Month: November 2016

Five Tips to Manage Holiday Stress as a Grad Student

Five Tips to Manage Holiday Stress as a Grad Student

The holidays can be stressful for a number of reasons. Take a minute to count up your own stressors. As a graduate student or burgeoning academic, do any of these ring a bell? Gift shopping Traveling Family visits   Seasonal blues Holiday weight gain  So,…

FSCV: Measuring Electrochemical Chatter

FSCV: Measuring Electrochemical Chatter

Measuring Chemical Chatter If a brain could talk, what would it say? Probably nothing profound or understandable. Rather, it would emit a bustling clamor of messages between neurons. These messages are delivered by chemicals called neurotransmitters. Different groups of neurotransmitters serve unique roles in the…

In Almost Living Color: The First Colored Electron Micrographs of Cells

In Almost Living Color: The First Colored Electron Micrographs of Cells

The electron microscope (EM) was first tested by Max Knoll and Ernst Ruska at the Berlin Technische Hochschule in 1931, remarkably overcoming the resolution limits of visible light for the first time. Modern electron microscopes can magnify objects up to 10 million times their size, and have…

Dr. Margaret Scarry Named New Director of the Research Labs of Archaeology

Dr. Margaret Scarry Named New Director of the Research Labs of Archaeology

Congratulations to Dr. Margaret Scarry! A longstanding faculty member of the Anthropology Department at UNC-CH, Dr. Scarry was recently promoted to the Director of the Research Labs of Archaeology (RLA) and Chair of the Curriculum in Archaeology. Having received her PhD from the University of…

Bionic Plants Detect Explosive Chemicals

Bionic Plants Detect Explosive Chemicals

Imagine a future where the plants in your garden not only grow delicious vegetables, but keep an eye on the soil and water conditions while they’re at it. Is the ground too acidic? Are there toxins present in the water? It would be pretty handy…

UNCseq: The Journey from Cancer Biopsy to Cable TV

UNCseq: The Journey from Cancer Biopsy to Cable TV

This past October, CBS 60 Minutes aired a feature on Artificial Intelligence. They were taking a peek into the world of Watson, a computer system developed by I.B.M that can answer questions framed in natural languages. The same 60 Minutes episode also featured Dr. Norman…

“You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means.”

“You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means.”

We all get that same question over and over again from everyone we meet — the old friend at the grocery store, an uncle at a family reunion, or even a stranger at the bus stop: “What do you do for a living?” If you’re…

The Amazing Microbiota of Brown Bears

The Amazing Microbiota of Brown Bears

Image a researcher has been tasked with studying how hibernation affects a bear’s microbiota, or the collection of microorganisms residing on and in an organism. The researcher begins his day tracking brown bears until he finally finds one in a cave. His trusty veterinarian partner…

Lacking Nobel-ity

Lacking Nobel-ity

Do you want to learn about how the material of pants affects the sex life of rats?  Or about the different personalities of rocks? How about someone who invented prosthetic limbs to mimic the movement of goats? These are only a few examples of hilarious…

Exercise and Immune Response: An Overview

Exercise and Immune Response: An Overview

The relationship between exercise intensity (or volume) and susceptibility to upper respiratory tract infection (URTI) is a rotated J-shaped curve.  This means that some regular moderate physical activity decreases the relative risk of infection below that of a sedentary individual.  However, high intensity exercise or…