posted on February 18, 2015

Professor James Bradeen, an MSI PI and Head of the Department of Plant Pathology (College of Food, Agricultural, and Natural Resource Sciences), is featured in a recent story by the Big Ten Network about the U’s preeminence in developing improved crops for the benefit of the world’s food supply. The story discusses the legacy of Norman Borlaug and the continuing work by U researchers in the field. Professor Bradeen uses MSI to support his genomics research into wild relatives of crop plants, with the goal of discovering the genes that provide these plants with defenses against disease. You can read the BTN story on their website

posted on February 16, 2015

Professor Marlene Zuk (Ecology, Evolution, and Behavior - College of Biological Sciences) has been named the 2015 winner of the EO Wilson Naturalist Award from the American Society of Naturalists. Professor Zuk is being recognized for her research into the mating behavior of invertebrates as well as for her science writing for the public. She uses MSI resources to support her genetics research; her current work at MSI involves studies of genetic mutations in Pacific field crickets. See more about Professor Zuk and this award on the CBS Connect blog.


posted on February 13, 2015

Professor Michael Tsapatsis (Chemical Engineering and Materials Science - College of Science and Engineering [CSE]) has been elected to the National Academy of Engineering. This is one of the highest honors that can be awarded to an engineer. Professor Tsapatsis is being recognized for his work in the design and development of zeolites, which are specialized nanomaterials with applications in industry. Some of this research uses MSI resources (Tsapatsis group's current MSI project). More information can be found on the U’s Discover blog and on the CSE website.

posted on February 11, 2015

Regents Professor David Tilman (Ecology, Evolution, and Behavior; College of Biological Sciences) has received the BBVA Foundation Frontiers of Knowledge Award for Ecology and Conservation Biology. This international award is given in recognition of his groundbreaking research, which shows the value of biodiversity to the health of the world’s ecosystems. Professor Tilman is the director of the Cedar Creek Ecosystem Science Reserve (CCESR), an ecological research site. MSI has been working with the CCESR for several years to host an online database that houses the data generated and makes it available to other researchers and the public. Professor Tilman also won the Balzan Prize in 2014.

Read more about this award:


posted on February 9, 2015

MSI PI Allison Hubel, a professor of mechanical engineering (College of Science and Engineering), has developed technology that is the basis for start-up company MesoFlow. The company manufactures devices that remove preservation chemicals from stored cells, such as blood cells and stem cells, before they are used. This technology improves on older methods, which often resulted in large numbers of damaged or lost cells when the preserving agent was removed in a labor-intensive procedure by a highly trained technician. This new procedure requires less skill to operate, is more efficient at removing preservation chemicals, and lowers the cost of equipment needed to prepare cells for use.

Professor Hubel uses MSI resources to as part of a project to find alternative cell-preservations substances to replace dimethylsulfoxide, which is a very common preservation agent, but which is not suitable for all applications. Several naturally occurring molecules may be suitable, and Professor Hubel’s group is performing molecular dynamics simulations on these compounds to study their action mechanisms.

A profile of MesoFlow appears on the OVPR’s Inquiry blog.