A quirk of nature has long baffled biologists: Why do animals push in directions that don’t point toward their goal, like the side-to-side sashaying of a running lizard or cockroach? An engineer building a robot would likely avoid these movements because they seem wasteful. So why do animals behave this way? A multi-institutional research team, led by Johns Hopkins engineers, says it has solved this puzzle.
Recent news from The Johns Hopkins University
This section contains regularly updated highlights of the news from around The Johns Hopkins University. Links to the complete news reports from the nine schools, the Applied Physics Laboratory and other centers and institutes are to the left, as are links to help news media contact the Johns Hopkins communications offices.
Five Johns Hopkins graduate students, recently named to the 2014 class of Siebel Scholars, are pushing the boundaries of medical technology to develop new and improved ways to diagnose and treat cancer, heart disease and other serious health problems. The students are trying to turn stem cells into healthy blood vessels, are testing biological reactions within microscopic droplets and are using advanced imaging techniques to detect disease at an early, treatable stage.
In recognition of their research skills, academic achievements and leadership qualities, the five PhD candidates are being honored as Johns Hopkins’ 2014 Siebel Scholars. The merit-based Siebel program provides $35,000 to each student for use in his or her final year of graduate studies.
Johns Hopkins Researchers Find Sympathetic Neurons Engage in “Cross Talk” With Cells in the Pancreas During Early Development
The human body is a complicated system of blood vessels, nerves, organs, tissue and cells each with a specific job to do. When all are working together, it’s a symphony of form and function as each instrument plays its intended roles. Biologist Rejji Kuruvilla and her fellow researchers uncovered what happens when one instrument is not playing its part.
A Johns Hopkins University geologist has won the prestigious Young Scientist Award from the Geological Society of America for the contributions she has made to the understanding of the environments of early humans in Africa. Naomi Levin, an assistant professor, will receive her award at the geological society’s 125th anniversary conference in Denver on October 29.
Biophysics Research for Baltimore Teens, a paid summer internship program, aims to give city high school students from low-income communities a head start in science careers by exposing them to the thrills of university-level bio-medical lab work.
Three undergraduate researchers at The Johns Hopkins University are among the 271 students recently awarded Goldwater Scholarships for the 2013-2014 academic year. The one- and two-year funding the three Johns Hopkins students receive will help further their investigations in molecular dynamics, the biomedical science of disease, and developing a computational tool to help surgeons treat epilepsy.
With every sunrise and sunset, our eyes make note of the light as it waxes and wanes, a process that is critical to aligning our circadian rhythms to match the solar day so we are alert during the day and restful at night. Watching the sun come and go sounds like a peaceful process, but Johns Hopkins scientists have discovered that behind the scenes, millions of specialized cells in our eyes are fighting for their lives to help the retina set the stage to keep our internal clocks ticking.
Lay Kodama, a Johns Hopkins University senior from Columbus, Ohio, has been selected as a Churchill Scholar by the Winston Churchill Foundation of the United States. The Churchill Scholarship is awarded to 14 students nationwide who have demonstrated a capacity to contribute to the advancement of knowledge in the sciences, engineering or mathematics by completing original, creative work at an advanced level.
Storing music and photos on distant computers via “cloud” technology is nothing new. But Johns Hopkins researchers are now using this tactic to collect detailed information from thousands of cancer cell samples. The goal is to help doctors make better predictions about how a patient’s illness will progress and what type of treatment will be most effective.
You are what you eat, and that seems to have been as true two million years ago, when our pre-human relatives were swinging through the trees and racing across the savannas of South Africa, as it is today. A study done by a team that included Johns Hopkins University geochemist Benjamin Passey and published in today’s issue of the journal Nature reveals that Australopithecus sediba, an ape-like creature with human features living in a region about 50 miles northwest of today’s Johannesburg, exclusively consumed fruits, leaves and other forest-based foods, even though its habitat was near grassy savanna with its rich variety of savory sedges, tasty tubers and even juicy animals.
Johns Hopkins researchers have discovered that a single protein molecule may hold the key to turning cardiac stem cells into blood vessels or muscle tissue, a finding that may lead to better ways to treat heart attack patients.
Two swimming strokes—one that pulls through the water like a boat paddle and another that whirls to the side like a propeller—are commonly used by athletes training for the Olympic Games. But elite swimmers and their coaches have long argued over which arm motion is more likely to propel an aquatic star toward a medal. A university research study has picked a winner.
In life, we sort soiled laundry from clean; ripe fruit from rotten. Two Johns Hopkins engineers say they have found an easy way to use gravity or simple forces to similarly sort microscopic particles and bits of biological matter—including circulating tumor cells.
Amid growing concerns about the spread of harmful mercury in plants and animals, a new study by researchers from The Johns Hopkins University and The National Aquarium has compared levels of the chemical in captive dolphins with dolphins found in the wild. The captive animals were fed a controlled diet, while the wild mammals dined on marine life that may carry more of the toxic metal.