IUPUI biologist awarded a National Geographic Society grant to research flies as ‘environmental drones'
INDIANAPOLIS - A single bug could a messenger for researchers who are studying changing animal populations in a region, according to IUPUI biologist Christine Picard.
Picard is studying how blow flies can be 'environmental drones' as the flies collect information about animals that have died, animals that are still living and the diversity of animals in an environment. As decomposers, blow flies collect this data as they feed on remains of vertebrate animals as well as animal feces.
IUPUI biologists use ‘mini retinas’ to better understand connection between eye and brain
IUPUI biologists are growing 'mini retinas' in the lab from stem cells to mimic the growth of the human retina. The researchers hope to restore sight when critical connections between the eye and the brain are damaged. These models also allow researchers to better understand how cells in the retina develop and are organized. These results are published online in Scientific Reports, a Nature Research journal.
New fly species found in Indiana may indicate changing climate, says IUPUI researcher
INDIANAPOLIS -- A new type of blow fly spotted in Indiana points to shifting species populations due to climate change. Researchers at IUPUI have observed the first evidence of Lucilia cuprina in Indiana, an insect previously known to populate southern states from Virginia to California.
Researchers recorded the L. cuprina species more than two dozen times from 2015 to 2017 in parks and other public places throughout Central Indiana. The fly was observed as far north as Michigan in the 1950s during a short period of warmer temperatures but had not been found in this region since then.
NIH awards $1.75 million to IUPUI to further explore a promising brain obesity link
IUPUI biologist Nick Berbari has received a $1.75 million grant from the National Institutes of Health to study the connection between obesity and tiny hairlike projections on brain cells called cilia. Cilia are thought to function like a cell's antennae and help in communication between cells. The knowledge Berbari and his research team acquire could potentially open new therapeutic approaches to obesity, which impacts the health and longevity of over 93 million Americans.