Upcoming Events
National Estuaries Day Festival
FAU Harbor Branch and the Smithsonian Marine Station at Fort Pierce co-host a National Estuaries Day Festival from 10 am - 3pm. Museum Pointe Park (414 Seaway Drive, Fort Pierce.) FREE admission, children's activities, live entertainment. For more info, call Smithsonian Marine Ecosystems Exhibit: (772) 465-3271.

Friday, February 7 
The Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institute Foundation's 3rd Annual "Love Your Lagoon" Dinner. Details to follow...  
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September 27, 2013
FAU Harbor Branch Featured on NPR's Morning Edition
  This week, FAU Harbor Branch scientists Dr. Dennis Hanisak, Dr. Brian Lapointe and Kristen Davis were the featured experts in a story about the issues facing the Indian River Lagoon that aired nationally on NPR's Morning Edition. Click here to listen! 
Natural Product from Deep Water Sponge used to Combat MRSA
  Researchers from the Center of Excellence in Biomedical and Marine Biotechnology (CEBMB) at FAU Harbor Branch published a paper in the Journal of Natural Products titled "Indolo[3,2-a]carbazoles from Deep-Water Sponge of the Genus Asteropus" with authors Floyd Russell, Dedra Harmody, Peter McCarthy, Shirley Pomponi and Amy Wright. The paper describes a new natural product isolated from a deep-water sponge called Asteropus (pictured above.) The compound has antimicrobial activity against the human pathogen methicillin-resistant Staphyloccoccus aureus commonly known as MRSA.
 This new compound is one of a larger set of compounds that are being purified by the natural products chemists at HBOI to supply to the US National Institutes of Health as part of the Molecular Roadmap project. The Molecular Roadmap project is a very large initiative at the NIH that seeks to understand the role of every protein in the human body and how they relate to human health. Compounds submitted by CEBMB researchers to the Roadmap will be tested very broadly in labs across the country with the hope of finding compounds that can provide unprecedented treatments for diseases such as cancer.   The Center is proud to be part of this national program.
(*Story submitted by Dr. Amy Wright*) 
Schaefer Co-Authors Paper on the Link Between Dolphin and Human Disease

  Can dolphins transmit disease to humans? FAU Harbor Branch scientist Adam Schaefer is co-author on a scientific paper that was recently published regarding the skin disease, Lobomycosis. The findings: there is very little evidence to suggest this particular disease can be transferred from dolphins to humans, despite a previous scientific hypothesis. Click here to read the full paper. 

CIOERT  Receives Grant Funding for 5th Straight Year 
The Cooperative Institute for Ocean Exploration, Research, and Technology (CIOERT) located at FAU Harbor Branch received a one-year, $1,008,310 grant from NOAA, beginning July 1, 2013. This is the fifth year of funding for CIOERT; the grant will support ocean exploration, research, technology development, and education, with a focus on the Gulf of Mexico (GOM).
  HBOI faculty leading these projects are Dr. Shirley Pomponi (CIOERT Executive Director), Dr. Dennis Hanisak (CIOERT Education Director), Dr. Amy Wright, John Reed, and Dr. Joshua Voss. Other faculty participating in the research are Dr. Peter McCarthy and Dr. Esther Guzman.
  Each of these projects also involves collaboration with existing or new partners: CIOERT partners University of North Carolina Wilmington,  University of Miami, Cooperative Institute for Marine and Atmospheric Studies, the National Institute for Undersea Science and Technology and several programs within NOAA, including Ocean Exploration and Research, National Ocean Services, Fisheries, Deep Sea Coral Research and Technology Program, and Sanctuaries. 
FAU Harbor Branch Named "Business of the Year"   


FAU Harbor Branch was named "Business of the Year" in the category of "Research Science and Technology" by the St. Lucie County Chamber of Commerce during their annual Business and Industry Awards ceremony last week.   

HBOI Welcomes Two New Researchers  

  The expertise at FAU Harbor Branch is broadening, thanks to the hire of two new faculty members with extensive experience in physical oceanography. The positions were made possible through funding provided by the Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institute Foundation.

  HBOI recently welcomed Laurent M. Ch�rubin, Ph.D., who came from the University of Miami's Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science where he was an associate scientist and adjunct faculty member. Ch�rubin earned an undergraduate degree in fluid mechanics from the University of Bordeaux in France, a master's degree in physical and coastal oceanography, as well as a Ph.D. in science of marine environment from the University of M�diterran�e in Marseille, France.

  Mingshun Jiang, Ph.D., joined the FAU Harbor Branch faculty as a physical oceanographer this week. Jiang left his position as a research associate and adjunct professor at the University of Massachusetts Department of Environmental, Earth and Ocean Sciences in Boston, where he has been for more than 10 years. Jiang earned an undergraduate degree in applied mathematics from Peking University in Beijing, P.R. China and a Ph.D. in physical oceanography from the Ocean University of Qingdao in Qingdao, P.R. China.

   "We are very excited to welcome our two new research faculty to Harbor Branch," said Dr. Megan Davis, associate executive director of research. "Their research discipline in physical oceanography will enhance collaborations in ocean science, coastal systems, and the Indian River Lagoon at both Harbor Branch and FAU."   
Wright Secures Two NIH Grants for Tuberculosis and Malaria Research 

   FAU Harbor Branch scientist Dr. Amy Wright was recently awarded two National Institutes of Health (NIH) grants for collaborative research on marine natural products for use against tuberculosis and malaria. The first is in collaboration with the University of Central Florida - the NIH-sponsored funding of $158,950 will support a two-year project titled "Discovery of marine natural products targeting laten M. tuberculosis" working with principal investigator Dr. Kyle Rhode of UCF.  The second is a $400,582 NIH grant to FAU for a two-year project titled "Discovery of marine invertebrate-derived antimalarial agents" working with co-investigator Dr. Debopam Chakrabarti of UCF.   

Hands Across the Lagoon Event TOMORROW!  

    In conjunction with National Estuaries Day (for more info on the FAU Harbor Branch/Smithsonian National Estuaries Day Festival, see "Upcoming Events,") the Indian River Lagoon National Estuaries Program is hosting "Hands Across the Lagoon." The event aims to bring people together on causeways in all five lagoon counties to call attention to the issues it currently faces.  Click here for more information on the event, including locations.    

HBOI Video of the Week...  


  Trapping and releasing grouper for study was a daily research activity during the Coral Ecosystem Connectivity 2013 research cruise to Pulley Ridge, off the southwest coast of Florida. A camera mounted to one of the fish traps by FSU researcher Chris Malinowski returned several interesting shots - click here to watch!