July 14, 2006
Vol. 36, Issue 13
Back Issues
IN THIS ISSUE
Jefferson honored on July 4
Darden-Curry program nets $5M grant
Salut! French House celebrates 20 years
Digest
Headlines
Giving back to U.Va.
Women and philanthropy
Upward Bound program gives teens a route to college
Community invited to tour JPJ Arena
Exploring Southern Africa

 

Headlines @ U.Va.

VIRGINIA COLLEGES STRESS ONLINE SAFETY TO INCOMING STUDENTS
As an increasing number of people log onto Web sites like MySpace.com, some Virginia colleges are beginning to use freshmen orientations to talk about the potential dangers and benefits of them. Schools like James Madison, Virginia Tech, Radford University, U.Va. and George Mason University are addressing the subject of the online hangouts with incoming students.
(Associated Press for the (Hampton Roads) Daily Press, July 2)

WALKING GOOD FOR YOUR BRAIN/TWO NEW STUDIES SHOW REGULAR STROLLS CAN REDUCE THE RISK OF DEMENTIA, BOOST COGNITION
Walking reduces the risk of dementia and boosts mental function, two new studies show. In one study, Robert D. Abbott, a professor of biostatistics at the U.Va. School of Medicine, and his team evaluated more than 2,000 men aged 71 to 93 who were part of the Honolulu-Asia Aging Study. The researchers asked the men about their typical daily walking and then tested them for dementia. Other studies have found physical activity may reduce the risk of dementia, Abbott said, but whether the association holds true for low-intensity activities such as walking has not been known. Dementia describes a group of symptoms related to brain function changes, such as memory problems and behavior changes. Walking does indeed lower dementia risk, the researchers discovered. “Those who walked less than a quarter mile a day were nearly twice as likely to develop dementia as those who walked more than two miles a day,” Abbott said. “These were all retired men,” he said. And the walking wasn’t necessarily done in a formal setting such as a gym, he added: “They could be walking to the grocery, or walking for another errand.” (HealthDayNews, July 3)

VQR WHO/HOW THE TINY VIRGINIA QUARTERLY REVIEW MADE SUCH A BIG SPLASH IN THE MAGAZINE INDUSTRY
[...] It’s true, [Ted] Genoways loves fiction and poetry, but he’s a fan of the graphic novel and a confessed news junkie too. Readers of the Virginia Quarterly Review (www.vqronline.org), a literary magazine based at U.Va., can see how this 33-year-old’s tastes have changed the look and the feel of VQR since he took over as editor three years ago. He’s turned a university-bred literary journal into a full-color general interest magazine that draws contributions from the same authors you see in The New Yorker. (Richmond Style Weekly, June 28)

CANCER REWIND/REVERSING CELL DIVISION COULD HAVE IMPLICATIONS FOR CANCER
Two cells are “pinching off” into separate cells, also known as cleavage. In medical research, a tiny step backward could be a huge step forward. As unbelievable as it may sound, the process that grows a single cell into a person — and runs rampant in cancer — turns out to be reversible. Medical researcher Gary Gorbsky and his colleagues at the Molecular, Cell and Developmental Biology Program at the Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation, found that using an experimental anti-cancer drug they were able to actually rewind the process of cell division. Cells that had already split in two could recombine. … As his team and their collaborators at the U.Va. Medical School wrote in the journal “Nature,” they added an experimental cancer drug called flavopiridol to cells that were frozen in the middle of cell division. Adding the drug to the cells tricked them into splitting in spite of the fact that they hadn’t yet divided their DNA and weren’t ready to. When the two new cells were almost completely split, they removed the drug. (Discover, June 27)  

 


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