Research and Development

  • Encouraging science research, study among minorities

    A study published last year, in which 83,000 grant applications from 2000 through 2006 were examined, found that African American scientists were far less likely therethan white scientists to obtain research money from the National Institute of Health (NIH); NIH is setting up a program to change that

  • Sequestration will have a devastating impact on U.S. research enterprise

    Three organizations representing more than 200 of the U.S. leading academic research institutions yesterday launched a Web site that aims to inform policymakers and the public of the impact that the upcoming budget sequester would have on federal funding for university research; the Web site highlights the importance of federally funded university research to innovation, economy, an society

  • Non-lethal cures: new antibiotic cures disease by disarming pathogens, not killing them

    A new type of antibiotic can effectively treat an antibiotic-resistant infection by disarming instead of killing the bacteria that cause it; this is good news, since new drugs are badly needed for treating infections with the bacterium Acinetobacter baumannii, a pathogen that most often strikes hospital patients and immune- compromised individuals through open wounds, breathing tubes, or catheters

  • Sequestration would result in draconian cuts in biological, medical research

    The Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology says that sequestration would result in draconian cuts in biological and medical research; the National Institutes of Health (NIH) would be reduced by $2.529 billion, the National Science Foundation would lose $586 million, and the Department of Energy Office of Science would be cut by $400 million

  • U.S. risks losing out to Asia in medical research

    Medical research saves lives, suffering, and dollars — while also creating jobs and economic activity; the United States has long led the world, with hundreds of thousands of jobs and marketable discoveries generated by government research funding every year; this is now changing: strong, sustained growth in research spending in Asian nations contrasts with U.S. cuts and short-term approach, and a brain drain could result

  • President Obama honors 96 early-career scientists, engineers

    In 1996 President Bill Clinton established the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers (PECASE), the U.S. government’s highest honor for scientists and engineers in the early stages of their independent research careers; award nominees are considered according to two criteria: their pursuit of innovative research at the frontiers of science and technology and their commitment to community service as demonstrated through scientific leadership, public education, or community outreach; last week President Obama awarded the 2012 PECASE to ninety-six scientists and engineers

  • New U.S. biodedfense R&D network launched

    On Monday, Texas A&M System dedicated a new research center which is part of a national network of centers aiming to develop strategies and products to counter bioterrorism, chemical and radiological attacks on the United States, and better strategies to deal with pandemics; the network will have facilities in Texas, Maryland, and North Carolina; the Texas dedication is the culmination of a Manhattan Project-like program for biological countermeasures, launched in 2004 by the Department of Health and Human Services; the research network aims to develop “rapid, nimble and flexible approaches” to vaccine and therapy development, and train the next generation of professionals to sustain U.S. capabilities in these areas

  • USDA releases requests for applications for the AFRI food safety challenge

    The Department of Agriculture’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture says that this year’s grants under the Agriculture and Food Research Initiative will focus on promoting and enhancing the scientific discipline of food safety, with an overall aim of protecting consumers from microbial, chemical, and physical hazards that may occur during all stages of the food chain, from production to consumption

  • Biometrics proves 1 percent of applicants to enter U.S. are unsuitable

    Chris Archer, the online content editor at IDGA (the Institute for Defense & Government Advancement), talked with James Loudermilk, Senior Level Technologist, FBI Science and Technology Branch, about biometrics and biometrics and homeland security; Loudermilk says that biometrics applications helped the FBI determine that about 1 percent of people who seek visa to visit the United States as tourists have previously done things that make them unsuitable guests; the conversation examines the application of biometrics for homeland security, issues relating to privacy and civil liberties, and what can be learned from international biometrics projects, including India’s UID scheme

  • Long-term priorities for U.S. nuclear physics program

    Nuclear physics is a discovery-driven enterprise aimed at understanding the fundamental nature of visible matter in the universe; for the past hundred years, new knowledge of the nuclear world has also directly benefited society through many innovative applications

  • Key to U.S. future prosperity: world-class research universities

    American research universities are essential for U.S. prosperity and security, but the institutions are in danger of serious decline unless the federal government, states, and industry take action to ensure adequate, stable funding in the next decade, says a new report by the National Research Council; “The talent, innovative ideas, and new technologies produced by U.S. research universities have led to some of our finest national achievements, from the modern agricultural revolution to the accessibility of the World Wide Web,” says the chairman of the committee that wrote the report

  • Can UAVs emulate bats’ flight capabilities?

    The natural world has countless examples of creatures with extraordinary flight capabilities, but bats have evolved with truly extraordinary aerodynamic capabilities that enable them to fly in dense swarms, avoid obstacles, and fly with such agility that they can catch prey on the wing, maneuver through thick rainforests, and make high-speed 180 degree turns; researchers want to know whether UAVs can emulate bats

  • Livermorium and Flerovium added to the periodic table of elements

    The International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry (IUPAC) the other day officially approved new names for elements 114 and 116, the latest heavy elements to be added to the periodic table; the names of the two new elements: Flerovium for element 114, with the symbol Fl, and Livermorium for element 116, with the symbol Lv, late last year

  • Insider: H5N1 studies publication vote biased, unbalanced

    In late March, the National Science Advisory Board for Biosecurity (NSABB) reversed its earlier recommendation, made in December 2011, against full publication of two studies describing lab-modified H5N1 viruses with increased transmissibility in mammals; the recommendation was based on fears that the findings would help terrorist design effective bioweapons; a NSABB board member says that the March reversal of the December recommendation was the result of a bias toward finding a solution that was more about getting the government out of the current dilemma than about a careful risk-benefit analysis

  • Growing Asia Pacific research strengths leaving U.S.-based research behind

    The publications output of Chinese scientists is set to surpass that of U.S.-based scientists by 2013; in the meantime, major investments in discovery and innovation are building capacity in Korea, Singapore, and Taiwan