Research Team Briefs for 2013

  • December

  • November

    • Michael Fox and team discover how retinal neurons claim best brain connections

      Real estate agents emphasize location, location, and – once more for good measure – location. It’s the same in a developing brain, where billions of neurons vie for premium property to make connections. Neurons that stake out early claims often land the best value, even if they don’t develop the property until later.

  • October

    • Robert Gourdie publishes book on wound regeneration and repair

      Robert Gourdie, a professor at the Virginia Tech Carilion Research Institute and director of the Center for Heart and Regenerative Medicine Research, has compiled, edited, and published a book titled, Wound Regeneration and Repair: Methods and Protocols. The book delves into the molecular underpinnings of the healing of tissues and organs, including the eyes, skin, neural system, and heart. It is a mix of review articles and cookbook-style “how-to” pieces that provide insight into the methodology of carrying out experiments in the field. It also details necessary equipment and tips and tricks not normally included in scientific papers.

    • Warren Bickel and Pearl Chiu join in on the conversation about addiction

      Warren Bickel, director of the Addiction Recovery Research Center at the Virginia Tech Carilion Research Institute, and Pearl Chiu, an assistant professor at the Virginia Tech Carilion Research Institute, talked with May Lily Lee, host of Virginia Conversations on WVTF Public Radio, about their research on addiction on September 20, 2013.

    • Michael Fox presented two talks for Vanderbilt’s Center for Matrix Biology

      Michael Fox, an associate professor at the Virginia Tech Carilion Research Institute, delivered two talks at the Center for Matrix Biology at the Vanderbilt School of Medicine.

    • Brooks King-Casas awarded grant for research into the neurobehavioral determinants of adolescent risk-taking

      What makes the adolescent brain so susceptible to health risks? Virginia Tech scientists have received a $3.9-million grant over five years from the National Institute on Drug Abuse for research into the neurobehavioral determinants of risky behavior in adolescents.

    • Gregorio Valdez highlighted in story from top ALS nonprofit biotech organization

      Gregorio Valdez, an assistant professor at the Virginia Tech Carilion Research Institute, was featured in an article about promising research that could slow the onset and progression of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, of ALS. The article appeared on the homepage of the ALS Therapy Development Institute, the top nonprofit biotechnology organization dedicated to developing effective treatments for ALS.

    • Jamie Tyler presents work on transcranial focused ultrasound at Carnegie Mellon workshop

      William “Jamie” Tyler, an assistant professor at the Virginia Tech Carilion Research Institute, gave a presentation at the second-annual Next Generation Medical Imaging Workshop, held at Carnegie Mellon University on September 27–28, 2013.

    • Konark Mukherjee presents new animal model for pervasive diseases

      Konark Mukherjee, an assistant professor at the Virginia Tech Carilion Research Institute, gave a talk at the International Conference on Psychology, Autism and Alzheimer’s Disease, the 136th OMICS Group Conference, on September 30.

  • September

    • Michael Friedlander and Audra Van Wart spearhead BEST award

      Virginia Tech has been named one of ten academic institutions to receive a first-of-its-kind grant from the National Institutes of Health to help prepare graduate students and postdoctoral scholars for biomedical research careers that could take them beyond conventional academic research. The funding will begin October 1, and the ten institutions will share approximately $3.7 million for the current fiscal year. The awards are for five years.

      Spearheading the Broadening Experience in Scientific Training (BEST) award at Virginia Tech are Michael Friedlander, associate provost for health sciences at Virginia Tech and executive director of the Virginia Tech Carilion Research Institute, and Audra Van Wart, director of education and training at the Virginia Tech Carilion Research Institute.

    • Harry Dorn and team find evidence of 'buckyball' formation

      Researchers at the Virginia Tech Carilion Research Institute have reported the first experimental evidence that supports the theory that a soccer ball-shaped nanoparticle, commonly called a buckyball, is the result of a breakdown of larger structures rather than being built atom-by-atom from the ground up.

    • Harry Dorn reappointed as Dr. A.C. Lilly Jr. Faculty Fellow in Nanoscience

      Harry Dorn, a professor at the Virginia Tech Carilion Research Institute and a professor of chemistry in the College of Science at Virginia Tech, has been reappointed the Dr. A.C. Lilly Jr. Faculty Fellow in Nanoscience by the Virginia Tech Board of Visitors.

    • Gregorio Valdez presents lectures at the National Institutes of Health and international conferences in Brazil

      Gregorio Valdez, an assistant professor at the Virginia Tech Carilion Research Institute, has had a busy schedule this past month, having traveled the world to give several talks on his research regarding neuromuscular junctions.

    • Warren Bickel wins major grant for smoking cessation research

      Warren Bickel, an internationally recognized addiction expert at the Virginia Tech Carilion Research Institute, recently received a $3.2-million grant from the National Institute on Drug Abuse for research on improving self-control in smokers seeking to quit cigarettes. The grant will provide between $573,000 and $716,000 a year over a five-year period to develop innovative new ways to enhance the smokers’ ability to abstain from acting on their nicotine cravings.

    • Rosalyn Moran begins recruitment for a new study

      Rosalyn Moran, an assistant professor at the Virginia Tech Carilion Research Institute, has launched a recruitment campaign for a new study, "Brain Connectivity Supporting Memories Across the Lifespan." Study participants ranging from 18 to 80 years old will perform a simple memory task during a brain scan.

  • August

    • Jamie Tyler’s research on ultrasound neuromodulation featured in New Scientist

      The research of Jamie Tyler, assistant professor at the Virginia Tech Carilion Research Institute, is featured in a three-page article in today’s issue of New Scientist magazine on how minute physical perturbations appear to play a large role in how neurons interact with each other. The article is, in part, based on Tyler’s recent article published in Nature Reviews Neuroscience outlining the current state of the field.

    • Michael Friedlander and Audra Van Wart lead award-winning graduate program

      A new graduate program at Virginia Tech is garnering national acclaim, and it hasn’t even enrolled its first student yet. The Association of American Medical Colleges announced the recipients of its second annual Award for Innovative Institutional Partnerships in Research and Research-focused Training. Out of 35 national submissions, Virginia Tech’s new doctor of philosophy degree program in Translational Biology, Medicine, and Health was a semi-finalist, reaching the top four of an elite, competitive field.

    • Read Montague to present latest advances in computational neuroscience at workshop in Japan

      Read Montague, director of the Computational Psychiatry Unit at the Virginia Tech Carilion Research Institute, will present a talk about his research program on deep phenotyping of human behavior and brain function on August 30, at a workshop, “Mechanism of Brain and Mind,” in Nagoya, Japan.

  • June

  • May

  • April

  • March

  • February

    • Zhi Sheng uncovers molecular mechanism mediating natural cell death

      Zhi Sheng, an assistant professor at the Virginia Tech Carilion Research Institute, has published a paper in the journal Apoptosis through a collaboration with colleagues in Korea. The paper describes the discovery of the molecular mechanism that splices RNA and, in turn, controls the self-destruction of cells, otherwise known as apoptosis.

    • Craig Ramey applauds call for universal access to high-quality preschool

      Craig Ramey, PhD, the founder of a decades-long scientific study that has proved the enduring benefits of early education, today applauded President Obama’s call for universal access to high-quality preschool in the United States.