UCI News

KNBC, July 19, 2022
‘Science Now is Very Social’: Inside the Particle Physics Conference That Helps Shape 10 Years of Research
“I think a lot of laypeople think of scientific progress as something made by some genius sitting at their table, who has some sort of “Eureka” moment,” said Jonathan Lee Feng, [Distinguished] Professor of physics and astronomy at UC Irvine. But that idea isn’t quite accurate. “Science now is very social, and relies on interactions,” he explained — and those interactions and collaborations happen at conferences like Snowmass …. It’s a very collaborative process, and one that actually begins years in advance of the conference date, according to Pedro Ochoa-Ricoux, an associate professor at UC Irvine.

Los Angeles Times, July 20, 2022
California fires are so severe some forests might vanish forever
“Because the last couple years have been so massive for fires, the forests don’t have a chance to keep up or recover in time,” said Jon Wang, an Earth system scientist at UC Irvine. “There is an acceleration of the fire regime that is overwhelming these forests.” … The research provides evidence that these forests haven’t reached a new steady state in the midst of the altered fire regime, resulting in a net loss of trees, said co-author Jim Randerson, professor of earth system science at UC Irvine. [Subscription required, you can request an electronic copy of the article by sending an email to communications@uci.edu.]

Good Housekeeping, July 19, 2022
It Is Possible to Teach Your Kids — Or Yourself — to Be More Creative
“The reality is that creativity is fostered over time,” says Andres S. Bustamante, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Human Development in Context at the School of Education of the University of California, Irvine. … “The best way to foster creativity and exercise their imaginations in a child is through play,” says Bustamante. … “When children play — especially with others — they are presented with all types of challenges, and they’re given the agency to solve them using their imagination while expressing their interests and talents.”

Spectrum News 1, July 19, 2022
‘It should have been given a new Greek letter’: New coronavirus variant surges
The coronavirus summer wave has some medical experts worried the winter wave will be worse. The new iteration goes by BA.5, appearing to be an offshoot of the omicron variant. But Andrew Noymer, a University of California, Irvine [associate] professor of population health and disease, said that’s the wrong way of looking at it. “The differences are great,” he said. “Having a previous omicron infection doesn’t protect you against BA.5. People need to be aware this is really a new game. People can get it if they got it a few months ago. It’s really new, and not a shade of omicron. It should have been given a new Greek letter.”

Psychiatric Times, July 19, 2022
Brain Inflammation May Link Alzheimer Disease With Sleep Disturbance
“Our findings indicate that age-related increases in brain inflammation have a downstream effect on Alzheimer’s disease-related tau proteins and neuronal synaptic integrity. This results in deficits in the brain’s capacity to generate fast sleep spindles, which contribute to age-related memory impairment in older adults,” said Bryce Mander, PhD, assistant professor of psychiatry and human behavior at the University of California, Irvine, and lead and co-corresponding author on the study. … “Discovering these mechanisms is an important step in identifying at-risk individuals as early as possible and developing targeted interventions,” Mander said.

Previously “In the News”