Deep beneath the tundra near Eight Mile Lake in Alaska, at the “thaw front” where the active layer meets the permafrost, Northern Arizona University postdoctoral researcher Rebecca Hewitt has been observing a surprising rally: mycorrhizal fungi are congregating, in some cases taking up nitrogen as it’s released from the permafrost into the active layer. Using isotope tracers, Hewitt and her team have found these same fungi at the roots of plants whose root systems are too shallow to reach… Read more
Research & Academics
According to the American Heart Association, cardiovascular disease remains the leading cause of death in the U.S.—higher than all forms of cancer and lung disease combined. Hemodynamics, how blood circulates throughout the body, are believed to play a major role in the progression of heart disease.
One of the most powerful tools clinicians use in the treatment of cardiac patients is hemodynamic monitoring, which assesses blood volume and pressure, blood flow and oxygen in the blood, revealing the severity of… Read more
Experts estimate that snowmelt accounts for as much as 75 percent of water supplies in the western United States. As the climate warms, however, it’s not hard to imagine a future when declining snowpack on western mountain ranges means less snowmelt. Scientists and water managers have already seen worrying changes in the timing and amount of runoff from season to season.
These shifts pose challenges for farmers, who have to consider the availability and price of water when deciding which… Read more
Some experts estimate that a single mature oak tree produces between 200,000 and 1 million leaves each year—all of which fall from the tree in the autumn. Although “litter” from decaying leaves is sometimes viewed as a problem in urban and suburban settings, fallen leaves play a critical role in the natural world. Decomposing leaves replenish the soil by releasing carbon, nitrogen, phosphorus and other inorganic compounds into the food web, but scientists don’t yet have a complete understanding… Read more
Northern Arizona University associate professor of practice Rob Kellar was recently selected as a finalist in the Phoenix Business Journal’s Health Care Heroes awards program in the Innovation category. The annual program, now in its 18th year, honors health care workers, including doctors, nurses and volunteers.
As a faculty researcher in NAU’s Center for Bioengineering Innovation, Kellar specializes in regenerative medicine—engineering the replacement or regeneration of human cells, tissues and organs. His research focuses on tissue regeneration, stem cell… Read more
Hurricane Florence is reported by the U.S. National Weather Service as making landfall as a Category 1 storm (U.S. scale). The areas that are projected to be affected the most by 2018 Hurricane Florence—counties that have been asked to evacuate prior to landfall—are less populated than the areas affected by the 2017-year hurricanes Harvey, Irma, Nate and Maria. Some of the urban areas that are being directly impacted are the mid-sized cities of Wilmington, North Carolina; Charleston, South Carolina;… Read more