Category Archives: Linus Pauling Institute

Oops that’s a mistake.. No, that’s a new detox pathway!

It’s graduation season and for those folks who think grad school isn’t for them, take a look at this week’s guest who is one of the first to participate in the 4+1 Bioresource Research program in the College of Agricultural Sciences allowing students to complete their undergraduate and graduate degrees in 5 years! Taylor Hughes is an Oregonian native who grew up testing the river through his backyard for organic pollutants that would eventually lead him to Oregon State University scholarship. Like most recent graduates, high school and college alike, he didn’t know exactly which career path to take. He was looking towards environmental sciences after a pivotal class in high school that forced him identify an ecological system and develop a method to test a hypothesis; essentially he was a scientist in the making!

Chasing giant Fall Chinook on the Umpqua River in my hometown

Chasing giant Fall Chinook on the Umpqua River in my hometown

Fast-forward through the pre-requisite classes, and four years at OSU, and Taylor is now a recent graduate of the Bioresource Research degree focusing on toxicology. The degree requires some research hours where he worked on a senior thesis focusing on how naturally produced bodily chemicals were influencing our bodies’ endocannabinoid receptors system that work to keep our internal functions stable. This was Taylor’s first exposure to the “-omics” branch of science, some common examples include genomics and metabolomics.

This research focuses on biomolecules of specific functions or from specific species, however the vast number of molecules produced by our biology leads to massive datasets that tend to be hypothesis generating research rather than hypothesis driven research. What does this mean for the rest of us? It leads to unintended discoveries, answers to questions we didn’t know we had. Now that Taylor has returned to OSU and focusing on lipidomics, he has found as a potentially new detoxification pathway that has previously been unknown!

Tune in on tonight, June 5th at 7PM on 88.7FM or online to listen to us talk to the Roseburg-native Taylor Hughes about new understandings in how our bodies can remove toxic by-products.

Competing at a BBQ Cook-off fundraiser that raises money for Doernbecker's Children's hospital

Competing at a BBQ Cook-off fundraiser that raises money for Doernbecker’s Children’s hospital

Liver On The Edge

When thinking of the consequences of a diet high in fats, sugars, and cholesterol, many will think of weight gain and heart disease, but it may be the liver that suffers the most in the end. Non Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease (NAFLD) affects as many as 35% of Americans and is caused by fat abnormally being stored in the liver. This disease can lead to irreversible scarring, inflammation, cancer, and even liver failure.

Healthy Mouse Liver

Healthy Mouse Liver

Currently, there is no known cure, but Kelli Lytle, RD, a Ph. D. student of Donald Jump in the department of Nutrition is looking for an answer; not with drugs, but with diet. If we change our diet to one that is low in fats, sugars, and cholesterol, can we nurse our livers back to health? By using a two-pronged approach with a mouse model and a cell culture model, she can better understand not only if restoration is possible, but how it works.

Diseased Mouse Liver. White circles indicate pockets of fat

Diseased Mouse Liver. White circles are pockets of fat

In this episode of our show, we will find out how Kelli found her passion for nutrition. We follow her journey from her beginnings studying Art History in Portland Community College, to becoming a registered dietician, and on to her five years at Oregon State University where she has not only published her work, but also communicated it to broad audiences in the three minute thesis competition.

So, tune in to hear Kelli’s passion for Science, Nutrition, and Science Communication on Sunday, January 31st at 7PM PST on 88.7FM or stream it live at http://kbvr.com/listen.

Photo credit: Kelli Lytle