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Campus, Community Programs Join to Prevent Obesity in Families

In an effort to combat the increasing rates of obesity among Latino residents, the University of California, Merced and the Merced County Central California Regional Obesity Prevention Program will join forces.

Funded by a three-year, $90,000 grant from National Institutes of Health’s Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, the campus and nonprofit will look at efforts in other areas that have scientifically proven successful in reducing obesity, particularly in young children.

Professor’s Research to Examine Whether Copper Plays Role in Alzheimer’s Disease

Professor Masashi Kitazawa wants to figure out if any environmental factors increase the risk for developing Alzheimer’s disease – specifically, whether elevated levels of copper in drinking water play a role.

A new $2.6 million, five-year grant from the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences will fund his research, making what was a side project into a full-blown exploration.

UC Cooperative Extension Positions to Connect Research, Community

Two UC Cooperative Extension specialists are being deployed to UC Merced to take advantage of its location at the center of California agriculture and build on ongoing research into agriculturally significant matters related to climate, food security and nutrition.

The two UCCE specialists, from the UC Division of Agricultural and Natural Resources, will help further connect campus research with local farmers and residents.

Innovate to Grow Competition Highlights Student Creativity

MERCED, Calif. — From disposable drones mapping wildfire perimeters to increasing the number of young students interested in science, technology, engineering and math studies, this year’s engineering capstone and Innovate to Grow teams have real, impactful work to show off.

The annual Innovate to Grow competition and expo at UC Merced takes place Friday, May 16, across campus, with a variety of events including demonstrations of each team’s work, plus blue-ribbon panels and cash prizes. The events are free and open to the public.

McCloskey’s Research Earns Grant from California’s Stem Cell Push

UC Merced Professor Kara McCloskey was recently awarded a highly competitive $500,000 grant to continue tackling significant, unresolved issues in human stem cell biology, as part of an effort to enhance stem-cell research in California.

This past month, the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine (CIRM), and its governing board, approved more than $27 million for Basic Biology V Awards, of which McCloskey’s grant is included. The leads for this center include Stanford University and the Salk Institute for Biological Studies.

New Study Connects Smoke-Free Laws, Dentists’ Advice to Quit

Smoke-free laws may help encourage dentists to recommend that their patients kick the smoking habit, according to new research co-authored by UC Merced Professor Mariaelena Gonzalez.

The paper, published in the American Journal of Public Health, suggests the societal change manifested by smoke-free laws can contribute to an atmosphere in which dentists pay more attention to patients’ smoking habits.

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