Can Being Happy Really Be a Matter of Being Healthy?

Psychology Today Originally Posted: December 7, 2019 When you think about the features of your life that make you happy, you’re likely to count off such factors as how well your relationships are going, whether you have enough money to pay your bills, how you feel about your work, and whether you’re having a good day so far. How often, in this listing of contributors to your happiness, do you include how healthy you’re feeling? From the opposite perspective, if you’ve got a headache, a cold, or a sore toe, you’re probably not feeling all that happy. However, as soon as you’re better, you forget how much your body’s status affected that of your mind’s. What if your happiness was affected more by your overall [...]

By | 2019-12-09T07:52:15-08:00 December 9th, 2019|Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences, Dedman College Research, Faculty News, Psychology|Comments Off on Can Being Happy Really Be a Matter of Being Healthy?

SMU study finds possible new way to treat HTLV-1 virus

Dallas Voice Originally Posted: December 6, 2019 A study led by SMU suggests that oleandrin — a drug derived from the Nerium oleander plant — could prevent the HTLV-1 virus from spreading by targeting a stage of the reproduction process that is not currently targeted by existing drugs. That is significant because there is currently no cure or treatment for the virus, which is related to HIV. About 38 million people have HIV worldwide while about 20 million people have the HTLV-1 virus. “Our research findings suggest that oleandrin could possibly limit the transmission and spread of HTLV-1 by targeting a unique stage in the retroviral life cycle,” said Robert Harrod, associate professor and director of Graduate Studies in SMU’s Department of Biological Sciences. Harrod is a [...]

By | 2019-12-09T07:49:52-08:00 December 9th, 2019|Biology, Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences, Dedman College Research, Faculty News|Comments Off on SMU study finds possible new way to treat HTLV-1 virus

Texas has been ground zero for capital punishment for over 40 years

Dallas Morning News Originally Posted: December 1, 2019 Dec. 1, Rick Halperin, director of the SMU Human Rights Program, co-authored by Roger C. Barnes for a piece about Texas being “ground zero” in the U.S. for carrying out capital punishment. Thus far in 2019, there have been 20 executions carried out in the United States. Eight of them have been in Texas. There are four more executions scheduled in the country by year’s end, and one of them is to be carried out in Texas. Since the death penalty in the U.S. was reinstated in 1976, there have been a total of 1,510 executions. A staggering 566 of them have been in Texas. In other words, Texas has been ground zero for capital punishment for over [...]

By | 2019-12-02T08:03:45-08:00 December 2nd, 2019|Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences, Dedman College Research, Embrey Human Rights Events, Faculty News, History|Comments Off on Texas has been ground zero for capital punishment for over 40 years

Wastewater leak in West Texas revealed

EurekaAlert Originally Posted: November 25, 2019 DALLAS (SMU) - Geophysicists at SMU say that evidence of leak occurring in a West Texas wastewater disposal well between 2007 and 2011 should raise concerns about the current potential for contaminated groundwater and damage to surrounding infrastructure. SMU geophysicist Zhong Lu and the rest of his team believe the leak happened at a wastewater disposal well in the Ken Regan field in northern Reeves County, which could have leaked toxic chemicals into the Rustler Aquifer. The same team of geophysicists at SMU has revealed that sinkholes are expanding and forming in West Texas at a startling rate. Wastewater is a byproduct of oil and gas production. Using a process called horizontal drilling, or "fracking," companies pump vast quantities [...]

By | 2019-11-26T13:48:52-08:00 November 26th, 2019|Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences, Dedman College Research, Earth Sciences, Faculty News|Comments Off on Wastewater leak in West Texas revealed

SMU Saves North Texas’ Archaeological History

D Magazine Originally Posted: Nov. 12, 2019 Remember Sunday Eiselt from our 2017 profile of her? She’s a former Marine, archaeologist, professor, and director of SMU’s Archaeological Research Collections (ARC). She’s also our best chance of saving some of North Texas’ oldest, most important history. Last week I met up with her to tour the ARC facilities, located in Heroy Hall. It’s been a little over two years since our initial interview, and in that amount of time she’s managed an amazing transformation of the three rooms that comprise ARC. What follows is an update, including before-and-after photos. But prior to getting there, give the photo above a look. That’s Eiselt in one of the rooms surrounded by musty brown boxes, each packed to capacity [...]

By | 2019-11-13T07:43:50-08:00 November 13th, 2019|Anthropology, Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences, Dedman College Research, Faculty News|Comments Off on SMU Saves North Texas’ Archaeological History

We were lucky to survive the Berlin Wall’s fall

Dallas Morning News Originally Posted: Nov. 9, 2019 Thirty years ago this week the impossible happened: the Berlin Wall fell. More accurately it was crushed by Berliners both East and West who’d had enough of the scar across their cityscape. Like crowds before them, in Leipzig and Dresden in East Germany, in Budapest and Warsaw too, demonstrators demanding change stared down soldiers and police, and won. We were lucky to survive. Crowds can be dangerous. Call that same group a mob and one immediately understands why. They spasm often without coordination or regard for their organizer’s peaceful intent, easily undone by a single protester who breaks rank to toss a brick, or by a trembling young recruit gripped by fear and too tightly gripping his [...]

By | 2019-11-11T09:31:03-08:00 November 11th, 2019|Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences, Dedman College Research, Faculty News, History|Comments Off on We were lucky to survive the Berlin Wall’s fall

Is it possible to change your personality? Yes, if you’re willing to do the work involved

Fox 4 Originally Posted: Nov. 5, 2019 DALLAS (SMU) – Want to be more outgoing?  Or less uptight? In an interview with Fox4ward’s Dan Godwin, SMU psychology professor Nathan Hudson said that it is possible for people to change aspects of their personality.  But it will require some work on your part. You can view the video on Hudson’s website. Forbes and Psychology Today also did a piece on the research. Watch the Video  

By | 2019-11-05T09:22:31-08:00 November 5th, 2019|Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences, Dedman College Research, Faculty News, Psychology|Comments Off on Is it possible to change your personality? Yes, if you’re willing to do the work involved

Historical data confirms recent increase in West Texas earthquakes

SMU Research Originally Posted: Nov. 4, 2019 A new analysis of historical seismic data conducted by The University of Texas at Austin, SMU and other academies has found that earthquake activity in West Texas around Pecos has increased dramatically since 2009. The study, published Nov. 4, 2019, in the Journal of Geophysical Research: Solid Earth, is important because it leverages old, unmined data to track seismic activity over nearly the past two decades – much further back than other studies— to show that activity has increased during the past decade in an area of the Permian Basin that is being heavily developed for oil and gas. Although researchers have generally thought that to be true, the statewide TexNet earthquake monitoring system has been gathering data [...]

By | 2019-11-05T09:21:00-08:00 November 4th, 2019|Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences, Dedman College Research, Earth Sciences, Faculty News|Comments Off on Historical data confirms recent increase in West Texas earthquakes

Why do birds migrate at night?

Mother Nature Network Originally Posted: September 30, 2019 While plenty of birds — such as swallows, hawks and hummingbirds — migrate during the day, the majority of land birds travel at night. Although it would seem more difficult to fly when it's dark, there are good reason for the nighttime maneuvers. "Migration at night has at least three advantages," writes Herb Wilson, a professor of biology at Colby College, in Maine Birds. "Birds do not have to worry about falcon or hawk attacks. Second, the air in the atmosphere is usually less turbulent than during the day. Lastly, the air is cooler at night. A migrating bird produces a huge amount of excess heat that needs to be released. Most of the heat is lost from [...]

By | 2019-10-21T10:11:54-08:00 October 23rd, 2019|Chemistry, Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences, Dedman College Research, Faculty News|Comments Off on Why do birds migrate at night?

How do we get so many different types of neurons in our brain?

SMU Research Originally Posted: September 5, 2019 New SMU study may provide insight on how our brains are able to produce so many different types of neurons, which control everything we do DALLAS (SMU) – SMU (Southern Methodist University) researchers have discovered another layer of complexity in gene expression, which could help explain how we’re able to have so many billions of neurons in our brain. Neurons are cells inside the brain and nervous system that are responsible for everything we do, think or feel. They use electrical impulses and chemical signals to send information between different areas of the brain, and between the brain and the rest of the nervous system, to tell our body what to do. Humans have approximately 86 billion neurons [...]

By | 2019-09-09T09:30:05-08:00 September 9th, 2019|Biology, Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences|Comments Off on How do we get so many different types of neurons in our brain?
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