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CBS News - March 12, 2003


Cargill Building to be dedicated on May 5
Dedication of the Cargill Building for Microbial and Plant Genomics has been set for Monday, May 5, from 2 to 5 p.m. Claire Fraser, director of The Institute for Genomic Research (TIGR) in Washington, D.C., is guest speaker. TIGR is considered the leading microbial genomics research institute in the country. Fraser, who has led efforts to sequence several microbial genomes, will participate in the ribbon-cutting ceremony, receive an honorary doctorate from the University, and deliver a scientific lecture. CBS nominated Fraser for the doctorate, which is the University's highest honor. Please watch CBS News for further details about the opening.

New Assignments in CBS Dean's Office
To reduce costs in the CBS dean's office, several vacant staff positions have been eliminated. Consequently, remaining positions have been redefined and Dean's Office administrative staff have been reassigned. For matters related to Dean Elde, including scheduling meetings, please contact Alaine Siniff. Anwar Meah will provide back-up calendar support when Alaine is not available. Jean McAlpine, who previously handled the dean's calendar, now supports Robin Wright, associate dean for academic and faculty affairs. Jean Marie Lindquist now supports the External Relations team, headed by Janene Connelly. Evelyn Juliussen and Amy Ram, who coordinate activities for the Life Sciences Summer Undergraduate Research Program, will also provide support for Judd Sheridan, associate dean for research and international programs. Andrea Garrett and Juli Pelletier will continue to report to Jeff Thomas and handle human resource and accounting/purchasing support. Kristen Murphy is relocating to 123 Snyder Hall, but will continue to support the Lake Itasca Biological Station and the Science Education Partnership in Greater Minnesota program funded by the Howard Hughes Medical Institute grant. Please be patient as these transitions take place and staff become familiar with new responsibilities.

Welcome Robin Wright, new CBS associate dean
All CBS faculty, staff, and students are invited to welcome new CBS Associate Dean Robin Wright at receptions on the Minneapolis and St. Paul campuses later this month. The Minneapolis reception will be Monday, March 24, from 3:30 - 4:30 p.m. in the atrium of the Molecular and Cellular Biology Building. The St. Paul reception will be Monday, March 31, 3:30 - 4:30 p.m., in the Ecology Building, in the area just outside the department office. Wright comes to CBS from the University of Washington, where she was an associate professor of zoology and director of the Hughes Program for Undergraduate Education. Wright received her Ph.D. from Carnegie-Mellon University in Pittsburgh in 1985 and completed her postdoctoral training at the University of California, Berkeley, in the Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology. Her research focuses on yeast genetics. In her new role, Wright will be responsible for leading educational planning at CBS. She will continue her research as a professor in the Department of Genetics, Cell Biology, and Development.

Don’t miss your chance to be part of Campaign Minnesota, the University’s historic fund raising effort. Throughout the University and here in CBS, faculty and staff are getting on board, and designating their gifts to the scholarships, fellowships, programs, or departments of their choice. Retired faculty and staff, as well as current employees are participating. One example is Jean Parmelee, widow of David Parmelee, former professor of ecology, evolution and behavior and director of Itasca Biological Station. She helped establish a scholarship in her late husband’s name, and continues to support that scholarship with a pledge of monthly donations. Another example is Henrietta Miller, former biochemistry, molecular biology and biophysics department administrator. She and her husband, Phillip, have designated part of their estate to support a scholarship created upon Henrietta’s retirement in 1983. To join Jean and Henrietta, contact Janene Connelly (612-624-7496,
Campaign or Paul Germscheid (612-624-3752, Or make a contribution online at,

Bioinformatics Symposium
You are invited to the Second Annual Bioinformatics Symposium: Building Bridges, on Friday, March 28, in Memorial Hall at the McNamara Alumni Center. The event will feature world-renowned speakers, posters, demonstrations, and a lunch hosted by the bioinformatics graduate faculty. It’s free, but registration is required. Please register by Friday, March 14.

Legislature planning higher education target budget
In the next few weeks, House and Senate leadership will set separate "targets" for each area of the state budget, including higher education. The overall higher education "slice of the pie" will be determined at that time, and then the discussion will turn to how much will go to the U, how much to MnSCU, and how much for financial aid. Now is a good time to urge your legislator to support the U.

CBS students impress the president
Several CBS students participated in “Impress the President: A Student Expo on Public Engagement and Research Initiatives,” during Founders Week. The following students presented their work or participated in discussions:

  • Pete Avis (Plant Biology) “Dissecting direct and indirect effects of N increase on ectomycorrhizal fungal communities.”
  • Kari Eichstaedt (Plant Biology) “Preference and potential fecundity of the milfoil weevil.”
  • Rao Fu (BMBB) “Transcriptional control of potassium channels in pulmonary vasculature.”
  • Jennifer McNabb (BMBB) “HuA and Tristetraprolin Compete for Binding to a Subset of T Lymphocyte AU-Rich Sequences.”
  • Michelle Solensky (EEB) “The Monarch Larva Monitoring Project: A Citizen-Scientist Collaboration” and “Determinants of male reproductive fitness in monarch butterflies”
  • Bobbi Sislo (GCD) participated in a discussion on research and public engagement with President Bruininks.

Rob Brooker wins 2003 Morse-Alumni Award for Undergraduate Education
Robert Brooker, professor of genetics, cell biology and development, will be among sixteen U of M faculty inducted into the Academy of Distinguished Teachers at a ceremony on April 21 at 3:30 p.m. in the McNamara Alumni Center, 200 Oak Street SE, Minneapolis. Brooker is one of eight faculty who will receive the Morse-Alumni Award for contributions to undergraduate education. Eight faculty also will receive the Universityís Graduate-Professional Teaching Award for their contributions to graduate and professional education. As lifetime Academy members, the award recipients will provide leadership to the University community by serving as mentors, advisors, and spokespersons for the Universityís mission.

while skating at The Depot indoor rink in downtown Minneapolis on Saturday, March 22, from 5 p.m. to 1 a.m. Set inside the Historic Train Depot, the skating rink features floor-to-ceiling glass windows that will provide you with a beautiful view of the downtown skyline. Bring your family and friends to this fun CBS alumni event. Be sure to rest your feet and enjoy your complimentary beverage in the alumni lounge. Cost is only $5 for adults and $3 for children 17 and under. Pay at the door but RSVP to CBS Alumni Relations,
You are invited to connect with CBS students, alumni, faculty, and friends
Skate away with, or 612-624-4770.

CBS Faculty are invited to submit a paper or a technical session proposal for the 2003 Conference on Emerging Technologies. The conference will be held this summer on the Minneapolis campus of the University of St. Thomas. The goal of this conference is to foster cross-disciplinary interaction to support emerging technologies nearing commercialization. Deadline for submitting a paper is May 1. Deadline for a technical session proposal is March 17. For more information visit the conference’s website,
Submit your paper for the 2003 Conference on Emerging Technologies

Greenhouse plant sale
The Plant Biology Phytograds and The College of Biological Sciences Greenhouse will have a plant sale on Wednesday and Thursday, April 2 & 3, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. The sale will be held at the St. Paul Student Center, room 108. Call Jodi Bjork at 625-4788 if you have questions.

Teaching positions
The Division of Biological Sciences at The University of Montana is accepting applications for multiple sabbatical and other replacement teaching positions for 2003-2004. These are non-renewable, one-year-only positions. Successful applicants should have formal training and coursework in their subject area, along with teaching and research experience. Advanced degree required, but Ph.D. preferred. To apply, submit CV, statement of teaching interests and areas of expertise, and names and contact information of three references to: D. P. Christian, Division of Biological Sciences, The University of Montana, Missoula MT 59812.


Welcome to Paul Marker, assistant professor of genetics, cell biology and development, who came to the University of Minnesota in fall, 2002 from a post-doctoral position at the University of California at San Francisco. Paul is Deputy Director of the Cancer Center's Mouse Genetics Laboratory and a member of the Genetic Mechanisms of Cancer Program. He is interested in understanding the biology of the prostate gland at the molecular level, particularly the role of intercellular communication between epithelial and mesenchymal/stromal cells.
Duncan Clarke, assistant professor of genetics, cell biology, and development, has been awarded atwo-year R21 grant from NIH for his project “Identification of Yeast Chromosome Condensation Factors.”

Ross Johnson, professor of genetics, cell biology, and development, has been granted a competitive renewal of a five-year R01 grant from NIH for his project “Gap Junction Assembly: Mechanisms and Regulation.”

Fangyi Zhao, research associate in genetics, cell biology, and development, and Brian Van Ness, department head of genetics, cell biology, and development, were awarded a new two-year grantfrom the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society for their project “Genetic Polymorphisms Associated with Chemotoxicity, Response and Disease Progression In Myeloma.”

Events & Seminars

Sponsored by GCD.Contact Joy Jadrich,
Moos 2-690, 12 noon
Gail Martin, University of California, San Francisco
“FGF Function in Embryonic Development: Out on a Limb”

Sponsored by Agronomy and Plant Genetics. Contact Suzanne Livingston,
135 Earle Brown Center, 3:30 p.m.
Paul Ehrlich, Stanford University
“Checkerspots: A Model System in Population Biology”

Sponsored by GCD. Contact David Largaespada,
BSBE 2101, 12 noon
Abel Ponce de Leon, department head of animal science
St. Paul Campus Animal Genome Group

March 28
Second Annual Bioinformatics Symposium: Building Bridges
Memorial Hall McNamara Alumni Center, 8 a.m.

Sponsored by Plant Biology. Contact Satish Gupta,
335 Borlaug Hall, 2 p.m.
Rattan Lal, Ohio State University
“Controlling Greenhouse Gases and Feeding the Globe through Soil Management”
April 04