UA News Science & Technology
Updated: 23 hours 49 min ago
Researchers have deciphered the DNA of the earliest ancestor of flowering plants, providing long-awaited insight into the evolution of the amazing diversity of the more than 300,000 flowering plant species we enjoy today.
Researchers, including a team from the UA's BIO5 Institute, have successfully isolated and sequenced the entire messenger RNA, or the "genetic photocopies," contained in the nucleus of a single cell – a long-anticipated step forward that could help detect cancer sooner and more accurately.
For decades, no one knew how a virus that preys on bacteria transfers its DNA into the host cells because it appeared to lack the structures other viruses use for that process. Now researchers have discovered how the virus does it - using a structure that might hold applications for nanotechnology.
An interdisciplinary UA team has received over $700,000 from the National Science Foundation to develop a computer program that will sort through between 1 and 10 million alerts of astronomical objects each night from the Large Synoptic Survey Telescope, which will begin operations in Chile in 2022.
What do kidney stones, a shrimp’s lunch, and firefighting foam have in common? The answer lies in the destructive power of sound waves, which UA researchers are investigating as a means of eliminating toxic chemicals. Manish Keswani, an assistant professor in the Department of Materials Science and Engineering, and Reyes Sierra, a professor in the Department of Chemical and Environmental Engineering, have been awarded a U.S. Air Force contract to destroy firefighting chemicals using a novel sonochemical process, which uses sound waves to break down complex and toxic molecules.
After studying frogs on three continents, a UA biologist has come to the conclusion that frog species have striking similarities no matter where thet make their homes. In a study published in the journal Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences, ecology and evolutionary biology professor John Wiens and collaborators suggest that the similarity in frog species across continents has two explanations.
New scientific data obtained from images taken with UA's HiRISE Mars camera suggest salty water may be flowing at certain times of the year in Mars' equatorial region, which had long thought to be free of water or ice. HiRISE principal investigator Alfred McEwen presented the findings at the American Geophysical Union meeting in San Francisco.
The countdown clock officially started on Dec. 9, with 999 days remaining until the projected launch of the first NASA mission to bring back a sample from a pristine, primitive asteroid. The event also marked the launch of an engaging social media and public outreach campaign to share the excitement of the mission's progress across the world.
The Giant Magellan Telescope’s third primary mirror was unveiled at the University of Arizona’s Steward Observatory Mirror Lab on Friday. The UA is producing a total of seven mirrors. They'll be combined into a light-gathering surface 80 feet in diameter - creating the largest telescope ever built.
UA faculty members Malcolm Hughes, Katrina Marie Miranda and Diana E. Wheeler have been named fellows of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. The honor is only bestowed upon those individuals who maintain a proven record of advancing knowledge and applications determined to be scientifically or socially distinguished.
An international team of astronomers, led by a University of Arizona graduate student, has discovered the most distantly orbiting planet found to date around a single, sun-like star. Weighing in at 11 times Jupiter’s mass and orbiting its star at 650 times the average Earth-Sun distance, planet HD 106906 b is unlike anything in our own Solar System and defies current planet formation theories.
Chieri Kubota came to the UA from Japan with many goals, including growing strawberries hydroponically in the desert Southwest. Her focus is flavor over shelf life. Her goal is to test varieties and high-tech growing methods – then work with greenhouse growers to cultivate strawberries in the winter for local farmers markets, grocers and restaurants. Little did she know that in the 1890s Arizona was famous for its luscious off-season strawberry crop.
UA researcher Armin Sorooshian and his research team recently conducted two aircraft field studies to investigate haze, dust and smoke – those little-understood ubiquitous aerosol particles. In studying the properties of such particles in the atmosphere, the team is working to help scientists to better understand aerosol-cloud interactions and predict climate change.
UA researchers are testing nanotechnology to improve how cardiovascular implant devices are attached in the body. The goal is to make the surface sticky so they adhere better to the body's tissues, reducing the chances of being dislodged by blood flow.
Leading a UA research effort that has brought in almost $8 million in funding, UA Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering Department Head Jeff Jacobs conducts fundamental research in fluid instability and provides experimental data to help national laboratories validate their simulations of nuclear arms safety and efficacy.
Famed UA astrophotographer Adam Block has again captured a striking image of the cosmos. The glowing red region in the constellation Serpens, which means snake, "gives this vista an eerie feeling" while its contrasting regions bring to mind to duality of heaven and hell, Block says.
UA researchers have discovered a surprisingly diverse ecosystem of microbes in a limestone cave near Tucson, Arizona, eking out a living from not much more than drip water, rock and air. The discovery not only expands our understanding of how microbes manage to colonize every niche on the planet but also could lead to applications ranging from environmental cleanup solutions to drug development.
A National Sciences Foundation-funded exhibit, "Journey into the World of Microbes," is now open in the Discovery Center at Kartchner Caverns, offering the public a closer look at the microscopic organisms that live in the caves. The kiosk was created to educate the public about these cave microbes, including some that are being studied by UA researchers.
The UA's McGuire Center for Entrepreneurship was named Innovator of the Year in academia during the Governor's Celebration of Innovation gala. All finalists for the award were from the UA, representing innovative programs in agriculture, the biological sciences and environmental science.
FireScape is a comprehensive effort to manage fires and ecosystems in Arizona's sky island region. The project brings together representatives from the UA, the U.S. Forest Service, The Nature Conservancy, Bureau of Land Management, National Park Service and other southeastern Arizona land managers. Firescape researchers collect extensive data for each mountain range and build interactive maps to allow for a scientifically driven approach to managing fires.