News @ Minnesota State University Moorhead

Archive for the ‘Biosciences’

Campus Iguana Has New Name

Posted on May 05, 2016

….. And the Winner is – Rosalind Franklin.

When the polls closed at 4:30 p.m. on Wednesday, May 4, the ballots were counted (with four witnesses) and the winner was Rosalind Franklin. Feel free to stop by between finals or before summer break to say “Hello Rosalind!” Read the rest of this entry →

Honors Program Scholarships Awarded

Posted on May 02, 2016

The Honors Program is pleased to announce that four students have been selected to receive new Honors Program Scholarships for 2016-17. Read the rest of this entry →

Help Name the New MSUM Iguana

Posted on April 29, 2016

It was a sad day when Curie the resident MSUM Green iguana passed away. But, don’t fear, a kind family near Detroit Lakes contacted the MSUM Biosciences Department to donate their 3-year-old Green iguana. If you have passed by recently might have caught a glimpse of her chilling out on the branches or eating some raspberries. Read the rest of this entry →

Professor Adam Stocker to present research on Genetic Manipulations

Posted on April 12, 2016

Thursday, April 14 | 4:00 pm | Langseth Hall 118

MSUM’s Biosciences department is hosting a seminar talk this Thursday, April 14, at 4:00 pm in Langseth Hall room 118. Biosciences professor Adam Stocker will be presenting his research in a talk titled “Genetic Manipulations during Brain Development change both Anatomy and Behavior.” The talk is open to the public and free of charge.

MSUM Bioscience students presented at the Minnesota Chapter of The Wildlife Society

Posted on April 06, 2016

Donna M. Bruns Stockrahm and Sara J. Anderson, Biosciences Department, attended the Annual Meeting of the Minnesota Chapter of The Wildlife Society in Mankato, MN, on 9-11 February 2016 and mentored the following MSUM Bioscience students presenting their research at the meeting: Read the rest of this entry →

Curie, the Biosciences Department’s iguana, has passed away

Posted on March 22, 2016
Curie, the Biosciences Department’s beloved iguana, passed away on Monday, March 14.  Curie had been declining for some time due to his advanced age.  He was donated from a member of the community in February 2010, at the age of approximately 6 years, and was an immediate hit on campus.  He could often be seen strolling the hallways of Langseth Hall, or in the summer, outside basking in the sun.  He was a regular stop for tour groups, both prospective students and the many elementary students who frequent our campus for outreach events.  He was over 12 years old at the time of his passing, which is considered old for an iguana.  He will be missed.

Adam Stocker published in the peer-reviewed journal PLoS ONE

Posted on March 01, 2016

Adam Stocker, Biosciences, had a paper published in the peer-reviewed journal PLoS ONE titled: “Emx1 is Required for Neocortical Area Patterning.” The published findings identify a new gene that participates in specifying functional areas in the developing neocortex.

The neocortex is the most recently evolved and the most iconic part of the human brain (i.e. it is the large wrinkled portion). The neocortex is associated with higher thought processes, including language and the processing of information from our senses. The anatomy of the neocortex is organized into different functional regions called areas that are responsible for processing and/or integrating information. Read the rest of this entry →

MSUM undergraduates submitted a proposal to the IMPACT competition

Posted on February 18, 2016

Four MSUM undergraduates (Bioscience majors Vincent Anani, Bennen Bierman, and Gabe Pankonin and Computer Science major Jake Humphrey) submitted a proposal to the IMPACT competition held by the Mayo Clinic earlier this month. The proposal detailed their hypothesis explaining what may be the underlying cause of hypoplastic left heart syndrome (HLHS). Earlier this week, their proposal was named one of eight finalists (of the hundreds of submitted proposals). They will be presenting their proposal at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN on March 5th. If their proposal is selected as the best in their topic, then each student will be awarded $1,000 and have an opportunity to pursue the proposed research at the Mayo Clinic this summer.

The IMPACT program (Innovative Minds Partnering to Advance Curative Therapies) is an undergraduate program sponsored by Regenerative Medicine Minnesota and the Mayo Clinic Office of Applied Scholarship and Education Science. Biosciences professor Adam Stocker is the group’s faculty sponsor.

Adam Stocker published in the peer-reviewed journal

Posted on February 11, 2016

Adam Stocker, Biosciences, had a paper published in the peer-reviewed journal eLife titled: “Genetic mechanisms control the linear scaling between related cortical primary and higher order sensory areas.” The published findings reveal a previously unknown relationship between the size of primary sensory areas and higher order areas controlled by gene expression during embryonic development. Read the rest of this entry →

Biosciences faculty research manuscript accepted for publication

Posted on January 26, 2016

Biosciences faculty Brian Wisenden, Dan McEwen and Ellen Brisch, together with Biosciences undergraduates Tony Stumbo, Kurtis McIntire, Justin Scheierl, Jessica Aasand, Heather North, Janna Gilbertson, Diana Grant, Frantz Joseph, Emily Mammenga and Rachel Walsh had their research manuscript accepted for publication in the international peer-reviewed journal Environmental Biology of Fishes. The title of their paper is “Population-specific co-evolution of offspring antipredator competence and parental brood defense in Nicaraguan convict cichlids”. Read the rest of this entry →

Dr. Michelle Malott to join Indiana University East

Posted on January 05, 2016

Dr. Michelle Malott will join Indiana University East as the executive vice chancellor for Academic Affairs beginning July 1, 2016. As the executive vice chancellor, Michelle will be IU East’s chief academic and student affairs officer and will serve as the institution’s senior administrative officer. She will provide academic leadership to preserve and enhance the quality of academic programs and support services as well as be responsible for the strategic direction of Academic Affairs. Currently, Michelle is the dean of the College of Science, Health, and the Environment and a professor of bioscience at Minnesota State University in Moorhead, Minnesota. She has been at MSU since 2001 when she first began as an assistant professor of bioscience. Before she was dean, she was the chairperson of the Department of Biosciences.

Chris Chastain, Biosciences, awarded 2-year $148,600 research grant

Posted on November 03, 2015

Chris Chastain, Biosciences, was awarded a 2-year $148,600 research grant from the USDA-National Institute of Food and Agriculture. The grant, entitled “Role of pyruvate phosphate dikinase regulatory protein isoform-2 in Zea mays C4 photosynthesis”, will fund Dr. Chastain’s ongoing research into C4 photosynthesis. In addition, the award also provides funds to hire two undergraduate students for full-time summer research and for their attendance and participation at a national level research conference.

Take Tropical Field Biology this spring

Posted on October 14, 2015

When selecting courses for the spring semester, consider BIOL 335 Tropical Field Biology. This course is a 3-cr LASC 10 course that covers biological, political and social aspects of conservation biology. The class meets once per week for discussion of general principles of conservation, followed by discussion of Costa Rica as a case study, The course culminates in a 12-day field trip to Costa Rica over spring break to see first-hand various models of implementing conservation. For details of the 2015 course see For more information about this course contact Brian Wisenden, Space is limited to 18 students.


NSF Noyce grant celebration this evening

Posted on September 28, 2015

Monday, September 28, 2015
 | 5:00 – 5:30 p.m. | Langseth Hall Atrium 

Come celebrate Minnesota State University Moorhead’s recently awarded National Science Foundation Robert Noyce Scholarship grant of nearly $1.2 million for the project, “Preparing STEM Teachers to Successfully Navigate the Urban to Rural Gradient in Outstate Minnesota.”

We will celebrate with words, food and cool science demos the new five-year award as well as the successful conclusion of the $262,000 NSF Noyce Capacity Building grant, which led to the development of an MSUM Learning Assistant Program and a summer internship program with our public school partners. Read the rest of this entry →

Alumnus Goes on NASA Mission

Posted on June 10, 2015

Craig Kutz is enrolled in the MD/PhD program at the Medical University of South Carolina


Ever since he was a kid growing up in a farming family on the outskirts of Sheboygan, Wisconsin, Craig Kutz dreamed of being an astronaut. “I’m kind of obsessed with NASA,” he said. The National Aeronautics and Space Administration is America’s space agency. Read the rest of this entry →

MSUM archaeologist retires after 40 years in the trenches

Posted on May 18, 2015

INFORUM, By Tu-Uyen Tran

MOORHEAD—When Mike Michlovic arrived at Minnesota State University Moorhead to start a field anthropology program, he said he was told to not bother digging in the Red River Valley because there’s nothing here.

MikeMForty years and a dozen archaeological sites later, he and his students have discovered much about the life of the ancient American Indians who lived here thousands of years ago.

As Michlovic tells it, that was all by necessity. Read the rest of this entry →

Molly Strong and Whitney Swanson win awards at the North Central District 3 Beta Beta Beta Meeting

Posted on April 27, 2015

Molly Strong received a second place award in the oral presentations and Whitney Swanson received second place in the poster competition at the North Central District 3 Beta Beta Beta Meeting held at the University of Iowa. Both students had received Beta Beta Beta Research Scholarships this past fall. Read the rest of this entry →

Members of the Wallert Cancer Research Team Present at the North Central District 3 Beta Beta Beta Meeting

Posted on April 27, 2015

Beta Beta Beta is the National Biological Honor Society. The North Central District 3 Annual Meeting was held at the University of Iowa April 17 and 18, 2015. Four members of the Wallert Cancer Research Team that are Beta Beta Beta members presented at this meeting. Read the rest of this entry →

Scott Buchholz recognized for outstanding poster at national meeting

Posted on April 22, 2015

At the 2105 national meeting of the American Society of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, the Cancer Theme was entitled “Cancer: The War at 44 and Warburg at 90.” Biochemistry and Molecular Biology major Scott Buchholz was honored as having one of four posters recognized as Outstanding Posters in cancer research. Scott’s project was entitled, “The Impact of Calcineurin B Homologous Protein Isoform 2 Expression on Non-small Cell Lung Cancer Cell Function under Hypoxic Conditions.” Scott’s research partner at MSUM is Biochemistry and Biotechnology major, Shelby Sieverding. The research was conducted in Dr. Mark Wallert’s laboratory.

Molly Strong inducted into ΧΩΛ honor society

Posted on April 22, 2015

At the 2015 national meeting of the American Society of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, junior Biochemistry and Biotechnology major Molly Strong was inducted into ΧΩΛ, the ASBMB Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Honors Society. Honor Society membership requires excellence in academics, undergraduate research, and scientific outreach. Molly is the first MSUM student to receive this honor. Molly does her research in the laboratory of Dr. Mark Wallert.

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