For those of us with a sweet tooth, an extra helping of dessert can seem irresistible. Nutritionists and doctors though, do not dismiss this as an arbitrary craving. In fact, many have hypothesized that a key cause behind these cravings is a diminished ability to taste sweet compounds. A new study by Prof. Robin Dando, food science, hopes to shed light on this mechanism and could have serious implications on how obesity is managed. “Several research projects in the past have found that taste is weakened in the obese.
According to an ancient Korean myth, fire dogs sent by a power hungry king attempt to steal the fiery sun or ice cold moon. When they bite either orb, an eclipse results. But on August 21st, as parts of the United States are treated to a total solar eclipse, astronomers all over the country will not be searching for these creatures. Instead, they shall be taking part in experiments to try to understand the plasma around the Sun, the Earth’s atmosphere and the ability of life to survive beyond Earth. Researchers at Weill Cornell Medicine will be analyzing data gathered during one such experiment.
Predictions of the likely effects of climate change are plentiful in scientific journals. Warnings of smog-engulfed cities, rising precipitation levels and the resultant changing landscape of diseases already seem to be realities in parts of the world. While the causes of such rapid change may be clear, one Cornell researcher believes that there is another avenue left to explore: the effect that human illnesses have on the environment. “A lot of the ways that we’ve thought about this in the past is by considering how the environment affects our health. In this study we examine the other side: how our health might affect the environment.
Imagine waking up and opening the tap to muddy water. According to the World Health Organization, that is the predicament that 1.8 billion people worldwide find themselves in. Often water treatment plants are expensive and require too much energy to run. A team at Cornell hopes to change that. Pristine, crystal clear water is a luxury, AguaClara hopes to make it a right.
What do Yellow Fever, Dengue Fever and Zika have in common? Not only are they extremely deadly diseases, the three share a common vector: Mosquitoes. For years, researchers have sought ways to reduce the probabilities of transmission and the severity of each virus. Genetically modified mosquitoes that lead to the collapse of entire mosquito populations and vaccines have only recently been introduced and their results are still uncertain. To augment such efforts, the Northeast Regional Center For Excellence in Vector Borne Diseases was launched last month, led by Prof. Laura Harrington, entomology.
On a gloomy Saturday afternoon, most Cornell buildings are eerily silent. Not Carpenter Hall. To the uninitiated, its basement seems more like an off-limits factory workspace. But inside, a shiny golden droid, Star Wars’ C3PO, casually rests against a pillar. Right opposite, a mini-rollercoaster fully equipped with a seat to simulate its sudden drops blocks out the clutter of electrical wires.
NASA’s annual climate reports seem to be displaying a chilling trend: 2016 was the third consecutive hottest year on record. With the world’s fossil fuel consumption increasing by 0.6 percent last year, the chances of permanently altered climate patterns are no longer miniscule. However, spurred by the Paris Agreement of 2015, countries seem to be embracing renewable sources of energy. Obstacles, such as their comparative efficiency, remain. That’s where a new study that sheds light on how bacteria metabolize biomass by Prof. Ludmilla Aristilde, biological and environmental engineering, could come in handy.
Ice packs, painkillers and elastic bandages are silent attendees at any sporting event. Capable of soothing sprains and bruises, athletes the world over depend on their support. But swollen and painful joints are not simply a byproduct of physical exertion. In fact, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, approximately 1 percent of the world’s population suffers from rheumatoid arthritis and complains of similar symptoms. Its socioeconomic effects are incalculable. Simple painkillers are incapable of mitigating the pain patients suffer.
Before the advent of the Internet television and radios were all the rage. But just like memes, videos, blogs and articles are used to question the role of mass media in today’s society, individuals have been using television and radio broadcasts to do the same for over 50 years. Ruth Kohn Goldsen was one such critic. Once a Professor of Sociology at Cornell, she used her radio show, ‘The Show and Tell Machine: How Television Works and Works You Over’ to critique the culture of mass media. Named in her honour and featuring artwork that explores such critiques, ‘The Rose Goldsen Archive of New Media Art’ was founded by Prof. Timothy Murray, comparative literature and english, in 2002.
Dementia can be truly debilitating. Categorized by the World Health Organization as a syndrome “in which there is deterioration in cognitive function,” it is a major cause of dependency in the elderly. However, a team of Cornell alumni hopes to ease this process and help dementia patients have meaningful interactions with their loved ones. Over 47.5 million people suffer from dementia, with numbers expected to grow to 135.5 million by 2030. However, the true economic and social cost to individuals and their families is incalculable.