Having heartburn often may lead to cancers of the throat and vocal cord, according to a new study by postdoctoral research fellow Scott Langevin. The study also found that over-the-counter antacids may help reduce the risk of cancer.
Nigerian writer Chinua Achebe, whose novel “Things Fall Apart” is one of the most-read books by an African author, was buried today in his hometown of Ogidi in the country’s southeast. Achebe, who died in Boston on March 21 at the age of 82, was lowered into his grave with tens of thousands in attendance, including Nigeria President Goodluck Jonathan and Ghana’s President John Mahama.
Wilmington Star News: Smell: The underrated sense | Wed 22 May
Rachel Herz, adjunct assistant professor of psychiatry and human behavior, comments on how smell can influence people's attraction to one another, in this article on the science behind smell. “If a woman does not like how a man smells, it is a visceral barrier to being intimate,” Herz says.
Science 360: CreatureCast: The Resurrection Fern | Wed 22 May
In today's Science 360 featured video. Rebecca Haumann, from Erika Edwards' Plant Diversity course at Brown University, describes how different plants cope with drying out.
Brown University's governing body isn't expected to act on the issue of divestment at its business meeting this week despite a student campaign pushing for a vote.
Members of the Brown Divest Coal Campaign, which is pushing for the school to divest from coal companies, said they have been invited to speak Thursday during the first day of the Corporation’s annual two-day May meeting.
An article on a new study that found that men diagnosed with ADHD as children were twice as likely to become obese as adults, cites research out of Brown that found that obesity impedes the production of a hormone that curbs appetite and inspires calorie burning.
Stephen Houston, professor of anthropology, comments on how the Internet is helping researchers write the history of Mayan civilization. "The Web log gets ideas out quickly, which is very appealing,” said Houston. “You don’t have to wait two years for publication. You want to lay claim to a new idea and get it noticed by colleagues.”
In a column on Europe's ongoing economic crisis, John Cassidy references Mark Blyth's new book to answer the question of why Europe continues to enact austerity measures, despite the tactic being "discredited in the nineteen-twenties and thirties."
RI NPR: A Year of Future Docs, In One Documentary | Mon 20 May
RI NPR is wrapping up its year-long "Future Docs" segment with an hour-long documentary about the crucible of medical school, set against the backdrop of some of the most dramatic changes in health care in a generation. Listen to the full hour or individual segments at the link.
In today’s Academic Minute, Jay Dickson, science data analyst in geological sciences, explains what the world's saltiest pond has to say about the possibility of life on Mars.
Stephen McGarvey, professor of epidemiology, is studying the feeding patterns of Samoan babies and the effect it has as the child grows.McGarvey says a previous study showed children who put on the most weight for their body length, had been fed with formula milk as infants, and cautions that if this pattern continues, the children will become overweight as they enter kindergarten age.
The Providence Journal: Seeking the Formula at Brown | Sat 18 May
Every year, Brown’s Formula Society of Automotive Engineers team prepares for a competition in Michigan, where they present and race their car against entries from 119 other schools. They build the racecar from scratch, except for a few major components like the engine and tires, an engineering feat that requires a vast base of knowledge, tens of thousands of dollars, and tremendous creativity and hard work.
The New York Times: The Health Toll of Immigration | Sat 18 May
An article on the health patterns of both Hispanic immigrants and American-born Hispanics cites 2001 research from Andrew Fenelon that found that half of the three-year life expectancy advantage that Hispanic immigrants had over American-born Hispanics was because they smoked less.
Marketplace: Fed may ease off on stimulus | Fri 17 May
President of the San Francisco Federal Reserve John Williams made headlines when he speculated that the Fed may reduce its stimulus efforts in the coming months. David Wyss, adjunct professor of economics and international relations, explains whether or not Williams' comments should be interpreted as optimism about the economy.
National Geographic: Emerging Explorers | Fri 17 May
Chad Jenkins, associate professor of computer science, has been selected as one of this year’s National Geographic Emerging Explorers. The program recognizes and supports uniquely gifted and inspiring young adventurers, scientists, photographers, and storytellers—explorers who are already making a difference early in their careers. To help the Emerging Explorers realize their potential, National Geographic awards each of them $10,000 for research and exploration.
NPR: Ivy Leaguers Broaden Minds With New Race Center | Thu 16 May
Tricia Rose, professor of Africana studies, talks with Michel Martin about her new role as director of the Center for the Study of Race and Ethnicity in America, her vision for the Center and how she hopes it will spark new questions about race and ethnicity.
Seven years after Brown University became the first college in the state to equip its campus police with guns, Russell Carey, executive vice president for planning and policy, says it’s unlikely the school will reverse that policy anytime soon, given it has allowed its police to catch more perpetrators.
PBS Newshour: Moon and Earth May Share a Watery Past | Wed 15 May
An article on how Alberto Saal, associate professor of geological sciences, Erik Hauri of the Carnegie Institution for Science, and James Van Orman of Case Western Reserve University -- all friends since graduate school -- came to find evidence of water on the moon.
Reuters: There is no sovereign debt crisis in Europe | Wed 15 May
Evidence that Europe’s austerity policies are not working was in ample supply this morning. To understand why this is happening, Mark Blyth, professor of international political economy, says it is necessary to forget everything you think you know about the euro zone crisis, and understand that it is merely a sequel to the U.S. financial meltdown that started, like its American counterpart, with dangerously-indebted risk-taking on the part of a super-sized banking sector.
The Providence Journal: Ex-Brown president Simmons to receive French Legion of Honor award | Wed 15 May
Ruth J. Simmons, former president of Brown University, will receive the French Legion of Honor award Thursday at a ceremony in the John Carter Brown Library on the Brown Campus. The award, given to Simmons by decree of former French President Nicolas Sarkozy, is the highest decoration offered by the French government.
As RI NPR celebrates the conclusion of our school-year-long series "Future Docs," guest blogger Dr. Stanley M. Aronson, founding dean of the Warren Alpert Medical School, reflects on how far medical education has come since he entered the field 70 years ago.
A new book by Mark Blyth, professor of international political economy, titled "Austerity: The History of A Dangerous Idea" is reviewed by Paul Krugman in this round-up of new economics-based books.
Azavy, a business plan led by Brown senior Tyler Benster, won the student track in last night's RI Business Plan Competition Finals, earning the team $15,000 in cash and services valued at $24,000. Azavy is an online store that connects people and organizations that own 3D printers with consumers who want to buy products designed and printed on them.
Confused about your future in media? Don’t know which publication to read or try to work for? Lucky for you, two contributors to Brown University’s The College Hill Independent “with an interest in media” have broken it down in a handy (and only slightly confusing) flow chart.
The Hill: Guns and the filibuster | Mon 13 May
Richard Arenberg, adjunct lecturer in public policy, responds to critics who blame the recent defeat of the gun ownership background-check amendment in the Senate on the filibuster, pointing out that "The bipartisan bill is not dead, however. Broad public support can still convince the Congress to reverse itself. Historically, filibusters rarely can withstand strong and sustained public support for particular legislation."
A round-up of the week's science news includes the latest bat research out of Brown, with a link to the video on news.brown.edu: "If you watch only one video about bat tongues this week, let it be one made by biologists at Brown University, who figured out how to illuminate the animals’ long tongues without bothering their sensitive bat eyes."
Allen Dennison, clinical assistant professor of medicine, comments on the effects of dementia on memory, the medications that he has found to slow, but not stop, memory loss, and the positive effect music can have on a patient with memory empairment.
The historic Ladd Observatory, operated by Brown, is closing during June, July and at least part of August so the gears can be oiled and the optics in the telescope cleaned. But the public is invited to visit on Tuesday evenings for the rest of this month to visit and catch a glimpse into the sky, which is currently yielding views of Saturn and its rings.
The Washington Post: Transportation exhibition offers a lesson in history and longevity | Sun 12 May
Stephen Lubar, professor of American studies, comments on the longevity of the 10-year-old “America on the Move” exhibition at the National Museum of American History, a project led in the five years leading up to its opening in 2003. Transportation is a particularly “great way of telling a story in a museum” because of the objects involved, he says.