UCLA In the News May 15, 2018

UCLA In the News lists selected mentions of UCLA in the world’s news media. See more UCLA In the News.

Scientists made snails remember something that never happened to them | New York Times

David Glanzman, a professor of neurobiology at UCLA who is an author of the new paper, has been studying Aplysia californica, a sea snail, and its ability to make long-term memories for years. The snails, which are about five inches long, are a useful organism for studying how memories are formed because their neurons are large and relatively easy to work with. (Also: Smithsonian, Discover, Cosmos, The Guardian, BBC News, News-Medical, STAT, The Scientist, Tech Times, Daily Mail [U.K.], HuffPost, Gizmodo, Medical Xpress)

Evidence found of plumes on Europa, a target in search for life | Washington Post

Margaret Kivelson, a space physicist at the University of California at Los Angeles who was principal investigator for Galileo’s magnetometer, confirmed his hunch. “On one particular pass, the spacecraft came very, very close to the surface of Europa, and it was on that pass that we saw signatures that we never really understood,” she said at a news conference Monday. (Also: The Guardian, NPR’s “Morning Edition,” CBS News, KPCC-FM, Phys.org, Capital Public Radio, CNN, Daily Mail [U.K.])

STDs reached a record high in California last year | Time

“For California to have a steady increase in congenital syphilis is shameful,” said Dr. Jeffrey Klausner, a professor of medicine at University of California, Los Angeles. He pointed to nations such as Cuba, Thailand and Belarus that have nearly eliminated the life-threatening infection seen in infants. “We’ve known how to control syphilis since early 1900s. Seeing it come back like this is a sign of failure of the public health safety net,” Klausner said. (Also: Associated Press, Capital Public Radio)

Desegregation stalls, but efforts to boost it show promise | Christian Science Monitor

Among those benefits, explains Jenn Ayscue from the Civil Rights Project at the University of California, Los Angeles, are that “they have friends in other racial groups, there are less stereotypes, there’s improved communication, improved critical thinking skills, and … better economic outcomes.”

Rich charter school supporters spend millions to elect Villaraigosa governor | Los Angeles Times

“We have something of a wild, wild west environment,” said John Rogers, director of UCLA’s Institute for Democracy, Education and Access. “There probably are going to need to be new laws [regulating charter school authorization and oversight]. It’s not going to be clear to everyone as we move forward — the question is how are these new laws going to be written and who is going to have sway over them.”

Ambitious plan to rid the world of trans fats | Los Angeles Times

The fact that developed countries have been able to reduce trans fat shows that it is technically and politically possible, added William J. McCarthy, a professor at UCLA’s Fielding School of Public Health. “The problem in poorer countries is that there isn’t as much surveillance and government oversight of the food supply, and in their absence you find the small-time vendors much prefer the use of these particular hydrogenated fats,” McCarthy said. “The profit motive is going to favor their use until there’s enough political will to intervene.”

What is an embolization? | Los Angeles Times

To find out what an embolization procedure entails and why it might be necessary, we spoke to Dr. Mark S. Litwin, professor and chairman of urology at UCLA. He explains what conditions are most frequently treated with embolization, how the procedure works and potential minor side effects the first lady might experience.

Opioid in cocaine and meth is killing people in California | Los Angeles Times

“We don’t know whether this is an anomaly, or whether it’s a bellwether of something that’s about to hit,” said UCLA professor Steve Shoptaw, who studies substance abuse.

Independent voters close to outnumbering Republicans in California | KPCC-FM’s “Air Talk”

“In some of these primaries we’ve seen a couple of continuing patterns. The first is that there’s very robust Democratic turnout as compared to four years ago, and that continues across almost every state,” said UCLA’s Matt Barreto. (Approx. 25:00 mark)

Plains All American Pipeline facing criminal charges for oil spill | KCRW-FM

“Although it’s unusual for criminal charges to be brought in environmental cases, they certainly are brought when it seems like a company really made significant errors in judgment,” said UCLA’s Sean Hecht. (Approx. 00:27 mark) [Audio download]

Legal sports betting could be coming to California | KPCC-FM

“It was a 1992 law called ‘A Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act’ that essentially implicitly made it illegal for states to have sports betting, with the exception of Nevada, which was grandfathered in,” said UCLA’s Lee Ohanian. (Approx. 00:40 mark) [Audio download]

UCLA to receive grant to study dementia | Marketplace “Morning Report”

UCLA is getting more than $13 million to study how best to care for people with dementia. [Audio download]

Material World: Making the modern factory | BBC News’ “The Forum”

“In the early ’90s, I was a doctoral student conducting research for my dissertation. I worked full time for several months in an electronics factory made for exports. The factories were given preferential policies and they could take advantage of the massive supply of cheap and docile labor in the countryside,” said UCLA’s Ching Kwan Lee. (Approx. 31:17 mark)

African-American students with disabilities suspended at disproportionately high rates | EdSource

“There is a huge amount of lost instruction for black kids due to their suspension that is very different from what white kids are experiencing and it needs to be addressed,” said [UCLA’s] Daniel J. Losen, the report’s author. “I was shocked and I’ve been working in this area for some time.”

American cities with shortest and longest work weeks | CNBC

While those who worked more than desired had a three-point uptick in loneliness on the UCLA Loneliness Scale, those who worked less than desired had a full six-point increase in loneliness.

Description of gene could suggest path toward therapies for cancer  | Phys.org

Now, researchers led by UCLA’s Dr. Paul Krebsbach are the first to characterize the mechanism of the human equivalent, which they call mammalian EAK-7, or mEAK-7. Krebsbach, dean of the UCLA School of Dentistry and a professor of periodontics, led a team that found mEAK-7 regulates the molecular process, or “metabolic pathway,” that dictates cell growth and human development. (Also: News-Medical)

Potential for drought, large wildfires looms over summer | Scientific American

“There’s been a growing body of evidence that there have been some long-term declines in Sierra snowpack,” said UCLA climate scientist Neil Berg, one of the report’s authors, noting that this year’s below-average snowpack may present a look at what typical conditions may be like in the coming decades.

Receptor plays role in repairing damage from heart conditions | News-Medical

“This study clues us in to how we might be able to better help patients heal when they experience heart conditions,” said Dr. Soban Umar, first author of the study and an assistant professor in residence in the department of anesthesiology and perioperative medicine at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA. “For the first time, we’re finding a particular receptor in the heart that could unlock new pathways for treatment.” (Also: HealthCanal)

New findings on extreme nausea and vomiting in pregnancy | News-Medical

Marlena Fejzo is an associate researcher at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA who studies the condition. She suffered from HG herself and lost a pregnancy to it. She is encouraged by the advances being made to better understand this complex physiological disease. “We finally have some answers as to the cause of this debilitating condition, debunking the theory that it is all in the woman’s head,” says Fejzo.

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