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  • Fred Kummerow, a professor of comparative biosciences at the University of Illinois, reports that LDL cholesterol results from a simple dietary deficiency.

    'Bad cholesterol' indicates an amino acid deficiency, researcher says

    CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Low-density lipoprotein (LDL), the "bad cholesterol" that doctors consider a sign of potential heart disease, is merely a marker of a diet lacking all of the essential amino acids, says University of Illinois comparative biosciences professor Fred Kummerow, 99, a longtime opponent of the medical establishment's war on cholesterol.

  • Illinois physics professor and Nobel Laureate Anthony Leggett talks about the 1938 discovery of superfluidity and its significance to low-temperature physics.

    Superfluidity: what is it and why does it matter?

    2018 marks the 80th anniversary of the landmark physics discovery of superfluidity. News Bureau physical sciences editor Lois Yoksoulian asked University of Illinois physics professor and 2003 Nobel Prize winner Anthony Leggett about the significance of the historic finding.

  • Jacob Allen, left, Jeffrey Woods and their colleagues found that exercise alters the microbial composition of the gut in potentially beneficial ways.

    Exercise changes gut microbial composition independent of diet, team reports

    Two studies – one in mice and the other in human subjects – offer the first definitive evidence that exercise alone can change the composition of microbes in the gut. The studies were designed to isolate exercise-induced changes from other factors – such as diet or antibiotic use – that might alter the intestinal microbiota.

  • Three U. of I. professors are recipients of Alfred P. Sloan Research Fellowships this year.

    Three Illinois professors named Sloan Research Fellows

    Three Illinois scientists are among 126 recipients of the 2018 Sloan Research Fellowships from the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation. According to the foundation, the awards “honor early career scholars whose achievements mark them as among the very best scientific minds working today.” Winners receive a two-year $65,000 fellowship to further their research.

  • Researchers Christopher Lehmann, left, and David Gay completed a 25-year study of acidic pollutants in rainwater collected across the U.S. and found that both frequency and concentration of acid rainfall has decreased.

    Long-term study shows acid pollution in rain decreases with emissions

    CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Emissions regulations do have an environmental impact, according to a long-term study of acidic rainfall by researchers at the University of Illinois.

  • U. of I. veterinary clinical medicine professors Ashley Mitek and Jim Lowe discuss the traits of viruses that can be transmitted between animals and humans.

    Veterinary infectious disease expert weighs in on coronavirus threat

    Influenza, SARS and COVID-19 are all zoonotic diseases, readily transmitted from animals to humans. The viruses that cause these diseases also share traits that allow them to quickly mutate, infect widely and spread around the world.

    In a new podcast, a veterinarian and expert in zoonotic diseases offers insights into the special characteristics of the new coronavirus that make it more like influenza and less like SARS or the virus that causes the especially lethal Middle Eastern Respiratory Syndrome.

  • University of Illinois physics professor Mats Selen was awarded a national Professor of the Year award from the Council for Advancement and Support of Education and the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching.

    Illinois physics professor named national Professor of the Year

    Mats Selen, professor of physics at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, has been named Outstanding Doctoral and Research Universities Professor of the Year by the Council for Advancement and Support of Education and the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching.

  • Neuroscience graduate student Sara Schmidt and speech and hearing science professor Fatima Husain conducted a study that found that tinnitus patients have differences in the region of the brain called the precuneus, which cause the brain to stay more at attention and be less at rest.

    Ringing in ears keeps brain more at attention, less at rest, study finds

    Tinnitus, a chronic ringing or buzzing in the ears, has eluded medical treatment and scientific understanding. A new study by University of Illinois researchers found that chronic tinnitus is associated with changes in certain networks in the brain, and furthermore, those changes cause the brain to stay more at attention and less at rest.

  • Sociology professor Tom VanHeuvelen focuses on the rise in inequality as a key part of his research.

    Study shows diminished but ‘robust’ link between union decline, rise of inequality

    A new study shows a diminished but “robust” link between the decline of unions and the rise in wage inequality.

  • Plant biology professor Donald Ort is one of seven U. of I. researchers on the Thomson Reuters Highly Cited Researchers list for 2015.

    Seven Illinois researchers rank among the world’s most influential

    Seven University of Illinois researchers have been named to the Thomson Reuters Highly Cited Researchers list for 2015. The list includes “some of the world’s most influential scientific minds,” according to a statement from Thomson Reuters.

  • Illinois professor Narayana Aluru led a team that found that tiny pores in thin sheets of the material molybdenum disulfide could be very good at removing salt from seawater to yield drinkable water.

    Nanopores could take the salt out of seawater

    University of Illinois engineers have found an energy-efficient material for removing salt from seawater that could provide a rebuttal to poet Samuel Taylor Coleridge’s lament, “Water, water, every where, nor any drop to drink.”

  • Photo of Lauren R. Aronson, an associate clinical professor of law and the director of the Immigration Law Clinic at the U. of I. College of Law.

    Can Biden pass comprehensive immigration reform?

    One of the Biden administration’s first acts was to send Congress the U.S. Citizenship Act of 2021, a long-promised immigration reform bill. But any legislative action on comprehensive immigration reform will face significant headwinds in the Senate, says Lauren R. Aronson, an associate clinical professor of law and the director of the Immigration Law Clinic at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign College of Law.

  • Li selected as dean and chief academic officer of Carle Illinois College of Medicine

    Dr. King Li, a renowned researcher, educator, inventor and clinician in molecular imaging and radiology, will become the inaugural dean and chief academic officer of the Carle Illinois College of Medicine effective Oct. 1. 

  • Pollinator habitat program spreads bad seeds with the good

    Weed scientists in at least two Midwestern states have been reporting for years that a conservation program meant to provide habitat for pollinating insects is sowing bad seeds – including seeds of the potentially devastating agricultural weed Palmer amaranth – along with the good. Now, researchers at the University of Illinois have traced the weed seeds to at least one source: pollinator habitat seed sold by a company in the Midwest.

  • Aerial view of the U. of I. campus.

    U of I to lead two of seven new national artificial intelligence institutes

    The National Science Foundation and the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture are announcing an investment of more than $140 million to establish seven artificial intelligence institutes in the U.S. Two of the seven will be led by teams at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign.

    The USDA-NIFA will fund the AI Institute for Future Agricultural Resilience, Management and Sustainability at the U. of I. Illinois computer science professor Vikram Adve will lead the AIFARMS Institute.

    The NSF will fund the AI Institute for Molecular Discovery, Synthetic Strategy and Manufacturing, also known as the Molecule Maker Lab Institute. Huimin Zhao, a U. of I. professor of chemical and biomolecular engineering and of chemistry, will lead this institute.

  • A new study co-written by Gloriana Gonzlez, an expert in math education at Illinois, suggests the students who used dynamic geometry software were more successful in discovering new mathematical ideas than when they used static, paper-based diagrams.

    Adding technology to geometry class improves opportunities to learn

    CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - A new study co-written by a University of Illinois expert in math education suggests that incorporating technology in high school-level geometry classes not only makes the teaching of concepts such as congruency easier, it also empowers students to discover other geometric relationships they wouldn't ordinarily uncover when more traditional methods of instruction were used.

  • Photo of Michael LeRoy, an expert in labor law and labor relations at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign.

    Can employers legally require employees to vaccinate against COVID-19?

    In most cases, an employer could require an employee to receive a COVID-19 vaccination. While that might seem like a violation of an employee’s personal freedom, “No one has a legally enforceable right to a specific job,” says Michael LeRoy, an expert in labor law and labor relations at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign.

  • U. of I. kinesiology and community health professor Neha Gothe explores the relationship between physical activity and cognitive aging.

    Experts review evidence yoga is good for the brain

    Scientists have known for decades that aerobic exercise strengthens the brain and contributes to the growth of new neurons, but few studies have examined how yoga affects the brain. A review of the science finds evidence that yoga enhances many of the same brain structures and functions that benefit from aerobic exercise.

  • From left, nutritional sciences graduate student Joseph Beals, kinesiology and community health professor Nicholas Burd, kinesiology graduate student Sarah Skinner and their colleagues found that eating whole eggs after resistance exercise boosted muscle building and repair significantly more than eating egg whites with an equivalent amount of protein.

    Whole eggs better for muscle building and repair than egg whites, researchers find

    People who consume 18 grams of protein from whole eggs or from egg whites after engaging in resistance exercise differ dramatically in how their muscles build protein, a process called protein synthesis, during the post-workout period, researchers report in a new study. Specifically, the post-workout muscle-building response in those eating whole eggs is 40 percent greater than in those consuming an equivalent amount of protein from egg whites, the team found.

  • Laws about pregnant women and substance abuse questioned

    CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - In Wisconsin, an expectant woman can be taken into custody if police believe her abuse of alcohol may harm her unborn child. In South Dakota, pregnant alcohol and drug users can be committed to treatment centers for up to nine months.

  • Top and bottom views of a microfluidic cartridge

    Study: Portable, point-of-care COVID-19 test could bypass the lab

    In a new study, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign researchers have demonstrated a prototype of a rapid COVID-19 molecular test and a simple-to-use, portable instrument for reading the results with a smartphone in 30 minutes, which could enable point-of-care diagnosis without needing to send samples to a lab.

  • Former University of Illinois graduate student Neha Gothe and colleagues found that 20 minutes of yoga significantly improved participants' reaction time and accuracy in tests of cognitive function. Gothe is now a professor of kinesiology at Wayne State University.

    A 20-minute bout of yoga stimulates brain function immediately after

    CHAMPAIGN, lll. - Researchers report that a single, 20-minute session of Hatha yoga significantly improved participants' speed and accuracy on tests of working memory and inhibitory control, two measures of brain function associated with the ability to maintain focus and take in, retain and use new information. Participants performed significantly better immediately after the yoga practice than after moderate to vigorous aerobic exercise for the same amount of time.

  • A green view through a classroom window can improve students’ performance, study finds

    High school students perform better on tests if they are in a classroom with a view of a green landscape, rather than a windowless room or a room with a view of built space, according to research from the University of Illinois Department of Landscape Architecture.

  • Professor Adrian Bourgos

    Do politics or protests have a place in sports?

    A U. of I. professor who specializes in the history of sports says it’s not realistic to see sporting events as free of politics or protest

  • Photo of Michael LeRoy, a University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign professor of labor and employment relations

    What protections do no-show workers have during a pandemic?

    The U.S. government can take measures to ensure that essential workers such as health care workers report to their jobs, but forced labor isn’t allowed under the Constitution, says U. of I. labor expert Michael LeRoy.

  • Richard Powers wins Pulitzer Prize in Fiction for 'The Overstory'

    Author Richard Powers, a professor emeritus of English at the University of Illinois, has won the 2019 Pulitzer Prize in Fiction for his novel “The Overstory.”

  • Sundiata Cha-Jua

    The movie 'Selma': Historically correct, if not historically accurate

    Just say the name "Selma," and anyone who knows the history of the civil rights movement of the 1950s and 1960s will know what you mean. It was on the Edmund Pettus Bridge in that Alabama city almost 50 years ago (March 7, 1965) that peaceful marchers were beaten back with billy clubs wielded by state and local lawmen. Captured on network television news, it would become known as "Bloody Sunday." The movie "Selma," which opened nationwide last Friday (Jan. 9), tells the story of that day and events before and after, which would prompt passage of the Voting Rights Act that summer. Sundiata Cha-Jua, a professor of history and of African-American studies at Illinois, teaches courses on both the civil rights movement and African-Americans in film. He talked about the film and the history with News Bureau social sciences editor Craig Chamberlain.

  • The small sensor connects to an embeddable wireless transmitter that lies on top of the skull.

    Tiny electronic implants monitor brain injury, then melt away

    A new class of small, thin electronic sensors can monitor temperature and pressure within the skull – crucial health parameters after a brain injury or surgery – then melt away when they are no longer needed, eliminating the need for additional surgery to remove the monitors and reducing the risk of infection and hemorrhage.

  • People with cystic fibrosis are missing a protein in the lining of the lung that releases bicarbonate, a key infection-fighting agent. The drug amphotericin can form channels to release bicarbonate in lung tissue, restoring the airway surface liquid’s antibiotic properties.

    Potential new cystic fibrosis treatment uses 'molecular prosthetic' for missing lung protein

    An approved drug normally used to treat fungal infections could also do the job of a protein channel that is missing or defective in the lungs of people with cystic fibrosis, operating as a prosthesis on the molecular scale, says new research from the University of Illinois and the University of Iowa.

    Cystic fibrosis is a lifelong disease that makes patients vulnerable to lung infections. There are treatments for some but not all patients, and there is no cure. The drug restored infection-fighting properties in lung tissue donated by human patients as well as in pigs with cystic fibrosis. It has potential to become the first treatment to address all types of cystic fibrosis, regardless of the genetic mutation that causes the protein deficiency.

  • Plant biology professor Lisa Ainsworth is one of eight Illinois faculty members on the Clarivate Analytics / Thomson Reuters Highly Cited Researchers list, 2016.

    Eight Illinois researchers rank among world’s most influential

    Eight University of Illinois researchers have been named to the Thomson Reuters / Clarivate Analytics Highly Cited Researchers list for 2016. The list identifies scientists “whose research has had significant global impact within their respective fields of study."

  • Six Illinois researchers named AAAS fellows

    Six researchers from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have been named Fellows of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

  • Illinois Natural History Survey conservation biologist Mark Davis and his colleagues found declines in genetic diversity in the remaining populations of greater prairie chickens in Illinois.

    Greater prairie chickens cannot persist in Illinois without help, researchers report

    An iconic bird whose booming mating calls once reverberated across “the Prairie State” can survive in Illinois, but only with the help of periodic human interventions, researchers report.

  • University of Illinois kinesiology and community health professor Ruopeng An found that people who increased their consumption of plain water by 1 percent decreased the number of calories they consumed, as well as the amounts of sugar, sodium, fat and cholesterol they took in daily. The findings were consistent across race/ethnicity, income levels and body weight status, according to the study, published in the Journal of Human Nutrition and Dietetics.

    Drinking more water associated with numerous dietary benefits, study finds

    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.

  • Richard Tempest

    What do Russians hope to gain from U.S. elections interference?

    Russia is trying to sow disruption and division around the U.S. presidential election in order to promote its own geopolitical interests.

  • Supersweet Sweet Corn: 50 Years in the Making

    Fifty years ago, sweet corn wasn't all that sweet and had a short shelf-life, which made it difficult for grocery stores to stock it. As a result of the persistence of some UI corn researchers, today's sweet corn not only lives up to its name in taste, it maintains its high quality for more than a week, long enough to get it into stores and onto dinner tables. Jerald "Snook" Pataky, UI plant pathologist in the College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences, has researched the history of UI’s contribution to the existence of today's supersweet corn and will be one of the featured speakers at Agronomy Day on Aug. 21. s

  • Marching Illini bringing in Santa at Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade

    The entrance of Santa Claus at the end of the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade ushers in the holiday season. And this year, the Marching Illini will be ushering in Santa Claus.

  • Brent McBride, a professor of human development at Illinois, says the college drop-out rates of traditional undergraduates who are also full-time parents is a growing problem in the U.S.

    On-campus child care needed for increasing number of student-parents

    CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - The lack of affordable, high-quality on-campus day care programs that cater to undergraduate students who double as parents is a stealth issue that has the potential to harm both the student-parent and the child, says a University of Illinois expert in early childhood education.

  • Adam Aaronson with some of his crossword puzzles

    Illinois student's puzzle to appear in The New York Times

    Computer science student Adam Aaronson loves puzzles, and a crossword puzzle he created will be published in The New York Times.

  • Photo of, from left, nutritional sciences professor Manabu T. Nakamura; Elvira Gonzalez de Mejia, director of the Division of Nutritional Sciences; and animal sciences professor Jan E. Novakofski.

    Caffeine may offset some health risks of diets high in fat, sugar

    A new study in rats suggests that caffeine may offset some of the negative effects of an obesogenic diet by reducing lipid storage, weight gain and the production of triglycerides.

  • Field archaeologists Marie Meizis and Doug Jackson work together to record their data.

    Extracting history from a cornfield

    When I get to the archaeological site, I’m surprised to see that it’s in the middle of an active cornfield. Dusty furrows with tiny sprigs of corn come to within about 10 feet of the dig. The researchers are already here, gently peeling back their tarps, assembling their gear and getting ready for another day.

    The tarps cover the excavation of one of about two dozen dwellings that stood on this site roughly 800 years ago. A short distance away, another team works on a second house.

  • American bittersweet, left, has red berries encased in orange capsules, while oriental bittersweet, right, has red berries encased in bright yellow capsules.

    Many Midwestern retailers sell mislabeled invasive vines

    Gardeners hoping to celebrate the beauty of American bittersweet – a native vine that produces orange berries in the fall and is used for wreaths – may be unwittingly buying an invasive bittersweet instead. That’s because many Midwestern retailers are selling oriental bittersweet with labels misidentifying it as the native plant, researchers report. These sales are occurring in stores and online.

  • Sandra Kopels

    The ethical dilemmas inherent in school social work

    A Minute With™... Sandra Kopels, a lawyer and social worker

  • Bedlam unfolds as Illinois fans celebrate a major upset victory over heavily favored Wisconsin.

    Surviving a football frenzy

    Thirty-one. That’s the number the Illinois football coaching staff writes on the white board for the players to see. Many of the fans filing into Memorial Stadium today know this number, as well. Thirty-one is the number of points by which pundits predict Illinois will lose to Wisconsin. That’s a tough number. 

    Doesn’t matter. My job as a university photographer is to tell the Illini story. There is always plenty to capture and celebrate. The weather is spectacular. It is Homecoming. Illinois has been competitive against some tough foes. I can work with that. 

  • A new study links blood levels of a key nutrient to brain structure and intelligence in older adults.

    Study links nutrition to brain health and intelligence in older adults

    A study of older adults offers insight into how a pigment found in leafy greens that tends to accumulate in brain tissue may contribute to the preservation of “crystallized intelligence,” the ability to use the skills and knowledge one has acquired over a lifetime.

  • University of Illinois engineers developed fiber-optic technology that can transmit data at a blazing-fast 57 gigabits per second, without errors. Pictured are graduate students Curtis Wang and Michael Liu with professor Milton Feng.

    Record-speed data transmission could make big data more accessible

    With record-breaking speeds for fiber-optic data transmission, University of Illinois engineers have paved a fast lane on the information superhighway – creating on-ramps for big data in the process.

  • Researchers tested 11 household fabrics that are commonly used for homemade masks and found that all are effective at curbing the small and large respiratory droplets that are released when we speak, cough or sneeze.

    Most homemade masks are doing a great job, even when we sneeze, study finds

    Studies indicate that homemade masks help combat the spread of viruses like COVID-19 when combined with frequent hand-washing and physical distancing. Many of these studies focus on the transfer of tiny aerosol particles; however, researchers say that speaking, coughing and sneezing generates larger droplets that carry virus particles. Because of this, mechanical engineer Taher Saif said the established knowledge may not be enough to determine how the effectiveness of some fabrics used in homemade masks.

  • Brain activity reflects differences in types of anxiety

    CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - All anxiety is not created equal, and a research team at the University of Illinois now has the data to prove it. The team has found the most compelling evidence yet of differing patterns of brain activity associated with each of two types of anxiety: anxious apprehension (verbal rumination, worry) and anxious arousal (intense fear, panic, or both).

  • Thin, soft stick-on patches that stretch and move with the skin incorporate commercial, off-the-shelf chip-based electronics for sophisticated wireless health monitoring. The new device was developed by John A. Rogers of Illinois and Yonggang Huang of Northwestern University.

    Off the shelf, on the skin: Stick-on electronic patches for health monitoring

    CHAMPAIGN, Ill. — Wearing a fitness tracker on your wrist or clipped to your belt is so 2013. Engineers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and Northwestern University have demonstrated thin, soft stick-on patches that stretch and move with the skin and incorporate commercial, off-the-shelf chip-based electronics for sophisticated wireless health monitoring.

  • Christy Lleras, a professor of human and community development, says that "soft skills" are better predictors of earnings and higher educational achievement later in life than having good grades and high standardized test scores.

    Social skills, extracurricular activities in high school pay off later in life

    CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - It turns out that being voted "Most likely to succeed" in high school might actually be a good predictor of one's financial and educational success later in life.

  • Illinois researchers found that the shape of a tumor may play a role in how cancer cells become primed to spread. From left: materials science and engineering professor Kristopher Kilian, graduate student Junmin Lee and veterinary medicine professor Timothy Fan.

    Shape of tumor may affect whether cells can metastasize

    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.