September 2018
A Message from the Dean: A Model Approach to Biology
We’re on the quest to explore the diversity of biological systems found in plants, animals and microbes. 

A broad understanding of biology is necessary to reveal disease mechanisms, explore responses to environmental challenges and develop new technologies. 

To obtain this knowledge, College of Biological Sciences researchers study of a wide range of organisms.

Our scientists work with hundreds of different organisms in the laboratory and in the field. Some, like the Drosophila genus of fruit flies, are well known, while we’re only just beginning to explore others in depth.

The Hydra, a small freshwater invertebrate, is one such creature. It renews its stem cells throughout its life. Because of this, it may hold the clues to cellular regeneration and longevity. A new National Science Foundation grant will help Assistant Professor Celina Juliano develop genetic tools to better understand the Hydra.

Model organism diversity creates unique opportunities for our students to study and learn firsthand alongside some of the world’s top researchers.

It’s just one of the defining qualities that makes life sciences programs at UC Davis one-of-a-kind.

Go Ags!

Mark Winey, Ph.D.
Dean, College of Biological Sciences
Distinguished Professor of Molecular and Cellular Biology 
P.S. Support research and discovery in the College of Biological Sciences today!
Professor Aldrin Gomes, students Leib Lipowsky and Tayler Smith and BUSP Director Connie Champagne stand outside the Life Sciences Building. David Slipher/UC Davis

Biology Undergraduate Scholars Program Elevates Diversity in the Life Sciences

Since 1988, the Biology Undergraduate Scholars Program (BUSP) has enabled more than 1,500 undergrads from underrepresented or disadvantaged backgrounds to pursue research in the life sciences. Each fall, approximately 50 students join the program.

“We demystify the undergraduate research experience for these students and help them understand what’s expected from them as undergraduate researchers,” said Connie Champagne.
News Highlights
Philipp Zerbe Receives Young Investigator Award from Phytochemical Society of North America
To help protect our food sources, Assistant Professor Philipp Zerbe, Department of Plant Biology, investigates how crops—like maize—deal with environmental stressors at the molecular level, defining the networks that give rise to chemical defenses. 
Every Plant Has a Story: Ellen Dean and the Center for Plant Diversity
The Center for Plant Diversity holds more than 300,000 dried plant specimens. Student employees learn many skills, including how to use plant presses, create labels and mount plants for display.
UC Davis Receives $1 Million From Keck Foundation Following Virus Discovery
Researchers at UC Davis and the University of Alberta, Canada, have made preliminary discoveries about how Zika and hepatitis C viruses reproduce at the cellular level, providing new insight into a family of viruses that also includes West Nile and dengue.
The Scent of a Mate: Seabird Study Provides Insights into Sexual Selection
A new study from Professor Gabrielle Nevitt, Department of Neurobiology, Physiology and Behavior, appearing in Molecular Ecology delves into the sexual selection behaviors of Leach's storm-petrels, a seabird that may be able to sniff out a suitable mate.
Plant Cell Study Adds to Protein Trafficking Dogma
A new study, published by Steve Theg, Department of Plant Biology, Iniyan Ganesan, a plant biology Ph.D. student and their colleagues reexamines how protein trafficking occurs in the chloroplasts of green pea plants. The findings add nuance to the protein trafficking dogma.
Discovering Curiosity
Explore how a passion for science propelled our faculty on the path to research
Eric Sanford Discusses How Marine Science and Sustainable Fisheries Go Hand in Hand
Since joining the UC Davis faculty in 2004, Eric Sanford has worked closely with shellfish industry businesses to promote sustainable aquaculture for ecologically and economically important coastal species.

Follow Us on Instagram

Love science? Connect with the College of Biological Sciences ( @UCDavisBiology) and explore the photogenic world of life sciences at UC Davis, including:

  • Faculty and student research
  • Campus views
  • Alumni profiles
  • Larger-than-life, under-the-microscope views
  • And lots more great science stuff

Be sure to tag us in your biology-related posts, and we'll share the best content.