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UTSA students win research awards from American Society for Microbiology

Micro Bio Students

UTSA students Ann Reyes, Tricia Van Laar and Steve Rodriguez

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(Nov. 20, 2009)--One UTSA undergraduate student and two doctoral students researching topics in microbiology and infectious diseases won competitive awards for their poster and oral presentations at the Nov. 5-7 annual meeting of the Texas Branch of American Society for Microbiology at the University of Texas at Tyler.

Ann Reyes, an undergraduate majoring in biology and math and Minority Biomedical Research Support-Research Initiative for Scientific Enhancement (MBRS-RISE) scholar, was awarded the Sam Kaplan Poster Award for second place among posters presented by undergraduates at the conference. The poster showcased her research characterizing the role of polyamines in the patho-physiology of Borrelia burgdorferi, the bacterium that causes Lyme's disease. Reyes' research is supported by the UTSA MBRS-RISE program.

Tricia Van Laar, a third-year cellular and molecular biology doctoral student, won the O.B. William Award (third place) for her oral presentation in general microbiology. The presentation described the characterization of a novel chemical pathway in Borrelia burgdorferi that leads to the development of a metabolic intermediate that could contribute to several aspects critical for the survival and infectivity of B. burgdorferi.

Steve Rodriguez, a fifth-year cellular and molecular biology doctoral student, won the S. E. Sulkin Award (third place) for his oral presentation on medical microbiology. Rodriguez discussed a pathogenic component of the Franciscella tularensis genome that is essential for virulence.

"The American Society for Microbiology's competitive awards are excellent indicators of the caliber of work carried out by our graduate and undergraduate students at UTSA," said Janakiram Seshu, assistant professor of microbiology and a member of UTSA's South Texas Center for Emerging Infectious Diseases. "These accolades also increase the profile of our research efforts by helping us attract top-notch students from different regions of Texas to graduate and undergraduate programs at UTSA."



Dec. 1, 9 a.m.

CITE Venture Competition & Exposition

The annual Center for Innovation, Technology and Entrepreneurship (CITE) 100K Venture Competition and Exposition will be held on the Main Campus on Dec. 1. Twenty-eight teams from across the university will exhibit their project; six teams will compete for a prize pool of more than $100,000 in funding to launch their new venture / company. More than 650 students have participated in launching new technology ventures.
Biotechnology, Sciences and Engineering (BSE 2.102), Main Campus

Dec. 3, 5:30 p.m.

UTSA Downtown String Project Winter Concert

This concert features 50 community children performing music in the UTSA Downtown String Project Winter Concert. The children, led by UTSA music students studying to be music teachers, will join together in playing the Theme from Batman at their concert. The Batman of San Antonio, a local celebrity figure, will make an appearance at the concert. This event is free.
Buena Vista Theatre, Downtown Campus

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Did You Know?

UTSA writes the book on all-digital libraries

As touch screens and e-books demand more and more attention from both casual readers and scholars, many people say the handwriting is on the wall for the printed page.

At UTSA, the handwriting is on the wall for a library that doesn't have any printed books.

Since March 2010, the bookless library in the Applied Engineering and Technology Building has given UTSA students an innovative way to read, research and work with each other to solve problems.

With ultra-modern furniture and a décor featuring desktop computers, scanners and LCD screens, the AET Library is designed to engage students in an online format. But it also offers group study niches and study rooms with whiteboards and glass walls on which students can write. The space encourages teamwork, communications and problem solving for the next generation of scientists and professional engineers.

Did you know? The UTSA AET Library is the nation's first completely bookless library on a college or university campus. It served as a model for Bexar County's first-in-the-nation public bookless library system and one of its branches, the Dr. Ricardo Romo BiblioTech.

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