The 2016 Biochemistry @ Iowa newsletter is hot off the presses and available for download. Alumni and friends should receive a hard copy in the mail this week. If you would like to be added to our mailing list, please send your contact information to firstname.lastname@example.org. While you are at it, feel free to send us your news and updates! Previous newsletters are also available online.
Archive for the ‘Casey Andrews’ Category
The FUTURE in Biomedicine program, founded in 2009 by Madeline Shea, is developing a statewide network of scientist-educators and a pipeline of prospective students for our graduate and clinical program. The 7th annual program brought 25 faculty Fellows and students from primarily undergraduate institutions in Iowa to conduct research and pursue collaborations with UI faculty through summer laboratory work and weekly professional development activities. The Fellows also received support to use our state-of-the-art research core facilities such as those in genomics, crystallography and NMR.
Of the 13 Faculty Fellows, four worked with host professors in Biochemistry. Dr. Gary Coombs from Waldorf College worked on the role of lamins in regulating muscle function and metabolism with Professor Lori Wallrath. Dr. Heriberto Hernandez from Grinnell College worked on the role of thermodynamics in the formulation of pharmaceuticals with Assistant Professor Mike Schnieders. Dr. Hernandez was supported by the Ruth Ann Henriksen Fellowship that honors Dr. Henriksen, a Ph.D. graduate of our department who pursued her academic career at East Carolina University. Two Fellows from Drake University – Adina Kilpatrick in Physics and Jerry Honts in Biology – pursued a joint collaboration on Tetrahymena calcium-binding proteins with Professor Madeline Shea.
Two additional Faculty Fellows are Biochemistry Alumni – Dr. Ugur Akgun, now on the Physics faculty at Coe College had been a postdoctoral fellow with Shahram Khademi, and Dr. Heidi Sleister in Biology at Drake University was a former BSURF student.
In addition, Ms. Dulce Chavez from St. Mary-of-the-Woods was the first recipient of the Gioannini Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship honoring our former colleague Dr. Theresa L. Gioannini, who held a joint appointment in Biochemistry. Mr. Adam Page, of Kirkwood Community College, conducted research with Professor E. Dale Abel, a joint appointee in Biochemistry, and Adam’s participation in the activities of the FUTURE in Biomedicine program were arranged by Ms. Juanita Limas, the faculty Director of the LSAMP program at Kirkwood who earned her B.S. in Biochemistry doing research with Professor Lori Wallrath.
Members of the Department of Biochemistry featured prominently in the weekly activities of the FUTURE in Biomedicine program. These included a session when Professor Dan Weeks described preparation for our Ph.D. programs, a workshop on “3-D Printing in Research and Education” presented jointly by UI Biochemistry Assistant Professor Miles Pufall and Jerry Honts of Drake University, and a Career Panel on making the transition from postdoctoral fellow to teaching faculty, including two Biochemistry postdocs – Dr. Lynne Dieckman formerly in the Musselman laboratory and Dr. Casey Andrews in the Elcock laboratory. In the prior academic year, Dr. Andrews had a mentored semester-long teaching experience at Loras College with 2014 FUTURE Fellow Adam Moser.
The research being conducted in partnerships developed through the FUTURE in Biomedicine program is being published in peer-reviewed journals, and presented at national conferences. This reciprocal network is encouraging excellent candidates to apply to our training opportunities and openings for research assistants and postbac internships. The FUTURE program is committed to advancing closer ties with our alumni in the years ahead.
Xu Liu, a biochemistry PhD student mentored by Dr. Ernesto Fuentes, successfully defended his thesis on December 1, 2014, entitled “Specificity, Structure, Dynamics and Inhibition of the Tiam PDZ Domain/Ligand Complexes”. Xu is currently a post-doctoral research scholar in Dr. Ernesto Fuentes Laboratory. Later this year, he will begin a post-doctoral position in the Laboratory of Georges Mer at the Mayo Clinic.
Casey Andrews, a biochemistry PhD student mentored by Dr. Adrian Elcock successfully defended his thesis on December 2, 2014, entitled “Coarse Grained Potential Functions for Proteins Derived from All-Atom Explicit-Solvent Molecular Dynamics Simulations”. Casey currently holds a post-doctoral research scholar position in the lab of Dr. Adrian Elcock. Casey will also be teaching under Dr. Adam Moser at Loras College in Dubuque, Iowa.
Congratulations Xu and Casey!
Biochem graduate students, led by first years Sarah Hengel, Doug Brucich, Casey Andrews and Nicole Vanderpool, paced the graduate students to a come from behind 7-7 tie at the University of Iowa softball complex today. The game was characterized by surprisingly good fielding by both teams and a nearly miraculous lack of injuries suffered by the faculty, who were ably supported by post-docs, alumni, staff and other able bodied people they recruited to their squad. Thanks go to Lynne Dieckman for organizing the game!
The graduate recruiting season has come to a successful close with nine students committing to the Department of Biochemistry.
Casey Andrews hails from Spring Lake, Michigan and attended Grant Valley State University. An inorganic chemist by training, he has a primary research interest in carcinogenesis.
John Brogie is from Oskaloosa, Iowa and attended Wayne State College. He has conducted research on biofuel production from Clostridium acetobutylicum and plans to do high tech research with awesome facilities.
Yingyue (Annie) Li is from Cangzhou City in China. At Hebei University, she cloned odorant receptor genes from snail antenna. She remarked in her application that she is eager to apply her inquisitiveness, research ability and determination to her PhD at Iowa.
Sufang Mao is from Guangzhou, China and attended South China Agricultural University, where she worked on natural products from the mushroom, Cordyceps militaris. Her main interests are allosteric regulation, large scale modeling and structural biology.
Yuan Pan is from Shenzhen, China and attended Hong Kong University of Science and Technology. She has conducted research on microtubule plus-end protein EB1 and will pursue her PhD in an area of fundamental biochemistry.
Nicole Vanderpool is from Mason City, Illinois and attended University of Illinois, Springfield. She conducted undergraduate research on the relationship between iron availability and nitrogen consumption in soil microbes. Going into graduate school, she has a strong interest in chromatin.
Om Kumar Shrestha is from Bharatpur, Nepal and attended Monmouth College, where he did NMR on enzymatic digestion of cellulosic biomass and engineered E. coli to resist ethanol. His interest in biochemistry was inspired by research mentors. He therefore wants to conduct research and continue the chain of mentorship to the next generation.
Zhen Xu is from Hefei, China and attended University of Science and Technology of China, where he did structural biology research. He enters graduate school with a strong interest in membrane proteins.
Chaoqun Zheng is from Beijing, China and attended Shanghai Jiaotong University, where he worked on C. elegans genomics. He enters graduate school with a strong interest in epigenetics, function of tumor suppressor genes, and metabolism.
Watch for the arrival of this class of graduate students this summer!