Baskin Receives $480,000 NSF Award

Tobias Baskin has received a new, three-year ($480,000) NSF award for a project titled "The nano-mechanics of celluose sythesis". Baskin is the Co-PI on the project, the PI is Lori Golner in Physics. The goal of the project is to use both high resolution imaging of living cells and biochemical analysis of extracts to deepen our understanding of how cellulose, perhaps the most abundant polymer on Earth, is synthesized.

Albertson Talk at Esselon Café 9/10

The Science Café kicks off its Fall series on Monday, September 10th at Esselon Café in Hadley, MA with “How to Build an Organism: a DIY Guide.” Dr. Craig Albertson from UMass will discuss some of his work exploring the design and diversification of the animal body form, proceeding from the genetic blueprint to principles of animal development. The event begins at 5:30pm, with light snacks provided and drinks available for purchase. All Science Café events are free and designed for a public audience.

The Science Café series is organized by graduate students in the Organismic and Evolutionary Biology (OEB) program at UMass. It is supported by the Society for the Study of Evolution, OEB, and the UMass Natural History Collections. We strive to bring engaging conversations about science to broad audiences by hosting Science Café events throughout the year.

For more info on the OEB program, see their website.

Bio Senior Makes Local News

The August 6, 2012 edition of the Milford Daily News featured a report on Biology major Katelyn Kalutkiewicz and the research that she is working on in the lab of Prof. Wei-lih Lee. Katelyn's work is supported by a $5,000 grant from the American Heart Association, and the news report notes that she says the Heart Association has been "very supportive of my research and promote my development as a young scientist."

To read the entire article click here

Geckskin Team on YouTube


Biology professor Duncan Irschick, along with colleagues Al Crosby from the Polymer Sciences Department, Andrew Croll and doctoral students Michael Bartlett and Daniel King have posted a video to YouTube

The video can be accessed here

Students Return from Trip to the Amazon

Cristina Cox Fernandes recently completed the pilot run of her new course, “Amazon Aquatic Ecology”. Biology students from UMass, SUNY Oswego, Hampshire College, and Mt. Holyoke College embarked on a 10 day field excursion to the Amazon, to experience and explore first hand the Amazon and Negro rivers and floodplains, in the vicinity of Manaus, Brazil. Students interacted with Brazilian scientists who gave lectures on varied topics such as Amazonian plants, fishes, birds, conservation, and the interaction of local communities with their riverine environment. Students also conducted individual projects, on topics such as fish feeding habits, river dolphins behavior, black and white water invertebrates, palm and bird diversity. 2012 has been notable for its record floodwater levels, which allowed the group to enter areas normally impassable. Students encountered many species of monkeys, snakes, spiders, fishes, and trees, especially palms. All in all it was a great inaugural run, leaving an indelible stamp in the memory of all involved!

For more photos: Click here.

For "You Tube" video: Click here.