Discovery offers new clues to lichens’ evolutionary advantage

New research challenges understanding of organisms that have been textbook cases since late 1800s

Discovery offers new clues to lichens’ evolutionary advantageOur understanding of the marriage of fungus and algae in the formation of lichen is being upended by a University of Alberta research team whose work is rewriting the biology that introduced symbiosis to the world. “New discoveries happen with symbiosis all the time, but the exciting thing here is this is the symbiosis that…

Newborn dairy calves fed probiotic healthier in crucial first weeks

Supplements containing beneficial gut bacteria from healthy cows could be a boon for dairy producers

Newborn dairy calves fed probiotic healthier in crucial first weeksA probiotic developed at the University of Alberta shows promise in improving the health of dairy calves in the essential first weeks of life. Normally, the young animals’ undeveloped immune systems leave them susceptible to common ailments like diarrhea, which can stunt growth or even result in death. When fed a cocktail of four strains…

Including Indigenous perspectives in conservation planning

How Indigenous and Western knowledge can be equal partners in conservation solutions

Including Indigenous perspectives in conservation planningProtecting the world’s increasingly fragile environments through land and wildlife management, using the thoughtful approach of Indigenous knowledge, is an idea close to Jared Gonet’s heart. As a citizen of the Taku River Tlingit First Nation, the University of Alberta student in the Faculty of Agricultural, Life & Environmental Sciences is working with his community and with…

Funding boost builds capacity for kidney research

Kidney disease costs the health-care system more than $40 billion each year

Funding boost builds capacity for kidney researchNot many people think about the cost of kidney disease, says a University of Alberta researcher. But the toll on Canadians is high. Kidney disease will affect one in 10 Canadians and costs the health-care system more than $40 billion each year. The number of people living with end-stage kidney disease, which has no current…

Biologists develop better way to identify individual animals at night

Will help answer questions related to population density, foraging patterns and more

Biologists develop better way to identify individual animals at nightBiologists and ecologists often need to identify individual animals in the wild to help answer questions related to population density, foraging patterns and more. But there’s an issue: many of the markers they use, such as tags with colours or numbers, are only clearly visible in daylight – which poses a challenge for studying nocturnal…

Study reveals why HIV remains in human tissue even after therapy

Discovery could open door to new treatments that improve our ability to eliminate the stubborn virus

Study reveals why HIV remains in human tissue even after therapyThanks to antiretroviral therapy, HIV infection is no longer the life sentence it once was. But despite the effectiveness of drugs to manage and treat the virus, it can never be fully eliminated from the human body, lingering in some cells deep in different human tissues where it goes unnoticed by the immune system. Now, new…

How antibodies are fine-tuned to fight infection

Discovery provides insight into improving vaccines, understanding cancer

How antibodies are fine-tuned to fight infectionResearchers have uncovered new information about a cellular mechanism in the immune system that provides a critical step toward a better understanding of how antibodies evolve and improve in the human body. The antibodies our immune system produces need fine-tuning to reach maximum effectiveness. When a vaccine or pathogen is first introduced into our bodies,…

Public health researcher a lead author on global report on climate change

New graduate certificate program in climate change and health will prepare students to find solutions

Public health researcher a lead author on global report on climate changeAgricultural policy-makers, wastewater treatment engineers, crisis counsellors and allergists all have something in common, although they may not realize it. Whether it’s planning for food that isn’t as nutritious as it used to be, preventing new waterborne illnesses from infiltrating the water supply, treating traumatized residents returning after an emergency evacuation or helping patients with…

Canada must explore use of psychedelics in mental-health treatment

Mushrooms show long-term benefits in those who suffer from treatment-resistant depression

Canada must explore use of psychedelics in mental-health treatmentRegardless of where one stands on legalizing psychedelics for mental-health treatment, Canada is late to the party when it comes to relaxing federal regulations. And given the disturbing rise (and costs of treating) trauma, depression and other mental health disorders worldwide, we better speed up. University researchers, consumers, investors and private-sector companies aren’t waiting for…

Five ways women can champion their own health

International Women’s Day encourages everyone to ‘Break the Bias’ in health care and research

Five ways women can champion their own healthIf you are a woman – or love one – here are some facts that may surprise you: Almost three-quarters of the 750,000 Canadians who have Alzheimer’s are women. Women are 20 per cent more likely than men to develop lung cancer if they smoke the same number of cigarettes. Heart attacks are not recognized…
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