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Boal Named 2014 Searle Scholar
22 July 2014Amie Boal, assistant professor of biochemistry and molecular biology, and of chemistry, recently was named a Searle Scholar. The Searle Scholars Program was established at the Chicago Community Trust in 1980 and is funded from the estates of Mr. and Mrs. John G. and Frances C. Searle. Mr. Searle was the grandson of the founder of the pharmaceutical company G.D. Searle & Company. The program annually recognizes fifteen exceptional young faculty members and supports independent research in medicine, chemistry, and the biological sciences.
Crowdfunding Campaign Underway to Support Student Research on Sustainable Agriculture
18 July 2014A group of Penn State students led by Assistant Professor of Biology Charles Anderson has launched a crowdfunding campaign to support their new research project in sustainable agriculture, Fast Farming: Feeding a Hot, Dry World. The campaign is the first to launch under a new partnership between Penn State and USEED, a crowd funding platform that partners with universities to enable researchers to invite friends, family members, colleagues, alumni, and the public to support projects that are important to them.
Alex Radosevich Receives Alfred P. Sloan Research Fellow Award
08 July 2014Alex Radosevich, an assistant professor of chemistry at Penn State University, has been honored with an Alfred P. Sloan Research Fellow award in recognition of his research accomplishments. Sloan Research Fellowships are intended to enhance the careers of the very best young faculty members in seven fields of science: chemistry, computational and evolutionary molecular biology, computer science, economics, mathematics, neuroscience, and physics.
Controversial Clues of Two 'Goldilocks Planets' That Might Support Life are Proven False
03 July 2014Mysteries about controversial signals coming from a dwarf star considered to be a prime target in the search for extraterrestrial life now have been solved in research led by scientists at Penn State University.
Alex Radosevich Receives National Science Foundation CAREER Award
03 July 2014Alex Radosevich, an assistant professor of chemistry at Penn State University, has been honored with a Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) award from the National Science Foundation (NSF).
Live Webcams: Scientists Studying Corals Damaged by Oil in the Gulf of Mexico
25 June 2014How are the corals doing now, four years after they were damaged by the Deep Water Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico? You can find out by watching live webcams and by sending messages to the scientists on a research ship that will be in the Gulf until July 4. The research expedition is led by Chief Scientist Chuck Fisher, a Penn State University professor of biology. Interact with the research crew, listen in, and watch as they explore the ocean floor. The 24/7 live webcams are on the expedition's website, Nautiluslive.org. You also can participate on Facebook (facebook.com/nautiluslive) and Twitter (@EVNautilus).
Baums Receives Humboldt Research Fellowship
24 June 2014Iliana Baums, associate professor of biology at Penn State University, has been awarded a 12-month Humboldt Research Fellowship for experienced researchers by the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation. The Humboldt Foundation is a nonprofit organization established by the Federal Republic of Germany that promotes international research cooperation. Recipients receive support for extended research at a German research institution of their choice. The fellowship is awarded in a worldwide competition to highly qualified scholars who are not living in Germany. Baums has elected to conduct her research at the Max Planck Institute for Marine Microbiology in Bremen. In Bremen, she plans to study the role of symbiotic bacteria in how the deep-sea corals they inhabit respond to oil exposure from human activity and natural sources.
Super-stretchable Yarn is Made of Graphene
20 June 2014A simple, scalable method of making strong, stretchable graphene oxide fibers that are easily scrolled into yarns and have strengths approaching that of Kevlar is possible, according to Penn State and Shinshu University, Japan, researchers.
Burst of Mutations During Initial Infection Allows Bacteria To Evade Human Immune Response
13 June 2014Bacteria that cause ulcers in humans undergo accelerated evolution during the initial stages of infection, allowing them to evade the immune system, according to new research by an international team of researchers including Penn State scientists. The study shows, for the first time, and in real-time, the interplay between the human immune system and invading bacteria that allows the bacteria to counter the immune response by quickly evolving.
Rescue of Alzheimer's Memory Deficit Achieved by Reducing 'Excessive Inhibition'
13 June 2014A new drug target to fight Alzheimer's disease has been discovered by a research team led by Gong Chen, a Professor of Biology and the Verne M. Willaman Chair in Life Sciences at Penn State University. The discovery also has potential for development as a novel diagnostic tool for Alzheimer's disease, which is the most common form of dementia and one for which no cure has yet been found.
Until Death Do Us Part: Genetics Reveal that Threatened Reef Corals and Their Symbiotic Algae Live Together but Evolve Independently
10 June 2014New research reveals that Caribbean corals and the algae that inhabit them form a remarkably stable relationship -- new knowledge that can serve as an important tool in preserving and restoring vital reef-building corals. A scientific paper describing these new findings by a team of marine biologists at Penn State University will be published as a cover article in Molecular Ecology on 10 June 2014.
NASA Ranks Swift Satellite Number One
28 May 2014NASA's top ranking among its astronomy satellites, not including the Hubble Space Telescope and Chandra X-ray Observatory, has been awarded to the Swift observatory, a project that involves Penn State scientists. Swift carries two telescopes whose lead scientists are Penn State astronomers and a third telescope led by a NASA scientist. Science and flight operations for Swift are controlled by Penn State from the Mission Operations Center at the University Park campus.
Harry Allcock Elected a Member of the National Academy of Engineering
27 May 2014Harry Allcock, Penn State Evan Pugh Professor of Chemistry, has been elected as a member of the National Academy of Engineering (NAE) for his pioneering research in phosphazene polymer chemistry and its use in the field of biomedical materials. Election to the NAE is an honor bestowed upon members by current NAE members, and is among the highest professional honors awarded to engineers and scientists.
Register Now for the Summer Symposium in Molecular Biology: Frontiers in Metallobiochemistry III
19 May 2014The 33rd Summer Symposium in Molecular Biology at The Pennsylvania State University, "Frontiers in Metallobiochemistry III," will be held at the University Park campus June 4–7, 2014.
Polar Day - Fostering Understanding, Awareness, and Appreciation of the Polar Regions through Outreach, Education, and Research
15 May 2014Penn Staters have been granted exceptional exposure to Arctic and Antarctic conditions recently—and not just because of the unusually harsh winter. On April 19, the second annual "Polar Day", the signature event of Penn State's Polar Center, brought together hundreds of university and community members alike. This followed the robust success of the inaugural Polar Day held in the spring of 2013. The Polar Center's mission is to further the study, teaching, and understanding of polar science and the Polar Regions. Directed by biology professor Eric Post, the center has provided opportunities for education and engagement, as well as a few surprises.
Groh Receives Two Major Schreyer Honors College Awards
14 May 2014John Groh, a recent graduate in physics and mathematics and a Schreyer Honors Scholar, was awarded two of the major Schreyer Honors College awards presented to graduating seniors: the Paul Axt Prize and the Douglas G. and Regina C. Evans Research Award. Groh was presented with these awards during the Schreyer Honors College Medals Ceremony on May 9 in Eisenhower Auditorium.
Frank Pugh Honored as an Evan Pugh Professor at Penn State
09 May 2014B. Franklin Pugh, Willaman Professor in Molecular Biology and professor of biochemistry and molecular biology at Penn State University, has been honored by the University with the title of Evan Pugh Professor. The title is the highest honor that Penn State bestows on a faculty member.
Andrew Read Honored as an Evan Pugh Professor at Penn State
09 May 2014Andrew F. Read, the Alumni Professor in the Biological Sciences and a professor of entomology at Penn State University, has been named an Evan Pugh Professor. The title is the highest honor that Penn State bestows on a faculty member.
Star Is Discovered To Be a Close Neighbor of the Sun and the Coldest of Its Kind
25 April 2014A "brown dwarf" star that appears to be the coldest of its kind -- as frosty as Earth's North Pole -- has been discovered by a Penn State University astronomer using NASA's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE) and Spitzer Space Telescopes. Images from the space telescopes also pinpointed the object's distance at 7.2 light-years away, making it the fourth closest system to our Sun.
Solved: Mysteries of a Nearby Planetary System's Dynamics
22 April 2014Mysteries of one of the most fascinating nearby planetary systems now have been solved, report authors of a scientific paper to be published by the journal Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society in its early online edition on 22 April 2014. The study, which presents the first viable model for the planetary system orbiting one the first stars discovered to have planets - the star named 55 Cancri - was led by Penn State University graduate student Benjamin Nelson in collaboration with faculty at the Center for Exoplanets and Habitable Worlds at Penn State and five astronomers at other institutions in the United States and Germany.

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