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Synthetic Biology Used to Limit Bacterial Growth and Coordinate Drug Release

Researchers at the University of California San Diego and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) have come up with a strategy for using synthetic biology in therapeutics. The approach enables continual production and release of drugs at disease sites in mice while simultaneously limiting the size, over time, of the populations of bacteria engineered to produce the drugs. The findings are published in the July 20 online issue of Nature.

In Memoriam: William Loomis, Distinguished Professor of Biology, 1940-2016

William F. Loomis, an emeritus distinguished professor of biology who spent 50 years as a faculty member at UC San Diego, died June 30 from cardiac arrest in his campus office while working on a manuscript. A resident of Del Mar, CA, he was 76.

Daniela Zarate Awarded 2016 NSF Graduate Research Fellowship

Daniela Zarate, a doctoral student in the Section of Ecology, Behavior and Evolution, has been awarded a Graduate Research Fellowship from the National Science Foundation.

Slime Mold Reveals Clues to Immune Cells’ Directional Abilities

How white blood cells in our immune systems home in on and engulf bacterial invaders—like humans following the scent of oven-fresh pizza—has long been a mystery to scientists.

UC San Diego’s Algae Biofuels Program Ranked Best in Nation

The U.S. Department of Energy has ranked UC San Diego’s algae biofuels research effort the number one program in the nation for the fourth consecutive year.

Say ‘Cheese’

In an innovative effort to understand microbial communities, a UC San Diego biology professor has turned cheese into her ‘lab rat’

While many microbiologists build entire research careers around studies of a single microorganism, Rachel Dutton has taken her career in the other direction—examining collections of microbes, but with an unusual twist. She studies what grows on cheese.

Biologists Discover New Strategy to Treat Central Nervous System Injury

Neurobiologists at UC San Diego have discovered how signals that orchestrate the construction of the nervous system also influence recovery after traumatic injury.They also found that manipulating these signals can enhance the return of function. 

In Memoriam, Ted J. Case, 1947-2015


Ted J. Case, professor emeritus and former chair of the UC San Diego Department of Biology, died of a sudden heart attack while trail running on December 31, 2015. He was 68.

His research career spanned four decades and focused on evolutionary ecology, biogeography, conservation biology and community ecology. 

Leilani Cruz Named to Bouchet Graduate Honor Society

Leilani Cruz, a Ph.D. student in the Division of  Biological Sciences is one of ten graduate students  recently selected for the 2015-2016  cohort of the UC San Diego chapter of the Bouchet Graduate Honor Society.  

Beach Replenishment May Have ‘Far Reaching’ Impacts on Ecosystems

UC San Diego biologists who examined the biological impact of replenishing eroded beaches with offshore sand found that such beach replenishment efforts could have long-term negative impacts on coastal ecosystems.


To read more about Division of Biological Sciences happenings, see the News Archives.