We welcome immigrants!

Science is an international activity, which makes it incredibly rich and diverse. I’ve often thought that scientists–who are used to collaborating with people throughout the world–should be in politics more often. In science, if someone is smart and talented it doesn’t matter where they are from, what religion they practice, their ethnicity, their gender, or who they love. Over the years, the Edison lab has had a very diverse group of members, all of whom have contributed significantly to our efforts. Here is a list of some of countries (outside the USA) that we have had represented in the lab over the years:

China, India, Greece, France, Iran, Japan, Portugal, Turkey, Australia, Macedonia, Nepal, Nigeria, Venezuela, Egypt, Kuwait, Ecuador, Argentina, Brazil, Costa Rica, Peru, Pakistan, Syria

These people are wonderful and have made our research possible, and I’m lucky to have known and worked with them. We are a nation of immigrants, and this is our biggest strength as a country.

Gravitational waves

No, we haven’t gotten into metabolomics of gravitational waves, but we did have a wonderful visit from Dave Reitze, Executive Director of LIGO. Dave is a friend from UF and the NHMFL, and he stopped by the CCRC before his wonderful public lecture on the detection of gravitational waves. Check out this short video with Dave telling us how it works. What exciting science!

Dave and Art in front of the CCRC 900.

A day of service

Athens is a great town, with a bunch of nice restaurants, fantastic music, and art. And of course, there is UGA! We are also rich in civil rights and community activism. I think it is important to be involved in community events, especially related to civil rights.

Athens, like many towns across the country, celebrated Martin Luther King, Jr. today. The morning was dedicated to a day of service and the afternoon was the first MLK day parade. I love to participate in these things, because they provide the “glue” in a community. Athens has some very dedicated and wonderful people, and I was happy to spend the day celebrating with them.

The morning included a welcome gathering with Life the Griot (aka Lemuel Laroche). He gave a very inspiring talk.

There was a large and diverse crowd at the MLK day of service event.

My wife and I worked at the Gospel Pilgram Cemetery clearing the grave sites from overgrown brush. It is an African American cemetery that was used by people who could not afford burials.

Here is one of the graves that I cleaned up today.

I met new friends today. This is a group of fly fishermen who are trying to raise awareness of global warming. Good group of activists!

Food Truck!

The CCRC is a wonderful research facility doing first-class glycobiology. And the people are great colleagues. But until today there has been no food service beyond vending machines. The UGA Taco truck saved the day! It was very popular and a fun social event. The cauliflower quesadilla was tasty! We hope this will be a weekly event, at least!

Congratulations to Rahil!

Rahil Taujale (second year IOB student co-mentored with Prof. Kannan) became a training fellow in the Glycobiology Training Program in the CCRC!

This is very well-deserved, as Rahil is making great progress on constructing a phylogeny of glycosyl transferases.

Congrats, Rahil!!

Instrumentation updates

2016 was a busy year with our move from UF and setting things up at UGA. We are finally getting where we want to be now.

Our first major instrument was the worm sorter

Then we got a new 600 MHz AVIII-HD Bruker NMR for metabolomics (with sample changer): wonderful instrument!

A month ago we upgraded our 800 MHz to the latest Bruker for metabolomics (with sample changer). We are still waiting for some specialized probes, especially a 1.5-mm cryo.

Last month we also ordered the final upgrade to our 900 MHz system for structural biology. Guess which company got that order?

New Grants!

The past few months have been quite productive. As the saying goes, “the harder I work, the luckier I get”!

New NIH RO1 (with Bill Brey, NHMFL): Development of a High-sensitivity 13C NMR Probe for Metabolomics

New Moore Foundation (with Mary Ann Moran, UGA): Assessing the movement of carbon currencies between marine microbes

New NSF (again with Mary Ann): Metabolic Currencies of the Ocean Carbon Cycle

NIH Admin supplement (with Ted Ross, UGA): Predictive modeling to identify biomarkers of disease severity in Zika virus infections

NIH RO1 (with Maureen Keller-Wood): Effects of Maternal Cortisol on Fetal and Neonatal Growth and Metabolism

Stay tuned for more that might be on the horizon!

Happy 2017!

We have added several people recently to the lab.

Max Colonna moved from a research scientist to a first year Biochemistry grad student. Max is co-mentored by Shaying Zhou (IOB and Biochemistry), so we also get to start an exciting new project with her lab!

Sicong Zhang joined the lab as a first year Biochemistry grad student. Sicong is very good with MATLAB, so she will be helping with several projects. Her main project will be to work on the new Phytoplankton project with Mary Ann Moran (UGA Marine Sciences).

Dr. Haris Panagos started as a postdoc near the end of 2016. Haris will be splitting his time between technical support in the NMR facility and working on the new phytoplankton project.

Welcome, yawl!!