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Latest University of Alberta Stories

2011-03-23 13:34:18

A University of Alberta-led research team has discovered that insects that bore into trees as long ago 90 million years, or as recently as last summer, leave a calling card that's rich with information. The information is contained in the resin found within trees and on their bark. Resin is produced in large quantities by a tree when it's under attack by insects. Normally, to assess if a tree is under an attack from boring insects researchers have sometimes had to rip patches of bark from...

2011-03-21 12:56:59

Patients with kidney cancer who had their entire organ removed were more likely to have more renal complications and poorer health after surgery, compared to those who had only part of their kidney removed, a study has shown. Ronald Moore, a professor in the Department of Surgery, a senior scholar funded by Alberta Innovates "“ Health Solutions, holder of the Mr. Lube Chair in Uro-Oncology and a practising surgeon, studied 1,151 kidney cancer cases in Alberta, with his colleagues Scott...

2011-03-15 20:21:48

University of Alberta researchers have determined that the influence of northern peatlands on the prehistorical record of climate change has been over estimated, but the vast northern wetlands must still be watched closely as the planet grapples with its current global warming trend. Northern peatlands, which are a boggy mixture of dead organic material and water, cover more than four million square kilometers. The largest northern peatlands occur in the subarctic regions of Canada and...

2011-03-11 16:56:38

A longstanding debate as to whether genius is a byproduct of good genes or good environment has an upstart challenger that may take the discussion in an entirely new direction. University of Alberta researcher Marty Mrazik says being bright may be due to an excess level of a natural hormone. Mrazik, a professor in the Faculty of Education's educational psychology department, and a colleague from Rider University in the U.S., have published a paper in Roeper Review linking giftedness (having...

2011-02-24 23:37:54

After three years of exhaustive analysis led by a University of Alberta researcher, the list of known compounds in human blood has exploded from just a handful to more than 4,000. "Right now a medical doctor analyzing the blood of an ailing patient looks at something like 10 to 20 chemicals," said U of A biochemist David Wishart. "We've identified 4,229 blood chemicals that doctors can potentially look at to diagnose and treat health problems." Blood chemicals, or metabolites, are routinely...

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2011-02-08 18:35:00

University of Alberta researchers P©ter Molnár, Andrew Derocher and Mark Lewis studied the reproductive ecology of polar bears in Hudson Bay and have linked declining litter sizes with loss of sea ice.The researchers say projected reductions in the number of newborn cubs is a significant threat to the western Hudson Bay polar-bear population, and if climate change continues unabated the viability of the species across much of the Arctic will be in question.Using data collected since...

2011-01-28 00:05:50

University of Alberta researchers determined that a fossilized dinosaur bone found in New Mexico confounds the long established paradigm that the age of dinosaurs ended between 65.5 and 66 million years ago. The U of A team, led by Larry Heaman from the Department of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences, determined the femur bone of a hadrosaur as being only 64.8 million years old. That means this particular plant eater was alive about 700,000 years after the mass extinction event many...

2011-01-11 13:40:27

Persistence paid off for a University of Alberta paleontology researcher, who after months of pondering the origins of a fossilized jaw bone, finally identified it as a new species of pterosaur, a flying reptile that lived 70 million years ago. Victoria Arbour says she was stumped when the small piece of jaw bone was first pulled out of of a fossil storage cabinet in the U of A's paleontology department. "It could have been from a dinosaur, a fish or a marine reptile," said Arbour. " Arbour,...

2010-12-08 21:58:17

Gaining entry to play, feeling like a legitimate participant and having friends cited as key to feeling included for kids with disabilities The playground can be a daunting place for any kid trying to join in and be one of the gang. For kids with disabilities it's just as important to feel included, be accepted and valued "“ particularly by their peers. In a study to understand the perspectives of children with disabilities around inclusion in physical activities during free play,...

2010-12-08 02:21:24

Questionnaire results and DNA samples volunteered by a group of University of Alberta students has broken new ground in the study of aggression. U of A Psychology researcher Peter Hurd was looking at the link between an individual's sensitivity to testosterone and aggressive behaviour. "I looked at the gene that makes the body's testosterone detector to determine if variations in this detector's sensitivity to the chemical causes people to be more or less aggressive," said Hurd. Hurd came...


Word of the Day
pungle
  • To take pains; labor assiduously with little progress.
This word comes from the Spanish 'pongale,' put it.
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