Research equipment grant recipients announced

November 18, 2022

The College of Biological Sciences recently announced the recipients of the Enhancing CBS Research Equipment Infrastructure funding opportunity. The selection committee awarded 15 recipients with grants, totalling more than $300,000. The recipients included:

  • The Agilent 4150 TapeStation system for nucleic acid electrophoresis allows quality control of libraries for next-generation sequencing (NGS). This system precisely estimates sample size, quantity and integrity, and will allow on-site analysis of NGS libraries to accelerate the genomics workflows of CBS laboratories. Grant Lead: Juan Carlos Riviera-Mulia (BMBB)
  • Funds will be used to purchase a new nanopure water system. This system is critical for measuring soil, water, and plant nutrients, soil microbial biomass, soil microbial extracellular activity, and other soil, water, and plant properties in a variety of observational and experimental studies of the effects of global change factors and urban stressors on ecosystem functioning. Grant Lead: Sarah Hobbie (EEB)
  • Funds will be used to purchase an LED illumination system for a compound fluorescence microscope that is shared by multiple lab groups in PMB and EEB. The microscope will support a number of externally-funded projects that require visualization of gene expression, chromosomes, nanoparticles, etc. Grant lead: Dave Moeller (PMB)
  • The funds will be used to purchase a versatile Beckman Avanti J-HC centrifuge for collection of a variety of cell types and organisms, including bacteria, yeast, amoebae, Chlamydomonas, C. elegans and cultured cells.  The shared instrument can accommodate a broad range of volumes (from 1.5 ml to 1 liter), greatly facilitating a variety of experiments from cellular transformation, immunoprecipitation and subcellular fractionation to protein purification. Grant Lead: Ann Rougvie (GCD)
  • The OpenSPR-XT is a 96-well compatible, next generation surface plasmon resonance instrument that uses an LED optics-based measurement system to detect label-free biomacromolecular interactions. Kinetics and real-time assays of biomolecules binding peptides, proteins, nucleic acids, and liposomes are now possible and open(SPR) to the CBS community. Grant Lead: Mike Freeman (BMBB)
  • Funds will allow our team of CBS graduate students, faculty, and other collaborators to replace our current old field vehicle with a newer and more reliable one. Our collaborative field research program on the seasonally dry tropical forests in rural Costa Rica requires extensive travel over poor roads to reach permanent forest dynamics plots. Grant Lead: Jennifer Powers (EEB/PMB)
  • Itasca Biological Station and Labs (IBSL) has been tracking water quality and ice declines since 1940 across a series of boreal wilderness lakes, but winter accessibility has prohibited data collection during 'hard water' season. This award will fund equipment and instrumentation at IBSL to track, access and collect data from these lakes, filling a knowledge gap in biogeochemistry that has gained significant recent attention. Grant Lead: Jonathan Schilling (PMB/Itasca)
  • Funds will be used to purchase an Agilent single quadrupole liquid chromatography-mass spectrometer (LCMS), which is capable of separating, detecting, and quantifying a wide range of metabolites and small peptides. Direct access to this instrument will enable CBS researchers to perform metabolic analyses on biological and environmental samples, validate chemicals, and train students and postdoctoral scholars to be proficient LC-MS users. Grant Lead: Tom Niehaus (PMB)
  • Funds will be used to purchase a Mettler XPR10 Microbalance (range 0.082mg-10.1g) at the Creek Creek Ecosystem Science Reserve, which will be available for use by the CBS community and visiting researchers.  This balance will increase the efficiency and availability of weighing a high volume of soil and plant samples for various analyses annually at Cedar Creek. Grant Lead: Troy Mielke (Cedar Creek)
  • A modern, multi-sensor weather station at Cedar Creek will enable researchers across the College of Biological Sciences and beyond to access precise, accurate, local climatological data for use in their data analyses. This funding will provide the opportunity to phase out our aging station with one that is more functional, secure and accessible for the broader research community. Grant lead: Caitlin Potter (Cedar Creek)
  • This is a DIY high-resolution, infrared compatible movement and sound tracking system for behavioral research. This new system is specifically designed to track movements of small animals over a large field, a niche that is uncovered by current commercially available movement tracking systems. Grant lead: Mingzi Xu (EEB)
  • Funds will be used towards the purchase of a solvent-resistant vacuum evaporator. This will enable higher-throughput processing of samples that need to be extracted with harsh organic solvents. Grant Lead: Mike Smanski (BMBB)
  • Funds will be used to help establish a CBS adaptive equipment repository that will help to improve the accessibility of field-based courses and research for students. Specifically, these funds will go towards purchasing a GRIT Freedom Chair, a specialized all-terrain wheelchair and a FreeWheel, a device that can be affixed to a manual wheelchair to allow off-road use. Grant lead: Emilie Snell-Rood (EEB)
  • Funds will assist the purchase of a new refrigerated incubator/shaker. This instrument allows to grow bacterial cultures from milliliter to liter scale at a range of temperatures and serves a crucial need for essentially all researchers in the BioTechnology Institute and beyond. Grant lead: Burckhard Seelig (BMBB/BTI)
  • Funds will go towards the purchase of an advanced tissue homogenizer for disrupting tissues and cellular structures, enabling isolation of a wide-variety of biomolecules under conditions that preserve native chemical structures and are compatible with downstream analyses by mass spectrometry.  This new equipment will be useful for a broad array of studies by CBS investigators seeking to profile proteins, metabolites and other biomolecules of interest in their research. Grant Lead: Tim Griffin (BMBB/CMP)