The days are starting to get longer here in Brazil as we get closer to primavera—but of course I’ll be heading back soon to the northern hemisphere, just in time to catch a little bit of summer up there! Read the rest of this entry »
Things are moving along here with my cell wall samples. Read the rest of this entry »
My project, as explained previously, is rather interdisciplinary. And seeing as one of the most valuable projects of the KINSC, in my opinion, is to promote inter- and multi-discipinary work, I thought I’d share a little about the kinds of anthropological questions I’m asking while I’m here working at LAFIECO. (Pardon the anthropology jargon to follow.)
By now the major protests and demonstrations that have been occurring in São Paulo and across Brazil for the past couple weeks have reached the international news. It’s been amazing being able to experience this historic moment right in the heart of everything. A week and a half ago, June 17th, there was a demonstration that started literally right outside my apartment. By the end of the night 65,000 people had gathered and started to peacefully march toward Paulista Avenue and Marginal Pinheiros. Read the rest of this entry »
My project at LAFIECO for the ten weeks I am here will be to characterize the structure and arrangement of polysaccharides in the cell wall, referred to as the cell wall architecture, of various sugarcane and maize samples. There is much interest in studying this because it is hoped that a greater knowledge of cell wall architecture will allow us to better understand the structural basis for why the stems and leaves of sugarcane and maize (and all plants for that matter) are difficult to degrade.
What does this have to do with biofuels? Read the rest of this entry »
Thanks to joint funding from the KINSC and CPGC, I’m currently living in São Paulo, Brazil and working at a laboratory at the University of São Paulo. The lab, LAFIECO (Laboratory of Plant Physiological Ecology), conducts research on the growth, development, and carbohydrate metabolism of plants that are ecologically important. In the past five years or so, LAFIECO has also turned its attention to plants that are economically important—specifically, those involved in the production of biofuels. My project is related to this second line of research.
Katie Ulrich ’14 is spending her summer working at the Laboratory of Plant Physiological Ecology (LAFIECO) at the University of São Paulo in São Paulo, Brazil.