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July 2017

University of Massachusetts engineer Jae-Hwang Lee (M2M) has co-authored a research article on cold spray additive manufacturing that seeks to provide a fundamental understanding of the process. Cold spray takes micron-sized particles and accelerates them at supersonic velocities through a specially designed rocket nozzle to strike the surface of a receiving material. The impacting particles undergo extreme plastic deformation and then consolidate, thus forming a dense coating with a near net-shaped quality. The findings are published in the journal Nature Scientific Report.

Molecular biologists Alice Cheung (M2M) and Hen-Ming Wu, both of biochemistry and molecular biology, recently were awarded a combined $1.35 million from the National Science Foundation’s Division of Integrative and Organismal Systems and Division of Molecular and Cellular Biosciences to support their continued work in plant male-female interactions, which lead to fertilization and seed production, and in exploring basic mechanisms in plant signal transduction pathways.

Li-Jun Ma, biochemistry and molecular biology and M2M, an expert in fungal comparative genomics, has received a five-year, $880,000 National Science Foundation Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) grant to address Pathogenic fungi, the kind that cause wilt diseases in more than 100 plants species, can pose serious threats to agricultural productivity. The Fusarium oxysporum fungus causes wilt in plant species including tomato, cotton, watermelon and banana, costing farmers billions of dollars in losses worldwide each year. The disease is difficult to control.

David Julian McClements, food science, CBD and M2M, has joined the scientific advisory council of the Nature’s Bounty Company. Members are chosen for their expertise in different areas of science and nutrition. McClements specializes in developing food-based delivery systems for bioactive components, such as vitamins and neutraceuticals.

David Sela, food science, CBD and M2M, and colleagues report the first evidence that certain beneficial gut bacteria are able to grow when fed a carbohydrate found in cranberries and further, that they exhibit a special non-typical metabolism.

R. Thomas Zoeller, biology and M2M, says the discovery that a common blood sugar medication or an extra dose of a thyroid hormone can reverse some signs fetal alcohol syndrome in rates may help scientists find an effective treatment for fetal alcohol spectrum disorders in humans.