October 2017

  • Congratulations to the CBBRe/N3 Graduate Student Travel Award winners - Clarissa Staton, biology, for the Society for Neuroscience Conference; Casey Finnicum, basic biomedical sciences, for the American Society of Human Genetics Annual Meeting; Pasan Fernando, biology, to attend the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers International Conference on Bioinformatics and Biomedicine.

September 2017

  • Congratulations to USDN3 director and basic biomedical sciences associate professor Brian Burrell, Ph.D., on receiving the USD President’s Award for Research Excellence - Established Faculty.
  • Congratulations to basic biomedical sciences professor Samuel Sathyanesan, Ph.D., on receiving the USD President’s Award for Research Excellence - Innovation and Entrepreneurship.
  • Congratulations to Human Functional Imaging Core director Kelene Fercho, Ph.D., on being accepted into the neuromodulation training course with the National Center of Neuromodulation for Rehabilitation, a very prestigious and competitive training program.

August 2017

  • Congratulations to Lee Baugh, Ph.D., and Kelene Fercho, Ph.D., on their travel awards to attend the National Institutes of Health-sponsored Clinical Neurostimulation Conference in Albuquerque, New Mexico this October. The field of neurostimulation and neuromodulation offers exciting promises for improving human behavior and reducing symptoms of brain and mental illness.
  • Congratulations to Gina Forster, Ph.D., and Lee Baugh, Ph.D., on their award for their project “MRI: Acquisition of Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation Instrumentation to Advance Understanding of the Brain.” The $150,000 major research instrumentation grant from the National Science Foundation will support the purchase of new equipment for the Human Functional Imaging Core.
  • Congratulations to Jill Weimer, Ph.D., and Robin Miskimins, Ph.D., on their training grant, which will fund the Developmental Research Program for Medical Students (DRPMS). The program is designed to meet the future needs of health-related research by developing physicians who use evidence-based medicine in practice and contribute to translational research. Six students per year will be accepted into the DRPMS.
  • After a close competition with many excellent presentations, four students emerged as the winners of the poster competition at the CBBRe Research Symposium. This year's winners in each division were:
    • First place, undergraduate division – Megan Jorgensen, presenting "The Role of Endocannabinoid Signaling in Producing Injury-Induced Sensitization."
    • Second place, undergraduate division – Joshua McWhirt, presenting "Stress Induced Changes in Hippocampal Gene Expression."
    • First place, graduate/postdoctorate/staff division – Kelene Fercho, presenting "Addition of Pupil Diameter Measurements Increases Brain Computer Interface Performance."
    • Second place, graduate/postdoctorate/staff division – Hanming Zhang, presenting "Inhibition of Phosphodiesterase 1 Confers Striking Therapeutic Benefit to HFpEF in Mice."

July 2017

  • The Center for Genetics & Behavioral Health, led by USD Professor Gina Forster, Ph.D., has been awarded a five-year grant for $3.4 million to study genetic and environmental influences in post-traumatic stress disorder, placing South Dakota at the forefront of personalized treatment for trauma-related illness.
  • USD has been awarded a $1 million grant by the Howard Hughes Medical Institute as part of their Inclusive Excellence Initiative to enhance the participation and retention of underrepresented minorities in the natural sciences. Brian Burrell, associate professor of basic biomedical sciences, led the faculty team behind the effort, which included members from five schools and programs across the university.
  • Brenna Bray, a graduate student in basic biomedical sciences, has been invited to join a team of graduate students and faculty from the tri-state region to debate issues in science training and advocacy at the Nebraska Physiological Society meeting in October.
  • Congratulations to basic biomedical sciences professor Doug Martin, Ph.D., who was awarded the 2017 Sanford School of Medicine Class of 1958 Basic Biomedical Science Award.

June 2017

  • Sara Lowmaster, Ph.D., a professor in the Department of Psychology, received a travel award from the Great Plains Institutional Development Award Program Infrastructure for Clinical and Translational Research to develop clinical and translational research-related collaborations.
  • Amy Elliott, Ph.D., Sanford Research, was named co-chair of the National Institutes of Health Biospecimens Working Group for the ECHO Study, which studies how environmental exposures affect child health and development.
  • Brandon Gray, a graduate student in clinical psychology, is completing a summer internship with the Mental Health and Substance Use Evidence Research Department at the World Health Organization in Geneva, Switzerland. He is assisting with projects related to mental health in emergencies.

May 2017

  • 2016 Summer Program for Undergraduate Research in Addiction students Kami Pearson and Aaron Fleischer were named UDiscover Scholars for the summer of 2017.
  • Basic biomedical sciences graduate student Katie Grausam, of the Zhao lab, is the first author on a paper which was accepted for publication at Cancer Research for her article entitled: "Atonal homolog 1 promotes leptomeningeal dissemination and metastasis of the Sonic Hedgehog subgroup medulloblastoma."

April 2017

  • The CBBRe Spring 2017 Graduate Student Travel Award winners include Rebecca Sistad of the Department of Psychology. Sistad is presenting at the National American Psychological Association Convention in Washington, D.C. from August 3-6, 2017. The other winner, basic biomedical sciences graduate student Brenna Bray, presented at the Ninth International Meeting on Steroids and the Nervous System in Torino, Italy from February 11-17, 2017.
  • fMRI specialist and Human Functional Imaging Core manager Kelene Fercho, Ph.D., has been selected to participate in the highly competitive National Institutes of Health-sponsored Summer School in Adaptive Neurotechnologies.
  • Congratulations to Kathleen Brown-Rice, Ph.D. Her manuscript, "Counselor Educators and Students with Problems of Professional Competence: A Survey and Discussion" won the 2016 Outstanding Scholar Award in Research by The Professional Counselor.
  • Sharleen Yuan, a third-year medical student who is also in the basic biomedical sciences Ph.D. program, won the Young Achiever's National Abstract Competition in the medical student basic research category at the 2017 American College of Physicians Internal Medicine Annual Conference in San Diego. Her presentation was titled "The Mechanisms of NMDAR-Dependent Long-Term Potentiation in Nociceptive Synapses."

March 2017

  • Mick Watt, Ph.D., was appointed the Donald S. MacKay Distinguished Professor of Research, effective July 1, 2017. This professorship was established by Ms. Mercedes MacKay, who was the librarian for the state of South Dakota from 1939 to 1973 and credited with increasing literacy in the state.
  • Sarah Wollersheim Shervey, Ph.D. was accepted into the School Psychology Research Collaboration Conference (SPRCC) for Early Career Scholars. It is an opportunity for emerging scholars in the field to work with top researchers, as well as with other early emerging scholars, in the field of school psychology.
  • Brenna Bray, a basic biomedical sciences graduate student, was awarded a USD Graduate Research and Creative Scholarship Grant for her research "Corticosterone in the ventral hippocampus differentially affects accumbal dopamine output in drug-naïve and amphetamine-withdrawn rats."

February 2017

  • Brenna Bray, a BBS graduate student, was awarded a fellowship from the International Meeting on Steroids and Nervous System to present her research in Torino, Italy in February 2017.
  • Rebecca Sistad, a current undergraduate Summer Program for Undergraduate Research in Addiction student, was awarded the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism/National Institute on Drug Abuse travel award to present her research at the 2016 American Psychological Association Convention in Denver, Colorado in August 2016. Her research examines cognitive and behavioral factors that contribute to alcohol problems in college students.
  • Brenna Bray, a graduate student in basic biomedical sciences, was awarded a fellowship from the International Meeting on Steroids and Nervous System to present her research in Torino, Italy.
  • Doug Martin, Ph.D. was awarded an R01 grant from the National Institutes of Health to study “Cardiac sympathetic afferent reflex control of venous function.”

January 2017

  • Jon Brudvig, a second year Ph.D. student in the basic biomedical sciences program, was the recipient of a 2016 National Defense Science and Engineering Graduate (NDSEG) fellowship. The NDSEG is a highly competitive pre-doctoral fellowship funded by the Department of Defense. It supports individuals who have demonstrated the ability and special aptitude for advanced training in science and engineering. Brudvig's research examines development of the brain and how it is altered to result in Batton’s disease, a neurological disorder in children.
  • Katie Grausman, a basic biomedical sciences and Sanford Research graduate student, was awarded the Gary N. Piquette Memorial Scholarship. The scholarship is awarded to a doctoral student in the cell biology area within basic biomedical sciences.

November 2016

  • Brenna Bray, a basic biomedical sciences graduate student, was awarded first place in the graduate student division of the poster competition at the Nebraska Physiological Society's annual meeting in Omaha, Nebraska. Her poster was titled "Corticosterone in the ventral hippocampus differentially affects accumbal dopamine release in drug-naïve and amphetamine-withdrawn rats."

October 2016

  • Research enhancement pilot grant awards were given to Harry Freeman, Ph.D., and Etienne Gnimpieba for their research proposal "Oxytoccin and Attachment Preference Among Young Adults." Awards were also given to Gabrielle Strouse, Ph.D., Lisa Newland, Ph.D. and Dan Mourlam, Ph.D., for their research proposal "Should I Flip or Should I Click? Parent and Child Conceptualizations and Usage of Print and Digital Media Formats: Links to Children's Learning."
  • Jon Brudvig was awarded a CBBRe trainee research grant for his research proposal "Novel Roles for MARCKS in Cortical Development and Midline Ason Crossing," under the mentorship of Jill Weimer, Ph.D.
  • Congratulations to 2016 Summer Program for Undergraduate Research in Addiction student Kami Pearson and undergraduate researcher Eric Graack, who were both awarded travel grants by the Council for Undergraduate Research and Creative Scholarship to present at and attend the Society of Neuroscience Meeting in San Diego, California, in November 2016.
  • Congratulations to Aaron Fleischer, a 2016 Summer Program for Undergraduate Research in Addiction (SPURA) student, who received a USD undergraduate travel award from the Council for Undergraduate Research and Creative Scholarship. The travel award will allow him to present his research in the faculty for undergraduate neuroscience poster session at the annual Society for Neuroscience meeting in San Diego, California. He will be presenting "The effects of mild traumatic brain injury on brain-derived neurotrophic factor expression in the limbic system."
  • John Fanta, a 2015 SPURA alum, attended the annual meeting of the Sioux Valley chapter of the American Chemical Society. His poster “Modulating Effective Acetylcholine Concentration Using Metal Organic Super-Containers (MOSCs)” won third place.