University UpdatesWinter 2014

Winter 2014: Anthropology, Athletic Training, Biology, CAC, CELL, Chemistry,

Anthropology: Helping to ease the heartbreak

Forensic anthropologist and assistant professor of biology Krista Latham ’03 discussed her volunteer work near the U.S.–Mexico border at this year’s Provost Lecture held on October 1 at UIndy. “Beyond Borders: Forensic Science and the Journey Home” described the work of Latham and four graduate students who traveled to southern Texas earlier this year to exhume and begin the process of identifying the remains of undocumented migrants from Latin America and Asia. Migrant deaths in rural areas—often involving women and children who succumb to thirst and exposure after being smuggled across the border—are an increasing problem for local authorities and a source of heartbreak and uncertainty for loved ones in their home countries.

Latham also produced three publications with UIndy students. Latham and graduate student Megan Madonna contributed the chapter “DNA Survivability in Skeletal Remains” to the book Manual of Forensic Taphonomy published in October by CRC Press. Latham, graduate student Elizabeth DeVisser, and Marisol Intriago Leiva (Servicio Medico Legal; Santiago, Chile) contributed the chapter “The Contribution of Forensic Anthropology to National Identity in Chile: A Case Study from the Patio 29 Mass Grave” to the book Bioarchaeological and Forensic Perspectives on Violence published in March by Cambridge University Press. Latham, graduate student Sarah Kiley ’07, Amy Mundorff (University of Tennessee; Knoxville, Tenn.), Wolfgang Haak (The University of Adelaide; Adelaide, Australia) and Thomas Gilson (Cuyahoga County Medical Examiner, Cleveland, Ohio) published “Individualizing Unidentified Skeletal Remains: A Differential Diagnosis Combining Pathological Changes and Biomolecular Testing” in the November/December issue of the Journal of Forensic Identification.

Christopher Moore ’04 published an article with Richard Jefferies of the University of Kentucky in the edited volume Life among the Tides. The book is a special publication of the American Museum of Natural History. He also was awarded a Faculty Achievement Award at the August Faculty-Staff Institute at UIndy for his service, scholarship, and teaching.

Athletic Training: Faculty, students team up for research

Christine Lauber presented “Evidence-Based Ultrasound for Chronic Musculoskeletal Conditions” at the Indiana Athletic Trainers’ Association Fall Business Meeting and Clinical Symposia in Indianapolis. Lauber also co-authored several posters with undergraduate students at the same conference: “Is Eccentric Exercise More Effective Than Ultrasound When Treating Pain Associated with Lower Extremity Tendonitis? A Critically Appraised Topic” with Damon Martin; “Do Joint Mobilizations Improve Range of Motion In Patients With Ankle Injury? A Critically Appraised Topic” with Nicholas Voelker; and “Are Manual Soft-Tissue Mobilization and Augmented Soft-Tissue Mobilization Effective in Treating Soft-tissue Dysfunction? A Critically Appraised Topic” with Matthew Harrison.

In September Scott Lawrance ’03 ’10 was a featured speaker at the New Hampshire Musculoskeletal Institute Fall Symposium for athletic trainers, physical therapists, and other musculoskeletal professionals. He presented “Treating Impaired Hip Mobility” and “An Eclectic Treatment Algorithm for Management of SI Joint Dysfunction.”

Biology: Getting a green light from grants

In late 2012, Mary K. Ritke and her students Kristen Coleman ’13, Emily Uhlenhake ’13, and Helen Dainton ’13 received research grants from the Indiana Academy of Sciences. The grant titles were: “Analysis of Promoter Region of Topoisomerase II DNA in Etoposide-Resistant K562 (K/VP.5) Leukemia Cells (MKR, EU and KC)” and “Neural Espionage: A Study of Glial Cells Grown in Two and Three Dimensional Culture Media (MKR and HD).” Both projects were later presented at the annual meeting of the Indiana Academy of Science on March 20 in Indianapolis.

Ritke will be presenting research conducted by her and former students Allison Hart ’10 and Dainton at the annual meeting of the American Society for Cell Biology, December 15–19, in New Orleans, La. Their peer-reviewed abstract is titled “An Improved Egg White Matrix for Three Dimensional Culturing of MEF Mouse Embryo Fibroblasts and D1 TNC1 Rat Glial Cells.”

Center for Aging & Community: Caring for seniors abroad

CAC Executive Director Ellen Miller spoke at the Leading Aging Indiana Fall Conference on the topic of “Addressing Healthcare Acquired Infections Using a QAPI Approach.” She also spoke at the first Senior Health International Forum: Service Learning for Seniors’ Health Care in Shanghai, China. The October forum was sponsored by Sanda University, Huadong Hospital, the Shanghai Nursing Association, and Project HOPE. Miller’s remarks were focused on lessons from the University of Indianapolis Center for Aging & Community that could be useful to further efforts at Sanda University. Miller was also invited to serve as a member of the board of directors of OASIS Indianapolis.

In October 2013 CAC welcomed Jeff Gilbert, manager of the Denton, Texas, Senior Center and Pat Gilbert, network and civic engagement director for The OASIS Institute, as speakers at the Center’s semiannual continuing education series for aging-services professionals. Approximately 50 professionals attended “Helping Professionals Help Older Adults Embrace a New Purpose: Recreation and Volunteerism” in UIndy Hall. The workshop was funded with the generous support of an anonymous donor in honor of long-time aging advocate Nelle Worthington.

CAC’s work with WFYI Television and the National Community Reinvestment Coalition on a new documentary called “Fleeced: Speaking Out Against Senior Financial Abuse” was highlighted at a reception and screening for the film that took place on the UIndy campus in November. Invited guests included Indiana Governor Mike Pence, Indiana Assistant Deputy Attorney General Abbie Kuzma, and Director of Indiana Division of Aging Faith Laird.

CAC Academic Program Director Tamara Wolske ’05 was the keynote speaker for the Marion County Health Department’s Healthy Older People Program conference in September. Wolske spoke on the topic of global aging.

Center of Excellence in Leadership of Learning: On a mission to help

UIndy staff member Wendi Middleton ’05 ’07 was honored recently for her off-duty work supporting incarcerated women and their children. Middleton was one of three recipients of this year’s “Angel of Grace” awards from the Sisters of St. Benedict of Our Lady of Grace Monastery in Beech Grove, Ind. She is the founder and executive director of Angel’s Wings Inc., a nonprofit volunteer organization that describes its mission as “promoting family preservation by providing alternative residential placement for children of offenders, fostering mentor relationships with pregnant offenders, and assisting female ex-offenders in the successful reintegration into the community.” Since 2005, Ted Polk and his company PFS have donated most of the food for the organization’s thrice-annual baby showers at the Indiana Women’s Prison. Kevin Whiteacre of the Department of Social Sciences serves on the group’s Advisory Board, has recommended students for internships, and also oversaw a study of the women’s prison’s Wee Ones Nursery, which receives support from Angel’s Wings.

Chemistry: Chemistry ties schools together

The Chemistry Department welcomed Levi Mielke to the department in August. Mielke’s research interests include analytical and atmospheric chemistry, and he will teach General Chemistry, Analytical Chemistry, Environmental Chemistry, and Advanced Laboratory Techniques. Mielke has opened the door to a new collaboration with the IU-Bloomington’s School for Public and Environmental Affairs in atmospheric chemistry and data from this ongoing project has already been analyzed and presented. He was also first author on a publication in the Journal of Geophysical Research: Atmospheres from research with collaborators at the University of Calgary concerning the formation of ozone pollution in Los Angeles.

Brad Neal presented “Self-Assembly of Azulenic Monolayer Films on Metallic Gold Surfaces” at the 2013 meeting of the American Chemical Society in New Orleans.

In September, the Chemistry faculty actively participated in the American Chemical Society national meeting in several ways. They attended meeting symposia and presented their research in chemistry education with two talks: “Ongoing Development of a Skills Exercise for Organic Literature Reading and Analysis” (Kathy Stickney and Joe Burnell ’83) and “Improving the Laboratory Skills Base of General Chemistry Students while Increasing the Rigor of the Lab Course” (David Styers-Barnett and Neal). At least six alumni also presented their research.

The Chemistry Department received a generous donation of equipment from Dow AgroSciences to support the department and the Woodrow Wilson Indiana Teaching Fellows Program. The equipment included a tandem mass spectrometer, a gas chromatograph, and two high-pressure liquid chromatographs, and will be used for teaching and research purposes.

Chemistry students also completed undergraduate summer research experiences in their preparation for professional careers. Of special note were research projects by Chris Otolski (research completed at University of Kansas) and Danielle Ballard (University of Alabama).

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