Content Authored by: Jules Bernstein

Experiments in growing algae without sunlight

Elizabeth Hann, a doctoral student in plant biology at UC Riverside, is using a two-year, $60,000 fellowship from the Link Foundation to test whether she can grow algae for biofuels completely in the dark using solar-generated electricity.

By Jules Bernstein | | Science / Technology

Climate change will decimate Palm Springs, Coachella Valley tourism

A new UC Riverside study finds that climate change will have a devastating effect on the greater Palm Springs area’s dominant industry — tourism. Thousands known as “snowbirds” flock to the region annually from elsewhere in the country to escape freezing winters. However, due to climate change, the number of...

By Jules Bernstein | | Science / Technology

New book explains DNA for curious nonscientists

After 50 years of research, UC Riverside geneticist Alan McHughen knows what DNA can and can't do. Now, he's written a book so that the rest of us can understand too. He couldn’t foresee when he wrote the book that the topic would gain additional importance with the outbreak of...

By Jules Bernstein | | Science / Technology

Water contaminant could have neurotoxic effects on children

Manganese isn’t considered a major water contaminant in America, but a new study is taking a closer look at whether it should be. A naturally occurring metal, manganese can be found in water supplies throughout the world. Over time, excessive ingestion of manganese can produce cognitive disabilities in children and...

By Jules Bernstein | | Science / Technology

New tools in the fight against lethal citrus disease

Scientists are closer to gaining the upper hand on Huanglongbing, a disease that has wiped out citrus orchards across the globe. New models of the bacterium linked to the disease reveal control methods that were previously unavailable.

By Jules Bernstein | | Science / Technology

Surprising number of exoplanets could host life

A new UC Riverside study shows other stars could have as many as seven Earth-like planets in the absence of a gas giant like Jupiter.

By Jules Bernstein | | Science / Technology

Scientists unlock genetic secrets of wine growers’ worst enemy

Following a decade-long effort, scientists have mapped out the genome of an aphid-like pest capable of decimating vineyards. In so doing, they have discovered how it spreads — and potentially how to stop it. The research team’s work on the genome was published this past week in a BMC Biology...

By Jules Bernstein | | Science / Technology

Hot or cold, venomous vipers still quick to strike

Most reptiles move slower when temperatures drop, but venomous rattlesnakes appear to be an exception. The cold affects them, but not as much as scientists expected.

By Jules Bernstein | | Science / Technology

Parasitic worm venom evades human immune system

It’s likely that billions of people are unaware they have been infected with parasitic worms. A UC Riverside scientist has won $1.8 million to try and understand why. The National Institutes of Health granted an Outstanding Investigator Award to Adler Dillman, an assistant professor of parasitology, so he can shed...

By Jules Bernstein | | Science / Technology

Parasite infestations revealed by tiny chicken backpacks

Blood-feeding livestock mites can be detected with wearable sensor technology nicknamed “Fitbits for chickens.” To help farmers detect mite infestations, a team of entomologists, computer scientists, and biologists led by UC Riverside entomologist Amy Murillo has created a new insect detection system. The team’s work is detailed in the journal...

By Jules Bernstein | | Science / Technology

UC Riverside discovers first effective treatment for citrus-destroying disease

UC Riverside scientists have found the first substance capable of controlling Citrus Greening Disease, which has devastated citrus farms in Florida and also threatens California. The new treatment effectively kills the bacterium causing the disease with a naturally occurring molecule found in wild citrus relatives. This molecule, an antimicrobial peptide...

$20M sustainable nanotechnology partnership renewed

The National Science Foundation, or NSF, has renewed funding for a UC Riverside laboratory solving big environmental and agricultural challenges with very small chemical particles called nanomaterials.

Microbiome confers resistance to cholera

Many parts of the world are in the midst of a deadly pandemic of cholera, an extreme form of watery diarrhea. UC Riverside scientists have discovered specific gut bacteria make some people resistant to it — a finding that could save lives.

By Jules Bernstein | | Science / Technology

UCR wins $10 million to develop AI for sustainable agriculture

The University of California, Riverside, has won a $10 million grant to develop artificial intelligence that will increase the environmental and economic stability of agriculture in the Western U.S. This Sustainable Agricultural Systems grant is one of nine given by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Institute of Food and...

Biologists unravel tangled mystery of plant cell growth

When cells don’t divide into proper copies of themselves, living things fail to grow as they should. For the first time, scientists now understand how a protein called TANGLED1 can lead to accurate cell division in plants. Inside cells are structures called microtubules, which act like highways for moving proteins...

By Jules Bernstein | | Science / Technology

Nanomaterial gives robots chameleon skin

A new film made of gold nanoparticles changes color in response to any type of movement. Its unprecedented qualities could allow robots to mimic chameleons and octopi — among other futuristic applications. Unlike other materials that try to emulate nature’s color changers, this one can respond to any type of...

By Jules Bernstein | | Science / Technology

UCR Herbarium founder donates $900K to preserve its future

UC Riverside’s herbarium, established over 60 years ago, is an irreplaceable library of plant specimens. Now, a $900,000 bequest from its founder Frank Vasek and his wife Maxine will ensure the resource remains available to many generations of future plant scientists, and that it receives needed repairs and reorganization. Vasek...

By Jules Bernstein | | University

Professor’s own body becomes physiology lab during pandemic

Just call him Professor Guinea Pig. Adapting to remote learning this quarter, Professor Rich Cardullo is performing all the experiments for his human physiology laboratory course — on himself. Picture a video in which your professor puts electrodes on his thighs and has a teaching assistant hit his knees, so...

By Jules Bernstein | | University

Everything you’ve ever wanted to know about bees

World Bee Day is May 20. To mark the occasion, we gathered some of UC Riverside’s top bee experts to answer questions submitted on our Instagram page. The response created, for lack of a better term, quite a buzz! We got so many questions — hundreds — that we could...

Tiny particle, big payoff

UC Riverside scientists have solved a 20-year-old genetics puzzle that could result in ways to protect wheat, barley, and other crops from a devastating infection. Ayala Rao, professor of plant pathology and microbiology, has been studying Brome Mosaic virus for decades. Unlike some viruses, the genetic material of this virus...