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Neurobiology

High numerical aperture cryogenic localization microscopy: a technique for increased precision of super-resolution reconstructions

The precision of localization-based super-resolution microscopy techniques fundamentally relies on the point-spread function of the optical system and the number of photons one can collect. Here, we report that by using a high-numerical aperture objective lens and a custom cryogenic stage, we are able to increase photon yield by 2-3 fold over room temperature, thereby achieving more precise super-resolution reconstructions of complex subcellular structures.

Cellular Form: The Basis of Healthy Function

Our program seeks to determine how cells and tissues integrate chemical and mechanical information to guide normal growth and homeostasis with the ultimate goal of being able to guide these processes with small molecules for therapeutic purposes.  To do this, our core research is focused on fundamental biomedical discovery, using genetic, biochemical, and cell biophysical approaches and small molecule screening with the model organism Dictyostelium discoideum.  Initially, we focused heavily on cytokinesis as a model cell morphogenic event.  Cytokinesis naturally enca

Connections: the heart of student learning

Making connections and a sense of belonging to the university community enhances student learning. As a first generation college student and a veteran, I understand how important such connections can be.

Outreach before students enter the university can be instrumental in acquiring skills to be successful in college. Laboratories can be a fun and instructive means for outreach and teaching. The cockroach leg preparation lends itself to student learning from middle school through graduate education. I will discuss the modular design of this preparation.

Aerial autonomy at insect scale: What flying insects can tell us about robotics and vice versa

Insect-sized aerial robots will be deployed where their small size, low cost, and maneuverability give them an advantage over larger robots. For example, they could deploy in swarms to follow airborne plumes to locate gas leaks in dense piping infrastructure. However, miniaturization poses challenges because the physics of scaling dictates that many technologies used in larger aircraft cannot operate effectively at the size of insects. These include propellers, the Global Positioning System, and general-purpose microprocessors.

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