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Showalter Receives the Inaugural Eastern Analytical Society New Faculty Award in NMR Spectroscopy

Showalter Receives the Inaugural Eastern Analytical Society New Faculty Award in NMR Spectroscopy

Scott Showalter, an assistant professor of chemistry, has been selected by Agilent Technologies as the recipient of the inaugural Eastern Analytical Society New Faculty Award in Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR) Spectroscopy. The award recognizes outstanding contributions by new faculty to the development of the field of NMR spectroscopy.

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The American Mathematical Society Elects New Fellows from Penn State

Mathematical scientists from around the world have been named to the inaugural class of the Fellows of the American Mathematical Society (AMS), an association of professional mathematicians dedicated to mathematical research and scholarship. This inaugural class of 1,119 Fellows represents over 600 institutions and includes many professors from Penn State University. The Fellows of the AMS designation recognizes members who have made outstanding contributions to the creation, exposition, advancement, communication, and utilization of mathematics.

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Gene Required for Nerve Regeneration Now Identified

Gene Required for Nerve Regeneration Now Identified

A gene that is associated with regeneration of injured nerve cells has been identified by scientists at Penn State University and Duke University. The team, led by Melissa Rolls, an assistant professor of biochemistry and molecular biology at Penn State, has found that a mutation in a single gene can entirely shut down the process by which axons -- the parts of the nerve cell that are responsible for sending signals to other cells -- regrow themselves after being cut or damaged.

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When cosmic rays and Earth collide

When cosmic rays and Earth collide

This article, written by Barbara Kennedy and featuring the work of Penn State scientist Stephane Coutu, originally appeared in the Centre Daily Times (CDT) on 28 October 2012 in the bimonthly "Focus on Research" column, which highlights different research projects being conducted at Penn State.

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Penn State Lauds Larson for Administrative Excellence

Penn State Lauds Larson for Administrative Excellence

Daniel Larson, Verne Willaman Dean of Penn State University's Eberly College of Science, has been honored by the University with the 2012 Award for Administrative Excellence. The award is given to a faculty or staff member whose performance, methods, and achievements exemplify the highest standards of administrative excellence. Since Larson became dean in 1998, the Eberly College of Science has made stunning advancements in national rankings of faculty quality and research productivity -- important factors for excellence in both graduate and undergraduate science programs.

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Haunted-U: Eighty Children Gather for an Afternoon of Spooky Science

Haunted-U: Eighty Children Gather for an Afternoon of Spooky Science

Eighty K-6 students participated in a zombie-themed science-education event called "Haunted-U" on 21 October on Penn State's University Park campus. Haunted-U is a hands-on way for young students to learn the real science about the spread of infectious diseases by studying the "science" behind zombies -- including how to recognize the signs of a zombie outbreak, how to stop one if it occurs, and how to keep from becoming a zombie. Check out photos from the event.

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CANCELED: Jonathan Losos to Present Marker Lectures in Evolutionary Biology on 29 and 30 October 2012

PLEASE NOTE: The Marker Lectures in Evolutionary Biology, originally scheduled for 29 and 30 October, have been canceled. This web page will be updated when the lectures have been rescheduled.

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"Where Genius Meets Imagination" Science Minitalks at Penn State on 9 November 2012

Brief talks by some of the most inspiring science and engineering researchers at Penn State will take place on 9 November 2012 in the HUB Alumni Hall on the Penn State University Park campus. The free event, called Discovery-U, is designed to give the public a quick and exciting glimpse into some of the superb research projects now underway at Penn State.

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 International Astronomical Union Elects Mercedes Richards President of Commission on Close Binary Stars

International Astronomical Union Elects Mercedes Richards President of Commission on Close Binary Stars

Mercedes Richards, a Penn State professor of astronomy and astrophysics, has been elected to a three-year term as president of the International Astronomical Union (IAU) Commission 42 on Close Binary Stars, one of the largest commissions. Richards served as Vice-President of the Commission from 2009 to 2012.

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Early-Earth Cells Modeled to Show How First Life Forms Might Have Packaged RNA

Early-Earth Cells Modeled to Show How First Life Forms Might Have Packaged RNA

Researchers at Penn State University have developed a chemical model that mimics a possible step in the formation of cellular life on Earth four-billion years ago. Using large "macromolecules" called polymers, the scientists created primitive cell-like structures that they infused with RNA -- the genetic coding material that is thought to precede the appearance of DNA on Earth -- and demonstrated how the molecules would react chemically under conditions that might have been present on the early Earth. The journal Nature Chemistry will post the research as an Advance Online Publication on 14 October 2012.

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Ferry Named Co-chair of the National Academy of Science Committee on Astrobiology and Planetary Science

Ferry Named Co-chair of the National Academy of Science Committee on Astrobiology and Planetary Science

James Greg Ferry, the Stanley Person Professor of Molecular Biology at Penn State University, has been selected as co-chair of the National Academy of Science Committee on Astrobiology and Planetary Science (CAPS). The purpose of CAPS is described as assisting the federal government "in integrating and planning programs in astrobiology and planetary science. The CAPS scope spans space-based and Earth-based planetary research, including astrobiology and planetary protection. CAPS provides an independent, authoritative forum for identifying and discussing issues in astrobiology and planetary science between the research community, the federal government, and the interested public."

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Forensic Science Seminar Series Features "Forensic Science: A Discussion on the Importance of Research and Practical Applications in High-Profile Cases" on 22 October 2012

A free public lecture about the application of forensic-science research to criminal cases, "Forensic Science: A Discussion on the Importance of Research and Practical Applications in High-Profile Cases," will be given on Monday, 22 October 2012, at 12:20 p.m. in 112 Borland Building on the Penn State University Park campus.

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New Black Hole Discovered in Our Galaxy

New Black Hole Discovered in Our Galaxy

A tsunami of high-energy X-rays streaming toward Earth from a rare X-ray nova has revealed the presence of a previously unknown black hole located toward the center of our Milky Way galaxy. A team of scientists including Penn State astronomers detected the X-ray event with NASA's Swift satellite, whose science and flight operations are controlled by Penn State University from the Mission Operations Center near the University Park campus.

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Pinpointing accuracy: Research helps solidify evidence in court

Pinpointing accuracy: Research helps solidify evidence in court

This article, written by Barbara Kennedy and featuring the work of Penn State scientist Cedric Neumann, originally appeared in the Centre Daily Times (CDT) on 30 September 2012 in the bimonthly "Focus on Research" column, which highlights different research projects being conducted at Penn State.

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Case of Missing Quasar Gas Clouds Now Solved

Case of Missing Quasar Gas Clouds Now Solved

The case of the missing quasar gas clouds has been solved by a worldwide research team led by Penn State University astronomers Nurten Filiz Ak and Niel Brandt. The discovery is being announced today in a paper published in The Astrophysical Journal, which describes 19 distant quasars whose giant clouds of gas seem to have disappeared in just a few years.

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Fedoroff Awarded Nevada Medal

Fedoroff Awarded Nevada Medal

Nina V. Fedoroff, the Verne M. Willaman Professor of Life Sciences and Evan Pugh Professor of Biology at Penn State, has been awarded the 2013 Desert Research Institute (DRI) Nevada Medal in recognition of her pioneering research in the field of plant genetics. Given annually since 1988, the award recognizes outstanding scientific, engineering, and technical achievements. The medalist presents public lectures at DRI campuses and receives the award from the governor of Nevada at dinner ceremonies in Reno and Las Vegas attended by leaders in business, education, and government.

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Marker Lectures in the Mathematical Sciences Scheduled for 1, 2, 3, and 4 October 2012

Enrico Bombieri, Professor of Mathematics at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton, New Jersey, will present the Russell Marker Lectures in the Mathematical Sciences on 1, 2, 3, and 4 October 2012, at Penn State University on the University Park campus. The free public lectures are sponsored by the Penn State Eberly College of Science.

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Five Alumni Honored with Penn State's Outstanding Science Alumni Award

Five Alumni Honored with Penn State's Outstanding Science Alumni Award

In its tradition of honoring high-achieving science alumni, the Penn State University Eberly College of Science will honor five alumni with the Outstanding Science Alumni Award for the year 2012. Receiving this award are Eliav Barr, Howard R. Gordon, Gary R. Fleisher, Joellen M. Schildkraut, and Robert C. Shaler. The Board of Directors of the Eberly College of Science Alumni Society established this award to recognize alumni who have a record of significant professional achievements in their field and who are outstanding role models for students in the college.

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DNA Analysis Aids in Classifying Single-Celled Algae

DNA Analysis Aids in Classifying Single-Celled Algae

For nearly 260 years -- since Carl Linnaeus developed his system of naming plants and animals -- researchers classified species based on visual attributes like color, shape and size. In the past few decades, researchers found that sequencing DNA can more accurately identify species. A group of single-celled algae -- Symbiodinum -- that live inside corals and are critical to their survival -- are only now being separated into species using DNA analysis, according to biologists.

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Forensic Science Seminar Series Features "Introduction to the Medical Examiner" on 15 October 2012

A free public lecture about the role and duties of a medical examiner, "Introduction to the Medical Examiner," will be given on Monday, 15 October 2012 at 12:20 p.m. in 112 Borland Building on the Penn State University Park campus. Roger Mitchell, Jr., a board-certified pathologist at the New Jersey Medical Examiner Service, will present the lecture, which is the second of three presentations on forensic science and its use as a law-enforcement tool in Penn State's 2012 Forensic Science Lecture Series.

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