The Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry is pleased to announce that Julia Widom will be joining the faculty this fall as an Assistant Professor in the physical chemistry division.
Dr. Widom performed her postdoctoral research in the laboratory of Dr. Nils Walter at the University of Michigan, using single-molecule fluorescence microscopy to study how the structures that RNA molecules fold into affect their ability to regulate gene expression. Her research at UO will combine single-molecule and ultrafast spectroscopy to probe RNA structure and dynamics in complex macromolecular machines. She will also use RNA as a scaffold for chromophore arrays, developing methods that will enable rapid screening of the optical properties of a diverse library of arrays.
Collaborative research teams examining everything from healthcare-associated infections to carbon nanotubes have been awarded funding to jump-start research projects as part of the 2018 OHSU-UO Collaborative Seed Grant program.
Ten teams were chosen as part of the program, which creates new collaborations between researchers at Oregon Health & Science University and the University of Oregon.
Ramesh Jasti‘s team will examine how nanohoops can be used for multiplexed Biological imaging, and Michael Pluth will be part of the Oregon Translational Chemical Biology working group.
UO and Oregon State University scientists were baffled. New testing of mixtures of nanoparticles had led to an 88 percent mortality rate in zebrafish embryos, after earlier testing had found the materials to be free of toxins.
Looking more extensively, they found that a new automated delivery system, meant to speed the mixing of products for testing in the fish, created a synergistic, or multiplying, effect that triggered the toxicity.
Beginning in 2015, the University of Oregon launched the Sustainability Award Program to recognize individuals whose contributions deepen our culture of sustainability across a range of institutional activities.
The 2018 Sustainability Award recipients were announced at an awards ceremony on May 30th, 2018. Two Chemistry and Biochemistry faculty members were among the award recipients.
Julie Haack was presented with the Excellence in Teaching Award. Sponsored by the Office of the Provost and the Teaching Engagement Program, this award recognizes faculty who have developed pedagogy and curriculum which reinforce and advance principles of sustainability through course design and instruction. Dr. Haack was selected for her national leadership in the teaching of green chemistry, her multidisciplinary partnerships across UO’s schools and colleges, and for developing courses and workshops with a focus on green chemistry and life cycle thinking, including the UO’s Sustainable Invention Immersion Week
Jim Hutchison received the Research Innovation Award, which is sponsored by the Associate Vice President for Innovation. This award recognizes University of Oregon projects whose innovations were developed in the course of UO research and are now offered as commercially available products or services that improve sustainability. DeFUNKify laundry products, which were developed as a result of research discoveries made in the Hutchison Lab, exemplify this type of innovation. Professor Hutchison also founded the first center for green nanoscience, the Safer Nanomaterials and Nanomanufacturing Initiative (SNNI). The goals of SNNI are to develop new nanomaterials and nanomanufacturing approaches that offer a high level of performance, yet pose minimal harm to human health or the environment.
To learn more about the UO Sustainability Award Program, visit bit.ly/2K3habY or read about the 2018 awards in AroundtheO
Chemistry and Biochemistry’s Ramesh Jasti and Ken Prehoda are among fifteen faculty members selected for the prestigious University of Oregon Fund for Faculty Excellence Awards.
The Fund for Faculty Excellence Awards was established in 2006 through the support of Lorry Lokey and is designed to recognize, reward and retain nationally competitive faculty members who have a record of excellence in research, scholarship, creative accomplishment and education. The awards provide faculty members with a $20,000 salary supplement or $30,000 for research support.
UO Chemistry and Biochemistry Senior Instructor Deborah Exton is among three faculty members in the College of Arts and Sciences that have been recognized for excellence in teaching as recipients of this year’s Tykeson Teaching Awards.
UO Chemistry and Biochemistry faculty Darren Johnson is the first recipient of the Bradshaw and Holzapfel Research Professorship in Transformational Science and Mathematics. The endowed professorship was established by UO biology professor William Bradshaw and researcher Christina Holzapfel in the UO Institute of Ecology and Evolution.
Sustainable Invention Immersion Week is a collaborative program sponsored by the University of Oregon’s Lundquist Center for Entrepreneurship and the Tyler Invention Greenhouse with partners from the School of Journalism and Communication, the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, and the College of Design. UO Chemistry and Biochemistry’s Julie Haack is a Program Director and Faculty Facilitator for the event.
2018 – The Do More With Less Challenge: The more materials, the bigger the impact. There are many strategies for reducing the use of materials to meet human needs. Examples include eliminating the need for a lawn mower by inventing grass that only grows 2 inches and does not need to be mowed, or eliminating a window washing system by inventing self-cleaning glass. These kinds of innovations disrupt existing solutions requiring us to think in different ways.
Your challenge will be to design a new solution to address a need that eliminates or significantly reduces the problems associated with materials. The solution should be economically viable, socially acceptable and have a net positive environmental impact compared to existing products/processes.
UO Chemistry and Biochemistry faculty Julie Haack and Jim Hutchison will participate in a panel discussion titled “Disruptive Strategies for Product Innovation” on May 10, 2018 at the Oxford Hotel in Bend, Oregon.
The participating educators, scientists, and engineers who will seek to inspire the audience to consider new strategies for product design at the nexus of disruptive innovation, materials selection, and systems thinking that maximize product performance and minimize impacts.