Mr. Ryan Schutte, a graduate student in the O’Dowd and Smith labs, is using fruit flies to understand how seizures are generated in Dravet Syndrome, a severe childhood epilepsy. Schutte in collaboration with a postdoctoral fellow, Dr. Lei Sun, are using this new fly model as a low cost platform to screen for novel compounds to treat Dravet Syndrome and related epilepsies. Schutte’s research has earned him one of two 2012-2013 $20,000 UC Irvine/Stanley Behrens Public Impact Fellowships. Continue reading..http://www.som.uci.edu/features/feature-seizures03252013.asp
The Department congratulates Ms. Amanda Janesick, who is a graduate student in the Blumberg lab, for her Most Promising Future Faculty Member Award. Recipients were competitively selected by the Academic Senate Council on Student Experience based on nominations made by faculty and students. The award comes with a one quarter dissertation fellowship and will be presented at the 20th Annual Celebration of Teaching ceremony, Friday, April 12, 2013.
The Department congratulates Ricardo Ramirez, who is a graduate student in the Mortazavi laboratory, for winning first place in the Cellular and Molecular Biology category of the AAAS poster competition. Ricardo’s poster on the “Dynamics of open chromatin accessibility during myeloid differentiation” characterized the changes in chromatin accessibility during cell differentiation using high-throughput sequencing and the accompanying changes in DNAse-hypersensitive footprints of transcription factors differentially bound onto the DNA.
This endowed chair recognizes Dr. Lander as one of the nation’s foremost scholars in the exciting new field of systems biology. Dr. Lander founded the UCI Center for Complex Biological Systems (CCBS) in 2001 and continues to serve as the director. The center facilitates collaborative work of biologists, mathematicians, physicists, engineers, and computer scientists to obtain a more comprehensive understanding of complex biological systems. NIH recently awarded Dr. Lander and the CCBS a 5-year, $11.5 million grant to continue support of center activities. This funds both research but other programs including a nationally acclaimed residential short course in systems biology each year and community engagement projects. For more see http://www.bio.uci.edu/2013/02/lander-named-donald-bren-professor/
The Department congratulates Drs. Bruce Blumberg, Ken Cho, David Gardiner and Tom Schilling for their selection as fellows of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the world’s largest general scientific society, for their contributions to advancement of science. For more.. http://news.uci.edu/press-releases/13-from-uci-named-american-association-for-the-advancement-of-science-fellows/
Dr. Bode, Professor in Developmental and Cell Biology, and his colleagues reported in the 2009 paper that early development of Hydra, a simple fresh-water invertebrate, involves an organizer and activation of a Wnt signaling cascade. This demonstrated for the first time that signaling molecules involved in early patterning during vertebrate embryogenesis are also important in patterning of a simple invertebrate.
Dr. Monuki, Associate Professor of Developmental and Cell Biology and his graduate student Momoko Watanabe and colleagues have created a new stem cell-derived cell type with unique promise for treating neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s. They developed choroid plexus epithelial cells from existing mouse and human embryonic stem cell lines.
Read more at: http://today.uci.edu/news/2012/11/nr_monuki_121107.php
Dr. Gross, Professor in Developmental and Cell biology and his colleagues have discovered that fats within cells store a class of proteins with potent antibacterial activity, revealing a previously unknown type of immune system response that targets and kills bacterial infections. They identified this novel intracellular role of histone proteins in fruit files, and it could herald a new approach to fighting bacterial growth within cells.
Read more at http://today.uci.edu/news/2012/11/nr_gross_121113.php
Dr. O’Dowd, HHMI Professor and Chair of Development and Cell Biology, and her colleagues at UC Irvine, in collaboration with Dr. Robert Reenan’s lab at Brown University placed a gene mutation that causes human fever-induced seizures into fruit flies. In the Oct. 10 issue of The Journal of Neuroscience they report that the mutant flies display a seizure phenotype at high temperature. The drosophila knock-in model resulted in novel insights into neural mechanisms contributing to heat induced seizures and provides a rapid and low-cost platform to screen for new treatments.
See more at http://today.uci.edu/news/2012/10/nr_odowd_121017.php
Dr. Lander is the founder and director of the Center which is dedicated to systems biology research. The grant provides 5 years of support for the collaborative work of biologists, mathematicians, physicists, engineers, and computer scientists to obtain a more comprehensive understanding of complex biological systems.
Link to the news release. http://today.uci.edu/news/2012/10/nr_lander_121011.php