The work of SMU biomechanics researcher Peter G. Weyand is featured in the August 2016 issue of the science news magazine Scientific American. Science writer and associate editor Dina Fine Maron reports on Weyand's leading-edge research about the key to human speed for sprinters in the article "The Secret to Human Speed" and the video report "How Elite Sprinters Run So Fast."
Counting calories burned is popular, but leading standardized equations used to predict or estimate calories burned while walking assume that one size fits all. They’ve been in place for close to half a century and were based on data from a limited number of people. A new SMU study found that under firm, level ground conditions, the leading standards are relatively inaccurate and have significant bias — predicting too few calories burned in 97 percent of cases researchers examined.
SMU scientists and their research have a global reach that is frequently noted, beyond peer publications and media mentions. It was a good year for SMU faculty and student research efforts. Here's a small sampling of public and published acknowledgements during 2015, ranging from research modeling that made the cover of a scientific journal to research findings presented as evidence at government hearings.
Two SMU psychology professors working with University of Maryland engineers have been awarded a National Institutes of Health grant that will bring nearly $2 million to their joint project to create a wearable device for pediatric asthma patients that helps them avoid asthma triggers. The asthma device will monitor air quality, carbon dioxide levels in the blood, physical activity and other stimuli to identify triggers and alert a patient when conditions are ripe for an attack.
SMU physiologist and biomechanics researcher Peter G. Weyand contributed a piece on cheating in sports to the U.S. online news magazine and blog the Huffington Post. The piece addresses how modern cheating controversies in sports indicate the need for a new approach to judge fairness that encompasses a broader range of possibilities.
Drugs important in the battle against cancer responded the way they do in real life and behaved according to predictions when tested in a computer-generated model of one of the cell’s key molecular pumps — the protein P-glycoprotein, or P-gp. Biologists at SMU developed the computer generated model to overcome the problem of relying on only static images for P-gp's structure, said biologist John G. Wise, lead researcher.
Researchers at Southern Methodist University, Dallas, have discovered three new drug-like compounds that could ultimately offer better odds of survival to prostate cancer patients. The drug-like compounds can be modified and developed into medicines that target a protein in the human body that is responsible for chemotherapy resistance in cancers, said biochemist Pia D. Vogel.
The U.S. Department of Defense recently awarded the STEMPREP Project at SMU a $3.78 million grant to support its goal of increasing the number of minorities in STEM fields. To create more diversity in STEM fields, STEMPREP, based at the Annette Caldwell Simmons School of Education and Human Development, recruits bright, science-minded middle school students.