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Author: Meredith McGlone

Sharks may be able to protect us from coronavirus, research suggests. Here’s how

Miami Herald (McClatchy)

Although some may fear sharks when swimming in open waters, these often misunderstood creatures may hold a way to help protect us from the coronavirus, new research suggests. As one of the ocean’s top predators, sharks have antibody-like proteins that can stop the virus that causes COVID-19, according to a study published Dec. 16.

Do children’s books encourage gender stereotypes?

Daily Mail

Books designed for children may be perpetuating gender stereotypes, a new study warns.

More than 240 books written for children five years old and younger were analysed by a team from Carnegie Mellon University and the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

They found that books with a male main character were more often about professions, whereas those with a female protagonist were about affection.

A combo of therapies tackling metastatic cancer

WQAD Pittsburgh

Now scientists at the University of Pittsburgh and the University of Wisconsin-Madison are testing a combination of targeted radiation, given by injection, with immunotherapy.

“We’re just delivering a very low dose to stimulate the immune system, not necessarily kill cancer cells,” explained Dr. Patel.

The researchers tested the therapy in mice and found that even when the mice were given a low dose of radiotherapy their immune systems revved up and wiped out the cancer.

Scientists say they plan to apply for FDA approval to conduct human clinical trials on the combination therapy.

Flexibility in peptides may be more effective to treat diabetes: Study

Asia News International

According to a new research, peptides could be more effective to treat diabetes if they were more flexible and could move back and forth between different shapes.

The study has been published in the ‘Nature Chemical Biology Journal’.

The findings could help improve drug design for these diabetes drugs and possibly other therapeutic peptides.

Republicans could get behind a green jobs program. Just not this one.


“If I was an advisor to the Biden White House on communication, the first thing I would tell them was to not use the word ‘climate’ for anything like this,” said Dietram Scheufele, a communications professor at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. It erased an idea that resonated across the aisle — “conservation” sounds a whole lot like “conservative” — and replaced it with one “that’s going to make one side cringe,” Scheufele said.

Seeking refills: Aging pharmacists leave drugstores vacant in rural America

Kaiser Health News

“It’s going to be harder to attract people and to pay them,” said David Kreling, a professor emeritus at the University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Pharmacy. “If there’s not a generational thing where someone can sit down with their son or daughter and say that they could take the store over, there’s a good chance that pharmacy will evaporate.”

Kids under 5 still waiting for Covid-19 vaccine protection

Dr. Bill Hartman, who runs the Moderna Covid-19 vaccine trial for kids 6 months to 5 years at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, thinks a vaccine for this age group could be available as early as the “first month or two” of 2022.
Even that isn’t fast enough for some parents, but having worked on several trials during the pandemic, Hartman has been impressed with how quickly things can move when there are dedicated volunteers.
“I feel lucky to live in a city that has a population of people that really want to help us get answers so we can end this pandemic,” he said. “I tell the volunteers all the time that someday in the future, they will be able to tell a story about how they helped save the world.”

Let Us See It – Why companies with long histories should open up their archives


Op-ed by Gregg Mitman: Firms build worlds. On this, historians and businesspeople agree. Corporations have always been among the greatest forces shaping American life. And the many corporations that hold private archives documenting their past activities have unique powers to disclose—or hide—their contributions to racial injustice in America. That’s why, if they truly want to advance the cause of social justice, companies should throw open their archives for researchers to use.

14 Excerpts from Commencement Speeches Without the Word C*vid

New York Times

André De Shields

Mr. De Shields is an actor, director and choreographer. He was the keynote speaker at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Why is today different from any other day?

Because you are about to use the many years you have prepared to go out into the world and find employment.

But not just any employment. Here is my charge to you: Don’t look for just a job. Look for that horizon that if you do not discover it, it will forever remain a secret. Look for that treasure, that if you do not uncover it, it will forever remain just X marks the spot. Look for that mystery that if you don’t unravel it, it will forever remain a mystery.

Fasting and Finals: How Wisconsin’s universities help Muslim students cope

Wisconsin Muslim Journal

Ramadan is coinciding with the end of the university academic year. That means many Muslim students are under pressure to perform on exams, presentations and class projects while fasting from any food or drink for more than 15 hours a day.

Their parents and grandparents remember what it was like for them. Telling the Muslim equivalent of “walking 10 miles to school, barefoot in the snow,” the older generations talk about a time when their professors had never heard of Ramadan. If they had, the idea of adjusting exam schedules or making other accommodations for a handful of students practicing an obscure religion was out of the question.

UW–Madison meal service offers suhoor for fasting students

Wisconsin Muslim Journal

UW–Madison is one of a growing number of universities across the country offering special meal plans for Muslim students during Ramadan. University Housing’s Ramadan Meal Service offers Muslim students a breakfast bag of halal food options for suhoor that is delivered to a nearby dining hall for evening pick-up.

E-learning an emerging industry amid COVID-19 pandemic

Education Views via Xinhua

UM is not the only U.S. university that offers online courses to their students in China. University of Wisconsin-Madison (UW-Madison) is developing curriculum for how to academically succeed in a remote learning environment. The curriculum is to be offered in all 2020, John Lucas, executive director of University Communications at UW-Madison told Xinhua.

Two leaders urge colleges to encourage student voting

Inside Higher Ed

Chancellor Blank and Harvard University President Lawrence S. Bacow: If you are leading a college or university right now — or if you are making the academic year possible as a member of the faculty or staff at any one of our nation’s institutions of higher education — asking something more of your students in the midst of a global pandemic may seem impractical. But one assignment cannot wait. We urge you to encourage your students to register to vote, to become informed of the issues and the candidates, and to cast a ballot

Watch Madison sports teams belt out ‘The 12 Days of Christmas’

Wisconsin State Journal

The spirit of the season is more important than the ability to hold a tune.At least that’s what we’re telling ourselves after we got together groups of people representing Madison-area sports teams to sing “The 12 Days of Christmas.”Athletes, front office personnel, a coach and a mascot from these teams loaned their voices to the effort: University of Wisconsin volleyball, men’s and women’s golf, men’s and women’s hockey, men’s basketball and wrestling; Forward Madison FC; the Madison Capitols; Madison College women’s basketball; Edgewood College; Madison Memorial girls basketball; Stoughton wrestling and the Madison Mallards.

A Day In The Life Of The UW Marching Band

Wisconsin Public Television

WPR producer Tim Peterson and Wisconsin Life caught up with a pair of the band’s veterans and asked them about a few aspects of being part of the ensemble. He talked with Drum Major Justine Spore, a senior from Shorewood, Wisconsin who’s majoring in journalism. Peterson also spoke with Assistant Drum Major and Trombone Player Grant Petik, a junior from Fond du Lac who’s majoring in civil engineering.

Believing in Fairies: Marie Kondo and Our Oriental Attachments


Japan’s “floating world” has long provided the West with fantasies of both attachment and detachment, with the promise of refashioning our lives by “decluttering” and surrounding ourselves with only the most exquisite objects. Marie Kondo offers us a dream of minimalist Japanese beauty not unlike the dream of Japan that first enchanted the West in the Victorian period.

UW-Madison may expand physician assistants program to another UW campus

Wisconsin State Journal

UW-Madison is exploring a partnership with another University of Wisconsin System campus to address a shortage of physician assistants in rural areas, the university announced Wednesday.

Under a program offered through UW-Madison’s School of Medicine and Public Health, students would earn a degree through UW-Madison’s physician assistant program by taking classes at UW-Platteville.

School of Rock: UW professor jams with band Tent Show Troubadours at Summerfest stage

Badger Herald

Doug McLeod, Evjue Centennial Professor in the School of Journalism and Mass Communication, just finished teaching his Sports Marketing Communication course before educating the Summerfest crowd how to rock. Yes, that’s correct, McLeod is the co-founder and bass guitarist of Tent Show Troubadours. The quartet McLeod plays with opened for Young the Giant at the Uline Warehouse Stage.

UW Study: Irrigated Farms In Central Sands Region Linked To Cooler Temperatures

Wisconsin Public Radio

A new study on the irrigated farms of Wisconsin’s central sands region is suggesting that something farmers in more arid climates have known for a long time is also true in the Midwest: a high concentration of irrigated farms can cool regional climate.And while that initially sounds like a good thing, viewing irrigation as a defense against climate change is not the message, according to Mallika Nocco, lead author of the study out of the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Blue-Green Algae Blooms Frequent On Madison’s Lakes This Summer

Wisconsin Public Radio

Emily Stanley, a professor at the University of Wisconsin-Madison Center for Limnology and Department of Integrative Biology, said although they haven’t yet seen large blooms she describes as “epic” in Madison’s lakes, they are seeing frequent blooms. She said people should stay away from water that looks like it has white, blue or green foam floating on the top.

News from around our 50 states – minimum wage

USA Today

An expert on poverty says the state should raise its minimum wage and provide more help for families who are struggling despite record-low unemployment. University of Wisconsin-Madison professor Timothy Smeeding co-wrote a report that found Wisconsin’s poverty rate has remained stagnant for nearly a decade, fluctuating between 10% and 11% from 2008 to 2017.

Guilty Pleasures? No Such Thing

New York Times

“A guilty pleasure is something that we enjoy, but we know we’re either not supposed to like, or that liking it says something negative about us,” said Sami Schalk, an assistant professor of gender and women’s studies at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

“That negative thing often ends up being an association with categories of identity we disparage and marginalize in society,” according to Dr. Schalk.

For discussion of women’s soccer equality, let’s talk about concussion

USA Today

Assistant Professor Traci Snedden from the School of Nursing: As we watch the Women’s World Cup and the sheer athleticism of these elite female players, what we don’t see is the lagging research on concussion injury in girl’s and women’s soccer. The rate of concussion among female soccer players has been called an unpublicized epidemic.

UW-Madison cook makes 900 eggs a day any way students like ’em

The Cap Times

Seeman said her goal is to bring “a little smile” to the faces of the hundreds of UW-Madison students she serves each day.“After almost 30 years, the highlight of my day is being able to say good morning to everyone who is standing there just waking up,” Seeman said. “Even if they’ve had a rough night or rough morning and they come in for their omelette at 11 o’clock in the morning, you gotta smile, you gotta say, ‘Hi, how’s it going?’ So at least, if they are having a bad day, it’s like ‘OK, it’s good.’”

Some Universities Work to Ensure an Inclusive Future by Acknowledging Their Inequitable Pasts

Insight Into Diversity

In recent years, some colleges and universities have set out on the long path of addressing their historic ties to systems rooted in white supremacy, including slavery, the Confederacy, and hate groups. Against the backdrop of a resurgence in white nationalism, this work has only grown in urgency and significance. At the same time, many institutions have deepened their commitment to atoning for their past by working to build a more inclusive future.

UW-Madison gets $100 million, tech partnership from Foxconn

Education Dive

The combined $200 million is part of the university’s ongoing $3.2 billion All Ways Forward fundraising campaign. Foxconn’s funding will primarily support a new building for the College of Engineering on the UW-Madison campus, while any facilities related to the FIRST initiative are still to be determined, the representative said, noting that “there is no predetermined list” of university departments that will have access to the interdisciplinary program. Foxconn’s contributions will also help provide opportunities for internships and applied learning in campus labs.

Paid internship program allows local high school students to explore careers


The Madison Metropolitan School District partnered with UW-Madison to give kids in high school a chance to explore a future career in health care and veterinary medicine.The LEAP Forward internship program is part of the district’s Personalized Pathways initiative, designed to let kids try out their interests through a summer internship at one of seven campus sites, including the School of Veterinary Medicine and University Health Services.

Prepare for the Onslaught of Japanese Beetles

Ag Professional

If you see Japanese beetles in your corn fields it could mean poor pollination is imminent. The pest loves to snack on corn’s delicate silks—and if they clip them to ½” or less the crop might not pollinate.

Consider a foliar insecticide treatment during tasseling and silking if there are three or more beetles per ear, silks are clipped to ½” and pollination is less than 50% complete, according to Eileen Cullen, University of Wisconsin Extension entomologist.

“[If applying an insecticide] beetles must be on the outside of the ear, which is normally the case,” Cullen says “The main concern with Japanese beetle feeding is to protect silks for pollination.”

Check out these six money lessons you didn’t learn in high school

Reading Eagle

A spending plan shows how overspending one week will leave you with a cash shortage the next week. Even a $50 shortfall can feel stressful, said J. Michael Collins, faculty director for the Center for Financial Security at University of Wisconsin, Madison.”You’re doing this plan to create ways to reduce the stress you have on yourself, so you’re not behind and trying to catch up,” Collins said.

Researchers trace Parkinson’s damage in the heart


By the time Parkinson’s disease patients are diagnosed — typically based on the tremors and motor-control symptoms most associated with the disease — about 60 percent of them also have serious damage to the heart’s connections to the sympathetic nervous system. When healthy, those nerves spur the heart to accelerate its pumping to match quick changes in activity and blood pressure.”This neural degeneration in the heart means patients’ bodies are less prepared to respond to stress and to simple changes like standing up,” says Marina Emborg, a University of Wisconsin-Madison professor of medical physics and Parkinson’s researcher at the Wisconsin National Primate Research Center. “They have increased risk for fatigue, fainting and falling that can cause injury and complicate other symptoms of the disease.”

Astronomers trace cosmic ray neutrino back to remote blazar

Astronomy Now

The initial detection by the IceCube Neutrino Observatory in Antarctica, and subsequent observations of high energy radiation from the same source by space telescopes and ground-based observatories, indicate such black holes act as the particle accelerators responsible for at least some of those cosmic rays.“The evidence for the observation of the first known source of high-energy neutrinos and cosmic rays is compelling,” said Francis Halzen, a University of Wisconsin–Madison professor of physics and the lead scientist for the IceCube Neutrino Observatory.