Past News & Announcements

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6th Annual Life Sciences Graduate Research Symposium

September 2016: The 6th Annual Life Sciences Graduate Research Symposium will be held on Friday, December 2, 2016, from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. The event will feature research talks throughout the day and a poster session from 12:30 to 2:00 p.m.

After-School Science Club Studies Bacteria on Apples

September 2016: Seventh grade students in Amherst Regional Middle School's after-school science club recently studied apples and the method their cafeteria uses to handle and prepare the apples for school lunches. For more than four months students collected data and preliminary findings showed that washing and refrigerating apples is the best way to reduce bacteria. The cafeteria workers' method of preparing the fruit was to wash each apple and place them in individual plastic bags. Yasu Morita, Assistant Professor of Microbiology, and Anastasia Naritsin, and undergraduate researcher, provided the students with guidance in lifting bacteria from the apples and placing it on to petri plates to monitor the growth of bacteria and additionally determine what types of apples had more bacteria. Read more...

DeAngelis Awarded Department of Energy Grants

September 2016: Kristen DeAngelis, Assistant Professor in Microbiology, has been awarded two grants from the Department of Energy to study microbial feedbacks to climate in a warming world. The first is a three-year award from the DOE Genomic Sciences (GS) Program, entitled "The Who and How of Microbial Control over Soil Carbon Dynamics: a Multi–omics, Stable Isotope, and Modeling Approach.” The second is a two-year award from the DOE Terrestrial Ecosystem Sciences (TES) Program, entitled "Resolving Conflicting Physical and Biochemical Feedbacks to Climate in Response to Long-Term Warming". These complementary projects both examine microbial carbon use efficiency and availability as possible sources of climate-altered feedbacks to warming, by studying Harvard Forest soils exposed to 25 years of warming along with bacterial and fungal culture collections from these soils. Dr. DeAngelis is the PI for both, with co-investigators at UMass, Hampshire College, UNH, Argonne National Lab, and Marine Biological Labs. 

Hamilton Promoted to Senior Lecturer II

August 2016: Dr. Erika Hamilton, Lecturer and Director of Microbiology Teaching Services, has been promoted to Senior Lecturer II effective September 1, 2016. 

Morita Awarded American Lung Association Grant

August 2016:  Yasu Morita, Assistant Professor of Microbiology, has been awarded a one year grant from the American Lung Association for his research project "Cell wall biogenesis in Mycobacterium tuberculosis: towards identifying druggable cell envelope."