News

College students may get health benefits from less than one extra hour of sleep

College life can be rigorous and exhausting, but new research suggests that just one extra hour of sleep a night is not only possible, but can also have significant health benefits for college students.

Patrick Drew named associate director of Penn State’s Institute of the Neurosciences

Drew succeeds David Vandenbergh in an important role promoting Neuroscience research and education at University Park.

Sleep deprivation may lead to slower metabolism, weight gain

Restricting sleep for just several days alters how we metabolize fats and changes how satisfied we are by a meal, according to new research conducted at Penn State and published in the Journal of Lipid Research.

Gene therapy helps functional recovery after stroke

A new gene therapy turns glial cells—abundant support cells in the brain—into neurons, repairing damage that results from stroke and significantly improving motor function in mice.

NSF grant to fund research on brain activity and scientific creative thinking

Roger Beaty, assistant professor of psychology and director of the Cognitive Neuroscience of Creativity Lab in the Penn State Department of Psychology, has received a $1.1 million grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF) along with co-investigators from two other institutions to collaborate on a project aimed at understanding and measuring creativity in the context of science.

Forecasting infectious diseases: Improved prediction could transform treatment

By applying the same predictive strategies used in weather forecasting, Penn State’s Steven Schiff is changing the way we approach treatment of infectious diseases worldwide.

Sense of smell, pollution and neurological disease connection explored

A consensus is building that air pollution can cause neurological diseases such as Alzheimer's disease and Parkinson's disease, but how fine, sooty particles cause problems in the brain is still an unanswered question. Now a team of Penn State researchers, using mice, have found a possible way, but more research is still needed.

Milk: Best drink to reduce burn from chili peppers

People who order their Buffalo wings especially spicy and sometimes find them to be too "hot," should choose milk to reduce the burn, according to Penn State researchers, who also suggest it does not matter if it is whole or skim.

Researchers believe that with the addition of vanilla, the added sugar content in flavored milk could potentially be reduced by as much as half and people should not be able to perceive the beverage as less sweet. The congruent odor tricks the brain into thinking that there is still enough sweetness there.  IMAGE: © Getty Images / StudioThreeDots

Vanilla makes milk beverages seem sweeter

Adding vanilla to sweetened milk makes consumers think the beverage is sweeter, allowing the amount of added sugar to be reduced, according to Penn State researchers, who will use the concept to develop a reduced-sugar chocolate milk for the National School Lunch Program.

Sensing food textures is a matter of pressure

Food's texture affects whether it is eaten, liked or rejected, according to Penn State researchers, who say some people are better at detecting even minor differences in consistency because their tongues can perceive particle sizes.