September 24, 2021

iCeMS Crossing 5 – Research Groups, the Other Half and a Pop-Quiz

Miniquiz: See if you can solve the puzzles and match the answers with these award winning scientists. A. Rosalind Elsie Franklin, B. George Andrew Olah, C. Andrew Z. Fire

On September 17, 140 people joined the fifth edition of iCeMS online retreat series. New members and group introductions, and a new form of networking allowed participants to get to know each other and gain insight into some of the behind-the-scenes personalities at iCeMS.

This month’s introductions began with the Kengaku Group. The group’s focus is on developmental neurobiology. Their website lists their major research topics as: Mechanisms and principles of branch pattern formation of dendrites; cellular and molecular dynamics of neuronal migration; and new techniques based on light microscopy. The group prepared a video where they showed off their research and personal interests through imaginative poster boards, while giving a tour of the research facilities.

The Sivaniah Group was up next. The group has been with iCeMS for eight years. They focus on membrane research with the goal of developing technology to reduce emissions and clean water through energy efficient means. Andrew Gibbons presented their introductory video which included a high-speed tour of their equipment and showed off another of their research topics, organized microfibrillation (OM) printing. Both of today’s groups were composed of members from across the globe.

This month’s new feature, the Other Half of iCeMS, let everyone meet some of the people who are supporting the research activities at iCeMS. It highlighted Takayuki “Taka” Homma from the iCeMS Analysis Center. He is responsible for managing the shared equipment in laboratories, training in safe usage, and administrative procedures for animal experiment facilities. Through his Q and A, he shared about his extended time in the UK, the most expensive piece of iCeMS equipment, and showed off a spin jump.

Last up was the Administrative Office of KUIAS (Kyoto University Institute for Advanced Study). KUIAS was established in 2016 as a hub for cutting edge research around the world and oversees iCeMS and ASHBi (Institute for the Advanced Study of Human Biology). The office has four main points of focus, general affairs, overseas affairs and press relations, financial planning, and research promotion. An amusing survey showcased some of the personalities who can be found on the first and fourth floors of the main building. Everyone was encouraged to stop by with questions or just to say hi.

This month’s networking activity moved to zoom breakout rooms for a quiz, which brough participants together and challenged them to solve a series of puzzles whose solutions were all Nobel Prize winning scientists. iCeMS Crossing will continue next month on October 15th.

(Miniquiz answers: 1. B, 2. A, 3. C.)