What's New in Research

What's New in Research

 

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Restructuring FedNor will better serve Northern Ontario: Brock-authored report

June 9, 2015

New research calls for the federal government to restructure its Northern Ontario economic development organization FedNor to better meet the needs of local communities.

“The current mandate, structure, and approach to regional economic development of the Federal Economic Development Initiative for Northern Ontario have a detrimental effect on the organization’s policy engagement in the region,” says Brock University political scientist Charles Conteh, who wrote the report, released June 9 by the Northern Policy Institute.

He calls for FedNor to be more independent from Industry Canada, where it is currently housed, allowing it “to be more locally embedded and responsive to initiatives of the local private sector and community groups.”

FedNor came under fire recently when MP for Thunder Bay-Rainy River John Rafferty accused FedNor of under spending by $8.5 million from 2013-14 and reducing the overall budget yearly since 2008.

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Brock researchers win Ontario government funding competition

June 9, 2015

Two Brock University researchers are among winners of an Ontario government funding competition aimed at helping new researchers build their research teams.

Volcanologist and igneous petrologist Mariek Schmidt and inorganic chemist Theocharis Stamatatos have received funding under the Ministry of Research and Innovation’s Early Researcher Awards program.

Schmidt, associate professor in the Department of Earth Sciences, and her team are heading to Hawaii later this year to make detailed analysis of lava rocks on Mauna Kea Volcano as part of her research project “Unraveling the Alteration History of Mars.”

The researchers will gather data from Mauna Kea and another Hawaiian volcano, Kohala, at a later date and compare what they find with discoveries made by NASA’s Curiosity rover on Mars.

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Duncan MacDonald among Brock faculty, staff to win art awards

June 2, 2015

It was a moment Duncan MacDonald and others at Brock won’t soon forget.

In one of the last celebrations to be held at the Sean O’Sullivan Theatre, MacDonald, Brock University associate professor and chair of Brock’s Visual Arts department won the Established Artist Award at the St. Catharines Arts Awards Saturday night.

“Being awarded the Established Artist Award was a big surprise to me,” MacDonald said. “As an artist who has been exhibiting for about 20 years, it is encouraging to know that my artwork resonates with the local community.”

MacDonald said he plans to use his $400 prize money from the award to buy a piece of art by recent Brock University Visual Arts graduate Ben Mosher.

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Brock science historian on international research team studying John Tyndall

June 1, 2015

If John Tyndall were alive today, he’d “break the Internet.”

The thousands of letters the 19th century physicist wrote on topics ranging from infrared radiation and Anglo-Irish politics to the state of his colleagues’ family lives and the intricacies of 19th century courtship rituals make him the consummate blogger ahead of his time.

“Because of the sheer volume of the letters and journals, we can learn an incredible amount about the social history of the 19th century: the intellectual culture, the changing social structures,” says Elizabeth Neswald, a Brock science and technology historian.

“Reading the journals, reading the letters, you really get a picture of what it was to be a scientist in that period, to become a scientist at that time.”

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Brock psychology professor seeks participants for two sleep studies

May 22, 2015

We’ve all done it: pressed the “send” button too quickly on that nasty e-mail, tweeted something we thought was hilarious but actually offensive, or snapped at our kids for some innocent remark they’ve made.

Chances are we did this on a day when we’ve had less than optimal sleep the night before.

Another scenario: on those rare occasions when we’ve curled up in the middle of the day to take a quick siesta, we seem to be sharper, more focused and can recall things easier once we awaken from our slumber.

Brock University psychology professor and sleep expert Kimberly Cote is conducting two research projects that will shed more light on how the brain functions when we have less - and more - sleep than usual.

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Brock researchers find rosemary extract effective in diabetes treatment

May 21, 2015

Brock researchers have discovered the herb rosemary does more than pair well with mushrooms or roast chicken. They found that extract from the evergreen-like herb increases the transport of glucose into muscle cells, working much like drugs used to treat Type 2 diabetes.

Health Sciences Prof. Evangelia Tsiani worked on the project with her graduate student and the study’s primary author Madina Naimi as well as Chemistry researchers T.C. Stamatatos and D.I. Alexandropoulos, and McMaster University researcher Theodoros Tsakiridis.

Their findings have been published in a paper titled “Increased skeletal muscle glucose uptake by rosemary extract through AMPK activation.” The results complement Tsiani’s previous work studying the positive effects of resveratrol, an antioxidant common in red wine, and naringenin, a citrus flavonoid.

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