Bio colloquium

Harvey Mudd College Biology Colloquium
Fall 2016

Colloquium starts at 4:15 pm on Wednesdays* in Big Beckman Auditorium.

(* except where noted)

(Beckman Auditorium is Beckman B126, in the basement opposite the central stairway in the Olin Building)

August 31: 
Introduction to senior thesis

September 7: 
Biology mixer

September 14: 
All about graduate school

September 21:
Dr. Sonia Rowley (Dept. of Geology and Geophysics, University of Hawaii)
Title: "Gorgonian coral responses to environmental change"

September 28:

October 5: 
Christina Frieder (Marine and Environmental Biology, USC)

October 12:

October 19: 
Senior thesis proposal presentations (Annisa Dea, Deniz Korman, and Nga Nguyen)

October 26: 
Senior thesis proposal presentations (Aaron Friend, Alice Szeliga, Philip Woods)

November 2:
Erin Wilson-Rankin (Department of Entomology, UC Riverside)
"Interactive effects of invasive rats and native Hawaiian birds on arboreal food webs"

November 9:
Prof. Andrew Bean
Departments of Neurobiology & Anatomy and Pediatrics
The University of Texas Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences at Houston
"The in’s and out’s of endocytic trafficking"

November 16: 
Hendrik Szurmant (College of Osteopathic Medicine of the Pacific, Western University of Health Sciences)

November 23: 
No colloquium--Thanksgiving

November 30:

Findley Finseth (Keck Science Department)

December 7:

Dr. Georgios Tsounis (CSU Northridge)
Title: "Octocoral success in degrading reefs: A case study in St John, US Virgin Islands"

HHMI Summer Seminar Series

Summer 2015

Seminars begin at 4:00 pm on Wednesdays, and rotate between Mudd, Pomona and Keck campuses.

Light refreshments available beginning at at 3:45 pm.

Wednesday, June 8: Dr. Melanie Moses

    Associate Professor of Computer Science, University of New Mexico

     Title: "Emergence, cooperation, and diversity: The evolution of natural and engineered swarms"

    Time and location: 4:00 pm in Shanahan Lecture Hall (Shanahan Teaching and Learning Center, Room 1430)

    Harvey Mudd Campus

Wednesday, June 15: Dr. Tim Lewis

    Professor of Mathematics, University of California, Davis

    Title: "Limb coordination in crustacean swimming: Neural mechanisms and mechanical implications"

    Time and location: 4:00 pm in Seaver North Auditorium

    Pomona College

Wednesday, June 22: Dr. N. Peter Reeves

    Assistant Professor of Osteopathic Surgical Specialties, Michigan State University

    Title: "Spine stability: Six blind men and an elephant"

    Time and location: 4:00 pm at the Kravis Center, Lower Court 62

    Claremont McKenna College

Wednesday, June 29: Dr. Parag Mallick

    Assistant Professor of Radiology, Stanford University

    Title: "Computational Systems Biology: Using Multiscale Modeling and Large-Scale Data Mining to Find Cancer BioMarkers"

    Time and location: 4:00 pm in Shanahan Lecture Hall (Shanahan Teaching and Learning Center, Room 1430)

    Harvey Mudd College

Wednesday, July 6: Dr. Jennifer Gremer

    Assistant Professor of Evolution and Ecology, University of California, Davis

    Title: "Plants that gamble: Bet hedging in Sonoran Desert winter annual plants"

    Time and location: 4:00 pm in Seaver North Auditorium

    Pomona College

Wednesday, July 13: Dr. Animesh Ray

    Professor and Director of PhD programs, Keck Graduate Institute

    Title: "Noncoding RNAs in melanoma: RNA as tumor suppressor and integrator"

    Time and location: 4:00 pm at the Kravis Center, Lower Court 62

    Claremont McKenna College

Harvey Mudd College Biology Colloquium
Spring 2016

Colloquium starts at 4:15 pm on Wednesdays* in Big Beckman Auditorium.

(* except where noted)

(Beckman Auditorium is Beckman 126, in the basement below the central stairway in the Olin Building)

January 20:

2016 Summer Research Opportunities in the Biology Department

January 27:

Prof. Stephanie Correa
Department of Integrative Biology and Physiology
Title: "Estrogen-responsive hypothalamic neurons controlling body weight in female mice"

February 3:

Prof. Paula Cannon
Department of Molecular Microbiology & Immunology
USC, Keck School of Medicine
Title:  Engineering an HIV-resistant immune system

February 10:

February 17:

Dr. Rhiannon Rognstad
Keck Science Department
Title: "Marine population connectivity: range boundaries and climate change"

February 24:

Philip Cheung HMC '96
Dart Neuroscience
Bioinformatics Adventures in the Drug Discovery Industry

March 2:

March 9:

Dr. Wolfgang Huber
Multi-omics and Statistical Computing group
European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL), Heidelberg, Germany
Title: "A New Approach to False Discovery Rates (FDR)"

March 23:

Prof. Karin Kram
Department of Biology
California State University, Dominguez Hills
Title: "Adaptation of E. coli to Long-Term Culture"

March 30:

Prof. Jessica Wu
Department of Computer Science
Title: Evolution at the Subgene Level: Characterizing Domain Rearrangements in the Drosophila Phylogeny

April 6:

Prof. Eugene Wu (HMC '98)
Department of Biology
University of Richmond
Title:  The inner workings of the DNA copying machine

April 13:

Dr. John Aldrich
W.M. Keck Science Department
Title:  Targeted genome elimination by a selfish chromosome in the parasitic wasp Nasonia vitripennis

April 20:

Dr. Sevan Suni
Department of Organismic and Evolutionary Biology
Harvard University
Applying evolutionary principles to pollination ecology in a changing world

April 27:

Dr. Robbie Wilson 
University of Queensland (Australia)
Title: Success in nature and sport: exploring the biological basis of excellence in physical activities

Abstract: All physical activities rely on a complex assortment of anatomical, physiological, motor and behavioural traits. Discovering the determinants of individual success in physical activities has become central to the study of adaptation because it allows one to understand the coevolution of organismal form and function in natural populations. In a similar way, determining the combination of traits most responsible for success in human functional tasks is of enormous interest to the sports industry for discovering and developing athletes and the health sciences for facilitating improved pathways of recovery following injury. But despite the parallels in research programs between the natural and health sciences, each discipline has operated in relative isolation. In this seminar, I will explore the parallel lines of research that explore the determinants of success in physical activites in two very different but complimentary study systems: (i) natural populations of the small carnivorous marsupial, the northern quoll (Dasyurus hallucatus) from tropical Australia, and (ii) semi-professional soccer players. The northern quoll (Dasyurus hallucatus) is the world’s largest semelparous mammal, which means mating is highly synchronous, males live for only one year, and all males undergo die-offs soon after reproduction. Given the importance of procuring mates in such a short period (approx. 2 weeks), the ability for males to win fights and cover long distances to find reproductively mature females is presumably of critical importance. Female quolls live for two to three years and their die-off occurs after the young are weaned - which is around four months after the mating season. Soccer is also ideal for a integrative studies of success because we can readily identify, isolate and quantify many of the possible underlying determinants of success among large numbers of individual players. Soccer is the world’s most popular team sport and is played by an estimated 240 million registered competitors and watched by more than a billion people worldwide. Using these two very different study systems, I will discuss the implications of my work for understanding the evolution and ecology of physical performance in nature.