Tag Archives: north carolina state university

Study: CT Scans Could Bolster Forensic Database to ID Unidentified Remains

A study from North Carolina State University finds that data from CT scans can be incorporated into a growing forensic database to help determine the ancestry and sex of unidentified remains. The finding may also have clinical applications for craniofacial surgeons.

“As forensic anthropologists, we can map specific coordinates on a skull and use software that we developed – called 3D-ID – to compare those three-dimensional coordinates with a database of biological characteristics,” says Dr. Ann Ross, a professor of anthropology at NC State and senior author of a paper describing the work. “That comparison can tell us the ancestry and sex of unidentified remains using only the skull – which is particularly valuable when dealing with incomplete skeletal remains.” (more…)

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Researchers ID Queens, Mysterious Disease Syndrome as Key Factors in Bee Colony Deaths

A new long-term study of honey bee health has found that a little-understood disease study authors are calling “idiopathic brood disease syndrome” (IBDS), which kills off bee larvae, is the largest risk factor for predicting the death of a bee colony.

“Historically, we’ve seen symptoms similar to IBDS associated with viruses spread by large-scale infestations of parasitic mites,” says Dr. David Tarpy, an associate professor of entomology at North Carolina State University and co-author of a paper describing the study. “But now we’re seeing these symptoms – a high percentage of larvae deaths – in colonies that have relatively few of these mites. That suggests that IBDS is present even in colonies with low mite loads, which is not what we expected.” The study was conducted by researchers from NC State, the University of Maryland, Pennsylvania State University and the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). (more…)

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Researchers ‘Nanoweld’ by Applying Light to Aligned Nanorods in Solid Materials

Researchers from North Carolina State University have developed a way to melt or “weld” specific portions of polymers by embedding aligned nanoparticles within the materials. Their technique, which melts fibers along a chosen direction within a material, may lead to stronger, more resilient nanofibers and materials.

Physicists Jason Bochinski and Laura Clarke, with materials scientist Joe Tracy, placed specifically aligned gold nanorods within a solid material. Gold nanorods absorb light at different wavelengths, depending upon the size and orientation of the nanorod, and then they convert that absorbed light directly into heat. In this case, the nanorods were designed to respond to light wavelengths of 520 nanometers (nm) in a horizontal alignment and 800 nm when vertically aligned. Human beings can see light at 520 nm (it looks green), while 808 nm is in the near infrared spectrum, invisible to our eyes. (more…)

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New Technique Controls Crystalline Structure of Titanium Dioxide

Researchers from North Carolina State University have developed a new technique for controlling the crystalline structure of titanium dioxide at room temperature. The development should make titanium dioxide more efficient in a range of applications, including photovoltaic cells, hydrogen production, antimicrobial coatings, smart sensors and optical communication technologies.

Titanium dioxide most commonly comes in one on of two major “phases,” meaning that its atoms arrange themselves in one of two crystalline structures. These phases are “anatase” or “rutile.” The arrangement of atoms dictates the material’s optical, chemical and electronic properties. As a result, each phase has different characteristics. The anatase phase has characteristics that make it better suited for use as an antibacterial agent and for applications such as hydrogen production. The rutile phase is better suited for use in other applications, such as photovoltaic cells, smart sensors and optical communication technologies. (more…)

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Study Shows How The Brain Responds To Deceptive Advertising

Several specific regions of our brains are activated in a two-part process when we are exposed to deceptive advertising, according to new research conducted by a North Carolina State University professor. The work opens the door to further research that could help us understand how brain injury and aging may affect our susceptibility to fraud or misleading marketing.

The study utilized functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to capture images of the brain while study participants were shown a series of print advertisements. The fMRI images allowed researchers to determine how consumers’ brains respond to potentially deceptive advertising. “We did not instruct participants to evaluate the ads. We wanted to mimic the passive exposure to advertising that we all experience every day,” says Dr. Stacy Wood, Langdon Distinguished Professor of Marketing at NC State and co-author of a paper describing the research. (more…)

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New Mouse Reference Library Should Speed Gene Discoveries

Genetic information provided by a large group of specially designed mice could pave the way to faster human health discoveries and transform the ways people battle and prevent disease.

In 15 papers published Feb. 16 in the Genetics Society of America journals Genetics and G3:Genes/Genomes/Genetics, researchers from North Carolina State University, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, The Jackson Laboratory and other universities and labs across the globe highlight a new genetic resource that could aid development of more effective treatments for any number of human diseases. (more…)

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Researchers Devise New Means For Creating Elastic Conductors

Researchers from North Carolina State University have developed a new method for creating elastic conductors made of carbon nanotubes, which will contribute to large-scale production of the material for use in a new generation of elastic electronic devices.

“We’re optimistic that this new approach could lead to large-scale production of stretchable conductors, which would then expedite research and development of elastic electronic devices,” says Dr. Yong Zhu, an assistant professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering at NC State, and lead author of a paper describing the new technique. (more…)

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Cockroach Hookup Signal Could Benefit Endangered Woodpecker

A North Carolina State University discovery of the unique chemical composition of a cockroach signal – a “Let’s hook up” sex pheromone emitted by certain female wood cockroaches to entice potential mates – could have far-ranging benefits, including improved conservation of an endangered woodpecker.

Dr. Coby Schal, Blanton J. Whitmire Professor of Entomology at NC State and the corresponding author of a paper describing the discovery, says that the study, published the week of Dec. 19 in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, advances the knowledge of fundamental biological and chemical properties of an important North American cockroach genus that serves as both a beneficial forest insect and as a pest in homes. (more…)

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