NIMBioS News
 Bi-Monthly News from the National Institute for Mathematical and Biological Synthesis
September-October 2014, Vol 6 Issue 5

NIMBioS Support Requests, March 1:
Report Your Results
NIMBioS Names New Director
Colleen Jonsson, an expert in infectious disease dynamics and molecular virology, has been named the new NIMBioS Director to begin January 2015.
Jonsson will succeed Louis J. Gross, who is continuing on as a professor of mathematics and ecology and evolutionary biology at the University of Tennessee (UT) in Knoxville, a position he has held concurrently with the NIMBioS directorship since 2008.
     Jonsson has previously been active at NIMBioS, as both an Advisory Board member and co-organizer of the NIMBioS Investigative Workshop on Modeling Wildlife and Virus Zoonoses.
     She comes to NIMBioS from the University of Louisville (UofL) in Louisville, Kentucky, where she has directed the Center for Predictive Medicine for Biodefense and Emerging Infectious Diseases since 2008. 
     Jonsson, whose research spans 30 years, is also a professor of microbiology in UofL's Department of Microbiogy and Immunology. While at NIMBioS, she will also hold the position of professor of microbiology at UT. Her research areas include the ecology of hantaviruses in rodents and other viral zoonoses in wildlife populations. Read more
Featured Science: Bird Behavior

Science has learned a great deal about complex social behavior by studying nonhuman mammals and primates, but parrots might have something to teach too.

     With their unusually large brains relative to their body size and advanced cognition, parrots live in a complex social environment---not merely in a large population of cooperating creatures, such as bees or ants, but in a dynamic setting of alliances and competitors. The same is true of the most intelligent mammals: dolphins, whales, primates, and social carnivores, like hyenas and lions.

     A new study -- the first to quantify the social lives of parrots using social network analysis -- provides intriguing new insights into parrot sociality revealing a sophisticated social structure with layers of relationships and complex interactions.

      In the study, researchers observed both wild monk parakeets in Argentina and captive ones in Florida to test several common but largely untested assumptions about parrot sociality. Read more.
Welcome Our Newest NIMBioS Postdocs
Six new postdoctoral fellows arrived at NIMBioS over the summer months. (From left) Angela Peace studies stoichiometric food web models; Sandy Kawano studies measurements of phenotypic selection; Elizabeth Hobson researches the evolution of social complexity; Caroline Farrior investigates wind storm and drought effects on forests; Ioannis Sgouralis researches models of renal autoregulation; and Jake Ferguson studies the role of seasonality on ecological populations. For project details, click here. If you are interested in postdoctoral fellowships at NIMBioS, click here.
Education Spotlight: Undergraduate Research Conference
conference The deadline to register is fast approaching for the sixth annual Undergraduate Research Conference at the Interface of Mathematics and Biology to be held Nov. 1-2, 2014, at the University of Tennessee Conference Center in Knoxville. Student talks and posters are featured as well as a panel discussion on career opportunities. While the deadline for travel support is past, a small amount of registration-only support is still available, so contact us if you are specifically interested in presenting at the conference. Registration deadline: October 24Click here for more information and the online application.
Upcoming Research and Training Opportunities at NIMBioS
Applications are now being accepted for the NIMBioS Investigative Workshop: Information and Entropy to be held April 8-10, 2015, at NIMBioS.Information theory and entropy methods are becoming powerful tools in biology, from the level of individual cells, to whole ecosystems, to experimental design, model-building and biodiversity measurement. This workshop aims to synthesize ways of applying these concepts in biological systems. Application deadline: November 12, 2014. For more information, click here. 
Applications are now being accepted for the Graduate Workshop on Current Trends in Statistical Ecology, to be held April 15-17, 2015, at NIMBioS. For graduate students in ecology-related fields or statistics with an interest in ecological applications, this workshop will give participants the opportunity to learn about the latest trends in statistical ecology. There will be opportunities to build skills in new statistical tools useful for ecology and to work on applying tools to participants' research questions. Application deadline: December 1, 2014. For more information, click here.
December 11 is the next deadline for submitting requests for postdoctoral support. All areas of research at the interface of biology and mathematics will be considered. We are especially interested in activities expanding beyond the research supported to date, including research in areas of molecular biology, cell biology, network biology, immunology and systems biology. If you miss the December 11 deadline, your next chance to request postdoctoral support from NIMBioS is September 1, 2015. To apply, click here. Needs some tips on a successful application? Click here.
Applications are now being accepted for the NIMBioS Investigative Workshop: Malaria-Leishmania Co-infection, to be held May 26-28, 2015, at NIMBioS. The focus of this workshop is to identify challenges for the control of malaria-leishmaniasis co-infections in South Asian and the African continent. The workshop will also model the complexity involved in co-infection propogation in resource limited regions. Experts will present field and quantitative challenges with persistence of co-infection cases. Application deadline: February 1, 2015. For more information, click here.
March 1 is the next deadline for submitting requests for new scientific and educational activities beginning in fall/winter 2015 at NIMBioS, including Working Groups, Investigative Workshops and Sabbatical Fellowships. All areas at the interface of mathematics and biology are acceptable, but Working Groups and Investigative Workshops in areas of molecular biology, cell biology, network biology, and systems biology are particularly encouraged. Click here for details.

The National Institute for Mathematical and Biological Synthesis (NIMBioS) brings together researchers from around the world to collaborate across disciplinary boundaries to investigate solutions to basic and applied problems in the life sciences. NIMBioS is funded by the National Science Foundation in collaboration with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and the U.S. Department of Agriculture, with additional support from The University of Tennessee, Knoxville.


NIMBioS is located at the Univ. of Tennessee, Knoxville
1122 Volunteer Blvd, Suite 106, Knoxville, TN 37996-3410
Phone: +1 865 974 9334
Fax: +1 865 974 9300
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