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‘Repurposed’ anti-parasite drug shows promise as new TB treatment: UBC research

November 22, 2012

A well-established family of drugs used to treat parasitic diseases is showing surprising potential as a therapy for tuberculosis (TB), according to new research from University of British Columbia microbiologists.

Eating right key to survival of whales and dolphins: UBC research

November 21, 2012

In the marine world, high-energy prey make for high-energy predators. And to survive, such marine predators need to sustain the right kind of high-energy diet. Not just any prey will do, suggests a new study by researchers from the University of British Columbia and University of La Rochelle, in France. Published today in the online journal PLOS ONE, the study is the first to show that the survival of whales and dolphins depends on the quality of their diets and this plays an important role in conservation.

UBC professor wins Canada’s top pharmaceutical research award

November 19, 2012

UBC microbiologist Robert E.W. Hancock has received the Prix Galien 2012 Research Award, widely considered the most prestigious honour in Canadian pharmaceutical research and innovation. Hancock is being recognized for pioneering work unravelling the complex interactions between antibiotics and bacteria.

UBC’s commitment to science education underlined by $75M facility

November 16, 2012

The University of British Columbia today officially opens the new Earth Sciences Building, a state-of-the-art facility that will provide modern learning spaces for more than 7,000 students each year and leading-edge laboratories for hundreds of researchers.

UBC leads alliance to improve science education with Sloan grant

November 15, 2012

The University of British Columbia is partnering with seven top North American universities to study how they can speed up the adoption of improved teaching techniques in science classrooms. The Bay View Alliance (BVA) – which includes Queen’s University, University of California Davis, University of Kansas, University of Saskatchewan, Indiana University Bloomington, the University of Texas Austin and UBC – is launched today with $803,942 from the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation.

UBC gains Canada Excellence Research Chairs in quantum materials and digital media

November 8, 2012

UBC Science will be home to two more Canada Excellence Research Chairs (CERCs) valued at $20 million over seven years, in the areas of quantum materials and devices and digital media research and innovation. Results of the latest CERC competition were announced today by Gary Goodyear, Minister of State (Science and Technology) in Ottawa. Out of 46 research proposals submitted by 27 universities, eight universities were selected to recruit 11 chairholders to the program. The eight universities are now invited to nominate world-renowned researchers to carry out the proposed research.

“Genius grant” helps secure Okanagan habitats for at-risk species

November 2, 2012

University of British Columbia zoologist Sarah Otto is using her MacArthur “genius grant” toward preserving fragile habitats in the South Okanagan region of British Columbia. Two gifts of $50,000 each to The Nature Trust of BC and the Nature Conservancy of Canada will help purchase habitats for at-risk species of woodpeckers, sparrows, badgers, turtles, plants and trees. Otto was one of last year’s 22 MacArthur Fellows, who receive no-strings-attached grants of $500,000 over five years from the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation.

UBC ‘outnumbers’ Canadian competition

November 1, 2012

Eleven UBC mathematicians have been named to the inaugural class of American Mathematical Society (AMS) fellows--more than any other Canadian institution. Founded in 1888, the AMS seeks to further mathematical research and scholarship. The society’s Fellows designation recognizes members who have made outstanding contributions to the creation, exposition, advancement, communication and utilization of mathematics.

Park and charge: UBC researchers invent safe wireless vehicle charging technology

October 26, 2012

University of British Columbia researchers have invented a safe, efficient technology to wirelessly charge electric vehicles using “remote magnetic gears” – and successfully tested it on campus service vehicles. “Wireless charging has been a much sought-after technical solution for everything from cell phones to electric cars,” says UBC Physics Prof. Lorne Whitehead. “A significant concern for charging cars wirelessly has been the high power and high frequency electromagnetic fields and their unknown, potential health effects on humans.”

Fruit fly’s ‘sweet tooth’ is short-lived: UBC research

October 16, 2012

Those struggling with the temptations of chocolate-bar-laden store checkouts may have something to learn from the humble fruit fly. While the flies initially prefer food with a sweet flavour, they quickly learn to opt for less sweet food sources that offer more calories and nutritional value, according to new research by UBC zoologists. The findings - published this week in the Journal of Neuroscience - are the first to measure the shift in food preference over time, and the first to find that flies opt for nutritious food more quickly when they’re hungry.

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