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BMB Weekly #43: November 18, 2022

Vol. 55, No. 43Horizontal banner with MSU helmet displaying College of Natural Science Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology

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Noteworthy News

Congratulations 2022 NatSci Faculty Award Recipients!

Junior Faculty Mentoring Award
Amy Ralston 

Teacher-Scholar Award
Sophia Lunt

Undergraduate Teaching Award
Kevin Haudek




Upcoming Seminars

Fall Colloquium Series: Anne West
December 1, 2022 — 10:00 a.m.–11:00 a.m.
BPS 1425 & Zoom

Please join us for our final seminar of the semester. Anne West from Duke University will be presenting "Postmitotic Mechanisms of Neuronal Maturation." 

To join us on Zoom, click this link. Password: bmbseminar

The Fall BMB Seminar Series will run through December 1, 2022. The complete schedule is available on the BMB Fall Seminar Series website. If you are interested in meeting with any of these speakers please email Leslie Williams, glady@msu.edu. Many speakers are planning to visit in-person. A zoom option will continue to be offered for all seminars.


Mark Your Calendar

CCT Scaffolding Session
November 21, 2022 — 4:30 p.m.–5:30 p.m.
Audience: Graduate Students & Postdocs

If you have attended any of our Certification in College Teaching Institutes in the last couple years, we invite you to join our scaffolding session to help you complete your Certification in College Teaching. In this session we will help clarify requirements, answer questions regarding the completion process, your teaching philosophy, your mentored teaching project, and associated assessment methods as well as your e-Portfolio completion. Learn more and register here

OCAT Annual Thanksgiving Unity Dinner
Registration Deadline: November 24, 2022 at 11:59 p.m.
Attention: Current Students

The annual Thanksgiving Day Unity Dinner organized by the Office of Cultural & Academic Transitions (OCAT) is being held on Thursday, Nov. 24 from noon-2 p.m. Location: Brody Hall Classrooms (1st Floor). This event provides a free Thanksgiving meal to all MSU students who remain on campus during the holiday. Student registration and volunteer sign-up can be found here

The Exchange: Journal Club Dr. Anna West, Duke University (Jin He)
November 29, 2022 — 8:00 a.m.–9:00 a.m.
Audience: Current Graduate Students

The Exchange is the weekly Tuesday morning event for graduate students. Please join us for the following:
Journal Club — Dr. Anna West, Duke University (Jin He)
Neurobiology – disease and gene regulation
Volunteers: Katie Thompson, Isaiah Kaufman,  Amberly Crawford

DEI Workshops: Inclusive Teaching Workshop Series 
November 29 and December 6, 2022 — 9:30 a.m.–11:30 a.m.
Audience: Employees and Graduate Students who have teaching responsibilities within the College of Natural Science or CISGS 

Facilitated by the Office of Institutional Diversity and Inclusion, the goals of this two-session workshop are to explore and share inclusive teaching strategies that support student success and to revise/develop a teaching philosophy statement that integrates these ideas through a DEI lens. Please register at this link

DEI Workshops: Cultural Competency Skills Development 
November 30, 2022 — 11:30 a.m.–1:00 p.m.
Audience: All Employees and Graduate Students in the College of Natural Science or CISGS 

In each workshop, we will practice unique scenarios to help participants develop skills to handle bias incidents, microaggressions, and discrimination that occur in STEM classrooms and workspaces. Participants are welcome to attend one or both sessions; each includes unique scenarios. Please register at this link

Starting Strong in Graduate School: Increasing Motivation
Event Dates: December 2, 2022 — 9:00 a.m.–12:00 p.m.
Attention: Graduate Students

Join University Outreach & Engagement on the first Friday of each month (November 4, December 2) for 3 hours of dedicated time and space for writing about your community engagement work. We offer in-person (at Brody Cafeteria) and virtual options, for free. Register here


Awards, Grants and Fellowships

JB Ashtin Medical Communications Fellowship
Application Deadline: November 18, 2022
Attention: Doctoral Students

JB Ashtin, a medical communications company, is seeking applicants for a fellowship program that will provide real-world experience to recent advanced-degree graduates from life sciences or healthcare profession programs who are exploring a career in medical communication. Learn more here

Great IDEA Fellowship
Application Deadline: December 1, 2022
Attention: Graduate Students

The College of Natural Science is launching a new graduate fellowship to enable mentored projects that promote Inclusion, Diversity, Equity, and Accessibility (IDEA) in STEM at MSU. Learn more here

The Mellon Emerging Faculty Leaders Award*
Application Deadline: December 1, 2022
Attention: Graduate Students

The MEFL Award supports tenure-track junior faculty post-midterm review whose research focuses on contemporary American history, politics, culture, and society and who are building inclusive campus communities through their teaching, scholarship, and service. This award is funded by the Mellon Foundation. Learn more here
*Pending funding renewal by the Mellon Foundation.

2023 MAGS Teaching Award Nominations
Application Deadline: January 20, 2023
Attention: Faculty, Deans, and Graduate Students

Nominations are being accepted for the 2023 MAGS Excellence in Teaching Award competition. This Teaching Award is very competitive, so we are looking for exceptional PhD and Master’s students with great demonstration of teaching competence and knowledge of pedagogy, innovative teaching/instructional design, and effective mentoring skills and commitment to teaching professional development. Students must be nominated by faculty/deans. Learn more here



Electronic Theses and Dissertation Deadlines
Attention: Graduate Students

Deadlines for Electronic Theses and Dissertations are coming up:

  • Submission Deadline – December 1 at 5 p.m. ET
    • Each semester has a deadline for the initial submission of theses and dissertations to ProQuest.
    • The document submitted to ProQuest is expected to be a final version, meaning it has been successfully defended, corrections the committee wants have been made, and there are no more content changes.
  • Final Deadline – December 15 at 5 p.m. ET
    • Documents have been accepted and delivered for publishing, all required paperwork has been turned in, all milestones have been completed and all degree audits have been completed.

For more ETD information and resources please visit this link

New Drug Discovery Course in Spring 2023
Attention: Graduate Program Assistants, Graduate Program Directors, and GAADs

Dr. Kin Sing Lee and Dr. Edmund Ellsworth are excited to announce the new Drug discovery course in Spring 2023. They have invited industrial experts to give specific lectures. It will also cover new tools being used in drug discovery and development. If you have any questions regarding the course or enrollment, please feel free to email sing@msu.edu. Click here to view the full course announcement and description. 

New approval process for recent MSU employees remaining on guidance committees
Attention: Graduate Program Assistants, Graduate Program Directors, and GAADs

The Graduate School has a new, streamlined process for requesting approval for recent MSU employees to remain on their graduate students' existing guidance committees. This process may be used if the employee has left or will be leaving MSU within 3 months of the day the form is submitted. Please direct questions to approvals@grd.msu.edu. Learn more here

MSU Joins the Association for Women in Science
Attention: Faculty, Academic Staff, and Graduate Students

The Association for Women in Science (AWIS) announced a new partnership with Michigan State University. MSU students, staff and faculty may join AWIS now free under the MSU institutional agreement. AWIS offers webinars, career resources and more. Learn more here

The Sci-Files
Attention: Graduate and Professional Students

The Sci-Files is always looking for MSU graduate & professional students to speak about their research on the MSU student radio station, Impact 89FM - https://impact89fm.org/. The Sci-Files is an award-winning show with over 150 episodes highlighting the research of MSU students. Students from any discipline are welcome to email scifiles89fm@gmail.com if you are interested in being interviewed.  Check out the Sci-Files Podcasts here: https://impact89fm.org/the-sci-files/.

New Electronic Thesis & Dissertation Webpage
Attention: Faculty, Academic Staff, and Graduate Students

There is a new webpage that has been created on the grad.msu.edu website (https://grad.msu.edu/etd) that provides information related to Electronic Theses and Dissertation submissions. You can access deadline dates, formatting guides, and more at this link.

COVID-19 Guidance for International Travel
Attention: Staff, Faculty, Research Associates, and Graduate Students

To help field questions, Global Safety has developed a guide with recommended steps and resources. This is available as a PDF and on the Global Safety website at www.globalsafety.msu.edu/positive-COVID-19. The first step is to call ISOS for guidance.


Job Postings

Research Assistant II — Hoogstraten Lab   New!

The lab of Charles G. Hoogstraten, BMB, is seeking to hire a research assistant. This position will provide molecular biology and biochemistry laboratory support; experimental design, execution, and analysis; presentation of results; and training for the Hoogstraten research group. Primary responsibilities will include overall planning and supervision of wet-lab research in the group; development and documentation of laboratory protocols to achieve defined goals; maintenance of laboratory safety procedures and shared equipment; preparation and purification of shared reagents including stable (i.e., non-radioactive) isotope-labeled nucleotides and overexpressed T7 RNA polymerase; in vitro transcription and purification of milligram quantities of defined-sequence RNA; general molecular biology and biochemistry procedures including column chromatography on an Akta system; maintaining inventories and safety records; supervision of undergraduate workers as appropriate; and training of lab members in laboratory protocols, equipment usage, and safety. See MSU Careers posting and apply at this link. Job posting closes on Nov. 20th.

Postdoctoral Research Associate — Brandon Ruotolo’s Lab, UofM 

Applications are now being accepted for a Postdoctoral Research Associate associated with Brandon Ruotolo’s laboratory in the Department of Chemistry at the University of Michigan. Specifically, A post-doctoral scholar is sought to pursue objectives associated with work in collaboration with Agilent Technologies, focusing on developing next-generation ion mobility-mass spectrometry equipment and methods for the analysis of biotherapeutics. Learn more about the job posting and apply at this link

Instructor, Fixed Term — MSU   

The Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology (BMB) at Michigan State University is seeking an innovative and engaging educator for a 12-month, fixed-term (non-tenure track) Instructor position to manage day-to-day operations and participate in instruction of intermediate and senior level undergraduate biochemistry laboratory courses. The initial appointment is for one year with reappointment expected based on satisfactory performance and continued funding. Learn more about this MSU Careers posting and apply at this link.

Research Scientist — Cecilia Giulivi Lab, UC Davis   

A research scientist position is available immediately in the laboratory of Cecilia Giulivi (https://www.vetmed.ucdavis.edu/faculty/cecilia-giulivi) in the Department of Molecular Biosciences and MIND Institute at the University of California Davis. The laboratory focuses on understanding mitochondrial dysfunction in autism and in neurodegeneration. To accomplish this, the team uses a combination of genetic, genomic, biochemical, and pharmacological approaches in patient’s tissues, mammalian cell lines, and mouse models. The successful candidate will investigate how exosomes, genetic background, and sex differences (among others) influence the mitochondrial (dys)function in the neurodegenerative disorder FXTAS. The position will be available for at least two years with yearly extensions (up to a total maximum of five years) pending satisfactory progress and/or funding availability. Learn more about the job posting and apply at this link

Associate Professor, Tenure System — MSU   

Michigan State University (MSU) in East Lansing, Michigan is recruiting a Director for the Mass Spectrometry and Metabolomics Core. We seek applicants for this tenure-stream Associate Professor position in the Department of Biochemistry & Molecular Biology who possess expertise in the isolation, analysis, and annotation of small molecules within complex biological matrices and/or extracts using mass spectrometry and/or complementary approaches such as NMR, x-ray crystallography, cryo-electron diffraction and/or other structural techniques including synthesis. The position will involve managerial leadership and consulting with facility users regarding best analysis practices. The ideal candidate will have core leadership experience and an established record of achievements in the novel use and/or development of mass spectrometry, with a strong publication record supported by external, competitively obtained funds. Evidence of collaboration in the annotation of novel metabolites extracted from diverse biological matrices is highly desirable. Learn more about this MSU Careers posting and apply at this link.

Assistant Professor, Tenure System — MSU   

The Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology at Michigan State University (MSU) in East Lansing, Michigan seeks applicants for a tenure-track Assistant Professor position in the area of Mass Spectrometry and/or Metabolomics. Academic interests of candidates can be broad but are expected to possess expertise in the isolation, analysis, and annotation of small molecules within complex biological matrices and/or extracts using mass spectrometry and/or complementary approaches such as NMR, x-ray crystallography, cryo-electron diffraction and/or other structural techniques including chemical synthesis. Competitive applicants will have a record of achievement in the novel use and/or development of mass spectrometry. Commitments to collaboration, teaching, and the promotion of diversity and inclusion are expected. Learn more about this MSU Careers posting and apply at this link.

Postdoctoral Research Associate Position — Hoogstraten Lab

The lab of Charles G. Hoogstraten, BMB, is seeking to hire a postdoc available to study to study the biophysics of RNA recognition and tertiary interface formation.

Depending on interest and experience, projects will involve some combination of: 

  • NMR spin relaxation and CEST analyses of functional minor conformations (“invisible states”) in RNA recognition and catalysis; 
  • Biophysical (including ITC and/or SPR) and biochemical analyses of RNA structure-dynamics-function relationships; and
  • Advanced molecular dynamics techniques as applied to low-probability sampling and tertiary interface formation. 

In addition to performing research, the postdoc will be expected to mentor junior lab members, help maintain laboratory equipment and protocols, participate in collaborative projects, write up results for publication, and present results at regional and national meetings. See MSU Careers posting and apply at this link.


Recent Publications

Bird, K.A., Jacobs, M. et. al.  “Parental origins of the cultivated tetraploid sour cherry (Prunus cerasus L.).”  Plants People Planet.         (2022).

Bibik, J.D., Weraduwage, S.M., Banerjee, A., Robertson, K., Espinoza-Corral, R., Sharkey, T.D., Lundquist, P.K., Hamberger, B.R.        “Pathway engineering, re-targeting, and synthetic scaffolding improve the production of squalene in plants.”  ACS Synthetic        Biology Vol. 11, Iss. 6 (2022).

Orlowska, K., Fling, R. R., Nault, R., Sink, W. J., Schilmiller, A. L., & Zacharewski, T. "Dioxin-elicited decrease in cobalamin
        redirects propionyl-CoA metabolism to the β-oxidation-like pathway resulting in acrylyl-CoA conjugate buildup." The Journal of
        biological chemistry 298(9),102301 (2022). https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jbc.2022.102301   

Rossi, M., Altea-Manzano, P., Demicco, M. et. al.  “PHGDH heterogeneity potentiates cancer cell dissemination and metastasis.”        Nature 605, 747–753 (2022). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41586-022-04758-2

Sadre, R., Anthony, T.M., Grabar, J.M. et al. Metabolomics-guided discovery of cytochrome P450s involved in pseudotropine-dependent
        biosynthesis of modified tropane alkaloids. Nat Commun 13, 3832 (2022). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41467-022-31653-1.  

Tinney, K.R., Dover, J.A., Doore, S.M., and Parent, K.  “Shigella viruses Sf22 and KRT47 require outer membrane protein C for        infection.”  Biochimica et Biophysica Acta (BBA) – Biomembranes  Vol. 1864, Iss. 7 (2022).

See story on Sophia Lunt’s collaborative research on molecular workings of a certain form of metastatic Breast cancer in MSU Today.

Professor A. Daniel Jones recently contributed to a piece published online about treating PFAS-contaminated wastes. Check it out here!   

To provide feedback or submit content, please email bmb.web@msu.edu.

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College of Natural Science | BMB Weekly | Vol. 55, No. 43