CA&ES Currents Newsletter  icon newspaper

November 03, 2000

Jun 05, 2014 admin

James Carey and Paul Gepts Elected AAAS Fellows

Professor James Carey, Department of Entomology, and professor and chair Paul Gepts, Department of Agronomy and Range Science, were elected fellows in the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), along with three professors from the Division of Biological Sciences (DBS). Carey was selected for distinguished contributions to the field of biodemography and invasion biology. His areas of research include invasion biology; Mediterranean fruit fly invasion of California; mortality dynamics of insects; aging, longevity and life-span limits. Gepts was honored for research and teaching on the genetic structure, evolution and domestication of plants, especially the common bean. His research focuses on the genetics of food legumes: crop evolution; genetic conservation; genome mapping; and molecular evolution. AAAS represents the world's largest federation of scientists and works to advance science for human well being through its projects, programs and publications. AAAS publishes the prestigious peer-reviewed journal Science as well as a number of electronic features on the Web. DBS molecular and cellular biology professors elected are section chair Michael Dahmus, Carl Schmid and Irwin Segel. Dahmus was honored for his studies on the mechanism of regulation of gene expression; Schmid was elected for his reserarch in molecular genetics; and Segal was selected for his research on the enzymes of inorganic sulfate metabolism and for his two books, "Enzyme Kinetics" and "Biochemical Calculations."

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Andrew Waterhouse Selected Chancellor's Fellow
Professor Andrew Waterhouse, Department of Viticulture and Enology, was selected a 2000-01 Chancellor's Fellow and will be honored at a reception hosted by Chancellor Larry Vanderhoef in December. Waterhouse was recognized for "demonstrated excellence in academic pursuits evidenced by his quality and significance of research and teaching." The Chancellor's Fellows Program was established to honor the achievements of outstanding faculty members early in their careers. Funds from the Davis Chancellor's Club and the annual fund of the University of California, Davis, support the program. "Andy is a tremendous scientist, and his work in wine chemistry and wine composition and human health has been groundbreaking," said professor and department chair James Wolpert. "He truly has put us on the map with that particular area of research. Andy has been one of the leaders of our program. He is a great campus citizen and department citizen. We think very highly of Andy and are happy to see him recognized as a Chancellor's Fellow." Waterhouse is vice chair of the Department of Viticulture and Enology and previously served as chair of the Agricultural Chemistry Graduate Group. His research focuses on the natural product chemistry of grapes and related fruits and nuts.

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Bruce Hammock Named Faculty Research Lecturer
Professor Bruce Hammock, Department of Entomology, was named 2001 Faculty Research Lecturer by the Academic Senate at its fall meeting. The honor recognizes exceptional research contributions of a campus faculty member. It has been presented 59 times since being established by the Davis Sigma Chi club in 1941. Hammock joined the UC Davis faculty in 1980. He was elected to the National Academy of Sciences in 1999, one of the highest honors in the United States for scientists. He received the prestigious Alexander von Humboldt Award in 1995 for research contributions to U.S. agriculture and the $250,000 Burroughs Wellcome Toxicology Scholar Award from the Society of Toxicology in 1987. Hammock's research focuses on new biological pest controls and analytical methods for detecting environmental contaminants. In research related to human health, Hammock studies "zenobiotics," potentially harmful synthetic or naturally occurring chemicals to which people are exposed, including pesticides and drugs. In research related to pest control, Hammock is studying natural agents, such as viruses, that can act as pesticides. He and colleagues have genetically engineered insect-specific viruses so that the viruses would interfere with the growth and development of certain caterpillars that feed on agricultural crops. In research related to developing rapid analytical methods for detecting environmental and food contaminants, Hammock has done pioneering work in using "immunochemical" methods to detect pesticides, food contaminants and industrial compounds in food, the environment and humans. The technology has been approved for use in the United States and Europe and is being used in developing countries to improve food supplies.

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Carl Winter Performs at Staff Assembly Fall Meeting
Carl Winter, Cooperative Extension food toxicologist in the Department of Food Science and Technology and director of the campus FoodSafe Program, will perform at the UC Davis Staff Assembly Fall Meeting on Tuesday, November 7, 2000, at 12 noon in Memorial Union, MUII. Known as the "Elvis of E.coli," Winter will perform his own version of popular songs that reinforce the results of the research he conducts. An accomplished performer, he has delighted audiences throughout the country, appearing on stage and television.

Check outCarl Winter's website

Kathy S. von Rummelhoff
UC Berkeley Staff Assembly Office
[email protected]

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$3.8 Million Grant for Biocomplexity Study
A new $3.8 million grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF) will enable theoretical ecologist Alan Hastings and his UC Davis team to look at the ecosystem processes of invasive Spartina alterniflora, an Atlantic cordgrass that traps sediment and, therefore, elevates the marsh in Pacific estuaries. The award was effective in October and expires in 2005. Atlantic cordgrasses decrease human commercial, traditional, non-commercial and esthetic values of Pacific estuaries. This study will look at the dynamics of an invasive species, including a core mathematical/conceptual model, physical and biological feedbacks and a careful, justified study of impacts on non-commercial human values. Integrating the valuation with the model will provide one of the first rigorous studies of invasive species on the value of ecosystem services. The grant is titled "Dynamics of an Invasive Non-Native Species and its Biological, Physical and Human Impacts: Spartina Alterniflora on the Pacific Coast." It was awarded to the University of California, Davis, and will be directed by ecological mathematician Alan M. Hastings, professor, David F. Layton, assistant professor, and Edwin D. Grosholz, assistant Cooperative Extension specialist, Department of Environmental Science and Policy; Donald R. Strong, evolution and ecology professor, Division of Biological Sciences; and Susan L. Ustin, associate professor, Department of Land, Air and Water Resources.

Alan M. Hastings
Department of Environmental Science and Policy
[email protected]
(530) 752-8116

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$4.4 Million Grant Funds Wheat Genome Mapping
The National Science Foundation awarded a $4.4 million grant to two UC Davis scientists and their colleagues to fund the mapping of wheat genomes, the largest plant genomes to be tackled by gene mappers. This project will lead to a better understanding of the structure and organization of the genomes of all plants. Researchers, in turn, will locate the genes responsible for economically important traits, which can be incorporated into improved agricultural crop varieties. Professor Jan Dvorak, Department of Agronomy and Range Science, and UC Davis researcher Ming-Cheng Luo are collaborating with scientists at Kansas State and Texas A&M Universities and with the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Agricultural Research Service in Albany, California. The grant also provides an infrastructure at UC Davis to pursue other projects in plant genomics, including construction of physical maps for plant genomes. "We are thrilled that NSF funded this pioneering project because, if successful, it will demonstrate that a physical map can be constructed for the genome of any plant or animal, not just for small-genome models such as rice and Arabidopsis," said Dvorak.

Jan Dvorak
Department of Agronomy and Range Science
[email protected]
(530) 752-6549

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Bee Biology Facility Named for Harry Laidlaw
Professor emeritus Harry Laidlaw, Department of Entomology, will be honored at a dedication ceremony on Wednesday, November 29, 2000, at the University Club when the Bee Biology Facility will be renamed the Harry H. Laidlaw, Jr. Honey Bee Research Facility. Robert Page, professor and entomology chair, proposed the name change. "Harry Laidlaw is considered worldwide the "dean of apiculture," Page said. "He is the father of honey bee genetics and has had a long-term commitment to apicultural research here in California." Born and raised in Texas, Laidlaw's first experience with bees was working on a hive at age five. He inseminated his first queen bee at age 13. At 30, he developed the first insemination instrument, a "very complicated advancement," Page explained. He was in his late 80s when he published his final paper on insemination instruments. A resident of Davis, Laidlaw celebrated his 93th birthday last April. Laidlaw joined the UC Davis faculty in 1947 and began the campus's bee program. He found funding for the bee research laboratory located west of campus and funding to hire bee researchers. It was here at Davis that he developed technology that made it possible to artifically inseminate queen bees. "Harry is a gentleman, and I consider him my best friend," Page said. "Renaming the bee facility in his honor truly memoralizes his work and his contributions."

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Radio Series Focuses on Family Farms
As part of the "Traditions in Transition" project - celebrating family farms and examining the challenges facing rural life in California - independent radio producer Robin White has created a series of radio segments focusing on the state of the family farm in California. The series will air statewide on The California Report in Sacramento on KXJZ, 88.9 FM, Saturdays at 5:30 p.m., and on KXPR, 90.9 FM, Saturdays at 5:00 p.m. One segment will run each week for four weeks starting November 3, 2000. Part One is an overview of the difficulties facing family farmers in California. In Part Two, the producer rides along on a traditional cattle drive in the Owens Valley. The interview with Tom and Kathy Noland focuses on how much longer the ranching culture can survive our increasingly urban world. Part Three deals with the stresses of running a family business. Part Four profiles organic farmers who are using innovative strategies to get a better return on their labors.

Victoria E. Whitworth
CDR Coordinator
Department of Environmental Design
[email protected]
(530) 752-2245

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Faculty Development Program Awards
The Faculty Development Program was initiated in 1978 to encourage scholarly attainment by faculty members whose heavy involvement in university and community service has significantly impeded - or has the potential to impede - progress in research or other creative activity. While all faculty are eligible for awards, priority is given to assistant professors with worthy proposals and demonstrable need.

Application instructions are availableonline

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Chancellor's Teaching Fellowships
The Chancellor's Teaching Fellowship Program has issued a call for applications. The program provides graduate students with opportunities to participate in closely supervised teaching apprenticeships with UC Davis faculty members. The program is open to graduate students in all disciplines. The primary purpose of the fellowship is to enhance the preparation of potential future faculty by supporting close collaborative relationships between teaching fellows and faculty members acknowledged as exemplary teachers. The apprenticeship relationship is the critical aspect of the program; however, the select nature of the award also intends to honor those graduate students who have demonstrated exceptional promise as educators at the postsecondary level.

A description of the program and the application procedure is availableonline

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Short-Term Programs Abroad
The Office of the Provost, the Division of the Humaniities, Arts and Cultural Studies and the Education Abroad Center announce the UC Davis Short-Term Programs Abroad (STPA), developed to enhance the international environment on campus with overseas opportunities for faculty and students.

STPA Online

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Regents' Professor and Lecturer Program
The UC Regents' Professor and Lecturer Program was established to enrich the intellectual atmosphere and enhance the reputation of the various UC campuses. This program creates opportunities to bring persons of distinction to the campus - individuals whose achievements generally are beyond the scope of academia. The program's advisory committee is soliciting nominations for the 2001-02 academic year. Nominations for individuals from nonacademic professions are preferred; however, proposals are welcomed from any individual who has had a demonstrated impact beyond the realm of academia. The background and achievements of nominees should attract the interest of a wide spectrum of the campus community. Nominations must carry the support of at least three departments Deadline: January 29, 2001

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RFP: Kearney Research and Extension Center
The Kearney Research and Extension Center is soliciting new and continuing research project proposals for 2001. Principal investigators are encouraged to discuss project plans and support issues with Fred Swanson, superintendent, prior to formally submitted new project proposals. Deadline: November 27, 2000

Forms are availableonline

Fred Swanson
Kearney Research and Extension Center
[email protected]
(559) 646-6060

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Viticulture France Trip
Do you know that faculty from the Department of Viticulture and Enology will travel to France this month to take part in the third joint Burgundy-California-Oregon winemaking symposium? The meeting will be held in November 13-15, 2000, in Dijon, Burgundy.

Christian E. Butzke
Cooperative Extension specialist
Department of Viticulture and Enology
[email protected]
(530) 752-9312

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Killer Bees Making Progress!
Have you heard that the progress of Africanized "killer bees" across California is being tracked by researchers from the Department of Entomology?

Robert E. Page
Department of Entomology
[email protected]
(530) 752-5455

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Food Labels that are Good for Animals
Did you read about the new program to certify and label food products that meet animal-welfare standards? The first such certification effort in the United States, the program is designed to establish living standards for poultry, dairy cows and beef cattle raised for food production.

Joy A. Mench
Department of Animal Science
[email protected]
(530) 752-7125

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CA&ES Currents, the faculty/staff newsletter of the College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences at UC Davis, is distributed every other Friday. News deadline is noon Monday preceding Friday publication. Send inquiries to Ann Filmer, [email protected]



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