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Frontiers - Nature
Criminology graduate student Jill Portnoy measures biological responses to stress.Blake Cole
Imagine you are waiting on the platform for a trolley. When it comes into view the driver is waving his arms in a panic as sparks fly from the rails. Glancing down the tracks, you see three rail workers whose demise is inevitable unless you halt the trolley … by pushing the person next to you onto the tracks.
Penn’s Medical Physics Graduate Program creates physicists who heal.Susan Ahlborn
In the last 25 years, new technology has exploded the possibilities in radiation oncology. The development of 3-D X-ray imaging (CT scan) gave doctors better images to choose the best treatment for their patients. Now they can also incorporate positron emission tomography (PET) and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) into their decision process.
By using Lyme disease bacteria to research evolution, Assistant Professor of Biology Dustin Brisson is advancing both science and medicine.Susan Ahlborn
“We do things from the bacteria’s point of view,” says Assistant Professor of Biology Dustin Brisson. “They have their own ecology, evolution, and natural history, and you have to treat them as such, not just as an infectious agent.”
Tom Lubensky and Charles Kane combine two distinct areas of physics in new research.Blake Cole
Topological insulators and isostatic lattices make strange bedfellows—or at least they seemed to until Tom Lubensky, Christopher H. Browne Distinguished Professor of Physics, started bugging his colleague Charles Kane about their similarities. Their eventual collaboration led to the recently published “Topological Boundary Modes in Isostatic Lattices” in Nature Physics.
Psychology researchers develop a tool that can weigh multiple variables in making treatment decisions.Susan Ahlborn
Robert DeRubeis had a problem. For years, as the Samuel H. Preston Term Professor in the Social Sciences and Chair of Psychology researched depression, he saw study after study that looked at just one variable of the treatment—for example, whether cognitive therapy or medication was better for patients who also had a personality disorder.
Baird Term Assistant Professor of Psychology Joseph Kable studies how we make decisions (or sometimes don’t).Susan Ahlborn
During this shopping season, have you found yourself standing frozen with a potential present in your hand, wondering if your mom would like it? It may feel like a tiny wrestling match, but what is actually going on in your brain?
Daniel Mindiola is finding new ways to harness greenhouse gases.Susan Ahlborn
What if greenhouse gasses are not the problem but the solution? Presidential Term Professor of Chemistry Daniel Mindiola sees a greener future, in which we use gases like methane and ethane to produce energy and other products.
Young scholars research cutting-edge topics at the 2013 Undergraduate Research Fair.Blake Cole, Jackie Van Loan, and Heidi Smith
Undergraduates in the School of Arts and Sciences reinforce the idea that students at any level can tackle complex issues with a fresh perspective. Each year, young scholars are given the opportunity to participate in the annual Undergraduate Research Fair, where they spotlight the topics they are most passionate about.
Senior Anand Muthusamy studies pain at the intersection of philosophy, science, and anthropology.Heidi Smith
Bodily pain is a universal aspect of human life, one we daily go great lengths to avoid. But something equally quotidian—sports—made senior biophysics major Anand Muthusamy curious. The athlete’s “no pain, no gain” mantra—Curt Schilling’s pitching with a bloody ankle during the 2004 World Series, for example—complicates the universality of pain.
Edmund J. and Louise W. Kahn Term Professor Adriana Petryna and Assistant Professor Etienne Benson discuss environmental disaster predictors.Blake Cole
In a recent issue of Limn, an online magazine featuring scholarly commentary on contemporary problems, Edmund J. and Louise W. Kahn Term Professor Adriana Petryna of Anthropology and Assistant Professor of History and Sociology of Science Etienne Benson offer their takes on the issue’s theme of sentinel devices, indicators that can aid in “preparation for an uncertain but potentially catastrophic future.”
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