Husky Highlights Seminar Series
Husky Highlights is a seminar series meeting several times a quarter to feature UW Bothell faculty and staff who are making advances in research, scholarship and creative practice. These events are provided virtually and open to the public. Each speaker will present for about 20 minutes with a 10 minute Q&A section afterward. Recordings may be available, depending on speaker preference.
First Virtual Presentation: Tuesday, October 19 3:30-5PM
Thanks to our two speakers covering two great presentations! Registration is required for this free event through Zoom. Questions about this presentation can be emailed to Sarah Verlinde-Azofeifa at email@example.com.
Comparing the function of genes in different crop plants to study how plants develop under environmental stress
PI: Thelma F. Madzima, Ph.D. Assistant Professor; Division of Biological Sciences, School of STEM
In biology, genetic techniques allow biologists to determine the function of a gene by measuring the outcome (phenotype) when the function of the gene is removed, e.g., though a mutation. Significant technical advances in the field of biotechnology, including genome sequencing and sophisticated gene-editing technologies, allow us to create mutations targeting specific genes of interest in variety of organisms.
To date, my research program has been using the crop plant Zea mays (maize, corn) as a model organism of study. However, there are certain challenges in studying maize that are not conducive to the types of research questions I plan to pursue, and conducting research at UW Bothell, a PUI on the quarter system. Through this UW Bothell SRCP Seed Grant, I am transitioning and advancing my research program to using the emerging model plant Setaria viridis (green foxtail millet) and to develop a genetic toolbox of mutant stocks in Setaria based on genes of interest previously identified in maize. The long-term goal of my research program is to understand how epigenetic regulatory mechanisms facilitate plant development under normal and environmentally stressful conditions, with the ultimate goal of manipulating these processes as needed for crop improvement. The specific mechanisms of these responses are currently poorly understood, especially in crop plants that play a major role in stabilizing global food security
The Lake Forest Park Community Bird Project: Assessing the Long-Term Impacts of Urbanization on Bird Species Diversity and Behavior
PI: Douglas Wacker, Ph.D. Associate Professor, Division of Biological Sciences, School of STEM
The Community Bird Project examines the intersecting effects of urbanization and changing habitat on wildlife through long-term monitoring of bird species diversity and behavior in parks and green spaces. Survey sites are located within Lake Forest Park, WA, a suburb of Seattle with a rich history of environmental stewardship. Despite maintaining a relatively steady population over the last 20 years, Lake Forest Park is currently experiencing increased development pressure. In 2020, an SRCP seed grant funded the establishment of seasonal surveys in the 11 parks and green spaces in this community, as well as in urban, suburban, and rural companion sites. Additional support is needed to create a long-term dataset that will help inform future park establishment and management decisions. In this talk, I’ll discuss the justification for our research, the first year of data collection, the role of UWB undergraduate researchers, and a growing community engagement component of this project