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CNCS News & Events

Apr. 26 - Congratulations to graduating senior Erik Henze (B.S. Biochemistry ’16) for receiving a 2016 H.Y. Benedict Fellowship from Alpha Chi National Honor Society! Erik has been participating in undergraduate research at HPU for the past two years with Associate Professor of Biochemistry Dr. Yongli Chen, and had the opportunity to present at several scientific conferences during that time. He will begin his graduate studies at Cornell in the fall.

Apr. 15 - An update is now available with the status and reception of OI’s first batch of captive-bred yellow tangs among the aquarium community!

Apr. 3 - Associate Professor of Oceanography Dr. David Hyrenbach was the featured speaker at Hanauma Bay's educational outreach seminar series, Sundays at the Bay. His talk was entitled "Monitoring and research of an urban shearwater colony at the Freeman Seabird Preserve."

March 8 - The first batch of captive-bred yellow tangs shipped from the Oceanic Institute at Hawaii Pacific University (OI) to two ornamental fish wholesale distributors on the mainland. Director of Finfish Breeding at OI and CNCS Affiliate Faculty member, Dr. Chad Callan, says proceeds from this first sale will directly support further research to refine the technology for application with other surgeonfish. Read the full article.

Mar. 7 - Associate Professor of Oceanography Dr. David Hyrenbach and colleagues co-authored the proceedings of a Society for Conservation Biology special session devoted to 'Geospatial approaches to support pelagic conservation planning and adaptive management' held in Oakland, CA, in July 2012. 

Mar. 1 - Congratulations to Associate Professor of Oceanography Dr. Varis Grundmanis whose outstanding photo of an endangered green sea turtle (Chelonia mydas) with surgeonfish has been selected for use in the International Union for Conservation of Nature’s media for the upcoming IUCN World Conservation Congress, 1-10 September 2016.

Feb. 21 - Associate Professor of Environmental Studies Dr. Stephen Allen was interviewed by The Maui News regarding the use of biosolids in compost at the Maui EKO composting plant.

Professor of Chemistry Dr. David Horgen and his colleagues at the French Institute of Health and Medical Research (Brest, France) identified the TRPM7 ion channel protein‘s key role in cystic fibrosis. Their discovery appears in the journal Cellular and Molecular Life Sciences, and opens the potential for new treatment strategies. Notably, aspects of this paper and other recent advances in the field of TRPM7 research were made possible by the prior work of two CNCS alumni—Dr. Cedric Kuo (B.S. Biochemistry) and Ms. Brandi Kivi (M.S. Marine Science)—who helped develop a potent TRPM7 inhibitor from a Hawaiian soft coral while they were still students at HPU.

MSMS concurrent student Sarah Donahue was awarded the runner-up poster presentation award at the 2016 Pacific Seabird Group Conference held in O'ahu last week. Her presentation was entitled, "Diet of Red-footed Boobies Provisioning Chicks on O‘ahu".

Feb. 11-13 - The Pelagicos lab is participating in the Pacific Seabird Group Conference at Turtle Bay, O'ahu, between February 11 - 13. Dr. David Hyrenbach, MSMS alum Shannon Lyday, and MSMS graduate students Catherine Pham and Sarah Donahue will be making presentations.

Feb. 9 - Dr. David Hyrenbach, Associate Professor of Oceanography, discussed seabird conservation on Think Tech Hawai'i: "Climate Change - Beyond Outrage". Watch it here.

Jan. 25-29 - MSMS graduate student Catherine Pham is presenting her MSMS thesis research at the Alaska Marine Science Symposium in Anchorage. Entitled "Interannual variability in seabird communities with respect to prey and oceanography in the northern Bering and Chukchi seas", this research was completed in the lab of Associate Professor of Oceanography Dr. David Hyrenbach in collaboration with USFWS and NOAA researchers.

The latest issue of the journal Diseases of Aquatic Organisms features the work of HPU alum Jessica Jacob (B.S. '11, MSMS '12). The paper, entitled "Initial characterization of novel beaked whale morbillivirus in Hawaiian cetaceans", is based on Jessica's master’s thesis work and was coauthored by CNCS Associate Dean Dr. Brenda Jensen and Associate Professor of Biology Dr. Kristi West.

Jan. 6 - Associate Professor of Biology Dr. Kristi West was recently interviewed by Hawaii Public Radio regarding this year’s delayed humpback whale migration. The whales annually migrate from Alaska to Hawaii, but the whales have been running behind for the 2015-2016 season. During the interview, Dr. West speculates that the warmer northern waters from a strong El Nino year could be causing the whales to arrive later than would normally be expected.

Dec. 2 - In collaboration with researchers from INRS-Institut Armand-Frappier, HPU alum Tifanie Vansach (B.S. Marine Biology '11) and Professor of Chemistry Dr. David Horgen published a paper in the journal Food Chemistry. Their research focused on the antimicrobial effects of algae and cyanobacteria--collected from around Oahu and the Caribbean--on some common foodborn pathogens. Several of the compounds showed antimicrobial activity which could lead to further research on the application of these compounds to our food system.

Nov. 14 - The CNCS’s Department of Computer Science sent six student teams to the annual Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) Pacific Northwest Region’s International Collegiate Programming Contest (ICPC). Two of HPU’s teams competed in Division 1 while four competed in Division 2, with all teams being coached by Computer Science faculty Dr. Curt Powley and Dr. Yi Zhu. This year, HPU had three teams finish in the top three across both divisions at the Hawaii site, including taking first place in Hawaii’s Division 1; a complete listing of the ICPC contest results for HPU’s student participants can be found in this article.

HPU Pelagicos Lab Professor Dr. David Hyrenbach, undergraduate alum Matt Dwyer, and Masters of Science in Marine Science graduates  Shannon Lyday, Dan Rapp, and Sarah Youngren presented their research at the 3rd International Seabird Conference, held in Cape Town, South Africa in October 2015. As part of their work with the BIOPS program--a collaboration between Oikonos, the National Fish and Wildlife Service, and NOAA--the lab highlighted their findings from the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands (Plastic ingestion by Tern Island Seabirds: a community-wide perspective) as well as the Main Hawaiian islands (Developing Metrics for Plastic Ingestion by Wedge-tailed Shearwaters).

Nov. 8 - Local newsreports that a team of researchers, including Associate Professor Dr. Kristi West, is investigating a false killer whale (Pseudorca crassidens) carcass that washed up on the Big Island. The animal was flown to Oahu where it will be studied for clues to help protect the remaining ~200 member Hawaiian population,and the species as a whole.

A team of researchers from the Finfish Department at Oceanic Institute of Hawaii Pacific University is in the news again. Led by HPU affiliate faculty member Dr. Chad Callan, the team was the first to raise a cohort of entirely captive-bred yellow tang past the larval stage. As a heavily-collected reef fish in the aquarium trade, the team’s recent and ongoing achievements with captive yellow tang could assist in the preservation of both wild populations and the natural reef habitat they occupy

Oct. 22 - Jessica Jacob (BS '11, MSMS '12) has had a paper based on her masters’ thesis work accepted for publication in the journal Diseases of Aquatic Organisms. The paper, entitled “Initial characterization of the novel Beaked Whale Morbillivirus in Hawaiian cetaceans”, was co-authored by her thesis advisor, CNCS Associate Dean Dr. Brenda Jensen, and the thesis committee’s members, including HPU Biology faculty member Dr. Kristi West.

Oct. 9 - Professor of Chemistry Dr. F. David Horgen, along with HPU students Davey Cagle (B.S. Biology '11, M.B.A./M.A. Communication ‘16) and Kristopher Karanovich (B.S. Biology major), published a paper with colleagues at Texas A&M University entitled "Macrolactone Nuiapolide, Isolated from a Hawaiian Marine Cyanobacterium, Exhibits Anti-Chemotactic Activity" in the journal Marine Drugs (2015, 13, 6274-6290). The research described the discovery of a new drug-like substance from marine microorganisms growing in waters near Niihau as well as biological activity of the substance associated with inhibiting the spread of cancer cells in the body.

Congratulations to MSMS student Sarah Leicht, alum Daniel Luck (MSMS ’13), and Associate Professor of Oceanography Dr. Sam Kahng whose co-authored paper entitled “Polyphyly and hidden species among Hawaiʻi’s dominant mesophotic coral genera, Leptoseris and Pavona (Scleractinia: Agariciidae)” was selected as one of the top Marine Biology articles of the past month by PeerJ.  To see all selected articles, go to the “Top Marine Biology Papers – September 2015” Collection or go directly to the paper.

Sept. 24 - CNCS Chair of Environmental Science/Studies and Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design Accredited Professional (LEED AP) Dr. Stephen Allen was a featured expert on Hawai’i Public Radio’s search for Long Term Solutions For Hawaii’s Hot Classrooms.

Sept. 18 - Following the recent publication of the Antineutrino Global Map, our very own Dr. Stephen Dye, Professor of Physics, was featured on NPR’s “Science Friday” program. The interview can be heard via Science Friday’s website.

Two of our Marine Science faculty will be participating in the Fall 2015 Global Issues Lecture Series, Climate Change: Past, Present & Future. The series will feature Dr. David Field on Friday, September 25th (“Navigating Ocean Warming”) and Dr. Chris Winn on Friday, Nov. 6th (“Carbon Dioxide and the Sea”). Both lectures will be from 1:30-2:30pm at Aloha Tower Marketplace.

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