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Past Seminars

BUGSS hosts an ever-changing array of seminars, Open Mic nights, open houses, and workshops. Our Eventbrite page has the most current listing of seminars, workshops, and courses.

Unraveling the Mysteries of Long-COVID

Written by Arushi Singh

We had a fantastic talk from Dr. Andrea (Andi) Levine, an Assistant Professor of Medicine in the division of Pulmonary & Critical Care Medicine at the University of Maryland School of Medicine. She discussed the current definition of Long-COVID syndrome, what we know about who gets it, why they do, and what we can do […]

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Microbes in Space

Written by Arushi Singh

  The Microbes in Space seminar, co-sponsored by the Maryland Branch of the American Society for Microbiology, highlighted projects conducted in space relating to microbiology. Seminar attendees were joined by Dr. Jennifer Kerr of Notre Dame of Maryland University to present on some key studies happening in space and her own lab’s research. Kerr first […]

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Digital Equity in Baltimore – Building a Shared Future Together

Written by Arushi Singh

Last fall, with the promise of historic federal and state investments for community recovery, among other important initiatives, Baltimore City announced its Digital Equity Framework – a plan to permanently close its digital divide within the next eight years. Free public Wi-Fi in outdoor community gathering places has been announced as part of the plan, […]

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SWEET Science: Responsible Bioengineering for Amateurs and Educators

A plant geneticist’s discussion on alternative methods of bioengineering. Sebastion Cocioba discussed using sugars as a means of selection in molecular cloning and plant genetic engineering, removing antibiotics and herbicides from the equation entirely. Sebastian Cocioba is a plant biotechnology researcher with a focus on the production of commercially and industrially valuable plant species. He […]

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Counting Shrimp with Sonar

Ever wonder where shrimp come from? Shrimp farming is harder than you might think! Agriculture and aquaculture farmers need to understand how many plants and animals they are growing on land or in the water to make decisions on their farm. For aqua-farmers counting shrimp is a major challenge because their animals are grown in […]

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Computer Aided Drug Design: Taking an Idea to the Clinic

Computer-aided drug design (CADD) methods have made a significant impact on the discovery and development of new drugs for treating disease. Our speakers, Alexander MacKerell and Paul Shapiro, Professors of Pharmaceutical Sciences at the University of Maryland School of Medicine, provided us with an an overview of CADD approaches and their applications in designing new […]

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3D Bioprinting Made Easy

You may have heard of bioprinting, where cells and biomaterials can be printed to create custom organs and tissues. But did you know that bioprinting can be achieved through the same techniques used to get graphics printed on a t-shirt? This talk on bioprinting discusses unique strategies to bioprint at home!

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Healthy Harbor and Mr. Trash Wheel

What is a trash wheel? What role do they play in protecting Baltimore’s harbor and wildlife from pollution? Adam Lindquist, the director of Healthy Harbor, answered all of our questions about our trash-intercepting, googly-eyed neighbors and the rest of Healthy Harbor’s initiatives!

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Rethinking Meat to Feed 10 billion

Growing meat directly from plants, microbes, and animal cells will allow us to build a food system that is better for human, animal, and planetary health. However, catalyzing this paradigm shift is a vast, multidisciplinary effort that requires scientists and engineers from disciplines ranging from tissue engineering and synthetic biology to computational science and chemical […]

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Making plastics from methane

Mango Materials is a San Francisco-based company that manufactures biodegradable materials using bacteria that feed on waste biogas (methane). The company’s end product is a naturally occurring polyhydroxyalkanoate (PHA) polymer that can biodegrade in many different environments. Since 2012, Mango has developed PHA that can be used to create textile fibers as a polyester replacement […]

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Covid-19: Vaccines and Variants

Thanks to Dr. Nick Wohlgemuth, a virologist at St. Jude’s Children’s Research hospital, for a fantastic seminar on the epidemiology and natural history of the SARS-CoV-2 virus, what the emergence of variants means for the vaccines, and how to tell if someone is protected.

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Disruptive Innovations to Lower Healthcare Costs

In this seminar, Dr. Govind Rao of UMBC discussed manufacturing biologics on demand, novel approaches to detect Covid-19, and low-cost incubators for preemies with built-in sensors. Amazing developments, and we discuss how they can change the health care landscape!

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Biology Meets Art

We had a terrific seminar from Dr. Heidi Hehnly, a leader in exploring the interface between the cytoskeleton and cell membranes, and Dr. Boryana Rossa, an interdisciplinary artist, about their work in BioArt and their efforts to bring faculty and grad students together to share their research or look at it from the perspective of […]

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Science Slam! December 2020

Science Slams are a great way to learn about some remarkable science that is going on in Charm City! These 5-10 min science talks from local scientists are hosted by Johns Hopkins Project Bridge and BUGSS. At our December event, 5 local scientists presented their work: Sebastian Markert, “Beam me up Wormy”   Priya DasSarma, […]

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Ask A Virologist

Viruses (okay one in particular!) have become a central part of our lives, changing most aspects of our day-to-day routine. These tiny, and not so tiny, snippets of nucleic acid and protein can have profound effects. What is a virus? How do they work? Why is SARS-2 having such a profound effect compared to other […]

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Covid-19 and mental health

Covid-19 has dramatically affected all of our lives. There have been a broad range of emotional effects related to the pandemic, and certain stressors have affected a large majority of the population. On August 28, 2020, Dr. Sonia Bansal of the Maryland Psychiatric Research Center at the University of Maryland School of Medicine discussed recent […]

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Making Sense of CBD

Is this the latest snake oil or do CBD products really have tremendous healing potential? Watch the video of our seminar to learn more!

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Do Asteroids Really Hit the Earth?

What are asteroids? Do they hit the Earth? Has anyone ever been hit by one? Watch the video of our seminar to find out!

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Vaccine Development and Clinical Trials

Why does it take so long to develop vaccines?

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Attacking Cancer

Written by Shreyan Mitra

Cancer immunotherapy-is it the silver bullet to defeat cancer?

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Understanding Parkinson’s through the Lens of Neuroscience

Written by Shreyan Mitra

On Aug 9, 2020, we held a class to learn about the symptoms, causes and potential treatments for Parkinson’s disease.

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Mushroom Cultivation

Thanks to Marios Levi, Travis Askins, and Max Kennegott for leading a fantastic course on mushroom cultivation! We learned the basics of mushrooms, and talked about spores, mycelium, fruiting bodies, and reproduction. We learned how to inoculate mushrooms on simple DIY media like coffee grounds.

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Fighting the Flu Panel Discussion

Written by Erin McClure-Carroll

11/16/18

On November 9, 2018, BUGSS hosted an influenza panel discussion featuring scientists and clinicians from the Maryland Department of Health and Johns Hopkins University.

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Diversifying Genomes Seminar

Written by Rachel Creager

03/09/2019

On Friday, March 1, Rachel Sherman, a Ph.D. student at the Johns Hopkins University Center for Computational Biology, presented her work titled Diversifying Genomics: Identifying large variations in genomes of African ancestry individuals. Rachel discussed the history of the Human Genome Project and the race to produce the first full sequence of a human’s DNA. Because two organizations were racing to get publish the full genome before their competition, ~70% of the reference genome produced by the Human Genome Project is comprised of one individual.

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