Science/Nature

Skin Cells and Stem Cells to Study Down Syndrome

Anita Bhattacharyya, Senior Scientist, Waisman Center, UW-Madison, explores how human stem cells which have trisomy 21 provide an unparalleled way to study how the formation of the brain is different in people with Down syndrome. Stem cells can be made from the skin cells of individuals with Down syndrome and then turned into brain cells to study brain development.

Problems with the Cosmic Fuel Supply

Aleks Diamond-Stanic, Postdoctoral Fellow, Department of Astronomy, UW-Madison, discusses the importance of cosmic fuel, or the supply of gas within the galaxies, in the creation of star formation.

Past, Present, and Future of Vehicle Electrification

Theodore Bohn, Senior Power Electronics Engineer, Argonne National Laboratory, presents a history of electric vehicles over the past 100 years. Bohn discusses the pros and cons of the different types of battery power that have been used, how electric cars are currently being powered and what the future looks like.

New Hormone-Receptor System in Plants

Mike Sussman, Director, UW Biotechnology Center, describes a signaling pathway that regulates cell expansion in the root cells of Arabidopsis plants, a model organism related to cabbage and mustard that is the plant scientist's fruit fly. This discovery is the first such pathway found for the plant kingdom, revealing the details of how a particular hormone docks with a cell.

Electric Organs in the Strong-Voltage Electric Eel

Lindsay Traeger, Graduate Student, Department of Biochemistry, UW-Madison, discusses the electric eel, a freshwater fish from South America, which can generate voltage using three electric organs in its tail made up of electrocytes. Understanding the complex traits of electrocytes may help with the development of biobatteries.

Traces of Prescription Drugs Found in Lake Michigan

Curtis Hedman, Advanced Microbiologist, Wisconsin State Lab of Hygiene, discusses the pharmaceuticals and personal care products (PPCPs) found two miles offshore from Milwaukee in Lake Michigan. Toxicological findings show that the contaminants were found at concentrations considered at medium or high risk for aquatic organisms.

Be Awesome Without Their Permission

Alexis Ohanian, Founder, Reddit, author of “Without Their Permission: How the 21st Century Will Be Made, Not Managed,” shares his philosophy on entrepreneurship and the path he took to co-found Reddit, one of the most popular online, social news websites.

Biology, Business and the Brain

William A. Linton, Chairman & CEO, Promega Corporation, Fitchburg, reflects on his life, focusing on why he started Promega Corporation. Linton discusses the current relationship between the business, community and education. He shares his thoughts on the future of scientific research, involvement in the community and where his biotechnology corporation fits in.

Canoes: The Art and Science of Hydro Dynamic Design

Liese Pfeifer, Academic Curator, Design Gallery, UW School of Human Ecology; James Steiner, Outreach Program Coordinator, Center for Integrative Design, UW-Madison; and Nick Molzahn, student, Dept. of Chemical & Biological Engineering, UW-Madison, discuss high performance racing canoes, concrete canoes and ancient canoe artifacts, exhibited at the Design Gallery at the School of Human Ecology.

The World's Largest Radio Telescope

Eric Wilcots, Professor, Department of Astronomy, UW-Madison, discusses the collaborative effort, which includes University of Wisconsin astronomers, to build the world’s largest radio telescope. The telescope will have a collecting area equal to one square kilometer, making it the most sensitive radio detector in the world.

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