Dr. Gerald Hart will be visiting K-State, February 27-29, as the 2008 KSU Alumni Association Fellow for Arts and Sciences.  Dr. Hart was Dr. Gary Conrad’s first doctoral student and is currently the Director of the Department of Biological Chemistry at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine.  He will be giving a seminar titled, Dynamic Crosstalk Between GlcNAcylation and Phosphorylation: Roles in Signaling, Transcription and Human Disease,” on Friday, February 29, at 4:00pm,  in Ackert Hall, Room 221.


Drs. Bruce Glymour, Ron Downey, Amy Lara, David Rintoul, Bill Schenck-Hamlin, Scott Tanona, Larry Weaver, and Michael Smith (PhD student) were awarded $100,000 by the National Science Foundation for “Ethics Education in Science and Engineering.”  The focus of this research is to identify appropriate ways scientists can communicate more effectively with the lay public.


Scott McCall (undergraduate biology major) was one of four K-State students nominated for a 2008 Goldwater Scholarship, a national competition for students who major in science, mathematics or engineering and plan a career in research.  Scott works in Dr. Gary Conrad’s lab on a project involving elucidating the mechanisms of corneal cross-linking as part of surgical healing after LASIK surgery. He plans on pursuing that topic this summer with Dr. Conrad at the Mount Desert Island Biological Laboratory in Bar Harbor, Maine.


The Larry G. Williams Scholarship has been recently established, to honor Dr. Williams, who recently retired after 37 years of advising, teaching, and serving as Associate Director of Biology and Director of Undergraduate Studies.  If you would like to participate in establishing this scholarship, honoring Larry, and sharing in providing opportunities for students, you can make a contribution to this fund by contacting the Division office.


Dana Townsend (Human Body Instructor in the division) was conferred the degree of Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Physiology by Kansas State University, Department of Anatomy and Physiology in the College of Veterinary Medicine, December 2007.  Dana’s major professor was Dr. Thomas J. Barstow, and her dissertation was titled, “Insulin Resistance And Concomitant Macro- And Microvascular Dysfunction In Normoglycemic College-Age Subjects With A Family History Of Type 2 Diabetes.”


Dr. Richard Jeannotte received a KSU Ecological Genomics Institute Collaborative Scholar Fund Award for visiting the Soybean Free Air Concentration Enrichment (SoyFACE) facility, in summer 2007.  SoyFACE is an innovative facility for growing crops under production field conditions in an atmosphere that is anticipated for the middle of this century, namely one with higher levels of carbon dioxide and ozone.  In addition, Richard received the KSU Ecological Genomics Institute travel award for attending and presenting a poster at the American Society of Agronomy, Crop Science Society of America, and Soil Science Society of America (ASA-CSSA-SSSA) International Annual Meeting, New Orleans, Louisiana, November 4-8, 2007.


Dr. Giorgis Mezengie received a Terry C. Johnson Cancer Center Travel Award ($1,200) to attend the 56th American Society for Mass Spectrometry Conference on Mass Spectrometry and Allied Topics, to be held June 1-5, 2008, in Denver, CO.


Robb Kaler (advisor Dr. Brett Sandercock) won the Best Student Presentation at the Annual Meeting of The Wildlife Society, Tucson, AZ, September 22-26, 2007.


Khara Strum (advisor Dr. Brett Sandercock) won the Best Student Paper Award at the Kansas Ornithological Society Meeting, September 2007.

The following awards were presented to members of the Division of Biology during spring 2007:

Dr. Gary Conrad2007 Dolph Simons Award (Higuchi/Endowment Association Research Achievement Award)

Dr. David Rintoul2007 Commerce Bank Outstanding Undergraduate Teaching Award

Dr. Lorena Passarelli - 2007 Commerce Bank Presidential Faculty and Staff Award for Distinguished Services to Historically Underrepresented Students

Dr. Lorena Passarelli2007 Presidential Distinguished Faculty Award for Mentoring of Undergraduate Students in Research

Caroline Delandre (GRA) 2007 Presidential Awards for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching

Dr. Rollie Clem2007 Kansas IDeA Network of Biomedical Research Excellence (K-INBRE) Faculty Scholar Award

Dr. Walter Dodds – 2007 Outstanding Graduate Faculty Award (Biology Graduate Student Association; article about this award can be found in Nature 447:610)

The following Division of Biology Graduate Student Awards were presented during spring 2007:  

Lance Thurlow received the H. Henley Haymaker Award for Research Excellence in Graduate Research, presented for outstanding research by a graduate student with more than 2 years in the Division of Biology. A student must also give a research presentation at the Division of Biology Graduate Research Forum to qualify for this award.  

Rob Kaler received the James Ackert Scientific Award, presented for outstanding research by a graduate student with less than 2 years in the Division of Biology. A student must also give a research presentation at the Division of Biology Graduate Research Forum to qualify for this award.  

Jayne Jonas received the Chris Edler Memorial Scholarship, presented to a graduate student that works on Konza who has demonstrated strong research, teaching and service to Konza Prairie. A student must also give a research presentation at the Division of Biology Graduate Research Forum to qualify for this award.  

Caroline Delandre received the Michael Scott Watkins Award, presented for outstanding teaching in the Division of Biology.

Justin Murdock received the John C. Frazier Memorial Botanical Award, presented for outstanding research by a graduate student from the Division of Biology in Plant Science. A student must also give a research presentation at the Division of Biology Graduate Research Forum to qualify for this award.  

Linglin Xie received the L. Evans Roth Biology Award, presented for outstanding research by a graduate student from the Division of Biology in Molecular, Cellular and Developmental Biology.  A student must also give a research presentation at the Division of Biology Graduate Research Forum to qualify for this award.

The following Division of Biology Undergraduate Student Awards were presented during spring 2007:  

The H. Henley Haymaker Award for Excellence in Biology was presented to the outstanding graduating senior in Biology; dual recipients were Erica Cain (Microbiology/French [minor]) and Bridget McGuire (Microbiology/Pre-Medicine/Theatre [minor]).


Nine students received Most Promising Student Awards, presented to outstanding undergraduate students. These awards were entirely funded by faculty contributions and chosen on the criteria of academic performance, activities (including research), letters of recommendation, and performance in an interview by a faculty panel. Recipients were:


Casey Anderson, JR, Biology/Pre-Medicine         
Megan Bindel, JR, Biology/Geography/Natural Resources & Environmental Sciences

Erinn Bock, JR, Fisheries & Wildlife Biology/English

Morgan Bonds, SR, Biology/Chemistry/Pre-Medicine

Jennifer Buseman, JR, Microbiology/Pre-Medicine/Spanish (minor)/Leadership Studies (minor)

Tamara Fischer, SO, Microbiology

Jenna Kennedy, SR, Microbiology/Pre-Medicine/Natural Resources & Environmental Sciences

Leah Kuhlmann, SO, Biology/Pre-Medicine

Kaley Morris, JR, Biology/Pre-Medicine/Leadership Studies (minor)


Jenna Kennedy, a senior in Microbiology, Natural Resources and Environmental Sciences, and Pre-Medicine was recognized as a Harry S. Truman Scholar in the spring of 2007.  The Truman Scholarship Foundation was established to find and recognize college juniors with exceptional leadership potential who are committed to careers in government, the nonprofit or advocacy sectors, education or elsewhere in the public service.  K-State remains first in the nation among public universities in producing Truman scholars since the first scholarships were awarded in 1977.  Jenna currently is a member of the Dr. Keith Chapes laboratory where she is studying the role of genes in controlling infection and cell function.





K.L Pitts, C. Paukert, and J. Whittier presented, “Development and assessment of an ecological risk index for fishes in the Verde River Basin, Arizona,” at the  Midwest Fish and Wildlife Conference, Madison, WI, December 10, 2007.


B.K. Sandercock, S.M. Wisely, A.J. Gregory, and L.B. McNew presented, “Effects of wind power development on the population genetics and demography of Greater Prairie-chickens in Kansas,” at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory and National Wind Coordinating Collaborative Fall Meeting, Golden, CO, November, 2007.


K.M. Strum, B.K. Sandercock, M.J. Hooper, K.A. Johnson, R.B. Lanctot, and M.E. Zaccagnini presented, “Cholinesterase activity and pesticide exposure in migratory shorebirds on the South American non-breeding grounds,” at the 28th Annual Meeting of the Society for Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry, Milwaukee, WI, November 11-15, 2007.


K.M. Strum, B.K. Sandercock, M.J. Hooper, K.A. Johnson, and R.B. Lanctot presented, “Keep off the grass? Evaluating pesticide exposure in migrating shorebirds using turf grass farms,” at the Kansas Ornithological Society Meeting, Manhattan, KS, September 2007. (Best Student Paper Award).


The following presentations were made at the Prairie Grouse Technical Council Meeting (27th), Chamberlain, SD, October 8-10, 2007:


·         A.J. Gregory, L.B. McNew, S.M. Wisely, and B.K. Sandercock - “Landscape heterogeneity and anthropogenic disturbance may be driving Greater Prairie-chicken genetic structure in the Flint Hills of Kansas.”

·         A.J. Gregory, J.K. Nooker, B.K. Sandercock, and S.M. Wisely - “Genetic insights into lekking behavior: implications for management of Greater Prairie-chickens in Kansas.”

·         L.B. McNew, A.J. Gregory, and B.K. Sandercock“Effects of wind power development on the demography of Greater Prairie-chickens: pre-construction vital rates from the Flint Hills.”

·         J.K. Nooker, and B.K. Sandercock“Breeding ecology of female Greater Prairie-chickens in unfragmented grasslands of Kansas.”


E. Cheng, S. Alavi, Y. Shi, R. Jeannotte, and R. Welti presented, “Encapsulation of fish oil in starch matrices utilizing extrusion processing,” at the  American Association of Cereal Chemists (AACC)  International Annual Meeting, San Antonio, TX, October 7-10, 2007.


R. Jeannotte, D.S. Roy, J.K. Ward, D.L. Claycamp, and R. Welti presented a poster titled, “Plant Adaptation to Elevated Carbon Dioxide: Using a Lipidomic Approach to Identify Alterations in Lipid Metabolism and Signaling in Arabidopsis Thaliana,” and S.K. Subramanian, P.V.V. Prasad, R. Jeannotte, and Mitchell Tuinstra presented, “Physiological and biochemical responses of grain sorghum to foliar application of glycine betaine under drought stress,” at the ASA-CSSA-SSSA International Annual Meeting, New Orleans, LA, November 4-8, 2007.


H. Zhao, S.K. Battina, K. Lou, A.L Jimenez, J. Desper, E.M. Perchellet, J.P.Perchellet, P.K. Chiang, and D.H. Hua presented, “Total syntheses of (±)-ovalicin, C4(S*)-isomer, and its C5-analogs and anti-trypanosomal activities,” at the 42nd Midwest Regional Meeting of the American Chemical Society, Kansas City, MO, November 7-10, 2007.

Jesse Nippert, Jim Butler, Gerard Kluitenberg, and Don Whittemore presented, “Tamarix ramosissima physiology and groundwater use during a record drought,” at the Geological Society of America Annual Meeting, Denver, CO, October 29, 2007.


The K-State Ecological Genomics Institute  (co-directed by Drs. Loretta Johnson and Michael Herman) sponsored the 5th Annual Genes in Ecology, Ecology in Genes Symposium, in Kansas City, November 9-11, 2007.  The symposium, funded by K-State Targeted Excellence, showcased nationally-acclaimed scientists and researchers in the emerging field of ecological genomics and provided opportunities for researchers to share ideas and present their current research.  Over 140 scientists and educators from 27 states and Sweden attended the conference, representing 54 individual universities and organizations.  The following K-State Biology faculty/staff gave poster presentations and/or spoke at the Symposium:


Kimberly With presented the seminar, “Are the Flint Hills a population source…or sink…for grassland birds?” to the Department of Zoology at the University of Oklahoma, October 24, 2007.


Page E. Klug and Kimberly A. With presented, Habitat Overlap in Nesting Grassland birds and their Snake Predators,” at the Kansas Ornithological Society Annual Meeting, October 2007. (Award for Best PhD Student Presentation)


Page E. Klug and Kimberly A. With presented, ”Evaluation of Habitat Overlap in Nesting Grassland birds and their Snake Predators,” at the Kansas Herpetological Society 34th Annual Meeting, November 2007. (Alan H. Kamb Award for Research on Kansas Snakes, $150)


Donald P. Althoff and Philip S. Gipson presented a poster titled, “Breeding Chronology and Success of Grasshopper Sparrows and Eastern Meadowlarks on A Military Training Landscape: Implications for Management,” at the Joint Meeting of the Society for Range Management and the American Forage and Grassland Council, Louisville, KY, January 26-31, 2008.


Giridara-Kumar Surabhi, Sanjay Kumar, Dan DeLaughter, Katie Clowers, Nausheen Alam, Loretta Johnson, and Jyoti Shah presented, “Environmental and ecological controls on gene expression of root processes in prairie plants,” at the Convergence of Genomics and the Land-Grant Mission: Emerging Trends in the Application of Genomics in Agricultural Research Conference, Purdue University, September 10-12, 2007.

Giridara-Kumar Surabhi, Sanjay Kumar, Dan DeLaughter, Katie Clowers, Nausheen Alam, Loretta Johnson, and  Jyoti Shah presented “Environmental and ecological controls on gene expression of root processes in prairie plants,” at the American Society of Plant Biologists, Chicago, IL July 7-11, 2007. (Funded by $610 travel grant from the K-State Ecological Genomics Institute).





Amela-Cortés, C, M. Rezende, T. Yakovleva, D. Papa, E. Perchellet, J.P. Perchellet, S.C. Vigil-Cruz.  2007.  Structure-activity relationship studies of a novel CXCR4 chemokine antagonist reveal unique activity profile.  In: Blondelle S (ed.), Understanding Biology Using Peptides, Proceedings of the 19th American Peptide Symposium. American Peptide Society 9: 475-476.

Bonds, M., J. Sands, W. Poulson, C. Harvey, and T.L. Von Ohlen.  2007.  A genetic screen for regulators of ind expression identifies shrew as encoding a novel twisted gastrulation-like protein involved in Dpp signaling. Dev Dyn 236: 3524-3531.


Brown, Z., A. Ponce, K. Lampi, L. Hancock, and L. Takemoto.  2007.  Differential Binding of Mutant (R116C) and Wildtype AlphaA Crystallin to Actin. Current Eye Research 32(12): 1051-1054.


Kosciuch, K.L., and B.K. Sandercock.  2008.  Cowbird removals unexpectedly increase productivity of a brood parasite and their songbird host.  Ecological Applications, in press.


Del Papa, M.F., L.E. Hancock, V.C. Thomas, and M. Perego.  2007.  Full activation of Enterococcus faecalis gelatinase by a C-terminal proteolytic cleavageJournal of Bacteriology 189(24): 8835-8843.


Li, W, R. Wang, M. Li, L. Li, C. Wang, R. Welti, and X. Wang.  2008.  Differential degradation of extraplastidic and plastidic lipids during freezing and post-freezing recovery in Arabidopsis thaliana.  J. Biol. Chem. 283: 461-468.


Matlack, R.S., D.W. Kaufman, and G.A. Kaufman.  2008.  Influence of woody vegetation on small mammals in tallgrass prairie.  American Midland Naturalist, in press.


Perchellet, E.M., Y. Wang, K. Lou, H. Zhao, S.K. Battina, D.H. Hua, and J.P. Perchellet.  2007.   Antitumor triptycene analogs directly interact with isolated mitochondria to rapidly trigger markers of permeability transitionAnticancer Res 27: 3259-3272.

Perchellet, E.M., Y. Wang, K. Lou, H. Zhao, S.K. Battina, D.H. Hua, and J.P. Perchellet.  2007.   Novel substituted 1,4-anthracenediones with antitumor activity directly induce permeability transition in isolated mitochondriaInt J Oncology 31: 1231-1241.

Sandercock, B.K., W.E. Jensen, C.K. Williams and R.D. Applegate.  2008. Demographic sensitivity of population change in the Northern Bobwhite.  Journal of Wildlife Management, in press.


Scheiman, D.M., J.B. Dunning, Jr., and K. A. With.  2007.  Metapopulation dynamics of Bobolinks occupying agricultural grasslands in the Midwestern United States.   American Midland Naturalist 158: 415-423.


Welti, R., E. Mui, A. Sparks, S. Wernimont, G. Isaac, M. Kirisits, M. Roth, C.W. Roberts, C. Botté, E. Maréchal, and R. McLeod.  2007.  Lipidomic Analysis of Toxoplasma gondii Reveals Unusual Polar Lipids Biochemistry 46: 13882-13890.


Zhu, L., X. Liu, X. Liu, R. Jeannotte, J.C. Reese, M. Harris, J.J. Stuart, and M.-S. Chen.  2008.  Hessian fly (Mayetiola destructor) attack causes a dramatic shift in carbon and nitrogen metabolism in wheat.  Molecular Plant Microbe Interactions 21: 70-78.





The Division of Biology 34th Annual Graduate Student Research Forum – March 8, 2008, K-State Union, Big 12 Room, 8:30 AM.


The K-State Functional Genomics Consortium (an initiative of the Targeted Excellence Program) will be presenting its 2008 Spring Symposium on March 5.  The symposium will be held in the K-State Student Union Big Twelve Room from 8:00 to 5:00.  We have an exciting lineup of speakers! Richard Gross of Washington University in St. Louis will tell us how “Shotgun Lipidomics” have led to a better understanding of the important roles of lipids in development of diabetic cardiomyopathy.  Gregg How of Michigan State University will tell us about his lab’s work to define molecular signaling events that control defense gene expression in response to pest attacks.  Plus more!  The mission of the FGC is to build research productivity through education, collaboration and full utilization of the Functional Genomic Laboratories at Kansas State University. 


Arthropod Genomics Symposium, “New Insights from Arthropod Genomes” – April 11-13, 2008, Marriott Hotel in Downtown Kansas City, MO.  Additional workshops are scheduled for the evenings of April 10-11.

Ecological Genomics Symposium, “Genes in Ecology, Ecology in Genes” – November 14-16, 2008, InterContinental Hotel, Kansas City, MO.

The Division of Biology sponsors departmental seminars on most Fridays at 4:00 PM throughout the semester (occasionally other days during the week).  For an updated list of seminars visit: www.ksu.edu/biology/news.html.