Biology News - Spring 2011
Congratulations to the following Biology students and faculty members for receiving awards at SOURCE in May 2011:
COTS Best Poster Presentation Award:
Green Flourescent Protein Tagging of the Trypanosoma cruzi flagellum - Sarah Smith with Biology Faculty Mentor Gabrielle Stryker.
Quantitative Histological Analysis: Calcineurin's Role in the Developing Retina - Andre Dickerson, Maria Godinez with Biology Faculty Mentor Daniel Selski.
COTS Best Oral Presentation Award:
Discovering Function: Late Stage Retinal Neurodevelopment - Jesus Iniguez with Biology Faculty Mentor Daniel Selski and Audrey Huerta, Geological Sciences.
WATERS Grant Best Poster Presentaion Award:
Inquiry Based Field Research in the Seventh grade Classroom - Amber Palmeri-Miles, Brooke Wallace with Biology Faculty Mentors Holly Pinkart and Jason Irwin.
People's Choice: Best Poster Presentation Award:
Anthelmintic Activity of Plant Extracts on the Hookworm Ancylostoma ceylanicum - Sarah McNutt, Krystal McClellan and Amanda Berndt with Biology Faculty Mentor Blaise Dondji and Gil Belofsky, Chemistry.
Biology News - Winter 2011
- Biology faculty member Holly Pinkart has co-authored a paper that will be published in Environmental Microbiology titled, "Diversity of extremophilic purple phototrophic bacteria in Soap Lake, a Central Washington (USA) Soda Lake." It may be viewed at the Wiley online library.
- Biology students Joe Wilson, Neal Smith, and Amy Lentsch, 2002, graduated from dental school and are currently practicing dentistry in Yakima.
- Biology student Misty Radosevich (2003) will receive her MD from Temple University in June and begin her residency at the Mayo Clinic in anesthesiology.
- Biology faculty Blaise Dondji is a co-author of two recently published papers entitled "Geohelminth Infection in Rural Cameroonian Villages", Comparative Parasitology, 78(1):161-179. 2011; and "Prevalence of Waterborne Protozoan Parasites in Two Rural Villages in the West Province of Cameroon", Comparative Parasitology, 78(1):180-184. 2011.
Biology News - Fall 2010
Front row left to right: Sami Abdul-Wahid, Dr. Andy Piacsek, Rachel Beckstrom, Sara Healas, Amanda Berndt, John Aaron, Jesus Iniguez
Back row left to right: Dr. Jason Irwin, Audrey Huerta, Dr. Blaise Dondji, Dr. Daniel Selski.
Biology Faculty members Drs. Blaise Dondji, Daniel Selski, and Jason Irwin and their students, Amanda Berndt, Jesus Iniguez, and Sarah Healas attended the Murdock College Science Research Program 19th Regional Conference on Undergraduate Research. The conference was hosted by Linfield College in Oregon on November 12-13, 2010. In addition to Biology faculty and students, other CWU faculty also attended.
Amanda was chosen to give an oral presentation on her research with Dr. Dondji on the effects of nitric oxide on experimental hookworm infections. Jesus presented a poster on calcineurin and axon growth. Sarah presented a poster on Altitudinal variation of freeze tolerance in the Pacific Chorus Frog.
- An article published in the Daily Record October 1, 2010 quoted Biology professor Jason Irwin and graduate students Jamie Lamperth, Amber Palmeri-Miles, James Meidell and Brandon Fessler about their research on the I-90 Snoqualmie Pass project. The project involves 12 agency partners in a $1.2 billion expansion of I-90 Eastbound with $100,000 a year awarded to CWU to specifically study migration patterns. With the data derived from these migration studies, forethought will be given to migration patterns, genetic diversity, availability of resources, and reducing road kill of animals in the area. Other Biology faculty members involved in the project include Paul James, Kris Ernest, Steve Wagner and Dan Beck.
Pictured with Dr. Dondji (right) are Dr. Marcus Maurer, Universite-Charite, Berlin; Dr. Esther von Stebut, University of Mainz and Mr. Omer Ngouateu, University of Yaounde I, Cameroon.
At the invitation of the Volkswagen Foundation, Hannover, Germany, and the European Foundation Initiative for the African Research into Neglected Diseases, Dr. Blaise Dondji, Biology Faculty, attended the Grantee Meeting within the Africa Initiatives "Communicable Diseases in Sub-Saharan Africa - From the African Bench to the Field" and "Neglected Diseases". This meeting was hosted by the Bernard Nocht Institute for Tropical Medicine, Hamburg, Germany, from September 3 - 6, 2010. He co-presented a talk entitled "Epidemiological and immunological investigations on cutaneous leishmaniasis (CL) and Leishmania/HIV co-infection in the Mokolo focus, Far North Province, Cameroon".
- CWU Biology again participated in the annual "Science is Central" program. Over 300 local elementary school students received lessons on Plants from All Over the World and Reptiles. To date, over 1700 students have been offered tours from the Biology Department in 2010. Additional information about the "Science is Central" program can be found in the following Daily Record newspaper article:
Biology News - Summer 2010
- Jennifer Dechaine (Biological Sciences/Science Education) received an USDA Biotechnology Risk Assessment Grant in collaboration with University of Georgia and Luther College titled "A multigenerational assessment of the fate and impact of crop gene introgression into wild sunflower." Funding for CWU is for three years for a total of $79,169.
- Jennifer Dechaine (Biological Sciences/Science Education) had an article published in the journal Molecular Ecology titled "Ecological Patterns and Genetic Analysis of Post-dispersal Seed Predation in Sunflower (Helianthus annuus) Crop-wild Hybrids." Co-authors were Jutta Burger (Irvine Ranch Conservancy) and John Burke (University of Georgia). The article is Vol. 19, August 2010, pages 3477-3488.
- Dr. Blaise Dondji, Biology Faculty, is the lead author of a recently published paper entitled "CD4+ T Cells mediate mucosal and systemic immune responses to experimental hookworm infection" in Parasite Immunology, 2010, 40: 1-14.
|Biology graduate student Miao Gao and Biology faculty member Ian Quitadamo attended the AAAS Conference - Pacific Division AAAS (American Association for the Advancement of Science) conference in June. The theme for the meeting this year was The Art of Science. Miao received a second place in the Sectional Awards and also received the Rita W. Peterson Divisional Award for her poster titled "Using Inquiry to Foster Student Critical Thinking and Content Knowledge in Undergraduate Fundamental Biology". The Rita W. Peterson Award was established for Science Education in 2002 and is the newest of the Pacific Division's student awards. It was established through a generous donation by Rita W. Peterson, former President of the Pacific Division, to honor an outstanding student presentation in an appropriate educational field.|
Biology graduate student Miao Gao at the AAAS Conference
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Biology News - Spring 2010
Pictured with Dr. Dondji are Amanda L. Berndt and
Stephanie M. Moesch.
|Biology undergraduate students Amanda L. Berndt, |
Stephanie M. Moesch, and Sarah E. McNutt,
who work in Blaise Dondji's research lab, received
an award for Outstanding Poster Presentation at SOURCE 2010.
- Lucinda Carnell, Biology, and Carin Thomas, Chemistry, have been funded by NIH for a 3-year grant titled "High fat diet and deficient antioxidant status as contributing factors to mitochondrial dysfunction in C. elegans: implications for the onset of type 2 diabetes". Drs. Carnell and Thomas will be studying the effects of saturated and unsaturated fat diets and investigating the role of the mitochondrial protein, NNT, on mitochondrial function using the nematode C. elegans. C. elegans is an established model for examining mitochondrial function and its physiological consequences.
- Kori Ault, Biology graduate student, will be working for Oregon State University this summer in a joint project with the USGS and the Oregon Department of Forestry doing amphibian stream surveys in the Trask waterhshed. Kori recently defended her graduate research work with her presentation titled "Amphibian Saprolegniasis: a genetic comparison of water mold diversity".
- Biology faculty Blaise Dondji recently co-authored a paper with his colleagues from Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, CT. The paper entitled "Murine Visceral Leishmaniasis: IgM and polyclonal B-cell activation lead to disease exacerbation" was published in the European Journal of Immunology, 2010, 40: 1-14.
|The 2010 Dumas Lecture Series, named in honor of the late Dr. Phil Dumas who was a Biology faculty member and CWU administrator in the mid-1960's until 1989, was organized by Biology faculty member David Darda. Guest speaker for the series was Dr. David B. Wake, a distinguished evolutionary biologist from the University of California, Berkeley, who visited the CWU campus on April 19th and 20th. In his April 19th lecture, "Darwin's Species: A Modern Perspective from Studies of a Salamander Ring-species", Dr. Wake discussed his long-term studies on the ensatina salamander species complex found in Washington, Oregon, and California. These salamanders present an unusual geographic distribution that has allowed insights into the process of species formation. The Dumas Lecture was given on April 20th when Dr. Wake presented "Amphibians: Harbingers of a Sixth Extinction?" In this presentation, Dr. Wake discussed the decline in world-wide amphibian populations, a phenomenon that has prompted much herpetological research. The Dumas Lecture Series was sponsored by the CWU Department of Biological Sciences.|
Dr. Dave Darda, Dr. David Wake
and Dr. Steve Wagner.
- Robin McGinnis, who received her BA in Biology Winter 2010, has been accepted into the University of Washington School Of Dentistry. Robin is one of eight students to have been chosen for the University of Washington's RIDE (Regional Initiatives in Dental Education) program. She will spend her first year of dental school in Spokane.
- Biology graduate student Wenbin Mei has been accepted into the Ph.D. program in the Department of Biology at University of Florida. Wenbin received a four-year Graduate Fellowship and will begin his studies in mid-August.
- Biology faculty member Dave Darda has had a paper, "Observations by a university anatomy teacher and a suggestion for curricular change: integrative anatomy for undergraduates", published in the March/April 2010 issue of the journal Anatomical Sciences Education (Anat Sci Educ 3:73-76). The paper is the featured article for the issue, and Dr. Darda and his students are pictured on the journal cover.
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Biology News - Fall 2009 and Winter 2010
- Several Biology faculty members and graduate students attended the annual meeting of the Society for Northwest Vertebrate Biology in Medford, Oregon, February 22-26th. The topic this year was "Changes in Latitudes, Changes in Attitudes: The Changing Climate of Science and Policy". On Monday Biology faculty member Kris Ernest presented "Monitoring Pikas and Pika Habitat Along the I-90 Corridor East of Snoqualmie Pass, WA" during the Transportation and Wildlife Issues Symposium. At the same session, Biology graduate student Jaime Lamperth presented "An Assessment of Stream Habitat and Fish Passage Across Interstate 90 at Snoqualmie Pass, WA" and Biology graduate student Michelle Lester presented her research "Western Toad Movement Corridors: What's Hot and What's Not". On Friday, Biology graduate student Amber Palmeri-Miles presented "Field Observations of Oviposition and Development of the Coastal Tailed Frog" and also presented a poster by the same title. Biology graduate student Brandon Fessler presented his research in a poster titled "Geospatial Model of Amphibian Movement Across the I-90 Snoqualmie Pass Corridor of the Central Washington Cascades". Biology faculty member Steve Wagner was the banquet speaker with a presentation of his sabbatical work "Wild Primates and Crazy herps: Natural History and Conservation in Asia". Steve Wagner was recognized at the banquet for his commitment to SNVB and for his student mentoring, having more student presenters than any other faculty member. His award was presented by Dr. Robert Weaver, a CWU 2006 Biology graduate student and a WSU Doctor of Philosophy graduate (March 1, 2010).Michelle Lester was awarded best Master's student presentation and was also quoted in Southern Oregon's New Source Mail Tribune in their coverage of the conference.
|Amber Palmeri-Miles at SNVB 2010||Brandon Fessler at SNVB 2010|
- Ryan Scheffelmaier has been accepted into the College of Pharmacy program at Washington State University. He will begin the four year program in August. Ryan will receive a BA in Biology and a BS in Biochemistry in June, 2010.
- Biology graduate student Allison Johnson attended the annual meeting of the Society for Ecological Restoration Northwest (SERNW) held February 16th -18th. SERNW, a branch of the Society of Ecological Restoration International, is a group who sponsors a variety of research from burrowing owls in the shrub steppe to riparian restoration. Allison's most recent graduate research has been aided by a $1000.00 grant from SERNW, which was recognized at the conference with an award. At the conference of 450 attendees, Allison gave an oral presentation titled "Terrestrial and Marine Food Subsidy to Salmonids: A Stable Isotope Study in the upper Yakima River Basin". Alli also received an honorable mention for her oral presentation.
- Biology faculty member Holly Pinkart attended the 2010 Washington Association of Wine Grape Growers Annual Meeting in Kennewick, WA (Feb 3-5). The results of Dr. Pinkart's research was shared in two presentations titled "Fault Trek: The Wrath of pH" by Holly Pinkart, Anne Johansen, Sara Rybka, Celia Fiola, and Amy Mumma and "Wine Fault Ecology: Lactic Acid Bacteria" by Kyle Larson and Holly Pinkart. Congratulations to Biology undergraduate Kyle Larsonwho won 3rd place for student presentations!
- Dave Darda presented "Vertebrate Morphology in the Biology Curricula of Four-year Colleges and Comprehensive Universities: Observations, Data, and a Suggestion" at the annual meeting of the Society for Integrative and Comparative Biology held in Seattle in January.
- Owen Forsman has been accepted into the Physical Therapy program at the University of South Carolina and will begin the DPT program this fall. Owen will receive his BA in Biology in June, 2010.
|The eighteenth regional conference on undergraduate research sponsored by the M.J. Murdock Charitable Trust was held on October 30-31st at Gonzaga University in Spokane, Washington. Several CWU students participating in the Science Honors Program (SHP) presented posters on research they had conducted throughout the summer. Biology undergraduate Steve Chrisman, who works for Biology faculty memberLucinda Carnell, presented an oral presentation titled "Analysis of the electrotaxis behavior in C.elegans". The Murdock Charitable Trust provides an opportunity for undergraduate students to a conduct research projects and present their results at the annual conference, which is hosted by different Pacific Northwest colleges or universities funded by the trust. Dr Audrey Huerta, the Central Washington University SHP director, as well as some of the faculty advisors also attended the conference. The application deadline for the 2010-2011 Science Honors Program is February 16, 2010.||Dr. Lucinda Carnell and Steve Chrisman|
|Biology faculty members Blaise Dondji, Gabrielle Stryker, graduate student Evan Neumann, and undergraduate Michael Wilson attended the Rocky Mountain Conference of Parasitologists, September 10 - 12, 2009, at Heart Six Guest Ranch in Moran, Wyoming. Micheal's poster presentation was titled, "Behavioral Changes in Hamsters Infected with the Hookworm Ancylostoma ceylanicum" and Evan's oral presentation was titled, "Identifying the Subcellular Location of the PFR5 and PFR6 Proteins".|
- Biological Sciences Professor Steve Wagner recently co-authored a paper with international colleagues entitled "Molecular phylogeny and genetic identification of populations of two species of Feirana Frogs (Amphibia: Anura, Ranidae, Dicroglossinae, Paini) Endemic to China" published in ZOOLOGICAL SCIENCE 26: 500-509 (2009). This work resulted from Dr. Wagner's invitation to conduct research with Herpetologists at the Chinese Academy of Sciences in Chengdu.
- Biological Sciences graduate student Jack Lester and Biology Professor Steve Wagner recently co-authored a paper with CWU Anthropology (Lori Sheeran) and Psychology (Maureen McCarthy, Megan Matheson) colleagues entitled "Sequences of Tibetan Macaque (Macaca thibetana) and Tourist Behaviors at Mt. Huangshan, China" published in PRIMATE CONSERVATION 2009 vol. 24 (available online). Field work for this paper was conducted during the CWU International Biodiversity and Conservation Field School in Huangshan China.
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Biology News - Summer 2009
Left to right: Steve Chrisman, Eric Foss, Dr. Martin Chalfie, and Dr. Lucinda Carnell
|In June 2009, Biology faculty member Lucinda Carnell, graduate student Eric Foss and undergraduate Steve Chrisman presented their research at the International C. elegans Meetings in Los Angeles, California. Dr. Carnell's poster presentation was titled, "Killing two birds with one stone: Getting your undergraduate class to map your mutants", Eric's poster presentation was titled, "Effects of serotonin on locomotory behavior in the roundworm, C. elegans", and Steve's poster presentation was titled, "Analysis of electrotaxis behavior in C. elegans". While at the conference, Dr. Carnell and her students had the opportunity to meet with her former advisor, Dr. Martin Chalfie, co-recipient of the 2008 Nobel Prize in Chemistry.|
- Evolution 2009 (annual meeting of three national scientific societies) was held June 12-16, 2009 in Moscow, Idaho. Lixing Sun, Rhiannon Peery, and Tim Chumley presented research posters at the conference. Linda Raubeson and Wenbin Mei also attended and were poster co-authors.
- Botany and Mycology 2009 (annual meeting of five national scientific societies) was held July 25-29, 2009 in Snowbird, Utah. This conference was attended byLinda Raubeson, Jim Johnson, Susan Brady, Helen Lau, and Kori Ault.
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Biology News - Spring 2009
- Dave Darda attended the American Association of Antatomists' annual meeting in New Orleans, LA, April 18-22. He attended workshops and presentations concerning anatomy curriculum and education, and presented a poster titled, "Observations by a middle-aged university anatomy teacher and a suggestion for curricular change".
- Congratulations to the many students who participated in SOURCE 2009. Biology students receiving awards for Outstanding Oral Presentations were:Allison Johnson (Mentor: Paul James) for "Terrestrial and Marine Food Subsidy to Salmonid Diet: A Stable Isotope Study on the Yakima River"; April Barreca(Mentor: Jason Irwin) for "Frogs in Spring All Winter: Overwintering of Cascades Frogs in Washington state"; and Eric Foss (Mentor: Lucinda Carnell) for "Effects of Serotonin on Locomotory Behavior in the Roundworm, C. elegans." Biology students receiving awards for Outstanding Poster Presentationswere: Stefanie Buxel-Florenzen (Mentor: Lixing Sun) for "Sexual Dimorphism of Recombination Rates as a Consequence of Sexual Conflict"; Joanna Galindo, Gracie Galindo (Mentors: Jason Irwin, Lucinda Carnell) for "The Effects of Temperature on Metabolic Rate, Venon Sythesis, and Potency inPeucetia viridans (Araneae: Oxyopidae)"; and Brandon Sudduth (Mentor: Lucinda Carnell) for "Ser-7, A Serotonin Receptor, is Involved in Withdrawal Effects from Long-Term Exposure to Serotonin in the Roundworm, C. elegans."
SOURCE 2009 Awards (pictured left to right): Jason Irwin (accepting for Joanna Galindo), Allison Johnson, April Barreca, and Eric Foss.
- Biology graduate student Kori Ault has received a $3,000.00 tuition scholarship for 2009-2010 from the Washington State Society, Daughters of the American Revolution's Weber-Riemcke-Schreiner Scholarship fund. This scholarship is available to any graduate student at a state school in Washington and is awarded based on merit and need. Kori is also the recipient of a CWU summer research grant.
- Jamie Lamperth, Biology graduate student working with faculty mentor Paul James, was the recipient of the Dick Thomas Memorial Student Competition Award. Jamie's thesis research is investigating bull trout habitat use at various scales in the Yakima River basin, including habitat factors that influence spawning site selection. Jamie was one of five students, selected from applicants throughout Washington State, competing for the award at the 2009 GIS Conference in Bellevue on May 6th. Three judges scored the oral presentations based on several geospatial and technology criterion. Jamie's presentation, "Are bull trout present in Cowiche Creek, WA? A spatial model predicting suitable habitat", placed third in the competition. In addition to a monetary award, each student was invited to the Washington State Chapter of the Urban and Regional Information Systems Association (WAURISA). Jamie was nominated for this competition by Dr. Nancy Hultquist for his superior work on a Geography 404 (Intermediate GIS) project last winter.
- Biology undergraduate Erich Wessel has been accepted to Kansas City University of Medicine and Biosciences in Kansas City, Missouri. He will begin the program in fall, 2009.
- Biology Adjunct Professor Gabi Jackson and co-authors R. Zingmark and A. Lewitus have had their paper titled "Modeling Epiphytic Community Production" accepted for publication in the Journal of Marine Ecology Progress Series.
- Lixing Sun (Biology), Wenbin Mei (Biology graduate student), Dongbo Xia (Biology graduate student), Razvan Andonie, and Yvonne Chueh have submitted a paper to the Proceedings of Royal Society London for publication titled, "The long-term evolutionary consequence of the Trivers-Willard Effect: No simple effect in finite populations".
- Josh Kirk, (BS - Biology, 2008), has been accepted to the SUNY School of Dental Medicine (Buffalo) and will start next term.
- Paul James, Dan Beck, James Lamperth, April Barreca and Michelle Lester participated in Shrub Steppe Day 2009 in May. At the WATERS station, April, Brittany Best (Chemistry), Clay Larkins (Geology), Caitlin Orem (Geology) and Amanda Ketsdever (Natural Resources) used field scopes to look at plankton and showed kids how to make paper watershed models. Participants also created streams in the sand using Dr. Karl Lillquist's (Geology) stream tables. James Lamperth assisted Paul James in talking about and finding macro-invertebrates and fish at Umtanum Creek. Members of the Biology Club, with advisor Gabe Stryker, participated in the event with a bake sale. All donations made at the bake sale will be used for club activities.
- Blaise Dondji, Biology, and his German collaborators, Marcus Maurer, Department of Dermatology and Allergy, Université Charité, Berlin and Esther von Stebut, Department of Dermatology, Johannes Gutenberg University, Mainz, are co-authors of a review entitled "What determines the success or failure of intracellular cutaneous parasites? Lessons learned from leishmaniasis" published in Medical Microbiology and Immunology (pdf), April 25, 2009.
|Biology Pre-Vet Club members attended Discover Veterinary Medicine at WSU on April 3rd. This was an all day event for students intending to enter the DVM program. According to Pre-Vet Club President Heidi Anderson, the group met with the adcom committee, professors, and current students. They also attended workshops and sat in on a class in progress. On April 4th they helped the Canine Club at WSU with their annual Canine Canter 5K run and then attended an Open House at the Vet teaching hospital.|
|Biology Pre-Vet Club members attended Swannack Ranch Day in Lamont, Washington, on April 19th. The club was invited to spend the day learning about commercial animal farm management and large scale animal production with Dr. Jill Swannack. Club members participated in delivering lambs, bottle feeding bummers and learned about flock management and care. One of their professional advisors, Dr. Dawn Evert, accompanied them.|
- Biology faculty member Paul James and Biology graduate students Allison Johnson and Jamie Lamperth attended the Annual Meeting of the Washington-British Columbia Chapter of the American Fisheries Society held in Shelton, Washington in mid-April.
- Biology graduate students Michelle Lester and April Barreca and Biology undergraduate Aaron Gilbertson represented CWU by volunteering at the 10th annual Arborfest celebration at the Yakima Arboretum on April 11, 2009. The main theme for the Arborfest celebration was "A walk in the woods" and for the biology station it was "Things that slither and hop through the woods". Participants in the event learned about species identification, natural history, benefits of pest control and conservation of habitat to protect amphibians and reptiles. Michelle, April and Aaron took four species of frogs (tree frogs, bullfrog, leopard frog and Columbia spotted frog) in addition to some native species including a gopher snake, garter snake, Pacific rattlesnake and short-horned lizards to share with the participants. They also had fun sharing ball pythons, a boa constrictor and an African thigh-spurred tortoise.
- Biology/Geography Research Associate and Lecturer Clay Arango recently had a co-authored paper highlighted in Science Daily. The paper "The effects of season and agriculture on nitrous oxide production in headwater streams" drew upon research conducted during his PhD program at Notre Dame, where he investigated how land use influences stream nitrogen transformations. Dr. Jake Beaulieu, the lead author, and Dr. Arango found that agricultural drains in a row crop dominated landscape were often sources of nitrous oxide, a potent greenhouse gas, and that nitrous oxide production was related to nitrate concentrations, which varied seasonally based on hydrology.
- Biology undergraduate Chris Gaulke has been accepted to the University of California at Davis in their microbiology graduate group. He will start the PhD program in the fall of 2009.
- Biology undergraduate Elizabeth Nikolaeva has been accepted to Dental School at the University of Washington. She will begin her four year program with 53 classmates in September 2009.
- Biology professors Dan Beck and Kris Ernest spent three months at the Chamela Biological Station in the tropical dry forests of coastal western Mexico as part of their sabbatical year. Dr. Beck conducted field work on lizard-habitat relationships in tropical dry forests, continued collaborations with Dr. Andres Garcia of UNAM/Colima, and served as a guest instructor in the Vertebrate Biology field course for Ph.D. students at the National University of Mexico (UNAM). Dr. Ernest collaborated with Dr. Gerardo Ceballos of UNAM/Mexico City to begin analyzing responses of tropical dry forest small mammals to climatic events such as El Ninó.
- Kelsey Ellis (BS '05) has been accepted into the MA/PhD program in Physical Anthropology at UT/Austin. She will start there in the fall.
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Biology News - Winter 2009
- Biology graduate students Aja Woodrow, Michelle Lester, April Barreca, Wenbin Mei, Susan Brady, and Kori Ault attended the Northwest Partners for Amphibian and Reptile Conservation (PARC) meetings in Portland on Feb 17 and the Society for Northwest Vertebrate Biology (SNVB) meetings at Skamania Lodge on Feb 18-20. Kori presented a poster titled "Diversity of Water Molds Infecting Amphibian Embryos" and Aja presented his poster titled "Effects of savage logging and succession post-stand replacement fire." Susan presented her poster titled "Yakima WATERS Project: Connecting Students to Science Through Local Watershed," and Wenbin's poster was titled "The cost of reproduction in tail loss lizards: a case study in northern grass lizard (Takydromus septentrionalis)." April presented her research on "Overwintering of Cascade Frogs in Washington" in a session, and Michelle won the award for Best Student Poster for her poster titled "Monitoring Assesment of Amphibians in the Snoqualmie Pass Corridor." April was also a session moderator for the wetlands and streams segment. CWU was recognized as the school with the most students in attendance.
Joanna and Gracie Galindo
- Jason Irwin, accompanied by graduate student Shawn Corrigan and undergraduate students Joanna Galindo, Gracie Galindo, and Christopher Gaulke, attended the Society for Integrative and Comparative Biology's annual meeting in Boston, MA. Joanna and Gracie presented their McNair scholars research in a poster titled "The Effects of Temperature on Metabolic Rate, Venom Synthesis and Potency in Peucetia viridans (Araneae: Oxyopidae)". Christopher gave a poster titled "High infection rates of the fungus Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis in biological supply and wild-caught frogs in central Washington State, USA", which summarized his research as a McNair scholar. Graduate student Shawn Corrigan gave a talk titled "Supercool social wasps: lower lethal limits to cold tolerance", which highlighted his research investigating supercooling in wasps.
- Biology senior Aaron Gilbertsen has been offered a position in the Class of 2013 at the Washington State University College of Veterinary Medicine. Classes will begin in August 2009. Biology senior Marcie Mullen has been offered a position in the Class of 2013 at Oregon State Unversity College of Veterinary Medicine and will begin in September 2009.
- Several members of the Department of Biological Sciences attended a special meeting at the Washington Department of Transportation's I-90 Snoqualmie Pass Project Office (Yakima) in December, 2008. Several presentations were given by CWU personnel to the WSDOT staff to provide updates on the ongoing wildlife/fish monitoring projects as well as to discuss research plans for 2009 season. In attendance were Dave Darda, Kris Ernest, and Paul James along with graduate student Michelle Lester and Research Associate Robert Long.
|Biology graduate student Patrick Emblidge will be presenting two papers at the Desert Tortoise Council Symposium in Mesquite, NV at the end of February. The title of his papers are "A predictive habitat suitability model as a conservation tool for the Gila monster (Heloderma suspectum cinctum) in Washington County, Utah" and "Seasonal Gila monster activity patterns in Southwest Utah: an application of Temperature Based Activity Estimation (TBAE)".|
- Biology graduate Katie Lantau has accepted a job as a Medical Technologist at Kadlac Medical Center in Richland. Katie completed her one year internship at Sacred Heart Medical Center in Spokane and passed her board exams, the required national test for all practicing medical technologists.
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Biology News - Fall 2008
- Blaise Dondji, Biology, was invited by the Departments of Microbiology and Dermatology, Johannes Gutenberg University, Mainz, Germany to their Seminar Series on "Invasion and Persistence of Infection" held on November 11, 2008 in Mainz, Germany. He gave a seminar entitled "Immunological studies of hookworm and Leishmania infections: from the bench to the field and back".
- At the invitation of the Volkswagen Foundation, Hannover, Germany, Blaise Dondji, Biology, participated at the workshop on 'Scientific Cooperation with Developing Countries - The Swiss Guidelines and their Implementation". The workshop was hosted by the Center for Development Research, University of Bonn, from November 13 - 14, 2008 in Bonn, Germany.
- Biology undergraduate Radha Vashist received $500.00 from the Undergraduate Research Program for her study titled, "Leaf decomposition in under- and aboveground reaches of urban streams in Ellensburg, Washington" and Geography undergraduate Tanya Lamb received $500.00 from the Undergraduate Research Program for her study titled, "Seasonal effects on nutrient limitation to autotrophic and heterotrophic biofilms in a salmon-bearing stream". Both students are mentored by Clay Arango.
- Washington Water Resource Center has awarded Clay Arango, Biology, and co-PI Carey Gazis, Geology, a grant of $27,000 (Federal money) for a study titled, "The influence of large wood addition on nitrogen transformations at the surface water/groundwater interface".
- Mary Bottcher, Instructional and Classroom Support Technician 3, was awarded Employee of the Month for Novermber, 2008. President Gaudino presented the award to Mary in January 2009 at a surprise party with her co-workers. Congratulations!
- Kari Taylor, Biology, recently received a promotion as her position was upgraded to a Secretary Supervisor. Congratulations!
- In November of 2008, Biology's Instructional and Classroom Support Techs Jody Scheffelmaier, Jonathan Betz, and Mary Bottcher, along with Jeff Wilcox (Bio/Chem/Geo), Cynthia Kuhken (Chem), and Mari Sorey (Chem), attended a 24-hour Laboratory Safety Course presented by the Lab Safety Institute of Natick, Massachusetts. Jack Breazeale, a former chemistry professor from Charleston, SC, taught the course on the CWU campus in the Science Building. Having this course taught on site gave the group considerable one-on-one feed-back in addition to providing an on-site critique of their labs and current safety practices. The course will enable them to improve their current Safety Programs to meet new guidelines and regulations along with determining "Needs Assessment". One result of the class is that Biology students are now able to view a presentation on "Lab Safety" (thanks to Jonathan's expertise on PowerPoint) before starting their first lab. Mary, Jonathan and Jody have increased their safety awareness and learned how to address specific safety issues.
- Former graduate student Paul Houghtaling is currently working with researchers from UC Santa Cruz on the Bay Area Puma Project. An article about his work on this project has been published in the San Francisco Bay Chronicle .
- Robert Weaver, who studied under Dave Darda and received his Masters of Science in 2006, has published a portion of his Master's research, "Distribution, abundance, and habitat associations of the night snake (Hypsiglena torquata) in Washington State". 2008. Northwestern Naturalist. 89(3):164-170. Robert is currently in a doctoral program at Washington State University.
- Graduate student April Barreca was awarded an honorable mention at the Joint Meeting for Ichthyologists and Herpetologists this summer in Montreal for presenting her data titled "Overwintering of Rana cascadae" (Cascades frogs).
- Several graduate students from Biology continue to participate in the NSF sponsored Yakima WATERS program. WATERS graduate student April Barreca, Biology, took her high school students from White Swan High School on three exciting field trips this fall: one to explore the Shrub Steppe near Satus Creek with the help of Katrina Strathmann, who works at Yakama Resources and Range, a second, in conjunction with a chemistry class, to test water quality from Toppenish Creek to the Yakima River, and a third to the Prosser Fish Hatchery, where students got to see staff members strip eggs and milt from spawning salmon and also hold a beating salmon heart in their hands. She has also been able to schedule bringing live animals into her classroom for her "Beast of the Week" presentation thanks to Jonathan Betz, Biology Stockroom.
- Dan Selski's undergraduate research student, Brandi Landis, who is currently working on a BA in Biology, has been accepted into the Pacific Northwest University of Health Sciences School of Osteopathic Medicine in Yakima. She will be starting in September, 2009.
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Biology News - Summer 2008
- Lucinda Carnell was awarded a 2 year RIG (Research Initiation Grant) from NSF beginning this fall to characterize serotonin-signaling pathways involved in behavior adaptation in the nematode, C. elegans.
- Lixing Sun has three new peer-reviewed papers that he completed and submitted recently: (1.) Zhang J.X., D. Liu, L. Sun, R. Wei, G. Zhang, H. Wu, H. Zhang and C.Zhao. 2008. Potential chemosignals in the anog enital gland secretion of giant pandas, Ailuropoda melanoleuca, associated with sex and individual identity. Journal of Chemical Ecology, 34: 398-407; (2.) Zhang J.X., X. Rao, L. Sun, D. Wang, D. Liu and C. Zhao. 2008. Cohabitation impaired physiology, fitness and sex-related chemosignals in golden hamsters. Physiology and Behavior, 93:1071-1077; (3.) Zhang, J. X., Y. J. Liu, J. H. Zhang, and L. Sun. 2008. Dual role of preputial gland secretion and its major components in sex recognition of mice. Physiology and Behavior 95:388-394. The third article was cited and highlighted by the British Journal Nature (China) as a significant new discovery in ecology and evolution and can be found online in Nature China Highlights - Subject Category: Ecology and Evolution, 27 August 2008 | doi:10.1038/nchina.2008.197
- Dave Darda presented an invited public lecture at the Barn Beach Reserve in Leavenworth on September 12. The evening presentation, "Amphibians and Reptiles of Central Washington" was part of Barn Beach's public lecture series on the natural history of north central Washington. Approximately 60 people attended. A smaller group accompanied Dr. Darda on an all-day field trip the following day.
- Jim Johnson and Ian Quitadamo published a manuscript (with an undergrad researcher) this summer: Quitadamo, I. J., Faiola, C. L., Johnson, J. E., Kurtz, M. J. 2008. Community-based inquiry improves critical thinking in general education biology. Cell Biol. Educ. 7(3):327-37.
- Holly Pinkart published two papers from the Soap Lake Research lab this summer: Vanengelen, M., B. Peyton, M. Mormile, and H. Pinkart. 2008. Fe(III), Cr(VI), and Fe(III) mediated Cr(VI) reduction in alkaline media using a Halomonas isolate from Soap Lake, Washington. Biodegradation 19: 841-850 and Dimitriu, P., H. Pinkart, B. Peyton, and M. Mormile. 2008. Spatial and Temporal Patterns in the Microbial Diversity of a Meromictic Soda Lake in Washington State. Appl. Envir. Microbiol. 74: 4877-4888
- Ian Quitadamo was asked to serve on the Washington State Leadership and Assistance for Science Education (LASER) Steering Committee, overseeing science education for much of the state.
- In July, Dave Darda accepted a one-year appointment as the Associate Dean of the College of the Sciences.
- Ian Quitadamo became a member of the Washington State Teachers Association Executive Board.
- Ian Quitadamo became a Washington State Quality Award Examiner (based on national Baldrige organizational excellence criteria). He will be involved when CWU submits a lite application.
- Holly Pinkart's undergraduate research student, David Justus, was awarded an internship at the National Institutes of Health at the end of spring quarter. David started working on stem cell research at NIH this summer.
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Biology News - Spring 2008
- Linda Raubeson and undergraduate Science Honors student Skip McCoy (first author) with Jennifer Kuehl (DOE Joint Genome Institute and Lawrence Berkeley National Lab) and Jeffrey Boore (DOE Joint Genome Institute and Lawrence Berkeley, UC-Berkeley, and Genome Project Solutions) had their paper, "The complete plastid genome sequence of Welwitschia mirabilis: an unusually compact plastome with accelerated divergence rates" published in BMC Evolutionary Biology 2008, 8:130 in May 2008.
- Linda Raubeson and Lucinda Carnell were recipients of the 2008 Equipment Grant Awards for their proposal titled "Thermocyclers: Essential Equipment for Biological Sciences". Gabriel Stryker and Holly Pinkart were also recipients for their proposal of "Real-time (Quantitative) Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) System." Their proposals were evaluated by academic affairs administrators and a five person committee made up of members from each of the four colleges and the library.
- Lixing Sun and coauthors Drs. Jianxu Zhang, Kevin Bruce and Milos Novotny have received attention from MSNBC, LiveScience, Yahoo.com and the Washington Post regarding their paper "Chronic exposure of cat odor enhances aggression, urinary attractiveness and sex pheromones of mice" which was published in the Journal of Ethology (279-286)
Biology News - Winter 2008
- Paul James and graduate students Andrew Puls and Allison Johnson attended the "Annual Meeting of the North Pacific International Chapter of the American Fisheries Society" in Bellingham, WA, on March 4-6, 2008. Paul and Andrew co-authored a paper that Andrew presented titled "Microhabiotat Partitioning in an Eastern Cascades Stream Fish Assemblage" and Andrew won second place ($125) for the his presentation in the student paper competition at the meeting.
- Steve Wagner and other CWU biologists have established the Amphibian Decline Research Fund. According to Dr. Wagner, several CWU researchers are at the forefront of research that investigates factors contributing to both the worldwide and regional decline of amphibians in Washington State. However, amphibians, and also reptiles, are underrepresented groups for the funding of research at the state or federal level although it has been reported that approximately 1/3 of the world's amphibians are threatened with extinction. Therefore, in order for these biologists to continue to be leaders in herpetological research and provide educational and research opportunities for CWU students and faculty, they have created the Amphibian Decline Research Fund. The group is currently focusing their efforts on the disease factors contributing to amphibian decline, long-term monitoring of amphibian biodiversity in Washington State and the Yellow Mountains of China, a research expedition to document the biodiversity of amphibians in southern Borneo (Indonesia), and providing small grants to enhance research and emergency funding for projects. If you are interested in supporting the amphibian or herpetological research at CWU please contact Dr. Steve Wagner, phone 509-963-3105 or email at email@example.com.
- Lixing Sun was awarded a College of the Sciences Faculty Summer Research Grant for a $3000 study called "Differential recombination rate between males and females as a consequence of sexual conflict".
- Susan (Belmont) Brady, an undergraduate researcher, Jim Johnson, and Steve Wagner presented a paper titled "DNA Barcoding and Amphibian saprolegniasis" at the Joint Wildlife Society and Society for Northwestern Vertebrate Biology annual meetings in Missoula Montana on February 25-29. In addition, Kori Ault, NSF graduate fellow, John Arlt, Ellensburg High School teacher, Jim Johnson and Steve Wagner presented a poster entitled "Yakima WATERs Project: Team HERPS Helps to Enhance Research in Public Schools". April Barraca, graduate student, and Jason Irwin presented a poster titled "Frogs in the Snow: Where do they go? The overwintering strategies of Cascade Frogs (Rana cascadae)". Aja Woodrow, graduate student, presented a poster entitled "Effects of salvage logging on an Eastern Cascade Bird community 12-13 years post stand-replacement fire".
- Dave Darda presented an invited public lecture at Yakima Valley Community College on January 29. The presentation was part of YVCC's Visiting Lecture Series and was titled "Andy Rooney's Eyebrows, the Human Tailbone, and that Thing that Hangs Down in the Back of Your Throat: Oddball Anatomical Structures and the Stories they Tell". Approximately 200 people attended.
- Kori Ault, NSF Fellow, and Steve Wagner attended the NSF sponsored GK-12 conference in Washington D.C., Feb 29- March 2, and presented their contributions to the Yakima WATERs Project.
- Jim Johnson, Susan Belmont (undergraduate researcher), and R. Steven Wagner published a paper titled "DNA Barcoding as a means to identify organisms associated with amphibian eggs" in Herpetological Conservation and Biology 3:116-127.
- Ian Quitadamo was nominated to the Washington Science Teacher Association Executive Board as a representative of Teachers of Teachers of Science (TOTOS), a state-wide consortium of higher education institutions involved in science teacher education.
- Jim Johnson and Steve Wagner co-authored a paper along with Tara Chestnut (WSDOT) titled "Results of amphibian chytrid (Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis) sampling in Denali National Park, Alaska, USA" that is currently in press for Herpetological Review.
- Steve Wagner was a co-author of a submitted paper with Chinese colleagues (Bin Wang, Jianping Jia, Feng Xie, Xiaohong Chen, Gang Liang) from the Chinese Academy of Sciences, Chengdu Institute of Biology titled "Phylogeographic evidence of diversification and range expansion in the Feirana complex across central China" to Molecular Ecology.
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Biology News - Fall 2007
- Linda Raubeson published a paper entitled "Comparative chloroplast genomics: analyses including new sequences from the angiosperms Nuphar advena and Ranunculus macranthus" published in Biomed Central Genomics Volume 2007, issue 8, 27 pgs.
- Linda Raubeson presented a paper at the Botany and Plant Biology Congress, Chicago, July 8-11, 2007. Five undergraduate students and two other members of my lab also presented on their research. Two of the undergraduates were supported to work in the lab over the summer on REU supplements to her NSF grants.
- Linda Raubeson submitted a manuscript for review based on a CWU science honors thesis.
- Jason Irwin attended a grant-writing workshop along with Roger Fouts at Simon Frazier University organized by The Grant Institute.
- Steve Wagner contributed to a successful biodiversity field school in China during the summer and then conducted amphibian biodiversity fieldwork in Borneo for two weeks.
- Ian Quitadamo, Steve Wagner and Paul James contributed to a successful workshop to initiate the NSF WATERS grant along with several graduate student fellows and public school science teachers.
- Holly Pinkart co-authored a paper titled "Coevolution of cyanophage and cyanobacteria in an Antarctic lake" published in Instruments, Methods, and Missions for Astrobiology X. Proc. SPIE 6694: 54-67 and co-authored another titled "Diversity, evolution, and horizontal gene transfer in soda lakes" published in Instruments, Methods, and Missions for Astrobiology X.
Biology News - Summer 2007
- Steve Wagner, (Biology), Megan Matheson (Psychology), and Lori Sheeran (Anthropology) offered the Biodiversity and Primate Behavior Field Research Program for the third year. This collaboration between Central Washington University and Anhui University was held from late July through late August, 2007, at the Valley of the Wild Monkeys, Huangshan Scenic Spot, China. Seven students participated in this program, accompanying them to the China. Directly following this program, Steve Wagner was invited to assess the biodiversity and disease status of amphibians occurring in Tanjung Putting Preserve near Pankglabun, Borneo.
- Jason Irwin co-authored a paper with Julie Lee-Yaw and David Green titled, "Post-glacial range expansion from northern refugia by the wood frog, Rana sylvatica", which has been accepted to Molecular Ecology.
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Biology News - Winter 2007
- Tom Cottrell returned from his international exchange in China.
- An informational meeting about the I-90 Snoqualmie Pass East Project and potential associated research opportunities was held Friday, January 19, 1:00-3:00pm in Science 147. Project members from WSDOT made a presentation and hoped to get an idea of CWU's interest and potential involvement. The meeting was very well attended.
- Steve Wagner attended the Mathematics Meetings in New Orleans in early January and gave a presentation with Tim Englund from the Math Department.
- Paul James and Kris Ernest received funding from the COTS equipment grant program for teaching and research equipment for field biology studies.
- Dan Selski, Jason Irwin, and Dave Darda received funding from the COTS equipment grant program for anatomical models, skeletal material, and a cadaver for teaching Human Anatomy and Physiology.
- Biology student, Amy Redburn was accepted into Case Western Dental School.
- Darwin Day-Darwin Week presentations and activities were all well attended. Thanks to Jason Irwin, Steve Wagner, Jim Johnson, Kari Taylor, Dave Darda, and Alex Glass for planning and coordinating this very successful event - our 6th annual.
- Jim Johnson and Steve Wagner have received funding via a contract with the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife for work with amphibian fungal infections.
- CWU had a strong showing with the second most talks given at the Society for Northwest Vertebrate Biology meetings in Victoria, B.C. in late February.
- Biology major Susan Belmont received the "Best Presentation Award" for her talk on chytrid fungus infection in local frog populations. The title of her talk: Teasing Apart Death and Pestilence: Demography and Infection of Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis in a Natural Population of Pacific Treefrogs. Susan worked with Steve Wagner and Jim Johnson.
- Christopher Gaulke, undergraduate with Jason Irwin, Jim Johnson and Steve Wagner, presented a talk entitled, "Pathophysiology of Chytridiomycosis in Amphibians".
- Michelle Lester, undergraduate with advisors Lori Sheeran (Anthro), Megan Matheson (Psych), and Steve Wagner, presented a talk entitled, "Demography of Pachytriton brevepis in Huangshan China".
- Steve Wagner and Jim Johnson presented a talk entitled, "Synergistic interactions among an herbicide and pathogen: a potential evolutionary arms race".
- Tara Chestnut (Washington Dept. of Transportation), Jim Johnson, and Steve Wagner presented a talk entitled, "Detecting a deadly amphibian disease: are park visitors inadvertent vectors?"
- Dan Beck and his graduate student, Patrick Emblidge, attended the Desert Tortoise Council meetings in Las Vegas, Nevada Feb. 23 and 24. Dan was invited by the Council to talk about Gila monster biology and sign copies of his Gila monster book. His invited talk was entitled, "History, Humans, and Heloderma: Why Monsters Matter", followed by a reception/book signing. He also organized a session (7 talks, 2 posters) on Gila Monster biology and gave another talk entitled, "Introduction and Overview of Bumpy Lizard Biology". Following the meetings, Dan and Patrick conducted field trips to Gila Monster habitat in Nevada and Utah, where Patrick will conduct his thesis research.
- Linda Raubeson and Rhiannon Peery taught a two-day basic botany workshop to the Kittitas County Master Gardeners. About 30 master gardeners attended Feb 22nd and 27th. The workshops were hosted in the Biology Department at CWU where attendees were able to benefit from Department's prepared slide collection, microscopes, and greenhouse (which they enjoy very much). The Department has hosted such workshops for many years.
- Linda Raubeson has learned that the two requests that she made to NSF for REU Supplements have been funded. These provide supplemental funds to existing grants to support undergraduate researchers over the summer. She has been recommended to receive a $7,000 supplement to the Chloroplast Genomics grant to support student Skip McCoy this coming summer and a $6,000 supplement to the Gymnosperm Tree of Life grant to support student Ashley Dutton.
- Response from faculty interested in potential involvement with the I-90 Snoqualmie Pass East Project was very strong - 16 people associated with 7 departments proposed 29 ideas for potential projects!
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Biology News - Fall 2006
- Mary Poulson has had another paper accepted for publication. "Response of Photosynthesis to High Light and Drought for Arabidopsis thaliana Grown Under a UV-B Enhanced Light Regime" (Poulson, Boeger and Donahue). It will be published in the peer-reviewed journal, Photosynthesis Research and is the result of research carried out during her research leave in Spring 2006.
- Steve Wagner has another paper in press, this one in the Journal of Heredity, a top-tier genetics journal. The paper describes the genetic diversity of Southern Torrent Salamander, a Pacific Northwest endemic mature forest-associated species, and defines conservation units. "Spatial genetic structure and regional demography in the southern torrent salamander" by M.P. Miller, S.M. Haig, and R.S. Wagner.
- Co-PIs Gazis, Wagner, Quitadomo, Kurtz, and Pratt-Situala have been awarded a 3.2 million G - K12 NSF grant - the Yakima WATERS project. This interdisciplinary project will fund 6 graduate students per year in COTS and is designed to bring a more mature science curriculum into local middle schools and high schools.
- Susan Belmont, an undergraduate in biology under the mentorship of Steve Wagner and Jim Johnson, presented a talk at an international meeting sponsored by the Canadian Amphibian and Reptile Conservation Network. The presentation, "Chytridiomycosis in Pacific Northwest Amphibians: Death and Pestilence in Your Backyard", highlighted research on the growing threat to Northwest amphibian biodiversity.
- On Nov. 3, four faculty members from the Biology Department at Yakima Valley Community College met with our Curriculum Committee to discuss and compare our introductory majors sequences. Following the meeting, a social hour allowed for more informal discussion among Biology faculty, staff, and graduate students and our YVCC colleagues.
- On November 3-4, Dave Darda attended the Northwest Regional Human Anatomy and Physiology (HAPS) Conference. Session topics included high altitude physiology, offering online anatomy and physiology, and interactive cadaver imaging technology.
- Kris Ernest is co-author of a recently published paper concerning conifer forest canopy ecology: Shaw, D.C., K. A. Ernest, H. B. Rinker, and M.D. Lowman. 2006. Stand-level herbivory in an old-growth conifer forest canopy. Western North American Naturalist 66(4):473-481.
- Lixing Sun is co-author of a recently published paper concerning Giant Panda behavior: Juan Liu, Yue Chen, Liran Guo, Bo Gu, Hui Liu, Anyan Hou, Xuefeng Liu, Lixing Sun, and Dingzhen Liu. Stereotypic behavior and fecal cortisol level in captive Giant Pandas in relation to environmental enrichment. 2006. Zoo Biology 25:445-459.
- Holly Pinkart and her research group have submitted three abstracts (one undergraduate and one graduate student as co-authors) for the American Society for Microbiology general meeting this coming spring.
- Biology major Erika Nelson has been accepted to veterinary school in Scotland.
- Darlene Boykiw reports that eleven students are applying to medical school this year. Levente Fabry, Chemistry, is the pre-med advisor.
- Robbie Soltz helped to secure a sizable donation of materials and equipment (worth $10-15,000) to the Biology and Chemistry Departments. The connection came through a student in one of Robbie's classes.
- Jason Irwin and Dave Darda have just returned from Phoenix where the annual meeting of the Society for Integrative and Comparative Biology was held Jan. 3-7. Jason gave two presentations summarizing work done here at CWU as well as work done before joining our faculty. Both projects involved CWU students - undergraduate and graduate. Oral presentation: "A climate-based model of winter energy consumption to examine the southern range limit of the goldenrod gall fly (Eurosta solidaginis) on late goldenrod (Solidago gigantea) Poster presentation: Phylogeography of wood frogs (Rana sylvatica): mtDNA cytochrome b sequences indicate a deep East-West division Dave had a good number of discussions with colleagues whose work is related to his upcoming sabbatical project.
- Our faculty search yielded 60 applicants. The search committee has narrowed the field to nine finalists. Letters have been requested, and we anticipate extending invitations very soon.
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Biology News - Summer 2006
- Tom Cottrell is on an international exchange for Fall Quarter at Anhui University in China.
- Steve Wagner, Megan Matheson (Psychology), and Lori Sheeran (Anthropology) organized and offered, for the second time, the Biodiversity and Primate Behavior Field Research Program. This collaboration between Central Washington University and Anhui University was held during late July through late August 2006 at the Valley of the Wild Monkeys, Huangshan Scenic Spot, China. By all reports, it was again very much of a success.
- The Department held its annual fall retreat on Thursday, September 14 at the Lazy F Camp and Retreat Center. Topics included Murdock grant possibilities, our upcoming faculty search, program assessment, and curricular issues relating to our introductory majors' sequence.
- Mary Poulson has a new publication: "Effects of ultraviolet-B radiation on leaf morphology for Arabidopsis thaliana (L.) Heynh. (Brassicaceae)." Acta Botanica Brasilia 20(2):329-338.
- Linda Raubeson attended the Botany 2006 meetings, which serves as the annual conference for several national botanical societies. They were held in Chico, CA from July 28th to Aug 2nd. She attended along with Rhiannon Peery (former MS student, current project tech), Skip McCoy (undergrad, Science Honors student) and Stephanie Margheim (undergrad, STEP sophomore researcher). Skip and Stephanie each presented their research from the past year in poster presentations; Rhiannon and Linda each gave oral presentations.
- Linda Raubeson also received a new grant -- funded through the NSF Tree of Life program. Overall 4-year award is for $3M, Harvard is the lead institution. Fifteen PIs and Co-PIs and a dozen institutions are participating in the overall collaborative grant/project. Title: Gymnosperms on the Tree of Life: Resolving the Phylogeny of Seed Plants. The CWU based award (Raubeson, PI) is for $493,500.
- Holly Pinkart has a new publication in one of the International Society for Optical Engineering electronic journals: "The sulfur cycle in a permanently meromictic haloalkaline lake." Proceedings of the Instruments, Methods, and Missions for Astrobiology IX. SPIE Digital Library: http://spiedl.org.
- Robbie Soltz and Wendy Bohrson (Geology) have submitted a STEM STEP Proposal to NSF.
- Robbie Soltz , Jim Cook (History), and Moose Mack (Economics) submitted an NSF REU Proposal to do Conservation/Water Resource Management studies in NW China.
- Lixing Sun spend part of his summer pursuing research activities in China.
- Lixing Sun has a new publication: "The Effect of Male Competition on Female Choice in the Brandt's Vole" in the European journal Folia Zoologica.
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