Science research roundup: August 2019

Researchers in Arts & Sciences were recently awarded grants from the National Science Foundation, NASA, and other organizations.

The NSF Center for Sustainable Polymers (CSP) has been awarded a $20 million grant renewal from the National Science Foundation in support of its research. The CSP, based at the University of Minnesota, partners with researchers from around the country, including William Tolman, William Greenleaf Eliot Professor of Chemistry and associate dean of research in Arts & Sciences.

Jonathan Losos, William H. Danforth Distinguished University Professor in the Department of Biology, was awarded $1,103,212 from the National Science Foundation for a project titled "Convergent evolution across time and space: Evolutionary diversity and contemporary adaptation in new and old world lizards."

Meredith Jackrel, assistant professor of chemistry, received a $300,000 grant from the ALS Association to support a project titled "Countering the aggregation of TDP-43, FUS, DPRS, and Matrin 3 with engineered protein disaggregases."

Ray Arvidson, James S. McDonnell Distinguished University Professor in the Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences, received $273,894 from Johns Hopkins University/NASA to support Extended Mission 5 of the Compact Reconnaissance Imaging Spectrometer for Mars (CRISM).

Holden Thorp, Rita Levi-Montalcini Distinguished University Professor, has been named editor-in-chief of the Science family of journals, widely recognized as being among the world’s most prestigious publications dedicated to research and science. Thorp holds faculty appointments in both chemistry and medicine.

The National Science Foundation has awarded a grant of $146,551 to a group of interdepartmental collaborators to support the Center for Quantum Sensors. The project is under the direction of Kater Murch, associate professor of physics in Arts & Sciences; Ron K. Cytron, professor and associate department chair of computer science and engineering in the McKelvey School of Engineering; Sophia E. Hayes, professor of chemistry in Arts & Sciences; James H. Buckley, professor of physics in Arts & Sciences; and Erik A. Henriksen, assistant professor of physics in Arts & Sciences.

Ray Arvidson, James S. McDonnell Distinguished University Professor in the Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences, received $135,00 from JPL/NASA to support his role as interdisciplinary scientist for the Mars Odyssey Eighth Extended Mission.

Jeffrey Catalano, professor of Earth and planetary sciences, and Kaushik Mitra, graduate student in Earth and planetary sciences, received $123,950 from NASA-FINESST for a project titled "Chlorate as an Fe and Mn oxidant on the Martian surface."

Joseph Jez, Howard Hughes Medical Institute Professor and chair of the Department of Biology, and two former researchers in Jez Laboratory, PA Rea and RE Cahoon, were awarded a new US patent for "Transgenic plants exhibiting enhanced phytochelatin-based heavy metal tolerance and methods of use thereof."

Sara Sanders, a postdoctoral research associate working with Petra Levin in the Department of Biology, received a $50,004 fellowship from the W. M. Keck Postdoctoral Program in Molecular Medicine.

Keith Hengen, assistant professor of biology, received a McKnight Scholar Award from the McKnight Foundation. The award supports neuroscientists in the early stages of their careers who are focusing on disorders of learning and memory.

Savannah Martin, graduate student of biological anthropology, was awarded $25,200 from the National Science Foundation for her doctoral dissertation research project titled "Cultural identity as a moderator of stress physiology." Martin is under the direction of EA Quinn, associate professor of physical anthropology.

Elizabeth Mueller, a DBBS graduate fellow working with Petra Levin in the Department of Biology, received a $20,000 fellowship from the CDC's Center for Surveillance, Epidemiology, and Laboratory Services (CSELS).

Joseph Jez, Howard Hughes Medical Institute Professor and chair of the Department of Biology, received a $15,525 research gift from Clean Earth for the evaluation of engineered Brassica for bioremediation of heavy metals.

David Fike, professor of Earth and planetary sciences and director of environmental studies, received an $8,000 grant from Agouron in support of the 2019 Midwest Geobiology Symposium.

Did we miss something? Contact Shawn Ballardcommunications specialist in Arts & Sciences.