News: Research


Using human genome, scientists build CRISPR for RNA to open pathways for medicine

June 24, 2019

A group of scientists from the University of Chicago has announced a breakthrough method to alter RNA—and instead of using a protein from bacteria, like CRISPR, the new system is built out of parts from the human genome. Announced June 20 in Cell, the discovery could open new pathways for treating diseases or injuries by temporarily altering how the genetic template is carried out in the cell. 

Scientists use atoms to simulate quantum physics in curved spacetimes

June 24, 2019

A team of physicists at the University of Chicago has built a quantum system to simulate the physics of Unruh radiation. The breakthrough advances our understanding of these complex physics—and could ultimately help us explain how the largest and smallest phenomena in the universe fit together. 

Scientists utilize Paleoproteomics to rewrite sloth classification

June 6, 2019

 In a recent study, Prof. Slater from Geophysical Sciences, along with Samantha Presslee (University of York) and Ross MacPhee (American Museum of Natural History), utilized Paleoproteomics to point out differences between two and three-toed sloths—effectively rewriting sloth classification. 

Scientist’s work on knotted vortices featured by PBS host of Physics Girl, Dianna Corwen

May 31, 2019

William Irvine, professor of physics, appears on Physics Girl to explain the process of creating knotted vortices, a phenomenon that occurs with airplanes during takeoff, by accelerating 3D-printed models in water. 

Scientists recreate a cell division outside a cell for first time

May 31, 2019

Margaret Gardel, professor of physics at the University of Chicago, led an innovative new study, which for the first time recreates the mechanism of cell division—outside a cell. The experiment published May 21 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, helps scientists understand the physics by which cells carry out their everyday activities, and could one day lead to medical breakthroughs, ideas for new kinds of materials or even artificial cells. 

UChicago physicists to study macroscopic quantum phenomena as part of the Simons Collaboration

May 28, 2019

Dam T. Son, University Professor in the Department of Physics, and Michael Levin, Associate Professor in the Department of Physics, have been awarded a Simons Foundation grant as part of the newly established Simons Collaboration on Ultra-Quantum Matter.

Scientists discover ancient seawater preserved from the last Ice Age

May 24, 2019

Assistant professor in the Department of Geophysical Sciences, Clara Blättler, led a study that recently announced the discovery of the first-ever pockets of seawater dating to the last Ice Age, about 20,000 years ago, tucked inside rock formations in the middle of the Indian Ocean.

Northwestern University joins Chicago Quantum Exchange

May 14, 2019

Northwestern University became the newest member of the Chicago Quantum Exchange, a growing intellectual hub for the research and development of quantum technology.

UChicago BIG program funds ambitious, risky scientific research

May 9, 2019

Assistant Professor in the Department of the Geophysical Sciences, Maureen Coleman, and microbiologist Sean Crosson use water samples from Lake Michigan to study the genes of model microbes in their natural habitats.

Scientists design method to build molecules that could be drugs—in half the steps

May 9, 2019

A study by University of Chicago chemists offers a new approach that could significantly cut the time and effort needed to make molecules that are important for pharmaceuticals in half.

Prof. R. Stephen Berry discusses new book on thermodynamics and need for scientific literacy

April 29, 2019

The James Franck Distinguished Service Professor Emeritus in Chemistry, R. Stephen Berry, discusses his new book that aims for improving scientific literacy and his pioneering research in thermodynamics that began with a landmark idea called the “life-cycle analysis".

UChicago graduate student uses Alaskan seashells to track climate change

April 29, 2019

Graduate student Caitlin Meadows analyzed 14,000 shells from the Arctic seafloor, which reflect a shift in the ecosystem from arctic to sub-arctic within the last few decades.

Computer scientists design a way to defend against attacks to AI-based security systems

April 26, 2019

In a new published paper, a group from Prof. Ben Zhao and Prof. Heather Zheng’s SAND Lab describe the first generalized defense against backdoor attacks in neural networks.

Scientists measure half-life of element that’s longer than the age of the universe

April 25, 2019

Using the XENON1T experiment, a giant detector deep under an Italian mountainside, UChicago scientists documented the decay of atoms of xenon-124, the rarest process ever observed in the universe.

Scientists climb UChicago buildings to study air quality and pollution

April 22, 2019

Researchers from UChicago and Harvard University are using Rockefeller Memorial Chapel and Knapp Center for Biomedical Discovery to collect data that will be used to create a map of the air around Chicago’s urban center and what it contains.