Science & Technology


PURAs awarded for student research

April 25, 2013

Hopkins has celebrated its status as the oldest research university in the U.S for the 137 years since it was founded. The Provost’s Undergraduate Research Awards (PURA) seek to enhance the founding research principle. On April 22, these awards of ...


EPAC2 may be the key to curing type II diabetes

April 25, 2013

The next time you contemplate the glazed munchy selection at the FFC, do your pancreas a favor and think of this article. Consistently combating fatigue with sugary pick-me-ups can seriously burn out your beta cells, which can only lead to one thing: diabetes.


Eliminating the top two causes of death in children

April 25, 2013

You have probably suffered from one or maybe two of the leading causes of death in children around the world. Thankfully, you are still alive. This means that the two illnesses, which together claim the lives of over a quarter of all children across the globe, are preventable. The deadly culprits? Pneumonia and diarrhea.


A non-Darwinian theory of evolution proposed

April 25, 2013

We are surrounded by a limitlessly complex world. Plants, although simple and green on the surface, contain intricate machineries that allow it to wield its photosynthetic powers. Humans, too, have developed extremely complicated functions over a tortuous and long path known as evolution.


The pleasures of musical experience studied

April 25, 2013

Have you ever wondered if that amazing feeling you get while listening to your favorite song is anything like what others experience when they listen to their favorite music? There is a pleasure associated with those songs that we do not get by listening to random sounds put together. Researchers found that when we are indulging ourselves with some sweet melody, the auditory cortex is not the only part of the brain activated: emotion-associated regions and reward circuits are also stimulated.


Structure of telomerase can help advance cancer research

April 25, 2013

Sometimes, the key to understanding is to take a good, hard look. Scientists have been doing just that, training their eyes on the telomerase enzyme which is known to play a significant role in aging, cancer and other diseases. For the first time, researchers have mapped out the structure of the entire enzyme complex. The researchers from UCLA and UC Berkeley say this breakthrough could lead to new ways of combatting disease, particularly cancer.


JHU team wins first place at health contest

April 18, 2013

After completing an internship at the World Health Organization, an opportunity caught the eye of junior Kevin Wang: it was an invitation to compete in the prestigious International Emory Global Health Case Competition. The contest is designed for teams of college students to compete to develop the most innovative solution to a current global health issue.


Clearer mechanism of gout helps drug design

April 18, 2013

The packing away of Spring Fair food vendors also signifies the end of 2013’s fried Oreo and colossal turkey leg eating spree. Of course, we all know how detrimental those foods are to our health, but few of us are aware of the havoc expensive foods such as fish, mushrooms and asparagus can wreak on our well being, causing a condition characterized by recurrent agonizing pain in the joints.


Appetites are modulated by tanycytes

April 18, 2013

Debating whether or not to eat that warm and soft chocolate chip cookie can be tough: succumb to desire or avoid the extra calories? Despite the time wasted over the decision, cravings usually trump other considerations. However, there may finally be a way to suppress such cravings. Led by Mohammad K. Hajihosseini from the University of East Anglia’s School of Biological Sciences, researchers have identified stem cells that have the potential to control appetite.


Doppler effect changes time perception

April 18, 2013

With the sci-fi prospect of a time machine comes the inevitable question: can we go back in time? But how do we know traveling to the past is in fact going back? This is because humans perceive time as one-directional. We think time only moves forward and nothing in the past can be changed or experienced again. Surprisingly, the common perception of time as having a direction has been confirmed by physicists. Furthermore, physicists discovered that our perception of time changes depending on when an event occurred. The distortion in our perception of time is named the temporal Doppler Effect.


Nurses learn medicine through simulations

April 18, 2013

The hospital is more than just the place where your grandmother gets her annual heart checkup or where lung transplants are performed. Cases that go in and out are very multifaceted, from bad splinters to limbs falling off and medical professionals are expected to be able to react to all situations. This includes talking to family members whose child was struck by lightning or helping a mass of patients in the emergency room who were victimized by a roof collapse in their building. At the Simulation Center at the School of Nursing, students experience real-life situations as part of their curriculum, so that future nurses will be equipped with not only the medical knowledge for their job, but also appropriate mentality and responsiveness as well.


Meteorite phosphates may have powered life

April 18, 2013

Could it be that the missing link between geology and biology has been discovered? Just ask Terry Kee, a reader at the University of Leeds in West Yorkshire, England. In his most recent study in the University’s chemistry department, Kee researches how non-living rock essentially converted into the building blocks of life.


Ice caps of Quelccaya melt at an alarming rate

April 18, 2013

A new discovery in Peru has given scientists a greater reason to be concerned about global warming. Part of the Quelccaya ice cap in the Peruvian Andes, which took 1,600 years to form, has almost completely melted over the past 25 years. The find was made by a team of Ohio State glaciologists, led by Lonnie G. Thompson, a professor in their School of Earth Sciences.


Superior student cancer research proposals awarded

April 11, 2013

Expectations don’t come much higher than they do when it comes to curing cancer. Philanthropist John G. Rangos Sr. fuels that audacious hope with the bold claim that Hopkins will surely be the first to cure cancer. On the strength of his conviction, Mr Rangos thus created the Rangos Award for Creativity in Cancer Discovery, which was presented to finalists Jason Howard, Ashwin Ram, Hogan Tang, Sylvie Stacy and Xiaochuan Yang on April 3.


Scientists improve cancer immunotherapy

April 11, 2013

We train dogs to do tricks for a treat and we train our children to behave well and get good grades in school. With the help of recent developments in biomedical research, we can also train white blood cells to specifically look for and kill only cancer cells.


SciTech Talk: Laziness, artificial leaves and bacteria

April 11, 2013

For the lazy students at Hopkins: For those plagued by constant laziness during school, you are in for a scientific treat. Thanks to recent findings, you may be able to blame your regular indolences on your DNA! A study on mice has shown that laziness can actually be a genetic predisposition. Researchers bred a group of active and lazy mice and monitored the activity of subsequent generations by measuring their running distances. There was a clear difference in running activity between the 10th generation mice that belonged in the active group and those in the lazy group. Through a technique called RNA deep sequencing, the scientists were able to find 36 prospective genes that may be involved in laziness. But even so, try not to let laziness hinder your studies!