Connecting Science and Society
The state of Michigan is experiencing numerous environmental threats, risking the health and wellbeing of its residents. STEM professionals are urgently needed to help solve these problems and mitigate the impending public health disasters. However, the number of students graduating with STEM degrees in the state has been declining. Researchers at Siena Heights University are addressing this need through their teaching and development program, SHAPE STEM, which aims to increase the recruitment and retention of low-income academically talented students in STEM subjects.
Tropical forests and marine ecosystems in the Caribbean are biodiversity hotspots and home to many species found nowhere else on Earth. Increasing environmental stress from a changing climate, such as hurricanes, temperature rises and droughts, threaten to irreparably alter these precious systems. Coupled with ongoing pressures from human activities, some of these areas are especially at risk. Dr Jess Zimmerman and his colleagues at the University of Puerto Rico and throughout the US aim to provide the basis for predicting the future of these ecosystems, through their research at the Luquillo Experimental Forest in north-eastern Puerto Rico.
Genetically modified crops can offer a range of environmental and health benefits, such as reduced usage of chemical pesticides, improved farm efficiency and crop yields, and an enhanced nutritional profile. Despite this, fears surrounding genetic modification have led to a lack of acceptance of these foods by many consumers, regulators, and governmental organisations. Dr Richard Goodman from the Food Allergy Research and Resource Program at the University of Nebraska–Lincoln, is helping to shift the narrative around genetically modified crops, through his extensive work evaluating their safety.
Professor David Magnuson, at the University of Louisville, Kentucky, describes himself as ‘a CPG guy’ and occasionally, more informally as ‘a rat guy!’ His work on the function of the central pattern generator (CPG) in the rat spinal cord following spinal cord injury, has produced both surprising and thought-provoking results. This research may ultimately challenge the established clinical beliefs and practices around the ways to best rehabilitate human patients with severe spinal cord injury.
Professor Kim Dale | Dr Hedda Meijer – The Role of Notch Signalling within the Molecular Clock in the Early Development of the Skeleton
Cells possess the ability to interact with one another through complex signalling pathways. Different signals regulate how cells differentiate, undergoing modifications that ultimately allow them to adopt different cell fates and perform specific functions. The laboratory of Professor Kim Dale from the University of Dundee, Scotland, has made seminal contributions to our understanding of how the Notch signalling pathway controls the formation of tissues and organs in the earliest stages of development. Their important research has unveiled new insights into the molecular basis of Notch signalling in the context of normal development which will further our understanding of the molecular basis of developmental disorders and a multitude of diseases correlated with aberrant Notch signalling.
Pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDA) is an aggressive type of cancer. It is relatively common and is one of the leading causes of cancer mortality. Unfortunately, it is often detected only in the late stage of the disease and fails to respond to pre-surgical approaches, such as chemotherapy or radiotherapy, that are needed to shrink the tumour mass before surgical removal. Dr Scott Gerber at the University of Rochester Medical Center, USA, is working with colleagues to develop a novel combined therapy to overcome this issue and increase the survival of PDA patients.
BREAKING BOUNDARIES IN PHYSICS & TECHNOLOGY In this exciting edition of Scientia, we showcase some of the latest discoveries and innovations across the interconnected fields of engineering, technology and the physical sciences. To begin,...
BUILDING BRIGHTER FUTURES THROUGH INNOVATION IN PSYCHOLOGY AND NEUROSCIENCE This important and timely issue of Scientia showcases the scientists striving to build brighter futures for humankind through their pioneering endeavours across...
NEW HORIZONS IN EARTH SCIENCE AND ASTRONOMY In these challenging and uncertain times, it is with great pleasure that I introduce this captivating edition of Scientia, which showcases a diverse collection of research, on topics ranging from climate change...
Dr Malcolm Doupe | Dr Frode F. Jacobsen – Ending the Revolving Door of Emergency Department Visits for Older Adults
‘Health is merely the slowest possible rate at which one can die’ (Anonymous). Old age faces us all (if we are fortunate), but while we are generally living longer, we are not necessarily living that extended time being healthy. Older adults are now the fastest-growing segment of the population worldwide, and internationally, healthcare systems are scrambling to cope with the new demands this will bring. Here, we review the work of long-time research collaborators Dr Malcolm Doupe (University of Manitoba) and Dr Frode F. Jacobsen (Western Norway University of Applied Sciences) to address these fundamental issues.
Professor Carl Borrebaeck | Dr Ulrika Axelsson – Finding the Molecular Fingerprint of Psychological Resilience in Breast Cancer Patients
Professor Carl Borrebaeck and Dr Ulrika Axelsson are Director and Deputy Director, respectively, of the CREATE Health Translational Cancer Centre, Lund University, Sweden; a venue with an outstanding record of world-class cancer research. They are leading research into the fascinating topic of whether cancer patients’ psychological resilience after their cancer diagnosis may be linked to biomolecular processes, suggesting a mind-body link between the ability to cope psychologically and its impact on cancer prognosis.
Republish our articles
We encourage all formats of sharing and republishing of our articles. Whether you want to host on your website, publication or blog, we welcome this. Find out more
SciComm Corner – Striking the balance between severity and optimism when communicating climate change
As the main characters go about their everyday lives, a science reporter appears on a news feed in the background, their voice barely perceptible above the casual chatter that we are focused on. In a grave and slightly exasperated tone, they give the observant viewer the raw facts about whichever asteroid, outbreak, or tectonic reshuffling is about to finish off civilisation as we know it. Infuriatingly, the characters in the film don’t seem to be paying them even the slightest attention. It makes us want to shout at the screen, desperately willing them to notice the real problem at hand.
BARRIER FREE POLICY
No pay walls. No subscription walls. No language barrier. Simple instant public access to science – opening a dialogue between science and society.
OPEN ACCESS POLICY
Scientia adheres to the open access policy. Open Access (OA) stands for unrestricted access and unrestricted reuse.