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Faculty Research News

Shown is a colony of Trichodesmium bacteria roughly the size of the head of a pin. David Hutchins and his team studied the nitrogen-fixing cyanobacteria as well as Crocosphaera. Photo by Eric Webb.

The Ocean of Tomorrow

July 3, 2013

Climate change may be weeding out the bacteria that form the base of the ocean’s food chain, selecting certain strains for survival, according to a new USC study. In climate change, as in everything, there are winners…

Scientists show that attributing every forgetful moment to getting older can actually worsen memory problems — and reveal a surprising twist. Photo by Rhoda Baer.

Aging Stereotypes and Memory

July 2, 2013

Of the many negative stereotypes that exist about older adults, perhaps the most common is that they are forgetful, senile and prone to so-called “senior moments.” In fact, while cognitive processes do decline with…

Down in the Amazonian floodplain, the rivers ran orange with rainforest soils, containing very fine particles called colloids, as well as entire tree trunks carried off by the high flows, said USC Dornsife's Sarah Feakins, referring to her recent research trip in Peru. Photo by Sarah Feakins.

Along the River Route

July 1, 2013

The following is a first-person account of a research trip to southeastern Peru courtesy of Sarah Feakins, assistant professor of earth sciences at USC Dornsife. While most tourists travel from Cusco along the Inca trail to…

A living neuron in culture: Green dots indicate excitatory synapses and red dots indicate inhibitory synapses. Photo courtesy of Don Arnold.

Memories Illuminated

June 19, 2013

Oscar Wilde called memory “the diary that we all carry about with us.” Now a team of USC Dornsife scientists has developed a way to see where and how that diary is written. Led by Don Arnold and Richard Roberts,…

DPMG works on projects throughout the world covering a plethora of issues, such as improving access to, quality and equity of education in developing countries. Here, a teacher instructs children in Mozambique, located in Southeast Africa. Photo by Eric Miller.

An Objective Analysis

June 19, 2013

The USC Dornsife Center for Economic and Social Research (CESR) has opened a new space in the building with USC Information Sciences Institute’s office in Arlington, Va. Opened May 28, the Development Portfolio…

Scott Fraser, a world leader in using advanced technologies to capture biological processes who has a joint appointment at USC Dornsife, recently presented his techniques to scientists during a technology and molecular science retreat. Photo by John Livzey.

Technology and Science Converge

June 12, 2013

What does a bacterial flange actually look like? Going way beyond the microscope, researchers from across several schools at USC and The Scripps Research Institute in La Jolla, Calif., gathered this month to discuss the latest…

Brain activity imaged by an fMRI while participants with stroke viewed others performing an action. Blue areas show decreased activity (likely where there are lesions caused by a stroke) while red areas show increased activity (thought to be regions of the brain working harder to make up for the damaged regions). Image courtesy of Kathleen Garrison.

Exercising the Brain

June 12, 2013

A new study has found that stroke patients’ brains show strong cortical motor activity when observing others performing physical tasks — a finding that offers new insight into stroke rehabilitation. Using…

From left: Frank Ticheli of USC Thornton School of Music, David St. John of USC Dornsife and John Alexander, artistic director of the 140-voice chorale and the Pacific Symphony, link hands and take a bow. They received an outpouring of emotion from the audience with three curtain calls at their premiere of <em>The Shore</em> at the Segerstrom Center for the Arts. Photo by Andy Templeton.

Shifting Sands

June 10, 2013

The poem begins playfully with a boy at the ocean’s shore.First the tide surprisesAs it slowly risesThen the watersOf a boy’s fearsDisappear What is left seemsPearled & litThe gleaming stones& the boy…

USC Dornsife's Remo Rohs (center) with Ph.D. candidates Carolina Dantas (holding a 3-D model of transcription factors bound to DNA) and Tianyin Zhou (holding a 3-D model of a nucleosome). Dantas and Zhou have each coauthored three of the papers that Rohs published in the last two months. Photo by Susan Bell.

1-D to 3-D Genomics

June 10, 2013

Since his recent selection as an Alfred P. Sloan Research Fellow, Remo Rohs continues to demonstrate the research and creativity necessary to become a leader in the scientific community. In April and May, the assistant…

Led by Norman Arnheim and Peter Calabrese, molecular and computational biologists in USC Dornsife, a new study examines why the genetic disease Noonan syndrome is so common. Pictured is Arnheim.

Father’s Age Affects Offspring

June 6, 2013

Scientists in USC Dornsife have unlocked the mystery of why new cases of the genetic disease Noonan syndrome are so common — a mutation that causes the disease disproportionately increases a normal father’s…