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Latest Brandeis University Stories

2005-08-30 14:47:03

A team of biomedical researchers from Brandeis University and the University of Texas at Austin has determined the first 3-dimensional structure of an enzyme that may be pivotal in preventing certain bacterial infections in plants, animals and humans, according to a study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. The enzyme had already been shown in previous studies to significantly decrease soft rot in potato plants. The Brandeis and University of Texas team purified...

2005-08-29 15:57:19

Waltham, Mass. "“ In a new study, Brandeis University researchers conclude that older adults with mild-to-moderate hearing loss may expend so much cognitive energy on hearing accurately that their ability to remember spoken language suffers as a result. The study, published in Current Directions in Psychological Science, showed that even when older adults could hear words well enough to repeat them, their ability to memorize and remember these words was poorer in comparison to other...

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2005-07-11 18:54:30

Waltham, Mass. "“ A Brandeis University researcher has shown that an African grey parrot with a walnut-sized brain understands a numerical concept akin to zero "“ an abstract notion that humans don't typically understand until age three or four, and that can significantly challenge learning-disabled children Strikingly, Alex, the 28-year-old parrot who lives in a Brandeis lab run by comparative psychologist and cognitive scientist Dr. Irene Pepperberg, spontaneously and correctly...

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2005-07-10 17:00:00

During the course of human evolution, our ancestors eventually grasped the abstract concept of counting nothing, or 'zero'. Is this a unique component of human intelligence? Or does one of the most sophisticated abstractions discovered yet among animals tell us anything about the evolution of intelligence, on Earth or elsewhere? Astrobiology Magazine -- A Brandeis University researcher has shown that an African grey parrot with a walnut-sized brain understands a numerical concept akin to zero...

2005-07-07 14:32:22

Waltham, MA "“ A new study of the disease burden of dengue fever in Malaysia strengthens the case for development of a vaccine against the mosquito-borne illness. Despite the nation's efforts at treatment and control, 10,000 cases are reported each year at a l cost of almost $13 million, slightly less than half for vector control and the rest for treating hospitalized patients with dengue fever, an often painful and sometimes fatal virus. These costs are equivalent to 940,000 lost...

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2005-06-15 18:37:21

Turning on a single male-specific gene produces a female fruit fly that displays male courtship behaviors: chasing other females, tapping their abdomens and performing wing-beating love serenades. The results, published in the June 15 online edition of the journal Nature, show that a single gene can determine how females and males detect and respond differently to sexual cues. ''In these experiments we see all the steps of the male courtship ritual you could physically expect a female fly to...

2005-06-09 20:19:23

Despite the age-old admonition not to "judge a book by its cover," we routinely make important judgments about human traits based on instant, superficial impressions of peoples' faces. Such "blink of an eye" decision-making predicted the outcome of about 70 percent of recent U.S. Senate races, according to a new study in Science this week. According to the study, candidates who looked "competent" prevailed in congressional elections more than two-thirds of the time. In a review of the study,...


Word of the Day
sough
  • A murmuring sound; a rushing or whistling sound, like that of the wind; a deep sigh.
  • A gentle breeze; a waft; a breath.
  • Any rumor that engages general attention.
  • A cant or whining mode of speaking, especially in preaching or praying; the chant or recitative characteristic of the old Presbyterians in Scotland.
  • To make a rushing, whistling, or sighing sound; emit a hollow murmur; murmur or sigh like the wind.
  • To breathe in or as in sleep.
  • To utter in a whining or monotonous tone.
According to the OED, from the 16th century, this word is 'almost exclusively Scots and northern dialect until adopted in general literary use in the 19th.'
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