Today at Berkeley Lab

Lab Researchers Featured in New Yorker Article on What Termites Can Teach Us

A New Yorker article on “What Termites Can Teach Us” features the work of Héctor García Martín of the Biosciences Area, JBEI’s Jay Keasling, and Jill Banfield of the Earth & Environmental Sciences Area to crack the mysteries of termite digestion to turn biomass into fuels. More>

You can leave a comment. View the Comment Policy.

In Memoriam: Biosciences Researcher Jim O’Neil

Jim O’Neil of the Molecular Biophysics and Integrated Bioimaging Division died on Aug. 7 at the age of 55 from complications related to heart failure. O’Neil was a radiochemist who made many important contributions to the field of nuclear medicine and to the Positron Emission Tomography (PET) imaging program at the Lab. A memorial service will be held at the Unitarian Universalist Church of Berkeley on Oct. 20 at 2 p.m. More>

You can leave a comment. View the Comment Policy.

KBase: A New Data Platform for the Biological Sciences

With the initial goal of developing a type of public research ​“Dropbox,” the KBase team, comprised of researchers from DOE’s Argonne, Berkeley, Oak Ridge, and Brookhaven national labs, as well as the Cold Spring Harbor Lab, have produced a multifaceted system that will change how science is recorded and shared. More>

You can leave a comment. View the Comment Policy.

Joint JGI-NERSC-KBase Call for Biological Data Science Proposals; Sept. 24 Deadline

The Joint Genome Institute, NERSC, and KBase have issued a joint call for proposals in biological data science as part of the Facilities Integrating Capabilities for User Science (FICUS) initiative. The call aims to help users perform large-scale computational analyses of genomics and related omics data to solve problems relevant to the DOE missions in bioenergy and the environment. Proposals are due Sept. 24. More>

You can leave a comment. View the Comment Policy.

Infrared Beams Show Cell Types in a Different Light

By shining highly focused infrared light on living cells, scientists at Berkeley Lab hope to unmask individual cell identities, and to diagnose whether the cells are diseased or healthy. They will use their technique to produce detailed, color-based maps of individual cells and collections of cells – in microscopic and eventually nanoscale detail – that will be analyzed using machine-learning techniques to automatically sort out cell characteristics. More>

You can leave a comment. View the Comment Policy.

iCLEM Cohort Concludes Summer Research at JBEI

The Introductory College Level Experience in Microbiology (iCLEM), the Joint BioEnergy Institute’s flagship outreach program, recently concluded with student presentations and poster presentations by the teachers who assisted in the program. Photos of the celebration are available here. Students shared highlights of their experience at JBEI here.

You can leave a comment. View the Comment Policy.

Biosciences’ Kenneth Downing Passes Away

The Berkeley Lab community mourns the loss of Kenneth H. Downing, who died August 2 at age 72. A senior scientist in the Molecular Biophysics and Integrated Bioimaging Division, Downing worked at the Lab for more than four decades. He passed away at home, surrounded by his family. A memorial service will be held on Saturday, September 1, at 11 a.m., at Lafayette-Orinda Presbyterian Church, with a reception to follow. More>

You can leave a comment. View the Comment Policy.

Do Bacteria Ever Go Extinct? New Research Says Yes, Big-Time

Patrick Shih of the Joint BioEnergy Institute and Biosciences Area collaborated with a team of researchers led by the University of British Columbia in a new study that has found that bacteria go extinct at substantial rates, but appear to avoid the mass extinctions that have hit larger forms of life on Earth. More>

You can leave a comment. View the Comment Policy.

Local Seventh-Graders Donate $1,000 for EcoPOD Research

Brandeis School of San Francisco students presented a check to the Berkeley Lab Foundation to support research by the Biosciences Area EcoPOD team. EcoPODs are intermediate-size closed ecosystems that will bridge the gap between the lab bench and field. Parents donated money in lieu of traditional bar and bat mitzvah gifts to teach students about philanthropy through their Tzedek Program.

You can leave a comment. View the Comment Policy.

New Methods to Control Bacterial Factories for Biotech Aims

Researchers affiliated with the Lab’s Environmental Genomics and Systems Biology Division and Michigan State’s MSU-DOE Plant Research Laboratory developed two new methods to facilitate the construction of synthetic versions of bacterial microcompartments. Scientists want to retrofit these miniature factories to perform desired functions, such as producing biofuels, industrial materials, or nanoscale medical devices. More>

You can leave a comment. View the Comment Policy.