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From the College of Natural Sciences
Computer Visionary

Computer Visionary

Dr. Chandra Bajaj E proteins arranged on the surface of the dengue fever virus. Binding pockets in the E protein are good targets for developing a drug that could disrupt conformational changes in the protein and stop the virus from entering the cell. Visualization has always been important to science. From Leonardo da Vinci’s detailed drawings of...Dr. Chandra Bajaj
Blast from the Past: Computing the Hard Way

Blast from the Past: Computing the Hard Way

Steve Ernst, Marc Hackert and Jon Robertus modeling proteins in 1978. Image courtesy Center for American History. When biochemists Marv Hackert, Jon Robertus and Steve Ernst began using the Vector General computer graphics system (pictured here) in 1978 to assist with modeling protein structures, it was at best a very limited and very expensive too...Steve Ernst, Marc Hackert and Jon Robertus modeling proteinsin 1978. Image courtesy Center for American History.
The Sound of Science

The Sound of Science

It’s taken a while for Josh Russell, a 37-year-old undergraduate in the College of Natural Sciences, to unify his interests in art, music, computers and science. A native of Galveston, Texas, Russell did his first stint as an undergraduate in the ’90s, earning a B.A. in photography from Southwestern University in Georgetown, Texas. After graduati...josh-russell
Life on the Outside: Shelley Payne

Life on the Outside: Shelley Payne

Shelley Payne, a member of the university’s Academy of Distinguished Teachers, started weaving not long after she arrived in Austin as an assistant professor. “I wanted something that I could easily do as a way to relax,” she says, “and I was fascinated with weaving and cloth and how you use a single material and yet get these intricate patterns to...Shelley_Payne_final
Tracing Our Ancestry with Genetics

Tracing Our Ancestry with Genetics

Dr. Spencer Wells, Biology '88, in Chad. Photo from National Geographic. Geneticist Dr. Spencer Wells (Biology, ’88) leads National Geographic’s ambitious Genographic Project, which uses participants’ DNA to map and trace migration patterns of humans who lived thousands of years ago. The five-year, $50 million effort aims to collect 100,000 DNA...Dr. Spencer Wells in Chad. Photo from National Geographic.
Wetlands Grow at MSI

Wetlands Grow at MSI

More than 100 volunteers converged upon the Marine Science Institute (MSI) on Planting Day in August to landscape the Wetlands Education Center with native marsh and sand dune flora. Participants included representatives from environmental, governmental and research entities, local, state and national officials, as well as teachers, students and fa...msi_vol2
Q & A with Uri Treisman

Q & A with Uri Treisman

Uri Treisman is a professor of mathematics and the executive director of the Charles A. Dana Center. Since Treisman founded the center in the 1980s, it has become a national leader in education policy and research. We sat down with Treisman, who was named a MacArthur Fellow (sometimes known as the MacArthur “genius” grant) in 1992, to talk about th...Uri Treisman
Visualizing Synapses

Visualizing Synapses

A 3-D reconstruction of a dendrite and its spines created by serial section transmission electron microscopy (ssTEM), a technique pioneered by Kristen Harris. Neurobiologist Kristen Harris recently joined the Center for Learning and Memory (CLM), and she brings with her a pioneering technique to study how neurons change and how the changes relat...A 3-D reconstruction of a dendrite and its spines created by serial section transmission electron microscopy (ssTEM), a technique pioneered by Kristen Harris.
Globetrotting: Kristina Schegel

Globetrotting: Kristina Schegel

I’m standing on Pipeline, a muddy, puddle-filled road that runs through Soberania National Park in Panama. Dr. Mike Ryan, doctoral student Rachel Page, post doc Kim Hoke, and I came to the road to look for the “foam nests” of túngara frogs. Male túngaras whip-up the meringue-like nests, which hold eggs deposited by their mates, through the eggbeate...schlegel_post
Liquid Bounce

Liquid Bounce

Physics graduate student Matt Thrasher and Professor Harry Swinney recently explored the phenomenon of liquid bouncing, where a falling stream of liquid bounces off the surface of the same liquid. In the video, you will see a stream of silicone oil after it has dropped into a tank of the same oil. The long stream of oil stretches to the right und...