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From Molecules to Minds

UC Davis neuroscientists advance learning and memory research to decode how our brains work

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Gail Patricelli Honored with Distinguished Teaching Award

April 18, 2018
A big congratulations is in order for Professor Gail Patricelli, Department of Evolution and Ecology, who will receive a Distinguished Teaching Award from the UC Davis Academic Senate and Academic Federation.

UC Davis Researchers Talk Science and Society

April 13, 2018
In a Q&A style article appearing in The Conversation, UC Davis researchers, including Professor Susan Williams, Department of Evolution and Ecology, talk about science and public engagement.

Investigating the Molecular Defense Tactics of Plants

April 11, 2018
In a study appearing in Cell Host & Microbe, UC Davis graduate student Neeraj Lal, Professors Savithramma Dinesh-Kumar and Andrew J Fisher and their colleagues reveal the versatility of plants’ molecular defenses. The findings provide a strategic map revealing how plants allocate resources and have the potential to help bolster crop immune systems and improve their development and growth.

Neelima Sinha Honored with Fellow of American Society of Plant Biologists Award

April 10, 2018
For her long-term contributions to the plant biology field, Sinha was recently honored by the American Society of Plant Biologists (ASPB) with a Fellow of ASPB Award, which recognizes distinguished members who have contributed to the society for at least 10 years.

Stacey Combes and "Why These Bumblebees Are Wearing Itty-Bitty QR Codes" in Wired

April 06, 2018
Assistant Professor Stacey Combes and colleagues put tiny QR codes on the backs of bumblebees to reveal their social lives. Combes' research with former Harvard graduate student James Crall, published in Nature Communications, is the subject of a new Wired article, "Why These Bumblebees Are Wearing Itty-Bitty QR Codes."

Plant Biochemist Is UC Davis’ Top Teacher

April 03, 2018
For Judy Callis, teaching is about helping students make connections. Those connections led to Callis, professor and vice chair of the Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology in the College of Biological Sciences, being awarded the UC Davis Prize for Undergraduate Teaching and Scholarly Achievement.

Investigating the Seagrass Microbiome

March 28, 2018
Seagrass carpets the seafloor creating a unique and vital ecosystem in shallow marine environments. Sea turtles graze on seagrass leaves while smaller organisms seek refuge in the green fields but, on the microscopic level, seagrass is also home to microbial communities. Such microbes compose the seagrass microbiome and potentially play a role in seagrass ecology.

Ben Young Landis, ’03 B.A. in Evolution and Ecology, Founder and Executive Chair of Capital Science Communicators

March 28, 2018
As an independent communications consultant and founder and executive chair of the professional network Capital Science Communicators, Ben Young Landis strategizes methods to communicate science to both general audiences and other groups from non-scientific backgrounds. To do so effectively, he takes cues from marketing principles.

Cholesterol Research from UC Davis Highlighted in PNAS Blog

March 27, 2018

Distinguished Professor Jodi Nunnari, Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology, and Marina Besprozvannaya, a postdoctoral researcher, recently published a new study on the movement of cholesterol transporters and other molecules in the scientific journal eLIFE. Their work, along with three other studies, is synthesized in a new blog post on Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences' website.

Q&A with Grace Ha: Making "Nature" Real and Meaningful in Everyday Life

March 26, 2018
Grace Ha is a Ph.D. candidate in marine ecology at UC Davis, where her thesis focuses on the analysis of camouflage in marine ecosystems. She is participating in the Leaders for the Future program, a five-month cross-campus collaboration between the Office of Research, the Internship and Career Center, GradPathways (Graduate Studies) and our institute. She recently participated in the Food, Ag + Health Entrepreneurship Academy as our 2018 Harkins Fellow.

March of Dimes Award Supports Richard McKenney’s Research into Prenatal Brain Development

March 15, 2018
For more than a decade, Assistant Professor Richard McKenney, Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology, has dedicated his research to the microscopic world of movement and transportation within cells. Now, a two-year, $150,000 research award from the March of Dimes will support his research to better understand how molecular dysfunction influences prenatal brain development.

Feeding the Future

March 12, 2018
UC Davis researchers are exploring the survival strategies of wild and parasitic plants to help cultivate the climate-resistant food crops of tomorrow.

Bacteria of the Flies: Tracing the Spread of Disease-Controlling Wolbachia

March 09, 2018
In a study appearing in Current Biology, Michael Turelli, distinguished professor of genetics in the Department of Evolution and Ecology, and his colleagues traced the spread of closely related Wolbachia across Drosophila fly species. They found that while the flies evolutionarily diverged tens of millions of years ago, their Wolbachia bacteria diverged only tens of thousands of years ago.