A University of Michigan biophysical chemist and his colleagues have discovered the smallest and fastest-known molecular switches made of RNA, the chemical cousin of DNA. The researchers say these rare, fleeting structures are prime targets for the development of new antiviral and antibiotic drugs.
Climate change is expected to increase the frequency of intense spring rain storms in the Great Lakes region throughout this century and will likely add to the number of harmful algal blooms and "dead zones" in Lake Erie, unless additional conservation actions are taken, according to a University of Michigan aquatic ecologist.
Borrowing a technology used to improve the effectiveness of drugs, scientists at the University of Michigan and Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory are reporting discovery of a new explosive more powerful than the current state-of-the-art explosive used by the military, and just as safe for personnel to handle.
According to a recent study that used functional magnetic resonance imaging to measure brain activity, the strength of communication between the left and right hemispheres of the brain predicts performance on basic arithmetic problems. The findings shed light on the neural basis of human math abilities and suggest a possible route to aiding those who suffer from dyscalculia—an inability to understand and manipulate numbers.
A smart filter with a shape-shifting surface, developed by University of Michigan researchers, can separate oil and water using gravity alone, an advancement that could be useful in cleaning up environmental oil spills, among other applications. The researchers created a filter coating that repels oil but attracts water, bucking conventional materials' properties.
Researchers trying to herd tiny particles into useful ordered formations have found an unlikely ally: entropy, a tendency generally described as "disorder." Computer simulations by University of Michigan scientists and engineers show that the property can nudge particles to form organized structures. By analyzing the shapes of the particles beforehand, they can even predict what kinds of structures will form.
As the nation suffers through a summer of record-shattering heat, a University of Michigan report finds that Generation X is lukewarm about climate change—uninformed about the causes and unconcerned about the potential dangers.
Nuclear weapons testing may at first glance appear to have little connection with climate change research. But key Cold War research laboratories and the science used to track radioactivity and model nuclear bomb blasts have today been repurposed by climate scientists.
Scientists have, for the first time, directly detected part of the invisible dark matter skeleton of the universe, where more than half of all matter is believed to reside. The discovery, led by a University of Michigan physics researcher, confirms a key prediction in the prevailing theory of how the universe's current web-like structure evolved.
NASA has selected a team including Southwest Research Institute to develop the Cyclone Global Navigation Satellite System (CYGNSS), which will provide better prediction capabilities for extreme weather events, particularly the intensification of hurricanes.
The U.S. has long been among the world's worst emitters of carbon dioxide, but when accounting for climate in addition to GDP, it is nowhere near the bottom of that list, according to University of Michigan researchers.
For the second straight month, fuel economy of all new vehicles sold in the United States fell by 0.2 mpg—likely reflecting a slight drop in gas prices, say researchers at the University of Michigan Transportation Research Institute.
University of Michigan researchers have proven that a special surface, free of biological contaminants, allows adult-derived stem cells to thrive and transform into multiple cell types. Their success brings stem cell therapies another step closer.
U.S. factories produce about 75% of what the country consumes, but the right decisions by both business and political leaders could push that to 95%, say University of Michigan researchers.
Popular firewall technology designed to boost security on cellular networks can backfire, unwittingly revealing data that could help a hacker break into Facebook and Twitter accounts, a new study from the University of Michigan shows. The researchers also developed an Android app that tells phone users when they're on a vulnerable network.
Text messaging is a surprisingly good way to get candid responses to sensitive questions, according to a new study to be presented at the annual meeting of the American Association for Public Opinion Research.
A hidden facet of a math problem that goes back to Sanskrit scrolls has just been exposed by nanotechnology researchers, who say we've been missing a version of the famous "packing problem,” which seeks the best way to cover the inside of an object with a particular shape.
Researchers at the University of Michigan have identified new targets for drugs that could potentially treat anthrax, the deadly infection caused by Bacillus anthracis . The team found a new way to block the bacteria's ability to capture iron, which is vital to its survival and its disease-causing properties.
Portable gas sensors can allow you to search for explosives, diagnose medical conditions through a patient's breath, and decide whether it's safe to stay in a mine. These devices do all this by identifying and measuring airborne chemicals, and a new, more sensitive, smart model is under development at the University of Michigan.
Fuel economy of all new vehicles sold in the United States has topped 24 mpg for the first time ever, say researchers at the University of Michigan Transportation Research Institute.
Researchers from the University of Michigan Health System and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology report they have created the first full 3-D images of B12 and its partner molecules twisting and contorting as part of a crucial reaction called methyltransfer. The reaction is crucial to biological systems and has implications for fuel development.
A University of Michigan cell biologist and his colleagues have identified a potential drug that speeds up trash removal from the cell's recycling center, the lysosome. The finding suggests a new way to treat rare inherited metabolic disorders and common neurodegenerative diseases.
Scientists from the Chinese Academy of Science's Shanghai Institute of Ceramics, in collaboration with scientists from Brookhaven National Laboratory, the University of Michigan, and the California Institute of Technology, have identified a new class of high-performance thermoelectric materials. In their study, liquid-like copper ions carry electric current around a solid selenium crystal lattice.
Nerve gases are colorless, odorless, tasteless, and deadly. While today's soldiers carry masks and other protective gear, they don't have reliable ways of knowing when they need them in time. That could change, thanks to a new litmus-like paper sensor made at the University of Michigan, which are designed to change color from blue to pink within 30 sec of exposure to trace amounts of nerve gas.
A new power scheme for cardiac pacemakers turns to an unlikely source: vibrations from heartbeats themselves. Engineering researchers at the University of Michigan designed a device that harvests energy from the reverberation of heartbeats through the chest and converts it to electricity to run a pacemaker or an implanted defibrillator.