A feature video produced by UChicago Creative’s Anthony Penta has won a 2016 Chicago/Midwest Region Emmy for Outstanding Achievement for Informational/Instructional Programming. The segment looks at the work of Cliff Ragsdale, PhD, professor of neurobiology, and graduate students Carrie Albertin and Yan Wang as they study one of the weirdest and most amazing creatures on the planet.
In 2015, Ragsdale and his team sequenced the genome of the California two-spot octopus (Octopus bimaculoides), the first cephalopod ever to be fully sequenced. They found striking differences from other invertebrates, including a dramatic expansion of a gene family involved in nervous system development that was once thought to be unique to vertebrates. At the time, Ragsdale said, “The late British zoologist Martin Wells said the octopus is an alien. In this sense, then, our paper describes the first sequenced genome from an alien.”
UChicago Creative is part of UChicago’s Communications office, serving as an on-campus multimedia and creative agency. The award-winning video was one of their Producer Pilot Projects, which allows staff producers to explore creative work outside of their day-to-day client assignments.