News » Archives » August 2016

Researchers to pursue novel Zika solution

Author: William G. Gilroy


A team of researchers from the University of Notre Dame’s Eck Institute for Global Health (EIGH) has received a grant from the USAID to pursue a novel solution to the Zika outbreak. The team, led by Molly Duman Scheel, an associate professor of medical and molecular genetics at the Indiana University School of Medicine-South Bend (IUSM-SB), associate adjunct professor of biological sciences at Notre Dame and member of EIGH, is developing an insecticide to destroy Aedes aegypti larvae before the mosquitoes are able to hatch and transmit Zika.

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Alumnus receives ACS Infectious Diseases Young Investigator Award

Author: Gene Stowe and Marissa Gebhard

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Because of the significant contributions he has made in the field of infectious diseases, The American Chemical Society awarded Timothy Wencewicz with the American Chemical Society (ACS) Infectious Diseases Young Investigator Award at the ACS Fall National Meeting in Philadelphia on August 23.

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Nanoparticles with a big environmental impact

Author: Brandi Klingerman

Jon Camden

Consider that a human hair is anywhere from 60,000 to 80,000 nanometers in size. A plasmonic nanoparticle, which is a nanoparticle made of noble metals like gold and silver, at their largest are just 100 nanometers, but pack a big punch.

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Notre Dame announces collaboration with AT&T for online master’s degree in data science

Author: Sue Ryan

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In a data-driven economy, industry leaders rely increasingly on skilled professionals who can see the significance in data and use it to solve business challenges, create new opportunities and shape change. With a growing need for skilled data scientists, the University of Notre Dame, in collaboration with AT&T, has announced its new online master of science degree with a specialization in data science. This degree program will prepare graduates for careers as data scientists in a wide range of industry fields fields including management, marketing, information technology, government policy, health care, finance, education and scientific research.

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Blue-sky biomedical projects launched by new funding

Author: Arnie Phifer

Blue Sky Research

“We fund researchers who have exciting, sometimes risky ideas but need assistance to kick-start their investigations and collect preliminary data,” explained Paul Bohn, AD&T’s director. “There’s also a focus on selecting projects that have a recognizable path to becoming high-impact, marketable products.”

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Quinn family provides $5 million gift for Phase II of Innovation Park

Author: Dennis Brown

Innovation Park

The late Thomas Quinn and his wife, Diane, have made a $5 million gift to the University of Notre Dame for the construction of the second phase of Innovation Park.

The Thomas H. and Diane G. Quinn Hall for Innovation and Change will be a 40,000-square-foot, three-level facility located on a 12-acre site immediately south of the Notre Dame campus on Angela Boulevard. Construction is expected to begin late this fall or early winter.

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Notre Dame topologist awarded The André Lichnerowicz Prize in Poisson geometry

Author: Tammi Freehling

Pavel Mnev

Pavel Mnev, a new topologist at the College of Science in the department of mathematics, has been awarded The André Lichnerowicz Prize in Poisson geometry. The biennial award is given for outstanding work by a young mathematician in Poisson geometry. “I am very much honored by the award. It is most encouraging to be recognized by such a respected international research society,” said Pavel Mnev. The André Lichnerowicz Prize is named in memory of André Lichnerowicz (1915–1998) whose work was fundamental in establishing Poisson geometry as a branch of mathematics.

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Notre Dame students on the front lines of medical research

Author: Arnie Phifer

Richard Felli

Two Notre Dame undergraduate students—Anne Grisoli and Richard Felli—and two graduate students—Katelyn Ludwig and Steve Marczak—spent the summer of 2016 conducting laboratory and clinical research at the Feinstein Institute for Medical Research in New York. All four are recipients of the inaugural Precision Medicine Research Fellowships, which enable highly qualified Notre Dame students to live and work at one of the premier clinical research facilities on the East Coast.

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A summer of analytical chemistry at Notre Dame

Author: Chontel Syfox

Analytical Chemistry REU Presentations 2016

This summer the University of Notre Dame welcomed twelve students to campus to participate in the NSF-funded Research Undergraduate Experience (REU) program in analytical chemistry. The 10-week residential program is open to rising sophomore, junior, and senior undergraduates at four-year colleges, with backgrounds in chemistry, biochemistry, biology, chemical engineering, computer science, and mechanical or electrical engineering. It offers students the opportunity to work with Notre Dame faculty on various research projects aimed at solving analytical problems in the developing world, and “teaches students how to engage with a project at the instrumental and experimental design level.” 

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DOE, NSF leaders and low energy community converge at Notre Dame to set priorities

Author: Gene Stowe

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The University of Notre Dame hosted more than 230 experts at the 2016 Low Energy Community Meeting on Aug. 11-13 in the Jordan Hall of Science. The annual gathering, which started in 2011, sets priorities for research that help guide the Department of Energy and the National Science Foundation while providing opportunities for education and networking among researchers from universities and national laboratories. The event comes as the community prepares for the opening of the Facility for Rare Isotope Beams (FRIB) at Michigan State University, the highly-anticipated “FRIB Era.”

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LoSecco publishes memoir of Nobel Prize-winning neutrino discovery

Author: Notre Dame Physics

John Losecco

When the announcement was made this past year of the 2015 Nobel Prize in Physics, Notre Dame’s Professor John LoSecco was intimately familiar with both the winners and their prize-winning discoveries. LoSecco had, in fact, played a key role in the discovery of one of the anomalies for which the Prize was shared and which had upended physicists’ view of one of the most mysterious particles in the universe – the neutrino. LoSecco has now published his recollections of the events surrounded the discovering of the “atmospheric neutrino anomaly” in the journal Physics in Perspective; they can also be downloaded at

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Uncovering a new pathway to halting metastasis

Author: William G. Gilroy

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Metastasis, the process by which cancer cells leave the primary tumor and spread to other sites in the body, is responsible for more than 90 percent of cancer deaths. Thus, there is a significant need to improve the therapeutic options for patients who suffer from metastatic disease. New research from the laboratory of Zachary T. Schafer, associate professor in the Department of Biological Sciences, Coleman Foundation Collegiate Chair of Cancer Biology and researcher in the Harper Cancer Research Institute, could lead to these new therapies.

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Reinterpreting the fossil record on jaws

Author: William G. Gilroy

Matt Ravosa

Scientists use the fossil record to make judgments on the physiology and behavior of species. But are those interpretations correct? New research from a team of researchers led by Matthew Ravosa, professor of biology and concurrent professor of both aerospace and mechanical engineering and anthropology, puts into question how we interpret the behavior of extinct organisms from their fossil remains, and the greater role of plasticity — or the adaptive fine-tuning of the link between anatomy and behavior — in determining evolution diversity.

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Katherine Ward finds niche in the convergence of science and business

Author: Brian Wallheimer

Katie Ward

While pursuing that Ph.D, Ward heard about the ESTEEM program, a master’s degree in entrepreneurship in which students take ideas from the concept stage through the process of launching a startup company. In Ward’s case, this was the convergence of two paths – science and business — that she hadn’t been familiar with.

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Page Scholar creates Girls Empowered initiative in Johannesburg

Author: Tammi Freehling

Marisa Olsen

After a childhood filled with doctors and surgeries, senior Marisa Olsen knows how impactful a complex medical condition can be on a person’s life. Having compassionate and knowledgeable doctors made a difference in her situation, so she decided to pursue a career in medicine as a way to pay it forward.

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Identifying effective treatments for colon cancer

Author: Brandi Klingerman

Amanda Hummon

In recent years researchers have begun to understand that the development of colon cancer, which is the second most common cancer in the United States, can impact the genome and cause protein changes within cancer cells. This knowledge has brought new medications and targeted therapies to the marketplace and now Notre Dame researcher Amanda Hummon is evaluating the effectiveness of these treatments.

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A personal vendetta against cancer

Author: Brendan O'Shaughnessy

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These days, Page-Mayberry funnels that passion into her job as the tissue bank consent coordinator for the Mike and Josie Harper Cancer Research Institute at Notre Dame. Her mission is to get as many patients as possible to sign a consent form to share their leftover tumor samples with Harper so that the cancer specialists there can do breakthrough research that leads to a cure.

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Notre Dame graduates receive send-off from global health leader

Author: Sarah Craig


On Saturday, July 30, 2016, the University of Notre Dame’s Master of Science in Global Health program held its 5th Commencement exercise, graduating 21 students with the professional degree of Master of Science in Global Health.  The year culminated with a capstone project in which students fulfilled their research requirement in 10 different countries including Belize, Ecuador, India, Mexico, Moldova, Peru, Thailand, Uganda, the United States, and Zambia.

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