UCI News

Spectrum News 1, Jan. 11, 2022 (Video)
UCI researchers create method for paying for things with a high-five
Some scientists in Irvine have created a flexible fabric that could help unlock doors without the use of a key or badge and make a payment with a wave of a hand or even a high-five. “It’s technology at the tip of our hand to use it on demand,” said Amir Hajiaghajani, a PhD candidate at the University of California, Irvine, who helped create the technology. … UCI electrical engineering and computer science [Assistant] Professor Peter Tseng … said it has the potential to measure and transmit a patient’s vital signs with their invention in a hospital gown ….

KCRW, Jan. 11, 2022 (Audio)
Pandemic stress impairs the brain’s interlocking tree branches. You can restore them
“When we have a brief stress, … planning for, say, a wedding or an event, that’s okay. … The problem arises when you have very prolonged levels of stress,” … explains [Professor] Michael Yassa, director of UC Irvine Center for the Neurobiology of Learning and Memory. “And the longer that we’re in that stress state, the longer that the brain is in this compromised or problematic state.” Yassa says people must create a healthier lifestyle …. “Chief among them, I would say sleep and exercise would be the top two. If we can master those … then we’re really doing like 90% of what we need to do.”

Healthline, Jan. 10, 2022
Why Omicron COVID-19 Cases Are Usually Less Severe Than Delta Cases
Dr. Shruti K. Gohil, an associate medical director of epidemiology & infection prevention, infectious diseases at the University of California Irvine, said that there may be a simple explanation for the less serious cases. “The Omicron variant is seven times more efficient in replicating in the upper airways” than previous variants of the coronavirus, Gohil told Healthline. However, the Omicron variant tends to remain in the upper respiratory system rather than replicating in the lungs. “That’s what makes it tremendously contagious but also less severe,” Gohil said.

Voice of OC, Jan 12, 2022
Demand for OC Senior Programs Surges During COVID-19, Pointing to A Bigger Problem Ahead
How will local government services and businesses incentivize healthy behaviors and help prevent people from lapsing into cognitive issues as they age? That’s a major point of concern for Sara Mednick, a professor at the University of California, Irvine’s Dept. of Cognitive Science, who says things like parks – “places where people can enjoy their days outside and be active” – can help. But like food insecurity or health care, it’s also an equity issue, she said. “We must create that opportunity for everyone,” Mednick said ….

Mongabay, Jan. 11, 2022
The thick of it: Delving into the neglected global impacts of human waste
Joleah Lamb, assistant professor of ecology and evolutionary biology at the University of California, Irvine, who led the Myanmar research, is carrying out a similar study in the Seattle area in collaboration with the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife …. Previously, she says, anti-depressants, chemotherapy drugs, heart medications and opioids have been found in Seattle area mussels, potentially linked to wastewater treatment plants and combined sewer overflows. “We’re also finding very similar types of pathogens in these mussels that we’re finding in Myanmar. So, it’s not just a problem that we’re having in places like Asia,” Lamb noted.

Previously “In the News”