Science & Technology


CRISPR treats Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy

September 19, 2018

Since the first successful use of Clustered Regularly Interspaced Short Palindromic Repeats (CRISPR) as a gene editing tool in 2013, CRISPR has become a large topic of conversation both in science and at the dinner table. Recently, CRISPR has been used ...

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CRISPR is an extremely powerful gene editing system that was originally found in bacteria.

Scientists explore ways to harness sustainable energy

September 20, 2018

With global warming such a hot button topic in today’s day and age, it is unsurprising that scientists have been continually searching for new renewable sources of energy that don’t harm our planet. While hydroelectric and solar energy are now common energy sources, scientists have seemingly combined the two practices in new studies at Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich (LMU) in Germany: Researchers at the university have split water molecules using solar energy. This could be a promising renewable energy source for future generations. 


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Over 300 students from across the U.S. came to HopHacks on Homewood Campus this past weekend to try and develop a model or app in 36 hours.

HopHacks hosts its biannual event at Homewood

September 20, 2018

More than 300 undergraduate and graduate students from across the country came together to participate in the biannual HopHacks event this past weekend on the Homewood Campus. HopHacks is organized Major League Hacking (MLH). It gives teams a limited 36 hours to develop an innovative model or app.


Birds are losing homes due to deforestation

September 19, 2018

The cloud forests of Honduras are a sight to behold, as they are characterized by a low-level cloud cover at the canopy level. Also known as a montane rainforest, this region has heavy rainfall and constant condensation in the air, a result of the cooling of moisture-laden air currents deflected upward by the mountains. Moisture is abundant from water vapor, and due to elevation and climate conditions, the ecosystem is fed directly by clouds.

John Leszczynski/ CC BY-SA 2.0
Deforestation in cloud forests is causing birds to migrate to higher altitudes.

How a military operation led to a cure for malaria

September 20, 2018

In the jungles of Vietnam in the 1960s, at the same time as they were fighting one another, American and North Vietnamese forces were both battling drug-resistant malaria. The disease was living up to its storied history of being an absolute pain for military commanders, undeterred by therapies that had lost effectiveness due to widespread and often haphazard use. 


Gates Foundation donates $20.5M gift to Bloomberg

September 20, 2018

On Sept. 10, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation announced a $20.5 million gift to the Bloomberg School of Public Health to fund reproductive health services for urban adolescent populations. The grant will specifically go toward funding The Challenge Initiative (TCI), an international program focused on providing sexual and reproductive resources for impoverished urban populations worldwide. 

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The Gates Foundation recently donated to the Bloomberg School of Public Health.

 
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Once believed uninhabitable, planets covered in water could support life.

Waterworld planets have the potential to host life

September 12, 2018

For years, astronomers have been exploring the question of whether life exists on planets other than Earth. Advances in technology have allowed for more extensive research into exoplanets, or planets outside our solar system. Water worlds (also known as deep ocean planets) are a specific type of exoplanet that are completely covered by ocean, which can be hundreds of miles deep.


 
Courtesy of Emily Burnette
3,000 applicants from over 250 school gather to participant in the annual MedHacks event.

MedHacks hosts annual hackathon “Snow Day”

September 13, 2018

MedHacks, an entirely student-run medical hackathon, kicked off its fourth annual event called “Snow Day” from Sept. 7 to 9 at the School of Medicine. This year the event attracted a total of 3,000 applicants who represented over 250 schools and 100 different majors.


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Blood glutamine levels might reveal patients who are more susceptible to therapy resistance.

Hormone therapy may not effectively treat prostate cancer

September 13, 2018

Prostate cancer is the most commonly diagnosed non-skin-related cancer in men and the second leading cause of cancer deaths in American men. With the largest risk factor being age, all men have the risk of developing prostate cancer during their lifetime. 


 
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The moving Target Defense system can protect consumers from hackers.

New cyber technology develops moving target defense

September 12, 2018

It seems that every day a new online privacy breach or cyber attack is underway. From Facebook’s scandal with Cambridge Analytica and the proliferation of fake news to the alleged Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential election, today’s news demonstrates the destructive power that modern hackers possess. 


Our search for life on Mars

September 12, 2018

Those funny-looking, little green Martians have captivated human imagination since their first appearance in print in 1877. And maybe the intelligent version of Mars-based life doesn’t exist, but we’ve recently come closer to finding their long-lost cousins, microbes.


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An electrophphoretic neural implant used in mice can control epilepsy.

Novel neural implant controls epilepsy in rodents

September 12, 2018

Collaborating researchers from the University of Cambridge in the U.K., the École Nationale Supérieure des Mines in Paris, and the French National Institute of Health and Medical Research (Inserm) recently engineered an electrophoretic drug delivery method to treat neurological disorders via a neural probe implant in rodents.


Scientists discover a new uniquely human neuron

September 6, 2018

For millennia, scientists and philosophers have pondered what separates man from animal. Whether it was utilizing the mirror recognition test, examining ancient weapons and tools, or even looking into our own choices and decisions, we have always wondered what makes us so different. 

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Researchers at the Allen Institute have discovered new human neurons called “roseship cells.”

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Researchers around the world are trying to stimulate growth of nerve fibers.

Method to regenerate nerve fibers discovered

September 6, 2018

Spinal cord injuries are among the most alarming and unpredictable of injuries, carrying the possibility of paralysis. Compounding this fact, since severed nerve fibers in the central nervous system, which comprises the brain and spinal cord, do not regenerate, the paralysis has the potential to be permanent. 


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Researchers at the RIKEN Center for BDR found that two acetylcholine receptors in the brain are linked to dreaming.

Brain receptors govern how much we dream

September 6, 2018

Sleeping is often considered one of the most primitive and mundane aspects of biological existence. Some scientists claim that it is a survival instinct that has evolved for millions of years. However, despite its ancestral roots, sleep is not very well understood. In fact, countless mysteries take place when we sleep: How does the mind create dreams? Do dreams come in colors or black-and-white? Most importantly, how does the brain sustain and maintain high levels of activity during certain periods of the sleep cycle?