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Latest University of Zurich Stories

roots of human altruism
2014-08-29 03:00:23

Judith Burkart, University of Zurich Apes hardly ever act selflessly without being solicited by others; humans often do. What has caused this curious divergence, which is arguably the secret to our species’ unparalleled success? A team headed by an anthropologist from the University of Zurich now reveals that cooperative care for the young was the evolutionary precondition for the emergence of spontaneous altruistic behavior. Scientists have long been searching for the factor that...

Stored Carbohydrates Make Trees More Resistant To Drought
2014-06-30 03:41:47

University of Zurich How well tropical trees weather periods of drought depends on the carbohydrates stored, as revealed by a novel experiment conducted by an international team of researchers headed by ecologists from the University of Zurich in contribution to the University Research Priority Program on “Global Change and Biodiversity”. The findings are extremely important for assessing the resistance of tropical forests to climate change and reforestation. Water is the limiting...

2014-03-12 11:36:56

Humans are often infected by parasites, sometimes even several species at a time. Such co-infections are more difficult to treat if the parasites interact with each other. An ecologist from the University of Zurich and his international team have compiled a list of the numerous possibilities as to how parasites can interact: They are most likely to do so indirectly via the food source they share. Over 1,400 species of parasites – viruses, bacteria, fungi, intestinal worms and protozoa...

2014-01-22 11:09:41

In Europe as well as worldwide, cocaine is the second most frequently used drug after cannabis. Chronic cocaine users display worse memory performance, concentration difficulties, and attentional deficits but also their social skills are affected as previous studies at the Psychiatric Hospital of the University of Zurich suggested. These investigations also revealed that cocaine users have difficulties to take the mental perspective of others, show less emotional empathy, find it more...

2013-12-11 12:29:51

85 out of every 100 people in Switzerland have access to the internet. Internet usage is on the rise, with even 70 percent of senior citizens going online. However, the concerns about using the internet are still substantial ─ for example with regard to companies monitoring the data. In general, young people are less worried and women are more concerned about protecting their privacy. These are the results of a study carried out by the Institute of Mass Communication and Media Research...

2013-11-25 15:15:08

Glioblastoma is one of the most ominous brain tumors. Despite aggressive surgery, radiation and chemotherapy the outcome of this disease is almost always fatal. A UZH research team has now achieved success with a novel form of treatment that involves encouraging the body’s own immune system to recognise and eliminate cancer cells in the brain. Animal experiments show that it is relatively easy to treat cancer in the early stages. However, it is far more difficult to successfully treat...

Ancient Skull Of Human Ancestor Implies All Homo Species Were One
2013-10-18 06:36:29

[ Watch the Video: Ancient Homo Species Were Merely Variations On A Theme ] redOrbit Staff & Wire Reports - Your Universe Online An analysis of a 1.8 million-year-old human skull suggests that the earliest members of our Homo genus actually belonged to a single species, a finding that contradics previous beliefs that there were several different human species walking the Earth during that time. The fossil, which was unearthed in Dmanisi, Georgia, is the first complete skull of an...

Fossil Fish Reveals New Evolutionary Body Elongation Mechanism
2013-10-08 04:46:25

redOrbit Staff & Wire Reports - Your Universe Online A third, previously unidentified reason for the extreme elongation of snake and eel bodies has been discovered by a team of University of Zurich paleontologists who published their findings Monday in the journal Nature Communications. The lengthy, slender and flexible bodies possessed by these creatures have evolved many times independently in the over 500 million years of vertebrate animal history, the study authors explained....

2013-10-07 12:14:14

Biologists of the University of Zurich have developed a method to visualize the activity of genes in single cells. The method is so efficient that, for the first time, a thousand genes can be studied in parallel in ten thousand single human cells. Applications lie in fields of basic research and medical diagnostics. The new method shows that the activity of genes, and the spatial organization of the resulting transcript molecules, strongly vary between single cells. Whenever cells activate...

2013-07-29 16:38:52

91 percent of on average 20-year-old Swiss men drink alcohol, almost half of whom drink six beverages or more in a row and are thus at-risk consumers. 44 percent of Swiss men smoke tobacco, the majority of whom are at-risk consumers – they smoke at least once a day. 36 percent of young adults smoke cannabis, whereby over half are at-risk consumers, using the drug at least twice a week. Researchers from the University of Zurich's Institute of Social and Preventive Medicine...


Word of the Day
conjunto
  • A style of popular dance music originating along the border between Texas and Mexico, characterized by the use of accordion, drums, and 12-string bass guitar and traditionally based on polka, waltz, and bolero rhythms.
The word 'conjunto' comes through Spanish, from Latin coniūnctus, past participle of coniungere, to join together; see conjoin