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Category: Biological sciences

112 article(s) found that match this category.

Trout, heal thyself
Summer 2015

Rainbow trout facing their main illness, coldwater disease, might have a better treatment option in probiotics from their own intestinal bacteria.


Categories: Biological sciences
Tags: Rainbow trout, Animal diseases, Fish


Diving deep in a unique tropical paradise
Winter 2014

WSU marine biology doctoral student Cori Kane studies rare endemic fish in the Hawaiian archipelago.


Categories: Biological sciences
Tags: Marine biology, Fish, Hawaii


The Scrambled Natural World of Global Warming, A Travelogue
Winter 2014

More than 20 years ago, entomologist Jesse Logan ’77 predicted that global warming would lead to the rise of the mountain pine beetle and the devastation of forests around the West. He was right. Now a menagerie of creatures, including beetles, salamanders, ticks, and birds, are caught up in climate change.


Categories: Environmental studies, Biological sciences
Tags: Insects, Forest ecology, Climate change, Entomology


The Beguiling Science of Bodies in Motion
Winter 2013

Through biomechanics, WSU’s experts smooth a runner’s stride, deepen our understanding of whiplash, study the impact of sports balls on bodies, and seek to build better bones.


Categories: Engineering, Biological sciences
Tags: Bones, Bioengineering, Biomechanics


If You Don’t Snooze, You Lose
Fall 2013

Chances are, you do not get enough sleep. And that could be dangerous.


Categories: Biological sciences, Social sciences
Tags: Sleep, Fatigue, Police, Pilots


The Animal Mind Reader
Summer 2013

Beyond the notion that animals other than humans may indeed possess consciousness, Jaak Panksepp’s work suggests a litany of philosophical implications: How should we treat animals? Do we have free will? Where might we search for the meaning of life? Are our most fundamental values actually biological in nature?


Categories: Veterinary medicine, Biological sciences
Tags: Emotions, Consciousness, Animal behavior, Neuroscience


Spinach is suspect: A pathological mystery
Spring 2013

Seed pathologist Lindsey du Toit at WSU Mount Vernon has been sleuthing out why spinach has been suffering from wilt, and whether the problem comes from spinach seed mostly grown in northwestern Washington.


Categories: Biological sciences, Agriculture
Tags: Spinach, Plant diseases, Plant pathology


Passing the Smell Test
Spring 2013

Throughout the living world, the nose leads the way, pioneering a course through the environment with the ability to spot virtually invisible perils and prizes.


Categories: Biological sciences, Business, Environmental studies
Tags: Smell, Smelling, Olfaction, Scents


A Summer of Science
Winter 2012

Over nine short weeks this summer, undergraduate Laurel Graves helped develop one of the first research projects to measure how much carbon wheat consumes and releases. “The entire world, all 7 billion people,” she says, “and we’re the only ones doing this thing. It’s kind of a crazy thought.”


Categories: WSU students, Biological sciences, Education
Tags: Undergraduate research


Life Histories: The Butterflies of Cascadia
Fall 2012

In documenting the life histories of Cascadia’s butterflies, every one of the 158 species represented a separate research project. The result has been a wealth of biological and ecological knowledge that simply did not exist before David Nunnallee and WSU entomologist David James began their monumental task.


Categories: Entomology, Biological sciences
Tags: Butterflies, Cascades


Not quite right as rainwater
Summer 2012
Jen McIntyre is something of a rainwater connoisseur, but you wouldn’t want to drink from her collection. Her preferred source is a drainpipe that runs from State Route 520 to a parking lot in Seattle’s Montlake neighborhood. Tens of t...
Categories: Biological sciences, Environmental studies
Tags: Fish, Pollution, Stormwater


Managing Nemo
Summer 2012

While collectors are hunting for tropical fish along the reefs of West Hawaii, marine scientist Brian Tissot is looking for ways to protect and replenish the colorful populations. We dive into his story, and the waters of Hawaii, as he checks in on the aquarium fishery.


Categories: Public affairs, Biological sciences
Tags: Fish, Aquariums, Hawaii, Marine biology


Living the right-sized life
Spring 2012
I want to walk on water, climb walls, and dance on the ceiling. If insects can do it, it’s only fair that I should, too.But this thing called physics has decreed otherwise. Carol Anelli, a WSU entomologist, can tell you why, having a lifelong f...
Categories: Biological sciences, Physics
Tags: Entomology, Insects


On Closer Inspection—The curiouser and curiouser world of the small
Spring 2012

In some ways, with so much science now involving tools that detect things outside the five senses, examining the world with a microscope seems quaint. But a corps of WSU researchers—let’s call them microscopists—are wrangling photons, electrons, glowing proteins, exotic stains, and remarkably powerful devices in their pursuit of the small.


Categories: Botany, Natural sciences, Biological sciences
Tags: Scientific equipment, Cells, Microscopy, Microscopes


Anna Ballard Wilson ’04—CSI: Cheney
Spring 2012
When Anna Wilson’s cell phone rings, there’s usually a dead body involved.No matter if she’s in the shower or at the movies, she’s out the door in a matter of minutes, headed for the Washington State Patrol forensics lab at the edge o...
Categories: Biological sciences, Alumni
Tags: Forensics, Washington State Patrol, Criminal justice


Outsmarting Dementia
Winter 2011
We used to believe, says neuropsychologist Maureen Schmitter-Edgecombe, that if a person lived long enough, he or she would develop dementia. Now we know better, she says. Whether caused by Alzheimer’s or other disease, dementia ...
Categories: Biological sciences, Psychology, WSU faculty
Tags: Aging, Dementia, Memory, WSU staff


An evolutionary myth is dismissed
Winter 2011
Even though a paper on guppy senescence by evolutionary biologist Donna Holmes and her colleagues has circulated for several years, the “grandmother hypothesis” still persists.And understandably so. One of those rare feel-good stories f...
Categories: Biological sciences
Tags: Evolutionary biology, Menopause, Evolution


When Memory Fades
Winter 2011

With memory notebooks and smart apartments that use motion technology to  track their residents' daily behaviors, WSU neuropsychologists are exploring ways to  help patients and their families cope with age-related memory loss. Meanwhile, two  scientists have discovered a means to restore neural connectivity.


Categories: Psychology, Biological sciences
Tags: Aging, Dementia, Memory, Alzheimer's Disease, Neuroscience


What's the catch?
Summer 2011
The rainbow trout has evolved over millions of years to survive in varied but particular circumstances in the wild. The hatchery rainbow fl ourishes in its relatively new, artificial surroundings, but its acquired skill set compromises its evolution. The rainbow has so straddled the worlds of nature and nurture, says biologist Gary Thorgaard, that it has become “a world fish.”
Categories: Biological sciences
Tags: Genetics, Fishing, Rainbow trout, Fish


The fate of a blue butterfly
Summer 2011
A century or so ago, late spring in Oregon’s Willamette Valley saw waves of delicate blue and brown butterflies across a million acres of prairie, lighting on equally delicate lupines to lay their eggs. At least we can imagine it tha...
Categories: Biological sciences, Environmental studies
Tags: Butterflies, Endangered species


The Song is You—An Instinct for Music
Spring 2011
What is music good for, anyway?
Categories: Music, Biological sciences, Anthropology
Tags: Songs, Neuroscience, Evolution


New threats, new science
Spring 2011
Sure, Darwin had to battle seasickness aboard the HMS Beagle, and he spent nearly five years getting to and from the Galapagos Islands, and it took another 23 years to incorporate his findings into his seminal work on evolutionary biology.But at ...
Categories: Biological sciences
Tags: Animal diseases, Birds, Evolution


First We Eat
Winter 2010
She studies appetite. He studies satiation. Together, Sue and Bob Ritter have plumbed the mysteries  of what happens when we eat.
Categories: Biological sciences
Tags: Eating, Brain, Satiation, Appetite, Neuroscience


The deadly cough
Winter 2010
Few creatures in the course of human history have ever been as influential as the one that crawls and jumps and drinks blood in the lab of Viveka Vadyvaloo.It hit the world stage in the sixth century, starting in Lower Egypt, traveling by ship ...
Categories: Health sciences, Biological sciences
Tags: Bubonic plague, Plague, Fleas, Global Animal Health


Nature twice: Poetry and natural history
Winter 2010
I lean on a glass case that displays stuffed egrets, herons, and sparrows. Across the room, Larry Hufford—director of the Conner Museum of Natural History and professor in the School of Biologica...
Categories: Literature, Library and museum studies, Biological sciences
Tags: Museums, Poetry, Nature, Collaboration


A New Land
Winter 2010
John Bishop was late getting to Mount St. Helens.He was only 16 years old when it blew in 1980, and it would be another decade before he began crawling around the mountain as part of his doctoral studies.“I was worried I missed all the action...
Categories: Environmental studies, Botany, Biological sciences
Tags: Mount St. Helens, Volcanoes


Cows deposit piles of diversity
Fall 2010
Holly Ferguson knows her cow pies about as well as anyone. In the first study of flies in managed pastures in the Pacific Northwest, the entomologist has spent an unusual amount of time traveling the state and assessing its cow pies.No matter ...
Categories: Biological sciences, Agriculture
Tags: Cattle, Entomology, Manure, Dung


Too much of a good thing
Fall 2010
Science has been predicting and measuring our warming planet for more than a century now. But it was only in the last two decades that most Americans came to believe the earth’s temperature was indeed rising and that the main culprit is the...
Categories: Biological sciences, Agriculture, Environmental studies
Tags: Nitrogen, Greenhouse gases, Nitrate fertilizer, Climate change


Big Ideas
Summer 2010
We delve into WSU's rich intellectual history, listing some of the great ideas and discoveries that have come out of our institution.
Categories: WSU history, WSU faculty, Agriculture, Biological sciences, Social sciences
Tags: Research, Science history, Innovation, Scientists


Vancouver Lake: A Search for Solutions Great and Small
Spring 2010
This is the second time WSU scientists have worked on a plan to clean up Vancouver Lake. The first, in the 1960s, was monumental. This time it's microscopic.
Categories: Engineering, Biological sciences
Tags: Microbiology, Lakes, Vancouver


Leave it to beavers
Spring 2010
As we crunch through the snow in the hills above Winthrop, Steve Bondi ’02 and Ryan Anderson ’08 are eager to see evidence that their project to improve riparian habitat and provide late season water to the Methow Valley is working. They...
Categories: Biological sciences, Environmental studies
Tags: Ecology, Beavers


Laboratories for the new century
Spring 2010
First, six months of planning. Then, over the summer, came the actual moving of laboratory equipment, chemicals, papers, and all the rest. Finally, faculty, students, and staff from four separate science buildings are now under one roof in a ...
Categories: Campus life, Biological sciences
Tags: Molecular biology, Buildings


The Secret Death of Bees
Spring 2010
WSU lab probes mysterious decline in honey bee population.
Categories: Agriculture, Biological sciences
Tags: Bees, Colony Collapse Disorder, Honey


How we eat is what we are
Winter 2009
In the 1960s, 24.3 percent of Americans were overweight. Now, over 60 percent of us are. Even though other countries are hot on our heels, we are still the plumpest folk in the world. Does it matter?
Categories: Food, Economics, Health sciences, Biological sciences
Tags: Obesity, Nutrition, Food, Exercise, Diabetes


The Shape of Things to Come
Fall 2009

"Life is a process of self-assembly," says biochemist Alex Li. Proteins make up our hair and muscle, our brains and lungs, our enzymes and antibodies, and each one must attain a particular shape in order to do its work. Which they do with no outside help, following specific assembly codes built into their structure.


Categories: Biological sciences
Tags: Molecular biology, Proteins, Protein folding


Foiling an invasive
Fall 2009
Sometimes, figuring something out only deepens the overall mystery.Take Pseudomonas fluorescens D7, for example.Ann Kennedy, a USDA-Agricultural Research Service soil microbiologist at Washington S...
Categories: Agriculture, Biological sciences
Tags: Cheatgrass, Invasive weeds


Straight shot to a breakthrough? Don't count on it
Summer 2009
There are two sides to everything, says entomologist William Snyder of his biocontrol research. Along the way to developing a “practical” approach for crop defense, he answered a fundamental evolutionary question: Why are there so many species?
Categories: Biological sciences
Tags: Research, Innovation


You Must Remember This
Spring 2009
Having reached a certain age, our correspondent sets out to learn the latest from Washington State University researchers about memory. She learns that memory comes in different forms, that the human brain is made for problem-solving, and that the key to much of brain health is the "dendritic arbor." And then she sets out to create an action plan.
Categories: Biological sciences
Tags: Memory, Alzheimer's Disease


Great promise in a nitrogen conundrum
Spring 2009
Mike Kahn and Svetlana Yurgel, molecular biologists in Washington State University’s Institute of Biological Chemistry, have a challenge on their hands that involves one of the most abundant, but also difficult to obtain, substances on earth. Nea...
Categories: Biological sciences
Tags: Nitrogen, Molecular biology


Roger McClellan - A suitable combination
Spring 2009
As a teen, Roger McClellan ’60 D.V.M. went to work at his high school farm. By helping manage a flock of sheep that were a control group in a Hanford nuclear facility study, he became part of a major research project on radioactivity in animals. ...
Categories: Alumni, Biological sciences
Tags: Biochemistry


Fine Specimens
Winter 2008
Washington State University is home to three superb research collections, all begun soon after the young agricultural college opened its doors. What makes them research collections, says Ownbey Herbarium director Larry Hufford, is "sheer numbers." The Conner Zoology Museum has about 69,000 specimens, the Herbarium about 375,000, and the James Entomology Collection more than 1.25 million. These numbers make WSU's collections among the best in the nation.
Categories: Botany, Biological sciences
Tags: Herbarium, Zoology, Entomology, Museums


To Err is Human
Fall 2008
The older a woman is when she conceives, the more likely it is her eggs will have abnormal chromosomes. But beyond the fact of the biological clock, we often overlook a bigger story. Even with young mothers, chromosome abnormalities are the single most frequent cause of miscarriage and birth defects. Between 25 and 30 percent of all fertilized human eggs have the wrong number of chromosomes, a rate that seems peculiar to humans.
Categories: Biological sciences
Tags: Genetics, Birth defects, Chromosomes


Seeing red (and far-red)
Fall 2008
Ask crop scientist Michael Neff about plant growth, and he won't talk about rainfall or fertilizer. He'll talk about what the plants see."What I've been interested in forever is how plants use light as a source of information," says Neff. "Plants ...
Categories: Biological sciences, Agriculture
Tags: Plant behavior, Infrared


What a dive
Summer 2008
The Washington State University biologist, who retired in 2001 after decades of studying marine worms, was shorebound when the stubby little submarine called Alvin first carried humans to the bottom of the sea. Schroeder remembers the excitement ...
Categories: Biological sciences
Tags: Marine biology


Clarence A. (Bud) Ryan: A scientist who catalyzed excellence
Spring 2008
Clarence A. (Bud) Ryan, one of WSU’s preeminent scientists, died suddenly of a brain aneurysm in October. Ryan pioneered the study of the innate immune response of plants. Prior to his work, plants were assumed to contain protease inhibitors al...
Categories: Alumni, Botany, Biological sciences
Tags: Plant behavior


Through the Garden Gate
Spring 2008
Invasive species--plants, animals, and microbes--have been estimated to cost American businesses and taxpayers at least $122 billion every year in damaged property, lost productivity, and control efforts. However, perhaps more costly in the long run is the damage done to natural communities.
Categories: Botany, Biological sciences
Tags: Gardening, Invasive weeds


Kathleen Sayce: Keeping a heritage alive
Spring 2008
Wielding loppers, Kathleen Sayce cuts through brambles smothering a parcel in the heart of historic and otherwise tidy Oysterville on southwest Washington’s Willapa Bay. Between a leaning red alder and a mangled Sitka spruce, Sayce (’78 M.S. ...
Categories: Alumni, Biological sciences
Tags: Native plants


Time will tell
Winter 2007
Climate change is nothing new to our planet. But this time it's different. The carbon dioxide we are putting into the air through industry, vehicle emissions, and deforestation is changing the way our soil works. That in turn affects plant, animal, and eventually human life. Through their research Washington State University scientists are challenging the conventional view that more plants and forests will solve our CO2 problems.
Categories: Biological sciences, Environmental studies
Tags: Ecology, Climate change


Into the woods
Winter 2007
Unseen worlds live behind the bark and beneath the trees in Pacific Northwest forests. Scientists Jack Rogers and Lori Carris have made careers out of discovering these worlds and studying them. We go into the woods with them to glimpse the secret lives of fungi and their roles in nature.
Categories: Botany, Biological sciences
Tags: Mushrooms, Mycology, Fungi


Creatures from the Dark Lagoons
Winter 2007
Cynthia Haseltine wants everyone to know that the microbes she works with are not bacteria.They look like bacteria; each Sulfolobus is a single cell that has one circular chromosome and lacks a nucleus. But in their genes and the way they read and...
Categories: Biological sciences
Tags: Microbes, Microbiology


Contagion! Emerging diseases: Unraveling the mystery
Fall 2007

What makes some strains of pathogenic microbes nastier than others? Why do they emerge when and where they do? Are we more susceptible now than in the past, and if so, why? At least partial answers to these troubling questions may lie with snails and salamanders.


Categories: Biological sciences, Veterinary medicine
Tags: Diseases, Epidemic, Animal health


Borrowing nature's designs
Fall 2007
In Michael Knoblauch's lab, the gap between fundamental research and practical applications is a narrow one.Knoblauch studies the inner workings of phloem (FLOAM), the channels that transport water and nutrients throughout a plant. Research doesn'...
Categories: Botany, Biological sciences
Tags: Research


Counting cougs
Summer 2007

Between 1995, the year before Washington banned the hunting of cougars with hounds, and 2000, the number of human-cougar encounters nearly quadrupled. Although encounters have returned to pre-ban levels in some areas, the public perception is that cougars are making a comeback--and must be stopped. But Hillary Cooley and Rob Wielgus insist that much of what we think we know about cougars is wrong. And their argument rests with the young males.


Categories: Biological sciences
Tags: Wildlife, Cougars


Biology by the numbers
Summer 2007

In normal times, Europe's brown bears live in a state of happy equilibrium. But under certain circumstances, things can go seriously awry, leading the males to commit what researcher Robert Wielgus calls sexually selected infanticide. Wielgus's most powerful tool against this eventuality is math.


Categories: Biological sciences
Tags: Europe, Wildlife, Bears


Jane Goodall visits Pullman
Summer 2007
Nearly 6,000 people came to Beasley Coliseum the evening of March 8 to hear Jane Goodall speak about chimpanzees, conservation, and her own growth from shy child to scientific celebrity. In the early 1960s, she became the first person to observe c...
Categories: Campus life, Biological sciences
Tags: Chimpanzees, Primates


Welcome to Mildew Manor (And you think your house needs work.)
Spring 2007

No one would knowingly build a house this way. But this is Mildew Manor. And building it wrong is building it right.


Categories: Architecture and design, Biological sciences
Tags: Pest management, Mildew


Bright plumage against green foliage: the grandeur and beauty of evolution
Spring 2007
"Art can be considered as a behavior . . . like play, like food sharing, like howling, that is, something humans do because it helps them to survive, and to survive better than they would without it." —Homo Aestheticus: Where Art Comes From and...
Categories: Biological sciences
Tags: Evolution


Darwin was just the beginning: A sampler of evolutionary biology at WSU
Spring 2007

All of modern biology and medicine is based on the theory of evolution, and every life scientist arguably is an evolutionary biologist. So where to start in exploring evolutionary biology at WSU? How about with dung beetles, African violets, and promiscuous wrens?


Categories: Biological sciences
Tags: Education, Birds, Evolution


Zoology 61: Teaching eugenics at WSU
Spring 2007

Eugenics was the dark side of our understanding of human evolution. American eugenicists were united by the idea that the human race was degenerating because inferior people were breeding more quickly than those who were "well born." Zoology 61, Genetics and Eugenics, was finally dropped from the course catalog at Washington State College in 1950.


Categories: Biological sciences, WSU history
Tags: Eugenics


Hot stuff: Deep ocean fauna
Winter 2006
When it comes to tolerating extreme environments, deep-sea vent worms are hard to beat.
Categories: Biological sciences
Tags: Marine biology, Aquatic animals, Ocean


Do you hear what I hear?
Winter 2006
A researcher at WSU Vancouver explores how the brain turns sounds into meaningful messages.
Categories: Biological sciences
Tags: Neuroscience, Sound, Physiology


Rare bird
Fall 2006
Audubon himself would have trouble keeping up with this dynamo. Artist, author, and photographer Paul Johnsgard '55 gives us a glimpse into his lifelong obsession with birds.
Categories: Alumni, Biological sciences
Tags: Birds, Cranes, Photographers


Getting serious about biodiesel
Fall 2006
It's taken 25 years of basic research for work on plant-oil biochemistry to begin to pay off. And there's more work yet to do.
Categories: Biological sciences, Chemistry
Tags: Biodiesel, Biofuels


Uncommon access: Gaylord Mink shifts his focus from viruses to wild horses
Summer 2006
Gaylord Mink, hunched over and quiet as a mule deer, picks his way through rugged rangeland near the center of the Yakama Indian Reservation.Mink stops, straightens, and scans toward Dry Creek Elbow in the distance. Much closer, five wild horses l...
Categories: Biological sciences, Environmental studies, Agriculture
Tags: Animal health, Animal behavior, Horses, Plant behavior


The worm turns: A Palouse native is found
Summer 2006
A Palouse native, not seen in nearly two decades and feared extinct, has been rediscovered. While digging soil samples at the Washington State University botany department's Smoot Hill preserve, University of Idaho graduate student Yaniria Sanchez...
Categories: Entomology, Biological sciences
Tags: Palouse


Eating well to save the Sound
Summer 2006
The Puget Sound region's 3.8 million population is expected to increase to 5.2 million within the next 15 years. If Puget Sound is to survive that growth, we must change our lives. That, and eat more shellfish.
Categories: Biological sciences, Earth sciences, Food, Health sciences
Tags: Animal behavior, Food, Oysters, Water


No shrinking violet
Summer 2006
Researchers at WSU are finding that plants are surprisingly assertive. Based on their findings, a case could be made that the average potted plant is at least as active as the average human couch potato—and a lot smarter about what it consumes
Categories: Agriculture, Biological sciences, Botany, Alumni
Tags: Photosynthesis, Plant behavior, Pest management


The Secrets of Sweet Oblivion
Spring 2006
What happens in our brains when we go to sleep—and what happens to us if we don't sleep enough—are questions that keep this research team up at night.
Categories: Biological sciences
Tags: Sleep, Biochemistry


See Shells Far From the Sea Shore
Spring 2006
If the winter grays have you hankering for a glimpse of beach life, head to the Washington State University Tri-Cities campus at Richland. There, more than 200 miles from Washington's coast—or just a few clicks down the Internet road—you'll fi...
Categories: WSU collections, Biological sciences
Tags: Washington Coast


See Shells Far From the Sea Shore
Spring 2006
If the winter grays have you hankering for a glimpse of beach life, head to the Washington State University Tri-Cities campus at Richland. There, more than 200 miles from Washington's coast—or just a few clicks down the Internet road—you'll fi...
Categories: Biological sciences, WSU collections
Tags: Seashells, Washington Coast


It's Only a Model
Winter 2005
Modelers don't always expect their models to be "right." But they do expect them to help explain our world.
Categories: Biological sciences, WSU faculty
Tags: Shakespeare, Modeling, Seeds


Hanging on by a whisker
Winter 2005
What geology hath put asunder, biologists are are trying to join back together. So far it's working, although the effort requires a different measure of success than what's usually appled.
Categories: Biological sciences
Tags: Reproductive biology, Pygmy rabbits, Breeding


Rewriting the Book on Photosynthesis
Winter 2005
Thanks to David Kramer and his research group, plant physiologists can now explore what really goes on inside living leaves.
Categories: Biological sciences
Tags: Electricity, Photosynthesis


The Portals of Discovery
Fall 2005
A WSU study shows that a toxin-induced disease state can be inherited by subsequent generations.
Categories: Biological sciences
Tags: Reproductive biology


Molecular Mata Hari
Fall 2005
How to make cancer cells weapons of self-destruction.
Categories: Biological sciences
Tags: Cancer, Gene therapy


A life of science and beauty: 1953-2005
Fall 2005
We were all stunned and saddened by the death, from an aneurysm, of Vincent Franceschi. The director of both the School of Biological Sciences and the Electron Microscopy Center, Franceschi built a rich and diverse career in his 52 years. As a pla...
Categories: Biological sciences, WSU faculty
Tags: Microscopy


Jell-O brains and boa constrictors draw kids to science
Summer 2005
Fifth-graders from seven area school districts bustled into the CUB ballroom recently for the third annual Kids Judge! Neuroscience Fair. After the participants met with their brain team-neurons, dendrites, boutons, memory, synapses-they made a vi...
Categories: Biological sciences
Tags: Neuroscience, Children


Tough Microbes
Spring 2005
They might not eat nails, exactly, but these tough little critters might hold the key to some heavy-duty environmental cleanup.
Categories: Biological sciences
Tags: Lake Coeur d'Alene, Microbes


New Zealand mud snails: A tiny gastropod is a major problem here—not there
Spring 2005
They have already invaded the Snake River, Yellowstone National Park, and lots of other sites. They can reach population densities greater than 300,000 per square meter, carpeting stream beds and changing the way nutrients cycle through the ecosystem. It was a little difficult, though, to explain all of this to the gentleman who wanted to confiscate my snails.
Categories: Biological sciences
Tags: Pest management, Snails


Hazy, crazy days of summer... science
Winter 2004
In the chemistry laboratory in Fuller Hall, Cougar Summer Science campers are either making bouncy balls through cross-linking polymers or figuring out the generation properties of oxygen. Tossing her laboratory-produced ball in the air, Kyleigh ...
Categories: Chemistry, Biological sciences
Tags: Children, Education


A library of rhizobial genes
Fall 2004
Kahn and his team have nearly completed a monumental step in understanding nitrogen fixation.
Categories: Agriculture, Biological sciences
Tags: Nitrogen, Genetics, Bacteria


Sleep and Run—How do they do that?
Fall 2004
How can grizzlies hibernate for a season without any apparent loss of muscle?
Categories: Biological sciences
Tags: Sleep, Bears, Wildlife


Mount St. Helens: The perfect laboratory
Spring 2004
It is impossible to accept the immensity of Mount St. Helens and the effect of its catastrophic 1980 eruption unless you are able to stand beneath the enormous crater on the pumice plain and listen to John Bishop talk about lupines.
Categories: Environmental studies, Biological sciences
Tags: Mount St. Helens, Volcanoes


Building a better bee trap
Spring 2004
Bee-trap manufacturers like to use a chemical substance called pheromones to attract bees into traps and away from people. Problem is, they don't always work.Providing the right amount of pheromones is imperative. Too many pheromones or too much o...
Categories: Biological sciences, Entomology
Tags: Bees


On the origin of species—again
Spring 2004
Everyone calls them genius awards, except the foundation that gives them. When describing recipients of its annual $500,000 grants, the MacArthur Foundation avoids "genius"-rather, says the Foundation, MacArthur Fellows are people who transcend bo...
Categories: Biological sciences
Tags: Evolution, Flowers


A bug-eat-bug world
Winter 2003

If you can put other insects to work eating the insects that are bothering you, everybody wins. Except the pests.


Categories: Agriculture, Biological sciences
Tags: Entomology, Pest management


Maybe it's not just in your head
Fall 2003
Imagine trying to lead your life while avoiding diesel exhaust, perfume, cleaning fluids, the myriad chemicals that give off gas from new cars, carpets, or treated woods and fabrics—and a whole lot of other things. That's exactly the case for the 10 million or so Americans who suffer from severe multiple chemical sensitivity (MCS).
Categories: Biological sciences
Tags: Biochemistry, Multiple chemical sensitivity


The benefits of mustard
Fall 2003
Remember your first encounter with classic Chinese mustard? Your seared sinuses? Your cheeks washed with involuntary tears?What you tasted was the indelicate reaction of the mustard plant's chemical compounds, probably enhanced by the wetness of y...
Categories: Biological sciences, Agriculture
Tags: Potatoes, Biochemistry


Minding her B's & T's
Summer 2003
In the fast paced world of immunological research, it's not your p's and q's you have to mind, but your b's and t's. That's B cells and T cells, two of the main players in the complex orchestra that makes up your immune system. B. Paige Lawrence, ...
Categories: Biological sciences, Health sciences
Tags: Research, Immunology, Cells


Survival Science: Joanna Ellington champions fecundity
Summer 2003
...
Categories: Biological sciences
Tags: Reproductive biology, Infertility


Building the Perfect Bone
Summer 2003
With a new baby as inspiration, and an interdisciplinary team to help, husband and wife Amit Bandyopadhyay and Susmita Bose have set out to solve the puzzle of how to imitate nature's growth of the human bone.
Categories: Biological sciences, Engineering
Tags: Bones, Materials engineering


How do we perceive sound?
Spring 2003
Christine Portfors, a neurologist, tends a lair of 23 tropical moustache bats at WSU Vancouver in order to tease apart the question of how they distinguish between sounds-for example, between those they use for echolocation and those they use to ...
Categories: Biological sciences
Tags: Bats, Sound, Neuroscience


Mounting a defense against biological invaders
Spring 2003
Whatever its impact on trade, the World Trade Organization has opened the doors to biological invasion, says Dick Mack. A professor of botany at Washington State University, Mack is a leading authority on invasive species and lead author of Predi...
Categories: Botany, Biological sciences
Tags: Ecology, Invasive weeds


Drake enlivened the college experience
Spring 2003
For 36 years Charles H. Drake was a popular, well-respected professor at Washington State University. His introductory class in bacteriology attracted many non-science majors, as well as students preparing for careers in health care."He was an ext...
Categories: Biological sciences, WSU faculty
Tags: Bacteria, In memoriam


A summer job that meant something
Winter 2002
An entomology undergrad combats the worm in the appleWhen they hatch, they're so tiny you can barely see them. Then they eat. They bore their way inside an apple and consume it from within. After two weeks, they're half an inch long, pinkish orange...
Categories: Agriculture, Biological sciences
Tags: Apples, Pest management, Entomology


Herbert Eastlick mentored thousands
Winter 2002
Zoology professor Herbert L. Eastlick was devoted to preparing students for professional careers in medicine, dentistry, and veterinary medicine. He once described himself as a "taskmaster and autocrat in the classroom," motivated by his overridin...
Categories: Biological sciences, WSU faculty
Tags: In memoriam, Zoology


A Matter of Survival
Winter 2002
One of the simplest truths of nature is that if a species is to survive, it must reproduce. faculty researchers explore reproduction's mysteries and threats.
Categories: Biological sciences
Tags: Reproductive biology


A bizarre, slimy animal shows its stuff
Winter 2002
Without jaws, most vertebrates-including us-would be stuck hanging around in the ocean or on the ground, unable to bite and scooping up or filtering food. We'd also be smaller. Instead, we're fearsome predators and herbivores, with big brains and ...
Categories: Biological sciences
Tags: Genetics, Evolution


What's protein got to do with it?
Winter 2002
it is now possible to measure the activities of thousands of genes and corresponding proteins-all at once. The methods are reasonably straightforward technically, and all the necessary bits and pieces are available to anyone-for a price. A lot of ...
Categories: Biological sciences
Tags: Genetics, Proteins


Sure pigs play. But what does it mean?
Summer 2002
“They spin around, twirl, and take a big leap in the air . . . ,” says Ruth Newberry. “They zigzag a bit . . . jump up and down, and then flop.”A dramatic new figure skating routine? No. Newberry is an animal scientist at Washington State ...
Categories: Biological sciences
Tags: Pigs


Sex, food, and death
Summer 2002
Remember that notorious scene from Alien? You know the one. But instead of just one alien organism bursting out of its host, picture hundreds, even thousands. That’s what happens when Copidosoma floridanum wasps mature, says Laura Corley, assis...
Categories: Biological sciences
Tags: Entomology


What does Pim-1 really do?
Summer 2002
Although science has made much progress in understanding why cancer occurs—smoking, diet, environmental pollutants, viruses—the mechanisms of cancer are still elusive. Nancy Magnuson, of the School of Molecular Biosciences, ha...
Categories: Biological sciences
Tags: Cancer


Is nothing sacred?
Summer 2002
Never heard of C4 photosynthesis? Now you have. It's rare, it's cool, it could help feed the world. And WSU plant scientists just rewrote the textbook on it.
Categories: Biological sciences
Tags: Photosynthesis


"You'll miss it"
Spring 2002
“I liked science classes because they were applicable, and I’ve always been logical. But music adds some structure."Nothing navigates the left brain-right brain divide more effectively than guilt and loyalty.For proof, just pick the br...
Categories: Performing arts, WSU students, Biological sciences
Tags: Music, Students


Why do we sleep?
Spring 2002
James Krueger wants to know why the average person will spend 219,000 hours asleep.
Categories: Health sciences, Biological sciences
Tags: Sleep, Brain


Memories Are Made of This
Spring 2002
Neuroscientists Jay Wright and Joe Harding can approximate Alzheimer's symptoms in a rat by injecting a certain protein into its hippocampus. What's more, they can reverse those symptoms.
Categories: Biological sciences
Tags: Memory, Neuroscience, Brain


Lots of merit in biochem
Spring 2002
Molecular biologist Michael Smerdon has won a 10-year $3.58 million MERIT award from the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS) so that he can continue his research on repairing DNA. Smerdon was the only scientist to receive t...
Categories: Biological sciences
Tags: DNA


Better chow
Spring 2002
As anyone who has stir-fried vegetables knows, quickly cooking foods at high temperatures makes for crisper, fresher-tasting foods than using slow-cooking methods.So it is that over the past six years, associate professor of biological systems eng...
Categories: Biological sciences, Engineering
Tags: Food, Cooking


Curing what ails you
Winter 2001
IF GARY MEADOWS is right, popping Prozac will do more for you than relieve depression. Meadows’s preliminary data suggest that fluoxetine, the generic form of Prozac, inhibits the growth of melanoma tumors in mice. The Prozac project bega...
Categories: Biological sciences, Health sciences
Tags: Prozac, Melanoma, Cancer


Asking for trouble
Winter 2001
Hunting may create cougar problemsIF THE COUGAR IS ANYTHING like its fellow carnivore the grizzly, then the method we’re using to try to solve our current problems with cougars may well aggravate rather than alleviate them.Rob Wielgus,...
Categories: Biological sciences
Tags: Wildlife, Hunting, Cougars


In search of a tougher honey bee
Winter 2001
WASHINGTON STATE apple growers have a problem. The honey bees that pollinate their trees can be a little wimpy when it comes to temperature.Apple growers prefer to have the king, or primary, blooms pollinated, because they produce the...
Categories: Biological sciences
Tags: Bees, Entomology


What came first, the chicken or the egg?
Winter 2001
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Categories: Biological sciences
Tags: Evolution, Dr. Universe