SMU Department of Chemistry

Protecting brain’s neurons could halt Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s

Biehl%2CEd%20lab.jpgResearchers at Southern Methodist University and The University of Texas at Dallas have identified a group of chemical compounds that slows the degeneration of neurons, a condition that causes such common diseases of old age as Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s and amyotropic lateral sclerosis.

SMU Chemistry Professor Edward R. Biehl and UTD Biology Professor Santosh R. D’Mello teamed to test 45 chemical compounds. Four were found to be the most potent protectors of brain cells, or neurons. Continue reading

Posted in Health & Medicine, Mind & Brain | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

New durable materials result from silicon polymers

Son2.JPGDavid Son uses some of the Earth’s most common building blocks to create complex new materials with potential wide-ranging applications.

Son conducts research on polymers containing silicon. One of the main elements in the Earth’s crust, silicon is the major ingredient in common sand, and is readily available.

“It’s fairly easy and inexpensive to transform silicon into compounds we can manipulate,” says Son, associate professor in SMU’s Department of Chemistry in Dedman College. “And because silicon is an inorganic element, it gives materials great stability against temperature changes and oxidation.”

Continue reading

Posted in Energy & Matter, Health & Medicine, Technology | Tagged , , | Leave a comment