Yeast study reveals novel regulators of cell division

Ever think back to the time when you were just a single cell? Probably not. But consider the fact that your adult body is composed of upwards of 37 trillion cells!  While we may take for granted this astounding accomplishment, it’s no small feat. How does a human embryo go from one cell to 37 trillion cells? Well, simple as it may sound, that first cell makes copies of itself and each of those new cells follows in turn to build a living, breathing human being.

Avena fig 1
A cell duplicates its contents, including its DNA (orange X’s) and centrosomes
 (red boxes) and divides them equally between two daughter cells. 
DNA is partitioned using a spindle apparatus (red boxes and blue lines).

Continue reading “Yeast study reveals novel regulators of cell division”

Graduate Student Snapshot: Shalaya Kipp

Shalaya Kipp 14th IAAF World Athletics Championships h0uLZjcs5vVl

Graduate school is a balancing act for most of us. We all have to juggle coursework, research, teaching, and perhaps some semblance of a social life. For Shalaya Kipp, a 1st year Integrative Physiology graduate student in Dr. Rodger Kram’s locomotion lab, this delicate balance consists of fulfilling graduate school responsibilities while training as a professional athlete.

Continue reading “Graduate Student Snapshot: Shalaya Kipp”

Avoiding the Measles 101: Understanding how vaccines and herd immunity protect us


If you’ve been paying attention to the news of late, you’re probably aware of the recent measles outbreak spreading across the country.  Everyone’s talking about it—even the president.  Most children have been vaccinated against measles and other deadly diseases, but those who haven’t are at risk of contracting the disease.  It has been well established that vaccination is the best way to prevent illnesses, and even to eradicate diseases (think polio in the US and smallpox world-wide.)  In fact, President Obama said in a recent speech that the science behind vaccination is “pretty indisputable.”  But what is the science behind vaccines, and why do they work?

Continue reading “Avoiding the Measles 101: Understanding how vaccines and herd immunity protect us”

Graduate Student Snapshot: Kika Tarsi

Kika Tarsi

Be warned: after you finish reading this Snapshot you will probably feel the sudden need to explore your right-brained side. I definitely came away from my interview with Kika Tarsi with a commitment to try something new and artistic. Kika, a 5th year graduate student in the Ecology and Evolutionary Biology Department, has more interesting hobbies then you can shake a stick at, and beautiful photos to back up her commitment to design and artistry.

Continue reading “Graduate Student Snapshot: Kika Tarsi”