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Purple and green spikes radiate outward in a microscopic image of a cell


Single gene causes stinging cell to lose its sting

“This one gene controls a switch between two alternative cell fates," said Professor Leslie Babonis.
Fruit fly against an orange surface


Mating causes ‘jet lag’ in female fruit flies, changing behavior

A seminal fluid protein transferred from male to female fruit flies during mating changes the expression of genes related to the fly’s circadian clock, Cornell research has found.
College campus overlooking a lake under a cloudy sky


Seed grants foster collaboration across Cornell campuses

Researchers from the College of Arts and Sciences are involved in some of 14 new Multi-Investigator Seed Grants, designed to foster multidisciplinary collaborations.
Luminescent tree-like structure with purple branches and bright green canopy: The lateral habenula in the mouse brain


Study finds tiny brain area controls work for rewards

The discovery has implications for psychiatric disorders, particularly depression and anxiety.
Geometrical ceiling design shining with gold


Four elected to National Academy of Sciences

Peter Lepage, the Tisch Family Distinguished University Professor in the Department of Physics, is among four Cornell faculty to be honored this year.
Spider, seen close-up, against dark background


Orb-weaver spider uses web to capture sounds

A study of orb weaver spiders finds their massive webs act as auditory arrays that capture sounds, possibly giving spiders advanced warning of incoming prey or predators.
Clear tube with red and green lights inside


After mating, fruit fly sperm are no longer fully male

Long considered exclusively male, a new study revealed that by four days after a sperm enters a female fruit fly, close to 20% of its proteins are female-derived.
Light blue and pink networks glow on a dark blue background


Temperature, reproduction link holds promise for insect control

Scientists have uncovered a set of neurons in fruit flies that could provide a target for controlling mosquitos.
Stone building entrance, snow falling


Four assistant professors win 2022 Sloan fellowships

Assistant professors Pamela Chang, Antonio Fernandez-Ruiz, Daniel Halpern-Leistner and Peter McMahon have won 2022 Sloan Research Fellowships from the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation.
Antibiotic resistant bacteria in film.


Academic Integration efforts lead to $33M in grants

Bringing researchers together – not only across disciplines but across the 200-plus miles separating Ithaca from New York City – is the aim of academic integration, which promotes, builds and enhances collaborative research across Cornell’s campuses.
Image of hundreds of microscopic proteins shaped like cylinders


Advanced microscopy shines light on new CRISPR-Cas system

The CRISPR-Cas system holds promise for developing an improved gene editing tool.
Two mice perched on flowers and facing each other


Mice licking could reveal mysteries of the human brain

Cornell researchers have developed a technique for revealing how the motor cortex in the brain works.
microscopic ovals, black and white image
Mogana Das Murtey and Patchamuthu Ramasamy Saccharomyces cerevisiae yeast, magnified


Yeast epigenome map reveals details of gene regulation

The study is a major step toward improving understanding of development, evolution and environmental responses in higher organisms.
person in lab, using pipette


CRISPR improves method for studying gene functions

A new paper describes a technique that helps biologists understand the roles that individual genes play.
Brain scan images held by a doctor


Computer model reveals how cortical areas develop and evolve

Little is known about how higher cortical areas in the brain develop after the primary areas are in place. A new study by Cornell and Yale researchers, including professor emerita of psychology Barbara Finlay, uses computer modeling to show that the development and evolution of secondary visual cortical areas can be explained by the same process.
Fruit fly on sensor


Sex peptide causes female fruit fly’s gut to grow

Scientists have known that females of many species eat more to meet the demands of reproduction, and that females undergo widespread physiological and behavioral changes after mating. The mechanisms of these changes, however, are not well understood.

skinny orange frog with huge eyes


Lost frogs rediscovered with environmental DNA

Scientists have detected signs of a frog listed extinct and not seen since 1968, using an innovative technique to locate declining and missing species in two regions of Brazil.

Small brown frog


Exclusive group mating found for first time in Brazilian frogs

The lack of previous examples of group fidelity in frogs may be simply because the behavior is hard to observe.
Antonie Blackler


Antonie Blackler, pioneering biologist, dies at 88

Antonie Blackler, professor emeritus of zoology and an expert on developmental biology, died June 3 in Ithaca. He was 88.

He was known for groundbreaking fundamental work on the origin of sex cells in vertebrates. His experiments with African claw-toed frogs yielded important insights into the development and reproduction of amphibian embryos, with implications for other animals and humans.



New imaging technique sheds light on adult zebrafish brain

The Cornell Neurotech team's research could have implications for the study of human brain disorders, including autism.
Two students hold up projects in screen shots


Lab instructors adapt to remote teaching

Teaching labs remotely “gave us this opportunity to really pause and think about what are our goals for the students.”
A researcher fills tubes in a lab


Research interrupted: Lab groups find their way together

Faculty are helping students come up with solutions – ways they can be productive remotely, read papers and write.
Fruit flies


Improved CRISPR gene drive solves problems of old tech

Gene drives use genetic engineering to create a desired mutation in a few individuals that then spreads via mating throughout a population in fewer than 10 generations.

Panelist talk about coronavirus


Panel discusses global uncertainties surrounding coronavirus

With the recent emergence of the coronavirus from China’s Hubei province, another “virus” has the potential to spread, a Cornell faculty member said Tuesday at a wide-ranging panel discussion on the outbreak.

Antibiotic resistant bacteria in film.


T-box structure in bacteria may be target for new antibiotics

New discovery offers hope as the threat of antibiotic-resistant disease germs grows.
cancer cells


Symposium bridges cancer research across Cornell

The second annual Intercampus Cancer Symposium, Oct. 11 at the Cornell College of Veterinary Medicine, will highlight the wide range of cancer research taking place at Cornell’s Ithaca campus and at Weill Cornell Medicine in New York City.

Adnan Shami Shah (left) and Jeremy Baskin in the lab


Baskin wins young investigator award for lipid research

When chemical biologist Jeremy Baskin played piano as a child, his parents noticed something unusual: He loved to improvise.

Tom Seeley and bees


Book reveals wild honeybees’ biology, with insights for beekeepers

While human relations with honeybees date back about 4,500 years, little has been known about how bees live in the wild.

ROTC graduates


‘Stick to your values,’ general tells ROTC cadets

Tyler Barr learned about leadership under pressure while attending a summer program at officer candidate school as a midshipman in the Marine Corps ROTC program at Cornell.

He called it “by far the most difficult six weeks of our lives,” as he recounted sleeping and eating very little while being pushed to his physical limits.


CRISPR-Cas3 innovation holds promise for disease cures, advancing science

A Cornell researcher and colleagues have used a new CRISPR method for the first time in human cells – a major advance in the field.
A tree frog in the Boana fasciata species group from the western Amazon of Brazil


Study: Fungal disease decimates amphibians worldwide

A fungal disease that afflicts amphibians has led to the greatest loss of biodiversity ever recorded due to a disease.
image of a polytope shape


Six assistant professors win NSF early-career awards

Two operations research and information engineers, two electrical engineers and two mathematicians from Cornell have received National Science Foundation (NSF) Faculty Early Career Development Program awards. 

Over the next five years, each researcher will receive up to $500,000 “to build a firm scientific footing for solving challenges and scaling new heights for the nation, as well as serve as academic role models in research and education,” according to the NSF website.

Aedes aegypti mosquito


Study: Mosquitoes can hear up to 10 meters away

Mosquitoes can hear at distances that usually require eardrums, yet all they're listening with are feathery antennae with fine hairs.


Study reveals why tropical mountains are so biodiverse

Tropical mountain species are especially vulnerable to rapid climate change, Cornell researchers find.
A silver fox bred for tameness at the the Institute for Cytology and Genetics in Novosibirsk, Russia.


Silver fox study reveals genetic clues to social behavior

Geneticists identify genes that were altered in tame animals in two areas of the brain involved with learning and memory.
Image from Cornell University College of Arts and Sciences


Awards promote life sciences research and industry partnerships in NY

A project to develop topical therapies for skin diseases associated with DNA damage and another to investigate bone-binding polymers to relieve bone-on-bone pain for those with severe osteoarthritis are two of nine projects awarded 2018-19 Center for Advanced Technology (CAT) grants.

CAT is housed in Cornell’s Institute of Biotechnology.

Fetal T cells


Fetal T cells are first responders to infection in adults

Cornell researchers have discovered there is a division of labor among immune cells that fight invading pathogens in the body.

The study, published June 14 in the journal Cell, finds for the first time that fetal immune cells are present in adults and have specialized roles during infection. In fact, the first immune cells made in early life are fast-acting first responders to microbes in adulthood.



Host-microbe institute poised to expand

As the Cornell Institute of Host-Microbe Interactions and Disease(CIHMID) wraps up its first year, the launch of its Undergraduate Research Experience (URE) proved to be a highlight, say institute leaders.


Fish study IDs genes that regulate social behaviors

Genes in an area of the brain that is relatively similar in fish, humans and all vertebrates appear to regulate how organisms coordinate and shift their behaviors, according to a new Cornell study.

faculty and student doing research


Coalition to provide data for improving life science career choices

President Martha E. Pollack has committed the university to a new multi-institution initiative to make public data pertaining to career outcomes for life sciences doctoral students and postdoctoral researchers.



Study: Bigger honeybee colonies have quieter combs

When honeybee colonies get larger, common sense suggests it would be noisier with more bees buzzing around.

But a study recently published in Behavioral Ecology and Sociobiologyreports that bigger honeybee colonies actually have quieter combs than smaller ones.

Maren Vitousek


Links between social connectedness, stress and health to be studied

Maren Vitousek, assistant professor of ecology and evolutionary biology, has received a two-year, $500,000 Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) Young Faculty Award to study links between stress, social connectedness, health and future performance. The DARPA Young Faculty Award program provides funding, mentoring and industry and Department of Defense contacts to awardees early in their careers.
Thomas Seeley


Five faculty members elected as 2017 AAAS fellows

Thomas Seeley's work focuses on the complex signaling systems used by honeybees to integrate colony life.
Baker hall at sunset


Awards partner life science researchers with industries

Reducing antibiotic resistance in animals and developing a lubricating formula in joints for people suffering from arthritis are two of seven projects that received Center for Advanced Technology (CAT) annual grants.

Spotfin skeleton


3-D scanning project of 20,000 animals makes details available worldwide

What began as a Twitter joke between two researchers has turned into a four-year, $2.5 million National Science Foundation grant to take 3-D digital scans of 20,000 museum vertebrate specimens and make them available to everyone online.

Cornell’s Museum of Vertebrates, with 1.3 million fish specimens, 27,000 reptiles and amphibians (called herps), and 57,000 bird and 23,000 mammal specimens, is one of 16 institutions involved and promises to feature prominently in the project.

Speakers at symposium


Symposium addresses role of truth in universities, society

“How do we reconcile stable truth with multiple understandings of truth?” Bruce Lewenstein, professor of science communication, posed that question during an academic symposium, “Universities and the Search for Truth,” held Aug. 24 in Bailey Hall. The event was part of the celebration of Martha E. Pollack’s inauguration as Cornell’s 14th president.

David Wilson


Renowned biochemist David B. Wilson dies at 77

David B. Wilson, professor of molecular biology and genetics and a world leader in the field of enzymology, died April 29. He was 77.

Bird in tall grass


In brain evolution, size matters -- most of the time

The findings uncover a principle that may also help explain human evolution.
Celina Scott-Buechler


Four Cornell students win 2017 Truman, Udall scholarships

Celina Scott-Buechler is studying how human-made forces drive change in marine coral reef systems.


Grant explores using seminal fluid proteins to control mosquitos

The spread of mosquito-borne viruses, including dengue, chikungunya and Zika, has created a public health crisis that poses risks to nearly 4 billion people living in 120 countries.



New host-microbe institute connects campus researchers

Research areas cover beneficial and pathogenic interactions between hosts (plants and animals) and microbes (bacteria, viruses and fungi).

Charles Aquadro


$1.3M NIH grant funds brain development, cancer research

Researchers will seek to uncover fundamental processes in brain development and their links to brain cancers with a new grant.



Right or left? Study shows how zebrafish answer key question

Very little is known about the wiring of nerve cells in the brain that allow a fish, or any animal, to make fundamental choices to move to the left or to the right. A study of zebrafish larvae published Aug. 9 in the journal eLife for the first time reveals a circuit that determines the direction of a lightning-quick turn to escape a predator.

bee hive


Male frogs have sex on land to keep competitors away

When it comes to the birds and the bees, frogs are remarkably diverse: They do it in water, on land and on leaves.

Researchers have assumed that natural selection drove frogs to take the evolutionary step to reproduce on land as a way for parents to avoid aquatic predators who feed on the eggs and tadpoles.



Infectious disease experts join forces, host global meeting

In recent years, Cornell has amassed an impressive stable of experts in an emerging field for modern times: The ecology and evolution of infectious disease.

Address sign at the American Academy of Arts and Sciences


Four elected to American Academy of Arts and Sciences

Four Cornell faculty members. including two from the College of Arts & Sciences, are among 213 national and international scholars, artists, philanthropists and business leaders elected new fellows of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.



Study: Some frogs are adapting to deadly pathogen

Some populations of frogs are rapidly adapting to a fungal pathogen calledBatrachochrytrium dendrobatridis (Bd) that has decimated many populations for close to half a century and causes the disease chytridiomycosis, according to a new study.

Honeybee on flower


Wild honeybees offer clues on preventing colony collapse

Over the past decades, millions of managed colonies of honeybees have died from varroa mites that transmit deadly viruses, yet wild colonies survive.

Cornell researchers describe – in the March 11 issue of the journal PLoS One –experiments that help reveal how wild colonies endure mites and pathogens.



Study explores new tool for genome editing

A Cornell discovery could lead to more specific and accurate gene editing.

Joe Fetcho


Zebrafish brains open doors to all brains

Neurobiologist Joe Fetcho's research helps us understand how brain circuits produce behaviors.

Jesse Goldberg


Professor Jesse Goldberg wins NIH 'new innovator' award

Three young Cornell researchers have won National Institutes of Health (NIH) Director’s New Innovator Awards. Part of the NIH’s High-Risk, High-Reward Research Program, the awards provide up to $1.5 million over five years for innovative, high-impact projects.


New gene drive technology evokes hopes and fears

The idea of introducing a novel gene into a few individuals that then spreads through an entire population sounds like a premise for science fiction. And yet fiction can be prophetic.
Cornell researchers have used mathematical models to illuminate the promises – and potential problems – of a new genome editing mechanism, called a gene drive.


William Provine, history of science scholar, dies at 73

William Provine, the Andrew H. and James L. Tisch Distinguished University Professor Emeritus at Cornell, died Sept. 1 due to complications from a brain tumor at his home in Horseheads, New York. He was 73.

Provine, a professor of the history of biology in the departments of History and Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, was born Feb. 19, 1942, in Nashville, Tennessee.


3-D scans of mating fruit flies uncover female biology

Cornell researchers have used cutting-edge X-ray technology to noninvasively image fruit flies during and after mating.


To hunt and eat, bats listen for signals in prey mating calls

Researchers find that bats listen in on katydid mating calls to locate their next meal.