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Biological Sciences’ Research Facilities and Core Equipment

Harned Hall houses the Department of Biological Sciences and provides space for faculty, staff, and graduate student offices, research facilities, and teaching. The Undergraduate Advising Office is located in Harned 117 and the main departmental office is located in Harned 218. The historical portion of Harned Hall was recently renovated, providing modern research labs, communal lab spaces, office space, and lecture rooms for teaching. A new greenhouse was also added behind Harned Hall. The Annex adjoins Harned Hall and contains additional space for research, teaching labs, and an animal facility. An Academic Computing Lab is available outside of Harned Hall and is used extensively in Biology courses for digital lab activities. In addition to our in-house facilities, the Biology faculty has connections to numerous centers, institutes, and other departments across campus and throughout Mississippi, thereby broadening the potential for collaborations in research and use of cutting-edge technologies and novel data sources. More details on these resources and some of our on-going collaborations across campus and Mississippi are detailed below.

Harned Hall

Harned Hall recently underwent a major renovation that included the renovation of eight large, shared lab spaces and four smaller communal lab spaces. Each of the eight research labs spans approx. 1550 sq. ft. and houses two PIs. Each was designed to accommodate the bench space needs of up to 15 people. Standard new equipment in each lab includes 6-ft. biosafety cabinet, 23 cu. ft. ultra-low freezer, 6-ft. fume hood, corrosive cabinet, vacuum cabinets, multiple sinks and a Millipore ultrapure water purification system. All labs were built with the potential to meet all BSL2 safety requirements.

The Harned Hall renovation project also included the design of four smaller common research labs (1319 total sq. ft.) that contain new and/or upgraded equipment. These facilities can be used by any departmental faculty member. Equipment includes:

  1. Applied Biosystems real-time thermocycler (StepOnePlus)
  2. Sorvall ultracentrifuge (WX 80)
  3. Sorvall centrifuge (RC-6 Plus)
  4. Eppendorf tabletop centrifuge (5810R)
  5. Zeiss fluorescence microscope with camera
  6. EVOS inverted fluorescence microscope plus camera system
  7. BioTek Powerwave spectrophotometer/incubator
  8. BioTek SymergyHT fluorescence plate reader
  9. BioTek Take3 (similar to nanodrop)
  10. BioDoc-It gel imaging system with printer
  11. Speedvac concentrator system
  12. Percival growth chambers (2)
  13. Storm PhosporImager (updated software and screens)
  14. X-ray film processor (existing)
  15. Autoclaves (3)

The department also provides financial support to the Department of Basic Sciences for the upkeep of their FACSCalibur, a flow cytometry instrument, which our faculty members have access to.

Harned Hall Annex

The Annex adjoins Harned Hall but did not undergo renovation. Seven labs and support space totaling 8350 sq. ft. will be used to fulfill teaching lab commitments, but research space also co-exists within the Annex. Six labs (6700 sq. ft.) plus support space (1500 sq. ft.) are committed to expanding our current and future research capabilities.

Harned Hall Annex had an AAALAC-accredited animal facility that went off-line due to the renovation, but this 2,400 sq. ft. mouse facility will be back in operation later in 2013. This facility falls under the College of Veterinary Medicine’s (CVM) AAALAC accreditation; it contains a new Lynx cage washer that was purchased as part of the Harned Hall renovation project and separate, dedicated HVAC system. Additional animal space is located at the CVM complex on campus.

Academic Computer Lab (ACL)

Two computer labs (50-station and 32-station) are housed in the Academic Computer Lab (1700 sq. ft.), a facility co-shared by the department and Information Technology Services (ITS). It has been in operation since 2009. This facility is primarily used for instruction during the day and is open for use as common computer labs during evening hours.

Other Resources at MSU and Across Mississippi:

Department of Basic Sciences

  • Justin Thornton - Biophysical and Biochemical Characterization of Molecular Host-Pathogen Interactions
  • Justin Thornton - Using LCM to Assess Differential Gene Expression in Host Tissues following Bacterial Challenge
  • Job Lopez - Development of Animal Models to Study Pathogen-Host Interactions

Department of Biochemistry, Molecular Biology, Entomology, and Plant Pathology

Department of Chemistry

  • Justin Thornton - Biophysical and Biochemical Characterization of Molecular Host-Pathogen Interactions
  • Job Lopez - Biochemical Characterization of Tick-Borne Pathogens

Geosystems Research Institute

The GRI provides geospatial technologies in remote sensing computational technologies, visualization techniques, agriculture and natural resource management. Associates of the GRI have access to the High Performance Computing Collaboratory.

Mississippi Museum of Natural Science

The MMNS is an educational and scientific resource that maintains a variety of research collections and oversees the Natural Heritage Program for Mississippi.

Northern Gulf Institute

The NGI is a National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Cooperative Institute that fosters integrated research and resource and management applications relevant to the Northern Gulf of Mexico. Other partner institutions include the University of Southern Mississippi, Louisiana State University, Florida State University, and the Dauphin Island Sea Lab. Associates of the NGI have access to the High Performance Computing Collaboratory.

Center for Computational Sciences

The CCS provides access to the supercomputing facilities and expertise across science, math, and computer science departments. Associates of the CCS have access to the High Performance Computing Collaboratory.

Institute for Genomics, Biocomputing & Biotechnology

The IGBB houses cutting-edge genomics, proteomics, and high performance biocomputing resources. Associates of the IGBB have access to the High Performance Computing Collaboratory.

Institute for Imaging and Analytical Technologies

The I2AT houses major research instrumentation and trained personnel for microscopy (light, confocal, atomic force, and electron), microanalysis (e.g. X-ray diffraction), and MRI applications.