The pursuit of the question, “Why?” has taken Siyuan Zhang from his native China to Notre Dame to find answers in the battle against breast cancer. “I tell my students the best of the best have curious minds,” says Zhang, the Nancy Dee Assistant Professor of Cancer Research at Notre Dame’s Mike and Josie Harper Cancer Research Institute. “The best of the best are always asking, ‘why?’
University of Notre Dame researcher Mike Ferdig is part of team of researchers who have demonstrated that so-called “humanized” mice can be an effective model to study parasites that cause malaria and resistance to malarial drugs. Their study appears in the June 1 edition of the journal Nature Methods.
Kelsey Kremers, a graduate student in the Department of Biological Sciences, has earned a NASA Earth and Space Sciences Fellowship for her proposal, “Is arctic greening consistent with the temperature sensitivity of coupled carbon and nitrogen cycles?" The fellowship is very selective—only 64 fellowships were funded out of 391 applications this year.
The top graduating seniors in the College of Science were honored at the annual Dean’s Awards Luncheon on Friday, May 15 in the Jordan Hall of Science. Gregory Crawford, William K. Warren Dean of the College of Science, presented the Dean’s Award and Dean’s Research Award and the chairs of each department recognized the top students in each of their majors. In addition, Anthony Hyder, professor of physics, was awarded the Shilts/Leonard Teaching Award.
Anna Kottkamp, an environmental science major from Wenatchee, Washington, has been named valedictorian of the 2015 University of Notre Dame graduating class and will present the valedictory address during the University Commencement Ceremony on May 17 (Sunday) at Notre Dame Stadium.
Over the past few years, extracellular vesicles, or membrane sacs secreted from cells, have emerged as important mediators by which cells communicate with their surroundings to regulate a diverse range of biological processes. In addition, specialized roles for extracellular vesicles are beginning to be recognized in various diseases including cancer, infectious diseases and neurodegenerative disorders. Moreover, engineered extracellular vesicles are likely to have applications in drug delivery.
University of Notre Dame researchers led an international team to identify a molecular mechanism responsible for making malaria parasites resistant to artemisinins, the leading class of antimalarial drugs. According to the World Health Organization’s 2014 World Malaria Report, there are an estimated 198 million cases of malaria worldwide with 3.3 billion people at risk for contracting the infection. Although the impact of malaria is still significant, the statistics reflect a considerable reduction in the global malaria burden. Since 2010, disease transmission has been reduced by 30 percent and mortality due to malaria has decreased by almost half.
The National Science Foundation (NSF) recently announced the awardees of the 2015 Graduate Research Fellowships Program (GRFP). Eight College of Science students and two alumni received awards. In addition, several students and alumni received honorable mentions. There were over 16,000 applications for this year's GRFP with 2,000 awardees nationwide. The fellowship provides three years of support for the graduate education of students who have demonstrated the potential for significant achievements in science and engineering research. Past NSF Fellows include individuals who have made significant breakthroughs in science and engineering research, as well as some who have been honored as Nobel laureates.
Insect-borne diseases — such as malaria, dengue, West Nile and the newly emerging chikungunya — infect a billion people every year; more than a million die each year and many more are disabled. The effects of climate change, according to Edwin Michael, professor of biological sciences and member of the Eck Institute for Global Health at the University of Notre Dame, mean these deadly diseases are no longer reserved for the developing world.
A new study led by Elizabeth Archie, Clare Boothe Luce Assistant Professor of Biology at the University of Notre Dame, has found that social interactions have direct effects on the gut microbiome. Archie points out that most, if not all, animals have a gut microbiome — an incredibly diverse “rainforest” of bacteria that lives in the intestine and helps animals digest food, make vitamins and fight disease. The study revealed that baboons that had closer social bonds had more similar gut bacteria than animals with weaker social ties.
Enlightened Diagnosis (EnDx), a company represented by a team of University of Notre Dame graduate students, recently earned second place in the 2015 Brown Forman Cardinal Challenge at the University of Louisville. The competition included 12 teams as finalists from university entrepreneurship programs around the world.
Greg Crawford, William K. Warren Foundation Dean of the College of Science, has been nominated as an Everyday Superhero of Biotech by the BIO International Convention. Nominees are selected for their dedication to heal, fuel, and feed the world through groundbreaking innovation in three categories: biotech/pharma, patient/patient group, and university/research institution.
Twenty-one University of Notre Dame faculty members have received Rev. Edmund P. Joyce, C.S.C., Awards for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching, and three faculty and staff have been honored with Dockweiler Awards for Excellence in Undergraduate Advising.
The Notre Dame Integrated Imaging Facility (NDIIF) is pleased to announce two awards for best imaging publications for calendar year 2013. The 2013 Best Biological Imaging Publication was awarded to Giles E. Duffield, associate professor of biological sciences. Duffield and his coworkers have pioneered the use of Positron Emission Tomography (PET) to monitor the daily rhythms of small living animals. The 2013 Best Electron Microscopy Imaging Publication 2013 was awarded to Khachatur V. Manukyan, Ph.D., a post-doctoral research associate in the Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering.
GSU and Office for Postdoctoral Scholars Research Symposium Congratulations to the following Postdocs for winning awards at the Graduate Student Union and Office for Postdoctoral Scholars 6th Annual Research Symposium! From left to right: Haitao Wang, 2nd place in Engineering; Erin Grey (Lodge lab)…
Researchers from the University of Notre Dame and the Indiana University School of Medicine have revealed a putative role for the circadian clock in the liver in the development of alcohol-induced hepatic steatosis, or fatty liver disease. Hepatic steatosis is the abnormal accumulation of fats in the cells of the liver, and is linked to disturbed control of fat metabolism. Alcohol-induced liver steatosis is produced by excessive alcohol consumption and is linked to hepatitis, or inflammation of the liver.
A new study by a team of University of Notre Dame researchers, which appears in the Sept. 2 edition of the journal PLoS ONE, is a significant step in understanding the molecular genetic and physiological basis for a spectrum of metabolic diseases related to circadian function. Obesity and diabetes have reached epidemic levels and are responsible for increased morbidity and mortality throughout the world. Furthermore, the incidence of metabolic disease is significantly elevated in shift-work personnel, revealing an important link between the circadian clock, the sleep-wake cycle, time-of-day feeding and metabolism.