Recent CALS Spotlights

  • How can Arizona ensure a safe, reliable water supply, now and in the future? The University of Arizona Water Resources Research Center will host a conference on April 8 – “Closing the Gap Between Water Supply and Demand” – to explore our state’s options for meeting future water needs.

    By 2060, water demand in Arizona may exceed renewable supplies by a margin that is estimated to grow to 1 million acre-feet. Now is the time for action. The WRRC conference will tackle this issue and others that affect every Arizona resident, including water supply sustainability, conservation, reuse and recycling, policy options and more.
    The conference, organized in partnership with the Arizona Department of Water Resources, will feature presentations and viewpoints from renowned water experts, including keynote speakers Michael Lacey (interim director, ADWR) and Kay Brothers (Colorado River Basin Study Next Steps Working Group). Everyone with an interest in Arizona’s water future is encouraged to attend and join the discussion.

  • Monarch butterflies are relatively small insects that participate in one of nature's most impressive migrations, but many scientists and other professionals are concerned about their long-term survival.

    The butterflies can travel from their wintering grounds in central Mexico to summer homes in the United States and Canada. However, their descendants eventually return to Mexico to begin the process again.

    Supporters say the insects' numbers have been dwindling significantly, and they worry about the butterflies' long-term survival.

    Because of this, many people are thankful and supportive of an agreement between Canada, U.S. and Mexico that is establishing a task force to try to help the insects.

  • The University of Arizona's Terry J. Lundgren Center for Retailing has announced its 2014 Global Retailing Conference lineup of presenters, which includes UA alumnus Lundgren, CEO of Macy's, and Bobbi Brown, founder of Bobbi Brown Cosmetics.

    With a theme of "Ignite the Customer Experience," the conference presentations will focus on how retailers engage customers in their brands and enhance the shopping experience through innovation, technology and techniques for meeting evolving consumer preferences.

    The conference will be held April 10-11 at Loews Ventana Canyon Resort, 7000 N. Resort Drive, in Tucson. The annual event serves as a forum and think tank for emerging ideas in a setting that fuses business and academia.

  • "It's going to change everything," says University of Arizona junior Philipp von Bieberstein.

    He's talking about his independent study research comparing growth of a medicinal plant in hydroponic versus aeroponic systems in greenhouses at the University of Arizona's Natural Products Center, part of the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences' School of Natural Resources and the Environment.

    Von Bieberstein's research focuses on the plant Withania somnifera, a member of the tomato family that contains a potential anti-tumor agent called withaferin A, which can be isolated through chemistry. The roots of the plant have been used medicinally for more than 3,000 years in India and adjoining countries. Historically, roots were used to treat cancer, stress and neurological disorders.

  • On December 7, 2013, the University of Arizona Superfund Research Program (UA SRP) participated in a multi-stakeholder community meeting in Dewey-Humboldt, AZ.

    Residents of the town live in close proximity to the Iron King Mine and Humboldt Smelter Superfund site and may be exposed to metal contamination in soil and water via Superfund site and natural sources.

    The purpose of the public meeting was to provide residents with information for understanding and reducing their exposures to arsenic and other metals associated with the Superfund site and to update the community on site-related research as well as the clean-up process by the US Environmental Protection Agency (US EPA).

  • The retail landscape of 2014 is more digital than ever before, and integrating store and online operations is a key focus for retailers as e-commerce capable solutions increasingly replace  traditional point-of-sale and mobile technologies.

    According to a new study conducted by the University of Arizona’s Norton School of Family and Consumer Sciences, the National Retail Federation and Demandware that polled more than 200 U.S. and European retail business technology executives, more than one-third (35.8%) of retailers surveyed are considering a single platform to manage interactions and transactions across all channels.

    The Norton School of Family and Consumer Sciences is part of the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences.

  • A study led by University of Arizona researcher Kelly Bright has found that carvacrol – the substance in oregano oil that gives the pizza herb its distinctive warm and aromatic smell and flavor – is effective against norovirus, causing the breakdown of the virus’ tough outer coat. The research is published in the Society for Applied Microbiology’s Journal of Applied Microbiology.

    Norovirus, also known as the winter vomiting disease, is the leading cause of vomiting and diarrhea around the world. It is particularly problematic in nursing homes, hospitals, cruise ships and schools, and is the most common cause of foodborne-disease outbreaks. Although the disease is unpleasant, most people recover fully within a few days. But for people with an existing serious medical problem, this highly infectious virus can be dangerous.

  • Vice Provost and Dean Shane Burgess announced on February 11 the appointment of the new University of Arizona College of Agriculture & Life Sciences associate dean for research.

    Dr. Parker Antin—Associate Dean for Research, College of Agriculture & Life Sciences

    A graduate of Union College and the University of Pennsylvania, Professor Antin is a national authority in the areas of developmental biology and genomics who has taught and conducted research at the University of Arizona since 1992.

    Dr. Antin replaces Dr. Ron Allen, who served as the CALS associate dean for research and director of the Arizona Experiment Station for almost two years before resigning the position on January 1. Dr. Allen continues as a faculty member in the School of Animal & Comparative Biomedical Sciences.

  • For its mental health and suicide prevention programs, the University of Arizona has been nationally recognized with the JedCampus seal.

    The UA is one of 37 schools nationwide to be awarded the seal, and is the first recipient in Arizona.

    The JedCampus seal is awarded by the Jed Foundation, which works to promote emotional health and prevent suicide among college and university students. This is the first year the foundation has given the seal.

    Valid for two years, the designation recognizes schools that exhibit comprehensive mental health promotion and suicide prevention programming on campus.

  • With the Arizona Legislature back in session, some in the UA community are hoping a proposed veterinary medical program will become a reality.

    Though the UA currently allows students to spend four years taking prerequisites required for a veterinary degree, students must transfer to another school to finish their degree. The proposed program would allow students to finish their degree at the UA.

    This will be the second legislative session the proposed program enters since it failed to be included in Gov. Jan Brewer’s 2013-14 budget request, according to Shane Burgess, dean of the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences.