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Natural Sciences

Hajim School of Engineering and Applied Sciences Mark

What is the nature of the universe in which we exist? From subatomic particles to the farthest reaches of the universe, the composition of the earth to the components of individual cells, we seek to answer the universe’s—and life’s—big questions.


Alien apocalypse: can any civilization make it through climate change?

“If we’re not the universe’s first civilization,” Frank says, “that means there are likely to be rules for how the fate of a young civilization like our own progresses.”

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A pier on a beach

Tiny microenvironments hold clues to ocean nitrogen cycle

New research by Thomas Weber, an assistant professor of earth and environmental sciences, shows that nitrogen-feeding organisms exist all over the deep ocean.

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tubes of light

Untangling the quantum dot mystery

Quantum dot synthesis has occurred largely by trial and error. That may now change, thanks to Rochester chemists Todd Krauss and Leah Frenette.

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crossword puzzle

Protein Identified in Post-Chemo Cell Death Puzzle

University of Rochester, MIT, Harvard, and the University of Oslo, have identified a protein that is required for cell death after chemotherapy—it appears, in male mice.

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graphic illustration

Ancient ozone layers and climate change

Lee Murray developed a computer model that shows how the concentration of oxidants changes under different climate conditions and temperatures.

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Illustration of new bird species

New species of prehistoric bird discovered

A team of geologists led by John Tarduno has discovered a new species of bird in the Canadian Arctic.


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A new way to fight Influenza A

Douglas Turner and Luis Martinez-Sobrido, members of the Center for RNA Biology, collaborated with researchers in Poland to determine a new target for fighting the Influenza A virus.

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Ligland graphic

A faster path to catalysts

In collaboration with Pfizer and several Rochester chemists, Daniel Weix worked to develop a process for identifying new catalysts to help synthesize drugs more efficiently and cheaply.

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Carbons under a microscope

The importance of polar oceans

Thomas Weber is first author on a study that focuses on the role that polar oceans play in regulating atmospheric carbon.

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Michael Neidig

Neidig wins young investigator award

The Department of Energy honored Michael Neidig with an Early Career Award, recognizing him as one of the nation’s “exceptional researchers” in the “crucial early career years.”

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baby sleeping

Has childcare led to smarter humans?

Steven Piantadosi and Celeste Kidd developed an evolutionary model in which higher levels of intelligence may be driven by the demands of raising infants.

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Charon in enhanced color

Where did all those cracks come from?

According to Alice Quillen, a strong tidal encounter may be the source of cracks forming on icy moons.

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