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Research News from UC San Diego
Updated: 2 hours 52 min ago

UC San Diego’s $1.16B in Research Funding Sets New Record

Fri, 2017-08-18 13:10

University of California San Diego received $1.160 billion in sponsored research support in FY2017 (July1-June 30), a 3 percent increase from FY2016’s total of $1.126 billion. This marks the second consecutive year in which UC San Diego broke its own previous record. Overall, the university ranks 5th in the nation in sponsored research.

GIST Tumors Linked to NF1 Mutations, Genetic Testing Needed

Fri, 2017-08-18 08:42

Researchers at UC San Diego Moores Cancer Center, with colleagues from Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center and Fox Chase Cancer Center, have determined that a specific region of the small bowel, called the duodenal-jejunal flexure or DJF, shows a high frequency of gastrointestinal stromal tumors (GISTs) with mutations of the NF1 gene.

SPOILER ALERT: Computer Simulations Provide Preview of Next Week’s Eclipse

Thu, 2017-08-17 10:10

On August 21, 2017, a total eclipse of the Sun will be visible across the U.S. Using massive supercomputers, including Comet at the San Diego Supercomputer Center (SDSC) at the University of California San Diego, researchers from Predictive Science Inc. (PSI) in San Diego completed a series highly-detailed solar simulations timed to the moment of the eclipse.

Computer Security Experts Honored for Research that Stands the Test of Time

Thu, 2017-08-17 09:24

Sixteen years after they published a groundbreaking paper on the spread of denial-of-service cyber attacks on the Internet, UC San Diego computer scientists are being honored with a Test of Time award at this week’s USENIX Security Symposium in Vancouver, Canada.

Drug-delivering Micromotors Treat Their First Bacterial Infection in the Stomach

Wed, 2017-08-16 02:00

Nanoengineers at the University of California San Diego have demonstrated for the first time using micromotors to treat a bacterial infection in the stomach. These tiny vehicles, each about half the width of a human hair, swim rapidly throughout the stomach while neutralizing gastric acid and then release their cargo of antibiotics at the desired pH.

Prestigious Rankings Name UC San Diego 15th Best University in the World

Tue, 2017-08-15 14:36

The University of California San Diego has been ranked the 15th best university in the world by the 2017 Academic Ranking of World Universities (ARWU). UC San Diego was also named the world’s third best public college. The campus was named the world’s third best public college and nationally, UC San Diego was recognized as the country’s 13th best university.

Compounds in Desert Creosote Bush Could Treat Giardia and “Brain-eating” Amoeba Infections

Tue, 2017-08-15 12:04

Researchers at Skaggs School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences at University of California San Diego and the University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus have found that compounds produced by the creosote bush, a desert plant common to the Southwestern United States, exhibit potent anti-parasitic activity against the protozoa responsible for giardia infections and an amoeba that causes an often-lethal form of encephalitis.

Blood Biopsy Reveals Unique, Targetable Genetic Alterations in Patients with Rare Cancer

Tue, 2017-08-15 09:00

Using fragments of circulating tumor DNA in blood, University of California San Diego School of Medicine researchers were able to identify theoretically targetable genetic alterations in 66 percent of patients with cancer of unknown primary (CUP), a rare disease with seven to 12 cases per 100,000 people each year.

Hundreds of Undergraduates to Speak at UC San Diego’s Summer Research Conference Aug. 18

Mon, 2017-08-14 11:54

Her dream is to become a pediatrician and be the first in her family to graduate from college. Mandy Che, a senior at the University of California San Diego, is inspired by her parents who journeyed from Vietnam to San Francisco as refugees with no money and little English. She has learned to embrace all opportunities—like conducting faculty-mentored research over the summer at UC San Diego. On Aug. 18, she will present her findings along with 378 other undergraduates at the Summer Research Conference, the largest regional undergraduate research conference in San Diego County.

Qualcomm Institute’s CARI Therapeutics Awarded NIH Grant for Opioid Sensor

Thu, 2017-08-10 14:04

QI Innovation Space member CARI Therapeutics has received a grant from the National Institutes of Health to collaboratively develop a biosensor that will detect the presence of opioids in patients in recovery.

Novel Stem Cell-Derived Model Created of Inflammatory Neurological Disorder

Thu, 2017-08-10 13:53

An international team of scientists, led by University of California San Diego School of Medicine researchers, has created a human stem cell-based model of a rare, but devastating, inherited neurological autoimmune condition called Aicardi-Goutieres Syndrome (AGS). In doing so, the team was able to identify unusual and surprising underlying genetic mechanisms that drive AGS and test strategies to inhibit the condition using existing drugs.

Scientists Find New Way to Map Differences in the Brain

Thu, 2017-08-10 11:00

A team from the UC San Diego Department of Cognitive Science and the Salk Institute for Biological Studies has, for the first time, profiled chemical modifications in the DNA of individual neurons, giving the most detailed information yet on what makes one brain cell different from its neighbor. The novel approach enabled the team to sort neurons into subtypes and create new kinds of brain maps. The study also identifies new subtypes of neurons.

New Version of DNA Editing System Corrects Underlying Defects in RNA-based Diseases

Thu, 2017-08-10 09:00

Until recently, CRISPR-Cas9 gene editing could only be used to manipulate DNA. In 2016, University of California San Diego School of Medicine researchers repurposed the technique to track RNA in live cells in a method called RNA-targeting Cas9. In a study published August 10 in Cell, the team took RCas9 a step further: they corrected molecular mistakes that lead to microsatellite repeat expansion diseases, which include a type of ALS and Huntington's disease.

2017 Massry Prize Honors Microbiome Research Pioneers

Wed, 2017-08-09 08:54

Microbiome researchers Rob Knight, PhD, University of California San Diego, Jeffrey Gordon, MD, Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, and Norman Pace, PhD, University of Colorado Boulder, will share this year’s Massry Prize, splitting the $200,000 honorarium. These researchers lead a field that works to produce a detailed understanding of microbiomes and methods for manipulating them for the benefit of human and environmental health.

UC San Diego Health Ranked Nationally by U.S. News & World Report

Tue, 2017-08-08 08:19

UC San Diego Health and its medical and surgical specialties have been recognized as among the best in the nation by U.S. News & World Report for 2017-18. The annual “Best Hospitals” rankings distinguish hospitals that excel in treating the most challenging health conditions.

Epic Move: UC San Diego Health Transitions to Cloud Technology

Mon, 2017-08-07 09:39

UC San Diego Health has moved its electronic medical records (EMR) system to the cloud. The move to an Epic-hosted cloud environment is part of a long-term strategy to shift away from traditional data centers to a less expensive, more reliable and secure repository for patients’ medical records.

A New View for Protein Turnover in the Brain

Mon, 2017-08-07 09:32

Scientists at UC San Diego have provided the first evidence that lysosomes, specialized structures found in nearly every cell in your body, can travel to distant parts of neurons to branch-like areas known as dendrites. Lysosomes help keep balance in the brain by removing material that is no longer needed, a key function that could be associated with disorders such as Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s.

UC San Diego Welcomes Kyoto University in Reception Honoring San Diego Liason Office Opening

Mon, 2017-08-07 09:19

Kyoto University of Japan, one of the University of California San Diego’s international partners, announced the opening of a liaison office in San Diego in late March. UC San Diego played a key role in establishing the office designed to ease in partnering and collaboration.

Single Strep Bacteria Protein Sets Off White Blood Cell’s Early Warning System

Mon, 2017-08-07 08:00

Group A Streptococcus bacteria — the cause of strep throat and flesh-eating infections — have been well studied for nearly a century. But researchers at University of California San Diego School of Medicine and Skaggs School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences recently made a surprising discovery: strep’s M protein alone wipes out macrophages, but not other types of immune cells. The macrophages’ self-sacrifice serves as an early warning of infection to the rest of the immune system.

En Route to UC San Diego, Chinese Undergraduate Wins Award at SIGGRAPH 2017 – in Absentia

Mon, 2017-08-07 06:39

This fall an undergraduate alumnus from China’s Tsinghua University is joining the Computer Science and Engineering (CSE) Ph.D. program, and this week, Tiancheng (Kevin) Sun was named the winner of the ACM Student Research Competition in the undergraduate category at the SIGGRAPH computer-vision conference in Los Angeles.