What makes SARS-CoV-2 so infectious? The answer is in its proteins. Mary Jo Ondrechen and Penny Beuning, professors of chemistry and chemical biology, are using machine learning to investigate these proteins and begin to understand how to slow the spread of the virus.
Herd immunity is the idea that a disease can’t spread through a population once a large enough percentage is immune, either because they’ve recovered from an infection or received a vaccine. But that won’t work with SARS-CoV-2, the coronavirus that causes COVID-19, said Samuel Scarpino, an assistant professor who runs the Emergent Epidemics lab at Northeastern
David DeSteno, a Professor of Psychology does a Q&A with News@Northeastern about his research, the contagiousness of fear and offered some tips for breaking out of the constant cycle of fear and anxiety.
At the Center for Drug Discovery (CDD), Director and Professor Alexandros Makriyannis helped lead a multidisciplinary research team to a critical discovery that helps explain the structures of both major cannabinoid receptors. The structures enable scientists to account for the effect of cannabinoid molecules like THC on the body and will also be used to develop novel therapeutic medications.
Researchers at Northeastern mapped the way proteins within human cells behave after the cells are hijacked by the virus to identify drugs that might be able to fight it. The team is now working with other experimental researchers to begin testing those drugs.
After days of closures and requests—or orders—to stay home, many people caught in the heart of the COVID-19 pandemic are wondering if these efforts will be enough. Network scientist Alessandro Vespignani says the answer depends on the ways that local, regional, and federal governments use the time.
Faster electronics, better communication devices, more efficient ways to store data are just some of the outcomes that the researchers can think of - if magnetite’s puzzle of hidden powers could be figured out. Eventually, it lead to new ways to manipulate materials and improving electronics by harnessing the behavior of their electrons.
“Imagination is the limit,” says Swastik Kar, an associate professor of physics. “It could change the way we can detect and communicate signals. It could change the way we can sense things and the storage of information, and possibilities that we may not have even thought of yet.”
Some parts of the moon never see the light, but they are full of resources that NASA could mine to settle on the lunar surface and venture beyond. The agency selected a team of Northeastern students to develop robotic systems to help survey the darkest areas of the moon.