The Huck Institutes of the Life Sciences

News Archive

Did smoking kill the Neanderthals?

Smoke inhalation would have been a serious threat for early man, due to campfires. But it appears that modern humans have evolved a reduced sensitivity to the chemicals in smoke so that it doesn’t trigger so much inflammatory damage to our airways.

full article


Coral conservation efforts aided by computer simulations

New research shows that endangered corals in the eastern Pacific Ocean are isolated from healthy coral populations in the west

full article


Where there's smoke and a mutation there may be an evolutionary edge for humans

A genetic mutation may have helped modern humans adapt to smoke exposure from fires and perhaps sparked an evolutionary advantage over their archaic competitors, including Neandertals, according to a team of researchers.

full article


Announcing Huck Graduate Research Innovation Grant recipients for 2016

The Huck Institutes of the Life Sciences is pleased to announce this year’s recipients of Huck Graduate Research Innovation (GRI) Grants.

full article


Penn State researcher awarded grant to study Zika transmission in United States

The Zika virus is appearing more frequently in the United States, including a locally transmitted outbreak in Florida, and people are concerned. Now the National Institutes of Health (NIH) has awarded a Penn State researcher a grant to test whether common American mosquitoes can carry the virus.

full article


Self-healing textiles not only repair themselves, but can neutralize chemicals

Someday, chemically protective suits made of fabric coated in self-healing, thin films may prevent farmers from exposure to organophosphate pesticides, soldiers from chemical or biological attacks in the field and factory workers from accidental releases of toxic materials, according to a team of researchers.

full article


Super-Cold Microscope Has Super Cool Uses

While "go big" is the motto for many science initiatives, Penn State researchers are hoping a cutting-edge microscope will allow them to "go deep" to promote biomedical research and discoveries in materials science.

full article


Trees rely on a range of strategies to hunt for nutrient hot spots

On the surface, trees may look stationary, but underground their roots -- aided by their fungal allies -- are constantly on the hunt and using a surprising number of strategies to find food, according to an international team of researchers.

full article


Penn State Smeal exposes scientists to business, entrepreneurship expertise

A week of executive-style business classes led by Penn State Smeal College of Business faculty recently exposed 22 life science doctoral and post-doctoral students at Penn State to the entrepreneurial possibilities of their research.

full article


Penn State bee research pollinates next generation of scientists

Elina Lastro Niño's curiosity about honey bees dates back to her childhood in Bosnia, where her father kept bees for a time. After perhaps one bee sting too many, her father gave up his bees, and Niño's interest in honey bees waned — but not her fascination with insect biology.

full article


Probing Questions: How concerned should Pennsylvanians be about Zika virus?

Jason Rasgon, associate professor of entomology and disease epidemiology, studies how viruses are spread by mosquitoes, fleas, sand flies, lice, ticks, mites, and other insects and arthropods. In this Probing Question video, Rasgon looks at the relative risks for Pennsylvanians of Zika virus, Lyme disease and West Nile virus.

full article


New clues could help scientists harness the power of photosynthesis

Identification of a gene needed to expand light harvesting in photosynthesis into the far-red-light spectrum provides clues to the development of oxygen-producing photosynthesis, an evolutionary advance that changed the history of life on Earth.

full article


Penn State, TB Alliance, and GSK partner to discover new treatments for TB

A new collaboration between TB Alliance, GSK, and scientists in the Eberly College of Science seeks to find new small molecules that can be used to create antibiotics in the fight against tuberculosis (TB).

full article


Picky eaters: Bumble bees prefer plants with nutrient-rich pollen

Bumble bees have discriminating palettes when it comes to their pollen meals, according to researchers at Penn State.

full article


3D printing produces cartilage from strands of bioink

Strands of cow cartilage substitute for ink in a 3D bioprinting process that may one day create cartilage patches for worn out joints, according to a team of engineers.

full article


Invasive species could cause billions in damages to agriculture

Invasive insects and pathogens could be a multi-billion-dollar threat to global agriculture and developing countries may be the biggest target, according to a team of international researchers.

full article


Thirty years of research supports cacao farmers, chocolate industry

The 30th anniversary of the Endowed Program in the Molecular Biology of Cocoa -- Penn State's first fully endowed research program -- was celebrated May 31-June 3 on the University Park campus during a symposium titled, "Frontiers in Science and Technology for Cacao Quality, Productivity and Sustainability."

full article


Researchers to study how microbes become 'fungi in ant's clothing'

A pair of grants worth more than $2 million will enable Penn State researchers to study how microbial parasites control the behaviors and characteristics of their animal hosts.

full article


Study of fungi-insect relationships may lead to new evolutionary discoveries

Zombie ants are only one of the fungi-insect relationships studied by a team of Penn State biologists in a newly compiled database of insect fungi interactions.

full article


New targets for vaccines identified on the surface of the malaria parasite

Dozens of potential new protein targets for malaria vaccines have been identified and characterized on the surface of the transmitted sporozoite stage of the malaria parasite in a new research study.

full article


Pages