Category » Healthy People

Facing Cascadia
May 19, 2016

Facing Cascadia

By preparing for the inevitable, we will save lives

IN JAPAN, NEARLY 20,000 PEOPLE DIED in the 2011 Tohoku earthquake and tsunami. The tragic aftermath struck home in the Pacific Northwest, which faces a similar risk from the Cascadia subduction zone. But we often forget the silver lining. In Japan, there were nearly 200,000 people in the inundation zones, so 90 percent of the […]


Making Art in Wild Places
May 19, 2016

Making Art in Wild Places

“Creative Coast” students go to the sea for inspiration

LAST SPRING, students studying music, video, theater and visual arts took a walk in the woods. When they came out, their creative spirits were infused with the sounds, textures, shapes and colors of the Hopkins Demonstration Forest. Music student Ryan Zubieta listened to the sounds around him — water running over stones, branches clicking together, […]


Deaths, Injuries Dog Crab Industry
May 19, 2016

Deaths, Injuries Dog Crab Industry

Researchers work with fishermen to improve safety

COMMERCIAL DUNGENESS CRAB FISHING on the West Coast is one of the riskiest jobs in the United States, based on fatality rates. But nonfatal injuries in the fishery often go unreported, a study from Oregon State University shows. “The commercial Dungeness fishing fleet, which operates along the coast of Oregon, Washington and Northern California, is […]


Fly Fishing for Body, Soul, Mind
May 19, 2016

Fly Fishing for Body, Soul, Mind

A convergence of science, literature and fitness

A FLY-FISHING LINE arcs above a river. The hand-tied fly — chosen to match whichever aquatic insect has hatched that morning — settles on the water. In casting that line, a fly fisherman enters into the life of the river, intuitively, intellectually, intimately. A new “cross-linked” course at Oregon State University, The Art, Science and […]


Forecast for Africa
February 3, 2016

Forecast for Africa

Weather stations serve schools, farmers and fishermen

In the summer of 2012, Zachary Dunn climbed onto the roof of a red-brick schoolhouse in Lela, a small village in southwestern Kenya. A crowd of children milled about on the ground, watching him attach a small weather station to the peak. It was the rainy season, overcast and cool enough for a long-sleeved shirt. […]


Curious Romps Through Reality
February 3, 2016

Curious Romps Through Reality

Animal icons are Elena Passarello’s latest journey

When Elena Passarello was growing up in Atlanta, she began to write as a way to have “company.” Brought up in a house where she was the only child, she made magazines and newspapers for her imaginary friends to read, she says, smiling at the memory of her earliest literary steps. She found her first […]


Fat and Bones
February 3, 2016

Fat and Bones

Gene therapy shows promise for saving bone during weight loss

“Yo-yo” dieting isn’t just a problem for your clothing budget as you try to keep up with your fluctuating jean size. It’s also bad for your bones. As unwanted pounds melt away, a dieter’s skeleton typically loses mass and strength. When the pounds come back, the lost bone doesn’t. That conundrum is the focus of […]


February 3, 2016

New Muscular Dystrophy Drug

Advance in personalized medicine

A drug developed in Corvallis and Perth, Australia, to treat a genetic disorder may also represent a promising advance in personalized medicine. Eteplirsen targets Duchenne muscular dystrophy, which leads to muscle degeneration and weakness. The pharmaceutical emerged from research by Patrick Iversen at Oregon State and is now being developed by Sarepta Therapeutics. Duchenne arises […]


Book Notes
February 3, 2016

Book Notes

Recent publications by Oregon State faculty

The Last Love Song Tracy Daugherty This work by professor emeritus Tracy Daugherty is the first printed biography of American writer Joan Didion. The narrative traces her life from her youth in Sacramento to her marriage and partnership with her late husband, writer John Gregory Dunne, and beyond.   The Spark and the Drive Wayne […]


Mediating Scientific Conflicts
February 3, 2016

Mediating Scientific Conflicts

A facilitated process for discovery and solution

Conflicts over the management of water, timber, climate change, endangered species and grazing can tear apart communities and have real impacts on local economies. And when scientists are invited to settle the issues, experts can become mired in their own conflicts. Even large multidisciplinary research projects can fall into divisions that threaten the scientific process […]


The Accidental Researcher
February 3, 2016

The Accidental Researcher

How a serendipitous undergraduate research job set me on my path

I count myself an “accidental” researcher. That’s because my career would have turned out quite differently, no doubt, had I not stumbled into a college class that changed everything. I was an undergrad at the University of Iowa in the early 1980s, working in the hematology lab at the teaching hospital to support my studies, […]


Familiar Faces
February 3, 2016

Familiar Faces

For those with disabilities, a positive identity starts with community

In the midst of a conversation about disability science, student research projects and her own scholarly endeavors, Kathleen Bogart pauses. How will the world be different if she succeeds in her work, the interviewer asks. What will change? A social psychologist at Oregon State University who studies the stigma of being viewed as “disabled,” as […]


Animal Behavior
January 1, 2016

Animal Behavior

The costs of kindness

Walking the dog has been my daily ritual for the better part of 20 years. Our current mutt — a pint-sized rat terrier/blue healer mix  named Roo — loyally defends her home turf and isn’t kind to strangers. When neighbor kids ask if they can pet the cute dog with the inquisitive face, I thank […]


Arsenic in Rural Oregon
October 28, 2015

Arsenic in Rural Oregon

Graduate student looked for pattern of contamination

When it comes to water, Lauren Smitherman doesn’t mind getting a little personal. As a graduate student in Water Resources Science at Oregon State University, she asked people in rural Oregon for permission to collect samples of their drinking water. Assured of confidentiality, most people welcomed her into their kitchens where Smitherman ran a stream […]


Swallowing the Guilt Pill
October 15, 2015

Swallowing the Guilt Pill

Tim Jensen explains how consumers are led to internalize environmental degradation

“Our emotions are being targeted by corporate interests to internalize the wrongs that have been done to the environment,” explains Tim Jensen.


Biology Through Numbers
October 15, 2015

Biology Through Numbers

Hiring initiative combines science and information technologies

The generation of huge data sets in gene-sequencing and computer-modeling labs challenges scientists to develop new approaches to information. “Genomics and biocomputing are important areas for the university, and we have invested in faculty in this area in the past two hiring cycles,” says Provost Sabah Randhawa. Through the Biological Informatics and Genomics (BIG) initiative, […]


Diet and the Microbiome
October 15, 2015

Diet and the Microbiome

Building evidence toward dietary recommendations

The gut microbiome — a teeming mass of bacteria, fungi, viruses, archaea and protozoans that live in our lower gastrointestinal tracts — has captured the attention of health-conscious consumers. Through controlled studies with mice, scientists have learned that by manipulating the microbiome, we can induce weight loss, affect pain perception and decrease hormonal responses to […]


More Microbiome Studies at Oregon State
October 15, 2015

More Microbiome Studies at Oregon State

Researchers explore impacts on cognition, disease and immune function

Your Brain on Microbes Chemicals produced by microbes in our intestines may affect the brain. In a study with laboratory mice, Kathy Magnusson and her colleagues have demonstrated that adaptability, short-term memory and learning for long-term memory are related to the microbiome and what we eat. “This suggests that it’s not just about the food […]


Five Facts About the Microbiome
October 15, 2015

Five Facts About the Microbiome

UNKNOWN PROTEINS As scientists sequence DNA in microbiome samples, they are discovering new building blocks of life. About 30 percent of the genes in genomes sequenced in large-scale studies code for proteins that are new to science. MICROBES IN HUMANS Estimates of the number of nonhuman cells in our bodies range from 30 trillion to […]


Gut Check
October 15, 2015

Gut Check

Intestinal microbes affect our health

We’ve all gone through it and wished we hadn’t: growing discomfort, a stomachache and nausea, maybe vomiting and diarrhea. For most of us, symptoms pass in a day or two. We call it “stomach flu” or “food poisoning.” But for Pat (not her real name), the symptoms did not improve, so she went to her […]


Stormy Waters
October 15, 2015

Stormy Waters

Joe Kemper helps solve a local dispute over flooding and ditches

Maneuvering a tiny boat over thundering ledges in places like Oregon’s Opal Creek Wilderness is no more dodgy than facilitating a series of community meetings in a tiny Coast Range town.


The Language of the Sublime
October 14, 2015

The Language of the Sublime

Henry Sayre’s written and spoken stories about art have opened countless students’ eyes

Art historian Henry Sayre has traveled to Europe dozens of times as a scholar — or, more precisely, as a pilgrim. He has shared his passion for art with millions of students in classrooms, virtual as well as physical, and in the pages of his written works, which include the bestselling textbook, A World of Art.


A Poison in Small Doses
October 13, 2015

A Poison in Small Doses

Public health scientists investigate arsenic

Thousands of wells in Bangladesh are contaminated with arsenic from groundwater aquifers. Oregon State University researchers are studying the health consequences of low-dose exposure in rural communities.


Elusive Equity
May 13, 2015

Elusive Equity

Oregon State tackles the persistent bias inhibiting women in STEM fields

“It is not lack of talent, but unintentional biases and outmoded institutional structures that are hindering the access and advancement of women.”
— Beyond Bias and Barriers, National Academy of Sciences


Kathleen Bogart
May 13, 2015

Kathleen Bogart

Assistant Professor, School of Psychological Sciences

Kathleen Bogart doesn’t take communication for granted. Even as a child, she was aware that people responded to her differently. She was born with Moebius Syndrome, a condition that causes facial paralysis and difficulty in moving eyes from side to side. She had to work to make herself understood. In college, Bogart found that Moebius […]


Margaret Burnett
May 13, 2015

Margaret Burnett

Professor of Computer Science, School of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science

When Margaret Burnett was growing up in the 1960s, being a female with a gift for math led to one likely career: teaching. She didn’t see herself in front of a classroom, but when a neighbor got a job with IBM after majoring in math in college, Burnett saw an opportunity. As an undergraduate at […]


Lisa Gaines
May 13, 2015

Lisa Gaines

Director, Institute for Natural Resources

Lisa Gaines’ grandmother made it a priority to educate her girls. “I will educate my daughters before I educate my sons,” Gaines remembers her saying. Gaines’ grandmother lived her entire life in the black community in St. Louis and saw that young men “always found a way of making it through, but women did not.” […]


Julie Greenwood
May 13, 2015

Julie Greenwood

Associate Dean for Academic and Student Affairs, College of Science

A video in Julie Greenwood’s lab catches cancer cells in the act of invading the brain. They are glioblastoma cells, agents of the same disease that killed Senator Ted Kennedy. “Glioblastoma cells are very effective at invading the neighboring tissue of the brain,” says Greenwood. “In many cases, these cells sprint.” Although surgery is often […]


Catalina Segura
May 13, 2015

Catalina Segura

Assistant Professor, College of Forestry

As the daughter of a physics professor and a lawyer, Catalina Segura set her sites on working in a university. Her father was “truly excited to use science to make a difference,” she recalls. “He was very inspiring.” But growing up in Bogotá, Colombia, which ranks among the world’s 25 largest cities, Segura turned her […]


Holly Swisher
May 13, 2015

Holly Swisher

Associate Professor, Department of Mathematics

In her first year in college (Pacific Lutheran in Tacoma), music almost won out over mathematics for Holly Swisher’s attention. During her high school years in Salem, she had played piano and bassoon in a youth symphony, sang in a choir and even played drums in the marching band. But her love of math wouldn’t […]