AUBURN UNIVERSITY – Auburn University professor Kenneth Halanych and his colleagues have made a new scientific discovery: acorn worms found in deep waters surrounding Antarctica secrete a tube around their bodies. The discovery of an acorn worm with the ability to make tubes is significant as the only other worms of this type known to make tubes lived more than 500 million years ago near the dawn of animal life on earth.
The group’s discovery comes on the heels of the first of two Antarctic research cruises. Last January, a team of scientists from the College of Sciences and Mathematics’ William P. and Ruth W. Molette Environmental and Climate Change Studies Laboratory spent six weeks on a research cruise exploring the genetic diversity of marine organisms found in the waters surrounding Earth’s southernmost continent.
AUBURN UNIVERSITY – Two Auburn University professors have developed a disease-detection technology that could be the beginning of handheld, point-of-care devices – a breakthrough that would let health care professionals, first responders and even individuals quickly do blood tests for a variety of illnesses and conditions.
Associate professor Christopher Easley and professor Curtis Shannon, both in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry in the College of Sciences and Mathematics, led the research team that published its results in the March 27 issue of the Journal of the American Chemical Society.
AUBURN UNIVERSITY – Following a national search, Purdue University Professor and Head of the Department of Physics Nicholas Giordano has been named dean of the Auburn University College of Sciences and Mathematics, effective Aug. 5.
“The experience Dr. Giordano brings from both the classroom and administrative perspectives will be very valuable not only to the college but the university as a whole,” said Auburn Provost Tim Boosinger. “We look forward to the level of leadership he will provide.”
AUBURN UNIVERSITY – Thanh “TJ” Nguyen, a senior in mechanical engineering at Auburn University, has received the National Student Employee of the Year Award from the National Student Employment Association. The award was presented to Nguyen April 9 at a reception for the nominees at The Hotel at Auburn University and Dixon Conference Center.
Nguyen is employed by the Outreach Office of the College of Sciences and Mathematics, where he has served as technical director for the War Eagle BEST robotics program and counselor for the Science Matters summer program for children. He is responsible for maintaining technology for the office and has created user manuals for new equipment. He was nominated by Mary Lou Ewald, director of the Outreach Office.
AUBURN UNIVERSITY – The College of Sciences and Mathematics will hold an event, “Celebrating Biodiversity With E.O. Wilson,” on Wednesday, April 10, at The Hotel at Auburn University and Dixon Conference Center to commemorate the opening of the Biodiversity Learning Center. The event will include a presentation by world-renowned biologist and two-time Pulitzer Prize-winner E.O. Wilson, who will share his thoughts on the current state and emerging trends of biodiversity.
“Celebrating Biodiversity With E.O. Wilson” begins at 6:30 p.m. and event seating may be reserved for $100 per person or tables of 10 for $1,000. A reception will take place from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. to allow participants an opportunity to meet Wilson one-on-one. The reception and dinner is $250 per person; seats are limited. Sponsorship options are also available. Proceeds from the event will support the Auburn University Museum of Natural History, which will be located in the Biodiversity Learning Center.