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Friday, May 14, 2010


Symposium, Dinner Celebrate Bissell’s 70th Birthday

Image of Mina Bissell

“Cancer, Complexity and the Microenvironment” was the theme of a daylong symposium honoring the seminal contributions to tumor biology research made by Mina Bissell, Distinguished Scientist with Berkeley Lab’s Life Sciences Division. Speaking before a filled Building 50 Auditorium, Lab Director Paul Alivisatos compared Mina to Ernest Lawrence in her ability to bring together scientists from diverse backgrounds. “We owe Mina an enormous debt for creating a world-class cancer biology program at the Lab,” he said. Renowned cancer researchers from around the world, many of whom Mina mentored, delivered a series of lectures, followed by a reception, dinner, and dance at the Claremont Hotel. Go here for more on Bissell’s research.

Research: New Study on Breast Cancer and Radiation

Breast Cancer imageNew concerns about radiation and breast cancer were raised in a study led by Paul Yaswen and including Rituparna Mukhopadhyay, Sylvain Costes, William Hines and Mary Helen Barcellos-Hoff, all with the Life Sciences Division. The study shows that even when radiation exposure does no direct genetic damage, it can alter the environment surrounding the cells so that future cells are more likely to become cancerous. This is further evidence for the treatment of cancer as a “systems biology” disease. More>

Research: Telltale Petals at the Superconductive Transition

Superconductive Transition imageHigh-temperature superconductivity is a persistent mystery, but scientists have found telling relationships among superconductivity and other remarkable states exhibited by high Tc materials. Working with Eli Rotenberg at the Advanced Light Source, a team from Iowa State University and DOE’s Ames Laboratory examined the iron-arsenic family, where superconductivity and magnetism compete. Critical changes in electronic structure are revealed in the diagram of the Fermi surface: when petal-like hole pockets are present in the diagram, superconductivity is fully suppressed, whereas in their absence the two states can coexist. More>

People:  Emergency Specialist Gets International, State Honors

Mathew Bettenhausen and Jan McClellanJan McClellan, an emergency services specialist with the Lab’s Environment, Health and Safety Division, was recently honored with two prestigious emergency management awards. She received certification from the International Association of Emergency Managers as well as the California Emergency Management Agency. McClellan is pictured (right) with Mathew Bettenhausen, secretary of the state’s Emergency Management Agency.

Special Event: Photography Club Spring Showcase is Today

Photography Club imageThe Lab’s Photography Club is hosting an exhibit of member’s work today from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. in Perseverance Hall. A wine-and-cheese reception takes place at 4:30 p.m. All guests who stop by the showcase will be entered into a raffle, with the winner announced at the reception (winner need not be present). The exhibit will also include a competition table, and guests will be asked to vote for their favorite. Note: Director Paul Alivisatos is among those who submitted a photograph for the exhibit.

Traffic Update: UC Berkeley Graduation Season Starts Today

Commencement ceremonies for UC Berkeley graduates begin today, with events taking place at the Greek Theatre and Alumni House. Ceremonies will continue through Saturday, May 29. Attendance at the events can cause traffic back-ups and delay those trying to reach the Lab, particularly via Blackberry Gate. Refer to the complete ceremony list when making travel plans.

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