Recommended: Roger Hanlon, Ph.D.

Friday Lecture Series

Fairfield Osborne Memorial Lecture

Rapid Adaptive Camouflage and Signaling in Cephalopods: Linking Sensors and Effectors to Behavioral Ecology

Roger Hanlon, Ph.D., senior scientist,

Marine Biological Laboratory

December 16,  2011

3:45 p.m.-5:00 p.m. (Refreshments, 3:15 p.m., Abby Lounge)

Caspary Auditorium

Recommended Readings:

Hanlon, R. 2007. Cephalopod dynamic camouflage. Current Biology 17, (11): R400-R404

Hanlon, R. T., S. A. Ament, and H. Gabr. 1999. Behavioral aspects of sperm competition in cuttlefish, sepia officinalis (sepioidea: Cephalopoda). Marine Biology 134, (4): 719-728

Hanlon, R. T., C. -C Chiao, L. M. Mäthger, A. Barbosa, K. C. Buresch, and C. Chubb. 2009. Cephalopod dynamic camouflage: Bridging the continuum between background matching and disruptive coloration. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences 364, (1516): 429-437

Mäthger, L. M., E. J. Denton, N. J. Marshall, and R. T. Hanlon. 2009. Mechanisms and behavioural functions of structural coloration in cephalopods. Journal of the Royal Society Interface 6, (SUPPL. 2): S149-S163

Naud, M. -J, R. T. Hanlon, K. C. Hall, P. W. Shaw, and J. N. Havenhand. 2004. Behavioural and genetic assessment of reproductive success in a spawning aggregation of the australian giant cuttlefish, sepia apama. Animal Behaviour 67, (6): 1043-1050

Project To Develop Metagenomics Tool For Rapid Identification of Microbes

 Battelle Memorial Institute (Columbus, Ohio) announced that it has made an investment of an undisclosed amount in CosmosID for the development of a metagenomics software-based solution for microbial identification.

The investment from Battelle is part of $4 million in financing that CosmosID recently received to support its efforts “to deliver pathogen identification in a single, rapid, and accurate service,” Battelle said, adding that it is partnering with the College Park, Md.-based company to develop and market microbial metagenomics toolkits for public safety and medical treatment applications.

CosmosID’s technology called MetaSeq Genomics uses unassembled reads from next-generation sequencing, probabilistic algorithms, and reference databases to identify pathogens, and antibiotic resistance and virulence factors. The software, which is scalable and updated iteratively, is targeted for diagnostic test development in the markets of public safety and security, medical treatment, environmental monitoring, and drug development, Battelle said.

Privately held CosmosID was founded in 2007 by Rita Colwell, former director of the US National Science Foundation and currently distinguished professor at Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health and the University of Maryland.

Mild Fever Enhances Effectiveness of CD8+ T-cells

Scientists have found that the generation and differentiation of CD8+ cytotoxic T-cell is enhanced by mild fever-range hyperthermia. Specifically, their research suggests that elevated body temperature changes the T-cells’ membranes which may help mediate the effects of micro-environmental temperature on cell function. To test this, researchers injected two groups of mice with an antigen, and examined the activation of T-cells following the interaction with antigen presenting cells. Body temperature in half of the mice was raised by 2 degrees centigrade, while the other half maintained a normal core body temperature. In the warmed mice, results showed a greater number of the type of CD8 T-cells capable of destroying infected cells. Read more in the Journal of Leukocyte Biology.

Recommended Readings: Wayne Hendrickson, Ph.D.

Friday Lecture Series

Structural Analysis of SLAC1-family Anion Channel Activity

Wayne Hendrickson, Ph.D.,

professor, department of biochemistry and molecular biophysics,

Columbia University

December 9,  2011

3:45 p.m.-5:00 p.m. (Refreshments, 3:15 p.m., Abby Lounge)

Caspary Auditorium

Recommended Readings:

Chen, Y. -H, L. Hu, M. Punta, R. Bruni, B. Hillerich, B. Kloss, B. Rost, J. Love, S. A. Siegelbaum, and W. A. Hendrickson. 2010. Homologue structure of the SLAC1 anion channel for closing stomata in leaves. Nature 467, (7319): 1074-1080

Mancia, F., and W. A. Hendrickson. 2007. Expression of recombinant G-protein coupled receptors for structural biology. Molecular BioSystems 3, (10): 723-734

Williams, J. C., P. L. Roulhac, A. G. Roy, R. B. Vallee, M. C. Fitzgerald, and W. A. Hendrickson. 2007. Structural and thermodynamic characterization of a cytoplasmic dynein light chain-intermediate chain complex. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 104, (24): 10028-10033

Williams, J. C., H. Xie, and W. A. Hendrickson. 2005. Crystal structure of dynein light chain TcTex-1. Journal of Biological Chemistry 280, (23): 21981-21986

Natural Dye Obtained from Lichens May Combat Alzheimer’s Disease

A red dye derived from lichens that has been used for centuries to color fabrics and food appears to reduce the abundance of small toxic protein aggregates in Alzheimer’s disease. The dye, a compound called orcein, and a related substance, called O4, bind preferentially to small amyloid aggregates that are considered to be toxic and cause neuronal dysfunction and memory impairment in Alzheimer’s disease. O4 binding to small aggregates promotes their conversion into large, mature plaques which researchers assume to be largely non-toxic for neuronal cells.  Read  the full story in NATURE CHEMICAL BIOLOGY.