News highlights for February 4, 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.

The Pitch

Carmon Colangelo to speak at Epperson Auditorium, Kansas City

Carmon Colangelo, a pioneering printmaker whose work combines surrealism and abstraction with the exploration of art history, science and technology, will speak as part of the Current Perspectives Lecture Series at 7 p.m. Feb 24 in the Epperson Auditorium in Kansas City. Colangelo is dean of the Sam Fox School of Design & Visual Arts at Washington University in St. Louis where he holds the E. Desmond Lee Professorship for Collaboration in the Arts. Link to Article

Materials Views

Nanofiber membranes for cell microarrays


Cells tend to be a little anarchistic; if there are no major obstacles, they just grow wherever they want. Dealing with this sort of cell microarray usually involves complex and time-consuming procedures, but Younan Xia and co-workers from Washington University, chose a simpler method: They produced a nanofiber membrane with defined microwells and a structured surface via electrospinning. Link to Article

Miami Herald / McClatchy News

New Congress spends little time in session


Hill watchers say the first month of a new Congress usually isn’t a good barometer of its work habits. “Congress has two functions: One is representation, the other is lawmaking,” said Steven Smith, a political science professor at Washington University in St. Louis and a former congressional aide. “You can’t represent constituents well if you’re sitting on the floor of the Senate. You have to actually be out visiting people.” Link to Article

Minneapolis Post
Will the NFL’s head-injury crisis lead to football’s demise?

A recent study has found that many NFL players are misusing painkillers. A major reason for this misuse of the drugs is an undiagnosed concussion. “Many of these players explained that they didn’t want to see a physician about their concussions at the time,” said study co-author and Washington University (St. Louis) epidemiologist Simone Cummings. “These men said they knew if they reported a concussion, they might not be allowed to play.” Link to Article

CBS News/ KMOX Radio St. Louis

‘Risky’ teens more likely to face unwanted pregnancies


Washington University researchers have found that teens involved in risky health behaviors are more likely than others to become pregnant or to impregnate others. Lead researcher Dr. Patricia Cavazos Rehg says the group at highest risk doesn’t seem to be doing much to lower their risk. “It just doesn’t appear that those kids most at risk are modifying their behaviors,” Rehg said. Link to Article

St. Louis Business Journal

Medical businesses win Olin Cup business plan competition


NanoMed LLC, a company developing a novel nanofiber for use in neurosurgical operations, won a $50,000 grand prize for Washington University’s 2010 Olin Cup business plan competition. Another medical company, PulmoCad LLC, received the second place $20,000 prize. Washington University’s Skandalaris Center for Entrepreneurial Studies announced the two winners Thursday evening. Link to Article

St. Louis Post-Dispatch
EPA rejects permit for U.S. Steel’s Granite City Works

The Environmental Protection Agency has rejected parts of an air permit issued by Illinois regulators for U.S. Steel Corp.’s Granite City Works and sent the permit back to the state. The Illinois EPA issued the permit in September 2009. The Interdisciplinary Environmental Clinic at Washington University School of Law filed an appeal with the EPA a month later on behalf of American Bottom Conservancy, a Metro East-based environmental group. Link to Article

St. Louis Business Journal

Venture funding in St. Louis on the rise

Venture capital investments in St. Louis more than doubled last year, reaching $39 million on 11 deals. But venture capital firms were playing a more conservative game in 2010 — funneling most of their cash into existing businesses and little into early-stage companies. One of the early-stage companies in St. Louis receiving venture capital last year was PixelEXX Systems, a nanotechnology firm founded by Washington University researchers including Dr. Samuel Wickline. It received $1.9 million from an undisclosed investor. Link to Article

St. Louis Business Journal

Startups await boost from Arch Angels

Six startups can expect backing totaling at least $900,000 from the St. Louis Arch Angels. Gil Bickel III, chairman of the group of wealthy, private investors, said the seed capital fund plans to invest a minimum of $150,000 into each startup, one of which is Blendics, a business that designs tools used to develop complex microcircuits. Blendics is led by president and co-founder Jerome Cox, a senior professor of engineering at Washington University. Link to Article

Nicklaus: Deficit-cutting gimmicks would hurt more than help

Missouri’s Democratic Senator Claire McCaskill signed on last week as a sponsor of the Commitment to American Prosperity, or CAP, bill, which would limit federal spending to 20.6 percent of gross domestic product. Murray Weidenbaum, the Washington University economist, suggests a much simpler way for McCaskill and her colleagues to bring down the deficit. “Just get Congress to appropriate less,” he says. “The debt ceiling generates all kinds of uncertainty in itself, and I have problems with all of these gimmicks. It’s a lousy way of running the government.” Link to Article

Daily RFT

Super Bowl commercials are so last millennium

Quick: What’s your bet for the first Super Bowl ad on Sunday — Budweiser, Pepsi or Ford? Or, how about Option 4: Who cares? That’s the attitude of Washington University marketing Professor Seethu Seetharaman, who opines on the Wash U. website that “Super Bowl advertising has become hugely wasteful in the era of social networks.” Link to Article See also St. Louis Post-Dispatch

News in Higher Education

Los Angeles Times

American students in Egypt get a crash course in politics, unrest and revolution


Hundreds of American students who traveled to Egypt for a term abroad this year are getting a crash course in Middle Eastern politics, unrest and revolution. Many of the estimated 1,000 U.S. students enrolled in programs in Egypt have fled the country after anti-government protests broke out last week. But other American students have chosen to stay. Link to Article

Huffington Post

The Narcissism myth


College students would rather get a self-esteem boost, from a good grade or a compliment, than eat their favorite food or have sex. This is according to a new study, and the conclusion one can extract is apparently clear: Young people today are super into themselves. Link to Article

Student Free Press

Six states considering concealed carry on campus


Proposed concealed-carry legislation has propelled gun law debates into the forefront of campus debate in the aftermath of Jared Loughner’s shooting spree in Tucson. Six

states — Arizona, Florida, Oklahoma, Nebraska, New Mexico and Texas — are considering bills that, if passed, would broaden the ability of professors and students to carry concealed weapons on college campuses. 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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