Science & Technology

Two of the mice used in a sensitive new toxicity test developed at the University of Utah. A new study shows the test can detect cryptic genetic defects.

Competing mice reveal genetic defects

September 29, 2015

In recent years, University of Utah biologists showed that when wild-type mice compete in seminatural “mouse barns” for food, territory and mates, they can suffer health problems not revealed by conventional toxicity tests on caged lab mice. This test previously found mouse reproduction and survival were harmed by inbreeding, certain medicines and fructose comparable with […]

Women collecting water at a well in rural Burkina Faso, West Africa

Climate change negatively affects birth weight, U study finds

September 29, 2015

From melting glaciers to increasing wildfires, the consequences of climate change and strategies to mitigate such consequences are often a hotly debated topic. A new study led by the University of Utah adds to the ever-growing list of negative impacts climate change can have on humans—low birth weight. The first of its kind, the two-year […]

Air Quality2

U Team Building Technology to Crowdsource Complex Triggers of Pediatric Asthma

September 28, 2015

For many doctors, figuring out what caused a kid’s asthma attack means opening up regional air quality databases and applying a lot of guesswork. While pollution from cars and other sources is known to trigger asthma in some children, there are a number of lesser-understood factors that also increase their risk – everything from viral […]

U air quality course to receive Environmental Health Award

September 14, 2015

On Sept. 18, the Utah Medical Association will present the University of Utah’s Honors College’s 2014-2015 Air Quality, Health and Society Praxis Lab with its annual Environmental Health Award at the House of Delegates between 10 am-12 pm. Each year, the Honors College offers three Praxis Labs. These labs are yearlong, project-based courses that combine […]

A Hazda couple and child in northern Tanzania in 1985. University of Utah anthropologist Kristen Hawkes and colleagues’ research on Hazda led them to formulate the “grandmother hypothesis” that grandmothering among early human relatives made the human lifespan evolve so it is much longer than lifespans of other apes. Now, a new study credits grandmothering for the human tendency to form couples or pair bonds.

Did grandmas make people pair up?

September 7, 2015

If you are in a special relationship with another person, thank grandma – not just yours, but all grandmothers since humans evolved. University of Utah anthropologist Kristen Hawkes is known for the “grandmother hypothesis,” which credits prehistoric grandmothering for our long human lifespan. Now, Hawkes has used computer simulations to link grandmothering and longevity to […]

University of Utah School of Medicine investigators were awarded two grants totaling $6.4 million to investigate why children born with severe heart defects often have neurodevelopment disorders including hyperactivity, difficulty paying attention, and trouble keeping up in school.

Why Do So Many Children Born With Heart Defects Have Trouble in School?

September 1, 2015

30 years ago, being born with a severe heart defect was practically a death sentence. But as advances in medicine have given rise to generations of survivors, it’s emerging that over half have behavioral problems and difficulty keeping up academically. Two groups from the University of Utah School of Medicine were awarded $6.4 million from the National […]

Sam Vincent, Stephanie Martin, Hannah Hendrickson and Director of Capstone Initiatives Stephen Goldsmith

U students develop electronic device to help homeless patients remember medical appointments

August 24, 2015

Imagine not having access to the Internet, a cellphone or even a place to call home. Not having access to these basics can deprive a person of social interaction, education, health care and so much more. As of 2014, this was the reality for nearly 600,000 people across the nation, with over 13,000 people in […]

Suresh Venkatasubramanian, an associate professor in the University of Utah’s School of Computing, leads a team of researchers that have discovered a technique to determine if algorithms used for tasks such as hiring or administering housing loans could in fact discriminate unintentionally. The team also has discovered a way to fix such errors if they exist. Their findings were recently revealed at  the 21st Association for Computing Machinery’s SIGKDD Conference on Knowledge Discovery and Data Mining in Sydney, Australia.

Programming and prejudice

August 14, 2015

Software may appear to operate without bias because it strictly uses computer code to reach conclusions. That’s why many companies use algorithms to help weed out job applicants when hiring for a new position. But a team of computer scientists from the University of Utah, University of Arizona and Haverford College in Pennsylvania have discovered […]


4 million years at Africa’s salad bar

August 3, 2015

As grasses grew more common in Africa, most major mammal groups tried grazing on them at times during the past 4 million years, but some of the animals went extinct or switched back to browsing on trees and shrubs, according to a study led by the University of Utah. “It’s as if in a city, […]

A team led by Christopher Gregg, Ph.D., associate professor in neurobiology and anatomy at the University of Utah School of Medicine reports a targeted version of parental control over gene expression is more common than classic genomic imprinting. Published in Cell Reports, so-called noncanonical imprinting is particularly prevalent in the brain, and skews the genetic message in subpopulations of cells so that mom, or dad, has a stronger say. Subsets of cells predominantly express a single copy of the autism-linked gene Ahi1 inherited from one parent (one dot) while others express both copies (two dots).

Genetic Tug of War in the Brain Influences Behavior

July 30, 2015

Not every mom and dad agree on how their offspring should behave. But in genetics as in life, parenting is about knowing when your voice needs to be heard, and the best ways of doing so. Typically, compromise reigns, and one copy of each gene is inherited from each parent so that the two contribute […]