Patty Loew (wearing white sweater vest at center), professor of life sciences communication and a Bad River tribal member, talks about cultural history and digital storytelling with nine high school students from Wisconsin's Ho-Chunk Nation as the youth gathered near a Native American effigy mound and the Tree of Peace on Observatory Hill at the University of Wisconsin-Madison during autumn on Oct. 23, 2015. The UW Arboretum's Earth Partnership Program and UW-Madison's Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies hosted the group's one-day visit to campus. (Photo by Jeff Miller/UW-Madison)

Age-Old Traditions, New Media

There is no better place to begin this story than on an August morning in the remote reaches of the Bad River Ojibwe Reservation, afloat on Lake Superior’s shining Chequamegon Bay beneath an expansive, cloud-filled sky. Several flat-bottomed boats are lined up gunwale-to-gunwale, bobbing in the gentle waves. They’re filled with students—a mix of UW–Madison undergraduates and tribal youth—on a field project run through UW–Madison’s Global Health Institute. They are listening to Dana Jackson and Edith Leoso, Bad River tribal members and elders, talk about wild rice and the windswept, watery landscape around them, the sloughs and the tamarack stands, the distant islands and the shimmering headlands. [caption id="attachment_19535" align="alignleft" width="300"] Live from the lake: Patty Loew brings UW global health students and Bad River Ojibwe teens together to learn from each other and create digital stories about tribal life and concerns. Photo by Sevie Kenyon/UW-Madison CALS.[/caption] It is all ancestral home to the Ojibwe, and Jackson and Leoso bring it to life with their words. They tell the Ojibwe creation story of how their tribal forebears came to the land so many ...
Friday, April 15th, 2016
-20160415
economic-community-development
10
Age-Old Traditions, New Media

Milk, motherhood and the dairy cow

In the 1990s, dairy farmers were seeing a troubling trend in their herds. As cows produced more milk, their reproductive performance declined. This downward slope in reproduction, related to changes in the hormone metabolism of high-producing cows, spurred researchers into action. And CALS scientists found a solution—a reproductive synchronization system that could save Wisconsin dairy farmers more than $50 million each year. “The development of these systems has been one of the greatest technological advances in dairy cattle reproduction since artificial insemination,” says Paul Fricke, a CALS professor of dairy science and a UW–Extension specialist. “It is highly, highly significant.” [caption id="attachment_20013" align="alignright" width="300"] Dairy scientist Paul Fricke has developed a way to inseminate cows before they show signs of being in heat. Photo: Sevie Kenyon[/caption] For the past 20 years, Fricke has been working on the synchronization systems with fellow dairy science professor Milo Wiltbank. The systems, called Ovsynch, consist of treatments with naturally occurring hormones and are based on Wiltbank’s research into the basic biology of the cow reproductive cycle. The hormonal treatments synchronize the cycles so that farmers know when ...
Tuesday, June 7th, 2016
-20160607
food-systems
10
Milk, motherhood and the dairy cow

For senior Marjorie Kersten, the solution to global malnutrition is tiny

Where most of us see creepy crawlers, UW-Madison senior Marjorie Kersten sees the solution to global malnutrition. We’re talking about eating insects—or “entomophagy” if that word makes the idea easier to stomach. And Kersten, a 2015-16 Wisconsin Idea Fellow with the Morgridge Center for Public Service, believes that insect micro-livestock farming could be a nutrition revolution. Eating insects is, in fact, not at all uncommon. And insects can be densely packed with nutrition. In the United States it may be an obscure practice, but Kersten says we’re in the minority. “There are 130 nations that consume insects regularly, and there are 1,900 knowable species of edible insects,” said Kersten. “So there’s a lot more of it going on than people realize, I think.” Like most of us, Kersten never imagined she would end up devoting years of her life to edible insects. She was pre-vet for her first two years at UW-Madison. Oh, and she’s vegan. But spring semester her sophomore year, Kersten signed up on a whim for Health Impact Assessments of Global Environmental Health, taught by Dr. Jonathan Patz. The class changed everything. [caption ...
Tuesday, May 24th, 2016
-20160524
economic-community-development
10
For senior Marjorie Kersten, the solution to global malnutrition is tiny

Hancock Ag Research Station celebrates centennial on July 28

The University of Wisconsin-Madison Hancock Agricultural Research Station will celebrate its 100th anniversary on Thursday, July 28 with an expanded set of events during the station’s annual Potato and Vegetable Research Field Day. The public is invited to attend all—or portions—of the festivities, which include presentations on the station’s history, accomplishments and partnerships in the morning and late afternoon, as well as field day research talks during the afternoon. All events are free, and a complimentary lunch meal and dinner meal will be provided. When it opened in 1916, Hancock station became the university’s fourth UW experimental farm. Establishing the station was part of a university effort—mandated by the state legislature—to create a network of research farms “located on representative soil types that are materially different than that which obtains at the central station in Madison.” From the very beginning, there was strong community support for the station, with people actively searching for solutions to the unique challenges associated with farming in the Central Sands. At the time, the area’s sandy soil was easily eroded and low in both fertility and water-holding capacity. "The ...
Monday, June 27th, 2016
-20160627
uncategorized
10
Hancock Ag Research Station celebrates centennial on July 28
CALS in the Media

Who Is the Most Slothful Sloth?

The Science Explorer
-20160624
cals-in-the-media
10
Who Is the Most Slothful Sloth?
Basic Science

Judith Kimble serves on steering committee of Rescuing Biomedical Research

[caption id="attachment_20108" align="alignright" width="199"] Judith Kimble[/caption] Judith Kimble, a Vilas Professor in the Department of Biochemistry and investigator with the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, is working as a member of the Steering Committee for Rescuing Biomedical Research, a national effort to address “major problems” plaguing biomedical research. In 2014, four prominent policy leaders published a paper outlining systemic flaws in the biomedical research enterprise. This paper inspired Kimble to organize a first-of-its-kind campus initiative — in collaboration with Marsha Mailick, Vice Chancellor for Research and Graduate Education — to bring together UW­-Madison scientists, students, post-doctoral researchers, and national leaders to analyze the issue. The unique format of this campus-wide, discussion-based and months-long “workshop,” plus its resultant recommendations, were published in 2015, in the journal eLife and can be found online. Recently, Dr. Mike Lauer, who is Deputy Director of Extramural Research at the National Institutes of Health, blogged about the UW-Madison workshop and provided new data supporting its conclusions. “Biomedical research is in a dangerous state of disequilibrium with too few research dollars for the number of scientists being trained for a career of research,” Kimble ...
Wednesday, June 22nd, 2016
-20160622
basic-science
10
Judith Kimble serves on steering committee of Rescuing Biomedical Research
Basic Science

Research may point to new ways to deliver drugs into bacteria

An exhaustive look at how bacteria hold their ground and avoid getting pushed around by their environment shows how dozens of genes aid the essential job of protecting cells from popping when tensions run high. For centuries, biologists have considered cells the irreducible unit of life, and cells require various types of envelopes to contain the chemical conditions life demands. When cells lose their mechanical properties, they rupture and die, and many antibiotics attack the envelope in order to mechanically destabilize bacterial cells. But until now, it was unclear which genes (and the proteins they create) play a role in making the bacterial envelope rigid. [caption id="attachment_20095" align="alignright" width="300"] Douglas Weibel, professor of biochemistry, in his lab at UW–Madison. Photo: Laura Vanderploeg[/caption] In a study published on June 16 in Cell Systems, Douglas Weibel, a professor of biochemistry at the University of Wisconsin—Madison, and colleagues report how deleting, or “knocking out,” each one of approximately 4,000 genes in the bacteria Escherichia coli affects the stiffness and integrity of its envelope. The results were surprising due to the breadth of the different proteins found to be ...
Monday, June 20th, 2016
-20160620
basic-science
10
Research may point to new ways to deliver drugs into bacteria
CALS in the Media

How to get rid of annoying ants in your home

Food and Wine Magazine
-20160617
cals-in-the-media
10
How to get rid of annoying ants in your home