UCI announces employee, student back-to-campus plans

Irvine, Calif., April 20, 2021 — Taking what it has learned from remote work and learning practices over the past 15 months, the University of California, Irvine will begin instituting back-to-campus plans for employees and students that will include hybrid workplaces and flexible coursework. The transition back to campus will be managed in phases starting July 1, with the university being fully operational in person by Sept.

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UCI study finds that California Competes Tax Credit program creates jobs

Irvine, Calif., April 15, 2021 — Finally, an economic development tax incentive program that works – that’s the conclusion of an analysis by researchers at the University of California, Irvine. They found that each job incentivized under the California Competes Tax Credit led to more than two additional people working in that location.

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UCI-led team creates new ultralightweight, crush-resistant tensegrity metamaterials

Irvine, Calif., March 11, 2021 – Catastrophic collapse of materials and structures is the inevitable consequence of a chain reaction of locally confined damage – from solid ceramics that snap after the development of a small crack to metal space trusses that give way after the warping of a single strut. In a study published this week in Advanced Materials, engineers at the University of California, Irvine and the Georgia Institute of Technology describe the creation of a new class of mechanical metamaterials that delocalize deformations to prevent failure.

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John Chaput can store the Declaration of Independence in a single molecule

Just how much space would you need to store all of the world’s data? A building? A block? A city? The amount of global data is estimated to be around 44 zettabytes. A 15-million-square-foot warehouse can hold 1 billion gigabytes, or .001 zettabyte. So you would need 44,000 such warehouses – which would cover nearly the entire state of West Virginia.

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UCI researchers eavesdrop on cellular conversations

Irvine, Calif., Feb. 17, 2020 — An interdisciplinary team of biologists and mathematicians at the University of California, Irvine has developed a new tool to help decipher the language cells use to communicate with one another. In a paper published today in Nature Communications, the researchers introduce CellChat, a computational platform that enables the decoding of signaling molecules that transmit information and commands between the cells that come together to form biological tissues and even entire organs.

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Radioactive bone cement found to be safer in treating spinal tumors

Irvine, Calif., Feb. 16, 2021 — A radioactive bone cement that’s injected into bone to provide support and local irradiation is proving to be a safer alternative to conventional radiation therapy for bone tumors, according to a study led by University of California, Irvine researchers. The study shows that this brachytherapy cement can be placed into spinal bones to directly irradiate tumors without harming the spinal cord, and the radioactive material will stay localized in the bones, which promises to virtually eliminate side effects.

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Nutrition, companionship reduce pain in mice with sickle cell disease, UCI-led study finds

Irvine, Calif., Feb. 1, 2021 — Researchers from the University of California, Irvine and the University of Minnesota have found that an enriched diet and companionship can reduce pain in mice with sickle cell disease by increasing serotonin. They also discovered that duloxetine, an antidepressant that boosts serotonin levels, could be an alternative to opioids in treating chronic pain.

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Up-trending farming and landscape disruptions threaten Paris climate agreement goals

Irvine, Calif., Jan. 27, 2021 — One of President Joe Biden’s first post-inauguration acts was to realign the United States with the Paris climate accord, but a new study led by researchers at the University of California, Irvine demonstrates that rising emissions from human land-use will jeopardize the agreement’s goals without substantial changes in agricultural practices.

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Stony Brook University Names Paul Goldbart as Executive Vice President and Provost

Paul Goldbart, PhD, has been appointed the new Executive Vice President and Provost, effective March 22, 2021, announced Stony Brook University President Maurie McInnis. Goldbart is currently Dean of the College of Natural Sciences, Robert E. Boyer Chair and Mary Ann Rankin Leadership Chair at The University of Texas at Austin (UT Austin).

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UCI scientists measure local vibrational modes at individual crystalline faults

Irvine, Calif., Jan. 11, 2021 – Often admired for their flawless appearance to the naked eye, crystals can have defects at the nanometer scale, and these imperfections may affect the thermal and heat transport properties of crystalline materials used in a variety of high-technology devices. Employing newly developed electron microscopy techniques, researchers at the University of California, Irvine and other institutions have, for the first time, measured the spectra of phonons – quantum mechanical vibrations in a lattice – at individual crystalline faults, and they discovered the propagation of phonons near the flaws.

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UCI researchers use deep learning to identify gene regulation at single-cell level

Irvine, Calif., Jan. 5, 2021 — Scientists at the University of California, Irvine have developed a new deep-learning framework that predicts gene regulation at the single-cell level. Deep learning, a family of machine-learning methods based on artificial neural networks, has revolutionized applications such as image interpretation, natural language processing and autonomous driving.

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UCI engineers reveal molecular secrets of cephalopod powers

Irvine, Calif., Dec. 17, 2020 — Reflectins, the unique structural proteins that give squids and octopuses the ability to change colors and blend in with their surroundings, are thought to have great potential for innovations in areas as diverse as electronics, optics and medicine. Scientists and inventors have been stymied in their attempts to fully utilize the powers of these biomolecules due to their atypical chemical composition and high sensitivity to subtle environmental changes.

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UCI-led study profiles undocumented students’ experiences in state public universities

Irvine, Calif., Dec. 10, 2020 — Although most undocumented students at California’s public universities experience disruptions to their education and well-being due to immigration status concerns, more than two-thirds have a 3.0 or higher GPA, according to a new study led by the University of California, Irvine. The findings are the first to be reported under the UC Collaborative to Promote Immigrant and Student Equity initiative, launched in 2019 and supported by a $270,000 UC Multicampus Research Programs and Initiatives grant.

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Pacific Symphony working with UCI public health experts on COVID-19 plan

Irvine, Calif., Dec. 8, 2020 — University of California, Irvine public health experts are providing consulting services to Pacific Symphony to enable the Orange County ensemble to once again play music together – which hasn’t happened since early March because of the coronavirus pandemic. In the past months, Pacific Symphony has held online events – including virtual concerts, living room concerts on video, internet interview programs, and KCET and PBS SoCal’s “Southland Sessions Presents Pacific Symphony” series – featuring offerings from the orchestra’s archival vaults.

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UCI researchers develop rapid antibody generation technology

Irvine, Calif., Dec. 7, 2020 — Using the same strain of yeast that ferments wine and makes dough rise, a team led by University of California, Irvine and Harvard Medical School researchers has developed an in vitro technology that can rapidly hypermutate antibodies. The new technology generates antibodies faster than animal immune systems and better than current synthetic methods, giving researchers the tools for evolving exceptionally potent agents, including therapeutic candidates that target SARS-CoV-2.

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Smiling sincerely or grimacing can significantly reduce the pain of needle injection

Irvine, Calif., Dec. 1, 2020 — The coming of winter means cooler temperatures, shorter days and flu shots. While no one looks forward to a vaccination, a study led by the University of California, Irvine, has found that either a sincere smile or a grimace can reduce the pain of a needle injection by as much as 40 percent. A genuine, or Duchenne, smile – one that elevates the corners of the mouth and creates crow’s feet around the eyes – can also significantly blunt the stressful, needle-related physiological response by lowering the heart rate.

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UCI professor’s life skills course is expanded to all 10 UC campuses

Irvine, Calif., Nov. 30, 2020 — Long successful at the University of California, Irvine, Mahtab Jafari’s Life 101 course will be available across the 10 UC campuses during the upcoming winter quarter. The class teaches healthy lifestyle choices, promotes students’ well-being, and helps them to recognize and manage their stress.

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Perfect Match: FAU and Memorial Healthcare System Establish Research Partnership

South Florida giants in higher education and healthcare have joined forces to form an alliance that will advance clinical research and clinical trials in the region. Florida Atlantic University and Memorial Healthcare System in Broward County have formed a “Research Partnership to Advance Clinical Trials” (Research PACT), which combines their expertise and resources in clinical research, clinical trials, basic research and translational biomedical research.

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UC researchers pioneer more effective method of blocking malaria transmission in mosquitoes

Irvine, Calif., Nov. 3, 2020 — Employing a strategy known as “population modification,” which involves using a CRISPR-Cas9 gene drive system to introduce genes preventing parasite transmission into mosquito chromosomes, University of California researchers have made a major advance in the use of genetic technologies to control the transmission of malaria parasites.

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Antibody screening finds COVID-19 nearly 7 times more prevalent in O.C. than thought

Irvine, Calif., Oct. 28, 2020 — Testing a representative sample of Orange County residents for a wide range of coronavirus antibodies, University of California, Irvine researchers found that 11.5 percent of them have antibodies for COVID-19, in contrast to previous estimates of less than 2 percent. Latino and low-income residents had the highest prevalence of SARS-CoV-02 antibodies with rates of 17 percent and 15 percent, respectively.

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Cancer treatment without side effects?

Irvine, Calif., Oct. 27, 2020 – Treating cancer without debilitating side effects has long been the holy grail of oncologists, and researchers at the University of California, Irvine and Switzerland’s Lausanne University Hospital may have found it. Charles Limoli, professor of radiation oncology at UCI, and Marie-Catherine Vozenin, associate professor of radiation oncology at the Swiss facility, used an ultra-high dose rate of radiation therapy to eliminate brain tumors in mice, bypassing key side effects usually caused by cranial irradiation.

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National Academy of Medicine elects UCI biomedical engineer Kyriacos A. Athanasiou

Irvine, Calif., Oct. 22, 2020 — University of California, Irvine biomedical engineer Kyriacos A. Athanasiou has been elected to the National Academy of Medicine, one of the highest distinctions awarded to professionals in the medical sciences, healthcare and public health. He is one of 90 new U.S.-based members announced this week, along with 10 new international members.

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Demographic differences foster social ties in online support groups, UCI-led study finds

Irvine, Calif., Oct. 22, 2020 — Millions of adults in the U.S. join online support groups to help them attain health goals, ranging from weight loss to smoking cessation. In their quest to make connections, members have a tendency to hide demographic differences, concerned about poor social integration that will weaken interpersonal ties.

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UCI materials scientists discover design secrets of nearly indestructible insect

Irvine, Calif., Oct. 21, 2020 – With one of the more awe-inspiring names in the animal kingdom, the diabolical ironclad beetle is one formidable insect. Birds, lizards and rodents frequently try to make a meal of it but seldom succeed. Run over it with a car, and the critter lives on. The beetle’s survival depends on two key factors: its ability to convincingly play dead and an exoskeleton that’s one of the toughest, most crush-resistant structures known to exist in the biological world.

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Pandemic lockdowns caused steep and lasting carbon dioxide decline

An international team of climate experts, including Earth system scientists at the University of California, Irvine, today released an assessment of carbon dioxide emissions by industry, transportation and other sectors from January through June, showing that this year’s pandemic lockdowns resulted in a 9 percent decline from 2019 levels.

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UCI, others see agriculture as major source of increase in atmospheric nitrous oxide

Irvine, Calif., Oct. 8, 2020­ – An international team of researchers – including Earth system scientists at the University of California, Irvine – recently completed the most thorough review yet of nitrous oxide from emission to destruction in the planet’s atmosphere. In addition to confirming that the 20 percent increase in the amount of the greenhouse gas since the start of the Industrial Revolution can be totally attributed to humans, the team expressed doubt about the ability to reduce emissions or mitigate their future impacts.

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UCI biochip innovation combines AI and nanoparticle printing for cancer cell analysis

Irvine, Calif., Oct. 7, 2020 – Electrical engineers, computer scientists and biomedical engineers at the University of California, Irvine have created a new lab-on-a-chip that can help study tumor heterogeneity to reduce resistance to cancer therapies. In a paper published today in Advanced Biosystems, the researchers describe how they combined artificial intelligence, microfluidics and nanoparticle inkjet printing in a device that enables the examination and differentiation of cancers and healthy tissues at the single-cell level.

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Population distribution can greatly impact COVID-19 spread, UCI-led study finds

Irvine, Calif., Oct. 1, 2020 — Uneven population distribution can significantly impact the severity and timing of COVID-19 infections within a city or county, leading individual communities to have vastly different experiences with the pandemic, according to a recent study led by the University of California, Irvine. Findings published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences show that the heterogeneous spatial features of interpersonal connections may produce dramatic local variations in exposures to those with the illness.

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Study links rising stress, depression in U.S. to pandemic-related losses, media consumption

Irvine, Calif., Sept. 18, 2020 – Experiencing multiple stressors triggered by the COVID-19 pandemic – such as unemployment – and COVID-19-related media consumption are directly linked to rising acute stress and depressive symptoms across the U.S., according to a groundbreaking University of California, Irvine study. The report appears in Science Advances, published by the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

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UCI provides consultation services for Monarch Beach Resort coronavirus mitigation plan

Irvine, Calif., Aug. 24, 2020 – With the right practices and procedures, businesses that are reopening can reduce the threat of coronavirus infections, benefiting workers, patrons and everyone they come in contact with. However, companies seeking knowledgeable guidance on this have few options. The University of California, Irvine, is now providing expert advice to Monarch Beach Resort.

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UCI and international institutions link Southeast Asia megadrought to drying in Africa

Irvine, Calif., Aug. 21, 2020 – Physical evidence found in caves in Laos helps tell a story about a connection between the end of the Green Sahara – when once heavily vegetated Northern Africa became a hyper-arid landscape – and a previously unknown megadrought that crippled Southeast Asia 4,000 to 5,000 years ago. In a paper published today in Nature Communications, scientists at the University of California, Irvine, the University of Pennsylvania, William Paterson University of New Jersey and other international institutions explain how this major climate transformation led to a shift in human settlement patterns in Southeast Asia, which is now inhabited by more than 600 million people.

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UCI cyber-physical security researchers highlight vulnerability of solar inverters

Irvine, Calif., Aug. 18, 2020 – Cyber-physical systems security researchers at the University of California, Irvine can disrupt the functioning of a power grid using about $50 worth of equipment tucked inside a disposable coffee cup. In a presentation delivered at the recent Usenix Security 2020 conference, Mohammad Al Faruque, UCI associate professor of electrical engineering & computer science, and his team revealed that the spoofing mechanism can generate a 32 percent change in output voltage, a 200 percent increase in low-frequency harmonics power and a 250 percent boost in real power from a solar inverter.

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UCI materials scientists study a sea creature that packs a powerful punch

Irvine, Calif., Aug. 17, 2020 – University of California, Irvine materials scientists are learning about resilience from the mantis shrimp. The ancient crustaceans are armed with two hammerlike raptorial appendages called dactyl clubs that they use to bludgeon and smash their prey. These fists, able to accelerate from the body at over 50 mph, deliver powerful blows yet appear undamaged afterward.

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Group is established to connect, inspire and empower UCI women in technology

Irvine, Calif., Aug. 12, 2020 — To connect, inspire and empower women working, researching and teaching in technology-related fields across campus, the University of California, Irvine has established a new diversity affinity group, Women in Technology at UCI. Through strategic partnerships, career development, educational events and networking activities, Women in Technology at UCI will strengthen the community of women in technology on campus.

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UCI researchers launch first-of-its-kind coronavirus statistics portal

Irvine, Calif., Aug. 10, 2020 — Scientists at the University of California, Irvine have unveiled a public website that provides up-to-date statistics on coronavirus infections in Orange County, with comparisons to neighboring and other California counties. The site displays information collected from the California Open Data Portal in an easily comprehended format, giving visitors quick access to the most relevant data on hospitalized patients with COVID-19, intensive care unit patients, new daily cases and new daily deaths caused by the disease.

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UCI scientists get ‘initial hit’ in developing drug to treat COVID-19

Irvine, Calif., Aug. 5, 2020 – When the coronavirus pandemic hit, almost everyone at the University of California, Irvine – and colleges across the nation – had to abandon campus. But James Nowick, professor of chemistry, was not a part of that exodus. That’s because his lab, which designs and constructs chemical molecules, had the right equipment to help in the global push to find treatments for COVID-19.

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NSF grants $18 million to UCI for materials science and engineering center

Irvine, Calif., July 14, 2020 – The National Science Foundation has awarded $18 million to the University of California, Irvine in support of a new materials research science and engineering center. UCI is one of three MRSECs newly funded by the NSF in 2020, joining 16 other existing centers at leading research institutions in the United States.

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Microorganisms in parched regions extract needed water from colonized rocks

Irvine, Calif., May 4, 2020 – In Northern Chile’s Atacama Desert, one of the driest places on Earth, microorganisms are able to eke out an existence by extracting water from the very rocks they colonize. Through work in the field and laboratory experiments, researchers at the University of California, Irvine, as well as Johns Hopkins University and UC Riverside, gained an in-depth understanding of the mechanisms by which some cyanobacteria survive in harsh surroundings.

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Ellen Druffel elected to National Academy of Sciences

Irvine, Calif., April 30, 2020 – University of California, Irvine chemical oceanographer and biogeochemist Ellen Druffel has been elected to the National Academy of Sciences, one of the world’s most distinguished scientific organizations. One of 146 scientists from around the world to have been elected, Druffel researches the carbon cycle of the planet’s oceans and how humanity’s burning of fossil fuels affects that cycle.

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Milky Way could be catapulting stars into its outer halo, UCI astronomers say

Irvine, Calif., April 20, 2020 – Though mighty, the Milky Way and galaxies of similar mass are not without scars chronicling turbulent histories. University of California, Irvine astronomers and others have shown that clusters of supernovas can cause the birth of scattered, eccentrically orbiting suns in outer stellar halos, upending commonly held notions of how star systems have formed and evolved over billions of years.

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Repeated novel coronavirus media exposure may be linked to psychological distress

Irvine, Calif., March 23, 2020 – While government officials and news organizations work to communicate critical risk assessments and recommendations to the public during a health crisis such as the new coronavirus pandemic, a related threat may be emerging, according to researchers at the University of California, Irvine: psychological distress resulting from repeated media exposure to the crisis.

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East Antarctica’s Denman Glacier has retreated almost 3 miles over last 22 years

Irvine, Calif., March 23, 2020 – East Antarctica’s Denman Glacier has retreated 5 kilometers, nearly 3 miles, in the past 22 years, and researchers at the University of California, Irvine and NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory are concerned that the shape of the ground surface beneath the ice sheet could make it even more susceptible to climate-driven collapse.

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Greenland shed ice at unprecedented rate in 2019; Antarctica continues to lose mass

Irvine, Calif., March 18, 2020 – During the exceptionally warm Arctic summer of 2019, Greenland lost 600 billion tons of ice, enough to raise global sea levels by 2.2 millimeters in two months. On the opposite pole, Antarctica continued to lose mass in the Amundsen Sea Embayment and Antarctic Peninsula but saw some relief in the form of increased snowfall in Queen Maud Land, in the eastern part of the continent.

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