News

MSI PI Michael Kyba (professor, Pediatrics and Stem Cell Institute) and colleagues have published a study in which the researchers were able to harvest cells from a benign type of tumor called a teratoma and purify some of them so that they can rebuild skeletal muscle in mice with muscular dystrophy. This research shows promise for generating cells that can be used for research.
The Masonic Cancer Center has received an “outstanding” rating from the National Cancer Institute, an improvement over its previous rating of “excellent.” They have also received an extension to their Cancer Center Support Grant and received reconfirmation of their status as a comprehensive center.
Three MSI PIs are among the co-authors of a newly published paper that describes a 3D-printed device that could someday help repair some spinal cord injuries. A silicon guide is used as a platform for neuronal stem cells to be 3D printed on it. The guide is then implanted into a spine’s injured area, where researchers hope that it will act as a bridge between the cells above and below the injury. This might allow patients to recover some function. The paper was published in the journal Advanced Functional Materials. The PIs involved in the research are:
MSI PI Jian-Ping Wang (Electrical and Computer Engineering) is the lead on a team that has been awarded a four-year, $3.1 million grant from the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) to create new electronics capabilities. The team will work on improving Magnetic Tunnel Junctions, nanostructured thin film devices that can improve hard drives, sensors, and other electronics.
MSI PI John Bischof has been named Director of the Institute for Engineering in Medicine (IEM). Professor Bischof has been the Interim Director for the past year. He is a faculty member in the Departments of Mechanical Engineering and Biomedical Engineering, and is also a member of the Masonic Cancer Center. His current work using MSI involves the use of iron oxide and gold nanoparticles to enhance thermal therapies.
MSI PI Lauren Linderman (assistant professor, Civil, Environmental, and Geo- Engineering) was interviewed recently about a project to monitor the I-35W bridge. The bridge, which replaced the one that collapsed 11 years ago last week, contains numerous sensors that provide data to researchers studying how the bridge is responding to stresses, with a goal of making bridges safer.
MSI PI Pinar Karaca Mandic, an associate professor in the Department of Finance, Carlson School of Management, and Academic Director of the Medical Industry Leadership Institute, participated in a show on Minnesota Public Radio about drug prices and the role government should take in their control.
MSI PI Jia-Liang Le, an associate professor in the Department of Civil, Environmental, and Geo- Engineering, will begin research into a new material that may provide better protection in nuclear power plants. The material, silicon carbide matrix composite, has shown promise as a cladding material to surround fuel rods and shield them from the coolant water. Preliminary studies have shown that this material could be a better barrier than zirconium alloy, which is currently used.
On Wednesday, August 1, 2018, MSI staff will perform scheduled maintenance and upgrades to various MSI systems. Primary Storage, Mesabi, and Itasca will be unavailable throughout much of the day. A global system reservation will start at 6:00 am on August 1. Jobs that cannot be completed before 6:00 am on August 1 will be held until after maintenance and then started once the system returns to production status. August maintenance will include:
Researchers from U-Spatial spoke at the recent 2018 Esri User Conference, an international meeting of experts in mapping and geographic information systems (GIS).
MSI PI Molly McCue (associate professor, Veterinary Population Medicine) was interviewed by radio station KFGO in Fargo-Moorhead recently to discuss her lab’s research into the genetics of Equine Metabolic Syndrome.
MSI PI Melania Figueroa (Plant Pathology) was recently awarded the 2018 Syngenta Award from the American Phytopathological Society. This award is presented for outstanding contributions to teaching, research, or extension in plant pathology.
The Raptor Center, part of the College of Veterinary Medicine on the St. Paul Campus, has seen a record number of eaglets so far in 2018. The Center rehabilitates injured raptors for re-release into the wild. TV station Kare-11 did a story about the rehabilitation process, which can be seen on their website: Raptor Center works to help record number of eaglets.
The Inorganic Catalyst Design Center, a federally funded Energy Frontier Research Center (EFRC) in the College of Science and Engineering, had its funding renewed in late June 2018. The purpose of the EFRCs is to strengthen US economic leadership and energy security. The Inorganic Catalyst Design Center’s mission is to discover new classes of catalytic materials for energy production, especially using computational methods.
MSI researcher Pajau Vangay, a PhD student in the lab of MSI PI Dan Knights (Computer Science and Engineering; BioTechnology Institute), was featured in a story on Public Radio International (PRI). The story discusses Ms. Vangay’s research into the microbiome and work on the Immigrant Microbiome Project, which studies Hmong and Karen women in Minnesota and Thailand.
U-Spatial has named the winners for their 2018 Mapping Prizes. This annual event, which is open to students at the University of Minnesota, honors provocative and innovative map-making. See the winners on the U-Spatial website: Mapping Prize - 2018 Best Maps.
Six MSI PIs have received awards from the 2018 Research Infrastructure Investment Program. This Office of the Vice President for Research (OVPR) program is designed to support transdisciplinary research and collaboration across the U. OVPR made 19 awards this year. Below are the MSI PIs who have received awards:
Two MSI PIs have been named Regents Professors, the University’s highest level of faculty recognition.
MSI PI Kathryn Bushley (assistant professor, Plant and Microbial Biology) is featured on the College of Biological Sciences (CBS) website for her research that seeks to fight a soybean-destroying roundworm. The soybean-cyst nematode is highly damaging to Minnesota’s soybean crop. The Bushley lab is investigating the use of naturally occurring fungi as a method of fighting these nematodes.
MSI PI Fumiaki Katagiri (professor, Plant and Microbial Biology) was recently interviewed on the College of Biological Sciences (CBS) website. The interview discusses Professor Katagiri’s research, family, and interests. It can be found on the CBS Connect blog: CBSpotlight: Fumiaki Katagiri. Professor Katagiri uses MSI to support research into plants’ immune systems.