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Faculty of Science news

Building tailor-made DNA nanotubes step by step

Researchers at McGill University have developed a new, low-cost method to build DNA nanotubes block by block – a breakthrough that could help pave the way for scaffolds made from DNA strands to be used in applications such as optical and electronic devices or smart drug-delivery systems.

Published on : 23 Feb 2015

Can you judge a man by his fingers?

Maybe you should take a good look at your partner’s fingers before putting a ring on one. Men with short index fingers and long ring fingers are on average nicer towards women, and this unexpected phenomenon stems from the hormones these men have been exposed to in their mother’s womb, according to a new study by researchers at McGill University. The findings might help explain why these men tend to have more children.

Published on : 18 Feb 2015

Mathematica software now free for students too

Mathematica, from Wolfram Research, is a powerful computational software used for mathematical modeling and data visualization.  McGill IT Services has been providing Mathematica to faculty and staff, and in computer labs across the University for the past few years.  Now it is also available to students via the McGill Software site (www.mcgill.ca/software).

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Published on : 09 Feb 2015

Mathematica software now Free for Students

Mathematica, from Wolfram Research, is a powerful computational software used for mathematical modeling and data visualization.  McGill IT Services has been providing Mathematica to Faculty & Staff, and in computer labs across the University for the past few years.  Now it is also available to students via the McGill Software site (www.mcgill.ca/software).

Published on : 09 Feb 2015

Pick a card, any card

Magicians have astonished audiences for centuries by subtly, yet powerfully, influencing their decisions. But there has been little systematic study of the psychological factors that make magic tricks work.

Published on : 09 Feb 2015

Invasive Species in the Great Lakes by 2063

The Great Lakes have been invaded by more non-native species than any other freshwater ecosystem in the world. In spite of increasing efforts to stem the tide of invasion threats, the lakes remain vulnerable, according to scientists from McGill University and colleagues in Canada and the United States. 

Published on : 29 Jan 2015

MS Office 365 ProPlus now available for faculty, staff, and students

McGill faculty and staff members now have FREE access to Office 365 ProPlus on personal devices, including computers (PCs and Macs),  tablets (iPad and Windows), and smartphones (iPhone, Android, and Windows). This includes the latest versions of Word, Excel, PowerPoint and other Office apps. For faculty and staff, this service replaces the Office portion of the Microsoft Work at Home program. Students already (and still!) have free access to Office 365 ProPlus.

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Published on : 23 Jan 2015

Current nutrition labeling is hard to digest

Current government-mandated nutrition labeling is ineffective in improving nutrition, but there is a better system available, according to a study by McGill University researchers published in the December issue of the Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences.

Published on : 20 Jan 2015

MS Office 365 ProPlus now available for faculty & staff

McGill faculty and staff members now have FREE access to Office 365 ProPlus, which includes the latest versions of Word, Excel, PowerPoint and other Office apps. The service allows you to install the Office suite on up to 5 personal devices*, including PCs, Macs, and 5 iPad and Windows tablets.

Published on : 19 Jan 2015

Social equity in urban transportation planning

During the 20th century, urban transportation planning in North America was mainly concerned with easing traffic congestion, improving safety and saving time for motorists. These days, most cities’ transportation plans evoke a more complex blend of environmental, economic, and social-equity goals – all aimed at promoting “sustainability.” Yet, many fail to include meaningful measurements of social-equity objectives, such as helping disadvantaged neighborhoods access essential services, according to researchers at McGill University.

Published on : 07 Jan 2015

Better dam planning strategies

When dams are built they have an impact not only on the flow of water in the river, but also on the people who live downstream and on the surrounding ecosystems. By placing data from close to 6,500 existing large dams on a highly precise map of the world’s rivers, an international team led by McGill University researchers has created a new method to estimate the global impacts of dams on river flow and fragmentation.

Published on : 06 Jan 2015

Tracking down the origins of the Ebola outbreak

To address these questions, Dr. Fabian Leendertz of the Robert Koch Institute in Berlin assembled a large international interdisciplinary team consisting of virologists, veterinarians, ecologists, epidemiologists and an anthropologist. One member was Jan Gogarten, a doctoral student in Biology and Vanier graduate scholar at McGill.  We spoke with Gogarten about the resulting study, published this week in the journal EMBO Molecular Medicine, and his role in it.

Published on : 30 Dec 2014

What the “fecal prints” of microbes can tell us about E

The distinctive “fecal prints” of microbes potentially provide a record of how Earth and life have co-evolved over the past 3.5 billion years as the planet’s temperature, oxygen levels, and greenhouse gases have changed. But, despite more than 60 years of study, it has proved difficult, until now, to “read” much of the information contained in this record. Research from McGill University and Israel’s Weizmann Institute of Science, recently published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS), sheds light on the mysterious digestive processes of microbes, opening the way towards a better understanding of how life and the planet have changed over time.

Published on : 23 Dec 2014