blog postsElectrostatic force takes charge in bioinspired polymersNov 2, 2017 7:00 am869 views Researchers at the University of Illinois and the University of Massachusetts, Amherst have taken the first steps toward gaining control over the self-assembly of synthetic materials in the same way that biology forms natural polymers. This advance could prove useful in designing new bioinspired, smart materials for applications ranging from drug delivery to sensing to remediation of environmental contaminants.From pythons and ferrets to coughing parrots: Adventures in exotic animal medicineNov 1, 2017 8:15 am298 views Working with exotic animals in the Small Animal Clinic involves a lot of thinking on my feet. Each type of animal comes with unique needs and challenges. Parrots often have nutritional deficiencies and, like humans, can develop atherosclerosis – the result of a poor diet and too much sedentary time. (We sometimes refer to them as “perch potatoes.”) Reptiles and mammals tend to develop fungal infections on their skin. Birds, snakes and mammals need stimulation and like to explore – with sometimes tragic results.Researchers look to patterns to envision new engineering fieldOct 26, 2017 8:00 am1097 views The phenomenon that forms interference patterns on television displays when a camera focuses on a pattern like a person wearing stripes has inspired a new way to conceptualize electronic devices. Researchers at the University of Illinois are showing how the atomic-scale version of this phenomenon may hold the secrets to help advance electronics design to the limits of size and speed. Stemlike cells at tumor perimeter promote new blood vessels to feed tumor growthOct 25, 2017 1:00 pm644 views Stemlike cells at the edge of melanoma tumors secrete factors to promote blood-vessel growth, allowing the cancer to grow and spread.Events explore how technology, creativity interact to imagine the futureOct 25, 2017 8:45 am598 views A series of events at the University of Illinois called Speculative Futures will bring artists together with technology innovators with the goal of sparking new creative projects at the intersection of computer science and science fiction.Education Justice Project receives $1 million Mellon grantOct 24, 2017 11:30 am708 views The Education Justice Project at the University of Illinois is expanding its academic programs for men in prison with the support of a three-year, $1 million grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.Serpents of the BadlandsOct 24, 2017 9:45 am397 views Tchk-tchk-tchktchk I stop dead in my tracks. Despite the howling prairie winds, that unmistakable sound cuts through the bluster and into my ears. My eyes search the ground, scanning through the prairie grasses, yucca, scoria and prickly pear. Nothing.Scientists: Expanding Brazilian sugarcane could dent global CO2 emissionsOct 23, 2017 9:45 am1433 views Vastly expanding sugarcane production in Brazil for conversion to ethanol could reduce current global carbon dioxide emissions by as much as 5.6 percent, researchers report in the journal Nature Climate Change.Illinois scientist named Packard FellowOct 18, 2017 12:30 pm1943 views Pinshane Huang, a professor of materials science and engineering at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, is among 18 early career researchers to receive 2017 Packard Fellowships from the David and Lucile Packard Foundation.Illinois sportfish recovery a result of 1972 Clean Water Act, scientists reportOct 18, 2017 9:45 am1819 views Populations of largemouth bass, bluegill, catfish and other sportfish are at the highest levels recorded in more than a century in the Illinois River, according to a new report. Their dramatic recovery, from populations close to zero near Chicago throughout much of the 20th century, began just after implementation of the Clean Water Act, the researchers say.One lucky dogOct 16, 2017 9:00 am707 views The first time we see Elliot, he has a fractured jaw and a bad prognosis. He is a senior rescue dog. The family has only had him for a couple of years, but their 16-year-old daughter has given him his own tiny purple Mohawk hairdo. Clearly, he’s a keeper. The family isn’t sure how Elliot broke his jaw. They say maybe he took a spill off a table. But the dog has such severe dental disease that anything could have caused it.U. of I. nutrition scientist Sharon Donovan elected to National Academy of MedicineOct 16, 2017 9:00 am774 views Sharon M. Donovan, a professor of nutrition and the Melissa M. Noel Endowed Chair in Nutrition and Health at the University of Illinois, was elected today (Oct. 16) to the National Academy of Medicine.Report identifies factors associated with harassment, abuse in academic fieldworkOct 16, 2017 8:30 am1883 views College students considering careers in fields like archaeology or geology that require extensive work at remote field sites might want to find out how potential supervisors and advisers conduct themselves in the field. Do they establish clear ground rules for the behavior of everyone on the team? Are the rules consistently enforced? According to a new report, such factors likely influence whether students will witness or experience harassment while working far from home.Carle Illinois College of Medicine receives preliminary accreditationOct 16, 2017 12:00 am4186 views The Carle Illinois College of Medicine, the first engineering-based medical school, has received preliminary acreditation from the Liaison Committee on Medical Education and is recruiting students for its first class. Mantis shrimp-inspired camera enables glimpse into hidden worldOct 12, 2017 3:15 pm3973 views By mimicking the eye of the mantis shrimp, Illinois researchers have developed an ultra-sensitive camera capable of sensing both color and polarization. The bioinspired imager can potentially improve early cancer detection and help provide a new understanding of underwater phenomena, the researchers said.Researchers make headway in desalination technologyOct 12, 2017 2:00 pm667 views Engineers at the University of Illinois have taken a step forward in developing a saltwater desalination process that is potentially cheaper than reverse osmosis and borrows from battery technology. In their study, the researchers are focusing on new materials that could make desalination of brackish waters economically desirable and energy efficient.Cholesterol byproduct hijacks immune cells, lets breast cancer spreadOct 12, 2017 9:30 am899 views A cholesterol byproduct facilitates breast cancer’s spread by hijacking immune cells, a new University of Illinois study found.Prominent Japanese cultural figures to visit University of Illinois’ Japan HouseOct 12, 2017 9:30 am638 views Japan House at the University of Illinois will host two prominent cultural figures from Japan this month -- Senko Ikenobo, the first female headmaster designate of the Ikenobo Ikebana School of Floral Art, and bamboo artist Noboru Fujinuma, a Living National Treasure of Japan.Expert on pre-language communication to give annual Goldstick LectureOct 12, 2017 8:00 am207 views Nancy C. Brady, an expert on pre-language communication and language development in young children, will give the annual Goldstick Family Lecture in the Study of Communication Disorders at the University of Illinois.Some plants grow bigger – and meaner – when clipped, study findsOct 11, 2017 8:30 am3121 views Some plants behave like the mythical monster Hydra: Cut off their heads and they grow back, bigger and better than before. A new study finds that these “overcompensators,” as they are called, also augment their defensive chemistry – think plant venom – when they are clipped.Research looks at white working-class views on identity, race and immigrationOct 10, 2017 9:00 am1279 views A new research study presents a perspective on the social and political views of white working-class communities.New methods tackle a perplexing engineering conceptOct 9, 2017 2:00 pm1218 views Researchers at the University of Illinois are working to turn a complex materials design problem into an intuitive concept, understandable to engineers from novice to advanced experience levels. The group developed guidelines to help understand materials engineered to become thicker when stretched. This highly useful property, which is not commonly found in nature, has applications for protective sports equipment, body armor and biomedical devices.Healing Peter with T-shirts and silverOct 9, 2017 8:45 am392 views As a veterinary dermatologist, I see my share of unusual cases. I’ve treated a cheetah with dental disease, an itchy wallaroo, an alpaca with allergies and an alligator snapping turtle with an obstructed throat. But infections in dogs, cats and other critters can be among the most difficult conditions to treat.No ‘narcissism epidemic’ among college students, study findsOct 9, 2017 8:30 am4598 views Today’s college students are slightly less narcissistic than their counterparts were in the 1990s, researchers report in a new study – not significantly more, as some have proposed. The study, reported in the journal Psychological Science, analyzed data from 1,166 students at the University of California, Berkeley in the 1990s, and from tens of thousands of students at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and the University of California, Davis in the 2000s and 2010s. All of the students completed the Narcissism Personal Inventory, the oldest and most widely used measure of narcissism.To kick-start creativity, offer money, not plaudits, study findsOct 4, 2017 10:15 am756 views The best way to reward creativity is not with social-recognition awards such as plaques or other plaudits. According to published research co-written by Ravi Mehta, a professor of business administration at Illinois, it’s all about the money.Pay-it-forward college financing policies examined in new studyOct 4, 2017 8:30 am358 views Pay-it-forward college financing programs that enable students to pay tuition upon departure rather than entry may make college more accessible to greater numbers of students in the U.S., a new analysis suggests.Antibiotic-resistant infections in pets: What now?Oct 3, 2017 8:30 am1690 views Rates of antibiotic-resistant infections in companion animals are rising at an alarming rate. An Illinois veterinarian discusses what can be done about it.Tiny aquariums put nanoparticle self-assembly on displayOct 2, 2017 8:15 am1136 views Seeing is believing when it comes to nanoparticle self-assembly. A team of University of Illinois engineers is observing the interactions of colloidal gold nanoparticles inside tiny aquariumlike sample containers to gain more control over the self-assembly process of engineered materials.Large, crystalline lipid scaffolds bring new possibilities to protein, drug researchOct 2, 2017 8:00 am612 views Proteins and drugs are often attached to lipids to promote crystallization or ensure delivery to targeted tissues within the body, but only the smallest proteins and molecules fit within these fat structures. A new study reveals a lipid structure that can support much larger proteins and molecules than before, potentially increasing the variety of drugs that can be attached to these fat molecules.Mitzi and the giant hairballSep 29, 2017 8:30 am605 views Mitzi is a longtime survivor of lymphoma. It’s been five years since her last chemotherapy treatment, but she has been vomiting and her owners are afraid the cancer is back. Her stomach feels very weird – kind of doughy, like there is a big lump of bread in there. That’s not how tumors feel; tumors are usually firm. The X-rays reveal a mass, but it looks like strange material in her stomach. We decide to go in with an endoscope.Does President Trump’s tax reform plan add up?Sep 28, 2017 10:45 am601 views President Trump’s much-hyped tax overhaul plan is tantamount to a 'tax-reform wish list,' said Richard L. Kaplan, an internationally recognized expert on U.S. tax policyPaper: Don’t rely on mixed messages to change health behaviorsSep 27, 2017 9:00 am547 views Self-improvement messages to lose weight, quit smoking or eat more fruits and vegetables can fall on deaf ears if the intervention message is mixed, says new research from U. of I. psychology professor Dolores Albarracin.Allerton Music Barn Festival to feature music of Dizzy Gillespie, contemporary Broadway showSep 26, 2017 8:00 am403 views This fall’s Allerton Barn Music Festival will feature a tribute to Dizzy Gillespie and a production of the contemporary Broadway musical “[title of show].”Rare Book and Manuscript Library acquires papers of poet Haki Madhubuti and Third World PressSep 25, 2017 1:30 pm702 views The Rare Book and Manuscript Library at the University of Illinois has acquired a collection of papers from poet Haki Madhubuti and from the Third World Press/Third World Press Foundation in Chicago – the oldest independent black-owned publisher in the U.S.Click beetles inspire design of self-righting robotsSep 25, 2017 8:30 am2353 views Robots perform many tasks that humans can’t or don’t want to perform, getting around on intricately designed wheels and limbs. If they tip over, however, they are rendered almost useless. A team of University of Illinois mechanical engineers and entomologists are looking to click beetles, who can right themselves without the use of their legs, to solve this robotics challenge.Paper: Even after debunking, misinformation and ‘fake news’ persistSep 20, 2017 8:45 am1093 views Even in the face of evidence to the contrary, the effects of misinformation persist and can’t be wholly erased, says a new paper co-written by U. of I. psychology professor Dolores Albarracin.Beautiful MuskSep 18, 2017 8:30 am593 views One summer day, just outside of East St. Louis, I drove by a wheat field ready for harvest. The low afternoon light cast a beautiful glow, and I was struck by a lone thistle growing amidst the wheat. I stopped my university vehicle with the official state seal on the side, set up my tripod and was busy photographing. I stopped only when I heard an ominous double click to my right. I am not a hunter, but I knew the sound of the hammers being drawn back on a double-barreled shotgun.Changes in nonextreme precipitation may have not-so-subtle consequencesSep 18, 2017 7:45 am1013 views Major floods and droughts receive a lot of attention in the context of climate change, but University of Illinois researchers analyzed over five decades of precipitation data from North America to find that changes in nonextreme precipitation are more significant than previously realized and larger than those in extreme precipitation. These changes can have a strong effect on ecosystems, agriculture, infrastructure design and resource management, and point to a need to examine precipitation in a more nuanced, multifaceted way.Unique 1937 steel guitar to be demonstrated, displayed at ELLNORA guitar festivalSep 14, 2017 8:00 am456 views A one-of-a-kind electric console guitar created by steel guitar performer Letritia Kandle in the 1930s will be demonstrated and on display at ELLNORA: The Guitar Festival.Turkey tangoSep 12, 2017 8:30 am517 views During one late October visit to the Mermet Lake Conservation Area in southern Illinois, I noticed a shape approaching from the distance. The day was windy and wet, and my first thought was that a stray garbage can was rolling down the road. As we drove closer, the black-and-white blob resolved into a pair of yearling turkeys (called “jakes”) involved in a tussle.Pulitzer Prize-winning author to deliver Mortenson Distinguished LectureSep 11, 2017 9:00 am429 views Pulitzer Prize-winning author Viet Thanh Nguyen will talk about war, forced migration and refugees when he gives the 27th Annual Mortenson Distinguished Lecture at the University of Illinois.Congressional redistricting less contentious when resolved using computer algorithmSep 11, 2017 8:30 am2693 views Concerns that the process of U.S. congressional redistricting may be politically biased have fueled many debates, but a team of University of Illinois computer scientists and engineers has developed a new computer algorithm that may make the task easier for state legislatures and fairer for their constituents.Is our flood insurance model broken?Sep 8, 2017 8:30 am884 views Craig Lemoine, the director of the Financial Planning Program at the College of ACES, discusses the flood insurance market in light of Hurricane Harvey losses.Study: Biomarkers as predictive of sepsis as lengthy patient monitoringSep 7, 2017 8:15 am2384 views One measurement of key biomarkers in blood that characterize sepsis can give physicians as much information as hours of monitoring symptoms, a new study found.Nutrition has benefits for brain network organization, new research findsSep 7, 2017 8:00 am4220 views A new study found that monounsaturated fatty acids are linked to general intelligence and the organization of the brain’s attention network.Paper: Decision to claim Social Security benefits influenced by ‘framing’Sep 6, 2017 8:00 am860 views Retirees are more likely to delay claiming Social Security benefits by as many as 15 months due to how the decision is “framed” to them, says a new paper co-written by Jeffrey R. Brown, the Josef and Margot Lakonishok Professor of Business and dean of the College of Business at Illinois.Should states be in the lottery business?Sep 5, 2017 1:00 pm395 views A major downside to record-breaking lottery jackpots is that money flows from poorer communities into the hands of one incredibly lucky person, said Craig Lemoine, the director of the Financial Planning Program at the College of ACES.Vietnam War at 50: What has been the legacy of Agent Orange?Sep 5, 2017 11:30 am764 views A historian looks at the Vietnam War herbicide Agent Orange and how it changed ideas about war wounds and the cause of birth defects.Did news coverage turn Americans against the Vietnam War?Sep 5, 2017 11:30 am884 views News coverage of the Vietnam War did not have the effect on popular support that many believe, says a University of Illinois researcher. Book of essays considers how religions view other faithsSep 5, 2017 9:15 am499 views University of Illinois religion professor Robert McKim edited a new book, “Religious Perspectives on Religious Diversity,” that explores how members of various religions view those outside of their faiths.