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Jessica Lucas has received $407,821 from the National Science Foundation to support " MRI: Acquisition of a Confocal Microscope for Multi-disciplinary Research".
This award enables Santa Clara University to acquire a cutting-edge confocal microscope. Students and faculty performing research in anthropology, biology, bioengineering, and chemistry will use this confocal microscope. This microscope allows researchers to make accurate and precise measurements in three dimensions over time. This microscope enables faculty and students to collect critical scientific data that will help address core questions in molecular and developmental biology of both plants and animals. This microscope will also be used to study the interaction of certain widespread chemicals with common protein structures. The three dimensional shape of fossilized plant cells will be captured on this microscope, and that information will be used to inform models of past environments and plant evolution. Additionally this microscope will be used to help develop fluorescent proteins switches that will aid scientists in multiple fields. Overall, a broad group of university faculty members and mentored student researchers will use this microscope to study key questions in multiple areas of biology and chemistry.