Improved understanding of early spinal cord development paves the way for new treatments

Researchers at the University of Wisconsin–Madison are developing the means to turn stem cells into a wide range of specific types of spinal cord neurons and cells in the hindbrain — the critical nexus between the spinal cord and the brain — paving the way for improved prevention and treatment of spinal cord disease.

New interactive mural invites exploration and engagement with science

A multilayered mural painted in bold colors now hangs in the atrium of the Discovery Building, depicting the many facets of STEM research and inspiring new generations to engage in science. Painted QR codes make the mural interactive, drawing the viewer into the stories of renowned and lesser known Wisconsin scientists whose contributions have shaped society.New interactive mural invites exploration and engagement with science

Tiny Earth to develop AJEDI-focused open-access Scientific Teaching Course for college instructors

Tiny Earth will collaborate with Codon Learning and the National Institute on Scientific Teaching (NIST) to develop, evaluate, and disseminate a Scientific Teaching Course (STC) that integrates AJEDI (antiracist, just, equitable, diverse, inclusive) principles. The Course is designed as four modules and will be available via Codon Learning’s interactive digital platform beginning summer 2023. Modules will also be incorporated into Tiny Earth Partner Instructor (TEPI) training in summer 2023 and 2024.

WID Announces WID100 Research Advancement and Student Conference Travel Grant Recipients

WID Announces WID100 Research Advancement and Student Conference Travel Grant Recipients. The Research Advancement Grant for $5,000 was awarded to the John Yin Lab for their innovative research. The WID100 Student Conference Travel Grant is funding $1000 each to four outstanding graduate students to travel to scientific meetings for the academic year 2022-23.

Achieving STEM diversity: Fix the classrooms

A perspective piece published on June 2 in Science from the Wisconsin Institute for Discovery (WID) suggests that outdated classroom teaching methods discourage members of historically excluded communities (HECs) from graduating with a degree in science. Lead author, Jo Handelsman states “Outdated classroom teaching models are discriminatory, ultimately, we need to stop trying to fix the students and instead focus on our classrooms.”

Meet the new Writer-in-Residence: Kayla Cohen

What do mystery, mayhem, and the Wisconsin Institute for Discovery have in common? The Writer-in-Residence Program, recently welcomed Kayla Cohen as a part of the Illuminating Discovery Hub at the Wisconsin Institute of Discovery. The residency is an opportunity for an up-and-coming writer to work among scientists while crafting a manuscript with scientific themes.

Label-free Imaging, Plus Data Science, Means Better Quality Control for Biomanufacturing Stem Cells

Krishanu Saha and Melissa Skala have devised an innovative method for reprogramming cells that leverages micropatterning, label-free imaging and machine learning to enable real-time, noninvasive monitoring of reprogramming. This method can be used to develop cutting-edge personalized therapies and disease models.

Finding Associations Between Colors and Concepts

While looking at a graph about fruit, it may seem intuitive to associate a bar of blue to blueberries and yellow to bananas, but are there connections between color and abstract concepts such as driving, comfort, efficiency, or reliability?   Understanding how people absorb meaning from visual features, and predicting the meaning they attribute to color in any context is filled with possibility.

New Science to Script podcast featuring the Footprint Coalition added to SoundCloud

Michael Graf, WID’s Science to Script writer in residence (2021-2022)  interviews Rachel Kropa and David Lang from the Footprint Coalition. The Footprint Coalition invests in high-growth, sustainability-focused companies. They make charitable grants to non-profits that advance the adoption of environmental technology.

Claudia Solís-Lemus receives NSF CAREER Award

Claudia Solís-Lemus’ has been awarded a coveted five-year research grant from the National Science Foundation’s Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) Award. Solís-Lemus’ NSF grant will support her research, which combines statistical theory and biology to help understand  how the biodiversity that we see on Earth evolved from single-cell organisms.