Published by the Students of Johns Hopkins since 1896
October 19, 2021

Science & Technology

Courtesy of Veena Das
Professor Veena Das is a professor and scholar of Indian anthropology.

Social Science Spotlight: Professor Veena Das

It is difficult to neatly pigeonhole Veena Das’ research endeavors. A Kreiger-Eisenhower Professor of Anthropology, Das is a scholar of Indian anthropology, the anthropology of violence and social suffering and ways of producing knowledge.

BME team’s novel product will make at-home dialysis safer for patients with kidney failure.

BME student team creates device to make at-home dialysis safer

Of the 660,000 Americans receiving treatment for kidney failure, 468,000 are undergoing dialysis. Now a team of engineers at Hopkins have developed a device that reduces the risk of infection in at-home dialysis. Their work will make it even more efficient for patients to perform dialysis at their own convenience. 

Senior Woodrow Wilson fellows shared their original research projects with attendees.

Senior Woodrow Wilson Fellows present their original research

Senior Woodrow Wilson Fellows presented their independent research projects to the Hopkins community on Thursday, April 25. The Woodrow Wilson Fellowship Program provides undergraduates with financial support and faculty mentoring on research over the course of three or four years. Students apply to the program as incoming students or rising sophomores by submitting a project proposal and they work on their projects during the entirety of their Hopkins careers.

When shown images of faces, children passed character judgements.

Research shows children also judge on facial features

If a child you just met is not particularly nice to you, it may not be your fault. A recent psychological study from the American Psychological Association has provided evidence that young children tend to make snap character judgments based on physical features, showing that a judgmental nature may be more inherent in humans than previously believed. 

Hopkins holds sustainability hackathon

GreenHacks hosted the first sustainability hackathon at Hopkins on April 20. The hackathon was held at FastForward U, a collaborative space dedicated to empowering student entrepreneurs across disciplines. 

Mickey Sloat presents her research at TriBeta poster session.

TriBeta poster session features student research

Effective communication is one of the hallmarks of scientific research. In light of this, the Rho Psi chapter of the Beta Beta Beta (TriBeta) National Biological Honor Society hosted a poster session on Friday. Students majoring in Molecular and Cellular Biology at Hopkins had the opportunity to present their research to their peers.

CRISPR targets and removes or replaces pieces of genetic material.

CRISPR system could be the future of gene editing

Researchers at Cornell University recently developed a novel CRISPR system that has the potential to affect human genes. This research was featured in the paper “Introducing a Spectrum of Long-Range Genomic Deletions in Human Embryonic Stem Cells Using Type I CRISPR-Cas” published in the journal Molecular Cell. The development may, in the future, be able to recognize and destroy viruses such as Epstein-Barr and hepatitis B.  

Courtesy of Laura Wadsten
Sheri Lewis and Peter Agre discuss their experiences in medical diplomacy for Osler Medical Symposium.

Nobel Prize Winner discuses medical diplomacy

The Osler Medical Symposium held their last event of the semester on Tuesday, hosting Dr. Peter Agre and Dr. Sheri Lewis. Agre is the recipient of the 2003 Nobel Prize in Chemistry and a Bloomberg Distinguished Professor. Lewis is the manager of the Global Disease Surveillance Program at the Applied Physics Laboratory. 

The accuracy of genetic tests like 23andMe are under scrutiny.

Genetic tests like 23andMe and Ancestry may not accurately predict diseases

It has long been known that some diseases are genetically inherited.  For example, sickle cell anemia is caused by a single mutation at a specific point in a gene responsible for hemoglobin. Having two copies of this mutated gene guarantees the disease. However, the relationship between one’s genes and disease is not always direct. 

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Researchers uncovered remains believed to be the intermediate between apes and humans.

New human ancestor discovered in the Philippines

Researchers recently discovered the remains of a species of human that existed over 50,000 years ago in the Philippines, showing scientists that the Southeast Asian region played a larger role in human evolution than previously thought. 

World's first 3D-printed heart shows promise for organ regeneration

In recent years, the rapidly evolving world of 3D printing has given rise to numerous products that serve functional or aesthetic purposes. In an ambitious effort, scientists even successfully engineered simple human tissues using 3D printing. However, the latest breakthrough in the field is the creation of a product whose intricacy and complexity exceeds many’s expectations — a complete heart.

Antibiotic resistance is now a widespread issue in developing nations.

Drug-resistant infections threaten urban health

In Kibera, an impoverished area in Kenya’s capital city of Nairobi, widespread and uncontrolled antibiotic use is contributing to a significant increase in drug-resistant infections. Far from being an isolated example, Kibera is just one of a growing list of poor urban locations in developing countries where antibiotic resistance has become a deadly issue through a similar combination of factors. Dr. Guy Palmer, a professor at Washington State University who studies global health and infectious diseases, discussed this in an interview with the New York Times. 

Investigators found that ground beef was the cause of the mysterious wave of E. coli outbreak.

Solving the mysterious cause of the E. coli outbreak

On April 5, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported that 72 people in five different states were ill as the result of a multistate outbreak of Escherichia coli (E. coli) with no confirmed cause. Now the outbreak has spread to at least 109 individuals, and the CDC reports that the source is most likely ground beef. 

An increasing number of ER visits has been attributed to marijuana use.

Why is marijuana landing people in the hospital?

We’ve all heard that you can’t overdose on cannabis. This raises the question as to why, according to a recent study, a hospital in Colorado saw 9,973 cannabis-related emergency room (ER) visits between 2012 to 2016. 

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