April 2015 News

Dr. Josie Chandler Josie Chandler (assistant professor) is the recipient of a Research Project Award from the Center for Molecular Analysis of Disease Pathways (CMADP) NIH Center for Biomedical Research Excellence (COBRE) for her proposal entitled “A non-canonical quorum sensing regulator of virulence in Burkholderia pseudomallei.”  The goal of this work is to understand the regulatory pathway that controls virulence factor expression in the human pathogen Burkholderia pseudomallei.



Dr. Wonpil ImWonpil Im (associate professor) is the recipient of a University Scholarly Achievement Award recognizing research impact of major significance in science, technology, and mathematics at the University of Kansas.




Kathy MeneelyKathy Meneely (research associate, Lamb lab) is the recipient of a travel award from the KU Postdoctoral Association to attend and present a poster at the 35th Midwest Enzyme Chemistry Conference on September 12 in Chicago.



Rana AlianiRana Aliani (undergraduate, Lundquist Lab) was selected as a K-INBRE Undergraduate Scholar for Spring and Summer of 2015.  Rana’s will study the role of the Neurofibromatosis type II protein NFM-1 in neuronal migration.



Kyle MonizeKyle Monize (undergraduate, Chandler Lab) was selected as a K-INBRE Undergraduate Scholar for Spring and Summer of 2015.  Kyle's work will support efforts to understand how a virulence regulator becomes activated in the human pathogen Burkholderia pseudomallei.



Daniel PhamDaniel Pham (undergraduate, Xu lab) is a recipient of a 2015 KU Cancer Center Summer Student Research Training Award for his proposal entitled “Molecular cancer therapy targeting RNA binding protein Musashi-1.”  Daniel will work and train in the lab of Liang Xu under the mentorship of postdoctoral fellow Lan Lan from June 1 - July 24.  He will also have the opportunity to present a poster on his project at the annual KUCC Research Symposium to be held November 13-14 at the KU Edwards campus.



Jessica van Loben SelsJessica van Loben Sels (undergraduate, Davido Lab) was selected as a K-INBRE Undergraduate Scholar for Spring and Summer of 2015.  Her award will support work to understand how the herpes simplex virus 1 (HSV-1) protein ICP0 counteracts cellular defenses to stimulate viral replication.




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April 2015 Presentations

David Davido (associate professor) gave two presentations in Europe. The first was entitled “Taking Control of the HSV-1 life cycle: role of viral and host factors” to members of the intrinsic and innate immunity research groups at the MRC-University of Glasgow Centre for Virus Research on February 23 in Glasgow, United Kingdom.  He also gave a similarly titled presentation at the Free University (Freie Universitaet) Berlin on March 2 in Berlin, Germany.

Kristi Neufeld (associate professor) gave a presentation entitled “Deciphering the cancer puzzle: Exploring the functions of colon tumor suppressor APC” for the Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) Departments at MidAmerica Nazarene University, Olathe, KS on March 13.

Erik Lundquist (professor) gave a seminar presentation entitled “Using the Model Organism Nematode Worm C. elegans To Understand Nervous System Development at Southwestern Oklahoma State University, Department of Biology on March 10.

Berl Oakley (Irving S. Johnson Distinguished Professor of Molecular Biology) gave a plenary session talk entitled “γ-Tubulin: a Multifunctional Cell Organizer” on March 19 at the 28th Fungal Genetics Conference at Pacific Grove (Asilomar) California.

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April 2015 Publications

Mostafa HH, van Loben Sels JM, Davido DJ. HSV-1 upregulates p35, alters CDK-5 localization, and stimulates CDK-5 kinase activity during acute infection in neurons. J Virol. 2015 Feb 18. pii: JVI.00106-15.

Rowland MA, Harrison B, Deeds EJPhosphatase specificity and pathway insulation in signaling networks.  Biophys J. 108(4): 986-96.

Wani PS, Rowland MA, Ondracek A, Deeds EJ, Roelofs J.  Maturation of the proteasome core particle induces an affinity switch that controls regulatory particle association. Nat Commun. 6: 6384-95.

Wu X, Lan L, Wilson DM, Marquez RT, Tsao W-C, Gao P, Roy A, Turner B, McDonald P, Tunge JA, Rogers SA, Dixon DA, Aube J, and Xu L. Identification and validation of novel small molecule disruptors of HuR-mRNA interaction. ACS Chem Biol 2015 [Epub ahead of print]

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Molecular Biosciences

We are an interdisciplinary group of faculty who perform cutting edge research in a wide range of areas including biochemistry, biophysics, structural biology, bioinformatics, cancer biology, genetics, genomics, immunology, microbiology, virology, neurobiology, molecular, cellular and developmental biology.  We work closely with postdoctoral fellows, graduate students, and undergraduates to investigate fundamental biological problems on all levels from molecules to cells to organisms.  The Department of Molecular Biosciences, located on the Lawrence campus of the University of Kansas system, is an excellent environment for research and education.

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Here is a post from CLAS about one of our graduate students, Sonia Hall
University of Kansas College of Liberal Arts and Sciences
On Monday, doctoral biology student Sonia Hall appeared before Congress to advocate for increased scientific funding and strengthened policies that promote research and training for early career scientists. "The opportunity to be an active participant in these discussions, which are critical to the success of our field, was such a privilege. Being surrounded by leaders from the University of Kansas, the Genetics Society of America and FASEB was very enlightening and provided further evidence that trainees are an important part of not only the future of research but also the present." - Sonia