Researchers at McGill have found that the gap in life expectancy between white and black people in America has narrowed substantially, largely because of a decrease in deaths of young African American males from homicide and AIDS. The study, conducted by Sam Harper, a postdoctoral fellow in McGill's department of epidemiology, biostatistics and occupational health, and John Lynch, Canada research chair in population health, is published in the March 21 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.
The South Pole Telescope, a 22-metre tall, 280-ton monstrosity housed in one of the coldest places on Earth, has successfully collected its first test observations. And now astrophysicists hope it will shed light on the mysteries of the universe. CTV speaks with McGill astrophysicist Matt Dobbs, who is involved in the project.
McGill professor emeritus Charles Taylor, a philosopher who says the world's problems can only be solved by considering both their secular and spiritual roots, was named Wednesday as the recipient of a religion award billed as the world's richest annual prize. Taylor, a professor of law and philosophy at Northwestern University, and emeritus professor of Philosophy at McGill, has won this year's Templeton Prize for Progress Toward Research or Discoveries About Spiritual Realities. The award is worth more than $1.5 million.
McGill took top place among Canada's universities in the Times Higher Education Supplement's survey of the world's best universities, ranking 21st, three spots higher than last year. The University of Toronto was 27th, while the University of British Columbia tumbled 12 spots to finish in a tie for 50th.
Ram Jakhu, associate professor of law at McGill, says that the increasing number of satellites orbiting the planet is creating headaches for lawyers.
Using thermal imaging for the first time to measure arousal rates, a new McGill study shows that women become sexually aroused as quickly as men do. The study, by McGill psychology prof and director of the Sex and Couple Therapy Service of the Royal Victoria Hospital, Irv Binik, and grad student Tuuli Kukkonen, shatters the long-held myth that men get excited faster than women.
Reut Gruber, a child psychologist and sleep researcher at the Douglas Hospital, conducts major studies of children with attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder to see whether improving the quality of their sleep enhances their ability to learn and listen.
For decades, there have been attempts to draw a direct line between genes and/or environmental factors and mental illness with no success. Psychiatrists now realize that there is something else in between. That something may be epigenetic imprinting. The Economist looks at the work of Moshe Szyf and Michael Meaney.
Giant tortoises, dwarf elephants and little people. All examples of species that became very large or very small when they colonized islands. For years, it was assumed that evolution must speed up to produce such variety so rapidly. Now, Virginie Millien of McGill has found that mammals on islands evolve around three times as fast as their continental counterparts.
A few years ago, researchers like McGill's Moshe Szyf were scoffed at for their ideas. Today Szyf, a professor of pharmacology at McGill, and a few others are mini-celebrities in the increasingly accepted field of epigenetics. The study of epigenetics postulates that there is a "second code" of programming on top of our DNA, a code that -- unlike DNA -- can change during our lifetimes.