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News

Follow-up study indicates that common nutrient supplementation may hold the answers to combatting Alzheimer’s

September 27, 2019 | News

In a new study, Biodesign researchers reveal that a lifelong dietary regimen of choline holds the potential to prevent Alzheimer's disease (AD). Choline is a safe and easy-to-administer nutrient that is naturally present in some foods and can be used as a dietary supplement. Lead author Ramon Velazquez and his colleagues at the ASU-Banner Neurodegenerative Disease Research Center (NDRC) looked into whether this nutrient could alleviate the effects of Alzheimer’s. Earlier this year,...

Better samples, better science: new study explores integrity of research specimens

September 23, 2019 | News

Effective diagnosis and treatment of disease draws on painstaking research, which often relies on biological samples. The avalanche of studies used to better understand illnesses and design effective therapies cost billions of dollars and potentially affects millions of lives. So, it would seem reasonable to assume that the reliability of biological samples, on which accurate results depend, would be of paramount concern for the scientific community. According to Chad Borges, a researcher...

Ask A Biologist: Nicholas Stephanopoulos builds his career at the nanoscale

September 19, 2019 | News

Nicholas Stephanopoulos always wanted to be a professor, just like his father. From an early age, he pursued his passion through science, working in labs during his high school years, and later studying chemistry at Harvard. Today, he serves as an assistant professor in the Biodesign Center for Molecular Design and Biomimetics and School of Molecular Sciences. Stephanopoulos is a newly featured scientist in Ask A Biologist, an award-winning online science learning resource for students,...

Bright lights, big science: Revolutionary laser instrument receives $4.7 million boost from the National Science Foundation

September 17, 2019 | News

Deep within the subterranean confines of Building C—the latest addition to the Biodesign Institute at Arizona State University—a pathbreaking machine is quietly taking shape. Designed to unlock some of nature’s tiniest and most fleeting mysteries, the Compact X-ray Free Electron Laser (CXFEL) is the only instrument of its kind in the world. The device is the brainchild of physicist William Graves, a passionate authority on massive, intricate machines for leading-edge science. For the...

Biodesign mourns the loss of J. Orin Edson, philanthropist and entrepreneur

September 4, 2019 | News

In March 2019, Arizona State University received a transformational gift of $50 million from Charlene and Orin Edson; $25 million was directed to the Biodesign Institute, and $25 million to the College of Nursing and Health Innovation, which is now known as the Edson College of Nursing and Health Innovation. Edson died Aug. 27 at the age of 87, but his name and legacy live on at Arizona State University. At the time of their gift, the Edson family issued this statement: “We believe in...

The Kombucha Culture: Microbial communities in this fermented drink can teach us about cooperation and competition

September 3, 2019 | News

In today’s health-conscious community, kombucha is all the rave. Its appeal comes from its accessibility and alleged health benefits, which range from introducing probiotics to killing deleterious bacteria in the human body.  But as is the case for many things in science, there is more to kombucha than meets the eye – literally. The microscopic microbes inhabiting this fermented concoction could offer insight into how microbial communities interact, more specifically on how...

Extracting clean fuel from sunlight

September 3, 2019 | News

Securing enough energy to meet human needs is one of the greatest challenges society has ever faced. Previously reliable sources—oil, gas and coal—are degrading air quality, devastating land and ocean and altering the fragile balance of the global climate, through the release of CO2 and other greenhouse gases. Meanwhile, earth’s rapidly industrializing population is projected to reach 10 billion by 2050.  Clean alternatives are a matter of urgent necessity. Researchers at ASU’s...

Biodesign researchers identify new way to diagnose urinary tract infections

August 29, 2019 | News

UTI Three little letters -- U, T and I – conjure up images of pain, bloating, fever and discomfort. According National Institutes of Health, urinary tract infections (UTIs) encompass one quarter of all bacterial infections suffered by humans. Women, in particular, fall prey to UTIs. Global statistics predict that 60% of women have experienced a UTI. The majority will contract this infection before the age of 24, with the expectation of reoccurrences throughout the rest of their lives. The...

Rosa Krajmalnik-Brown named recipient of Distinguished Alumni Award at UAM

August 29, 2019 | News

Universities worldwide recognize their brightest and most successful alumni with prestigious academic awards.   Rosa Krajmalnik-Brown, a professor in the School of Sustainable Engineering and the Built Environment, a faculty member in the Biodesign Swette Center for Environmental Biotechnology and an associate faculty member in the Biodesign Center for Fundamental and Applied Microbiomics, received the Distinguished Alumni award from her alma mater, the Universidad Autonoma...

An innovative diagnostic for Lyme disease

August 26, 2019 | News

When researchers examined the mitochondrial DNA of Ötzi, a man entombed in ice high in the Tyrolean Alps some 5,300 years ago, they made a startling discovery. Secreted within the tangles of the ice man’s genetic code was evidence he’d been infected with a bacterial pathogen, Borrelia burgdorferi. Ötzi is the first known case of Lyme disease. Today, Lyme disease is a mounting health concern, with estimates of over 300,000 cases in the US annually. The illness, which produces a...