Berkeley in the News Archive

The links to the stories summarized on this page are time sensitive, so stories might no longer be online at that URL. We also include links to the original source publication itself.

Wednesday, 12 February 2014

1. Stress matters to brain's white matter
Los Angeles Times

A study led by associate integrative biology professor Daniela Kaufer has yielded evidence of how chronic stress affects stem cells in the brain, causing them to produce a white matter cell that can permanently reorganize the brain's circuitry. The study suggests that acute, prolonged stress early in life can have long-term consequences. "You’re creating a brain that’s either resilient or very vulnerable to mental disease, based on the patterning of white matter you get early in life,” Professor Kaufer says. Full Story

2. Genome Surgery
MIT Technology Review

Berkeley molecular and cell biology professor Jennifer Doudna's founding contributions to the development of a revolutionary genetic engineering technique are mentioned in a story about new breakthroughs in the fight against hereditary diseases. Full Story

3. PostPartisan Blog: The wrong debate on economic inequality
Washington Post

Associate economics professor Yuriy Gorodnichenko and graduate student John Mondragon have co-authored a study examining household debt, income and inequality on a geographic basis. “Our main finding is that low-income households in high-inequality regions borrowed relatively less than similar households in low-inequality regions,” the authors reported. The result refutes the theory that lower-income families have been over-borrowing so they could "keep up with the Joneses." Full Story

4. Foreign regimes use spyware against journalists, even in U.S.
Washington Post

Doctoral computer science student Bill Marczak, also a research fellow at Citizen Lab, of the University of Toronto’s Munk School of Global Affairs, has co-authored a report on hacking by authoritarian foreign governments. The incidents they studied have included surveillance and intimidation of political activists, human rights workers and journalists at home and abroad. "We’re finding this in repressive countries, and we’re finding that it’s being abused," he says. "This spyware has proliferated around the world ... without any debate." Full Story

5. Robert Reich Blog: Why the three biggest economic lessons were forgotten
Christian Science Monitor Online

Public policy professor Robert Reich writes about the three most important economic lessons of the thirty years following World War II, and why the country seems to have forgotten what it learned. He concludes: "As the gap between America’s wealthy and the middle has widened, those at the top have felt even richer by comparison. Although a rising tide would lift all boats, many of America’s richest prefer a lower tide and bigger yachts." Full Story

6. Science Careers: Defending Oneself from "Product Defense"
Science Magazine Online

Integrative biology professor Tyrone Hayes is profiled for ethical choices he has confronted in his scientific career. In studying the widely-used herbicide atrazine, manufactured by Syngenta, he has repeatedly found evidence that the chemical has profoundly deleterious effects on wildlife, particularly frogs, but Syngenta has challenged his findings and waged a campaign to discredit him. The writer concludes: "Many people, I suspect, would have made a choice different from Hayes's in the face of such strong opposition, but courage like his is not exactly rare in science. The efforts by tobacco and energy companies to refute research on lung cancer and climate change, respectively, show that such opposition is an occupational hazard for scientists who find connections that may threaten profits." Another story on this topic appeared in Grist. Full Story

7. Janet Napolitano to visit UC Berkeley on Thursday
San Francisco Business Times

UC President Janet Napolitano will tour UC Berkeley on Thursday, meeting with faculty, staff, and student leaders in the ASUC and Graduate Assembly. Full Story

8. USC and UCLA rank high for financial donations to campuses
Los Angeles Times

A survey by the Council for Aid to education has ranked U.S. universities according to the size of their philanthropic contributions last year. UC Berkeley was among California's leading institutions, with a total of $340.9 million donated. Full Story

9. Tips to make it easier to stick to exercise routine
San Francisco Chronicle

Devin Wicks, Berkeley's director of fitness and wellness operations, makes some recommendations to help people keep their New Year's fitness resolutions. "The most important way not to fail is not to say, 'I'm going to lose 20 pounds,' " he says. "That's basically setting yourself up. Instead, start off saying, 'I'm going to walk around the block today.' " Full Story

10. UC Berkeley student in Jeopardy! college tourney
San Francisco Chronicle Online

Kevin Shen, a 20-year-old math major at Berkeley, will be competing Jeopardy! College Championship, a 10-day tournament. He makes his debut Wednesday (7 p.m. on KGO-TV). The contestants from 15 colleges across the country will vie for a grand prize of $100,000 and an automatic berth in the Tournament of Champions. Full Story

Today's Edition of UC Berkeley in the News