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Latest University of Wisconsin Stories

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2011-01-25 07:35:00

Future queen or tireless toiler? A paper wasp's destiny may lie in the antennal drumbeats of its caretaker. While feeding their colony's larvae, a paper wasp queen and other dominant females periodically beat their antennae in a rhythmic pattern against the nest chambers, a behavior known as antennal drumming. The drumming behavior is clearly audible even to human listeners and has been observed for decades, prompting numerous hypotheses about its purpose, says Robert Jeanne, a professor...

2011-01-19 14:34:50

A cold dose of fear lends an edge to the here-and-now "” say, when things go bump in the night. "That edge sounds good. It sounds adaptive. It sounds like perception is enhanced and that it can keep you safe in the face of danger," says Alexander Shackman, a researcher at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. But it sounds like there's also a catch, one that Shackman and his coauthors "” including Richard Davidson, UW-Madison psychology and psychiatry professor "” described...

2011-01-06 00:01:43

Shine Advertising Showcases UW Health's Extraordinary Patient Care Madison, WI (PRWEB) January 5, 2011 For years, UW Health has been a champion of excellence and innovation in the health sciences. Achieving breakthroughs in medicine and health care and pioneering innovative treatments, UW Health has represented world-class medical care, right here in your own backyard. Shine Advertising was recently asked to develop a statewide marketing campaign that illuminates the unsurpassed medical...

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2010-12-23 08:10:00

To survive in a tumultuous environment, sea urchins literally eat through stone, using their teeth to carve out nooks where the spiny creatures hide from predators and protect themselves from the crashing surf on the rocky shores and tide pools where they live. The rock-boring behavior is astonishing, scientists agree, but what is truly remarkable is that, despite constant grinding and scraping on stone, urchin teeth never, ever get dull. The secret of their ever-sharp qualities has puzzled...

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2010-12-21 08:48:16

A popular herbal supplement viewed by many as a way to beat the common cold actually has minimal effect in dealing with the illness, researchers from the University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Medicine and Public Health said on Monday. In a randomized trial, Bruce Barrett, an associate professor of family medicine at UW-Madison, and his colleagues selected over 700 people between the ages of 12 and 80, each of whom were in the early stages of a cold. The study participants were separated...

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2010-12-15 23:16:46

It's one of the more frustrating parts of summer. You check the weather forecast, see nothing dramatic, and go hiking or biking. Then, four hours later, a thunderstorm appears out of nowhere and ruins your afternoon.Thunderstorms can bring intense rain, hail, lightning and even tornadoes, but "predicting them a few hours out is one of the great problems of meteorology," says Chian-Yi Liu, a postdoctoral researcher at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.And the consequences can be more serious...

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2010-12-14 10:25:00

Those who choose to pray find personalized comfort during hard times, according to a University of Wisconsin-Madison sociologist. The 75 percent of Americans who pray on a weekly basis do so to manage a range of negative situations and emotions "” illness, sadness, trauma and anger "” but just how they find relief has gone unconsidered by researchers. Through the course of in-depth interviews with dozens of victims of violent relationships with intimate partners, Shane Sharp, a...

2010-12-08 15:05:49

The "A" grades that high schoolers earn aren't just good for making the honor roll "” they also make them healthier as adults, too. Studies have long shown that education is linked to better health, but new research by Pamela Herd, an associate professor of public affairs and sociology at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, shows that higher academic performance in high school plays a critical role in better health throughout life. "How well you do in school matters," Herd says about...

2010-12-07 13:56:50

Bacteria are among the simplest organisms in nature, but many of them can still talk to each other, using a chemical "language" that is critical to the process of infection. Sending and receiving chemical signals allows bacteria to mind their own business when they are scarce and vulnerable, and then mount an attack after they become numerous enough to overwhelm the host's immune system. This system, called "quorum sensing," is an interesting example of sophistication among microbes, says...

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2010-12-07 10:20:00

A new laser-beam steering system that aims and focuses bursts of light onto single atoms for use in quantum computers has been demonstrated by collaborating researchers from Duke University and the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Described in the journal Applied Physics Letters, published by the American Institute of Physics, the new system is somewhat like the laser-light-show projectors used at rock concerts and planetariums. But it's much smaller, faster, atom-scale accurate and aimed at...


Word of the Day
siliqua
  • A Roman unit of weight, 1⁄1728 of a pound.
  • A weight of four grains used in weighing gold and precious stones; a carat.
  • In anatomy, a formation suggesting a husk or pod.
  • The lowest unit in the Roman coinage, the twenty-fourth part of a solidus.
  • A coin of base silver of the Gothic and Lombard kings of Italy.
'Siliqua' comes from a Latin word meaning 'a pod.'
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