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April 2017

The Association of Biomolecular Resource Facilities (ABRF) hosted its annual international symposium this past February in San Diego. The Association awarded Charlene Coleman of IALS an “ABRF Outstanding Scientist/Technologist Travel Award” which assists in offsetting the cost of attending the conference. The travel awards are granted to scientists and technologists who have made significant contributions to biomolecular research or institutions.

John "Jay" Schwartz, AcuityBio, Inc. published an article "So, You Think You Have an Idea: A Practical Risk Reduction-Conceptual Model for Academic Translational Research" Bioengineering 2017, 4(2), 29.

The article provides an overview and framework for academic researchers to use which will help them define the elements of a market-driven translational program.

Catrine Tudor-Locke, CPHM and kinesiology, has studied step-counts and their associated health benefits, says the perks seem to diminish the more walking you do. So while 15,000 is better for you than 10,000, “you get the biggest bang for your buck at the low end, or just getting off your couch and getting a few thousand when you used to get close to none,” she says. In other words, shoot for 15K, but if you don’t make it, don’t sweat it.

Jessica Schiffman, CPHM and assistant professor of chemical engineering, says using the nanofiber strips to prevent fouling and clogging of the membranes would be a high-technology improvement to what is already a widely used state-of-the-art water treatment method. She has been awarded a one-year, $100,000 grant from the National Science Foundation’s Chemical, Bioengineering, Environmental and Transport Systems division for the research.

The university has invested heavily in the initiative in recent years. Well over $100 million has been spent so far on new faculty positions, buildings, equipment, and other resources to usher promising new ideas from lab bench to marketplace.

Last fall, a $95 million Massachusetts Life Sciences grant (the largest ever to a state university) and $55 million of university funding backed the opening of the Institute for Applied Life Sciences, with 30 core facilities dedicated to develop new drug, drug delivery, and health-monitoring products.

Jessica Schiffman, CPHM and chemical engineering, is the recipient of the Barbara H. and Joseph I. Goldstein Outstanding Junior Faculty Award. She was cited by the selection committee for her outstanding record in research, teaching and service including the development of novel bioinspired materials from natural polymers and plant-derived agents.

Rebecca Ready, CPHM and associate professor and director of clinical training and clinical division head in psychological and brain sciences, gave an invited talk at the Connecticut Neuropsychological Society Meeting in Hartford on March 31 “Emotion regulation and cognition in older adults.”