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February Pub Talk

Science Pub: “Clearing The Smoke: Novel Approaches to Studying the Effects of Cannabis in the Wild”
February 8th, 2022 | 6:00 – 7:00 p.m.

Sip your favorite brew, while you learn a thing or two! Science Pub is an opportunity to enjoy learning about science in an informal atmosphere; no scientific background necessary! Just bring your curiosity and a thirst to learn.

There are 2 ways to be at this event:

  1. In Person – Paradise Creek Brewery will be seating indoors at 100% capacity under the Washington State COVID-19 Mask Mandate and the pub talk will be broadcast/projected on a the large projection screen in the pub/restaurant area.
  2. On Zoom – Register for the Zoom Talk HERE. Place a food/drink order for pick up at Paradise Creek Brewery’s Downtown Restaurant – 245 SE Paradise St, Pullman. Local delivery is also available. Mention Science Pub and you’ll be sent a link by text or email to join the event. Tip: Place your order early so it’s ready by Science Pub time.

Please also visit the Facebook event for this talk.

This month’s speakers:

Join Carrie Cuttler and Ryan McLaughlin on February 8th for their pub talk, “Clearing The Smoke: Novel Approaches to Studying the Effects of Cannabis in the Wild”.

Since the first recreational cannabis dispensaries opened their doors in 2014, a staggering $9.4 billion has been spent on cannabis in Washington State alone. The growing ubiquity and destigmatization of cannabis use has many concerned since the effects of acute and chronic cannabis use remain surprisingly understudied. This lack of knowledge is largely due to federal restrictions regarding the use of cannabis for research purposes, in addition to several other practical and experimental limitations that have stalled progress in cannabis research across research disciplines. With trends in cannabis use continuing to rise across the country, the urgent need to study its effects has inspired researchers to consider novel methodological approaches that bypass federal restrictions or mitigate experimental limitations.

Studying human cannabis users, The Health and Cognition (THC) Laboratory led by Dr. Carrie Cuttler has pioneered an innovative approach that uses a virtual testing environment that affords observation of participants use of high potency cannabis products in their homes followed by administration of cognitive tests that assess unique facets of everyday life memory. Additionally, Dr. Cuttler has partnered with Strainprint® to gain access to a large community of medical cannabis users that regularly use the Strainprint app to log their symptoms of various health conditions before and after using different types of cannabis in their natural environment. Dr. Cuttler will discuss these innovative approaches and reveal what the data from her recent studies indicate regarding the acute effects of various high potency cannabis products on memory and mental health.

Using rodent models that afford in depth examinations of the effects of cannabis on the brain, Dr. Ryan McLaughlin’s Cannabis Brain Development (CBD) Laboratory has developed and validated a novel model of cannabis use that permits response-contingent delivery of vaporized cannabis extracts in rodents. This innovative approach mirrors the human experience by using the drug and route of administration that is most common in human cannabis users, thereby providing unprecedented insight into the acute and long-term effects of cannabis use on the brain. Dr. McLaughlin will discuss strengths and limitations of using rodents to study cannabis use and the advantages of adopting more translationally relevant animal models and conclude by describing recent data from his laboratory regarding potential long-term effects of maternal cannabis use on the brain and behavior of exposed offspring. By establishing these novel approaches, Dr. McLaughlin and Dr. Cuttler have purposefully positioned themselves to employ both forward and reverse translational approaches to interrogate the effects of acute and chronic cannabis use using ecologically valid approaches.

Dr. Carrie Cuttler is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Psychology at Washington State University. She received her PhD in Psychology from the University of British Columbia (UBC) where she studied memory and mental health. Following a postdoctoral fellowship in the Department of Psychiatry at UBC and a position as an Assistant Professor at Concordia University in Montreal, she was hired at WSU in 2014. The year she was hired at WSU marked the first year of recreational cannabis sales in Washington State which inspired her to focus her research program on the acute and chronic effects of cannabis on mental health and cognition. Specifically, her THC lab examines the potentially beneficial and detrimental effects of chronic cannabis use and acute cannabis intoxication on cognition (e.g., memory, executive functioning, decision making), mental health (e.g., depression, anxiety, PTSD, OCD ADHD) and stress.

Dr. Ryan McLaughlin is an Associate Professor in the Department of Integrative Physiology and Neuroscience at Washington State University. Dr. McLaughlin received his PhD in Psychology from the University of British Columbia in 2012, where he studied the role of the endocannabinoid system in the prefrontal cortex under conditions of stress. Following a postdoctoral fellowship in the Department of Psychiatry at McGill University, Dr. McLaughlin was hired at WSU in 2014 where he has since expanded his research program to study effects of cannabis on the brain and behavior using a novel, translationally relevant model of cannabis use in rodents. His laboratory currently uses this model to better understand the long-term effects of cannabis use during sensitive developmental stages, such as during pregnancy or adolescence.

Topics and presenters are arranged by the Palouse Discovery Science Center (PDSC) and WSU’s Entrepreneurial Faculty Ambassador (EFA) Program. All Donations support PDSC. Click here for more information.

October Pub Talk

Science Pub: “The Economics & Sensory Science of Wine”
October 12th, 2021 | 6:00 – 7:00 p.m.

Sip your favorite brew, while you learn a thing or two! Science Pub is an opportunity to enjoy learning about science in an informal atmosphere; no scientific background necessary! Just bring your curiosity and a thirst to learn.

There are 2 ways to be at this event:

  1. In Person – Paradise Creek Brewery will be seating indoors at 100% capacity under the Washington State COVID-19 Mask Mandate and the pub talk will be broadcast/projected on a the large projection screen in the pub/restaurant area.
  2. On Zoom – Register for the Zoom Talk HERE. Place a food/drink order for pick up at Paradise Creek Brewery’s Downtown Restaurant – 245 SE Paradise St, Pullman. Local delivery is also available. Mention Science Pub and you’ll be sent a link by text or email to join the event. Tip: Place your order early so it’s ready by Science Pub time.

Please also visit the Facebook event for this talk.

This month’s speakers:

Join Jill McCluskey and Carolyn Ross on October 12th for their pub talk, “The Economics & Sensory Science of Wine”.

Jill’s talk will cover some of her studies on the economics of wine, especially the factors that influence prices. She will close with a discussion of a jointly authored paper with Carolyn Ross on how consumers respond to different oak treatments. Carolyn will then give a talk about sensory studies conducted with wine.

Dr. Jill J. McCluskey is Regents Professor and Director of the School of Economic Sciences at Washington State University. McCluskey’s research focuses on product quality and reputation, sustainable labeling, consumer preferences for new technology, and representation of women in STEM. An award-winning researcher, she is widely published and cited. Her research has been funded by private foundations, NSF, and USDA. An award-winning mentor, she has served as major professor to 46 Ph.D. graduates, many of whom are Professors at major research universities. She is a member of the Board on Agricultural and Natural Resources of the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. She is an Editor of the American Journal of Agricultural Economics, past President and Fellow of the Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, Fellow of the Western Agricultural Economics Association, and a member of the WA State Academies of Sciences. Her research has been highlighted by various media outlets including the New York Times, National Public Radio, and Newsday. She received her Ph.D. in Agricultural and Resource Economics from the University of California, Berkeley.

 

Dr. Carolyn Ross is a Professor in the School of Food Science at Washington State University (WSU), Affiliate Professor in the WSU School of Medicine, and Director of the WSU Sensory Science Center. The overall objectives of Dr. Ross’ research and graduate education program are to understand the theoretical basis underpinning the sensory perception of foods and wines and correlate these attributes with quantifiable characteristics. Dr. Ross has also expanded her research into the area of food texture perception in children.  Dr. Ross has established her lab and the WSU Sensory Science Center as a center for graduate student training in the areas of sensory science and analytical chemistry.  In 2019 and 2020, she was the recipient of the Institute of Food Technologists Tanner Award for most‐cited article in the Journal of Food Science (sensory and food quality section).  Dr. Ross was also recently awarded the WSU Faculty Excellence Award for Instruction.

Topics and presenters are arranged by the Palouse Discovery Science Center (PDSC) and WSU’s Entrepreneurial Faculty Ambassador (EFA) Program. All Donations support PDSC. Click here for more information.

September Pub Talk

Science Pub: “Infancy and Early Childhood: Foundations for a Healthy Life”
September 14th, 2021 | 6:00 – 7:00 p.m.

Sip your favorite brew, while you learn a thing or two! Science Pub is an opportunity to enjoy learning about science in an informal atmosphere; no scientific background necessary! Just bring your curiosity and a thirst to learn.

There are 2 ways to be at this event:

  1. In Person – Paradise Creek Brewery will be seating indoors at 100% capacity under the Washington State COVID-19 Mask Mandate and the pub talk will be broadcast/projected on a the large projection screen in the pub/restaurant area.
  2. On Zoom – Register for the Zoom Talk HERE. Place a food/drink order for pick up at Paradise Creek Brewery’s Downtown Restaurant – 245 SE Paradise St, Pullman. Local delivery is also available. Mention Science Pub and you’ll be sent a link by text or email to join the event. Tip: Place your order early so it’s ready by Science Pub time.

Please also visit the Facebook event for this talk.

This month’s speakers:

Join Maria (Masha) Gartstein and Sammy Perone on September 14th for their pub talk, “Infancy and Early Childhood: Foundations for a Healthy Life”.

Infancy is an important developmental period because it provides the foundation for our more complex abilities as we get older. Early development of emotional reactivity is particularly critical as these shape later personality, and steer us toward either adjustment and wellbeing or a pathway that involves challenges with symptoms and disorders compromising mental health later in life. The value of understanding emerging self-regulation is underscored by the fact that its deficits contribute to most identifiable psychiatric symptoms and disorders, and reactivity sets the stage for this critical milestone, as it “comes online” first.

Two important components of emotional reactivity are approach/positive affectivity and avoidance/fearfulness, which are defined and measured on the behavioral, information processing, and brain activity levels. Avoidance/fearfulness develops rapidly at the end of the first year of life which may be an important window of time for early intervention. This development is open to input of contextual factors, including gender, maternal depression, and cultural influences. For example, fear growth is accelerated for girls and infants of mothers reporting more severe symptoms of depression. In addition, culture shapes the extent to which approach/avoidance contribute to development of more advanced attention-based self-regulation.

Emotional reactivity is one piece of self-regulation which refers to our capacity to control our behavior to meet the demands of the context within which we are situated. Self-regulation has an essential role in mental health, physical health, and social well-being across the lifespan. Self-regulation takes root in the brain during infancy. For example, specific types of brain activity in infants’ brains relate to what they attend to and for how long, what they remember, and how they respond to situations that may be joyful or stressful. Infants’ environment influences how their brains develop, too. For example, how parents and infants interact with each other influences growth in brain activity as do environments that are socially and cognitively impoverished.

The same patterns of brain activity in infants that relate to their first abilities to self-regulate persist into early childhood and adulthood. As infants develop into children, they begin to develop the capacity to control themselves in a more intentional way. This ability is called “executive function.” Amazingly, preschool-age children who have “good” executive function abilities grow up to be adults who are healthy, responsible citizens, and, by mid-life, are prepared to age physically and financially well. But this doesn’t mean a child with “poor” executive function abilities is destined to grow into an unhealthy adult. Instead, it means we must identify factors that put infants and children at risk and also those factors that nurture these abilities early in development when they are most malleable.

Current projects in Dr. Gartstein’s and Dr. Perone’s labs at WSU are working toward this goal by focusing on brain activity underlying approach/avoidance and considering how parent-child interactions can positively contribute to self-regulation and brain development. Families with infants or young children interested in participating in our research can email developing.mind@wsu.edu.

Dr. Maria (Masha) Gartstein is a professor in the Washington State University (WSU) Department of Psychology and the Clinical Psychology Doctoral Program Director, as well as the Director of ADVANCE at WSU. Current research interests focus on temperament development. Chief among these is the study of the role that parenting plays in how temperament “comes online” in early childhood – featured in the “Nature and Nurture” episode of the Netflix documentary “Babies”. Cross-cultural difference in temperament development represents another area of study, with the help from a global network of collaborators, who recently collaborated on a book, entitled: “Temperament, Parents and Culture: Findings from the Joint Effort Toddler Temperament Consortium (JETTC).” Importantly, Masha Gartstein has focused of brain activity underpinning temperament development. Collaborating with Sammy Perone she is conducting research funded by the National Science foundation, aimed at increasing our understanding of how approach/avoidance emotions and motivation shape the emergence of self-regulation, and how parenting contributes to these processes.

https://labs.wsu.edu/infant-temperament/
https://advance.wsu.edu
@mashagartstein

 

Dr. Sammy Perone moved to Pullman, WA with his wife and two daughters from Minnesota in 2016. He is an assistant professor in the Department of Human Development at WSU. He leads the Lab for the Developing Mind which conducts research on self-regulation from infancy to adulthood. The lab is especially interested in expanding knowledge of how self-regulation develops and working toward innovative ways to foster self-regulation during childhood. The lab provides undergraduate students hands-on experience conducting research on child development and provides mentorship to graduate students in advanced study of development. The lab regularly disseminates information about child development in the local community.

Topics and presenters are arranged by the Palouse Discovery Science Center (PDSC) and WSU’s Entrepreneurial Faculty Ambassador (EFA) Program. All Donations support PDSC. Click here for more information.

May Pub Talk

Pubtalk May 11thScience Pub To-Go via Zoom: “Size, Shape & Location –  Investigating adaptive phenotypes from the cell to big data with drones & satellite imaging”
May 11th, 2021 | 6:00 – 7:00 p.m.

Sip your favorite brew, while you learn a thing or two! Science Pub is an opportunity to enjoy learning about science in an informal atmosphere; no scientific background necessary! Just bring your curiosity and a thirst to learn.

There are 2 ways to be at this event:

  1. On ZoomRegister for the Zoom Talk HERE. Place a food/drink order for pick up at Paradise Creek Brewery’s Downtown Restaurant – 245 SE Paradise St, Pullman. Local delivery is also available. Mention Science Pub and you’ll be sent a link by text or email to join the event. Tip: Place your order early so it’s ready by Science Pub time.
  2. In Person – Paradise Creek Brewery will be seating indoors at 25% capacity under the Washington State COVID-19 Phase 2 Guidelines and the pub talk will be broadcast/projected on a the large projection screen in the pub/restaurant area. Please arrive early if you plan to join in person.

Paradise Creek Brewery is donating 10% of all food & drink proceeds from the evening to Palouse Discovery Science Center. Science Pub Talk is FREE, with a suggested $5 donation benefiting PDSC.

Please also visit the Facebook event for this talk.

This month’s speakers:

Join Laura Lavine and Sindhuja Sankaran on May 11th for their pub talk via Zoom, “Size, Shape & Location –  Investigating adaptive phenotypes from the cell to big data with drones & satellite imaging”.

The size and shape of an organism is due to both genes and the environment. How an organism adapts to its environment can predict its ability to respond to change. Their talk will focus on both basic and applied research to tell the story of how two women in STEM have built careers investigating an organism’s ability to adapt to its environment.

Lavine and Sankaran will focus the talk on the cellular and genetic responses to the environment in the weapons of sexual selection in beetles. From there they will discuss how the ability of an insect pest to respond to its environment allows the pest to be successful at the expense of a crop. They will then transition to big data. In recent years, the availability of advanced sensor technologies in terms of hardware (e.g. IoT devices) and software capabilities with better spatial and spectral resolution is becoming more common. These systems allow us to evaluate several biologically relevant crop traits at multiple (macro to micro) scales, with assistance from data mining approaches that offers sensible and functional data analysis. The talk will discuss applications of satellite imagery to plant level sensors, involving both optical and volatile sensing allowing us to grasp better understanding of crop adaptation to the environment. Lavine and Sankaran will summarize by pointing out that the complexity of size, shape and location that an organisms finds itself in are all parts of its ability to adapt to change.

Laura LavineDr. Laura Lavine is Professor and Chair of the Washington State University Department of Entomology.  Dr. Lavine received her Ph.D. in Entomology at the University of Kentucky and was a USDA NIFA Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of Wisconsin-Madison with National Academy of Science member Michael R. Strand before coming to WSU in 2001. Her research program on the evolution of adaptation has focused on understanding the mechanisms underlying an organism’s ability to rapidly adjust to its environment. Her research has been funded by the NSF and the USDA as well as commodity commissions and she has published her work in diverse journals such as Nature, Science, and the Proceedings of the National Academy of Science. Dr. Lavine has held many formal and informal leadership roles while at WSU both nationally, regionally, and at WSU. A few highlights include: Associate Director of the WSU College of Agricultural, Human, and Natural Resource Sciences Agricultural Research Center, Interim Director of ADVANCE at WSU, President of the WSU Association for Faculty Women, Chair of the WSU Conflict of Interest Committee, Chair of the Experiment Station Committee on Policy, Science and Technology committee, and member of the WSU Teaching Academy.

Sindhuja SakaranDr. Sindhuja Sankaran is an Associate Professor at Washington State University in the Department of Biological Systems Engineering. A researcher in agricultural automation engineering, Dr. Sankaran engages in sensing data-driven research that transform how we study the interaction between crops, genetics and environment to produce sustainable food, fiber and fuels. Based at WSU Pullman, Sankaran’s work focuses on advanced sensor technologies that detect and measure phenotypes—the physical expression of genes—in crops, supporting plant breeding, crop plant research, and precision agriculture. She utilizes opto-electronic, biological, and chemical sensors for non-invasive, rapid and continuous monitoring of plant responses to environmental stress, helping create a faster and better understanding of how our food crops react to a changing environment. Over the past seven years, she has been working closely with multiple crop breeding programs ranging from cereal, grain legume, and specialty crops to evaluate traits including crop vigor, stress tolerance, and seed size and quality.

Topics and presenters are arranged by the Palouse Discovery Science Center (PDSC) and WSU’s Entrepreneurial Faculty Ambassador (EFA) Program. All Donations support PDSC. Click here for more information.