University of Missouri Research Board

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University of Missouri

Biology

Anne Maglia

What’s Wrong with the Frogs?

An interview with Anne Maglia, Professor, Biology, Missouri S&T

Across the globe, a mysterious epidemic is attacking the frog population, causing malformation and population decline. Though the exact cause is unknown, many scientists believe environmental components are to blame. Anne Maglia is hoping to help stop this epidemic. “These guys have been around for millions and millions of years,” she observes, “and when we see them starting to decline, we have some pretty good ideas that the environment itself is in bad shape.”

Elizabeth Kellogg

The Power of Grasses

An interview with Elizabeth Kellogg, Professor, Biology, UM St. Louis

Over half of the world’s calories come from grasses, but imagine generating enough fuel from grass to run a car or even light up a house. Actually, the dream of turning a blade of grass into usable energy is not as far-fetched as it might seem. Doing her part toward realizing this goal, Elizabeth Kellogg, Professor of Biology at the University of Missouri-St. Louis, is researching the history behind switchgrass and its relationship with other grasses.

Bethany Zolman

Making Mutants

An interview with Bethany Zolman, Assistant Professor, Biology, UM St. Louis

While most people rip weeds from their front yards without a second thought, Bethany Zolman spends her time studying one virtually unknown weed, Arabidopsis thaliana. The assistant professor of biology at the University of Missouri-St. Louis finds that this plant serves as a perfect model organism for research because it grows quickly, is easily manipulated, and is comparable to the systems of crop plants.

Xiao-Qiang Yu

His Patients Buzz

An interview with Xiao-Qiang Yu, Associate Professor, Biology, UM Kansas City

Xiao-Qiang (Sean) Yu is looking for a way to cure disease, but he has never been to medical school. His diagnoses take place under a microscope, not on an examination table, and his primary patients don’t talk much—instead, they buzz. By studying insect immune systems, Yu is learning how to prevent disease in humans, and give medicine another weapon against infection.