It is with great sadness that we report the passing of MCB Ph.D. graduate Cris Alvaro, who graduated in 2015. Cris was an exceptionally bright and talented scientist and a beloved member of the MCB Department. Cris identified as a trans and non-binary person and used the preferred pronouns they/them/their. Cris completed their graduate work with Dr. Jeremy Thorner, where they studied the signaling pathways that regulate pheromone responses in yeast. Cris’ most recent position was as an IRACDA Fellow and postdoc in Dr. Allan Basbaum’s lab in the Department of Anatomy at UCSF, where they studied how itch and pain signals are differentiated in the central nervous system. Cris was a ray of light in our community and will be sorely missed.
New technology developed by MCB Professor and HHMI Investigator Jennifer Doudna can be used to find signs of viral infections and cancers in snippets of DNA. This new tool, called DETECTR, has already been used to accurately identify two types of human papillomavirus (HPV) in human samples. In the future, DETECTR may become a reliable way of quickly diagnosing cancers and other illnesses.
A memorial celebration for long-time visiting scholar Ian Gibbons is planned for Sunday, February18, 2018 at his home in Orinda. He was recently honored with the Shaw Prize along with Ron Vale of UCSF for their "discovery of microtubule-associated motor proteins: engines that drive nerve cell growth and chromosome inheritance essential to human development." He was one of the true giants in his field and made many contributions to our understanding of biological motion. Ian passed away on January 30th at the age of 86.
In honor of UC Berkeley's "150 Years of Light" anniversary celebration, we're recognizing MCB & Chemistry Professor Emeritus Judith Klinman, a pioneer on the Berkeley campus. A talented scientist, Klinman is internationally known for her groundbreaking work on enzyme catalysis.
MCB Professor Daniel Rokhsar and other researchers have mapped the genomes for over 50 varieties of the genus Citrus to trace its origins and evolution over millions of years. Natural diversification and human breeding have played a large part in giving us the sweet and tangy fruit we enjoy at our tables today. Their work will allow breeders to create even more varieties. The paper was published online today in Nature.