MIP Newsletter

Volume 7, Issue 6, June 2010

High Five

Congratulations to the following faculty on their upcoming promotion and/or tenure actions which become effective July:

Paul Avery

Paul Avery
Promotion to Associate Professor with Tenure

Brian Foy

Brian Foy
Promotion to Associate Professor with Tenure

Alan Schenkel

Alan Schenkel
Promotion to Associate Professor with Tenure

Ric Slayden

Richard Slayden

Erica Suchman

Erica Suchman
Promotion to Professor

Congratulations to the following Micro Majors who made the Dean's List:

Zienab AlHashim
Pouneh Alizadeh
Daniel April
Diane Bergstedt
Erin Breland
Antonia Calomfirescu
Bianca Christensen
Elizabeth Creissen
Kyle Dascher
Amanda Dudek
Chloe Elder
Ryan Goffredi
Courtney Hillard
Lauren Kinner
Danielle Lyons
Justine Masselli
Ian Mcmillan
Katherine Mladinich
Christina Needham
Christine O'Donnell
Linda Smith
Rebecca Timmons
Karen Trott
Megan Vogt
Hallee White

Justin Lee

Congratulations to Justin Lee of the VandeWoude Lab for receving 1st place in the Young Investigator Award at the International Feline Retrovirus Research Symposium that was held May 23-26 in Charleston, SC. Justin received the award, which includes $500, for his presentation entitled, "Use of host and pathogen molecular markers to determine population substructure among bobcats (Lynx rufus) in a fragmented landscape in southern California "

Congrats Residents

Congratulations to the following students who have completed their Veterinary Residency and are continuing on for completion of their PhD degree:

Laurie BaetenLaurie Baeten
Karen Fox
Anatomic Pathology
Karen Fox
Chuck HalseyChuck Halsey
Anatomic Pathology
Brett Webb
Anatomic Pathology
Brett Webb

Congratulations to the following students who have completed their Veterinary Residency and PhD degree:

Gopi Palanisamy
Anatomic Pathology
Gopi Palanisamy

Congratulations to the following students who have completed their Veterinary Residency and their MS degree:

Tina WeinerTina Weiner
Comparative Medicine
Michael Wiseman
Clinical Pathology
Michael Wiseman

Michael Wiseman is headed to ANTECH West, Tina is going to work at Taconic in Albany NY, and Gopi is headed to Mt. Sinai for a postdoc.

A reception to recognize these achievments will be held on Monday, June 21, 3-5pm in the Glover Gallery of the Pathology Building

S Africa Flag International Experience
Justine Masselli

Congratulations to recent Microbiology graduate Justine Masselli, B.S. for being awarded a 9-week research internship (Sept-Nov 2010) at the Infectious Disease Pediatric Unit of Tygerberg Hospital in Cape Town, South Africa. Justine will be assisting researchers in assessing the neurological and motor development of HIV-positive infants/children. Justine will be set-up in a furnished apartment near the beach with her own rental car (which will come in handy assuming that she remembers to drive on the left side of the road). She is very excited for the opportunity and the international research experience. Good Luck Justine!

Gerald Callahan Congratulations to Gerald Callahan for being nominated for the "Honors Professor of the Year Award" for the fourth time!

Callahan Book a finalist

Dr. Gerald Callahan's most current book, Between XX and XY: Intersexuality and the Myth of Two Sexes is a finalist for the Colorado Book Award in general nonfiction. Winners will be announced June 22nd in Aspen.

In the News...

Davis Seelig, Gary Mason, Glen Telling and Ed Hoover’s work on generating a new mouse animal model for chronic wasting disease was highlighted in the May 26th edition of Science Daily.

pub highlight

Prion Strain Mutation Determined by Prion Protein Conformational Compatibility and Primary Structure

R. Angers, H.-E. Kang, D. Napier, S. Browning, T. Seward, Candace Mathiason, A. Balachandran, D. McKenzie, J. Castilla, C. Soto, J. Jewell, C. Graham, Ed Hoover and Glenn Telling

Science 328: 1154 (May 28 2010)

     Ask a person to define the meaning of the word ‘strain’ and they’ll likely respond with things like “anxiety”, “to struggle” or perhaps “a nagging pain somewhere”.  Ask any of MIP’s hard working researchers who are trying to define what exactly is a ‘strain’ of the prion that causes Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) in No CO elk and deer, and they’ll likely respond with the same answers – until now that is.  In a tour de force paper that appeared in the hot shot journal Science this month, Ed and Candace – as part of a group led by Glenn Telling – have finally defined two CWD strains - at least from a clinical perspective.

     The group obtained prion samples from a boatload of Rocky Mtn. elk and deer (aka cervids) with CWD and observed a number of parameters in the disease they cause in Glenn Telling’s transgenic mouse strain that expresses the cervid PrP gene rather than the normal mouse version.  PrP, by the way, is the normal cellular protein that generates prions when it folds incorrectly.  For each of these infections, the authors characterized the time to disease and the distribution/severity of the associated neuropathology.  What they found was clear evidence for two strains of CWD prions.  The first (CWD-1) produced disease with a relatively short incubation time and gave bilateral symmetrical lesions in the hippocampus (which by they way, is part of your brain, not a new CSU satellite facility at the Denver Zoo).  The other prion strain (CWD-2) took a long time to cause disease that manifested itself with asymmetric brain lesions.  The strain differences were very clear in samples from the diseased elk brains but in CWD deer brain, however, the strains were usually co-mingled.  So far, the story is pretty straight forward – right?  Now comes the two funky parts.  First, upon serial passage in the Telling PrPcervid mouse, the strains readily changed and became undistinguishable.  This suggests a very low energy barrier separating one CWD prion strain from changing into another.  In particular, if the PrP protein in the infected animal has a ‘Q’ at position 226 (Q by the way stands for glutamine, not Quackenbush) the strains appear to be very readily interchangeable.  Thus the CWD prion appears to be very adaptable.  Second, the authors could not biochemically distinguish the CWD-1 and CWD-2 prions.  The two prion strains had identical electrophoretic patterns, monoclonal antibody reactivity, glycoforms and unfolding kinetics in the presence of guanidinium.  Wazzup with that?

      What’s this all mean and what three things made us choose (yet another) paper from the Hoover-ites to highlight?  Well first and foremost this work makes the groundbreaking discovery that two main strains are likely responsible for all of the CWD in our backyard.  Second (and perhaps scary-most), the CWD strains are more adaptable to new environments then would have been previously predicted.  How they do this adaptation in the apparent absence of nucleic acid, of course, is a complete black box.  Thus while studies using transgenic mice that contain human proteins have implied that CWD prions do not cause significant disease in humans, the full zoonotic potential of CWD prions needs to be established.  Finally, we chose this paper because we wanted to see how many of you would notice the individual in the author line who shares a last name with an MIPnews editor…….

     If you want to learn more about this paper, be sure to check out the Science News & Views article by John Collinge that accompanied the article (Science 328:  1111-1112)

MIP Publications Late May 2010 - Early June 2010

Zhang J, Chatterjee D, Brennan PJ, Spencer JS, Liav A.  A modified synthesis and serological evaluation of neoglycoproteins containing the natural disaccharide of PGL-I from Mycobacterium leprae.
Bioorg Med Chem Lett. 2010 Jun 1;20(11):3250-3.

Wise de Valdez MR, Suchman EL, Carlson JO, Black WC.  A large scale laboratory cage trial of Aedes densonucleosis virus (AeDNV).  J Med Entomol. 2010 May;47(3):392-9.

Brackney DE, Isoe J, W C B 4th, Zamora J, Foy BD, Miesfeld RL, Olson KE.  Expression profiling and comparative analyses of seven midgut serine proteases from the yellow fever mosquito, Aedes aegypti.  J Insect Physiol. 2010 Jul;56(7):736-44.

Angers RC, Kang HE, Napier D, Browning S, Seward T, Mathiason C, Balachandran A, McKenzie D, Castilla J, Soto C, Jewell J, Graham C, Hoover EA, Telling GC.  Prion strain mutation determined by prion protein conformational compatibility and primary structure.  Science. 2010 May 28;328(5982):1154-8.

Seelig DM, Mason GL, Telling GC, Hoover EA.  Pathogenesis of chronic wasting disease in cervidized transgenic mice.  Am J Pathol. 2010 Jun;176(6):2785-97.

Denkers ND, Seelig DM, Telling GC, Hoover EA.  Aerosol and nasal transmission of chronic wasting disease in cervidized mice.  J Gen Virol. 2010 Jun;91(Pt 6):1651-8.

Calvo E, Sanchez-Vargas I, Kotsyfakis M, Favreau AJ, Barbian KD, Pham VM, Olson KE, Ribeiro JM.  The salivary gland transcriptome of the eastern tree hole mosquito, Ochlerotatus triseriatus.  J Med Entomol. 2010 May;47(3):376-86.

Geiss BJ, Stahla H, Hannah AM, Gari HH, Keenan SM.  Focus on flaviviruses: current and future drug targets.  Future Med Chem. 2009 May 1;1(2):327

Spraker TR, O'Rourke KI, Gidlewski T, Powers JG, Greenlee JJ, Wild MA.  Detection of the abnormal isoform of the prion protein associated with chronic wasting disease in the optic pathways of the brain and retina of Rocky Mountain elk (Cervus elaphus nelsoni).  Vet Pathol. 2010 May;47(3):536-46.

Lee JE, Wilusz J.  Translational symphony in (hnRNP) C major for APP.  Nat Struct Mol Biol. 2010 Jun;17(6):675-6


Charles Calisher retires

On June 30th, Dr. Charlie Calisher will be retiring after 17 years of service at CSU. Charlie received his BS from the Philadelphia College of Pharmacy & Science, an MS in Gnotobiotics from a school with a slightly better football team (Notre Dame) and a PhD in Microbiology from Georgetown. Before joining the MIP faculty, he spent the first ~27 years of his career at the CDC where he earned his reputation as a world-class arbovirologist. Throughout his impressive career, Charlie published nearly 400 peer-reviewed articles, book chapters, and other scholarly works. His enormous impact on the field is illustrated by the 5,034 citations his work has received to date. Although its hard to pick a key paper or two from such a large body of work, a pair that come to mind are his studies on the rapid detection of Dengue virus from clinical samples using RT-PCR (J. Clin Micro., 1992; [405 citations to date]) and the antigenic relatedness between flaviviruses as determined by cross-neutalization tests (J. Gen Virol., 1989; [312 citations to date]).

Charlie has been a member of 17 different scientific societies, served on 11 editorial boards and participated in well over 30 scientific panels (including consultation service to various senators).  He has received numerous awards throughout his career, including the Richard Moreland Taylor Award, the Joel Dalrymple Award and a Life membership in the International Committee for Taxonomy of Viruses. Interestingly, Charlie has also had a flea named after him – Catallagia calisheri.  Now there’s a first I bet for an MIP faculty member!

When he wasn’t out playing arbovirologist, Charlie found the time to get involved in a variety of community affairs.  These included writing a science column for the Coloradoan, serving as a baseball umpire, and proofreading the Baseball rule book for the National Federation of State High School Sports Association.  His monthly articles for the Croatian Journal of Medicine (e.g. Public Health or Pubic Health – is there a difference?) were always a hoot to read.

To round out this article, we asked Charlie to provide some personal insights on his time as an arbovirologist:

Dr. Calisher's Top Ten List of his most interesting experiences as a scientist:

  1. Discovery that the urinary pH of deer mice decreases (to a level that will inactivate Sin Nombre hantavirus) when the mice feed on insects. NIH did not fund our proposal.
  2. Discovery that calcium added to the medium fed cells derived from adenovirus type 12 tumors (and not tumors caused by other viruses) cause those cells to "ball up" and detach from the flask.
  3. Annual travel to what was Yugoslavia, when I was the U.S. representative to that country's virology community.
  4. Field work on hantaviruses in Colorado.
  5. The overwhelmingly positive response to our paper on bats and their viruses.
  6. Results of studies of IgM antibody responses of humans and horses infected with yellow fever, West Nile, eastern and western equine encephalitis, Pogosta disease, and many other viruses.
  7. The realization that I was (and am) only one of about three people in the world who understands the difference between a virus and a virus species, simple as that is.
  8. Identifying Australian viruses -- in Australia.
  9. Discovering, as an editor/reviewer, how poorly most people write.
  10. Discovery of transplacental (vertical) transmission of rabies virus in bats.

Dr. Calisher's ‘Turn ons & Turn Offs’

Turn ons: The marvelous people at CSU, meeting and collaborating with scientists such as those at CSU (particularly, but not exclusively, Barry Beaty, Ralph Smith and Bill Black) and CDC, Thomas Weller, Wallace Rowe, Janet Hartley, Bob Huebner, Tom Monath, Telford Work, Bob Shope, CJ Peters, Marc Van Regenmortel, Max Theiler, Wilbur Downs, Carleton Gajdusek, Peter Doherty, Marshall Nirenberg, and many, many others, the Rocky Mountain Virology Club meetings, and virus ecology and epidemiology

Turn offs: The few (but significant) jackasses here and there, the NIH grant system, forms to fill out, rules to follow, people who can't tell the difference between a virus species and a virus, lab meetings (everywhere), working in high containment facilities, and planting 100 aspen trees in rocky ground, only to find the next morning that deer ate them all.

Congratulations Charlie on your CSU retirement and kudos on a terrific scientific career (which we’re all betting isn’t over just yet…..)

CRC Grant Awards

Congratulations to the following MIP researchers who were awarded grants by the CVMBS College Research Council for 2010/2011:

  • Randall Basaraba, "Mechanisms of in vitro drug tolerance in Cornyebacterium pseudotuberculosis infected sheep"
  • Brian Foy, "The effect of ivermectin on malaria transmission"
  • Mercedes Gonzalez-Juarrero, "Goat model of Mycobacterium bovis Infection"
  • Sandra Quackenbush, "Paranasal Sinus Tumors of Bighorn Sheep: Experimental Transmission and Investigation of a Retroviral Etiology"
  • Joel Rovnak, "Deep Sequencing of Bovine Herpesvirus"
  • Carol Wilusz, "The Role of CUGBPI in Regulating Expression of Secretory Pathway Genes"
  • Mark Zabel, "Determining Binding Kinetics of CD21/35 with PRPRES"


We are pleased to announce the winners of this year's MIP faculty committee elections:

  • Advisory Committee
    Brian Foy
  • Promotion and Tenure Committee
    Erica Suchman
    Barb Powers
    Julie Inamine
    Bob Ellis
  • Graduate Education Committee
    RoxAnn Karkhoff-Schweizer
  • Undergraduate Education Committee
    Erica Suchman

Lab Lines

Check out the 2010 Spring/Summer edition of the Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory's Lab Lines

Local Fall Meetings Scheduled:

Mark your calendars
for these exciting upcoming local meetings this Fall:

Rocky Mtn Virology Club

Rocky Mtn Virology Club
Sept 24-26
Pingree Park, CO

Rocky Mtn ASM

Oct 22-23
University of Wyoming, Laramie

Graduate Summer Picnic

The Graduate Student Council (GSC), with support from the CSU Graduate School, is hosting it's first annual summer Picnic for all CSU Graduate Students!

When: Weds, June 30, 5:30-8:00pm
Where: Rolland Moore Park, Shelter #2

This intra-departmental gathering, along with future events put on by the GSC, will help to strengthen and enrich our grad student community.

Contact Katherine Zaunbrecher, Graduate Student President, if you have any questions or would like to get involved.

Shell gamePayroll Shenanigans for Hourly Employees

Timesheets submitted for the May 22-June 4 pay period will not be paid on June 18th. Due to CSU fiscal year end policy, you’ll have to wait until Thursday July 1, 2010 for your check. Please plan accordingly.

Farewell Sharon

AIDL Admin Assistant/Accounting Tech/Clean-up Officer, Sharon Chapman, has accepted a position with CSU Accounts Payable Department. Her last day with MIP will be Friday, June 18. Sharon's friendly smile, cheerful attitude, and willingness to help anyone with anything, will be missed. We wish her the best in her new endeavor.

Wedding Congrats!

Congratulations to Aaron McGrew and Ashley Linton on their recent marriage, which took place on June 6, 2010. We wish them a long and happy life together!



MIP Bits

Quote of the Month

"As an adolescent I aspired to lasting fame, I craved factual certainty, and I thirsted for a meaningful vision of human life - so I became a scientist. This is like becoming an archbishop so you can meet girls."
~Matt Cartmill, Ph.D.

Ed Hoover

Dr. Hoover puts the finishing touches on another animal facility clean-up project

    Alternative Captions:
  1. "Chronic Wasting is interesting, but the chronic waste around here is driving me nuts!"
  2. Ed rehearsing a scene from Bas Bleu’s new Shakespearian Parody ‘Out Damned Scat’
  3. Ed demonstrates Patrick Kane’s shot that beat the Flyers to win the Stanley Cup for his hometown Blackhawks
  4. Right about now wouldn’t be a good time to ask Ed what the ‘BS’ in BSL-3 facility stands for
  5. Please submit your photos to the MIPnews so we can give our good-natured dept. head a reprieve from the lampoons next month!

Questions for MIPuzzle #55
MIPuzzle #55 Answers MIPuzzle 55


A Galapagos land iguana (Conolophus subcristatus). Picture taken by Charles Calisher on his recent trip to Ecuador to help setup lab and field studies of arboviruses and hantaviruses.

New Grant Awards

Anne Avery, "Arginine and Risk Factors for Thrombosis in Dogs with IMHA", Morris Animal Foundation

Nicholas Haley, "CWD: A Model of Prion Transmission via Saliva and Urine", NIH-Nat. Ctr. for Research Resources

Diane Ordway-Rodriguez, "Induction of Regulatory T Cells by Highly Virulent Isolates of M. tuberculosis", NIH-NIAID

Vara Vissa, "ARRA: Supplement of Molecular Epidemiology of Leprosy", NIH-NIAID

NIH Happenings
  • New Proposed NIH Conflict of Interest Rules

    In early May, NIH put out a proposal that would significantly change the way that it handles financial conflict of interest reporting.  In a nutshell, PIs would have to disclose all equity interests in private companies of $5,000 or more, all PIs would have to take a specific training course in managing financial COIs (and refreshers every 2 years), and institutions would be in charge of reporting and dealing with these COIs.  Learn more about these new proposed regs at Responsibility of Applicants for Promoting Objectivity in Research Request for Comments and feel free to provide your comments to NIH regarding them between now and July 20th at May 21, 2010, Guide notice.

  • C2D2 wants you!

    If you’re interested in translational research, the newly formed Colorado Center for Drug Discovery may have expertise, reagents and grant dollars that you can tap into.  Check them out and register to become a member of the center at http://www.c2d2.org/

  • Upcoming NIAID training grant deadline - Sept 25th

    Just a reminder that the sole annual deadline for graduate and postdoctoral institutional training grant submissions to NIAID is ~100 days away.

  • New indirect (F&A) cost restrictions on genomic arrays

    Note that effective May 12, NIH will only support F&A costs for the first $75K of microarray reagents purchased in a given year.

JUNE 2010
Mon Tue Wed Thur Fri
  1 2 3 4
7 8 9 10 11
14 15 16 17 18
21 22 23 24 25
28 29 30
Fiscal Year End


JULY 2010
Mon Tue Wed Thur Fri
Resident Orientation
Univ Offices Closed
6 7 8
Biosafety & Biosecurity Training Course begins and runs thru the 15th
12 13 14 15 16
19 20 21 22 23
26 27 28 29 30

Do you have NEWS or PICTURES you would like to share?

Send In your ideas or newsworthy items. Contributions make the Newsletter better!

MIP Newsletter Volume 7, Issue 6, June 2010