Latest Washington University Stories

Scientific Balloon Record Shattered By Super-TIGER
2013-01-23 09:53:00

Washington University in St. Louis Before he left for Antarctica in November, W. Robert Binns, principal investigator for Super-TIGER, said that he would be deliriously happy if the balloon carrying the cosmic-ray detector stayed up 30 days. It has now been up 45 days, floating serenely in the polar vortex registering hits by cosmic rays. Over the weekend it shattered the previous record of 42 days set by Cream I, another cosmic ray experiment that flew during the winter of 2004-2005....

Effect Of Invasive Plants On Species Richness Depends On Scale
2013-01-17 14:41:43

Washington University in St. Louis In Missouri forests, dense thickets of invasive honeysuckle decrease the light available to other plants, hog the attention of pollinators, and offer nutrient-stingy berries to migrating birds. They even release toxins to make it less likely native plants will germinate near them. Why, then, are recent popular science articles recommending a recalibration of the traditional no-tolerance attitude toward non-native species, suggesting that we´ve...

'BRIGHTS' Reveal Location Of Targeted Tissues
2012-11-21 10:41:38

Washington University in St. Louis Called BRIGHTs, the tiny probes described in the online issue of Advanced Materials on Nov. 15, bind to biomarkers of disease and, when swept by an infrared laser, light up to reveal their location. Tiny as they are, the probes are exquisitely engineered objects: gold nanoparticles covered with molecules called Raman reporters, in turn covered by a thin shell of gold that spontaneously forms a dodecahedron. The Raman reporters are molecules whose...

Bacterial Genes Make A Complex Logic Circuit
2012-10-13 11:27:12

The circuit is designed to act as the controller in synthetic bacteria that monitor and modify their environment By force of habit we tend to assume computers are made of silicon, but there is actually no necessary connection between the machine and the material. All that an engineer needs to do to make a computer is to find a way to build logic gates – the elementary building blocks of digital computers – in whatever material is handy. So logic gates could theoretically be...

2012-09-10 14:43:59

A nationwide consortium of scientists has reported the first comprehensive genetic analysis of squamous cell carcinoma of the lung, a common type of lung cancer responsible for about 400,000 deaths each year. "We found that almost 75 percent of the patients' cancers have mutations that can be targeted with existing drugs -- drugs that are available commercially or for clinical trials," says one of the lead investigators, Ramaswamy Govindan, MD, an oncologist at Washington University School...

2012-08-24 19:26:57

Brett Smith for redOrbit.com — Your Universe Online Glaciologists from Pennsylvania State University and Washington University said their recent study on the David Glacier that appeared in Nature Geoscience not only provides a window into the behavior of glaciers–it also could be used as a simple model for the mechanism behind slip-stick earthquakes like those that occur in Haiti or along the San Andreas Fault. From 2002 to 2003, the research team recorded over 20,000...

Foundational Concept Of Ecology Tested With Experiment
2012-06-25 10:38:21

Acting through links between four trophic levels and across two ecosystems, purple loosestrife altered life in nearby ponds An elementary school science activity asks children who have each been assigned a wetland plant or animal to connect themselves with string and tape to other “organisms” their assigned plant or animal interacts with in some way. Once an ecosystem web has been created, the teacher describes an event that affects one “organism.” That...

2012-06-19 00:03:38

International collaboration puts molecular face on enzyme family that allows plants to adjust quickly to herbivore attack or changes in growing conditions Science has known about plant hormones since Charles Darwin experimented with plant shoots and showed that the shoots bend toward the light as long as their tips, which are secreting a growth hormone, aren´t cut off. But it is only recently that scientists have begun to put a molecular face on the biochemical systems that...

Word of the Day
  • Remarkable; prodigious.
  • Audacious; gutsy.
  • Completely; extremely.
  • Audaciously; boldly.
  • Impressively great in size; enormous; extraordinary.
This word is probably from the dialectal 'boldacious,' a blend of 'bold' and 'audacious.'