blog postsLife SciencesSocial SciencesStudy links nutrition to brain health and cognitive agingSep 28, 2016 9:00 am588 views A new study of older adults finds an association between higher blood levels of phosphatidylcholine, a source of the dietary nutrient choline, and the ability to regulate attention to manage competing tasks. The study also identified a brain structure that appears to play a role in this association.Expert ViewpointsEngineeringLife SciencesPhysical SciencesIs Academia Waking Up to the Problem of Sexual Harassment?Sep 19, 2016 2:15 pm3227 views U. of I. anthropology professor Kathryn Clancy supports a federal legislative effort that would require universities to report – and federal funding agencies to consider – findings that any university professor engaged in discrimination on the basis of sex. AgricultureLife SciencesIllinois growers are running out of options in fight against waterhempSep 14, 2016 8:00 am836 views Resistance to multiple herbicides is the new norm for populations of waterhemp, a common agricultural weed. With their herbicide options dwindling and nothing new on the horizon, Illinois growers must be strategic in how they manage waterhemp-infested fields, says a University of Illinois expert on crop weed management.BusinessLife Sciences‘Sleeper effect’ accounts for durability of weak messages from credible sourcesSep 13, 2016 8:45 am952 views The least convincing arguments can reverberate in the public consciousness over time – provided they’re delivered by a credible source, says new research from U. of I. psychology professor Dolores Albarracin.HealthLife SciencesScientists identify genes that disrupt response to breast cancer treatmentSep 7, 2016 9:45 am1807 views Scientists at the University of Illinois may have unlocked the genetic code that determines why many patients with estrogen receptor-positive breast cancer fail to respond to the widely used drug tamoxifen.AgricultureLife SciencesStudy: Future drought will offset benefits of higher CO2 on soybean yieldsSep 5, 2016 10:00 am906 views An eight-year study of soybeans grown outdoors in a carbon dioxide-rich atmosphere like that expected by 2050 has yielded a new and worrisome finding: Higher atmospheric CO2 concentrations will boost plant growth under ideal growing conditions, but drought – expected to worsen as the climate warms and rainfall patterns change – will outweigh those benefits and cause yield losses much sooner than anticipated.Life SciencesEngineeringPhysical SciencesForce triggers gene expression by stretching chromatinAug 22, 2016 10:00 am1196 views A new study by University of Illinois researchers and collaborators in China has demonstrated that external mechanical force can directly regulate gene expression.Life SciencesStudy confirms long-term effects of ‘chemobrain’ in miceAug 17, 2016 3:15 pm1206 views Women undergoing chemotherapy for breast cancer have long complained of lingering cognitive impairments after treatment. These effects are referred to as "chemobrain," a feeling of mental fogginess. A new study from the University of Illinois reports long-lasting cognitive impairments in mice when they are administered a chemotherapy regimen used to treat breast cancer in humans.Life SciencesEngineeringPhysical SciencesGenome-editing proteins ride a DNA zip lineAug 15, 2016 1:30 pm884 views For gene-editing proteins to be useful in clinical applications, they need to be able to find the specific site they’re supposed to edit among billions of DNA sequences. Using advanced imaging techniques, University of Illinois researchers have found that one class of genome-editing proteins rapidly travels along a strand of DNA like a rider on a zip line – a unique behavior among documented DNA-binding proteins.HealthLife SciencesReport: People buy most of their junk food at the supermarketAug 9, 2016 9:15 am1023 views An analysis of a nationally representative sample of U.S. adults reveals that access to healthy foods in a supermarket does not hinder Americans’ consumption of empty calories. In fact, the study found, U.S. adults buy the bulk of their sugar-sweetened beverages and nutrient-poor discretionary foods at supermarkets and grocery stores. The findings challenge the "food desert" hypothesis.Life SciencesAncient bones, teeth, tell story of strife at CahokiaAug 4, 2016 10:45 am1588 views Dozens of people buried in mass graves in an ancient mound in Cahokia, a pre-Columbian city in Illinois near present-day St. Louis, likely lived in or near Cahokia most of their lives, researchers report in the American Journal of Physical Anthropology. Life SciencesFresh look at burials, mass graves, tells a new story of CahokiaAug 4, 2016 10:30 am1957 views A new study challenges earlier interpretations of an important burial mound at Cahokia, a pre-Columbian city in Illinois near present-day St. Louis. The study reveals that a central feature of the mound, a plot known as the “beaded burial,” is not a monument to male power, as was previously thought, but includes both males and females of high status.Life SciencesPhysical SciencesIron catalysts can modify amino acids, peptides to create new drug candidatesAug 1, 2016 9:45 am491 views For medicinal chemists, making tweaks to peptide structures is key to developing new drug candidates. Now, researchers have demonstrated that two iron-containing small-molecule catalysts can help turn certain types of amino acids – the building blocks of peptides and proteins – into an array of potential new forms, even when part of a larger peptide, while preserving a crucial aspect of their chemistry: chirality, or “handedness.”HealthLife SciencesVeterinary MedicineScientists test nanoparticle drug delivery in dogs with osteosarcomaJul 25, 2016 2:00 pm3525 views At the University of Illinois, an engineer teamed up with a veterinarian to test a bone cancer drug delivery system in animals bigger than the standard animal model, the mouse. They chose dogs – mammals closer in size and biology to humans – with naturally occurring bone cancers, which also are a lot like human bone tumors.AgricultureEngineeringLife SciencesPhysical SciencesMeasure of age in soil nitrogen could help precision agricultureJul 25, 2016 8:00 am1520 views University of Illinois engineers developed a model to calculate the age of nitrogen in corn and soybean fields, which could lead to improved fertilizer application techniques to promote crop growth while reducing leaching.Life SciencesScientists watch as water fleas take over new territoryJul 19, 2016 9:15 am617 views Look into any nutrient-rich pond almost anywhere in the world and you will find Daphnia pulex, a tiny crustacean (also called a water flea) that is a source of food for fish and fascination for scientists. A new study, reported in the journal Molecular Ecology, offers insights into this creature’s ability to disperse and its remarkable success in the wild.Life SciencesPap screenings linked to less cervical cancer in elderly womenJul 7, 2016 7:15 am626 views A new study from the University of Illinois confirms a link between routine Pap smear screenings and a lower risk of developing cervical cancer in women over age 65. However, most American health guidelines discourage women in that age range from receiving screenings unless they have pre-existing risk factors.Life SciencesSocial SciencesStudy: How we explain things influences what we think is rightJul 5, 2016 9:00 am1118 views New research focuses on a fundamental human habit: When trying to explain something (why people give roses for Valentine’s Day, for example), we often focus on the traits of the thing itself (roses are pretty) and not its context (advertisers promote roses). In a new study, researchers found that people who tend to focus on “inherent traits” and ignore context also are more likely to assume that the patterns they see around them are good.HealthLife SciencesVeterinary MedicineReport: A host of common chemicals endanger child brain developmentJul 1, 2016 9:15 am2715 views In a new report, dozens of scientists, health practitioners and children’s health advocates are calling for renewed attention to the growing evidence that many common and widely available chemicals endanger neurodevelopment in fetuses and children of all ages.EducationLife SciencesVeterinary MedicineWith online games, high school students learn how to rein in disease outbreaksJun 27, 2016 11:00 am709 views High school students investigate Ebola-like outbreaks and administer vaccines through Outbreak!, a new summer course at Illinois that uses online games to encourage critical thinking about fighting infectious diseases. Life SciencesHealthStudy finds brain markers of numeric, verbal and spatial reasoning abilitiesJun 20, 2016 10:00 am1292 views A new study begins to clarify how brain structure and chemistry give rise to specific aspects of what researchers call “fluid intelligence,” the ability to adapt to new situations and to solve problems one has never encountered before.Expert ViewpointsLife SciencesVeterinary MedicineWhen veterinarians become crime scene investigatorsJun 17, 2016 1:45 pm592 views A Minute With...™ veterinary diagnostic laboratory professor Adam SternLife SciencesCurrent diversity pattern of North American mammals a ‘recent’ trend, study findsJun 13, 2016 2:00 pm556 views CHAMPAIGN, Ill. — It’s called the latitudinal diversity gradient, a phenomenon seen today in most plant and animal species around the world: Biodiversity decreases from the equator to higher latitudes. A new study of fossils representing 63 million of the past 65 million years reveals that – for North American mammals, at least – the modern LDG is the exception rather than the rule. HealthBusinessLife SciencesVeterinary MedicineHuman trials of cancer drug PAC-1 continue with new investmentMay 24, 2016 1:45 pm2714 views Clinical trials of the anti-cancer agent PAC-1 are continuing to expand, thanks to a $7 million angel investment from an anonymous contributor who originally invested $4 million to help get the compound this far in the drug-approval pipeline.Expert ViewpointsLife SciencesWhy America's aging population needs to think about preventing fallsMay 23, 2016 3:45 pm540 views A Minute With...™ Jacob Sosnoff, professor of kinesiology and community healthLife SciencesStudy links parental depression to brain changes and risk-taking in adolescentsMay 10, 2016 3:15 pm865 views A new study concludes that parental depression contributes to greater brain activity in areas linked to risk taking in adolescent children, likely leading to more risk-taking and rule-breaking behaviors. While previous research has found associations between clinically depressed parents and their teenagers’ risk taking, the new study is the first to find corresponding changes in the adolescents’ brains.CampusHumanitiesLife SciencesPhysical SciencesSocial SciencesSix Illinois professors named Guggenheim FellowsMay 2, 2016 12:15 pm2502 views Six professors at the University of Illinois have been named 2016 Guggenheim Fellows, bringing to 13 the number of U. of I. faculty members who have been honored with the fellowship over the last three years. This year’s fellows are Dennis Baron, Karin A. Dahmen, Craig Koslofsky, Mei-Po Kwan, Ralph W. Mathisen and Rebecca Stumpf.HealthLife SciencesFaith-based health promotion program successful with older Latinas, study findsApr 27, 2016 1:15 pm758 views A culturally sensitive lifestyle intervention showed promise at motivating Latinas living in the U.S. to eat better and exercise more by connecting healthy-living behaviors with the lives of saints and prominent religious figures, a new study by University of Illinois kinesiology and community health professor Andiara Schwingel indicates.HealthEngineeringLife SciencesPhysical SciencesVeterinary MedicineShape of tumor may affect whether cells can metastasizeApr 27, 2016 10:45 am2243 views Only a few cells in a cancerous tumor are able to break away and spread to other parts of the body, but the curve along the edge of the tumor may play a large role in activating these tumor-seeding cells, according to a new University of Illinois study.Life SciencesResearcher studies how animals puncture thingsApr 22, 2016 8:15 am447 views If shooting arrows from a crossbow into cubes of ballistics gelatin doesn’t sound like biological science to you, you’ve got a lot to learn from University of Illinois animal biology professor Philip Anderson, who did just that to answer a fundamental question about how animals use their fangs, claws and tentacles to puncture other animals.AgricultureLife SciencesU. of I. alumna Temple Grandin elected to the American Academy of Arts and SciencesApr 21, 2016 9:30 am1894 views Temple Grandin, a University of Illinois alumna and a professor of animal sciences at Colorado State University, has been elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.Life SciencesVocal signals reveal intent to dominate or submit, study findsApr 18, 2016 9:30 am858 views You may not win friends, but a new study finds that you can influence people simply by lowering the pitch of your voice in the first moments of a conversation.Veterinary MedicineLife SciencesStudy links fetal and newborn dolphin deaths to Deepwater Horizon oil spillApr 12, 2016 8:30 am710 views Scientists have finalized a five-year study of newborn and fetal dolphins found stranded on beaches in the northern Gulf of Mexico between 2010 and 2013. Their study, reported in the journal Diseases of Aquatic Organisms, identified substantial differences between fetal and newborn dolphins found stranded inside and outside the areas affected by the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill.Life SciencesAgricultureStudy suggests commercial bumble bee industry amplified a fungal pathogen of beesApr 4, 2016 2:00 pm1613 views Scientists hoping to explain widespread declines in wild bumble bee populations have conducted the first long-term genetic study of Nosema bombi, a key fungal pathogen of honey bees and bumble bees. Their study found that Nosema infections in large-scale commercial bumble bee pollination operations coincided with infections and declines in wild bumble bees.Life SciencesSocial SciencesRat study reveals long-term effects of adolescent amphetamine abuse on the brainMar 30, 2016 9:15 am872 views A study of rats given regular, high doses of amphetamine finds that those exposed to the drug at an age corresponding to human adolescence experience long-term changes in brain function that persist into adulthood.HealthLife SciencesParents’ binge eating, restrictive feeding practices may be reactions to children’s emotionsMar 30, 2016 9:00 am1054 views A new study of more than 440 parents and their preschoolers offers insight into why some parents who binge eat also may try to restrict their children’s food intake, placing their children at higher risk for unhealthy eating habits and weight problems.HealthLife SciencesPhysical SciencesStructure of protein that forms fibrils in Parkinson's patients could lead to new diagnostic and treatment optionsMar 28, 2016 10:15 am951 views Chemists have identified the complex chemical structure of the protein that stacks together to form fibrils in the brains of Parkinson’s disease patients. Armed with this knowledge, researchers can identify specific targets for diagnosis and treatment.HealthLife SciencesTreating withdrawal symptoms could help cannabis users quit, study findsMar 23, 2016 8:00 am812 views Heavy users of cannabis who experience withdrawal symptoms such as nervousness and cravings when they quit are likely to use again sooner than their peers, a new study finds.HealthLife SciencesStudy: Brain metabolism predicts fluid intelligence in young adultsMar 22, 2016 12:30 pm159 views A healthy brain is critical to a person's cognitive abilities, but measuring brain health can be a complicated endeavor. A new study reports that healthy brain metabolism corresponds with fluid intelligence – a measure of one's ability to solve unusual or complex problems – in young adults.Physical SciencesLife SciencesDNA molecules directly interact with each other based on sequence, study findsMar 22, 2016 11:00 am1142 views Proteins play a large role in DNA regulation, but a new study finds that DNA molecules directly interact with one another in a way that’s dependent on the sequence of the DNA and epigenetic factors. This could have implications for how DNA is organized in the cell and even how genes are regulated in different cell types, the researchers say.Physical SciencesLife SciencesIllinois scientists dig deeper to build a better permafrost modelMar 15, 2016 9:30 am396 views Scientists report they have found a way to improve predictions of permafrost area and stability in the northern high latitudes. Their improved model finds that the rate of permafrost decline in recent decades is slower than previously thought.EngineeringLife SciencesPhysical SciencesLight illuminates the way for bio-botsMar 14, 2016 2:00 pm2259 views A new class of miniature biological robots, or bio-bots, has seen the light – and is following where the light shines.Life SciencesPhysical SciencesStudy offers clearest picture yet of how HIV defeats a cellular defenderMar 4, 2016 8:30 am2854 views A new study offers the first atomic-scale view of an interaction between the HIV capsid - the protein coat that shepherds HIV into the nucleus of human cells - and a host protein known as cyclophilin A. This interaction is key to HIV infection, researchers say.Social SciencesLife SciencesBlack and brilliant? A female genius? Not according to RateMyProfessors, study findsMar 3, 2016 1:00 pm528 views An analysis of more than 14 million reviews on RateMyProfessors.com, where students write anonymous reviews of their professors, found that students most often use the words “brilliant” and “genius” to describe male professors and in academic disciplines in which women and African-Americans are underrepresented.Life SciencesStudy links mobile device addiction to depression and anxietyMar 2, 2016 9:30 am17416 views Is cellphone use detrimental to mental health? A new study from the University of Illinois finds that high engagement with mobile technology is linked to anxiety and depression in college-age students.HealthLife SciencesDrinking more water associated with numerous dietary benefits, study findsFeb 29, 2016 2:15 pm5204 views In a new study of more than 18,300 U.S. adults, U. of I. researcher Ruopeng An found the majority of people who increased their consumption of plain water reduced their total daily calorie intake as well as their consumption of saturated fat, sugar, sodium and cholesterol.Life SciencesStudy: Researchers identify how mental abilities are shaped by individual differences in the brainFeb 25, 2016 9:15 am2078 views Everyone has a different mixture of personality traits: some are outgoing, some are tough and some are anxious. A new study suggests that brains also have different traits that affect both anatomical and cognitive factors, such as intelligence and memory.Physical SciencesLife SciencesFive Illinois faculty members named Sloan Research FellowsFeb 23, 2016 9:15 am1793 views Five University of Illinois faculty members received the 2016 Sloan Research Fellowship from the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation.Life SciencesFungi are at the root of tropical forest diversity – or lack thereof, study findsFeb 22, 2016 12:30 pm889 views The types of beneficial fungi that associate with tree roots can alter the fate of a patch of tropical forest, boosting plant diversity or, conversely, giving one tree species a distinct advantage over many others, researchers report. Life SciencesArtsInsects explode onscreen at this year’s Insect Fear Film Festival – and in real lifeFeb 22, 2016 11:45 am746 views Insects that explode or start fires are a great plot device in a horror film, but they also have (almost) real-life counterparts. "Exploding Arthropods” is the theme for the 2016 Insect Fear Film Festival on Feb. 27 at the University of Illinois.