The last few years have seen a revolution in the way that diagnosticians evaluate the genetic mechanisms that cause debilitating congenital abnormalities from heart defects to intellectual disability. Whole genome sequencing (WGS) is just around the corner, and in about a third of cases it finds a strong candidate mutation, sometimes suggesting new treatment options, but otherwise bringing understanding to parents. But what about all of the other cases?
Assistant professor Chong Shin and members of her lab discovered Fhl1b as a novel target of Bone morphogenetic protein (Bmp) signaling. Bmp signaling has been shown to play an essential role in inducing the liver at the expense of pancreas in different animal models. Nevertheless, the identity of downstream gene regulatory networks of Bmp signaling that specify the liver to the detriment of pancreas remains elusive. Moreover, the key question of whether Bmp signaling suppresses pancreas gene program keeping progenitors competent to differentiate into the liver or directly induces the liver gene program has not yet been answered.
Dr. Frank Stewart in the School of Biology was recently awarded a grant from the Georgia Improving Teacher Quality (ITQ) Grants Program to renew the Summer Workshop in Marine Science (SWiMS). Coral reef collapse, oil spills, and sea level rise are among the most pressing science topics facing policymakers, researchers, and the general public. Understanding these and other issues affecting our oceans is critical to the preservation of marine resources and to a broad education in science. The goal of SWiMS is to use marine science research at Georgia Tech to enhance standards in middle and high school Life and Earth Science education.
The Torres lab has been awarded a four year, $1.2 million grant by the National Institutes of General Medical Sciences to investigate a newly discovered regulatory mechanism that controls G protein signaling, a process essential for the transduction of extracellular signals (such as hormones, neurotransmitters, and photons of light), and the target of most pharmaceutical drugs.
In the water above natural oil seeps in the Gulf of Mexico, where oil and gas bubbles rise almost a mile to break at the surface, scientists from the Georgia Institute of Technology, Columbia University and Florida State University have discovered something unusual: phytoplankton, tiny microbes at the base of the marine food chain, are thriving.
Marine microorganisms play a critical role in capturing atmospheric carbon, but a new study finds much less certainty than previously believed about the populations of the viruses that infect these important organisms.
Associate Professor Joshua Weitz has published the first comprehensive book on quantitative viral biology. Quantitative Viral Ecology: Dynamics of Viruses and Their Microbial Hosts establishes a theoretical foundation for modeling and predicting the ecological and evolutionary dynamics that result from the interaction between viruses and their microbial hosts. These go well beyond the viruses we most often think of—influenza, HIV, and Ebola—and include the diverse and abundant viruses that infect single-celled microbes found in oceans, lakes, plants, soil, and animal-associated microbiomes.
Fellows are elected by their peers in recognition of distinguished contributions to science or its application.
Studying blood serum compounds of different molecular weights has led scientists to a set of biomarkers that may enable development of a highly accurate screening test for early-stage ovarian cancer.
Using large-scale computer modeling, researchers have shown the effects of confinement on macromolecules inside cells – and taken the first steps toward simulating a living cell, a capability that could allow them to ask “what-if” questions impossible to ask in real organisms.