Antiviral drug remdesivir offers second mechanism of attack

Understanding how the conditionally approved COVID-19 drug works is key to improving treatments, says U of A researcher

Antiviral drug remdesivir offers second mechanism of attackResearchers at the University of Alberta have discovered a novel, second mechanism of action by the antiviral drug remdesivir against SARS-CoV-2, according to findings published in the Journal of Biological Chemistry. The research team previously demonstrated how remdesivir inhibits the COVID-19 virus’s polymerase or replication machinery in a test tube. Matthias Götte, chair of medical microbiology and immunology…

Wildfires, logging affect key fungi in pine forests: studies

Disturbances by humans or nature change the balance of fungi in soil, potentially making it harder for seedlings to regenerate

Wildfires, logging affect key fungi in pine forests: studiesDisturbances can hit Alberta’s lodgepole pine forests hard – including life under the soil, new University of Alberta research shows. Fungal communities that nourish pine tree roots are being altered by both human-made and natural disturbances, which can stress forests and make it tougher for pine seedlings to regenerate, said Jean Rodriguez Ramos, a PhD…

Little evidence vitamin D prevents severe COVID-19

Getting too much vitamin D can also cause health problems, says U of A pediatric kidney specialist

Little evidence vitamin D prevents severe COVID-19At the beginning of May, a pair of studies emerged suggesting people who are deficient in vitamin D are more likely to experience serious health complications if infected with COVID-19. Sales of the micronutrient soared as a scared public tried to gain any advantage they could over the virus. Unfortunately, University of Alberta pediatrics professor Todd…

Group designs better CPR board for resuscitating COVID-19 patients

Pandemic inspires University of Alberta innovation in emergency and critical care

Group designs better CPR board for resuscitating COVID-19 patientsA potential need sparked by the COVID-19 pandemic has inspired an Edmonton team of clinicians and academics to build a better cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) board for use in emergency departments and intensive care units (ICUs). Because of COVID-19’s attack on the lungs, many patients in emergency departments and intensive care are placed on their bellies…

Forensic anthropologist helps police identify unknown victims

For Pamela Mayne Correia, the most satisfying cases are the ones she helps solve with the scarcest of skeletal remains

Forensic anthropologist helps police identify unknown victimsForensic anthropology requires guts of steel but there was one disturbing case even Pamela Mayne Correia found hard to stomach. The University of Alberta anthropologist was called in to help reconstruct and identify human remains after one of Canada’s worst mass murders, the 1992 bombing of nine replacement workers during a strike-lockout at the Giant gold mine in…

Butterflies ‘sentinels’ of climate change in mountain ecosystems

U of A scientists urge more monitoring of butterfly populations to help understand alpine environments predicted to change rapidly

Butterflies ‘sentinels’ of climate change in mountain ecosystemsMountains and butterflies are conceptualized as the ultimate juxtaposition – enduring and resolute versus fleeting and delicate – but the surprising robustness of alpine butterflies could help scientists better understand the impact climate change is having on mountains. In an essay written for the third annual State of the Mountains report by the Alpine Club of Canada, University…

Neonatal heart surgery survivors face kidney, blood pressure issues

Neonatal heart surgery survivors face kidney, blood pressure issuesBabies who have life-saving surgery for congenital heart problems within the first month of life face a lifelong risk of chronic kidney disease and high blood pressure, according to new research led by University of Alberta pediatric specialists. “We know that kidneys, like all organs, have to last a lifetime,” said Catherine Morgan, associate professor and interim…

How parents can help their kids succeed at online learning

Teamwork by parents, teachers and students is key, says U of A education expert who offers four ways to make it happen

How parents can help their kids succeed at online learningFor students learning from home this year, there will be some lingering challenges from last spring’s COVID-19 shutdown: parents busy balancing their own work needs, no in-person connection with teachers, technology headaches. But the best way to support online learners is through solid teamwork involving everyone in the equation, says a University of Alberta education…

Caregiving can last for decades, new research shows

Understanding different lifetime patterns of caregiving can inform supportive policies to help people cope, say U of A researchers

Caregiving can last for decades, new research showsTo most people, ‘caregiving’ means looking after ailing relatives in their final years. But the reality is much different, with the actual workload lasting up to 30 years for some, according to University of Alberta research. The study, the first of its kind to gauge caregiving across a person’s lifetime, debunks the myth that looking after an…

New research reveals what makes condos sell

Construction and design features matter more to buyers than price or age of properties, engineering researchers find

New research reveals what makes condos sellPhysical features such as construction materials, interior finishes and air conditioning are better determinants of how well a condo sells than price or building age, according to a University of Alberta study looking to pinpoint design-related features that increase the probability of a condo’s sale. “We’re trying to provide a framework through which builders can evaluate…

Are COVID-19 safety measures protecting Canada’s health workers?

Study assessing physical, mental health effects of treating COVID-19 patients one of two U of A projects receiving federal funding

Are COVID-19 safety measures protecting Canada’s health workers?There’s heightened anxiety among physicians and jumps in depression among nurses, health-care aides and personal support workers, according to early data from a University of Alberta study. The study is looking into the effectiveness of safety measures to protect the physical and mental health of Canada’s health-care workforce treating those with COVID-19. Occupational epidemiologist Nicola Cherry,…

Worse birth outcomes, higher pregnancy risk in poorest rural regions

Alberta researchers identify gradients of risk for preterm births, small and large size at birth, smoking and drug use by mothers

Worse birth outcomes, higher pregnancy risk in poorest rural regionsThe highest concentration of adverse birth outcomes and related maternal risk factors occur in rural areas of Alberta with the lowest socio-economic status, according to new research from the University of Alberta. “When it comes to perinatal health, postal code can be as important as your genetic code,” said perinatal epidemiologist Maria-Beatriz Ospina, assistant professor of obstetrics…

‘Superdeep’ diamonds shed light on Earth’s inner workings

U of A researcher leads study revealing new insights into Earth’s carbon cycle

‘Superdeep’ diamonds shed light on Earth’s inner workings  In a new study led by a University of Alberta PhD student, researchers used diamonds as breadcrumbs to provide insight into some of Earth’s deepest geologic mechanisms. “Geologists have recently come to the realization that some of the largest, most valuable diamonds are from the deepest portions of our planet,” said Margo Regier, a PhD…

Protein causes mutations that lead to breast cancer cell aggression

U of A researcher uncovers new mechanism for why a particular biomarker is linked with poor outcomes in certain patients

Protein causes mutations that lead to breast cancer cell aggressionLike most scientists, University of Alberta biochemist Ing Swie Goping is curious. When her team discovered that a protein was associated with poor outcomes in breast cancer patients, she wanted to know why. Now, that curiosity has led to the discovery of a new mechanism for how certain breast cancers develop, which could one day…

Women’s and gender studies ideal training for med school: students

Three U of A medical students may have different backgrounds and interests, but they share a passion for reducing inequities in health – and in the health system

Women’s and gender studies ideal training for med school: studentsThe University of Alberta’s Faculty of Medicine & Dentistry this fall welcomed three students trained in women’s and gender studies (WGS), which they say has given them a unique perspective on their chosen profession. All three say gender studies have made them acutely aware of the social determinants of health – especially for vulnerable populations…
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