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July 2019, Volume 27
  1. CREATE Grant
  2. Biozone Orientation
  3. Summer Retreat: The Toronto Zoo
  4. BZ Faculty Promoted!
  5. Summer Student Spotlight
  6. June Graduations
  7. BioZone Awards
  8. BZ Game Night
  9. Lumières Podcast Launch
  10. New Publications

1. New CREATE Grant

BioZone has been awarded an NSERC’s Collaborative Research and Training Experience (CREATE) Program grant.

The CREATE for BioZone: Open science centre for industrial biotechnology in the circular economy grant is led by Prof. Master and supported by BioZone professors Edwards, Mahadevan, Allen, Saville, and Yakunin. Please see the full team here.

The CREATE for BioZone is focused on developing biotechnologies for the circular economy and enhancing training for students in three main areas: data fluency, innovation in entrepreneurship, and communication and leadership. Workshops and courses developed for the CREATE will be open to all BioZone members. For more information please visit the project website

Read more about all three of U of T's CREATE awardees here.

2. BZ Orientation 

For most people, the beginning of summer is signalled by warm weather, and the sound of birds chirping. Here in BioZone, the first clues of summer are brought on by our summer orientation for new students and employees!

On May 31st, a room full of fresh new faces had the chance to learn a thing or two from many experienced BioZone veterans.

Even for those that are not new to a lab environment, there is always something new to learn at these sessions, so hosting them for new students is important. The session was rounded off with a tour of the labs, a pizza lunch and a fun little quiz to test what they learned!

Thanks to everybody that helped out or participated!

3. Summer Retreat: The Toronto Zoo!

Summer heat feeling unbearable? Haven’t yet completed your grad school koalafications? These puns? Hawkward?

We’ve still got animals on our mind. On June 18th for our annual summer retreat, BioZone students went to the Toronto Zoo!

We spent a wonderful day discovering and learning about all sorts of animals: giraffes, penguins, flamingos, alligators. You name a cool animal, we were probably fortunate enough to see it.

Here’s a couple of fun facts that we learned:

1. Penguins give rocks as a mating ritual.

2. Arctic foxes change color as they grow older.

4. BZ Faculty Promoted!

Two of our very own BioZone professors will be promoted on July 1 this year! 

Professor Alison McGuigan is being promoted to Full Professor in the tenure stream, and Elizabeth Edwards will be promoted to University Professor (the most distinguished rank at U of T).

Congratulations to you both for reaching these career milestones!

5. Summer Student Spotlight

Are you always wondering about the new faces you see wandering BioZone?

This recurring segment will give you a peek into the lives of some of our many summer students, to help us get to know them better and spark some conversations!

First off, we have Jeremy Rau!
Whose lab are you in, and what’s your summer project?

I’m in one of Elizabeth Edwards’ labs helping with Daisy, the anaerobic digester.

What is your major?

Bioengineering at McGill University.

What do you do for fun?

I love to be outside with friends or family and play sports such as basketball and tennis!
Next, we have Matthew Mascioni!
Whose lab are you in, and what’s your summer project?

I’m in the Master lab and my summer project is engineering an enzyme to more efficiently transform a component of plant biomass (methyl glucuronic acid).

What is your major?

Chemical engineering!

What do you do for fun?

Usually programming and running :)


Stay tuned to meet more summer students in next month's newsletter!

6. June Graduations

In June, a number of our beloved BioZone students graduated:
  • Rudraksh Malhotra, M.Eng., Allen Lab
  • Akhila Jonnalagadda, M.A.Sc., Diosady Lab
  • Kevin Correia, Ph.D., Mahadevan Lab
  • Taeho Kim, Ph.D., Yakunin/ Mahadevan Lab
  • Kylie O'Donnell, Ph.D., Master Lab
  • Shyam Srinivasan, Ph.D., Master Lab
Congratulations to all of you, and best of luck in your future endeavours! 
Some of our happy graduates!

7. BioZone Awards

Recently some BioZoners have been recognized for their work at various events around North America!

PhD student Oluwasegun Modupe, supervised by Prof. Levente Diosady, won the poster competition at this year's Institute of Food Technologists meeting in New Orleans, Louisiana. IFT is the largest food organization in the world, with 20-25000 conference participants each year! His winning poster was entitled Quadruple Fortification of Salt for the Delivery of Iron, Iodine, Folic Acid and Vitamin B12.

Courtney Toth, a PDF in Prof. Elizabeth Edwards' lab, won the "Gerrit Voordouw Award for Best Presentation" at the 7th International Symposium on Applied Microbiology and Molecular Biology in Oil Systems in Halifax, the largest event discussing microbiology and molecular biology in the oil and gas industry! This conference explores the application of emerging microbial and molecular tools to help resolve challenges faced by the industry. Courtney's presentation was entitled Anaerobic BTEX Bioremediation is a Numbers Game.

Congratulations to you both!

8.  BioZone Game Night

On July 25th we gathered around the table in 407 for Game Night!

We were fully equipped with snacks and games. We ended up bonding over quite an eventful match of Quelf.

We hope to see you at our future bonding events!

9. Lumières Podcast Launch

Come celebrate with the Lumières team and learn what’s happening in different fields of science! This is a unique and engaging experience, where 6 scientists and 1 explorer talk about the significance of their work for the community and share a life defining moment story.

Lumières is a brand new podcast where scientists worldwide are interviewed in an effort to bridge the gap between experts and the general public.

The podcast is launching live in Toronto, where a panel of scientists from different fields will be talking about what they do and why it's important.

The talks are followed by Q&A and a 1 minute open pitch for anyone to share with us their research, projects or upcoming events. There will be snacks and drinks, as well as lots of opportunities to network and meet our star guests in person.

BioZone's own Dr. Peter Stogios, Senior Research Associate, will be part of our panel of experts at the launch.

To find out more, click here.

August 23 | 6.30-9.30 PM | Miami Ad School | $45 (includes 1 FREE beer)
 

10. New Publications

1. Diosady, L.L., Mannar, M.V. and Krishnaswamy, K. (2019). Improving the lives of millions through new double fortification of salt technology. Maternal & child nutrition. 15(S3):e12773.

2. Mollerup, F., Aumala, V., Parikka, K., Mathieu, Y., Brumer, H., Tenkanen, M. and Master, E. (2019). A family AA5_2 carbohydrate oxidase from Penicillium rubens displays functional overlap across the AA5 family. Public Library of Science one. 14(5)p.e0216546.
Please email us if you have something to add to the next edition of the BioZone Newsletter
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