News highlights for February 15, 2011

CisionPoint news monitoring provides this small sampling of the university's daily news coverage. Click headline to read full text via Cision or link directly to the online article where available. For questions or comments about this service, or to add or delete a name from the mailing list, please contact Gerry Everding.

U.S. News & World Report | HealthDay News

Eating breakfast may lead teen moms to better health


Teenagers, generally not renowned for their good eating habits, tend to have healthier weights and snacking habits when they start the day with breakfast, according to a study co-authored by Debra Haire-Joshu, a professor and director of the Center for Obesity Prevention and Policy Research at the Brown School of Social Work at Washington University in St. Louis. Link to Article See also, Times of India

Related news release

The Boston Globe
Autistic kids get fewer services as they age

As children diagnosed with autism spectrum disorders age, they are less likely to use special services after high school. Researcher Paul Shattuck of Washington University in St. Louis said the drop in speech therapy is especially concerning. Shattuck said many people with autism spectrum disorders have trouble reading verbal and visual cues in everyday conversation, making it difficult for them to communicate, and even harder to find and keep a job. Link to Article

Related release

Science Watch

John Morris on preventive therapies for Alzheimer dementia

WUSTL’s John C. Morris answers a few questions about this month’s Fast Breaking Paper in the field of Neuroscience & Behavior. Morris is a co-author of the paper, APOE Predicts Amyloid-Beta but Not Tau Alzheimer Pathology in Cognitively Normal Aging, which shows that changes in the brain that ultimately produce the symptoms of Alzheimer disease begin many years, perhaps decades, before Alzheimer dementia can be diagnosed. Link to Article
Related new release

Internal Medicine News

Changing indications in pediatric heart transplants


Over the past 24 years, the prevalence of indications for pediatric heart transplantation resulting from congenital heart disease has changed. Dr. Rochus K. Voeller and his colleagues at Washington University in St. Louis reviewed trends in the indications for transplant and survival following transplant. “Risk factor analysis will be needed to determine which patients might benefit from earlier transplant referral and how to better prepare these patients for transplant in order to reduce the risk of the procedure,” he concluded. Link to Article

Genetic Engineering & Biotechnology News

McDonnell Foundation announces 2010 grants for the 21st Century Science Initiative Awards

The James S. McDonnell Foundation today announced more than $24 million in grants through their ongoing program, the 21st Century Science Initiative. Washington University in St. Louis will receive $1,170,403 over three years for a study of communities and criticality in brain networks across development and in ADHD. Steven E. Petersen is the principal investigator. Link to Article

Biofuels Digest

Algae keep on rockin’ in the free world: Pt 2, Get this party started

An overview of “movers and shakers” in the algal biofuels industry includes a listing for the National Alliance for Advanced Biofuels and Bioproducts. Washington University in St. Louis is a member of the Alliance, which last year received a $44 million grant from the Department of Energy. Principal investigator and organizer Jose Olivares notes: “It’s the first time I’ve put a consortium of this size together. You learn as you go,” Link to Article


Man accused of mugging college students behind bars

A man accused of mugging college students and chasing them through University City is behind bars tonight. Two Washington University sophomores were walking at Melville and Waterman around 8 p.m. last night. They noticed four men yelling at them. Someone punched one of the students and stole his wallet and cell phone. Police later arrested two of the suspects. Link to Broadcast

See also KSDK News at 5, KDNL-TV News, Belleville News Democrat, All Voices, University City Patch

St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Prairie dogs step up their game when crowds gather

It turns out that those of us who have stood watching the adorable prairie dogs at the St. Louis Zoo were giving as much as we were getting. Seems the twitchy little rodents love an audience. After watching a captive crew of 25 black-tailed prairie dogs at the Zoo for nearly a year and a half, biology student Adam Eltorai of Washington University concluded the bigger the crowd, the more the chubby rodents kiss and cuddle. Link to Article

St. Louis Post-Dispatch
More on Ultimate Electronics’ going-out-of-business sale

The liquidators handling the going-out-of-business sales at Ultimate Electronics finally put out a press release this afternoon about the store closings and related sales. Martin Sneider, an adjunct professor of retailing at Washington University, said this is a popular time of year for companies to call it quits. “Most retailers do a huge percentage of their business in the holidays — and the hope is that the holiday sales and the cash that flows from it will see them through the spring,” he said. Link to Article

St. Louis Beacon

Rosalynn Carter challenges mental-health system


Rosalynn Carter believes that the stigma associated with mental illness can cause as much harm as the disease itself. Instead of shunning the victims, the wife of former President Jimmy Carter says people need to educate themselves about mental health and embrace recovery and prevention. Carter was the lead speaker Monday at a forum on mental health, hosted by Washington University’s Brown School of Social Work at Graham Chapel. Link to Article

News in Higher Education

New York Times

Obama’s budget proposes a significant increase for schools

President Obama proposed a 2012 Department of Education budget on Monday that would, if approved, significantly increase federal spending for public schools, and maintain the maximum Pell grant — the cornerstone financial-aid program — at $5,550 per college student. Whether it will be possible to keep that Pell maximum remains uncertain, however, given that House Republicans have proposed cutting the maximum by about $845, or 15 percent, in their proposal to extend the current budget. Link to Article

New York Times | The Choice blog

A college opts out of the admissions arms race
In an era in which universities are expected to draw more and more applicants each year — as if they were Fortune 500 companies being forced to show annual profits — Ursinus College, a liberal arts institution outside of Philadelphia, would seem to have little reason to celebrate. Applicants for this fall’s freshman class have plunged by 1,700 — or nearly a third — when compared with this time last year. And yet, Richard DiFeliciantonio, the university’s vice president of enrollment, said in an interview on Monday that the drop was not only welcome but deliberate, Link to Article

Boston Globe

Conservatism 101

Conservatives have long complained about the lack of intellectual diversity in courses taught in American universities. But last November’s shake-up could be shaking up the liberal Ivy League. This semester, Brown University is offering a new course on political conservatism. The university said the course is unrelated to current events, and reflects Brown’s commitment to “broad-based academic inquiry and intellectual exploration.’’ But the fact that the Leadership Institute — a group dedicated to increasing “the number and effectiveness of conservative students, activists, and leaders in the public policy process’’ — sent out a congratulatory press release reflects another reality. Link to Article

For additional higher education news (subscription may be required):
The Chronicle of Higher Education
Inside Higher Ed
University Business

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