Research Excellence

NSF Grant Helps Professor Connect Evolutionary Dots along the Open Tree of Life

UC Merced life and environmental sciences Professor Emily Jane McTavish and a collaborator at the University of Kansas recently received a $1.4 million grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF) to extend and improve the Open Tree of Life (OpenTree).

$2.5M Grant Will Help Professor to Build a Powerful Molecular Imaging Scanner

Bioengineering Professor Changqing Li was recently awarded a four-year, $2.5 million R01 grant from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to help develop a focused X-ray luminescence tomography (FXLT) scanner that could accelerate cancer research.

The scanner is a first-of-its kind molecular imaging tool that will allow researchers to visualize how disease progresses and monitor the effectiveness of novel drug-delivery systems in live animals — without invasive surgeries or euthanizing the animals.

Study: Snacking on Almonds a Healthy Alternative for Breakfast-Skipping Students

Independence: It’s what many students value most about the transition to college life. But the freedom to make decisions without interference from parents can lead to unhealthy eating habits.

CAREER Award Will Help Professor Predict How Species Respond to Climate Change

Paleoecology Professor Jessica Blois recently became the campus’s 19th recipient of the National Science Foundation (NSF) Faculty Early Career Development Program (CAREER) award.

The NSF describes as the CAREER as its “most prestigious award in support of early-career faculty who have the potential to serve as academic role models in research and education and to lead advances in the mission of their organizations.”

The award provides Blois with $782,449 over the next five years to pursue an agenda that includes research and outreach.

Misbehaving “Killer” Cells Accelerate Progress of Autoimmune Disease

In 1998, scientists studying rheumatoid arthritis observed a population of immune cells that weren’t behaving the way they were supposed to. Immunologists noted the strange phenomenon, but decided not to pursue the subject further, and the cells were soon forgotten.

But interest in these cells has swelled over the past few years as they’ve been found in patients with chronic viral infections and cancer.

Following a Devastating Pandemic, California’s Sea Stars are Evolving

In 2012, Environmental Systems graduate student Lauren Schiebelhut was collecting DNA from ochre sea stars living along the Northern California coast — part of an effort to study genetic diversity in various marine species that serve as indicators of habitat health. She had no idea that just one year later, most of the sea stars would be dead.

Study Finds That Gene Transcription Can Serve as Brain’s Timekeeper

Neurons keep time. These brain cells – which are responsible for the brain’s “heavy lifting,” from information processing to memory formation – seem to "know" how long they’ve been exposed to sensory stimulation. Now, scientists are starting to understand how they do this.

Students Discover Cannibal Lizards on Remote Aegean Island

It reads like a mashup of Greek mythology and H.G. Wells. “The Odyssey of Doctor Moreau,” perhaps. Explorers find their way to a remote Aegean island and discover it’s inhabited by reptilian cannibals. They describe one encounter as follows:

“[I]t began to run away, with the dead lizard torso and head still in its mouth. The cannibal continuously ran along the top of a wall and paused intermittently to thrash the corpse against the cement.”

A Fruit Fly Walks Into a Bar ...

Editor’s note: Every year UC Merced shines a spotlight on the cutting-edge research underway at the university. Research Week is an opportunity for the public to explore the groundbreaking work conducted by students and faculty. As part of Research Week, the Newsroom will highlight a few of these ongoing efforts. Tune in for new research stories all week long.

Humans aren’t the only species with a well-developed drinking culture. The social life of the humble fruit fly also revolves around alcohol.

Pages

Subscribe to RSS - Research Excellence

Contact Us

Graduate Admissions:
Phone: (209) 228-4723
 
Graduate Funding:
Phone: (209) 228-4622
 
General Inquiries:
Phone: (209) 228-4723
Fax: (209) 228-6906
 
Mailing Address:
University of California, Merced
ATTN: Graduate Division
5200 N. Lake Road, Ste KL 227
Merced, CA 95343
University of California, Merced
 
The first new American research
university in the 21st century, with a
mission of research, teaching and service.
 
University of California, Merced
5200 North Lake Road
Merced, CA 95343
T: (209) 228-4400
 
University of California
Go to top