Published by the Students of Johns Hopkins since 1896
February 6, 2023

Science & Technology


Cities with PFAS-contaminated water supplies may become entirely reliant on bottled water.

An overview of PFAS and how they impact our environmental health

According to the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), most people have been exposed to Perfluoroalkyl and Polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS). The agency reports that human epidemiological studies have found increased cholesterol levels in exposed populations and instances of low infant birth weights, immunodeficiencies, cancer for Perfluorooctanoic Acid (PFOA) and thyroid hormone disruption for Perfluorooctanesulfonic acid (PFOS).

Jotham Suez moved to Baltimore in January to start a new laboratory at the Bloomberg School of Public Health.

Suez lab explores the human microbiome at Bloomberg

When poet Walt Whitman wrote the famous line “I contain multitudes,” trillions of microbes were probably not what he had in mind. The analogy, however, is fitting for scientists studying the microscopic ecosystem that exists both on human skin and in the gut, referred to as the microbiome. Like fingerprints, every human has a slightly different microbial society taking root inside of them. 

Researchers found that nurses with seasonal allergies benefited the most from wearing masks.

Masks may ward off seasonal allergies

A new study could provide relief for seasonal allergy sufferers. The paper, published in The Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology, suggests that wearing masks may relieve some symptoms of allergic rhinitis, also known as hay fever.

Researchers identified cell moving mechanisms, including what occurs when two cells are about to collide. 

New techniques help explain how cells interact in 3D environments

Whether it’s a lab technician staring at a petri dish from above or a Hopkins student taking notes from a PowerPoint, biology is often only studied from a two-dimensional perspective. A team of scientists at Hopkins and Virginia Tech has begun to shift this perspective with a recent paper exploring cell motility, published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS).

Latrobe Hall is home to the Department of Mechanical Engineering.

Engineer things that move with the MechE major

“The satisfaction of seeing something on paper and in my head become a reality, and especially when it does something — for example if it moves, or makes sounds... even if it’s something small... that is what I find most rewarding about mechanical engineering.”

Kasamoto reflects on her experiences as a freshman and offers advice for overcoming impostor syndrome. 

Tips for overcoming impostor syndrome

With the second round of midterms in swing, I hope everyone on campus is officially somewhat oriented with the semi-in-person college experience and has made at least made one midnight trip to UniMini for chicken nuggets and mozzarella sticks. 

The Johns Hopkins Capacity Command Center rises to the challenge

The Johns Hopkins Capacity Command Center, which was originally launched in 2016, is the first of its kind within the health-care system. The command center’s visual dashboards allow for workers to analyze real-time information, such as occupancies, operating room schedules and emergency department capacitance across the entire hospital. Real-time analytics process data as soon as it comes into the database, helping users make decisions without delay.

SON Assistant Professor Michelle Patch noted that not everyone can access mass vaccination sites.

Panelists highlight racial inequities in vaccine access and distribution

The School of Nursing (SON) held an event titled “COVID Vaccine Equity: Reaching Underserved Communities Locally and Globally” on April 7. The discussion was co-moderated by Angie Chang, manager of the Center for Global Initiatives (CGI), and CGI Director Nancy Reynolds, also co-director of the Collaborating Centre for Nursing Information and Knowledge Management at the World Health Organization (WHO).

The team is testing out different messaging styles to see what resonates with people hesitant to be vaccinated. 

Only half of American adults report they will be vaccinated ASAP, study finds

According to a study published in Vaccine at the end of March, only half of adults in the U.S. claim they will accept the COVID-19 vaccine as soon as possible. Since the herd immunity threshold for COVID-19 requires that around 90% of adults be vaccinated or immunized through infection, public health experts still must convince a large segment of the population of the vaccines’ effectiveness. 

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