Antarctica is a cold, mostly barren continent, defined by its isolation and snow. It is also a place that has been set aside for peace and science. The challenges of this desolate and harsh environment provide the necessary surroundings to foster teamwork and collaboration for those living and researching there.
Each year since 2005, a group of students from the University of Waterloo has been embracing the challenging, but rewarding world of synthetic biology, problem solving and researching for the iGEM (International Genetically Engineered Machine) competition. This competition brings together teams from countries around the world to showcase projects, and learn from each other at an annual conference.
Leaving family, friends and Wi-Fi might not be most people’s idea of a dream experience. However, for biology Professor Kirsten Müller, these things are necessary for her upcoming once-in-a-lifetime trip to Antarctica. In this trip, she will travel alongside 99 other women in STEMM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math, and Medicine) fields as the fourth cohort of Homeward Bound.
University of Waterloo researchers have developed a powerful new online tool that allows users to navigate through an interactive microbial tree of life, and to generate new scientific hypotheses and discoveries.
By integrating data across thousands of microbial genomes, “AnnoTree” provides a comprehensive framework for exploring the evolution of microbial genes and functions, and can be used to advance research across a wide range of industries including microbiology, biotechnology, industrial products, biofuels, and food science.
Dr. R.C. Rooney, Associate Professor, Department of Biology, at the University of Waterloo and Dr. David Schindler, Professor Emeritus of Ecology, Biological Sciences Department, at the University of Alberta. Both are among more than 30 signatories to a call-to action letter recently sent to Federal Environment Minister Catherine McKenna.
In 2011, Heidi Swanson’s phone rang. An unfamiliar voice said, “Hi, Heidi? This is George. I heard you work on fish mercury and that you are good at working with communities.”
Eight years later, Swanson and George, who turned out to be George Low, coordinator for the Dehcho Aboriginal Aquatic Resources and Oceans Management program in the Northwest Territories, are planning their seventh field season together.