Theologian Gary Anderson elected to American Academy of Jewish Research

Author: Joanna Basile

Gary Anderson

Gary Anderson, Hesburgh Professor of Catholic Theology at the University of Notre Dame, has been named a fellow of the American Academy of Jewish Research (AAJR).

The AAJR is the oldest organization of Judaic scholars in North America, and fellows are nominated and elected by their peers. The group has approximately 100 members in the United States — and Anderson is one of a select few who are not Jewish.

“For me,” Anderson says, “to be treated in such a way by my Jewish colleagues while at a Catholic institution is the highest of honors given the importance I have placed on Jewish studies in my own life and career." Read More

$5 million gift establishes Gallagher family professorships in adult stem cell research

Author: Marissa Gebhard

Stem cell research

Alumnus Michael Gallagher and his wife, Elizabeth, have made a $5 million gift to establish the Elizabeth and Michael Gallagher Family Professorships in Adult Stem Cell Research at the University of Notre Dame.

Their gift, which will fund three new endowed professorships in adult and all forms of non-embryonic stem cell research, will strengthen Notre Dame’s leadership in the field of stem cell research and enhance the University’s effective dialogue between the biomedical research community and the Catholic Church on matters related to the use and application of stem cells and regenerative medicine. Read More

Nanoparticles engineered at Notre Dame promise to improve blood cancer treatment

Author: Arnie Phifer

A time-lapse image showing multiple myeloma cells internalizing the engineered nanoparticles

Researchers from the University of Notre Dame have engineered nanoparticles that show great promise for the treatment of multiple myeloma (MM), an incurable cancer of the plasma cells in bone marrow.

One of the difficulties doctors face in treating MM comes from the fact that cancer cells of this type start to develop resistance to the leading chemotherapeutic treatment, doxorubicin, when they adhere to tissue in bone marrow.

“The nanoparticles we have designed accomplish many things at once,” says Başar Bilgiçer, assistant professor of chemical and biomolecular engineering and chemistry and biochemistry, and an investigator in Notre Dame’s Advanced Diagnostics and Therapeutics (AD&T) initiative. Read More

Health IT expert: Electronic medical records finally catching on with policymakers -- and Olympians

Author: Shannon Chapla

Corey Angst

The U.S. Olympic Committee is converting to electronic medical records (EMRs) this month for hundreds of athletes who will be competing in London, as well as thousands of other athletes who have been seen by Olympic Committee doctors in recent years.

EMRs also are catching on nationwide as the federal government encourages health care providers with financial incentives, and Corey Angst, assistant professor of management in the University of Notre Dame’s Mendoza College of Business and an expert on health information technology, says “Policymakers seemed to have listened and are not just insisting on EMR adoption, but more importantly, they are mandating that the systems be used in a meaningful way. There are specific things that must be measured and reported for hospitals and doctors to receive the incentives.” Read More

Research shows food-trade network vulnerable to fast spread of contaminants

Author: Marissa Gebhard and Rachel Fellman

Food contamination network

Notre Dame network physicists Mária Ercsey-Ravasz and Zoltán Toroczkai of the Interdisciplinary Center for Network Science and Applications, in collaboration with food science experts, have recently published a rigorous analysis of the international food-trade network that shows the network’s vulnerability to the fast spread of contaminants as well as the correlation between known food poisoning outbreaks and the centrality of countries on the network.

Together with food science experts József Baranyi, from the Institute of Food Research in the U.K., and Zoltán Lakner, of Corvinus University in Budapest, Ercsey-Ravasz and Toroczkai recently published their results in the journal PLoS ONE. Read More

New research leads to sensors that detect contaminants in water

Author: Marissa Gebhard

Electron hopping (Kamat laboratory)

Many organic contaminants in the air and in drinking water need to be detected at very low-level concentrations. Research published by the laboratory of Prashant V. Kamat, the John A. Zahm Professor of Science at the University of Notre Dame, could be beneficial in detecting those contaminants.

The Kamat laboratory uses Surface-Enhanced Raman Spectroscopy to make use of silver nanoparticles to increase the sensitivity limit of chemical detection. Researchers in this study have prepared a semiconductor-graphene-metal film that has distinct advantages: The absorption of organic molecules on the film’s graphene surface increases the local contaminant concentration adjacent to silver nanoparticles. Read More

Dovichi receives Royal Society of Chemistry Prize for Analytical Science

Author: Rachel Fellman and Marissa Gebhard

Norman Dovichi

The Royal Society of Chemistry has announced that Norman Dovichi, the Grace-Rupley Professor of Chemistry at the University of Notre Dame, will be awarded the 2012 Robert Boyle Prize for Analytical Science.

The biennial prize is given to the candidate whose work is of the broadest relevance to the chemical science community as a whole and whose career is defined by exceptional work, excellence and dedication. It includes a £5,000 cash award, a medal and a lecture tour of the U.K. The prize will be formally presented Nov. 9 in Birmingham, England. Read More