Tag Archives: featured

Alexis Gambis ’03

Alexis came to Bard with equal passions for both science and the arts. He graduated from the Biology program in 2003, with his senior project dedicated to the reconstruction of microbial genome rearrangements in Chlamydia. After Bard, Alexis got a Masters degree in Bioinformatics from the University of Marne la Vallée, and then a PhD from the Rockefeller University, where he studied apoptosis in fruit flies.

During his graduate career, Alexis founded the Imagine Science Film Festival in New York, which celebrates films that feature science. The mission of the festival is “to bridge the gap between art and science through film, thereby transforming the way science is communicated to the public and encouraging collaboration across disciplines”.

In 2014 Alexis completed his first feature film, The Fly Room, parts of which were shot at Bard College.

Links:

Faculty Highlight: Special Issue on Antimicrobial Resistance

The spread of antibiotic resistance in human pathogens is one of the most urgent challenges in public health today. While the discovery of new drugs remains central in our fight against microbial infections, our ability to understand how antibiotic resistance evolves in the first place is crucial in the development of sound public health policies. In this Special Issue published in Evolutionary Applications, Dr. Perron, acting as guest-editor, present a collection of articles discussing the different contributions of evolutionary biology and ecology to help solving the current antibiotic crisis.

Web link: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/eva.2015.8.issue-3/issuetoc

Summer Research Poster Session

The Summer Research Poster Session happened in RKC on Sep 24. Students presented results of their summer projects, both from the Bard Summer Research Institute (BSRI) program, and from various external research internships. About eighty people attended the session, which was quite a crowd for this late hour, and some incredibly interesting conversations happened at the posters.

Tropical Ecology and Sustainability Studies in Montserrat

January Intersession 2016

The Bard College at Simon’s Rock program in Montserrat is an opportunity for students to engage both theoretically and practically in tropical ecology, conservation biology, and island and global sustainability issues. This year, in partnership with Marist College and Bard College, students will have the opportunity to study the island’s ecology, including endangered and endemic species; receive training in ecological survey methods; and participate in one of several opportunities for community service.

Program summary:

Dec. 27, 2015 – Jan. 20, 2016
Simon’s Rock, Marist College, and Bard College sophomores and above are eligible
$4000 includes room & board, and RT airfare from NYC to Montserrat
4 300-level science credits

Information sessions will be held on all three campuses in September.

Contact Info: Dr. Thomas Coote, Director of Sustainability Programming at Bard College at Simon’s Rock. email: tcoote@simons-rock.edu

Daniela Anderson ’12

Daniela Anderson came to Bard having recently visited leper colonies in Nepal, and received a grant through Bard’s Trustee Leader Scholar (TLS) Program to create a program that supports these colonies. Later in her undergraduate career, she and a friend bicycled across the US to raise awareness and funds for leper colonies. In the summer of her junior year, Daniela earned a competitive NSF-REU award to study genetics of cancer growth; her summer research grew into her senior project, which examined the effects of micro RNA on the differentiation of cancer cells as a means of making them susceptible to existing therapies. Daniela earned a prestigious Watson Fellowship, which funded her for a year following graduation to visit existing leper colonies around the world and learn about both the medical and human impacts of this disease, which still infects tens of thousands of people annually. She is planning to pursue medicine as a career.

Faculty research: Collision detection center in the tadpole brain

It was known for some time that Xenopus tadpoles try to avoid collisions with objects that approach them, but until now it was not quite clear what part of the brain detects potential collisions and makes the tadpole change its swimming trajectory. In this study Dr. Arseny Khakhalin shows that most likely this calculation happens in the midbrain region called the optic tectum.

Citation: Khakhalin AS, Koren D, Gu J, Xu H, Aizenman CD. (2014). Excitation and inhibition in recurrent networks mediate collision avoidance in Xenopus tadpoles. European Journal of Neuroscience, 40(6), 2948–2962

Download pdf

Faculty research: Co-Infection Prevalence in Blacklegged Ticks

The ticks that harbor the bacterium that causes Lyme disease can also carry other pathogens. Dr. Felicia Keesing and co-authors showed that ticks are more likely to be coinfected with the organism that causes babesiosis than expected by chance, as ticks are likely to acquire both pathogens when they feed on a single small-mammal host.

Citation: Hersh, Michelle H., Richard S. Ostfeld, Diana J. McHenry, Michael Tibbetts, Jesse L. Brunner, Mary E. Killilea, Kathleen LoGiudice, Kenneth A. Schmidt, and Felicia Keesing. “Co-Infection of blacklegged ticks with Babesia microti and Borrelia burgdorferi is higher than expected and acquired from small mammal hosts.” (2014): e99348.

Download the paper: Hersh et al. 2014 – coinfection