Matthew’s research focuses on finding better ways to map the distribution of mass in the universe. This is accomplished by measuring the amount by which light passing by a massive object is bent by its gravity, distorting the images of objects behind the mass. He has discovered that a new tool called the Fisher Information Matrix is much more effective than traditional methods for measuring this gravitational effect.
As an undergraduate researcher in Dr. Carrie Finno’s Veterinary Genetics Laboratory, Callie Wilcox collaborates on research related to genetic diseases in horses, particularly Equine Neuroaxonal Dystrophy/Equine Degenerative Myeloencephalopathy (eNAD/EDM). This disease makes it difficult for horses to walk normally. Her published research focuses on four proposed genetic causes for the disease and has ruled out specific locations in the genome that are not associated with greater risk.
Hana Minsky conducts research in the Zerbe Lab, where she studies terpenes: molecules that many plants make to help them survive environmental stressors, such as drought or disease. She mainly focuses on terpenes made by maize (corn), which is not only a common food staple, but is also important for biofuels and other natural products. Learning more about how plants protect themselves from damage helps scientists to engineer resilient plants that will be able to produce more food and handle the stress of climate change.
Yu Ching (Teresa) Tang conducts research in the UC Davis Department of Chemistry alongside Dr. Annaliese Franz. Her published work investigates new ways of synthesizing novel organic semiconductors: polymers that are used to create flexible circuit boards (like those we see in sci-fi movies), bioimaging probes, and solar panel coatings. For her latest project, she used a pink and purple dye called diketopyrrolopyrrole (DPP) and altered its chemical structure so that it would be more efficient as a semiconductor.
Jayashri Viswanathan is a third-year biochemistry and molecular biology major in Dr. David Olson’s lab, where she conducts research on the molecular and systemic basis of hallucinations caused by psychedelic compounds. She has also conducted research on the development of safer, more effective neurotherapeutic drugs, inspired by classic psychedelics such as LSD and psilocybin (psychedelic mushrooms).