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Faculty of Science

News and Events for
UBC Science Alumni | Issue 4, 2018

Sign up for the UBC Chemistry reunion

September 22, join us to celebrate 102 years of Chemistry at UBC. Reconnect with old friends and recognize the accomplishments of our alumni, students, faculty and staff. A research symposium, BBQ and tours round out the day.

Could a deadly mushroom help battle cancer?

UBC chemists have produced the first synthetic version of a toxin found in the infamous death cap mushroom. The toxin can kill cancer cells, but extracting it from wild mushrooms is time consuming, so a synthetic version could save lives.


Alumni Day at Homecoming
Enjoy free admission to UBC attractions, an exclusive alumni experience at the football game, and an awesome ’80s party. 
September 22, 2018


Skin and Bones 
Examine our complicated relationship with the animal world in this exhibition that intersects natural science, fine art and fashion.
Opens September 15, 2018


Southern Resident Killer Whales: Risks and Realities
Join UBC marine mammal researcher Andrew Trites in Victoria as he discusses the issues affecting killer whale populations.
September 27, 2018

Gut enzymes could yield universal blood

Since the 1980s chemists have tried to use enzymes to create universal blood, which could ease blood shortages. Now, UBC researchers have found a new group of enzymes in the human gut that can accomplish the task 30 times better than previous candidates.

virus research
Zooming in on viruses

UBC chemists analyzing the deadly Nipah virus have discovered they assemble themselves in a much more haphazard manner than previously thought. A UBC-patented microscope made the discovery possible.

Out of the blue

Botanist Patrick Keeling details the evolutionary thread connecting malaria and coral reefs. Corals provide an “unexpected glimpse into the transition from symbiont to parasite.”



Matthew Dahabieh
Biochem alumnus looking to harness power of yeast

Biochemist and molecular biologist Matthew Dahabieh (BSc 06’, MSc 08’, PhD 13’) explains why yeast research is a big deal. “Since the 1800s, industry has focused on a very small set of strains that are useful, and now there’s a bottleneck in yeast biodiversity.”

Angie O’Neill
Award-winning science prof talks wonder of biology

"Biology isn’t a bunch of facts. It’s a process of discovery and understanding,” says two-time UBC Science Killam Prize for Excellence in Teaching winner Angie O’Neill.

  • UBC researcher David Boyd has taken on the role of special rapporteur on human rights and the environment for the UN Human Rights Council.
  • Vanessa Auld has begun a five-year term as head of UBC’s Department of Zoology.
  • The Canadian Association of Physicists has awarded medals to Andrea Damascelli, Alison Lister and Ariel Zhitnitsky.
  • Brett Finlay has received a $5.8M Foundation Grant from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research to support his research on host-microbe interactions.
  • Lab manager and biologist Winnie Cheung is a recipient of the UBC President’s Staff Awards.
Laser breakthrough has researchers close to cooling down antimatter

Researchers at CERN have used a laser system developed by UBC chemist Takamasa Momose to observe a benchmark atomic energy transition in antihydrogen.

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