Accomplishments: School of Life Sciences

March 27, 2020
Several faculty and staff members recently were recognized by the College of Sciences with the following awards: Distinguished Classified Staff Award Rychelle Tomlin, College of Sciences   Distinguished Professional Staff Award Martha Schumacher, College of Sciences   Distinguished Researcher Award Balakrishnan Naduvalath, Chemistry and Biochemistry   Distinguished Teaching Award Wanda Taylor, Geoscience   Distinguished Service Award Helen Wing, Life Sciences
March 25, 2020
Laurel Raftery (Life Sciences), along with Juan Carlos Duhart, '18 PhD Biology, authored a paper just published in Frontiers in Cell and Developmental Biology. "Mob Family Proteins: Regulatory Partners in Hippo and Hippo-Like Intracellular Signaling Pathways" is adapted from Duhart's doctoral dissertation. He is now a post-doctoral fellow in the department of neuroscience at Jefferson University.
March 20, 2020
Francisco Valenzuela (Life Sciences) a senior biology pre-professional student, recently was awarded the 2020 Student Service Award from the UNLV office of community engagement. Among other activities, Valenzuela's service includes organizing a sock and underwear drive for The Shade Tree, a shelter for homeless and abused women and children in crisis; establishing a partnership and program with the Boys and Girls Club of Las Vegas; serving as the humanitarian chair of the UNLV Predental Society...
March 19, 2020
Helen J. Wing and Joy McKenna (both Life Sciences) have published a primary research article, "The Anti-Activator of Type III Secretion, OspD1, is Transcriptionally Regulated by VirB and H-NS from Remote Sequences in Shigella Flexneri," in a recent edition of the Journal of Bacteriology (ASM Journal). Their work reveals that transcriptional control of virulence genes in the human pathogen Shigella flexneri can occur from remotely located DNA sites. Their findings raise the possibility that long...
March 18, 2020
Cornelia Fanter (Life Sciences) received a coveted National Science Foundation Postdoctoral Fellowship in Biology. Fanter is working with assistant professor Allyson Hindle and her proposal was titled, "What Makes a Mammalian Hibernator? Evaluating the Evolution and Mechanisms of Metabolic Depression as an Ancestral Trait." She was funded through the Rules of Life mechanism.
February 21, 2020
Elizabeth Stacy (Life Sciences) and a large team of evolutionary biologists led by Rosemary Gillespie (University of California Berkeley) published a review article, Comparing Adaptive Radiations Across Space, Time, and Taxa in the Journal of Heredity.  This paper reviews adaptive radiations across the globe to uncover commonalities and contrasts and to identify priorities for future research.  The results provide insights into the external (environment) and internal (genetic) conditions that...
January 10, 2020
Eduardo Robleto (Life Sciences) is the new program director INBRE program. His responsibilities are to oversee the INBRE-sponsored faculty research and undergraduate research components of the grant, which covers all NSHE institutions in Nevada. The annual direct budget he will manage directly is approximately $400,000.  Nevada INBRE is part of the IDeA Network of Biomedical Research Excellence, and is a National Institutes of Health program designed to help traditionally underfunded states...
December 20, 2019
Kelly Tseng (Life Sciences) was an invited speaker at the 2019 Annual Biomedical Research Conference for Minority Students in Anaheim, California. Her talk, "A Lot of Nerve! Evolutionary Mechanisms of Neural Regeneration," presented her laboratory group's recent research studies on vertebrate eye regeneration. 
December 12, 2019
Elizabeth Stacy (Life Sciences) and collaborators Michael Purugganan and Jae Young Choi (New York University) published a paper in Molecular Biology and Evolution, "Divergent Selection and Primary Gene Flow Shape Incipient Speciation of a Riparian Tree on Hawaii Island."  This work uses population genomics approaches to uncover the evolutionary history of a tree endemic to the rivers on east Hawaii Island and concludes that this taxon is a rare example of incipient sympatric speciation in trees...
December 11, 2019
Cindy Kha, Dylan Guerin, and Kelly Tseng (Life Sciences) published a book chapter, "Studying In Vivo Retinal Progenitor Cell Proliferation in Xenopus laevis" in Retinal Development: Methods and Protocols." This is part of the highly successful Methods in Molecular Biology book series published since 1983. The work from Kha, Guerin, and Tseng describes a novel system for generating new retinal stem cells to repair eye injuries in an animal model. Kha (a recipient of UNLV Summer Doctoral research...
December 9, 2019
Jenna Heath (Liberal Arts) and Kathryn Raffety (Life Sciences) recently received fall 2019 Academic Assessment Mini-Grants through the office of academic assessment. Health and the College of Liberal Arts received the award for “College of Liberal Arts Student Success Through Service Learning Pilot Project,” an ambitious, faculty-driven service-learning project that builds on an existing service-learning program fostering academic and professional development through community engagement, and...
November 27, 2019
Sheniz Moonie, Brian Labus (both Environmental and Occupational Health), and Dr. Rebecca Scherr (Medicine), along with Julia Anderson, '19 PhD Public Health, and former faculty member Mary Beth Hogan (now of Marshall University) recently published an article on "Chronic Inflammatory Disease Cost: The Impact of Eosinophilic Esophagitis in Nevada" in the Journal of Digestive Diseases.  This study seeks to fill this gap by comparing the cost of eosinophilic esophagitis to other well‐known...