Dr. Robbin Thorp: 1933-2019
Dr. Robbin Thorp, a global and legendary authority on bees and a distinguished emeritus professor of entomology at the University of California, Davis, passed away Friday, June 7 at his home in Davis, surrounded by family. He was 85.
Dr. Thorp, a member of the UC Davis entomology faculty for 30 years, from 1964-1994, achieved emeritus status in 1994 but continued to engage in research, teaching and public service until a few weeks before his death.
A tireless advocate of pollinator species protection and conservation, Dr. Thorp was known for his expertise, dedication and passion in protecting native pollinators, especially bumble bees, and for his teaching, research and public service. He was an authority on pollination ecology, ecology and systematics of honey bees, bumble bees, vernal pool bees, conservation of bees, native bees and crop pollination, and bees of urban gardens and agricultural landscapes.
“Robbin's scientific achievements during his retirement rival the typical career productivity of many other academic scientists,” said Steve Nadler, professor and chair of the UC Davis Department of Entomology and Nematology. “His contributions in support of understanding bee biodiversity and systematics are a true scientific legacy.” -more-
Hammock Lab: Cancer Research Paper Named Editor's Pick in Journal of Clinical InvestigationBruce Hammock laboratory, University of California, Davis, has been named the Journal of Clinical Investigation's Editor's Pick for the month of July.
Scientists from UC Davis and Harvard Medical School co-authored the paper on how blocking inflammation and/or activating the resolution of inflammation before surgery or chemotherapy can eradicate small tumors and promote long-term survival in experimental animal cancer models.
The paper, “Preoperative Stimulation of Resolution and Inflammation Blockade Eradicates Micrometastases,” available online beginning June 17, combines the expertise of Professor Bruce Hammock and researcher Jun Yang of UC Davis with that of the Harvard Medical School team led by Dipak Panigrahy and Allison Gartung; Professor Vikas Sukhatme from Emory University School of Medicine, Atlanta; and Professor Charles Serhan from Brigham and Women's Hospital/Harvard Medical School.
“During chemotherapy or surgery, dying cancer cells can trigger inflammation and the growth of microscopic cancerous cells,” said Hammock, a distinguished professor who holds a joint appointment with the UC Davis Department of Entomology and Nematology and the UC Davis Comprehensive Cancer Center. -more-
Neal Williams Selected Fellow, California Academy of SciencesNeal Williams, professor with the UC Davis Department of Entomology and Nematology, is a newly selected Fellow of the California Academy of Sciences, a group of world-class scientists known for their scientific impact or outstanding contributions.
Williams was nominated by Academy Fellow James R. Carey, distinguished professor of entomology, and seconded by Academy Fellow Claire Kremen of the University of British Columbia, formerly of UC Berkeley.
In his letter of nomination, Carey wrote that Williams is “widely known and respected for his excellence in research, extension, outreach, teaching and leadership” and “is not only one of the stars of our campus, and the UC system, but is an internationally recognized leader in pollination and bee biology and strong voice in the development of collaborative research on insect ecology. He has organized national and international conferences, leads scores of working groups, and guides reviews of impacts of land use and other global change drivers on insects and the ecosystem services they provide.” -more-
Honey Bee Haven Celebrating National Pollinator Week
The Häagen-Dazs Honey Bee Haven, operated by the UC Davis Department of Entomology and Nematology, will be a 'hive' of activity June 17-21, announced manager Christine Casey, academic program management officer. "We'll be hosting National Pollinator Week events between 10 a.m. and noon each day." Activities include bee information and identification, solitary bee house making, and catch-and-release bee observation.
The haven also will sell bee friendly plants and bee houses to support the haven (cash and checks only).
A new event at the haven is hive opening. At 11:45 a.m. on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, California Master Beekeeper volunteers will be open the hive in the haven "so visitors may see the girls in action."
Register for International Pollinator Conference at UC Davis
UC Davis is hosting the International Pollinator Conference, themed “Multidimensional Solutions to Current and Future Threats to Pollinator Health,” on July 17-20 in the UC Davis Conference Center on Alumni Drive. It will cover a wide range of topics in pollinator research: from genomics to ecology and their application to land use and management; to breeding of managed bees; and to monitoring of global pollinator populations.
You can register online on the UC Davis Honey and Pollination Center site. The UC Davis Honey and Pollination Center, directed by Amina Harris, is playing a major role in the international conference. Events manager Elizabeth Luu is the conference coordinator.
Jackson Audley Receives Forestry Award for His ResearchWestern Forest Insect Work Conference (WFIWC) Memorial Scholarship Award for his research on the chemical ecology of an invasive bark beetle, the walnut twig beetle.
Audley, who conducts his research in a commercial orchard near Winters, investigates behavioral chemicals that repel the walnut twig beetle from landing on English walnut trees. The walnut twig beetle (Pityophthorus juglandis), in association with a canker-producing fungus, Geosmithia morbida, causes the insect-pathogen complex known as thousand cankers disease.
“The disease threatens both native black walnuts across North America and agriculturally important English walnut, particularly in California,” Audley said, who received the $1000 award at the recent conference in Anchorage. “My research focuses on improving our understanding of the walnut twig beetle's chemical ecology and developing a semiochemical repellent tool to manage the threat.” -more-
Research from Hammock Lab: Davis Company Receives $5 Million Investment
EicOsis LLC, a Davis-based company seeking to block chronic pain in humans and companion animals, has received a $5 million investment from Open Philanthropy to move original research developed in the UC Davis laboratory of Professor Bruce Hammock into human clinical trials.
The drug candidate, known as EC5026, targets a novel pathway to block the underlying cause of certain types of pain. Described by EicOsis as a “novel, non-opioid and oral therapy for neuropathic and inflammatory pain,” it is an inhibitor to the soluble epoxide hydrolase (sEH) enzyme, a key regulatory enzyme involved in the metabolism of fatty acids. UC Davis recently licensed certain patents supporting the underlying technology exclusively to EicOsis.
Clinical trials are expected to begin this summer.
“Chronic pain is an enormous emotional and economic burden for more than 100 million people in the United States alone,” said Hammock, a UC Davis a distinguished professor who holds a joint appointment with the Department of Entomology and Nematology and the UC Davis Comprehensive Cancer Center. He co-founded EicOsis in December 2011 to alleviate pain in humans and companion animals. “The extreme and poorly treated pain that I observed as a medical officer working in a burn clinic in the Army, is a major driver for me to translate my research to help patients with severe pain.” -more-
UC Davis Entomology Ranked Among Best in the WorldTimes Higher Education World University Rankings.
The rankings show UC Davis as No. 7 globally, scoring 89.88 of a possible 100. Of the top 10, two are in California. UC Riverside is ranked as No. 2.
Performance indicators are grouped into five areas: Teaching (the learning environment); research (volume, income and reputation); citations (research influence); international outlook (staff students and research) and industry outcome (knowledge transfer). -more-
In the Spotlight
- Department News
- Spring Quarter Seminars
- UC Davis Museum Biodiversity Day video on YouTube. la
- Why War on Cancer Is Winnable: Jay Rosenheim
- Bohart Museum Open Houses
- Center for Population Biology Seminars
- UC Davis Entomology Seminars Posted on UCTV
- Order a EGSA T-Shirt!
- Watch UC Davis Bee Symposium Presentations on YouTube
- Eric Grissell: Giving Back
- History of Our Bee Garden
- 'I Wanna Be an Entomologist' by Heather Wilson
Blogs, Books, and Other Connections
- Ecology 180 Blog; class led by Louie Yang
- Rick Karban's Plant Communication Book
- Alex Wild's Compound Eye Blog: Some of Best Nature/Science Photographs
- UC Davis Department of Entomology (Facebook)
- Harry H. Laidlaw Jr. Honey Bee Research Facility (Facebook)
- Häagen-Dazs Honey Bee Haven (Facebook)
- E.L. Niño Bee Lab (Facebook)
- Bug Squad blog (Kathy Keatley Garvey)
- Robbin Thorp Co-Author of California Bees and Blooms
- Robbin Thorp Co-Author of Bumble Bees of North America
- Apiary newsletter, from the UC apiaries (Elina L. Niño)
- Apiary newsletter, from the UC apiaries (archived, Eric Mussen)
- New Ant Book (free): Photos by Alex Wild
- Insect Note Cards, Benefitting UC Davis Honey and Pollination Center
|International Pollination Conference July 17-20||7/17/2019|
|International Pollination Conference July 17-20||7/18/2019|
|International Pollination Conference July 17-20||7/19/2019|
|International Pollination Conference July 17-20||7/20/2019|
|Moth Night at Bohart Museum||8/3/2019|
Apiary Newsletters (archived copies, Eric Mussen)
How to Write Like a Professor (James R. Carey)
What's This Bug? (CDFA)