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IT Sligo, Great Lakes Center Sign Memo of Understanding

Posted: July 7, 2011

To promote collaboration, the Great Lakes Center (GLC) at Buffalo State and the Institute of Technology in Sligo, Ireland (IT Sligo), recently signed a memo of understanding.

“They are interested in working with us because of their problems with invasive species in their waterways,” said Alexander Y. Karatayev, director of the GLC. Karatayev and Lyubov Burlakova, a research scientist with the GLC, who are international experts in the spread of aquatic invasive species, have collaborated with scientists in Ireland.

In 2007, Karatayev was the lead author of an article that linked the spread of invasive aquatic species to “the globalization of economies and trade.” That seems to be the situation in Ireland. “Since Ireland joined the EU, and its international trade has increased, invasive species introductions have increased, too,” he said.

He cited Corbicula fluminea, a clam native to Asia, as an example. “It was found in the United States in 1938, and in the 1990s in South America,” said Karatayev. “It was found in Ireland just two years ago.” Some factors such as water temperature, pH, and the level of calcium may affect the spread of Corbicula in Ireland.

Thanks to the MOU, faculty members from IT Sligo will be able to visit Buffalo State to conduct research with scientists and faculty members at the Great Lakes Center. “They are very interested in the resources of our field station,” said Karatayev, “and we are very interested in the opportunity to collaborate with them. We hope that, in the near future, we will be able to develop international courses for Buffalo State students and IT Sligo students, too.”

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