This event celebrates the achievements of our Undergraduate Thesis Students and provides them with an opportunity to share the results of their research.  The quality of work produced by the students was very impressive, and a number of students were recognized for their outstanding posters or presentations.

In particular, congratulations to:

In the area of Cellular and Molecular Biology and Genetics – Shyanne Fournier, working with André Bédard and co-supervised by Juliet Daniel for the talk “MEK Inhibition and Hypoxia Promote Growth Arrest and p20K Expression in v-Src Transformed Chicken Embryo Fibroblasts (CEF)”

In the area of Biodiversity, Behaviour, and Neuroscience – Eisi Mollanji, working with Kim Dej and co-supervised by Bhagwati Gupta for the talk “The Isolation and Classification of a Potentially Novel Species of Nematode: The Gremlitode”

In the area of Ecology and the impact of Environment – Victoria Radauskas, working with Rosa da Silva and co-supervised by Roger Jacobs for the talk “Utilizing Entomopathogenic Fungi to Investigate the Physiology of the Halyomorpha halys Immune Response”

In the area of Physiology – Jasmine Choi, working with Graham Scott and co-supervised by Sigal Balshine for the talk “The effects of wastewater effluent on metabolism of bluegill sunfish”

In the area of Cellular and Molecular Biology – Rebecca Voth, working with Bhagwati Gupta and co-supervised by André Bédard for the poster “Characterizing the developmental and behavioural roles of two nuclear factors, ivp-3 and lin-11, in nematodes C. elegans and C. briggsae”

In the area of Environmental Biology – Michelle Murphy, working with Denys de Catanzaro and co-supervised by Graham Scott for the poster “Exposure to Bisphenol S During the Preimplantation Period Alters Uterine Morphology in Mice”

In the area of Ecology and Physiology – Vivek Patel, working with Graham Jones and co-supervised by Jonathon Stone for the poster “Heart Rate Variability (HRV) as a Measure for Diagnosing Patients in the ICU with Various Illnesses”

For the Best Overall Talk – Vicky Lai, working with Grant McClelland and co-supervised by Graham Scott on “Ontogeny of Brown Adipose Tissue in Deer Mice”

For the Best Overall Poster – Devon Jones, working with Joanna Wilson and co-supervised by Ben Evans on “Estrogen receptor-mediated regulation of CYP3C gene expression in Zebrafish (Danio rerio)”

A great big thank you to Rebecca Woodworth scheduling and organizing all aspects of the event.  A very big thank you also to Sinah Lee who organized the judging and to all the judges who volunteered their time, and all of the students and faculty who attended to support their colleagues.

The judges included the following individuals, Courtney Young, Daniel   Hsieh, Catherine Ivy, Lana Shaya, Alison Cowie, Dr. Juliet Daniel, David Crisante, Caylieh Robertson, Brittney Borowiec, Alex Shephard, Romy Pabla, Stephanie Peragine, Natalie D’Silva, Dr. Lovaye Kajiura, Scott Amon, Caitlin Simopoulos,Ben Furman Dr. Grant McClelland, Daniella Lato,  Nicole Pranckevicius, Taylor Brooks, Himeshi Samarasinghe, Stephanie Jones, Christine Kempthorne, Sulayman Lyons, Dr. Jonathan Dushoff, Mohammad Mohiuddin, Marvin Gunderman, Shaima Salman, and Aly El Sheikha.

BUS continues to be an excellent means for biology students to gain experience presenting their research projects.  Attending this event and watching how well our students present and discuss their research is a great entry point to the spring and summer seasons.

Biology student in iClimate video competition

4th year Biology student, Caitlin West (From Wilson Lab) featured in iClimate video competition.

Student leads trip to local waterfalls

Taking a dip at your favourite swimming hole. Dipping a paddle into a northern river. Taking a refreshing sip on a hot day.

Sherry Du knows that our relationship with water is complex – and incredibly important.

That’s why the master’s student in Environmental Biology wanted to introduce her fellow students to some of Hamilton’s many waterfalls recently.

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Students recognized for exceptional leadership

Three McMaster students were recently recognized for their exceptional leadership during the Black Arts and Innovation Expo (BAIE) in Toronto recently.

Software Engineering and Management student Abraham Omorogbe, Marquise Kamanke, a Chemical Engineering and Management student, and Shawn Hercules, a grad student in Biology, were each awarded a $5,000 scholarship from BAIE in recognition of their academic, leadership and community achievements.


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Devil’s tongue in bloom

The Devil’s Tongue is in bloom at the Biology Greenhouse. Visiting Hours are Wednesday 9am – noon.

The devil’s tongue, Amorphophallus konjac is a mid-sized relative of the titan arum, Amorphophallus titanum. This perennial herb is found in the wild in forest edge and open habitats in Yunnanm China, but has been cultivated for two millenia in China, Japan and southeast Asia for medicine and food. Its starchy corm is processed into a gelatin substitute sometimes used in Asian fruit jelly candy, and provide glucomannan, a laxative used for hyperlipidemia and diabetes. Flour made from the corm is used in noodles, tofu and snacks.

Marie Elliot nominated for Women of Distinction Award

Dr. Marie Elliot, IIDR member and associate professor in the Department of Biology at McMaster, was recently nominated for a 2017 Hamilton Women of Distinction Award.

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2016 / 17 Graduate Research Day

Join us for the 4th annual Graduate Research Day
Ewart Angus Centre and HSC-1A6 – February 23, 2017


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IMPACT project brings together several disciplines

Interdisciplinary projects continue to be a strong component of Biology at McMaster.  The IMPACT project brings together several disciplines which not only enhance the student experience but also can enhance the lives of people in our community.


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A new mode of growth for Streptomyces bacteria enables exploration of environments

A new mode of growth for Streptomyces bacteria enables exploration of environments
Streptomyces are complex bacteria renowned for their ability to produce medicinally useful compounds, and it has always been thought that Streptomyces are stationary organisms, rooted in place like plants. Recent work by Dr. Marie Elliot and PhD student Stephanie Jones in the Department of Biology has found that when Streptomyces are co-cultured with yeast, these bacteria use a previously unobserved mode of growth to move and explore their environment. This exploratory growth is associated with alkaline conditions, and can be communicated to other nearby Streptomyces species through airborne compounds.

Third Titan Arum about to bloom

The titan arum flowering is one of the extremes of the natural world, with a massive bloom that lasts only a week. On the first day, it is wide open and smells of rotting meat to attract its fly and carrion beetle pollinators. In 2014, the Biology greenhouse bought 3 large titan arum corms. Two of them, Phoebe and Magnus,  bloomed in 2015, while the third produced a single massive leaf. This third titan arum is about to bloom for the first time.