On Monday (Jan. 25), the World Health Organization announced that Zika virus, a mosquito-borne illness that in the past year has swept quickly throughout equatorial countries, is expected to spread across the Americas and into the United States.
When it comes to fighting cancer, the enemy of our enemy could be our friend, according to a University of Notre Dame researcher. As studies continue to suggest antioxidants could actually help cancer cells grow, the research of Zachary Schafer, the Coleman Foundation Associate Professor of Cancer Biology, can help explain why.
Mark Brahier, a senior biological sciences major and international development studies minor, spent five weeks in Nicaragua this summer. Traveling with International Samaritan on his fourth trip to Central America, Brahier set out to study social, political, economic, and geographic barriers to healthcare access. “As a student studying biology and international development, this research project was a great way to show how all of my interests intersect, since it is very interdisciplinary,” Brahier said. “When I arrived in Nicaragua, I quickly realized there were more important areas of research to explore and changed the focus of my project.”
On Friday, September 11, 2015, the 7th Annual Indiana Clinical and Translational Sciences Institute (CTSI) Meeting and Watanabe Prize Lecture took place in Indianapolis. This year’s theme was “Immune and Cell-based Therapies.” The day-long, annual conference highlights advances in the clinical and translational sciences from the three partner universities, which include Indiana University, Purdue University, and the University of Notre Dame.
At the Environmental Change Initiative, Professor Jennifer Tank is conducting research to help farmers across the country make positive changes to solve this widespread challenge. As the Galla Professor of Biological Sciences, she is studying the benefits of farming techniques designed to keep nutrients like nitrogen and phosphorus on fields, where farmers need them. Her research combines the wide-scale planting of cover crops in winter with innovative drainage strategies that can reduce fertilizer runoff to streams and rivers. By working closely with farmers using these two techniques, Tank’s findings have shown that protecting freshwater does not need to come at a cost to agricultural production.
More than 1 billion people in tropical and subtropical countries are at risk for lymphatic filariasis (LF), also known as elephantiasis. The World Health Organization has set a goal to eliminate LF in vulnerable countries through mass drug administrations, an effort that has seen dramatic results. However, a new study suggests that WHO’s recommendations for elimination are not enough.
Watch video Mary Galvin, the William K. Warren Foundation Dean of the College of Science, sat down for a brief question-and-answer session about her experience, her passion for scientific research and her new role at the University of Notre Dame. When asked what drew her to Notre Dame, Galvin is quick to answer: alignment with the University’s mission, and the chance to work with students again.
Nicole Achee, research associate professor in the Department of Biological Sciences, has been appointed by the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) to participate in an ad hoc committee for the project, “Gene Drive Research in Non-Human Organisms: Recommendations for Responsible Conduct.”
The Reilly Center is delighted to announce that Gary Lamberti, professor of biological sciences and director of the Stream and Wetland Ecology Laboratory at the University of Notre Dame, has agreed to serve as the interim director of the GLOBES Program in Environment and Society for 2015-16 academic year.
In a column published in the July 30 edition of Nature magazine, David M. Lodge, the Ludmilla F., Stephen J., and Robert T. Galla Professor of Biological Sciences, said that Pope Francis has opened common ground for science and religion, especially on environmental issues. Lodge, a Protestant who has worked for 30 years at Notre Dame, is an expert on freshwater ecology, invasive species, and environmental policy. He wrote that the Pope could “help to bridge the divide between science and the Protestant views that dominate the religious ‘anti-science’ movement.”
Jessica Hellmann, associate professor and associate department chair of Biological Sciences at the University of Notre Dame, has been named the new director of the University of Minnesota’s Institute on the Environment. As director, Hellmann will work to solve grand environmental challenges, while advancing interdisciplinary research, teaching and engaging with external partners and stakeholders. Her appointment, effective August 31, includes joining the University as a Russell M. and Elizabeth M. Bennett Professor in the Department of Ecology, Evolution and Behavior.
A team of biologists from the University of Notre Dame, Rice University and three other schools has discovered that an agricultural pest that began plaguing U.S. apple growers in the 1850s likely did so after undergoing extensive and genome-wide changes in a single generation.
An accomplished scientist with extensive experience in the academic, government and private sectors, Mary E. Galvin has been appointed the William K. Warren Foundation Dean of the College of Science at the University of Notre Dame by Rev. John I. Jenkins, C.S.C., the University’s president.
University of Notre Dame faculty members continue to comment on the new encyclical Laudato Si’, issued by Pope Francis in Rome on Thursday (June 18). In an op-ed essay in Wednesday’s edition of the Chicago Tribune, Notre Dame President Rev. John I. Jenkins, C.S.C., writes that, “It is characteristic of this pope to speak as the Catholic leader but to seek to build bridges to all people who promote friendship and cooperation serving the good of all.
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.