THE SCHOOL OF BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES NEWSLETTER VOLUME 92, August 2013
   
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AUGUST SEMINARS
The Seminar Series is held at 1:00-2:00 pm in room 139 Goddard Building (8).
All are welcome to attend.

23 AUGUST

Prof David Evans
Diamantina Institute
The University of Queensland
Genome-wide association studies and extensions of this methodology in the Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children

30 AUGUST
Dr Dick Zimmer
University of California
Keystone Species and Molecules of Keystone Significance

More information…
BIOL postgraduates can join the speaker for lunch on the day of the seminar. Similarly, if you are an academic or postdoc and would like to join a speaker for dinner on the Friday evening contact the coordinator A/Prof Bryan Fry, numbers are limited.
 
DATES FOR THE DIARY
SCHOOL 3MT COMPETITION
Thanks to Dr Amanda Niehaus and A/Prof Steve Chenoweth for organising this year’s School 3MT competition. We had four competitors who all gave outstanding presentations of what will eventually become an 80,000 word thesis in no more than three minutes and with only one slide as their prop. Presentations were given by Adam Reddix: Satisfying the needs of males and females; Penny Mills: My thesis is like a jigsaw puzzle; Tamara Fletcher: Ancient climate in a changing world; and Yi Han: Endangered island birds: is cat removal enough? Winning both the competition and the people’s choice award was Tamara Fletcher. She will go on to represent the School at the Faculty level, and perhaps beyond. Support Tamara on Wednesday 28 August at 3pm (til 4pm) at QBI Auditorium (Level 7, Building 79, St Lucia Campus, The University of Queensland). Everyone is welcome. Please register your attendance for this event.

LEICHHARDT CONFERENCE
To celebrate the 200th anniversary of the German explorer Ludwig Leichhardt, The University of Queensland will hold the Leichhardt Symposium on Biodiversity and Conservation on 23-24 October 2013. More...
 
BIOL IN THE NEWS
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MYSTERIOUS MANTAS
Interviewee: Fabrice Jaine
Press (1)

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PYTHONS TRICK DOCTORS
Interviewee: Bryan Fry
Press (1)

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DOWNGRADING THE HEALTH OF THE GBR
Interviewee: Ove Hoegh-Guldberg
AM Radio (1)

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CROCODILES FEELING THE COLD
Interviewee: Craig Franklin
AM Radio (1)

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KOMODO DRAGONS
Interviewee: Bryan Fry
AM Radio (1)

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CORALS WILL DISOLVE IF WE DON'T LOWER CO2 EMISSIONS
Interviewee: Sophie Dove
AM Radio (11)

 
 
CONTRIBUTIONS
BIOLinks is a monthly newsletter sent to BIOL School members, UQ executives, alumni, Government agencies and industry partners. To submit articles and announcements or nominate an alumni or research partner you would like to see contribute to Biolinks contact Tracey Franchi.

 
NEW LABS BOOST TEACHING QUALITY
Students in the School of Biological Sciences are enjoying classes in the new world-class teaching facilities on level 3 of the Goddard building. Approximately $1.73 million was spent on revitalising two old undergraduate labs into two new spaces – UQ's first PC2 certified laboratory dedicated solely to teaching, and an interactive practical and computing space. Stephen Walker, Dean of the Faculty of Science, and Professor Mick McManus, then DVC-Academic, both of whom contributed funding for the facilities, joined the School at the official opening celebration in April 2013. Read more...

 
$1.2 MILLION TO EXPLORE VIRUS CONTROL
Dr Sharon van Brunschot, A/Prof Gimme Walter, Dr James Hereward (School of Biological Sciences), Paul De Barro (CSIRO) and Dr Cherie Gambley (DAFF) have been awarded $1.2M from the Australian Cotton Research and Development Council. The project will look at Cotton leaf curl disease (CLCuD) which presents a major biosecurity threat to the Australian cotton industry because it can decimate production. The disease is caused by a complex of one or more begomoviruses, and is spread by the whitefly (Bemisia tabaci). Devastating epidemics of CLCuD have been reported from a number of countries across Africa and southern Asia – an epidemic during the 1990s in Pakistan resulted in yield losses of more than US$5 billion in value.
Read more...
 
OUR NEWEST ARC LAUREATE FELLOW
Prof Hugh Possingham is UQ’s latest scientist to receive a $2.4m Australian Research Council (ARC) Laureate Fellowship award. The five-year Laureate Fellowship will allow Professor Possingham to apply a sharper focus on debates around habitat protection and restoration, with research combining ecology, economics and mathematics. Read more...
 
FELLOW OF THE AUSTRALIAN ACADEMY OF SCIENCE
Congratulations to Prof Ove Hoegh-Guldberg who has been elected as a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Science. This is amongst the highest recognition for individual science achievement in Australia, and arises from Ove’s outstanding work on the biology of coral reefs, particularly how these vast ecosystems respond to global climate change and ocean acidification.
 
WELCOME TO JOHN DWYER
Dr John Dwyer is a plant ecologist interested in applied and theoretical aspects of restoration and community ecology. Originally from Bundaberg, he first tried his hand at landscape architecture before embarking on a Masters in Botany at UQ in 2003. John then worked as an ecological consultant (with Chenoweth EPLA) until 2006 when he started a PhD, also at UQ, with Yvonne Buckley and Rod Fensham. He spent the final months of his PhD in Switzerland, in the lab of Antoine Guisan. John returned to Australia in late 2010 to work with Margie Mayfield (UQ) and Prof Hobbs (UWA) on a project in the Western Australian wheatbelt. Now based at UQ and CSIRO, John is looking forward to developing a vibrant research group.
 
GLOBAL PRESIDENT-ELECT OF SCB
Dr James Watson (a former postdoc in the Spatial Ecology Lab and currently the Director of the Climate Change Program at the Wildlife Conservation Society, and an adjunct A/Prof at The University of Queensland) has been elected as the global President Elect of the Society for Conservation Biology. He’ll take the role of President of SCB on 1 July 2014. This is a fantastic achievement for James and will be a great opportunity for the Oceania section and young conservation scientists. James is the first Australian and only the third non-American to be elected to this position. He is also the only person under the age of 50! Congratulations James!

 
BIG "THANK YOU" FOR MICROSCOPES
John Simmond, Head of Department of Science at ISHS wishes to pass on a big thank you to the School of Biological Science for our generous donation. Forty microscopes were donated by the School of Biological Sciences to the Indooroopilly State High School senior Biology laboratory. Senior students at Indooroopilly State High School are amazed at the difference between the new microscopes donated to them and the old microscopes they were using previously. They are being used for advanced microscope work introduced into practical work since their arrival. Read more...
 
STANDING OUT ON STRADBROKE
The students who took part in the inaugural Conservation in Context (CONS7026) field trip to Stradbroke Island know how to stand out in a crowd - indeed, they had little choice, since most of their field time was spent wearing fluorescent yellow hard-hats and safety vests! The project was undertaken with the generous cooperation of Sibelco PTY LTD, on a range of sites that the company has mined and rehabilitated at various times over the last few decades. Read more...
 
BIOL BANTER
CONGRATULATIONS
Dr Kerrie Wilson has been selected as one of three 2013 Finalists for the Australian Museum's Macquarie University Eureka Prize for Outstanding Young Researcher. The winners will be announced at an award ceremony in early September. More information...
BIOL BABIES
Congratulations to Vera Weisbecker and Tim Playford on the birth of twins Ricarda Verena and Konstantin Colin Playford, who were born at Ipswich hospital on the 4 June weighing 2.9 and 2.6 kg, respectively.

PHOTO CREDIT
Earlier this year Dr Lynda Perkins and colleagues had a paper published in Proceedings of the Royal Society London, and Anthony O'Toole's photo was used on the cover of the hard copy version of the journal. The young caterpillar was photographed on Anthony’s kitchen table and was an enthusiastic subject. Well done Anthony!
 
 
 
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