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Lecture Series in the Sciences

Tufas on Mono; Lake photo courtesy of David Fulmer

*Please note that the following lectures qualify for Odyssey credit for Elmira College students.

Elmira College's third annual Lecture Series in the Sciences.

Dr. Wayne JonesFriday, September 26th, 6 p.m. at Kolker Lecture Hall, Elmira College: Dr. Wayne Jones, Binghamton University

Title “Capturing the Power of the Sun using Molecular Wires and Devices for Sensors, Photovoltaics, and Photocatalysis for Environmental Remediation”

The development of ever smaller electronic and photonic devices has recently focused on the preparation of molecular scale devices. There is a continuing need for new synthetic and processing strategies to prepare these nanomaterials. Dr. Wayne Jones and his lab at Binghamton University has been pursuing new approaches to the preparation of sensors and switches in the context of conjugated polymers and molecular wires. Using a combination of organic coupling chemistry and coordination chemistry, new polymers can be prepared which exhibit long range electron and energy transport behaviors. In some cases, these polymers act as fluorescent sensors, responding selectively to analytes in solution. Derivatives of these materials can also be prepared as nanofibers, nanowires, and interfacial materials for electronic devices. For example, they have explored their application as photovoltaics for solar energy conversion as well as new photocatalytic materials for removal of environmental toxins and warfare nerve agents. The synthesis, design, and molecular characterization of recent materials will be discussed.

Dr. Diana AgaWednesday, October 15th, 6 p.m. at Kolker Lecture Hall, Elmira College: Dr. Diana Aga, University at Buffalo

Title “Gender Benders and Free Drugs in the Environment: Potential Risks and Solutions”

Dr. Diana Aga’s presentation will focus on her current research activities on the occurrence of emerging contaminants, which include previously neglected pollutants (e.g. pharmaceuticals) and recently used industrial chemicals (e.g. brominated flame retardants) that end up in the environment. These compounds that are known to contaminate our environment can have adverse effects on public health, including disruption of the endocrine system, carcinogenic effects, and promotion of antibiotic resistance in pathogenic bacteria. Residues of pharmaceuticals are introduced into the environment via a number of pathways, primarily from discharges of wastewater treatment plants, or land application of animal manure. This presentation will also include the potential of advanced oxidation process, followed by biodegradation, in removing emerging contaminants in wastewater.

Dr. Vladimir SirotkinFriday, October 17th, 6 p.m. at Kolker Lecture Hall, Elmira College: Dr. Vladimir Sirotkin, Upstate Medical University

Title: “Endocytosis by the Numbers: Investigation of the Mechanisms of Endocytosis by Quantitative Live Cell Imaging”

Actin cytoskeleton dynamics are responsible for changes in cell shape. By counting the numbers of molecules in live cells, we investigate how cells control the actin filament assembly driving membrane deformation during endocytosis.

Kimberly Kellett '09Friday November 14th, 6 p.m. at Kolker Lecture Hall, Elmira College: Kimberly Kellett ’09, University of Georgia

Title "Well-seasoned demography: The importance of intra-annual variability for populations of the Neotropical milkweed, Asclepias curassavica"

After graduating from Elmira College Kimberly Kellett ’09 (Doctoral Candidate, University of Georgia) studied Swallows in Argentina and the endangered Florida Scrub-Jay at the Archbold Biological Station in Florida. In 2010 Kimmy was awarded a university fellowship at the University of Georgia and began working on a PhD in the Odum School Ecology. She has been exploring the role that seasonal and year-to-year variation in demographic rates (survival, growth, and reproduction) play in the population dynamics of a long-lived perennial milkweed in Monteverde, Costa Rica. Kimberly also examines how climate change may impact these populations in the future, and how temporal variation in environment may have shaped the reproductive schedule of this species.

The Elmira College Lecture Series in the Sciences is free and open to the public. For more information call Dr. Dan Kjar, Associate Professor of Biology, at 607-735-1826.