from disadvantaged backgrounds and they didn’t really get as much resources as I did growing up,” said Ho. “I saw the disparity and felt that I should be doing something.” Following his service, Ho enrolled at the UC Davis College of Biological Sciences, majoring in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology. All the while, he kept his eyes peeled for opportunities to help the community. “That’s what drew me towards volunteering at the Knights Landing One Health Center,” said Ho, who started volunteering at the center during his freshmen year.  The Knights Landing One Health Center provides healthcare services to the rural farming community of Knights Landing, Calif. There, Ho found a passion project: creating a community garden for the area’s underserved population. On October 26, the Knights Landing community garden team held their first Garden Workday. Courtesy photo “We thought that creating a community space where there was a garden, where people could come and relax, walk around, look at flowers, but also…plant anything that they want: flowers, fruits, vegetables, that that would be really amazing,” said Ho. After searching widely for possible sources of funding, Ho found the Donald A. Strauss Scholarship, which provides students with $15,000 to carry out a community service project. Ho and his team received the scholarship in 2019.  Since then, over $50,000 has been raised for the community garden project, with additional funds coming from the Donald A. Strauss Foundation, the Yolo County Health and Human Services Agency and the Blum Center for Developing Economies.    “Fundraising has been like a team project,” said Ho, who highlighted the efforts of Associate Professor of Chicana/o Studies Natalia Deeb-Sossa, Ph.D. student Jacklyn Kelty and leaders from the Knights Landing Community United Methodist Church and Empower Yolo, a nonprofit that aims to promote safe, healthy and resilient communities. Ho and his team also started a monthly cooking nutritional workshop for Knights Landing residents. Ho credited a lot of this success to the teams he’s worked with over the past three years at the Knights Landing One Health Center. He’s continuously inspired by the selflessness of the student volunteers and health professionals, many of whom dedicate much of their time to improving the lives of others. “It’s just really amazing to me how all these organizations and volunteers are so willing to provide resources for free without asking for anything in return,” he said. The garden space also played host to the Knights Landing One Health Festival in November. Courtesy photoOn October 26, the community garden team held their first Garden Workday. This “involved over 30 volunteers from the community and the AmeriCorps, where we managed to fill up garden beds with soil, create an outdoor library and paint a new mural,” said Ho. The garden space also played host to the Knights Landing One Health Festival in November. The festival connected community members to social resource organizations like CommuniCare and CalFresh.           While 2019 was fruitful, 2020 is looking to be an even bigger banner year for the community garden project. Ho and his colleagues will work with Yolo County to fully establish the garden and begin conducting community activities.   “One of my goals is to really inspire other students to take the initiative to do community service and step out of their comfort zones,” said Ho.     Stay Informed! Sign up for our monthly email newsletter In 2020, Ho and his colleagues will work with Yolo County to fully establish the garden and begin conducting community activities. Courtesy photo  "> <a class="addthis_button_facebook"></a> <a class="addthis_button_linkedin"></a> <script> var addthis_share = { templates: { twitter: "Over the past three years, undergraduate Jonathan Ho and his colleagues have raised over $50,000 for a community garden project in Knights Landing. In 2020, they&#039;ll work with Yolo County to fully establish the garden and begin conducting community activities. " } } </script> <a class="addthis_button_twitter"></a> <a class="addthis_button_email"></a> <a class="addthis_button_compact"></a> </div> <div class="clearfix text-formatted field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field__item"><aside class="wysiwyg-feature-block u-width--half u-align--right"><h3 class="wysiwyg-feature-block__title">Quick Summary</h3> <div class="wysiwyg-feature-block__body"> <ul><li><em><strong>Over the past three years, undergraduate Jonathan Ho and his colleagues have raised over $50,000 for a community garden project in Knights Landing</strong></em></li> <li><em><strong>While 2019 was fruitful, 2020 is looking to be a banner year for the Knights Landing Community Garden</strong></em></li> <li><strong><em><span><span><span><span><span><span>Ho and his colleagues will work with Yolo County to fully establish the garden and begin conducting community activities  </span></span></span></span></span></span></em></strong></li> </ul></div> </aside><p><span><span><span><span><span><span>Wai Lone (Jonathan) Ho remembers when he first decided to devote himself to community service. He </span></span></span></span></span></span><span><span><span><span><span><span>was a transport and logistical officer in the Singapore Armed Forces, overseeing the deployment of military vehicles across the island city-state. As an officer, he coordinated the duties of servicemen, and these interactions led Ho to a realization.   </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <blockquote> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>“I realized that many of them were from disadvantaged backgrounds and they didn’t really get as much resources as I did growing up,” said Ho. “I saw the disparity and felt that I should be doing something.” </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> </blockquote> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>Following his service, Ho enrolled at the UC Davis College of Biological Sciences, majoring in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology. All the while, he kept his eyes peeled for opportunities to help the community. </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>“That’s what drew me towards volunteering at the Knights Landing One Health Center,” said Ho, who started volunteering at the center during his freshmen year.  </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>The Knights Landing One Health Center provides healthcare services to the rural farming community of Knights Landing, Calif. There, Ho found a passion project: creating a community garden for the area’s underserved population.</span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <figure role="group" class="caption caption-img"><img alt="Volunteers at Knights Landing" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="eb01c43f-6dbc-4406-9789-e3752ddbb773" src="/sites/g/files/dgvnsk2646/files/inline-images/Community-Garden-College-of-Biological-Sciences-UC-Davis-4.jpg" /><figcaption>On October 26, the Knights Landing community garden team held their first Garden Workday. Courtesy photo</figcaption></figure><p><span><span><span><span><span><span> “We thought that creating a community space where there was a garden, where people could come and relax, walk around, look at flowers, but also…plant anything that they want: flowers, fruits, vegetables, that that would be really amazing,” said Ho.</span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span>After searching widely for possible sources of funding, Ho found the Donald A. Strauss Scholarship, which provides students with $15,000 to carry out a community service project. Ho and his team received the scholarship in 2019.  </span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>Since then, over $50,000 has been raised for the community garden project, with additional funds coming from the Donald A. Strauss Foundation, the Yolo County Health and Human Services Agency and the Blum Center for Developing Economies.    </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>“Fundraising has been like a team project,” said Ho, who highlighted the efforts of Associate Professor of Chicana/o Studies Natalia Deeb-Sossa, Ph.D. student Jacklyn Kelty and leaders from the Knights Landing Community United Methodist Church and Empower Yolo, a nonprofit that aims to promote safe, healthy and resilient communities. </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>Ho and his team also started a monthly cooking nutritional workshop for Knights Landing residents. </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>Ho credited a lot of this success to the teams he’s worked with over the past three years at the Knights Landing One Health Center. He’s continuously inspired by the selflessness of the student volunteers and health professionals, many of whom dedicate much of their time to improving the lives of others. “It’s just really amazing to me how all these organizations and volunteers are so willing to provide resources for free without asking for anything in return,” he said.</span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <figure role="group" class="caption caption-img align-right"><img alt="Garden Workday" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="c7c32fa6-9415-49c5-ab88-75c38ced1e23" height="236" src="/sites/g/files/dgvnsk2646/files/inline-images/Community-Garden-College-of-Biological-Sciences-UC-Davis-1_0.jpg" width="315" /><figcaption>The garden space also played host to the Knights Landing One Health Festival in November. Courtesy photo</figcaption></figure><p><span><span><span><span><span><span>On October 26, the community garden team held their first Garden Workday. </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>This “involved over 30 volunteers from the community and the AmeriCorps, where we managed to fill up garden beds with soil, create an outdoor library and paint a new mural,” said Ho. </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>The garden space also played host to the Knights Landing One Health Festival in November. The festival connected community members to social resource organizations like CommuniCare and CalFresh.          </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>While 2019 was fruitful, 2020 is looking to be an even bigger banner year for the community garden project. Ho and his colleagues will work with Yolo County to fully establish the garden and begin conducting community activities.  </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <blockquote> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>“One of my goals is to really inspire other students to take the initiative to do community service and step out of their comfort zones,” said Ho.    </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> </blockquote> <p class="text-align-center"><em><strong><a class="btn--lg btn--primary" href="http://moqichen.com/form/tell-us-more-about-yourself-2">Stay Informed! Sign up for our monthly email newsletter</a></strong></em></p> <figure role="group" class="caption caption-img"><img alt="Knights Landing Community Garden" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="6abab0ce-e986-42cb-8dcf-a638f9aab8e7" src="/sites/g/files/dgvnsk2646/files/inline-images/Community-Garden-College-of-Biological-Sciences-UC-Davis-2.jpg" /><figcaption>In 2020, Ho and his colleagues will work with Yolo County to fully establish the garden and begin conducting community activities. Courtesy photo</figcaption></figure><p> </p> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-sf-article-category field--type-entity-reference field--label-above"> <div class="field__label">Category</div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/articles/campus-community" hreflang="en">Campus and Community</a></div> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-sf-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-above"> <div class="field__label">Tags</div> <div class="field__items"> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/undergraduate-student-news" hreflang="en">Undergraduate Student News</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/community-service" hreflang="en">community service</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/biochemistry" hreflang="en">biochemistry</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/molecular-biology" hreflang="en">molecular biology</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/molecular-and-cellular-biology" hreflang="en">Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/knights-landing" hreflang="en">Knights Landing</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/global-education" hreflang="en">global education</a></div> </div> </div> Fri, 03 Jan 2020 21:37:49 +0000 Greg Watry 3796 at http://moqichen.com Biology Beyond Borders: Professor John Harada Receives Honorary Doctorate from NAIST for Decade of International Research Collaboration http://moqichen.com/news/biology-beyond-borders-professor-john-harada-receives-honorary-doctorate-naist-decade <span class="field field--name-title field--type-string field--label-hidden">Biology Beyond Borders: Professor John Harada Receives Honorary Doctorate from NAIST for Decade of International Research Collaboration </span> <span class="field field--name-uid field--type-entity-reference field--label-hidden"> <span lang="" about="/user/5451" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Greg Watry</span> </span> <span class="field field--name-created field--type-created field--label-hidden">December 16, 2019</span> <div class="field field--name-field-sf-primary-image field--type-image field--label-hidden field__item"> <img src="/sites/g/files/dgvnsk2646/files/styles/sf_landscape_16x9/public/images/article/John-Harada-Naist-College-of-Biological-Sciences-UC-Davis-4.jpg?h=4067c4be&amp;itok=qspQiOCb" width="1280" height="720" alt="John Harada" title="Last month, John Harada and others from UC Davis traveled to Japan for the NAIST Bio International Student Workshop. Glyn Noguchi" typeof="foaf:Image" class="image-style-sf-landscape-16x9" /> </div> <div class="addthis_toolbox addthis_default_style addthis_32x32_style" addthis:url="http://moqichen.com/articles.rss" addthis:title="Recent News" addthis:description="Quick Summary Professor John Harada and others from UC Davis traveled to Japan for the NAIST Bio International Student Workshop During the event, Harada was recognized with an honorary doctorate of science from NAIST Professor John Harada, Department of Plant Biology, was recently recognized by Japan’s Nara Institute of Science and Technology (NAIST) with an honorary doctorate of science. The honor comes after over a decade of fruitful collaboration between the UC Davis College of Biological Sciences and NAIST. Working together, the institutions have created an international dialogue in the sciences through an exchange program for graduate students and faculty. “I am tremendously honored to receive an Honorary Doctorate of Science from NAIST,” said Harada. “The efforts for which I was recognized reflect the contributions of many others at UC Davis, especially Professor JoAnne Engebrecht and Distinguished Professor Jim Trimmer, who are the co-organizers of the UC Davis side of the collaboration.” For Harada, the cultural and academic alliance between UC Davis and NAIST is integral to growing global collaboration in the life sciences. Glyn NoguchiLast month, Harada and others from UC Davis, including nine graduate students; Mark Winey, dean of the College of Biological Sciences; and Henry Ho, an assistant professor of cell biology and human anatomy, traveled to Japan for the NAIST Bio International Student Workshop. Students from NAIST, the Institute of Genetics and Developmental Biology Chinese Academy of Sciences (IGDB) joined the week-long workshop. Graduate student Katie Murphy, who won the 2019 UC Grad Slam, traveled to Japan for the NAIST Bio International Student Workshop. Glyn Noguchi“John has been integral to our college’s close and long-standing relationship with NAIST,” said Mark Winey, dean of the College of Biological Sciences. “He offered a wonderful lecture targeted to the students that covered both his scientific work and also how he decided on his career path. The talk was full of wisdom and advice.”    For Harada, the cultural and academic alliance between UC Davis and NAIST is integral to growing global collaboration in the life sciences. “Studies have shown that diverse groups of individuals are able to make better decisions and to generate more creative solutions to problems than more homogenous groups,” he said. “The value of obtaining experience working with people from different ethnic and cultural backgrounds is key.” Joel Rodriguez-Medina was one of the UC Davis graduate students who attended the NAIST Bio International Student Workshop. Glyn NoguchiDuring the workshop, students shared their research, listened to presentations from faculty and collaborated on short video projects covering topics related to biology. “The workshop provides students with a forum to exchange scientific information and, for the NAIST and IGDB students, to develop their English language skills,” said Harada. “UC Davis students also met with NAIST students, who will be visiting the Davis campus for a month-long research internship in January.” Last year, the College of Biological Sciences hosted 17 NAIST students for the month-long research internship.    “Our faculty have been very generous in hosting the NAIST students and welcoming them into their labs,” said Harada. Nara Institute of Science and Technology Mini-Symposium to Connect UC Davis and International Scientists On the day before their flight back to Japan, NAIST students Nhung Thi Hong Nguyen and Saranpal Singh were finishing up protein biochemistry work in UC Davis’ MOM Lab, the joint space run by Assistant Professors Kassandra Ori-McKenney and Richard McKenney. In addition to the exchange program, the two institutions organized a distance learning journal club. Harada runs the club with Professor Keiji Nakajima, of NAIST’s Graduate School of Biological Sciences. “Each week, one NAIST and one UC Davis professor jointly assign the research articles and attend the journal clubs to facilitate discussion,” said Harada, who noted that the students then discuss the research article in real-time via video. “Overall, I believe the collaboration has been very productive for all the universities and institutes involved.” As the Aggie biology community prepares to welcome the next cohort of NAIST students, the program organizers are consistently striving for new ways to improve the partnership to meet students’ needs in the “century of biology.” Stay Informed! Sign up for our monthly email newsletter Working together, the College of Biological Sciences and NAIST have created an international dialogue in the sciences through an exchange program for graduate students and faculty. Courtesy photo  "> <a class="addthis_button_facebook"></a> <a class="addthis_button_linkedin"></a> <script> var addthis_share = { templates: { twitter: "Professor John Harada, Department of Plant Biology, was recently recognized by Japan’s Nara Institute of Science and Technology (NAIST) with an honorary doctorate of science. The honor comes after over a decade of fruitful collaboration between the UC Davis College of Biological Sciences and NAIST. " } } </script> <a class="addthis_button_twitter"></a> <a class="addthis_button_email"></a> <a class="addthis_button_compact"></a> </div> <div class="clearfix text-formatted field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field__item"><aside class="wysiwyg-feature-block u-width--half u-align--right"><h3 class="wysiwyg-feature-block__title">Quick Summary</h3> <div class="wysiwyg-feature-block__body"> <ul><li><span><span><span><span><span><span><strong><em>Professor John Harada and others from UC Davis traveled to Japan for the NAIST Bio International Student Workshop</em></strong></span></span></span></span></span></span></li> <li><em><strong>During the event, Harada was recognized with an honorary doctorate of science from NAIST</strong></em></li> </ul></div> </aside><p><span><span><span><span><span><span>Professor John Harada, Department of Plant Biology, was recently recognized by Japan’s Nara Institute</span></span></span></span></span></span><span><span><span><span><span><span> of Science and Technology (NAIST) with an honorary doctorate of science. The honor comes after over a decade of fruitful collaboration between the UC Davis College of Biological Sciences and NAIST. Working together, the institutions have created an international dialogue in the sciences through an exchange program for graduate students and faculty. </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>“I am tremendously honored to receive an Honorary Doctorate of Science from NAIST,” said Harada. “The efforts for which I was recognized reflect the contributions of many others at UC Davis, especially Professor JoAnne Engebrecht and Distinguished Professor Jim Trimmer, who are the co-organizers of the UC Davis side of the collaboration.” </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <figure role="group" class="caption caption-img"><img alt="John Harada" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="59704a76-97b4-4b63-8a47-1d5983f11cc2" src="/sites/g/files/dgvnsk2646/files/inline-images/John-Harada-Naist-College-of-Biological-Sciences-UC-Davis.jpg" /><figcaption>For Harada, the cultural and academic alliance between UC Davis and NAIST is integral to growing global collaboration in the life sciences. Glyn Noguchi</figcaption></figure><p><span><span><span><span><span><span>Last month, Harada and others from UC Davis, including nine graduate students; Mark Winey, dean of the College of Biological Sciences; and Henry Ho, an assistant professor of cell biology and human anatomy, traveled to Japan for the NAIST Bio International Student Workshop. Students from NAIST, the Institute of Genetics and Developmental Biology Chinese Academy of Sciences (IGDB) joined the week-long workshop.</span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <figure role="group" class="caption caption-img align-left"><img alt="Katie Murphy" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="f5856389-ec0c-4fb0-a274-1c41b16cafb1" height="219" src="/sites/g/files/dgvnsk2646/files/inline-images/Katie-Murphy-Naist-College-of-Biological-Sciences-UC-Davis-.jpg" width="292" /><figcaption>Graduate student Katie Murphy, who won the 2019 UC Grad Slam, traveled to Japan for the NAIST Bio International Student Workshop. Glyn Noguchi</figcaption></figure><p><span><span><span><span><span><span>“</span></span></span><span><span><span>John has been integral to our college’s close and long-standing relationship with NAIST,” </span></span></span><span><span><span>said Mark Winey, dean of the College of Biological Sciences. </span></span></span><span><span><span>“He offered a wonderful lecture targeted to the students that covered both his scientific work and also how he decided on his career path. The talk was full of wisdom and advice.”</span></span></span>   </span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>For Harada, the cultural and academic alliance between UC Davis and NAIST is integral to growing global collaboration in the life sciences. </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <blockquote> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>“Studies have shown that diverse groups of individuals are able to make better decisions and to generate more creative solutions to problems than more homogenous groups,” he said. “The value of obtaining experience working with people from different ethnic and cultural backgrounds is key.”</span></span></span></span></span></span></p> </blockquote> <figure role="group" class="caption caption-img align-right"><img alt="Joel Rodriguez Medina" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="2fe9ede4-550d-47f1-a84b-17d584727f8d" height="252" src="/sites/g/files/dgvnsk2646/files/inline-images/Joel-Rodriguez-Medina-Naist-College-of-Biological-Sciences-UC-Davis-5.jpg" width="336" /><figcaption>Joel Rodriguez-Medina was one of the UC Davis graduate students who attended the NAIST Bio International Student Workshop. Glyn Noguchi</figcaption></figure><p><span><span><span><span><span><span>During the workshop, students shared their research, listened to presentations from faculty and </span></span></span></span></span></span><span><span><span><span><span><span>collaborated on short video projects covering topics related to biology.</span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>“The workshop provides students with a forum to exchange scientific information and, for the NAIST and IGDB students, to develop their English language skills,” said Harada. “UC Davis students also met with NAIST students, who will be visiting the Davis campus for a month-long research internship in January.”</span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>Last year, the College of Biological Sciences hosted 17 NAIST students for the month-long research internship.   </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>“Our faculty have been very generous in hosting the NAIST students and welcoming them into their labs,” said Harada. </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <a href="http://moqichen.com/news/nara-institute-science-and-technology-mini-symposium-connect-uc-davis-and-international" class="media-link"><div class="media-link__wrapper" data-url="http://moqichen.com/news/nara-institute-science-and-technology-mini-symposium-connect-uc-davis-and-international"> <div class="media-link__figure"><img alt="" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="7ab61de3-6a6f-4096-96cf-40a958d4ded9" src="/sites/g/files/dgvnsk2646/files/inline-images/NAIST-Students-College-of-Biological-Sciences-UC-Davis-1.jpg" /></div> <div class="media-link__body"> <h3 class="media-link__title"><span>Nara Institute of Science and Technology Mini-Symposium to Connect UC Davis and International Scientists</span></h3> <div class="media-link__content"> <p>On the day before their flight back to Japan, NAIST students Nhung Thi Hong Nguyen and Saranpal Singh were finishing up protein biochemistry work in UC Davis’ MOM Lab, the joint space run by Assistant Professors Kassandra Ori-McKenney and Richard McKenney.</p> </div> </div> </div></a> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>In addition to the exchange program, the two institutions organized a distance learning journal club. Harada runs the club with Professor Keiji Nakajima, of NAIST’s Graduate School of Biological Sciences. </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>“Each week, one NAIST and one UC Davis professor jointly assign the research articles and attend the journal clubs to facilitate discussion,” said Harada, who noted that the students then discuss the research article in real-time via video. “Overall, I believe the collaboration has been very productive for all the universities and institutes involved.” </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>As the Aggie biology community prepares to welcome the next cohort of NAIST students, the program organizers are consistently striving for new ways to improve the partnership to meet students’ needs in the “century of biology.”</span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <p class="text-align-center"><em><strong><a class="btn--lg btn--primary" href="http://moqichen.com/form/tell-us-more-about-yourself-2">Stay Informed! Sign up for our monthly email newsletter</a></strong></em></p> <figure role="group" class="caption caption-img"><img alt="Representatives from the College of Biological Sciences and NAIST" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="1d3f9117-b371-4585-9388-527e4babb0a2" src="/sites/g/files/dgvnsk2646/files/inline-images/John-Harada-Naist-College-of-Biological-Sciences-UC-Davis-3.png" /><figcaption>Working together, the College of Biological Sciences and NAIST have created an international dialogue in the sciences through an exchange program for graduate students and faculty. Courtesy photo</figcaption></figure><p> </p> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-sf-article-category field--type-entity-reference field--label-above"> <div class="field__label">Category</div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/articles/students-campus-life" hreflang="en">Awards and Recognition</a></div> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-sf-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-above"> <div class="field__label">Tags</div> <div class="field__items"> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/nara-institute-science-and-technology" hreflang="en">Nara Institute of Science and Technology</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/study-abroad" hreflang="en">study abroad</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/global-education" hreflang="en">global education</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/plant-biology-0" hreflang="en">Department of Plant Biology</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/graduate-student-news" hreflang="en">Graduate Student News</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/faculty-recognition" hreflang="en">faculty recognition</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/academic-awards" hreflang="en">academic awards</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/molecular-and-cellular-biology" hreflang="en">Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology</a></div> </div> </div> Mon, 16 Dec 2019 17:35:01 +0000 Greg Watry 3791 at http://moqichen.com Molecular Recycling Revolution: UC Davis Alumni and ambercycle Founders Talk Sustainable Fashion and Plastic Waste http://moqichen.com/news/ambercycle <span class="field field--name-title field--type-string field--label-hidden">Molecular Recycling Revolution: UC Davis Alumni and ambercycle Founders Talk Sustainable Fashion and Plastic Waste</span> <span class="field field--name-uid field--type-entity-reference field--label-hidden"> <span lang="" about="/user/5451" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Greg Watry</span> </span> <span class="field field--name-created field--type-created field--label-hidden">December 13, 2019</span> <div class="field field--name-field-sf-primary-image field--type-image field--label-hidden field__item"> <img src="/sites/g/files/dgvnsk2646/files/styles/sf_landscape_16x9/public/images/article/Shay-and-Moby-Ambercycle-College-of-Biological-Sciences-UC-Davis.png?h=219c3857&amp;itok=BxNZd-RS" width="1280" height="720" alt="Akshay Sethi and Moby Ahmed" title="UC Davis alums Akshay Sethi and Moby Ahmed are the founders of ambercycle. Courtesy photo" typeof="foaf:Image" class="image-style-sf-landscape-16x9" /> </div> <div class="addthis_toolbox addthis_default_style addthis_32x32_style" addthis:url="http://moqichen.com/articles.rss" addthis:title="Recent News" addthis:description="Quick Summary UC Davis alums Akshay Sethi, ’15 B.S. in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, and Moby Ahmed, ’15 B.S. in Genetics and Genomics, are at the forefront of a recycling revolution Their company ambercycle takes the plastics found in clothing and breaks them down into their constituent parts Through &quot;advanced molecular recycling,&quot; the company uses that material to make new yarns and clothing When Akshay Sethi and Moby Ahmed roomed together during their senior year at UC Davis, they didn’t expect their relationship to turn into a business partnership. What’s more, they didn’t expect to be at the forefront of a recycling revolution in the fashion and textile industries. “There was no plan to start a company,” said Sethi, the co-founder of ambercycle. “This just sort of happened because we thought we were working on interesting technology that could be useful to the world.”   According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, discarded clothing is the main source of textiles in municipal solid waste. In 2017, out of the 16.9 million tons of waste generated by textiles, only about 15 percent of it was recycled. The majority of waste, 11.2 million tons, ended up in landfills.    “We developed technology to take that clothing and break it down into its original, constituent materials,” said Sethi, ’15 B.S. in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology. “Once those materials are broken down, we then recover and then make new garments with that material.” With their materials company ambercycle, Sethi and Ahmed envision a fashion world without plastic waste. And people are taking notice of the entrepreneurs. Sethi and Ahmed recently made the Forbes 30 Under 30 in the manufacturing and industry category.   “We are grateful for the recognition and look forward to the journey ahead,” said ambercycle&#039;s other co-founder Ahmed, ’15 B.S. in Genetics and Genomics. Ambercycle has evolved dramatically since Sethi and Ahmed’s graduation. The company’s initial six-foot workbench has morphed into a full-fledged, venture-backed, 10,000 square-foot facility in Los Angeles. To date, the company has raised several millions in funding.      “What our technology would enable,” said Sethi, “is a world in which nothing is wasted. All of our materials will stay in their own supply chains.” The company&#039;s process takes complex mixtures found in clothing and chemically separates them into their constituent materials (specifically polyethylene terephthalate, or PET), which the company uses to create new yarns. Courtesy photoA million little fibers Plastics, like polyester and nylon, saturate our clothing. The current, industrial means to recycle those materials are “primitive and technologically repulsive,” according to Sethi and Ahmed.   “Our vision is to make all plastics climate-positive,” said Sethi. “We really believe these are materials that we should treasure and use to improve the human experience. We just have to figure out a way to consume them responsibly.” Discovering a way to do that started at UC Davis. Working with Associate Professor of Biomedical Engineering Marc Facciotti, the ambercycle team originally genetically engineered microbes to eat and recycle plastics found in clothing. On top of winning gold at the 2012 International Genetically Engineered Machine competition (which Sethi participated in), the innovative methodology won ambercycle a Global Change Award (from the H&amp;M Foundation, which is run by the owners of the H&amp;M clothing company) and $281,000 in funding in 2016. Shortly thereafter, ambercycle was awarded $1,000,000 in SBIR grants from the National Science Foundation and a contract with the US Army to recycle waste polyester at Forward Operating Bases. The amberycyle offices. Courtesy photoBut all businesses need to evolve, and in the ensuing years, the technology and company changed to better meet recycling demands. “We were using microbial technology, but upon discovering a better way to accomplish the same goals using chemistry, we’ve since moved away from it,” said Ahmed. “The biological route, the bugs kind of eat plastic really slow. They’re not as hungry as you’d want them to be.” Ahmed calls the company’s new technological process, which utilizes principles from green chemistry, “advanced molecular recycling.” The process takes complex mixtures found in clothing and chemically separates them into their constituent materials (specifically polyethylene terephthalate, or PET), which the company uses to create new yarns. “We use green chemistry to basically process this waste similar to what would happen in an oil refinery or even in certain mining applications,” said Ahmed. “Ore has multiple different stuff in it but you only want to enrich it for certain fractions and you want to separate out different components.”    With the technological changes came a move from their original space in San Francisco to the fashion hub of Los Angeles. In San Francisco, their space was a small workbench rented from another company. “It was humble roots and a lot of fun,” said Sethi. “But for anything innovative related to apparel manufacturing, LA is the best place in the world.” Their current space is an industrial facility outfitted with chemistry labs, machine shops and a pilot plant. Currently, ambercycle is in the midst of partnering with several established brands operating in a climate-positive way. They’re also designing their own line of clothing products. The company’s initial six-foot workbench has morphed into a full-fledged, venture-backed, 10,000 square-foot facility in Los Angeles. To date, the company has raised roughly several millions in funding. Courtesy photo    You construct your world, Aggie-style Sethi and Ahmed exemplify the do-it-yourself mentality characteristic of Aggies. According to the two, the mixture of high-quality education and a relaxed campus vibe allowed their creativity to flourish. They found an idea that piqued their curiosity and stuck with it. “No one really told us, ‘No’ sternly enough, so we just kind of kept doing it,” said Sethi, reflecting on the journey thus far. Asked what advice they’d give to current UC Davis students interested in entrepreneurship, the two emphasized the importance of belief in the self. “The world that we live in is constructed by people that are no smarter than you and me,” said Sethi. “Once you realize that, you can really achieve a lot.” “Anything is actually possible,” added Ahmed. “Anybody at UC Davis has the capability to do anything.” Stay Informed! Sign up for our monthly email newsletter Plastics, like polyester and nylon, saturate our clothing. The current, industrial means to recycle those materials are “primitive and technologically repulsive,” according to Sethi and Ahmed. Courtesy photo   "> <a class="addthis_button_facebook"></a> <a class="addthis_button_linkedin"></a> <script> var addthis_share = { templates: { twitter: "Aggie alums and Forbes 30 Under 30 entrepreneurs Akshay Sethi and Moby Ahmed are at the forefront of a recycling revolution in the fashion and textile industries with their company ambercycle. " } } </script> <a class="addthis_button_twitter"></a> <a class="addthis_button_email"></a> <a class="addthis_button_compact"></a> </div> <div class="clearfix text-formatted field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field__item"><aside class="wysiwyg-feature-block u-width--half u-align--right"><h3 class="wysiwyg-feature-block__title">Quick Summary</h3> <div class="wysiwyg-feature-block__body"> <ul><li><strong>UC Davis alums Akshay Sethi<span><span><span><span><span><span>, ’15 B.S. in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology,</span></span></span></span></span></span> and Moby Ahmed, <span><span><span><span><span><span>’15 B.S. in Genetics and Genomics,</span></span></span></span></span></span> are at the forefront of a recycling revolution</strong></li> <li><em><strong>Their company ambercycle takes the plastics found in clothing and breaks them down into their constituent parts</strong></em></li> <li><em><strong>Through "advanced molecular recycling," the company uses that material to make new yarns and clothing</strong></em></li> </ul></div> </aside><p><span><span><span><span><span><span>When Akshay Sethi and Moby Ahmed roomed together during their senior year at UC Davis, </span></span></span></span></span></span><span><span><span><span><span><span>they didn’t expect their relationship to turn into a business partnership. What’s more, they didn’t expect to be at the forefront of a recycling revolution in the fashion and textile industries. </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>“There was no plan to start a company,” said Sethi, the co-founder of </span></span></span><a href="http://ambercycle.com/"><span><span><span>ambercycle</span></span></span></a><span><span><span>. “This just sort of happened because we thought we were working on interesting technology that could be useful to the world.”  </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>According to the </span></span></span><a href="http://www.epa.gov/facts-and-figures-about-materials-waste-and-recycling/textiles-material-specific-data"><span><span><span>U.S. Environmental Protection Agency</span></span></span></a><span><span><span>, discarded clothing is the main source of textiles in municipal solid waste. In 2017, out of the 16.9 million tons of waste generated by textiles, only about 15 percent of it was recycled. The majority of waste, 11.2 million tons, ended up in landfills.   </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <blockquote> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>“We developed technology to take that clothing and break it down into its original, constituent materials,” said Sethi, ’15 B.S. in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology. “Once those materials are broken down, we then recover and then make new garments with that material.” </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> </blockquote> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>With their materials company ambercycle, Sethi and Ahmed envision a fashion world without plastic waste. And people are taking notice of the entrepreneurs. Sethi and Ahmed recently made the </span></span></span><a href="http://www.forbes.com/sites/amyfeldman/2019/12/03/30-under-30-manufacturing-2020-meet-the-young-entrepreneurs-building-the-future/#8182abd2229e"><em><span><span><span>Forbes</span></span></span></em><span><span><span> 30 Under 30</span></span></span></a><span><span><span> in the manufacturing and industry category.  </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>“We are grateful for the recognition and look forward to the journey ahead,” said ambercycle's other co-founder Ahmed, ’15 B.S. in Genetics and Genomics. </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>Ambercycle has evolved dramatically since Sethi and Ahmed’s graduation. The company’s initial six-foot workbench has morphed into a full-fledged, venture-backed, 10,000 square-foot facility in Los Angeles. To date, the company has raised several millions in funding.     </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>“What our technology would enable,” said Sethi, “is a world in which nothing is wasted. All of our materials will stay in their own supply chains.”</span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <figure role="group" class="caption caption-img"><img alt="CLothes" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="0815ac80-fba6-45c2-a8af-639eba2e7196" src="/sites/g/files/dgvnsk2646/files/inline-images/Amberycyle-College-of-Biological-Sciences-UC-Davis.png" /><figcaption>The company's process takes complex mixtures found in clothing and chemically separates them into their constituent materials (specifically polyethylene terephthalate, or PET), which the company uses to create new yarns. Courtesy photo</figcaption></figure><h4><span><span><span><strong><span><span><span>A million little fibers</span></span></span></strong></span></span></span></h4> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>Plastics, like polyester and nylon, saturate our clothing. The current, industrial means to recycle those materials are “primitive and technologically repulsive,” according to Sethi and Ahmed.  </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <blockquote> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>“Our vision is to make all plastics climate-positive,” said Sethi. “We really believe these are materials that we should treasure and use to improve the human experience. We just have to figure out a way to consume them responsibly.” </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> </blockquote> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>Discovering a way to do that started at UC Davis. Working with Associate Professor of Biomedical Engineering Marc Facciotti, the ambercycle team originally genetically engineered microbes to eat and recycle plastics found in clothing. On top of winning gold at the 2012 International Genetically Engineered Machine competition (which Sethi participated in), the innovative methodology won ambercycle a Global Change Award (from the H&amp;M Foundation, which is run by the owners of the H&amp;M clothing company) and $281,000 in funding in 2016. Shortly thereafter, ambercycle was awarded $1,000,000 in SBIR grants from the National Science Foundation and a contract with the US Army to recycle waste polyester at Forward Operating Bases. </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <figure role="group" class="caption caption-img align-right"><img alt="ambercycle offices" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="c97b51b1-cc17-446f-aa83-1ec3c7f56ffe" height="277" src="/sites/g/files/dgvnsk2646/files/inline-images/Amberycyle-College-of-Biological-Sciences-UC-Davis-3.png" width="370" /><figcaption>The amberycyle offices. Courtesy photo</figcaption></figure><p><span><span><span><span><span><span>But all businesses need to evolve, and in the ensuing years, the technology and company changed to better meet recycling demands. </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>“We were using microbial technology, but upon discovering a better way to accomplish the same goals using chemistry, we’ve since moved away from it,” said Ahmed. “The biological route, the bugs kind of eat plastic really slow. They’re not as hungry as you’d want them to be.” </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>Ahmed calls the company’s new technological process, which utilizes principles from green chemistry, “advanced molecular recycling.” The process takes complex mixtures found in clothing and chemically separates them into their constituent materials (specifically polyethylene terephthalate, or PET), which the company uses to create new yarns.</span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>“We use green chemistry to basically process this waste similar to what would happen in an oil refinery or even in certain mining applications,” said Ahmed. “Ore has multiple different stuff in it but you only want to enrich it for certain fractions and you want to separate out different components.”   </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>With the technological changes came a move from their original space in San Francisco to the fashion hub of Los Angeles. In San Francisco, their space was a small workbench rented from another company. </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>“It was humble roots and a lot of fun,” said Sethi. “But for anything innovative related to apparel manufacturing, LA is the best place in the world.” </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>Their current space is an industrial facility outfitted with chemistry labs, machine shops and a pilot plant. Currently, ambercycle is in the midst of partnering with several established brands operating in a climate-positive way. They’re also designing their own line of clothing products.</span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <figure role="group" class="caption caption-img"><img alt="Lab space" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="9e5da443-613f-4167-9375-246dd46f8d35" src="/sites/g/files/dgvnsk2646/files/inline-images/Amberycyle-College-of-Biological-Sciences-UC-Davis-4.png" /><figcaption>The company’s initial six-foot workbench has morphed into a full-fledged, venture-backed, 10,000 square-foot facility in Los Angeles. To date, the company has raised roughly several millions in funding. Courtesy photo    </figcaption></figure><h4><span><span><span><strong><span><span><span>You construct your world, Aggie-style</span></span></span></strong></span></span></span></h4> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>Sethi and Ahmed exemplify the do-it-yourself mentality characteristic of Aggies. According to the two, the mixture of high-quality education and a relaxed campus vibe allowed their creativity to flourish. They found an idea that piqued their curiosity and stuck with it. </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>“No one really told us, ‘No’ sternly enough, so we just kind of kept doing it,” said Sethi, reflecting on the journey thus far.</span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>Asked what advice they’d give to current UC Davis students interested in entrepreneurship, the two emphasized the importance of belief in the self. </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>“The world that we live in is constructed by people that are no smarter than you and me,” said Sethi. “Once you realize that, you can really achieve a lot.” </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <blockquote> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>“Anything is actually possible,” added Ahmed. “Anybody at UC Davis has the capability to do anything.” </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> </blockquote> <p class="text-align-center"><em><strong><a class="btn--lg btn--primary" href="http://moqichen.com/form/tell-us-more-about-yourself-2">Stay Informed! Sign up for our monthly email newsletter</a></strong></em></p> <figure role="group" class="caption caption-img"><img alt="Clothes" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="a1967944-59cf-43c5-975f-d850d3c4a144" src="/sites/g/files/dgvnsk2646/files/inline-images/Amberycyle-College-of-Biological-Sciences-UC-Davis-2.png" /><figcaption>Plastics, like polyester and nylon, saturate our clothing. The current, industrial means to recycle those materials are “primitive and technologically repulsive,” according to Sethi and Ahmed. Courtesy photo </figcaption></figure><p> </p> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-sf-article-category field--type-entity-reference field--label-above"> <div class="field__label">Category</div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/articles/ecology-environment" hreflang="en">Ecology and Environment</a></div> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-sf-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-above"> <div class="field__label">Tags</div> <div class="field__items"> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/alumni-profiles" hreflang="en">alumni profiles</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/undergraduate-student-news" hreflang="en">Undergraduate Student News</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/undergraduate-research" hreflang="en">undergraduate research</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/recycling" hreflang="en">recycling</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/pollution" hreflang="en">pollution</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/environment" hreflang="en">environment</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/entrepreneurship" hreflang="en">entrepreneurship</a></div> </div> </div> Fri, 13 Dec 2019 18:20:49 +0000 Greg Watry 3786 at http://moqichen.com Biology Year in Review: Our 10 Most Popular Stories from 2019 http://moqichen.com/news/top-10-2019 <span class="field field--name-title field--type-string field--label-hidden">Biology Year in Review: Our 10 Most Popular Stories from 2019</span> <span class="field field--name-uid field--type-entity-reference field--label-hidden"> <span lang="" about="/user/5451" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Greg Watry</span> </span> <span class="field field--name-created field--type-created field--label-hidden">December 11, 2019</span> <div class="field field--name-field-sf-primary-image field--type-image field--label-hidden field__item"> <img src="/sites/g/files/dgvnsk2646/files/styles/sf_landscape_16x9/public/images/article/BioLaunch%20Poster_0.png?h=98930abb&amp;itok=gwhGIdeZ" width="1280" height="720" alt="BioLaunch design" title="Designed by alum Gordon Ace Dan, this piece of art made its debut on a t-shirt for the BioLaunch Mentor Collective. " typeof="foaf:Image" class="image-style-sf-landscape-16x9" /> </div> <div class="addthis_toolbox addthis_default_style addthis_32x32_style" addthis:url="http://moqichen.com/articles.rss" addthis:title="Recent News" addthis:description="The new decade is right around the corner, and we&#039;re taking a look back at the top 10 performing stories from the College of Biological Sciences website. From mapping the cells of the immortal Hydra and opening the door to flood-resistant crops to finding a research lab and uncovering how a fish gets its shape, these stories exemplify the curiosity of our researchers, both faculty and students alike. Click on the box to read the story. 10.) Grains in the Rain: Study Opens the Door to Flood-Resistant Crops Of the major food crops, only rice is currently able to survive flooding. Thanks to new research, that could soon change -- good news for a world in which rains are increasing in both frequency and intensity. Professor Neelima Sinha and Associate Professor Siobhan Brady, both of the Department of Plant Biology, were members of the research team that published this study in Science.  9.) Mapping Cells in the “Immortal,” Regenerating Hydra In a study appearing in Science, Assistant Professor Celina Juliano, Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology, and her colleagues used single-cell sequencing techniques to explore the genetic trajectory for nearly 25,000 cells of the immortal Hydra. 8.) Finding a Research Lab: Undergraduate Mackenzie Noon Bridges Biology and Computer Science When he enrolled at UC Davis, student Mackenzie Noon gravitated towards genetics. Today, he&#039;s an undergraduate researcher studying cancer at the chromosomal level in the lab of Professor Ken Kaplan, Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology. 7.) How Does a Fish Get Its Shape? Students Explore Smithsonian National Fish Collection to Find Answers For the past three summers, Professor Peter Wainwright and students have journeyed to the National Museum of Natural History’s Museum Support Center to collect data from preserved specimens in the National Fish Collection. In total, they&#039;ve generated a dataset on 6,000 species and 16,000 individual specimens. 6.) Plant Biochemistry to Feed the World via the “Corn Queen” Katherine Murphy Plant biology Ph.D. student and UC Davis Grad Slam winner Katherine Murphy studies medicinal terpenes found in corn that could help bolster other crops&#039; defenses. On May 10, she competed in and won the University of California Grad Slam Finals. Find out how corn is its own doctor. 5.) Undergraduate Natascha Varona Blends Science and Art to Combat Coral Bleaching Undergraduate student Natascha Varona studies coral bleaching from a microbial angle with Professor Jonathan Eisen and Visiting Professor Raquel Peixoto. On top of research, she uses her artistic talents to raise awareness about ocean health. 4.) BioInnovation Group: Bringing Hands-On Lab Experiences to STEM Students Launched in 2014, the BioInnovation Group connects undergraduates to life sciences research through student-run, independent projects. From synthesizing “Real Vegan Cheese” to developing microfluidic devices, the group allows students to be the drivers of innovation. 3.) Using Genomics to Trace Human Family Origins with Undergraduate of the Year Cole Williams For his outstanding research and service, Cole Williams was named the 2019 College of Biological Sciences Undergraduate of the Year. At UC Davis, he joined the lab of Associate Professor Brenna Henn, studying the genetics of African hunter-gatherer and pastoralist groups 2.) How Psychedelics Could Help Treat Depression with Neuroscience Ph.D. Student Lindsay Cameron Neuroscience Ph.D. student Lindsay Cameron and other researchers at UC Davis are actively exploring drugs capable of restoring health in the brains of those with mood disorders. Some dark horse candidates are psychedelics like LSD, psilocybin and DMT. 1.) A Menagerie of Model Organisms What can a worm or fish tell us about the human body? When it comes to biology, quite a lot actually. In many cases, scientific inquiry begins with our relatives in the animal kingdom. From yeast and worms to fruit flies and mice, these creatures hold clues to the secrets of our own biology. Learn how UC Davis researchers are using animal models to answer basic biological questions that will build the foundation for revolutions in human health Stay Informed! Sign up for our monthly email newsletter "> <a class="addthis_button_facebook"></a> <a class="addthis_button_linkedin"></a> <script> var addthis_share = { templates: { twitter: "The new decade is right around the corner, and we&#039;re taking a look back at 2019&#039;s top 10 performing stories from the College of Biological Sciences website. " } } </script> <a class="addthis_button_twitter"></a> <a class="addthis_button_email"></a> <a class="addthis_button_compact"></a> </div> <div class="clearfix text-formatted field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field__item"><p>The new decade is right around the corner, and we're taking a look back at the top 10 performing stories from the College of Biological Sciences website. From mapping the cells of the immortal Hydra and opening the door to flood-resistant crops to finding a research lab and uncovering how a fish gets its shape, these stories exemplify the curiosity of our researchers, both faculty and students alike. Click on the box to read the story.</p> <a href="http://moqichen.com/news/grains-rain-study-opens-door-flood-resistant-crops" class="media-link"><div class="media-link__wrapper" data-url="http://moqichen.com/news/grains-rain-study-opens-door-flood-resistant-crops"> <div class="media-link__figure"><img alt="" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="245f3003-8f76-4893-9703-cd6374c1c93b" src="/sites/g/files/dgvnsk2646/files/inline-images/Brady%2520and%2520Sinha.png" /></div> <div class="media-link__body"> <h3 class="media-link__title"><span>10.) Grains in the Rain: Study Opens the Door to Flood-Resistant Crops</span></h3> <div class="media-link__content"> <p>Of the major food crops, only rice is currently able to survive flooding. Thanks to new research, that could soon change -- good news for a world in which rains are increasing in both frequency and intensity. Professor Neelima Sinha and Associate Professor Siobhan Brady, both of the Department of Plant Biology, were members of the research team that published this study in <em>Science.</em> </p> </div> </div> </div></a> <a href="http://moqichen.com/news/mapping-cells-immortal-regenerating-hydra" class="media-link"><div class="media-link__wrapper" data-url="http://moqichen.com/news/mapping-cells-immortal-regenerating-hydra"> <div class="media-link__figure"><img alt="" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="279554e7-cb0e-4440-ac38-465be347af5b" src="/sites/g/files/dgvnsk2646/files/inline-images/Hydra-Juliano-Lab-College-of-Biological-Sciences-UC-Davis-19_0.jpg" /></div> <div class="media-link__body"> <h3 class="media-link__title"><span>9.) Mapping Cells in the “Immortal,” Regenerating Hydra </span></h3> <div class="media-link__content"> <p>In a study appearing in <em>Science</em>, Assistant Professor Celina Juliano, Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology, and her colleagues used single-cell sequencing techniques to explore the genetic trajectory for nearly 25,000 cells of the immortal Hydra.</p> </div> </div> </div></a> <a href="http://moqichen.com/news/finding-research-lab-undergraduate-mackenzie-noon-bridges-biology-and-computer-science" class="media-link"><div class="media-link__wrapper" data-url="http://moqichen.com/news/finding-research-lab-undergraduate-mackenzie-noon-bridges-biology-and-computer-science"> <div class="media-link__figure"><img alt="" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="25e36dd8-9d70-4622-8976-e89e8580a653" src="/sites/g/files/dgvnsk2646/files/inline-images/Mackenzie-Noon-Ken-Kaplan-College-of-Biological-Sciences-UC-Davis-3_0.jpg" /></div> <div class="media-link__body"> <h3 class="media-link__title"><span>8.) Finding a Research Lab: Undergraduate Mackenzie Noon Bridges Biology and Computer Science</span></h3> <div class="media-link__content"> <p>When he enrolled at UC Davis, student Mackenzie Noon gravitated towards genetics. Today, he's an undergraduate researcher studying cancer at the chromosomal level in the lab of Professor Ken Kaplan, Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology.</p> </div> </div> </div></a> <a href="http://moqichen.com/news/how-does-fish-get-its-shape-students-explore-smithsonian-national-fish-collection-find-answers" class="media-link"><div class="media-link__wrapper" data-url="http://moqichen.com/news/how-does-fish-get-its-shape-students-explore-smithsonian-national-fish-collection-find-answers"> <div class="media-link__figure"><img alt="" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="ce954c44-4a7f-4e4f-829a-38cdbc53bc71" src="/sites/g/files/dgvnsk2646/files/inline-images/Wainwright-Lab-College-of-Biological-Sciences-UC-Davis_0_0.jpg" /></div> <div class="media-link__body"> <h3 class="media-link__title"><span>7.) How Does a Fish Get Its Shape? Students Explore Smithsonian National Fish Collection to Find Answers </span></h3> <div class="media-link__content"> <p>For the past three summers, Professor Peter Wainwright and students have journeyed to the National Museum of Natural History’s Museum Support Center to collect data from preserved specimens in the National Fish Collection. In total, they've generated a dataset on 6,000 species and 16,000 individual specimens.</p> </div> </div> </div></a> <a href="http://moqichen.com/news/plant-biochemistry-feed-world-corn-queen-katherine-murphy" class="media-link"><div class="media-link__wrapper" data-url="http://moqichen.com/news/plant-biochemistry-feed-world-corn-queen-katherine-murphy"> <div class="media-link__figure"><img alt="" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="5a614861-3a0c-4a34-a2d6-83d178829085" src="/sites/g/files/dgvnsk2646/files/inline-images/Katie-Murphy-Corn-Queen-College-of-Biological-Sciences-UC-Davis_0.jpg" /></div> <div class="media-link__body"> <h3 class="media-link__title"><span>6.) Plant Biochemistry to Feed the World via the “Corn Queen” Katherine Murphy</span></h3> <div class="media-link__content"> <p>Plant biology Ph.D. student and UC Davis Grad Slam winner Katherine Murphy studies medicinal terpenes found in corn that could help bolster other crops' defenses. On May 10, she competed in and won the University of California Grad Slam Finals. Find out how corn is its own doctor.</p> </div> </div> </div></a> <a href="http://moqichen.com/news/mixed-media-mind-undergraduate-natascha-varona-blends-science-and-art-combat-coral-bleaching" class="media-link"><div class="media-link__wrapper" data-url="http://moqichen.com/news/mixed-media-mind-undergraduate-natascha-varona-blends-science-and-art-combat-coral-bleaching"> <div class="media-link__figure"><img alt="" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="5c2df6d0-6651-4449-b818-bca4a35f215d" src="/sites/g/files/dgvnsk2646/files/inline-images/Coral-Art-Natascha-Varona-College-of-Biological-Sciences-UC-Davis_0.jpg" /></div> <div class="media-link__body"> <h3 class="media-link__title">5.) <span><span>Undergraduate Natascha Varona Blends Science and Art to Combat Coral Bleaching </span></span> </h3> <div class="media-link__content"> <p>Undergraduate student Natascha Varona studies coral bleaching from a microbial angle with Professor Jonathan Eisen and Visiting Professor Raquel Peixoto. On top of research, she uses her artistic talents to raise awareness about ocean health.</p> </div> </div> </div></a> <a href="http://moqichen.com/news/bioinnovation-group-bringing-hands-lab-experiences-stem-students" class="media-link"><div class="media-link__wrapper" data-url="http://moqichen.com/news/bioinnovation-group-bringing-hands-lab-experiences-stem-students"> <div class="media-link__figure"><img alt="" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="9aa2900b-10e5-4e38-9b48-f859f13bc3c6" src="/sites/g/files/dgvnsk2646/files/inline-images/Bio-Innovation-Lab-College-of-Biological-Sciences-UC-Davis-2.jpg" /></div> <div class="media-link__body"> <h3 class="media-link__title"><span>4.) BioInnovation Group: Bringing Hands-On Lab Experiences to STEM Students</span></h3> <div class="media-link__content"> <p>Launched in 2014, the BioInnovation Group connects undergraduates to life sciences research through student-run, independent projects. From synthesizing “Real Vegan Cheese” to developing microfluidic devices, the group allows students to be the drivers of innovation.</p> </div> </div> </div></a> <a href="http://moqichen.com/news/using-genomics-trace-human-family-origins-undergraduate-year-cole-williams" class="media-link"><div class="media-link__wrapper" data-url="http://moqichen.com/news/using-genomics-trace-human-family-origins-undergraduate-year-cole-williams"> <div class="media-link__figure"><img alt="" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="44b044da-d421-41be-8353-0e296e7278a2" src="/sites/g/files/dgvnsk2646/files/inline-images/Cole-Williams-Undergraduate-of-the-Year-College-of-Biological-Sciences-UC-Davis_0.jpg" /></div> <div class="media-link__body"> <h3 class="media-link__title"><span>3.) Using Genomics to Trace Human Family Origins with Undergraduate of the Year Cole Williams</span></h3> <div class="media-link__content"> <p>For his outstanding research and service, Cole Williams was named the 2019 College of Biological Sciences Undergraduate of the Year. At UC Davis, he joined the lab of Associate Professor Brenna Henn, studying the genetics of African hunter-gatherer and pastoralist groups</p> </div> </div> </div></a> <a href="http://moqichen.com/news/how-psychedelics-could-help-treat-depression-neuroscience-phd-student-lindsay-cameron" class="media-link"><div class="media-link__wrapper" data-url="http://moqichen.com/news/how-psychedelics-could-help-treat-depression-neuroscience-phd-student-lindsay-cameron"> <div class="media-link__figure"><img alt="" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="41664b74-d64c-4e4c-96f1-93e467ddea7d" src="/sites/g/files/dgvnsk2646/files/inline-images/Lindsay-Cameron-Neuroscience-College-of-Biological-Sciences-UC-Davis-2.jpg" /></div> <div class="media-link__body"> <h3 class="media-link__title"><span>2.) How Psychedelics Could Help Treat Depression with Neuroscience Ph.D. Student Lindsay Cameron</span></h3> <div class="media-link__content"> <p>Neuroscience Ph.D. student Lindsay Cameron and other researchers at UC Davis are actively exploring drugs capable of restoring health in the brains of those with mood disorders. Some dark horse candidates are psychedelics like LSD, psilocybin and DMT.</p> </div> </div> </div></a> <a href="http://moqichen.com/model-organisms" class="media-link"><div class="media-link__wrapper" data-url="http://moqichen.com/model-organisms"> <div class="media-link__figure"><img alt="" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="c781e0be-213d-422b-9f3a-7244a9420f2c" src="/sites/g/files/dgvnsk2646/files/inline-images/Roundworm-Model-Organism-College-of-Biological-Sciences-UC-Davis_1.png" /></div> <div class="media-link__body"> <h3 class="media-link__title"><span>1.) A Menagerie of Model Organisms</span></h3> <div class="media-link__content"> <p>What can a worm or fish tell us about the human body? When it comes to biology, quite a lot actually. In many cases, scientific inquiry begins with our relatives in the animal kingdom. From yeast and worms to fruit flies and mice, these creatures hold clues to the secrets of our own biology. Learn how UC Davis researchers are using animal models to answer basic biological questions that will build the foundation for revolutions in human health</p> </div> </div> </div></a> <p class="text-align-center"><em><strong><a class="btn--lg btn--primary" href="http://moqichen.com/form/tell-us-more-about-yourself-2">Stay Informed! Sign up for our monthly email newsletter</a></strong></em></p> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-sf-article-category field--type-entity-reference field--label-above"> <div class="field__label">Category</div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/articles/campus-community" hreflang="en">Campus and Community</a></div> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-sf-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-above"> <div class="field__label">Tags</div> <div class="field__items"> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/evolution-and-ecology" hreflang="en">Department of Evolution and Ecology</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/microbiology-and-molecular-genetics" hreflang="en">Department of Microbiology and Molecular Genetics</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/molecular-and-cellular-biology" hreflang="en">Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/neurobiology-physiology-and-behavior" hreflang="en">Department of Neurobiology, Physiology and Behavior</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/plant-biology-0" hreflang="en">Department of Plant Biology</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/undergraduate-student-news" hreflang="en">Undergraduate Student News</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/graduate-student-news" hreflang="en">Graduate Student News</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/women-stem" hreflang="en">Women in STEM</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/food" hreflang="en">food</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/climate-change" hreflang="en">climate change</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/model-organisms" hreflang="en">model organisms</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/ocean" hreflang="en">ocean</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/fish" hreflang="en">fish</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/zebrafish" hreflang="en">zebrafish</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/roundworm" hreflang="en">roundworm</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/hydra" hreflang="en">hydra</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/biochemistry" hreflang="en">biochemistry</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/neuroscience-graduate-group" hreflang="en">Neuroscience Graduate Group</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/neuroscience" hreflang="en">neuroscience</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/plant-biology-graduate-group" hreflang="en">Plant Biology Graduate Group</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/psychedelics" hreflang="en">psychedelics</a></div> </div> </div> Wed, 11 Dec 2019 19:32:30 +0000 Greg Watry 3781 at http://moqichen.com Motile Moves: College of Biological Sciences Dean Mark Winey Honored as a Fellow of the American Society for Cell Biology http://moqichen.com/news/motile-moves-college-biological-sciences-dean-mark-winey-honored-fellow-american-society-cell <span class="field field--name-title field--type-string field--label-hidden">Motile Moves: College of Biological Sciences Dean Mark Winey Honored as a Fellow of the American Society for Cell Biology </span> <span class="field field--name-uid field--type-entity-reference field--label-hidden"> <span lang="" about="/user/5451" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Greg Watry</span> </span> <span class="field field--name-created field--type-created field--label-hidden">December 09, 2019</span> <div class="field field--name-field-sf-primary-image field--type-image field--label-hidden field__item"> <img src="/sites/g/files/dgvnsk2646/files/styles/sf_landscape_16x9/public/images/article/Mark-Winey-Lab-College-of-Biological-Sciences-UC-Davis_0.jpg?h=700fb9dc&amp;itok=iV4eUyYB" width="1280" height="720" alt="Mark Winey" title="For his contributions to cell biology knowledge and the scientific community, Mark Winey was named a fellow of the American Society for Cell Biology. David Slipher/UC Davis" typeof="foaf:Image" class="image-style-sf-landscape-16x9" /> </div> <div class="addthis_toolbox addthis_default_style addthis_32x32_style" addthis:url="http://moqichen.com/articles.rss" addthis:title="Recent News" addthis:description="Quick Summary For his contributions to cell biology, Mark Winey was named a fellow of the American Society for Cell Biology Winey and his research team study centrosomes, the organelles in animal cells integral to cell division and responsible for maintaining cellular structure As dean, Winey has provided vision for the College of Biological Sciences, supporting the research ambitions of faculty, students and staff while advancing the college’s curriculum Friday is usually the day Mark Winey leaves behind the Dean’s Office for his laboratory in Briggs Hall. It’s a brief reprieve from his duties as the college’s top academic officer and a chance to get back to the science. “There’s a tradition here of deans keeping research programs” said Winey, the college’s dean and a distinguished professor in the Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology. “It keeps them connected to their research community and the scholarship in their home college.” For more than three years, Winey has provided vision for the College of Biological Sciences, supporting the research ambitions of faculty, students and staff while advancing the college’s curriculum to provide an educational experience fit for the “century of biology.” All the while, he’s maintained an active lab. For his contributions to cell biology knowledge and the scientific community, Winey was named a fellow of the American Society for Cell Biology. The ASCB cohort of fellows was formally recognized at the joint meeting with the European Molecular Biology Organization.  “It’s a real honor and a bit of a surprise to have been named as a Fellow,” said Winey. “Reading through the list of people who have been named fellows thus far, it’s a rather impressive set of people who have worked in many areas of cell biology.” A full workbench shelf from Winey&#039;s lab, where he and his team study centrosomes. David Slipher/UC DavisStaring down the centrosome barrel Winey and his research team study centrosomes, the organelles in animal cells integral to cell division (both mitosis and meiosis) and responsible for maintaining cellular structure. Each centrosome contains two barrel-shaped clusters of microtubules called centrioles, each around 200 nanometers long and organized orthogonally. During cell division, these two barrels are pulled apart, forming the centrosome basis of a new cell. ASCB President Andrew Murray, Distinguished Professor Jodi Nunnari, CBS Dean Mark Winey and ASCB CEO Erika Shugart pose for Winey&#039;s award. Courtesy photoThe process, though precise, can go awry, leading to chromosomal anomalies.  “Those types of events in mitotic cells can give rise to tumors by contributing to genetic instability,” said Winey. “In meiotic cell types, this can lead to birth defects or spontaneous miscarriages, so there’s very important functions for these structures in cells and very severe consequences when they don’t work properly.” To decipher the structural functionality of centrosomes, Winey and his lab team initially used yeast (Saccharomyces cerevisiae) as a research organism. “We’ve worked on yeast spindle pole bodies since I was a new assistant professor, so it’s been a very long time,” said Winey, reflecting on the research. “It’s what I trained on before becoming a faculty member.” Unlike animal cells, yeast cells don’t contain centrosomes per se. Instead, their centrosome-like structures are called spindle pole bodies. “It’s the only centrosome-like structure studied where we know all the parts,” said Winey. “It’s made of 18 different proteins and we understand its regulation during the cell cycle.”  Winey’s lab is part of a consortium of research groups attempting to define the molecular structure of the spindle pole body in greater detail. Still, the spindle pole body lacks some of the proteins and structures found in the centrosome of a human cell. Yeast lost these proteins and structures at some point during evolution. To get closer to the human cell and a clearer view of the spindle pole body, Winey introduced another organism to his research repertoire: a motile, single-celled eukaryote called tetrahymena. To understand the functionality of centrosomes, Winey uses model organisms like yeast and tetrahymena. David Slipher/UC DavisThe pond: a reflection pool for biology Tetrahymena dwarfs yeast. Lengthwise, it’s about 10-times larger and volume-wise, it’s hundreds of folds larger. Tetrahymena are commonly found swimming freely in freshwater ponds. “Most of the lab right now actually works on tetrahymena,” said Winey, who started studying the organism over 15 years ago. Tetrahymena is covered in hundreds of hair-like structures called cilia, which are made of the same microtubule protein material that makes up centrioles. Historically, researchers knew the surface of microtubules acted as the cell’s roadways for protein transport, but the inside of these hollow rod-like roads was more mysterious.    “It turns out there are proteins on the inside of these hollow tubes too,” said Winey. “We discovered some of those in tetrahymena.” “This was an accident,” he added. “We didn’t mean to discover them, but this is the way science goes and it led to the discovery of many candidate proteins.” These proteins are referred to as microtubule inner proteins, or MIPs. Winey and his team are now performing structural biology research on these proteins by knocking out genes in tetrahymena and seeing how it affects the development of their cilia.  Discovering Curiosity: Learning Genetics through Family Illness with Mark Winey Mark Winey, dean of the College of Biological Sciences at UC Davis, became fascinated by science at an early age. But the draw to biology—specifically, genetics—was prompted by Winey&#039;s family. Producing knowledge to support a healthy future Winey knows firsthand the necessity of investing in fundamental life sciences research and how that research changes lives. When Winey was a child, he watched as doctors scrambled to diagnose his sick infant sister. It was knowledge gleaned through foundational research that allowed doctors to eventually diagnose her with galactosemia, a rare metabolic disease. As the college’s top academic officer, Winey advocates daily for the college’s faculty, their research and, the scientists of the future, the students.       “We produce all that knowledge, which is important, but we also produce a scientifically literate workforce,” said Winey. “We are needed to produce the people who are going to take that knowledge and turn it into valuable tools or products.” Stay Informed! Sign up for our monthly email newsletter Winey’s lab is part of a consortium of research groups attempting to define the molecular structure of the spindle pole body in greater detail. David Slipher/UC Davis  "> <a class="addthis_button_facebook"></a> <a class="addthis_button_linkedin"></a> <script> var addthis_share = { templates: { twitter: "For his contributions to cell biology knowledge and the scientific community, Mark Winey was named a fellow of the American Society for Cell Biology. The ASCB cohort of fellows was formally recognized at the joint meeting with the European Molecular Biology Organization. " } } </script> <a class="addthis_button_twitter"></a> <a class="addthis_button_email"></a> <a class="addthis_button_compact"></a> </div> <div class="clearfix text-formatted field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field__item"><aside class="wysiwyg-feature-block u-width--half u-align--right"><h3 class="wysiwyg-feature-block__title">Quick Summary</h3> <div class="wysiwyg-feature-block__body"> <ul><li><strong><em><span><span><span><span><span><span>For his contributions to cell biology, Mark Winey was named a fellow of the American Society for Cell Biology</span></span></span></span></span></span></em></strong></li> <li><strong><em><span><span><span><span><span><span>Winey and his research team study centrosomes, the organelles in animal cells integral to cell division and responsible for maintaining cellular structure</span></span></span></span></span></span></em></strong></li> <li><strong><em>As dean,</em></strong><span><span><span><span><span><span><strong><em> Winey has provided vision for the College of Biological Sciences, supporting the research ambitions of faculty, students and staff while advancing the college’s curriculum</em></strong></span></span></span></span></span></span></li> </ul></div> </aside><p><span><span><span><span><span><span>Friday is usually the day Mark Winey leaves behind the Dean’s Office for his laboratory in </span></span></span></span></span></span><span><span><span><span><span><span>Briggs Hall. It’s a brief reprieve from his duties as the college’s top academic officer and a chance to get back to the science. </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>“There’s a tradition here of deans keeping research programs” said Winey, the college’s dean and a distinguished professor in the Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology. “It keeps them connected to their research community and the scholarship in their home college.” </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>For more than three years, Winey has provided vision for the College of Biological Sciences, supporting the research ambitions of faculty, students and staff while advancing the college’s curriculum to provide an educational experience fit for the “century of biology.” All the while, he’s maintained an active lab. </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>For his contributions to cell biology knowledge and the scientific community, Winey was named a fellow of the American Society for Cell Biology. The ASCB cohort of fellows was formally recognized at the joint meeting with the European Molecular Biology Organization.  </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>“It’s a real honor and a bit of a surprise to have been named as a Fellow,” said Winey. “Reading through the list of people who have been named fellows thus far, it’s a rather impressive set of people who have worked in many areas of cell biology.” </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <figure role="group" class="caption caption-img"><img alt="Workbench shelf" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="5c85c223-610f-4b7b-a881-17ac2653c9ed" src="/sites/g/files/dgvnsk2646/files/inline-images/Mark-Winey-Lab-College-of-Biological-Sciences-UC-Davis-5.jpg" /><figcaption>A full workbench shelf from Winey's lab, where he and his team study centrosomes. David Slipher/UC Davis</figcaption></figure><h4><span><span><span><strong><span><span><span>Staring down the centrosome barrel</span></span></span></strong></span></span></span></h4> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>Winey and his research team study centrosomes, the organelles in animal cells integral to cell division (both mitosis and meiosis) and responsible for maintaining cellular structure. Each centrosome contains two barrel-shaped clusters of microtubules called centrioles, each around 200 nanometers long and organized orthogonally. During cell division, these two barrels are pulled apart, forming the centrosome basis of a new cell. </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <figure role="group" class="caption caption-img align-left"><img alt="ASCB fellow ceremony" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="e2ed1199-29a8-4fca-86a4-9a5f9d52bce1" height="435" src="/sites/g/files/dgvnsk2646/files/inline-images/Mark-Winey-ASCB-Fellow-College-of-Biological-Sciences-UC-Davis.jpg" width="341" /><figcaption>ASCB President Andrew Murray, Distinguished Professor Jodi Nunnari, CBS Dean Mark Winey and ASCB CEO Erika Shugart pose for Winey's award. Courtesy photo</figcaption></figure><p><span><span><span><span><span><span>The process, though precise, can go awry, leading to chromosomal anomalies.  </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <blockquote> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>“Those types of events in mitotic cells can give rise to tumors by contributing to genetic instability,” said Winey. “In meiotic cell types, this can lead to birth defects or spontaneous miscarriages, so there’s very important functions for these structures in cells and very severe consequences when they don’t work properly.” </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> </blockquote> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>To decipher the structural functionality of centrosomes, Winey and his lab team initially used yeast (<em>Saccharomyces cerevisiae</em>) as a research organism. </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>“We’ve worked on yeast spindle pole bodies since I was a new assistant professor, so it’s been a very long time,” said Winey, reflecting on the research. “It’s what I trained on before becoming a faculty member.” </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>Unlike animal cells, yeast cells don’t contain centrosomes per se. Instead, their centrosome-like structures are called spindle pole bodies. </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>“It’s the only centrosome-like structure studied where we know all the parts,” said Winey. “It’s made of 18 different proteins and we understand its regulation during the cell cycle.”  </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>Winey’s lab is part of a consortium of research groups attempting to define the molecular structure of the spindle pole body in greater detail. Still, the spindle pole body lacks some of the proteins and structures found in the centrosome of a human cell. Yeast lost these proteins and structures at some point during evolution.</span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>To get closer to the human cell and a clearer view of the spindle pole body, Winey introduced another organism to his research repertoire: a motile, single-celled eukaryote called tetrahymena. </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <figure role="group" class="caption caption-img"><img alt="Mark Winey" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="43ab4538-cdd8-42ed-9dc9-db84d1ec856d" src="/sites/g/files/dgvnsk2646/files/inline-images/Mark-Winey-Lab-College-of-Biological-Sciences-UC-Davis-4.jpg" /><figcaption>To understand the functionality of centrosomes, Winey uses model organisms like yeast and tetrahymena. David Slipher/UC Davis</figcaption></figure><h4><span><span><span><strong><span><span><span>The pond: a reflection pool for biology</span></span></span></strong></span></span></span></h4> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>Tetrahymena dwarfs yeast. Lengthwise, it’s about 10-times larger and volume-wise, it’s hundreds of folds larger. Tetrahymena are commonly found swimming freely in freshwater ponds.</span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>“Most of the lab right now actually works on tetrahymena,” said Winey, who started studying the organism over 15 years ago. </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>Tetrahymena is covered in hundreds of hair-like structures called cilia, which are made of the same microtubule protein material that makes up centrioles. Historically, researchers knew the surface of microtubules acted as the cell’s roadways for protein transport, but the inside of these hollow rod-like roads was more mysterious.   </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>“It turns out there are proteins on the inside of these hollow tubes too,” said Winey. “We discovered some of those in tetrahymena.”</span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>“This was an accident,” he added. “We didn’t mean to discover them, but this is the way science goes and it led to the discovery of many candidate proteins.”</span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>These proteins are referred to as microtubule inner proteins, or MIPs. Winey and his team are now performing structural biology research on these proteins by knocking out genes in tetrahymena and seeing how it affects the development of their cilia.  </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <a href="http://moqichen.com/news/discovering-curiosity-learning-genetics-through-family-illness" class="media-link"><div class="media-link__wrapper" data-url="http://moqichen.com/news/discovering-curiosity-learning-genetics-through-family-illness"> <div class="media-link__figure"><img alt="" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="05ec9026-f970-4abf-8a73-9fb60e1955df" src="/sites/g/files/dgvnsk2646/files/inline-images/Winey_Lab-5.jpg" /></div> <div class="media-link__body"> <h3 class="media-link__title"><span>Discovering Curiosity: Learning Genetics through Family Illness with Mark Winey</span></h3> <div class="media-link__content"> <p>Mark Winey, dean of the College of Biological Sciences at UC Davis, became fascinated by science at an early age. But the draw to biology—specifically, genetics—was prompted by Winey's family.</p> </div> </div> </div></a> <h4><span><span><span><strong><span><span><span>Producing knowledge to support a healthy future</span></span></span></strong></span></span></span></h4> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>Winey knows firsthand the necessity of investing in fundamental life sciences research and how that research changes lives. When Winey was a child, he watched as doctors scrambled to diagnose his sick infant sister. It was knowledge gleaned through foundational research that allowed doctors to eventually diagnose her with galactosemia, a rare metabolic disease. As the college’s top academic officer, Winey advocates daily for the college’s faculty, their research and, the scientists of the future, the students.      </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <blockquote> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>“We produce all that knowledge, which is important, but we also produce a scientifically literate workforce,” said Winey. “We are needed to produce the people who are going to take that knowledge and turn it into valuable tools or products.” </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> </blockquote> <p class="text-align-center"><a class="btn--lg btn--primary" href="http://moqichen.com/form/tell-us-more-about-yourself-2">Stay Informed! Sign up for our monthly email newsletter</a></p> <figure role="group" class="caption caption-img"><img alt="WIney lab meeting" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="509421d6-79a3-48a6-8388-0e95e3306884" src="/sites/g/files/dgvnsk2646/files/inline-images/Mark-Winey-Lab-Meeting-College-of-Biological-Sciences-UC-Davis.jpg" /><figcaption>Winey’s lab is part of a consortium of research groups attempting to define the molecular structure of the spindle pole body in greater detail. David Slipher/UC Davis</figcaption></figure><p> </p> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-sf-article-category field--type-entity-reference field--label-above"> <div class="field__label">Category</div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/articles/genetics-microbiology" hreflang="en">Cellular and Microbiology</a></div> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-sf-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-above"> <div class="field__label">Tags</div> <div class="field__items"> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/molecular-and-cellular-biology" hreflang="en">Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/awards" hreflang="en">awards</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/faculty-recognition" hreflang="en">faculty recognition</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/american-society-cell-biology" hreflang="en">American Society for Cell Biology</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/centrosomes" hreflang="en">centrosomes</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/microtubules" hreflang="en">microtubules</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/yeast" hreflang="en">yeast</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/model-organisms" hreflang="en">model organisms</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/tetrahymena" hreflang="en">tetrahymena</a></div> </div> </div> Mon, 09 Dec 2019 16:24:58 +0000 Greg Watry 3771 at http://moqichen.com The Art-Science Loop: Creating Worlds with Evolution, Ecology and Biodiversity Undergraduate Megan Ma http://moqichen.com/news/art-science-loop-creating-worlds-evolution-ecology-and-biodiversity-undergraduate-megan-ma <span class="field field--name-title field--type-string field--label-hidden">The Art-Science Loop: Creating Worlds with Evolution, Ecology and Biodiversity Undergraduate Megan Ma</span> <span class="field field--name-uid field--type-entity-reference field--label-hidden"> <span lang="" about="/user/5451" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Greg Watry</span> </span> <span class="field field--name-created field--type-created field--label-hidden">December 05, 2019</span> <div class="field field--name-field-sf-primary-image field--type-image field--label-hidden field__item"> <img src="/sites/g/files/dgvnsk2646/files/styles/sf_landscape_16x9/public/images/article/Megan-Ma-College-of-Biological-Sciences-UC-Davis.jpg?h=1b913776&amp;itok=LV03jUPG" width="1280" height="720" alt="Megan Ma" title="For undergraduate student Megan Ma, art reinforces science and science reinforces art. Since enrolling at UC Davis nearly four years ago, Ma has lent her artistic talent to the Aggie community, all the while conducting research. Courtesy photo" typeof="foaf:Image" class="image-style-sf-landscape-16x9" /> </div> <div class="addthis_toolbox addthis_default_style addthis_32x32_style" addthis:url="http://moqichen.com/articles.rss" addthis:title="Recent News" addthis:description="Quick Summary Since enrolling at UC Davis nearly four years ago, undergraduate Megan Ma has lent her artistic talent to the Aggie community She’s taught scientific illustration for the Bodega Science Communication Collective, provided artwork for the BIS 2C lab manual and currently works as a graphic designer for the Center for Leadership Learning All the while, she&#039;s been taking classes and rotating through research labs across campus There are worlds inside Megan Ma’s journal. On one page, a cartoon girl teeters through a rocky field filled with tall mushrooms. On another, a study-stressed cow sits at a desk staring at a laptop marked “UCD.” And on another, droplets of blue and purple watercolors have morphed into bunny-like avatars. But there are more than imaginings in Ma’s journal. Flip through it and eventually, you’ll stumble upon sketches of millipedes in anatomical detail. There are anterior and posterior views, ventral and lateral views and even sketches of single body segments. All the drawings are labeled, with detailed notes about millipede biology written alongside them. “ I would like to think that art, like just drawing things out, is the purest form of observation,” said Ma, a student majoring in evolution, ecology and biodiversity. “Me trying to figure out how to draw something is also an opportunity for me to learn more about that organism and its structures that I’d otherwise look past.” Since enrolling at UC Davis nearly four years ago, Ma has lent her artistic talent to the Aggie community in many ways. She’s taught scientific illustration for the Bodega Science Communication Collective, provided artwork for the BIS 2C lab manual and currently works as a graphic designer for the Center for Leadership Learning, all the while taking classes and rotating through research labs, among many other activities. She even provided the illustration for this year’s holiday card from the College of Biological Sciences. “I do think I’ve come to appreciate science more because of art, and I’ve come to appreciate art more because of science,” she said. “Everything feels like it goes hand in hand.”    In the Bond Lab, Ma studies millipedes and is working with Ph.D. student Xavier Zahnle to better understand and visualize the anatomy of millipedes. Greg Watry/UC DavisMany labs, many opportunities When Ma first arrived at UC Davis, she felt alone. She was unsure of her new environment and found that meeting people outside of the classroom was easier said than done. Initially interested in marine biology, Ma reached out to the late Susan Williams, a distinguished professor of evolution and ecology, and inquired about undergraduate research opportunities. Her proactivity changed everything. Ma provided this illustration, which shows moon jellies (Aurelia aurita), for the college&#039;s holiday card. Megan MaMa was soon logging conservation data from over 500 fish species from the Coral Triangle, a highly biodiverse region in the Pacific Ocean. What’s more, she struck up friendships with her lab colleagues, including graduate students and other professors, creating a network that would lead to many opportunities throughout her undergraduate career. When Williams passed away in the spring of 2018, Ma switched to the lab of Professor Jay Stachowicz, where she started studying the marine invertebrates inhabiting seagrass beds. In both the Williams lab and the Stachowicz lab, Ma worked closely with marine ecology Ph.D. student Katie DuBois. “I learned how to identify a lot of different types of invertebrates,” said Ma, noting she was particularly fond of sea slugs but that the vast majority of critters she found were arthropods. “They’re so cute.”     An artist noticed During the summer following her freshman year, Ma took BIS 2C “Introduction to Biology: Biodiversity and the Tree of Life” with Assistant Professor of Teaching Joel Ledford, Department of Plant Biology. By that time, Ma was so busy with classes and research that art had fallen by the wayside. But things were about to change. Here we see Mopalia muscosa, or the mossy chiton. This pieces makes an appearance in the BIS 2C lab manual. Megan Ma “Some of the assignments in 2C ask students to make simple sketches of the organisms they see in labs,” said Ledford, who at the time was revamping the BIS 2C lab manual. “I happened to notice that Megan’s were amazing and she shared several others that she had done.” Ledford asked Ma to provide the remaining artwork for the new lab manual. “I am especially proud of the new lab manual and Megan’s illustrations are a big part of that,” said Ledford. “Scientific illustration,” he added, “provides a different perspective in biology, partly as a result of the interpretation done by the artist. In order to be a good illustrator, it is important to be able to ‘see like a biologist,’ so it is a specialty skill.” And Ma’s skill didn’t go unnoticed. Encouraged by graduate students and professors, she created a proposal for a scientific illustration course. Sponsored by Stachowicz, the course was offered in spring 2019 to the Bodega Science Communication Collective. Instead of Ma learning from graduate students and professors, the roles were flipped. She was now teaching them best practices for field sketches. This digital piece by Ma shows a trapdoor spider (Aptostichus stephencolberti). Megan MaTo see like a biologist Ma is drawn to textures, both in art and biology. An organism’s texture is usually the first thing she notices. Such was the case with sea slugs, and now, it’s the case with millipedes, a terrestrial arthropod Ma studies in the lab of Professor Jason Bond, Department of Entomology and Nematology. In the Bond Lab, Ma works with Xavier Zahnle, a Ph.D. student studying entomology. Together, they use 3D x-ray scans to better visualize the anatomy of millipedes.   “The goal of this project is to visualize the skeletal elements and muscles of all the major millipede groups and compare their evolution across the millipede tree of life,” said Zahnle, who referred to millipedes as “gentle and meek” creatures “but very cute!” Like Zahnle, Ma finds millipedes completely mesmerizing, especially when they walk. Their tiny legs flow like waves as they meander about. “As a scientist, Megan is very driven to satisfy her curiosity,” said Zahnle. “She’s always asking questions, and more often than not, we end up wading through the literature together to find the answer.” In the Bond Lab, Ma uses 3D x-ray scans to better visualize the anatomy of millipedes. Megan MaCurrently, Ma is mapping 3D structures of millipede reproductive organs for Zahnle’s research. She’s so fond of millipedes that she now keeps two as pets, a male named Daikon and a female named Gumball. They’re two of Ma’s many “invert pets.” She tends to a stable of isopods and a ghost mantis (Phyllocrania illudens) named Obsidian.    “I think I’ve learned to appreciate terrestrial arthropods more in general,” said Ma. “A lot of them are around us and I didn’t really pay attention to them until I had to catch them for class.”   On the cusp of graduation, Ma ponders her next steps. Her current plan is to take a gap year (during which she plans to continue working in the Bond Lab) and apply to graduate school, focusing her applications on institutions with terrestrial arthropod research programs. “There’s a lot to discover and I find that really fun,” she said. “I still hope to be doing research and maybe keep more invert pets.”     Stay Informed! Sign up for our monthly email newsletter A cartoon girl teeters through a rocky field filled with tall mushrooms in this drawing from Ma&#039;s journal. Greg Watry/UC Davis  "> <a class="addthis_button_facebook"></a> <a class="addthis_button_linkedin"></a> <script> var addthis_share = { templates: { twitter: "Since enrolling at UC Davis nearly four years ago, undergraduate Megan Ma has lent her artistic talent to the Aggie community. She’s taught scientific illustration, provided artwork for the BIS 2C lab manual and currently works as a graphic designer for the Center for Leadership Learning, all the while taking classes and rotating through research labs. " } } </script> <a class="addthis_button_twitter"></a> <a class="addthis_button_email"></a> <a class="addthis_button_compact"></a> </div> <div class="clearfix text-formatted field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field__item"><aside class="wysiwyg-feature-block u-width--half u-align--right"><h3 class="wysiwyg-feature-block__title">Quick Summary</h3> <div class="wysiwyg-feature-block__body"> <ul><li><span><span><span><span><span><span><strong><em>Since enrolling at UC Davis nearly four years ago, undergraduate Megan Ma has lent her artistic talent to the Aggie community </em></strong></span></span></span></span></span></span></li> <li><strong><em><span><span><span><span><span><span>She’s taught scientific illustration for the Bodega Science Communication Collective, provided artwork for the BIS 2C lab manual and currently works as a graphic designer for the Center for Leadership Learning </span></span></span></span></span></span></em></strong></li> <li><strong><em><span><span><span><span><span><span>All the while, she's been taking classes and rotating through research labs across campus</span></span></span></span></span></span></em></strong></li> </ul></div> </aside><p><span><span><span><span><span><span>There are worlds inside Megan Ma’s journal. On one page, a cartoon girl teeters through a rocky field </span></span></span></span></span></span><span><span><span><span><span><span>filled with tall mushrooms. On another, a study-stressed cow sits at a desk staring at a laptop marked “UCD.” And on another, droplets of blue and purple watercolors have morphed into bunny-like avatars. </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>But there are more than imaginings in Ma’s journal. Flip through it and eventually, you’ll stumble upon sketches of millipedes in anatomical detail. There are anterior and posterior views, ventral and lateral views and even sketches of single body segments. All the drawings are labeled, with detailed notes about millipede biology written alongside them. </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <blockquote> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>“</span></span></span></span></span></span> I would like to think that <span><span><span><span><span><span>art, like just drawing things out, is the purest form of observation,” said Ma, a student majoring in evolution, ecology and biodiversity. “Me trying to figure out how to draw something is also an opportunity for me to learn more about that organism and its structures that I’d otherwise look past.”</span></span></span></span></span></span></p> </blockquote> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>Since enrolling at UC Davis nearly four years ago, Ma has lent her artistic talent to the Aggie community in many ways. She’s taught scientific illustration for the Bodega Science Communication Collective, provided artwork for the BIS 2C lab manual and currently works as a graphic designer for the Center for Leadership Learning, all the while taking classes and rotating through research labs, among many other activities. She even provided the illustration for this year’s holiday card from the College of Biological Sciences.</span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>“I do think I’ve come to appreciate science more because of art, and I’ve come to appreciate art more because of science,” she said. “Everything feels like it goes hand in hand.”   </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <figure role="group" class="caption caption-img"><img alt="Millipede sketch from Ma's journal" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="8439ae55-04ca-486b-9e82-de19d7eece23" src="/sites/g/files/dgvnsk2646/files/inline-images/Journal-Megan-Ma-College-of-Biological-Sciences-UC-Davis-1.png" /><figcaption>In the Bond Lab, Ma studies millipedes and is working with Ph.D. student Xavier Zahnle to better understand and visualize the anatomy of millipedes. Greg Watry/UC Davis</figcaption></figure><h4><span><span><span><strong><span><span><span>Many labs, many opportunities</span></span></span></strong></span></span></span></h4> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>When Ma first arrived at UC Davis, she felt alone. She was unsure of her new environment and found that meeting people outside of the classroom was easier said than done. Initially interested in marine biology, Ma reached out to the late </span></span></span><a href="http://moqichen.com/people/susan-williams"><span><span><span>Susan Williams</span></span></span></a><span><span><span>, a distinguished professor of evolution and ecology, and inquired about undergraduate research opportunities. Her proactivity changed everything. </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <figure role="group" class="caption caption-img align-right"><img alt="Moon jellies" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="7309369e-fc58-49af-8fce-6b82508c4306" height="345" src="/sites/g/files/dgvnsk2646/files/inline-images/Moon-Jelly-College-of-Biological-Sciences-UC-Davis.jpg" width="259" /><figcaption>Ma provided this illustration, which shows moon jellies (Aurelia aurita), for the college's holiday card. Megan Ma</figcaption></figure><p><span><span><span><span><span><span>Ma was soon logging conservation data from over 500 fish species from the </span></span></span><a href="http://moqichen.com/news/seagrass-project-highlights-new-paradigm-marine-ecosystem-restoration"><span><span><span>Coral Triangle, a highly </span></span></span></a></span></span></span><span><span><span><a href="http://moqichen.com/news/seagrass-project-highlights-new-paradigm-marine-ecosystem-restoration"><span><span><span>biodiverse region in the Pacific Ocean</span></span></span></a><span><span><span>. What’s more, she struck up friendships with her lab colleagues, including graduate students and other professors, creating a network that would lead to many opportunities throughout her undergraduate career. When Williams passed away in the spring of 2018, Ma switched to the lab of Professor Jay Stachowicz, where she started studying the marine invertebrates inhabiting seagrass beds. In both the Williams lab and the Stachowicz lab, Ma worked closely with marine ecology Ph.D. student Katie DuBois. </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>“I learned how to identify a lot of different types of invertebrates,” said Ma, noting she was particularly fond of sea slugs but that the vast majority of critters she found were arthropods. “They’re so cute.”    </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <h4><span><span><span><strong><span><span><span>An artist noticed</span></span></span></strong></span></span></span></h4> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>During the summer following her freshman year, Ma took BIS 2C “Introduction to Biology: Biodiversity and the Tree of Life” with Assistant Professor of Teaching Joel Ledford, Department of Plant Biology. By that time, Ma was so busy with classes and research that art had fallen by the wayside. But things were about to change. </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <figure role="group" class="caption caption-img align-left"><img alt="Mossy chiton" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="ccdb8200-620d-4a95-a7ed-eff62da5fd58" height="267" src="/sites/g/files/dgvnsk2646/files/inline-images/Mossy-Chiton-College-of-Biological-Sciences-UC-Davis.jpg" width="200" /><figcaption>Here we see Mopalia muscosa, or the mossy chiton. This pieces makes an appearance in the BIS 2C lab manual. Megan Ma </figcaption></figure><p><span><span><span><span><span><span>“Some of the assignments in 2C ask students to make simple sketches of the organisms they see in labs,” said Ledford, who at the time was revamping the BIS 2C lab manual. “I happened to notice that Megan’s were amazing and she shared several others that she had done.”</span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>Ledford asked Ma to provide the remaining artwork for the new lab manual. “I am especially proud of the new lab manual and Megan’s illustrations are a big part of that,” said Ledford. </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>“Scientific illustration,” he added, “provides a different perspective in biology, partly as a result of the interpretation done by the artist. In order to be a good illustrator, it is important to be able to ‘see like a biologist,’ so it is a specialty skill.” </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>And Ma’s skill didn’t go unnoticed. Encouraged by graduate students and professors, she created a proposal for a scientific illustration course. Sponsored by Stachowicz, the course was offered in spring 2019 to the Bodega Science Communication Collective. Instead of Ma learning from graduate students and professors, the roles were flipped. She was now teaching them best practices for field sketches. </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <figure role="group" class="caption caption-img"><img alt="Spider" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="c3fc0c33-b5b3-4f67-8c1c-34e52e96135d" src="/sites/g/files/dgvnsk2646/files/inline-images/Spider-Bond-Lab-College-of-Biological-Sciences-UC-Davis.jpg" /><figcaption>This digital piece by Ma shows a trapdoor spider (Aptostichus stephencolberti). Megan Ma</figcaption></figure><h4><span><span><span><strong><span><span><span>To see like a biologist</span></span></span></strong></span></span></span></h4> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>Ma is drawn to textures, both in art and biology. An organism’s texture is usually the first thing she notices. Such was the case with sea slugs, and now, it’s the case with millipedes, a terrestrial arthropod Ma studies in the lab of Professor Jason Bond, Department of Entomology and Nematology. </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>In the Bond Lab, Ma works with Xavier Zahnle, a Ph.D. student studying entomology. Together, they use 3D x-ray scans to better visualize the anatomy of millipedes.  </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>“The goal of this project is to visualize the skeletal elements and muscles of all the major millipede groups and compare their evolution across the millipede tree of life,” said Zahnle, who referred to millipedes as “gentle and meek” creatures “but very cute!” </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>Like Zahnle, Ma finds millipedes completely mesmerizing, especially when they walk. Their tiny legs flow like waves as they meander about. </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>“As a scientist, Megan is very driven to satisfy her curiosity,” said Zahnle. “She’s always asking questions, and more often than not, we end up wading through the literature together to find the answer.” </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <figure role="group" class="caption caption-img"><img alt="Millipede segmentation" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="a111010a-b43b-4341-8474-7de5e184b761" src="/sites/g/files/dgvnsk2646/files/inline-images/Millipede-Segmentation-College-of-Biological-Sciences-UC-Davis.jpg" /><figcaption>In the Bond Lab, Ma uses 3D x-ray scans to better visualize the anatomy of millipedes. Megan Ma</figcaption></figure><p><span><span><span><span><span><span>Currently, Ma is mapping 3D structures of millipede reproductive organs for Zahnle’s research. She’s so fond of millipedes that she now keeps two as pets, a male named Daikon and a female named Gumball. They’re two of Ma’s many “invert pets.” She tends to a stable of isopods and a ghost mantis (<em>Phyllocrania illudens</em>) named Obsidian.    </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>“I think I’ve learned to appreciate terrestrial arthropods more in general,” said Ma. “A lot of them are around us and I didn’t really pay attention to them until I had to catch them for class.”  </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>On the cusp of graduation, Ma ponders her next steps. Her current plan is to take a gap year (during which she plans to continue working in the Bond Lab) and apply to graduate school, focusing her applications on institutions with terrestrial arthropod research programs.</span></span></span></span></span></span></p> <blockquote> <p><span><span><span><span><span><span>“There’s a lot to discover and I find that really fun,” she said. “I still hope to be doing research and maybe keep more invert pets.”    </span></span></span></span></span></span></p> </blockquote> <p class="text-align-center"><a class="btn--lg btn--primary" href="http://moqichen.com/form/tell-us-more-about-yourself-2">Stay Informed! Sign up for our monthly email newsletter</a></p> <figure role="group" class="caption caption-img"><img alt="Cartoon girl in field" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="56a4d343-988e-4918-9a90-b232f3598359" src="/sites/g/files/dgvnsk2646/files/inline-images/Journal-Megan-Ma-College-of-Biological-Sciences-UC-Davis-2.png" /><figcaption>A cartoon girl teeters through a rocky field filled with tall mushrooms in this drawing from Ma's journal. Greg Watry/UC Davis</figcaption></figure><p> </p> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-sf-article-category field--type-entity-reference field--label-above"> <div class="field__label">Category</div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/articles/ecology-environment" hreflang="en">Ecology and Environment</a></div> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-sf-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-above"> <div class="field__label">Tags</div> <div class="field__items"> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/evolution-and-ecology" hreflang="en">Department of Evolution and Ecology</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/undergraduate-student-news" hreflang="en">Undergraduate Student News</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/undergraduate-research" hreflang="en">undergraduate research</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/art" hreflang="en">art</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/artists" hreflang="en">artists</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/women-stem" hreflang="en">Women in STEM</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/invertebrates" hreflang="en">invertebrates</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/entomology" hreflang="en">entomology</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/millipedes" hreflang="en">millipedes</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/seagrass" hreflang="en">seagrass</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/graduate-student-news" hreflang="en">Graduate Student News</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/ecology" hreflang="en">ecology</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/biodiversity" hreflang="en">biodiversity</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/evolution" hreflang="en">evolution</a></div> </div> </div> Thu, 05 Dec 2019 16:37:42 +0000 Greg Watry 3766 at http://moqichen.com Distinguished Professor Walter Leal Elected to the National Academy of Inventors http://moqichen.com/news/distinguished-professor-walter-leal-elected-national-academy-inventors <span class="field field--name-title field--type-string field--label-hidden">Distinguished Professor Walter Leal Elected to the National Academy of Inventors</span> <span class="field field--name-uid field--type-entity-reference field--label-hidden"> <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype=""> (not verified)</span> </span> <span class="field field--name-created field--type-created field--label-hidden">December 03, 2019</span> <div class="field field--name-field-sf-primary-image field--type-image field--label-hidden field__item"> <img src="/sites/g/files/dgvnsk2646/files/styles/sf_landscape_16x9/public/images/article/Walter-Leal-College-of-Biological-Sciences-UC-Davis-2_0.jpg?h=022fe725&amp;itok=oxu8N3Dk" width="1280" height="720" alt="Walter Leal" title="Distinguished Professor Walter Leal, Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology, was recently elected to the National Academy of Inventors. David Slipher/UC Davis" typeof="foaf:Image" class="image-style-sf-landscape-16x9" /> </div> <div class="addthis_toolbox addthis_default_style addthis_32x32_style" addthis:url="http://moqichen.com/articles.rss" addthis:title="Recent News" addthis:description="The National Academy of Inventors announced today (Dec. 3) the election of 168 new fellows, including two from UC Davis: Cristina Davis, the Warren and Leta Geidt Endowed Professor and Chair, Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering; and Walter Leal, distinguished professor, Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology. Election as an NAI fellow is the highest professional distinction accorded solely to academic inventors. To date, NAI fellows hold more than 41,500 issued US patents, which have generated more than 11,000 licensed technologies and companies, and created more than 36 million jobs. Fellows’ discoveries have contributed to revenue of more than $1.6 trillion, according to the NAI. Discovering Curiosity: The Buggy Scent of Desire with Distinguished Professor Walter Leal From Brazil to Japan to Davis, Calif., Walter Leal&#039;s research path has been unique. Discover how he found his curiosity.   Leal, a former chair of the Department of Entomology (now the Department of Entomology and Nematology), is a leading global scientist in the field of insect olfaction and communication, investigating how insects detect odors, how they detect host and nonhost plant matter, and how they communicate within their species. His research, spanning three decades and producing 28 Japanese patents and two US patents, focuses on insects that carry mosquito-borne diseases as well as agricultural pests. He and his lab drew international attention with their discovery of the mode of action of DEET, the gold standard of insect repellents. He is a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and California Academy of Sciences, and a past president of the International Society of Chemical Ecology. The NAI fellows program highlights academic inventors who have demonstrated a spirit of innovation in creating or facilitating outstanding inventions that have made a tangible impact on quality of life, economic development and the welfare of society. Formal induction of the new fellows is set to take place during the academy’s ninth annual meeting, to be held in Phoenix in April. This article originally appeared on UC Davis Dateline. Stay Informed! Sign up for our monthly email newsletter "> <a class="addthis_button_facebook"></a> <a class="addthis_button_linkedin"></a> <script> var addthis_share = { templates: { twitter: "The National Academy of Inventors announced today the election of 168 new fellows, including Walter Leal, distinguished professor, Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology. " } } </script> <a class="addthis_button_twitter"></a> <a class="addthis_button_email"></a> <a class="addthis_button_compact"></a> </div> <div class="clearfix text-formatted field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field__item"><p>The National Academy of Inventors announced today (Dec. 3) the election of 168 new fellows, including two from UC Davis: <strong>Cristina Davis</strong>, the Warren and Leta Geidt Endowed Professor and Chair, Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering; and <strong>Walter Leal</strong>, distinguished professor, Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology.</p> <p>Election as an NAI fellow is the highest professional distinction accorded solely to academic inventors. To date, NAI fellows hold more than 41,500 issued US patents, which have generated more than 11,000 licensed technologies and companies, and created more than 36 million jobs. Fellows’ discoveries have contributed to revenue of more than $1.6 trillion, according to the NAI.</p> <a href="http://moqichen.com/news/discovering-curiosity-buggy-scent-desire-distinguished-professor-walter-leal" class="media-link"><div class="media-link__wrapper" data-url="http://moqichen.com/news/discovering-curiosity-buggy-scent-desire-distinguished-professor-walter-leal"> <div class="media-link__figure"><img alt="" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="9fb115fd-8858-4d50-a1cc-1cb775a79c82" src="/sites/g/files/dgvnsk2646/files/inline-images/Walter-Leal-College-of-Biological-Sciences-UC-Davis-5_0_0.jpg" /></div> <div class="media-link__body"> <h3 class="media-link__title"><span>Discovering Curiosity: The Buggy Scent of Desire with Distinguished Professor Walter Leal</span></h3> <div class="media-link__content"> <p>From Brazil to Japan to Davis, Calif., Walter Leal's research path has been unique. Discover how he found his curiosity.  </p> </div> </div> </div></a> <p>Leal, a former chair of the Department of Entomology (now the Department of Entomology and Nematology), is a leading global scientist in the field of insect olfaction and communication, investigating how insects detect odors, how they detect host and nonhost plant matter, and how they communicate within their species.</p> <p>His research, spanning three decades and producing 28 Japanese patents and two US patents, focuses on insects that carry mosquito-borne diseases as well as agricultural pests. He and his lab drew international attention with their <a href="http://www.ucdavis.edu/news/uc-davis-scientists-discover-exact-receptor-deet-repels-mosquitoes/">discovery of the mode of action of DEET</a>, the gold standard of insect repellents.</p> <p>He is a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and California Academy of Sciences, and a past president of the International Society of Chemical Ecology.</p> <p>The NAI fellows program highlights academic inventors who have demonstrated a spirit of innovation in creating or facilitating outstanding inventions that have made a tangible impact on quality of life, economic development and the welfare of society.</p> <p>Formal induction of the new fellows is set to take place during the academy’s ninth annual meeting, to be held in Phoenix in April.</p> <p><em><strong>This article originally appeared on <a href="http://www.ucdavis.edu/news/davis-and-leal-elected-inventor-fellows">UC Davis Dateline</a>. </strong></em></p> <p class="text-align-center"><a class="btn--lg btn--primary" href="http://moqichen.com/form/tell-us-more-about-yourself-2">Stay Informed! Sign up for our monthly email newsletter</a></p> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-sf-article-category field--type-entity-reference field--label-above"> <div class="field__label">Category</div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/articles/students-campus-life" hreflang="en">Awards and Recognition</a></div> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-sf-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-above"> <div class="field__label">Tags</div> <div class="field__items"> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/molecular-and-cellular-biology" hreflang="en">Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/biochemistry" hreflang="en">biochemistry</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/insects" hreflang="en">insects</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/national-academy-inventors" hreflang="en">National Academy of Inventors</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/awards" hreflang="en">awards</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/faculty-recognition" hreflang="en">faculty recognition</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/biology" hreflang="en">biology</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/entomology" hreflang="en">entomology</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/mosquitos" hreflang="en">mosquitos</a></div> </div> </div> Tue, 03 Dec 2019 23:21:19 +0000 Anonymous 3761 at http://moqichen.com Alumni and Aggie Hero Making Waves: Kristin Aquilino, &#039;11 Ph.D. in Population Biology, Discusses Saving White Abalone http://moqichen.com/news/alumni-and-aggie-hero-making-waves-kristin-aquilino-11-phd-population-biology-discusses-saving <span class="field field--name-title field--type-string field--label-hidden">Alumni and Aggie Hero Making Waves: Kristin Aquilino, &#039;11 Ph.D. in Population Biology, Discusses Saving White Abalone</span> <span class="field field--name-uid field--type-entity-reference field--label-hidden"> <span lang="" about="/user/20096" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="" content="David Slipher and Greg Watry">David Slipher and Greg Watry</span> </span> <span class="field field--name-created field--type-created field--label-hidden">November 26, 2019</span> <div class="field field--name-field-sf-primary-image field--type-image field--label-hidden field__item"> <img src="/sites/g/files/dgvnsk2646/files/styles/sf_landscape_16x9/public/images/article/Abalone-Captive-Breeding-Bodega-Marine-Lab-College-of-Biological-Sciences-UC-Davis-10_0.jpg?h=c673cd1c&amp;itok=fvW8momr" width="1280" height="720" alt="Kristin Aquilino" title="Kristin Aquilino stands next to beds holding white abalone at the Bodega Marine Laboratory. David Slipher/UC Davis" typeof="foaf:Image" class="image-style-sf-landscape-16x9" /> </div> <div class="addthis_toolbox addthis_default_style addthis_32x32_style" addthis:url="http://moqichen.com/articles.rss" addthis:title="Recent News" addthis:description="UC Davis project scientist Kristin Aquilino directs the Bodega Marine Laboratory&#039;s white abalone captive breeding program. In this video, she discusses the work she and her colleagues are doing to bring the endangered species back from the brink of extinction. Last week marked the first time BML captive-bred white abalone were released to the ocean in hopes of saving the species. Aquilino graduated from UC Davis in 2011 with a Ph.D. degree in Population Biology. In addition to her work with white abalone, Aquilino was recently named an Aggie Hero by UC Davis Leadership. Aggie Hero: Kristin Aquilino Kristin Aquilino is respected worldwide for her research at the UC Davis Bodega Marine Laboratory where she is working to rescue white abalone from the brink of extinction. While her efforts are heroic, Aquilino’s Aggie Hero award comes from her goal of “helping others in a powerful way,” according to her nomination. Aquilino explained in her own words, via a Twitter thread “on dealing with hair loss.” Stay Informed! Sign up for our monthly email newsletter "> <a class="addthis_button_facebook"></a> <a class="addthis_button_linkedin"></a> <script> var addthis_share = { templates: { twitter: "UC Davis project scientist Kristin Aquilino directs the Bodega Marine Laboratory&#039;s white abalone captive breeding program. Last week marked the first time BML captive-bred white abalone were released to the ocean in hopes of saving the species. " } } </script> <a class="addthis_button_twitter"></a> <a class="addthis_button_email"></a> <a class="addthis_button_compact"></a> </div> <div class="clearfix text-formatted field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field__item"><p>UC Davis project scientist Kristin Aquilino directs the Bodega Marine Laboratory's white abalone captive breeding program. In this video, she discusses the work she and her colleagues are doing to bring the endangered species back from the brink of extinction. Last week marked the first time BML captive-bred white abalone were released to the ocean in hopes of saving the species.</p> <div class="responsive-embed" style="padding-bottom: 56.25%"><iframe width="480" height="270" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/5_LmuBoeF_w?feature=oembed" frameborder="0" allow="accelerometer; autoplay; encrypted-media; gyroscope; picture-in-picture" allowfullscreen=""></iframe></div> <img alt="CBS video logo" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="fd934642-ccf4-49ff-914f-1c8a63771330" height="157" src="/sites/g/files/dgvnsk2646/files/inline-images/video-production-mark-college-of-biological-sciences-uc-davis_0_0_0.png" width="470" class="align-center" /><p>Aquilino graduated from UC Davis in 2011 with a Ph.D. degree in Population Biology. In addition to her work with white abalone, Aquilino was recently named an Aggie Hero by UC Davis Leadership.</p> <a href="http://leadership.ucdavis.edu/aggie-heroes/aggie-hero-kristin-aquilino" class="media-link"><div class="media-link__wrapper" data-url="http://leadership.ucdavis.edu/aggie-heroes/aggie-hero-kristin-aquilino"> <div class="media-link__figure"><img alt="" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="5f85a2d2-17c5-4f56-86b1-3a877efad142" src="/sites/g/files/dgvnsk2646/files/inline-images/Aquilino%20Before%20And%20After.jpg" /></div> <div class="media-link__body"> <h3 class="media-link__title"><span>Aggie Hero: Kristin Aquilino</span></h3> <div class="media-link__content"> <p>Kristin Aquilino is respected worldwide for her research at the UC Davis Bodega Marine Laboratory where she is working to rescue white abalone from the brink of extinction. While her efforts are heroic, Aquilino’s Aggie Hero award comes from her goal of “helping others in a powerful way,” according to her nomination. Aquilino explained in her own words, via a Twitter thread “on dealing with hair loss.”</p> </div> </div> </div></a> <p class="text-align-center"><a class="btn--lg btn--primary" href="http://moqichen.com/form/tell-us-more-about-yourself-2">Stay Informed! Sign up for our monthly email newsletter</a></p> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-sf-article-category field--type-entity-reference field--label-above"> <div class="field__label">Category</div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/articles/ecology-environment" hreflang="en">Ecology and Environment</a></div> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-sf-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-above"> <div class="field__label">Tags</div> <div class="field__items"> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/alumni-profiles" hreflang="en">alumni profiles</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/population-biology-graduate-group" hreflang="en">Population Biology Graduate Group</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/bodega-marine-lab" hreflang="en">Bodega Marine Lab</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/coastal-and-marine-sciences-institute" hreflang="en">Coastal and Marine Sciences Institute</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/women-stem" hreflang="en">Women in STEM</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/restoration" hreflang="en">restoration</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/white-abalone" hreflang="en">white abalone</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/endangered-species" hreflang="en">endangered species</a></div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/graduate-student-news" hreflang="en">Graduate Student News</a></div> </div> </div> Tue, 26 Nov 2019 16:00:10 +0000 David Slipher and Greg Watry 3756 at http://moqichen.com