Tag Archives: Berkeley

A Closer Look at the Perfect Fluid

Researchers at Berkeley Lab and their collaborators have honed a way to probe the quark-gluon plasma, the kind of matter that dominated the universe immediately after the big bang.

By combining data from two high-energy accelerators, nuclear scientists have refined the measurement of a remarkable property of exotic matter known as quark-gluon plasma. The findings reveal new aspects of the ultra-hot, “perfect fluid” that give clues to the state of the young universe just microseconds after the big bang. (more…)

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‘Life as Research Scientist’: Taichi Suzuki, Evolutionary Biologist

Taichi Suzuki, an Evolutionary Biologist, is currently involved in PhD program in Integrative Biology at the University of California Berkeley. He received his Bachelor’s degree from the Nihon University in Japan and completed Master’s in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at The University of Arizona. He is also associated with Museum of Vertebrate Zoology at UC Berkeley.

So, let’s join Mr. Suzuki to our latest round of interviews on ‘Life as research scientist’:

Q. Let us start with your research topic. What is your research area? Will you please tell us a bit more on this? What did you find?

Taichi Suzuki: My research topic is focused on ‘Host associated microbial ecology’. I am interested in understanding how symbiotic microbial community affects host (e.g. animals) health and evolution. I found correlation between obese-associated gut microbial community composition and geography (i.e. latitude). (more…)

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Obesity-Related Gut Bacteria Higher in People in Northern Climes

People living in northern latitudes have more gut bacteria linked to obesity compared with people living in southern latitudes, a new study has found.

People living in cold, northern latitudes have bacteria in their guts that may predispose them to obesity, according to a new study by researchers at the University of Arizona and the University of California, Berkeley. (more…)

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Puzzling Question in Bacterial Immune System Answered

Berkeley Researchers Uncover the Key to Self-Awareness in Genome Editor

A central question has been answered regarding a protein that plays an essential role in the bacterial immune system and is fast becoming a valuable tool for genetic engineering. A team of researchers with the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) and the University of California (UC) Berkeley have determined how the bacterial enzyme known as Cas9, guided by RNA, is able to identify and degrade foreign DNA during viral infections, as well as induce site-specific genetic changes in animal and plant cells. Through a combination of single-molecule imaging and bulk biochemical experiments, the research team has shown that the genome-editing ability of Cas9 is made possible by the presence of short DNA sequences known as “PAM,” for protospacer adjacent motif. (more…)

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Cool heads likely won’t prevail in a hotter, wetter world

Should climate change trigger the upsurge in heat and rainfall that scientists predict, people may face a threat just as perilous and volatile as extreme weather — each other.

Researchers from Princeton University and the University of California-Berkeley report in the journal Science that even slight spikes in temperature and precipitation have greatly increased the risk of personal violence and social upheaval throughout human history. Projected onto an Earth that is expected to warm by 2 degrees Celsius by 2050, the authors suggest that more human conflict is a likely outcome of climate change. (more…)

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More women pick computer science if media nix outdated ‘nerd’ stereotype

Parents and teachers like to tell children they can be whatever they want to be when they grow up. But are there inaccurate stereotypes in the media that nudge them away from certain careers?

University of Washington psychologist Sapna Cheryan wanted to know if gendered stereotypes had any effect on young women’s interest in becoming computer scientists. Specifically, she and colleagues studied whether the stereotypical view of the geeky male nerd so often portrayed in the media, most recently in CBS’s “The Big Bang Theory,” discouraged women from pursuing computer science degrees. (more…)

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Using IBM’s Crowdsourced Supercomputer, Harvard Rates Solar Energy Potential of 2.3 Million New Compounds

White House Applauds Citizen Science, Big Data Initiative

CAMBRIDGE, MA – 24 Jun 2013: The search for more versatile and less expensive materials for solar energy received a boost today as Harvard launched a free database that catalogues the suitability of 2.3 million organic, carbon compounds for converting sunlight into electricity.

Harvard’s Clean Energy project — which screened the molecules using World Community Grid, an IBM-managed virtual supercomputer that harnesses the surplus computer power donated by volunteers — is believed to be the most extensive investigation of quantum chemicals ever performed. (more…)

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UA Grows Gourmet Mushrooms That Recycle Waste

UA plant scientists are growing gourmet mushrooms on coffee grounds, landscape waste, even pizza boxes – and reducing that waste to compost.

The University of Arizona class is called “Mushrooms, Molds and Man.” Intrigued, undergraduate Lauren Jackson decided to learn about “Kingdom Fungi” and its impact on the world.

He was hooked in a heartbeat. Barely into the course, “I just raised my hand and asked about research opportunities.” That week he started working in the lab with UA mycologist Barry Pryor. (more…)

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