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DUSCI Featured Researcher Archives

Dr. Thomas Rosburg presented with Sierra Club Iowa Chapter 2011 Environmental Educator Award (10/26/2011)

Dr. Thomas Rosburg, professor of biology, was recently presented with the Iowa Chapter of the Sierra Club's 2011 Environmental Educator Award for his outstanding work in Drake University's biology department. He was one of four award recipients at the Sierra Club's annual dinner.

Dr. Rosburg has taught 12 courses since coming to Drake in 1996, including field ornithology, ecology, Iowa natural history, limnology, identification of wetland plants, and ecosystem ecology at Drake since 1996. In that time, he has also mentored more than 50 students in research and independent studies that have covered topics in ecology, botany and environmental science. He also shares his summers with students, teaching plant ecology, natural history photography, and ecology at the Iowa Lakeside Laboratory field station on West Okoboji Lake. Dr. Rosburg served as director of environmental science and policy at Drake from 2004-2010.

Read more about this article online.


Professor Kim Huey awarded more than $400,000 to study muscle growth (8/24/2011)

Kim Huey, associate professor of health sciences, was recently awarded a multiyear a grant totaling $414,990 to study factors involved in muscle growth. This research could ultimately have a positive impact on maintaining and improving muscle function in individuals with muscle weakness, thereby improving quality of life and reducing long-term medical costs.

The project was awarded with support from The National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases, which is part of the Department of Health and Human Services National Institutes of Health (NIH). Dr. Huey worked with Drake’s Sponsored Programs Administration to secure the grant.

Dr. Huey’s studies will examine the importance of vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) during muscle growth. VEGF is well known to stimulate capillary growth in several tissues including skeletal muscle, but its specific role during muscle hypertrophy (increase in muscle size) is less clear.

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Drake students spend summer immersed in science (8/19/2010)

Before the semester even begins, seven Drake undergraduates are working on cutting edge research projects at scientific laboratories across the country. The students involved and their research sites are:

  • Rachel Barkley, a chemistry and biochemistry, cell and molecular biology double major from Blair, Neb., and the recipient of a 2010-11 Goldwater Scholarship; the University of Iowa
  • Kyle Denton, a junior chemistry and biochemistry, cell and molecular biology double major from Shawnee, Kan.; the Stowers Institute for Medical Research in Kansas City
  • Ryan Johnson, a senior chemistry major from Des Moines; the University of Minnesota
  • Ethan Kerzner, a senior mathematics and computer science double major from Edina, Minn.; the University of Iowa U.S. Army Research Laboratory
  • Ethan Secor, a junior chemistry and physics double major from Stillwater, Minn.; the University of New Mexico
  • Stephen Slade, a sophomore biology major with a neuroscience minor from Leon, Iowa; Des Moines University
  • Nathan Verlinden of Manitowoc, Wisc., who is in his second year of the Professional Pharmacy Program; the University of Kansas Medical Center

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Drake science student conducts compost, sustainability research in Wapello County (7/19/2010)

Emily Sibigtroth, a senior Drake University biology major, is taking her education to the field to help improve prairie restoration efforts in Eddyville, Iowa. Sibigtroth, of Durand, Ill., is conducting field research at Wapello County Conservation Board's site, about 70 miles southeast of Des Moines. She is helping the board establish their own seed production plots, which will help them better conduct prairie restoration projects. Seeds are the biggest expense in prairie restoration. "The purpose of this research is to see what impact, if any, compost has on seedling development," Sibigtroth said. "We want to study if there are negative or positive benefits associated with the addition of compost to the seedlings when they were transplanted." Read more about this article online.

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Undergraduates collaborate on summer research (07/07/2010)

Eleven Drake students spent the summer on campus conducting research through the Drake Undergraduate Science Collaborative Institute. The students worked with Drake faculty members in the fields of biology, psychology, computer science, chemistry, environmental science and pharmacology. They presented their research findings July 26. See a complete list of students who participated this summer.The presentations are a crucial part of the summer program because they give students and faculty the opportunity to learn about scientific research being conducted in fields other than their own. “It’s important for faculty and students to learn about each others’ projects and find ways to collaborate,” said Maria Bohorquez, professor of chemistry and DUSCI director. 

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