Two MSI PIs, Daniel Bond and Jeffrey Gralnick, were recently highlighted in a UMNews feature story. The two are both associate professors in the Department of Microbiology and are also members of the BioTechnology Institute. They study metal-reducing and metal-oxidizing bacteria. These bacteria can change the properties of metals via a process of electron transfer.


Both Professor Bond and Professor Gralnick use MSI resources to perform gene sequencing in the bacteria they are studying. This helps them to define the genes involved in the microbial metabolic process.


Three MSI PIs are featured in a recent UMNews article about research in the emerging field of nanomedicine. The PIs are Professor John Bischof (Mechanical Engineering), Associate Professor Christy Haynes (Chemistry), and Associate Professor Sang-Hyun Oh (Electrical and Computer Engineering).


Professors Bischof and Haynes and their colleague Professor Michael Garwood of the radiology department are working on a system to use iron-oxide nanoparticles to destroy cancer tumors with heat. Professor Bischof uses MSI for a number of projects involving biological systems. His work specific to this tumor-fighting project involves modeling heat transfer around nanoparticles. Professor Haynes uses MSI to study the immune system at the cellular level. This involves microfluidics research that requires powerful computational resources to study the fluid dynamics of the systems considered.


Professor Oh’s group uses MSI as part of research to develop metallic nanostructures. One application for these nanostructures is as sensors to study how proteins interact with molecules, which is part of the process used in developing new drugs. The Oh group is working with researchers at the Mayo Clinic who plan to use this method to test a possible treatment for multiple sclerosis (MS).


Professor Gunda Georg (Medicinal Chemistry) will receive the Volwiler Research Achievement Award from the American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy (AACP) for her outstanding research and contributions to the field of synthetic medicinal chemistry. The award will be presented at the AACP Annual Meeting in Chicago, Illinois in July. An article about this award appeared last week in the Wall Street Journal,  which was included in the April 30, 2013 “U in the News” summary on the University’s website.


Professor Georg is the Director of the Institute for Therapeutics Discovery and Design and is Head of the Department of Medicinal Chemistry. She and other faculty at the ITDD use MSI resources for their cutting-edge drug-discovery and development research.


Update, 5/7/13: An article about Professor Georg appears in the Minnesota Daily.


The OVPR’s Research blog recently posted an article about the University Imaging Centers. MSI collaborates with the Imaging Centers to store their enormous data files.


The article describes some of the Imaging Centers’ projects and includes some stunning pictures created with their high-powered imaging equipment.


Professor Renata Wentzcovitch (MSI Fellow; Chemical Engineering and Materials Science) has been named to the prestigious American Academy of Arts and Sciences. She is one of 198 newly elected members of the Academy who will be inducted in October 2013. More details can be found on the University News site.


Professor Wentzcovitch has been a Principal Investigator at MSI for many years and has been a Fellow since 2001. She and her research group are investigating problems in the area of computational mineral physics. They use MSI resources for the large-scale, first-principles calculations involved in studies of the magnetic, thermodynamics, and thermal-elastic properties of solids, primarily minerals. The group is also involved in developing software that can be used for distributed computing on the internet.