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May 2016

Today a research group with expertise in protein folding at the University of Massachusetts Amherst led by biochemist Daniel Hebert reports for the first time how a key protein in the blood coagulation pathway folds to a higher-energy or “cocked” state, so it can function as a sort of “molecular mousetrap” and generate the work required to perform physiologically important functions. Details appear in an early online edition of Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Stephen M. Rich, Microbiology, and director of the Laboratory of Medical Zoology, says in 2014 he began seeing Lone Star ticks being sent for testing. The laboratory tests ticks to see if they are carrying a variety of diseases including Lyme disease.

The concern is intensified by the fact that the Lone Star, although not a carrier of Lyme disease like other ticks, is aggressive, tends to move in groups and has a nasty bite that can cause allergies to red meat and cats.

A Lone Star bite can also cause fever, headaches, nausea, weakness and fatigue in both dogs and humans.

David Julian McClements, professor of food science and an internationally recognized expert in the encapsulation and delivery of bioactive components, was honored by the American Oil Chemistry Society (AOCS) recently with its 2016 Scientific Award for work that has “taken the industry to the next level, advanced the quality and depth of the profession and leveraged their knowledge for the benefit of the society.”

The U.K. Royal Society of Chemistry’s (RSC) Organic Division announced today that it has selected Vincent Rotello, the Charles A. Goessmann Professor of Chemistry and a Distinguished Professor at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, to receive the 2016 Bioorganic Chemistry Award for his “pioneering research in using chemistry of nanomaterials to understand and modulate biological processes.”

The White House says it will propose more than $121 million in federal spending over the next two years at the Department of Energy, NASA, National Institutes of Health, National Science Foundation and U.S. Department of Agriculture, but the private spending is ready to go sooner.

Rebecca Spencer, Psychological and Brain Sciences, published a paper in Sensors entitled, "Reliability of Sleep Measures from Four Personal Health Monitoring Devices Compared to Research-Based Actigraphy and Polysomnography."

CPHM faculty members Patty Freedson, Katherine Boyer and Deepak Ganesan will be participating as moderators in the mini symposia program on Friday, May 20, 2016 in the Albert Sherman Center Auditorium (2nd floor) at University of Massachusetts Medical School.

Join the American Cancer Society and MassBio for the Eighth Annual Progress in Winning the War on Cancer Event: Epigenetics in Cancer.