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As coronavirus sweeps the United States, the infectious disease presents a dual risk for many Americans. While COVID-19 in and of itself causes painful symptoms and forces people to practice social distancing, chronic conditions heighten the dangers of the disease, especially for senior citizens over age 65.
In recents months, with the spread of coronavirus across the world, demand for hospital equipment has skyrocketed. Life-saving medical machinery, such as ventilators, and everyday products, such as hand sanitizer, have often been in short supply, and hospitals are sometimes forced to wait days or weeks while scattered supply chains muster up production to meet demand or for cross-country shipments of these essential materials.
As coronavirus continues to ravage the world, the U.S. federal, state and local governments are responding with increasingly drastic measures to stem further spread of the pandemic. Last week began with Virginia Governor Ralph Northam issuing stay-at-home orders until June 10 and ended with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommending citizens wear facemasks in public. Yet, despite medical institutions scrambling to develop methods of treatment for the highly contagious and deadly disease, another week has come and gone without approval for a standard treatment for COVID-19.
Though the number of human genomes sequenced continues to rise rapidly since the completion of the Human Genome Project — a scientific endeavor spanning multiple decades and countries aimed at detailing human DNA — in 2003, less than 10 percent of those genomes to date correspond to individuals of Asian descent. The GenomeAsia 100K Project, a non-profit consortium, seeks to change this lack of knowledge surrounding a major portion of the world’s ethnicities. The conglomeration of researchers and private sector executives from around the world — from Seoul, South Korea to the University — plans to add 100,000 novel genomes from individuals of Asian ethnicity to new open-access databases.
During 2019, the University School of Medicine met multiple milestones. The Federal Drug Association approved an artificial pancreas for Type I diabetics developed over the past decade at the University. Another team of researchers discovered the protein that allows the bacteria species Geobacter sulfurreducens to conduct electricity, which could have implications for biomedical device development.
Currently, fires rage in Australia, ravaging the landscape and destroying everything in their way, be it plant, animal or building. Flames consume historic forests and descend upon communities of species from the charismatic koala and kangaroo to the endangered western ground parrot and mountain pygmy possum.
The University Health System’s data science team recently advanced to the next stage of a nationwide competition to apply artificial intelligence to hospital readmissions, a persistent and costly issue. Sponsored by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, the inaugural Artificial Intelligence Health Outcomes Challenge initially received hundreds of applications. CMS chose only 25 submissions, the University’s among them, to execute their proposed strategies.
No contribution is insignificant when it comes to fostering diversity and inclusion at the University, particularly in STEM fields, according to Brittany Martínez, co-founder and president of the Graduate Recruitment Initiative Team. With the mentality that small steps forward eventually lead to substantial progress, students, faculty and staff from assorted cultures have joined forces in an attempt to recruit and retain more heterogeneous graduate classes.
With the help of a $716,065 grant from the National Institute of Justice in 2016, professors from the University — in collaboration with those at other colleges and the Federal Bureau of Investigation — combined theory with science in their study of the radicalization of women by ISIL.
Recently, despite the availability of antibiotics that effectively cure them, cases of STDs like chlamydia, gonorrhea and syphilis continue to rapidly spread across America. Virginia has not remained immune from this national trend, as the Thomas Jefferson Health District that encompasses Charlottesville witnessed a significant inflation of cases.
With new advances in technology, students and faculty researchers at the University have begun applying science to sports by using data analytics to predict the future success of both individual athletes and entire teams. William T. Scherer, professor of systems and information engineering and associate chair of Engineering Systems and Environment, along with engineering students completing their capstone projects, has been collaborating with the University’s football team for the past five years or so to optimize recruitment strategies and performance.
The Virginia Hepatitis Education and Patient Connection program has partnered with Medicaid, Virginia’s Department of Health and Department of Corrections to offer telemedicine services and intensive day-long training sessions for medical personnel throughout Virginia, especially those in rural areas. Rebecca Dillingham, associate professor of medicine in the Division of Infectious Diseases and Internal Health, and Terry Kemp-Knick, hepatitis C coordinator and clinical research manager of the University Health System, created this initiative to instruct clinical providers on proper hepatitis C treatment methods.
Regardless of hometown or background, many individuals are affected by cancer. The University’s Cancer Center is seeking to improve their services — such as broadening cancer prevention efforts and awareness — across the state by conducting a survey designed to identify the needs of residents in 94 counties stretching from Northern Virginia to West Virginia. Once compiled, the Center hopes to use the responses to illuminate ways they can better serve the needs of cancer patients.
Hidden within delicate blue petals and a green slender stalk, the American bellflower offers more than just aesthetic value. Biologists at the University of Virginia and Washington State University published a joint study Aug. 29 focusing on the effects of historic climate change and range expansion on the development of the American bellflower — Campanula americana. With climate change occurring on a wide scale, researchers used the American bellflower as a model to provide insight on plant and animal reactions to historic and current climate change and to predict responses to future climate change.
Deep in the interior of Clark Hall, approximately 20 feet underground, stand the machines that control the heating, ventilation and air conditioning of the entire building, from the classrooms and offices to the library and laboratories. Few people have any reason to venture down to this subterranean space.
While some college students associate summer with a more relaxed pace, rising fourth years Annie Sharkey and Summer Allen also see it as an opportunity to stay fit. For these two, who both work eight hours a day in Charlottesville, finding time to exercise is generally as important as being smart about how they spend their money.
When moving from high school to college, it is difficult to catalogue all the changes that occur. The particulars vary from person to person, but certain large scale adjustments await incoming students — the transitions from living and eating primarily at home to dorms and dining halls and of course to an increased academic workload.
Repairing damaged tissue is a process the body automatically undergoes as needed. However, new research from the Dudley Lab in the University’s Department of Microbiology, Immunology and Cancer Biology demonstrates that what is usually helpful may also be a means by which harmful tumors survive and spread.
This year marks the 15th class from the College of Arts and Sciences that will graduate with a Bachelor of Arts degree in neuroscience from the University, and students within the major put together a neuroscience art exhibit showcasing fluorescent images from students’ research.
Based on new research conducted by Susan Almarode, neonatal nurse practitioner at the University Health System, something as inexpensive as reading can decrease postpartum depression for mothers with babies in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. Almarode created and piloted a program known as the NICU Reading Garden in an effort to promote maternal and infant wellbeing and bonding.