March 2019
A Message from the Dean: Science, Art and Public Outreach
Science is the passion that drives us, and our students share this passion through their many talents.

To compliment her microbial research on coral bleaching, Natascha Varona uses her artistic talents to raise awareness about ocean health. From petri dish to digital paintbrush, she brings new perspectives to help fight a global problem.

On the science communications front, last week Katie Murphy, a plant biology Ph.D. student, was named the UC Davis Grad Slam Champion. Her three-minute talk on corn stress resistance and global food security eloquently—and urgently—brought home the message for the public crowd.

Campus is bursting with multifaceted students like Natascha and Katie. We hope you’ll join us April 13 for Picnic Day to explore UC Davis and see firsthand what makes the Aggie experience so unique.

Our university thrives by paying it forward to create opportunities for future Aggies. So we’re asking for your help during the 29-hour event, Give Day, which also happens on April 13. If there is a time to make a gift, this is it. Lending your support on Give Day magnifies the impact and helps us meet time-sensitive challenges.

Go Ags!

Mark Winey, Ph.D.
Dean, College of Biological Sciences
Distinguished Professor of Molecular and Cellular Biology 
P.S. Your gift – at any amount -- goes further on Give Day. Help us unlock giving challenges sponsored by generous donors to our college. Join in starting on April 12 at noon or use the ‘Give Early’ button to make your Give Day gift TODAY!
Genome sequencing and assembly is a jumping off point for exploring genomics. Jacopo Werther, Josef Reischig

The Language of Biology: How the Heck Do Scientists Assemble a Genome?

The genome is likened to a blueprint for life. On the surface, this comparison provides some understanding, but according to some scientists, it misses the mark. UC Davis professors Ian Korf and Luca Comai explore this phenomena and help to "edit“ our common misconceptions about the genome.

“When I tell people what I do, I tell them that I write software that decodes the book of life.” -Professor Ian Korf
For Natascha Varona, art and science are tied together. David Slipher/UC Davis

Undergraduate Natascha Varona Blends Science and Art to Combat Coral Bleaching

Natascha Varona studies coral bleaching from a microbial angle with Professor Jonathan Eisen and Visiting Professor Raquel Peixoto. On top of research, she's using her artistic talents to raise awareness and find solutions for ocean health.

“I would love to stay with corals and working with them just because I know how severe the issue is right now with all the reefs dying. I know time is running out.” -Natascha Verona
News Highlights
Between the Pipes: Club Hockey with Undergraduate Timur Katsnelson
Transfer student Timur Katsnelson has gone all in on the Aggie experience. He’s a member of the UC Davis ice hockey club team, has worked as an undergraduate researcher and volunteers as a junior editor with The Aggie Transcript, a student-run life sciences journal. 
Unprecedented Number of Warm-Water Species Moved Northward During Marine Heatwave
Tropical species near San Francisco? New range limit records indicate the future face of the California coast. According to UC Davis researchers, southern species that were absent or rare from Bodega Bay in the 1970s are now fairly common in the area.
Discovering Curiosity
Explore how a passion for science propelled our faculty on the path to research
Uncovering the Hidden World of Plants with Jennifer Gremer
Assistant Professor Jennifer Gremer showed an interest in plant life at an early age, but her path to scientific research wasn’t straightforward. She dabbled in many fields related to plant sciences, from working as an interpretive ranger in Yosemite National Park to performing botanical surveys for the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem.

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