Media Release Archives - February 2012

UBC researcher invents “lab on a chip” device to study malaria

Feb. 28, 2012 | Filed under: Media Release, News Feed | Tags: , , , , , , , ,

University of British Columbia researcher Hongshen Ma has developed a simple and accurate device to study malaria, a disease that currently affects 500 million people per year worldwide and claims a million lives.

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Taking the Earth’s pulse: UBC scientists unveil a new economic and environmental index

Feb. 20, 2012 | Filed under: Media Release | Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

A growing world population, mixed with the threat of climate change and mounting financial problems, has prompted University of British Columbia researchers to measure the overall ‘health’ of 150 countries around the world.

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Conservation risk highest off coasts of Canada, Mexico, Peru and New Zealand: UBC research

Feb. 20, 2012 | Filed under: Media Release | Tags: , , , , , , , ,

University of British Columbia researchers have identified conservation “hot spots” around the world where the temptation to profit from overfishing outweighs the appetite for conservation.

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Dismay over ovarian cancer outcomes leads to new professorship

Feb. 20, 2012 | Filed under: Media Release, News Feed | Tags: , , , ,

A new professorship created by the family and friends of the late Dr. Chew Wei, a Hong Kong physician who retired to Vancouver, will be devoted to finding new ways of detecting and treating women with ovarian and other gynaecological cancers.

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$2M national study on “making it better” for lesbian, gay, bisexual – and straight – youth

Feb. 20, 2012 | Filed under: Media Release, News Feed | Tags: , , , , ,

Just how effective school and community programs are in reducing homophobic bullying of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBTQ) – and straight – youth is the focus of a $2-million, five-year study led by Prof. Elizabeth Saewyc at the University of British Columbia.

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Figure 2 - Delta does nothing to prepare for climate change

Preparing for the flood: Visualizations help communities plan for sea-level rise

Feb. 19, 2012 | Filed under: Media Release | Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

Researchers at the University of British Columbia have produced computer visualizations of rising sea levels in a low-lying coastal municipality, illustrating ways to adapt to climate change impacts such as flooding and storms surges.

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Iconic marine mammals are “swimming in sick seas” of terrestrial pathogens: UBC researchers

Feb. 18, 2012 | Filed under: Media Release | Tags: , , , , , ,

Parasites and pathogens infecting humans, pets and farm animals are increasingly being detected in marine mammals such as sea otters, porpoises, harbour seals and killer whales along the Pacific coast of the U.S. and Canada, and better surveillance is required to monitor public health implications, according to a panel of scientific experts from Canada and the United States.

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As climate change increases forest fires, smoke forecasting could help protect public health: UBC research

Feb. 18, 2012 | Filed under: Media Release | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,

Satellite images, air quality measurements and smoke forecasting models are useful tools to help individuals and public health professionals prepare for smoke episodes in areas at risk from forest fire smoke, according to University of British Columbia researcher Michael Brauer.

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Window into world’s future oceans unveiled by NF-UBC Nereus team

Feb. 18, 2012 | Filed under: Media Release | Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

An international team from the Nippon Foundation-University of British Columbia Nereus program has unveiled the first global model of life in the world’s oceans, allowing scientists and policymakers to predict – and show through 3D visualizations – the state of life in the oceans of the future.

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Ocean acidification turns climate change winners into losers: UBC Research

Feb. 18, 2012 | Filed under: Media Release, News Feed, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , ,

Adding ocean acidification and deoxygenation into the mix of climate change predictions may turn “winner” regions of fisheries and biodiversity into “losers,” according to research released today by University of British Columbia researchers.

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“Duet of one” possible with hand-controlled voice synthesizer

Feb. 18, 2012 | Filed under: Media Release, News Feed | Tags: , , , , , ,

New technology at the University of British Columbia makes it possible for a person to speak or sing just by using their hands to control a speech synthesizer. UBC researcher Sidney Fels says the gesture-to-voice-synthesizer technology mirrors processes that human use when they control their own vocal apparatus. “It’s like playing a musical instrument that [...]

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Beyond climate models: Rethinking how to envision the future with climate change

Feb. 17, 2012 | Filed under: Media Release | Tags: , , , , , , ,

Professor Stephen Sheppard will present at the symposium Beyond Climate Models: Rethinking How to Envision the Future with Climate Change Friday, February 17, 1:30-4:30 p.m. at the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) conference in Vancouver.

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Taking biofuel from forest to highway

Feb. 17, 2012 | Filed under: Media Release, News Feed | Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

The world is moving from a hydrocarbon economy to a carbohydrate economy, according to University of British Columbia biofuel expert Jack Saddler. He is presenting his work at the 2012 Annual Meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) in Vancouver on Feb. 17.

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International ranking for infant mortality flawed: Canadian study

Feb. 17, 2012 | Filed under: Media Release, News Feed | Tags: , , , , , , ,

Canada’s ranking in international child health indexes would dramatically improve if measurements were standardized, according to a new study by researchers from the University of British Columbia, Dalhousie University, McGill University, the University of Calgary, and the Public Health Agency of Canada, working with the Canadian Perinatal Surveillance System and funded by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research.

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Maternal depression and bilingual households can impact infant language development

Feb. 17, 2012 | Filed under: Media Release, News Feed | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

While babies are born ready to learn any of the world’s languages, the crucial developmental period when they attune to their native languages can change due to environmental influences such as maternal depression or a bilingual upbringing, according to new University of British Columbia research.

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Mapping proteins key to human health and immune system: UBC research

Feb. 17, 2012 | Filed under: Media Release, News Feed | Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

Proteins, the building block for all living organisms, are the ultimate transformers – able to splice and switch roles and functions within the human body. But when these changes go wrong, diseases such as cancers and arthritis may result, says University of British Columbia researcher Chris Overall.

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Energy poverty creating a respiratory disease ‘epidemic’ for almost half the world’s population

Feb. 16, 2012 | Filed under: Media Release | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Limited access to clean sources of energy, known as energy poverty, makes nearly half the world’s population reliant on burning wood, animal waste, coal or charcoal to cook. This leads to severe respiratory diseases that kill roughly two million people worldwide each year, a problem University of British Columbia researchers are trying to solve.

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UBC-AAAS news briefing schedule

Feb. 15, 2012 | Filed under: Media Release | Tags: ,

UBC researchers will be taking part in a number of news briefing and media availability opportunities throughout the Annual Meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS).

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UBC immigration law expert available to comment on refugee act amendments

Feb. 15, 2012 | Filed under: Expert Profile, Hot Topics, Media Advisory, Media Release, News Feed | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,

A UBC expert will be available to comment on expected amendments to Canada’s Balanced Refugee Reform Act – likely announced tomorrow – which may have significant implications for refugee claimants seeking protection in this country. “Bill C-11 passed Parliament in 2010, but has not yet been implemented,” says UBC immigration law expert Catherine Dauvergne. “Changes [...]

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New drugs show promise for preventing “absence seizures” in children: UBC research

Feb. 15, 2012 | Filed under: Media Release, News Feed | Tags: , ,

A team led by a University of British Columbia professor has developed a new class of drugs that completely suppress absence seizures – a brief, sudden loss of consciousness – in rats, and which are now being tested in humans. Absence seizures, also known as “petit mal seizures,” are a symptom of epilepsy, most commonly [...]

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UBC announces 2012 individual honorary degrees: Two former PMs, singer-songwriter among Vancouver campus recipients

Feb. 14, 2012 | Filed under: Media Release, News Tip | Tags: , , , , , ,

Former Canadian prime ministers Joe Clark and Paul Martin and iconic singer-songwriter Buffy Sainte-Marie are among those receiving honorary degrees from UBC this year. Others who will receive the degrees at the Vancouver campus of the University of British Columbia include a philanthropist for Buddhism studies, a globe-trotting husband-and-wife ethnobotanist team and a beloved symphony conductor.

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UBC and four other Canadian universities chosen by U.S. to lead health education reform

Feb. 14, 2012 | Filed under: Media Release, News Feed | Tags: , , , , ,

The University of British Columbia is part of a Canadian collaborative selected by the U.S. Institute of Medicine to develop new models for training health professionals that are better tailored to today’s realities.

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More than 40 UBC researchers present leading Canadian research at global science conference

Feb. 13, 2012 | Filed under: Media Release, News Feed | Tags: , , ,

The University of British Columbia community has come out in full force to take part in the 2012 Annual Meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), the largest general scientific gathering in the world.

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UBC researchers use Google Earth to verify Mediterranean fish farming data

Feb. 8, 2012 | Filed under: Media Release | Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

The Great Wall of China is not the only thing you can see from space. Fish farming cages are clearly visible through Google Earth’s satellite images and University of British Columbia researchers have used them to estimate the amount of fish being cultivated in the Mediterranean.

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New poll shows Canadians want to make family a priority

Feb. 7, 2012 | Filed under: Media Release | Tags: , , , ,

Canadians want to make family a priority – 85 per cent want to spend more time with their families and 60 per cent want governments to support policy changes that make it easier to raise a family, according to a national poll by McAllister Opinion Research about research led by University of British Columbia professor Paul Kershaw.

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UBC researchers discover key to immune cell’s ‘internal guidance’ system; could lead to more efficient vaccines

Feb. 5, 2012 | Filed under: Media Release, News Feed | Tags: , , , , , , , ,

University of British Columbia researchers have discovered the molecular pathway that enables receptors inside immune cells to find, and flag, fragments of pathogens trying to invade a host.

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Deborah Buszard

Deborah Buszard appointed Deputy Vice Chancellor and Principal for UBC’s Okanagan campus

Feb. 3, 2012 | Filed under: Media Release | Tags: , , , , ,

The University of British Columbia Board of Governors has approved the appointment of Professor Deborah Buszard to lead UBC’s Okanagan campus as Deputy Vice Chancellor and Principal. She will begin her five-year term on July 1, 2012.

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