Fernandez Receives Arts and Sciences Dean’s Award

Tim150Timothy Fernandez (a member of Dr. Jamil Saad’s lab) was one of three undergraduate recipients of the College of the Arts and Sciences 2013 Dean’s Award. Students receiving this high honor represent the very best that UAB can achieve, says Dr. Catherine Daniélou, Senior Associate Dean for Undergraduate Academic Affairs.

The Dean’s Scholarship Award is a college-wide scholarship open to students currently enrolled in or admitted to a degree-granting program in the College of Arts and Sciences who have demonstrated solid academic promise and leadership qualities. Recipients must have at least an overall 3.0 grade point average.

Timothy has worked in Jamil Saad’s lab for three years and is a co-author on a JBC manuscript "Binding of calmodulin to the HIV-1 matrix protein triggers myristate exposure" and a review in Frontiers in Microbiology published last year. He will be recognized for this achievement at Honors Convocation on Tuesday, May 7th.

Lefkowitz Examines the Human Microbiome

Lefkowitz 2013Microbiology Professor Elliot Lefkowitz, Ph.D., is among several UAB researchers in multiple departments that have established a facility at UAB that provides the necessary expertise and resources to support microbiome research by UAB investigators. This research seeks to gain insight into the relationship between the presence of specific microbes and disease, and how various factors affect the overall composition of the microbiome. Dr. Lefkowitz directs the bioinformatics component of this facility that provides investigators with the resources and assistance necessary to evaluate the large amounts of data generated by microbiome analysis.  He describes some of the challenges involved in microbiome data analysis in a podcast on The Mix at UAB. The Winter 2013 edition of UAB Medicine explains UAB’s involvement in this work.

Graduate Student Receives IADR Travel Award

Garcia receives awardStephanie Garcia receives award from representative of Colgate-Palmolive CompanyStephanie Garcia (graduate student in Hui Wu’s lab) was one of only six students internationally to receive a 2013 IADR Colgate Research in Prevention travel award. The annual awards are divided regionally among North America (Canada, United States and Mexico), Latin America, Europe, Africa/Middle East, and Asian/Pacific region. This year’s awards were given to support young scientists’ attendance at the 91st General Session and Exhibition of the International Association for Dental Research in Seattle, Washington.

Dr. Wu’s lab, including Stephanie, Fan Zhu, Katherine Taylor, and Dr. Qiong Zhang (a visiting scientist from China) attended the meeting in March. They were able to meet and share information with scientists in the fields of dental, oral, and craniofacial research.

With nearly 12,800 members worldwide, the International Association for Dental Research (IADR) works to improve oral health by supporting the oral health research community in advancing research and facilitating the communication and application of research findings.

The IADR meeting was held in conjunction with the 42nd Annual Meeting of the American Association for Dental Research and the 37th Annual Meeting of the Canadian Association for Dental Research. The American Association for Dental Research (AADR) is the largest Division of IADR, with nearly 3,500 members in the United States. 

Two UAB Students Chosen for K-RITH Summer Program

Jennifer RowlandJennifer RowlandJennifer Rowland, graduate student in the Department of Microbiology, and Nicholas Eustace, first year MD/PHD program student, were selected for the prestigious K-RITH summer internship program. Jennifer, a student in the lab of Michael Niederweis, Ph.D., and Nicholas will work with Adrie Steyn, Ph.D., a UAB Microbiology faculty member who splits his time between K-RITH and UAB.

The global health initiative K-RITH (KwaZulu-Natal Research Institute for Tuberculosis and HIV) is an innovative collaboration between the Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) and the University of KwaZulu-Natal (UKZN), with public sector support through LifeLabs, the biotechnology investment arm of the South African government.

Nicholas EustaceNicholas EustaceStrategic
ally based in a region with a high volume of TB and HIV cases, K-RITH’s state-of-the-art laboratories enables scientists to address the crises of TB and HIV at the heart of the epidemic. The international program draws young scientists with a variety of expertise. Additionally, K-RITH is increasing regional science education opportunities and strengthening the research capabilities of scientists throughout Africa.

Jennifer and Nicholas will spend 8 to 12 weeks at K-RITH in Durban, South Africa, this coming summer. They, along with other students chosen from programs at Johns Hopkins University and Harvard, will have an opportunity to participate in HIV and TB-related research in the new state-of-the-art research facility at K-RITH. The K-RITH internship, awarded to Jennifer and Nicholas, is sponsored by the UAB Global Health and Vaccines Initiative, which received funds from the Dean of the School of Medicine at UAB for this important outreach. UAB is excited to partner with K-RITH in this exchange program and is looking forward to additional opportunities to foster cross-institutional collaborations.

Also featured in UAB School of Medicine News.

Microbiology Trainees Receive Graduate Student Research Days Awards


  
amber buelAmber Buel Amber Buel (mentors: Patrizia De Sarno, Ph.D. and Chander Raman, Ph.D.) and Jocelyn Hauser (mentor: Janet Yother) were honored on Friday, March 8, 2013, at the UAB Graduate School Awards Luncheon in the Bartow Arena Green and Gold Room. Buel’s presentation, “Lithium Controls Central Nervous System Autoimmunity through Modulation of IFN-γ Signaling,” received third place in Session 14, and Hauser’s presentation, “Modulation of Capsule Production in Streptococcus pneumoniae by SpxB and Hydrogen peroxide,” received third place in Session 11.

                                             
HauserJocelyn Hauser The annual UAB Graduate Student Research Day competition is open to all degree-seeking UAB graduate students enrolled during the semester in which the competition is held. Each participant is limited to 12 minutes for their presentation, with 3 additional minutes for questions from the judging panel. Judges include faculty and post-doctoral fellows, representing a diverse group of scholars. 

Micro Trainee Receives Sinkala Travel Award

Doornbos 2013Kathryn Doornbos, a graduate student in Dr. Michael Niederweis’s lab, is one of five graduate students to be awarded the 2013 Moses Sinkala Travel Scholarship.

“I'll be doing an 8-week collaboration with Wilbert Bitter at VU (Vrije Universiteit) in Amsterdam. Dr. Bitter has a well-established zebrafish embryo infection model for Mycobacterium marinum that enables detailed and rapid identification of phenotypes of mycobacterial mutants that would be difficult or impossible to observe in other animal models of mycobacterial diseases,” explains Doornbos.

Along with a monetary award, Doornbos will be honored at a luncheon on Monday, April 8th in UAB’s Edge of Chaos Atrium.

This prestigious travel award is presented by The Sparkman Center for Global Health to assist exemplary graduate and undergraduate students complete an international internship or research opportunity. To learn about the late Dr. Moses Sinkala, go to the UAB Sparkman Center for Global Health website.