Featured Research Stories

Recent articles from the science writers of Penn Today

The immune system does battle in the intestines to keep bacteria in check

New research from Penn’s School of Veterinary Medicine demonstrates that Yersinia pseudotuberculosis, a relative of the bacterial pathogen that causes plague, triggers the body’s immune system to form lesions in the intestines called granulomas.

–Published 2023-03-13

Does more money correlate with greater happiness?

Reconciling previously contradictory results, researchers from Penn and Princeton find a steady association between larger incomes and greater happiness for most people but a rise and plateau for an unhappy minority.

–Published 2023-03-06

Engineered magic: Wooden seed carriers mimic the behavior of self-burying seed

Researchers from Penn Engineering have developed a seed carrier, fashioned from wood veneer, that could enable aerial seeding of difficult-to-access areas, and could be used for a variety of seeds or fertilizers.

–Published 2023-03-02

Genomic study of indigenous Africans paints complex picture of human origins and local adaptation

An international team of researchers led by Penn geneticists sequenced the genomes of 180 indigenous Africans. The results shed light on the origin of modern humans, African population history, and local adaptation.

–Published 2023-03-02

Targeted prenatal therapy addresses long-standing gap in health equity

Penn engineers have developed a successful delivery system of mRNA to placental cells to treat preeclampsia at its root.

–Published 2023-02-23

Advancing research and education to push forward oral health excellence

Since joining the School of Dental Medicine faculty in 2019, Sinem Esra Sahingur has launched two new master’s programs, expanded student research, and continued to pursue her own research program on immune regulation.

–Published 2023-02-17

New insights into the mechanisms of tumor growth

A team of researchers led by the School of Arts & Science’s Wei Guo characterize the molecular pathways that play a major role in tumorigenesis, findings that could lead to better diagnostic tools for cancer and new targeted therapies.

–Published 2023-02-16

Three from Penn named 2023 Sloan Research Fellows

Edgar Dobriban, Robyn E. Sanderson, and Ben Scholl are honored as early-career researchers and scholars for their accomplishments, creativity, and potential to become leaders in their fields.

–Published 2023-02-15

From glacier ice, a wealth of scientific data

Biogeochemist Jon Hawkings of the School of Arts & Sciences and his lab study glaciers to understand the cycling of elements through Earth’s waters, soils, and air in its coldest regions, with implications for climate change, ecosystem health, and more.

–Published 2023-02-13

The future of health research in Malawi

A workshop convened by Penn, University College Dublin, and the Young Researchers Forum in Malawi brought together stakeholders to discuss the African nation’s use of technology in health care and the double burden of non-communicable and infectious diseases.

–Published 2023-02-10

Understanding India’s urban future

A two-year project supported by Penn Global and the Center for the Advanced Study of India takes a deep dive into the political workings of India’s rapidly urbanizing landscape.

–Published 2023-02-10

Topping off Penn’s new energy science building

A project nearly four years in the making sees new heights as the Vagelos Laboratory for Energy Science and Technology marks a significant milestone in its construction.

–Published 2023-02-08

Trained dogs can sniff out a deadly deer disease

The proof-of-concept investigation by School of Veterinary Medicine researchers suggests detection dogs could be an asset in the effort to identify, contain, and manage chronic wasting disease, a highly contagious ailment.

–Published 2023-02-08

Harnessing an innate protection against Ebola

School of Veterinary Medicine researchers have identified a cellular pathway that keeps Ebola virus from exiting human cells, with implications for developing new antivirals.

–Published 2023-02-02

How species partnerships evolve

Biologists from the School of Arts & Sciences explored how symbiotic relationships between species evolve to become specific or general, cooperative, or antagonistic.

–Published 2023-02-01

Eight Penn professors elected 2022 AAAS Fellows

Researchers from the School of Arts & Sciences, School of Engineering and Applied Science, Perelman School of Medicine, and School of Veterinary Medicine join a class of scientists, engineers, and innovators spanning 24 scientific disciplines.

–Published 2023-01-31

OCTOPUS, an optimized device for growing mini-organs in a dish

With OCTOPUS, Dan Huh’s team expands organoid research with a platform superior to conventional gel droplets, allowing researchers to replicate biological systems outside of the body.

–Published 2023-01-23

At a southern Iraq site, unearthing the archaeological passing of time

When Holly Pittman and colleagues from the University of Pennsylvania and University of Pisa returned to Lagash in the fall of 2022 for a fourth season, they knew they’d find more than ceramic fragments and another kiln.

–Published 2023-01-23

New single cell analysis tool

Penn experts have developed new analysis tool that combines a cell’s unique gene expression data with information about the cell’s origins. The method can be applied to identify new cell subsets throughout development and better understand drug resistance.

–Published 2023-01-19

What fabricated languages can teach us about real ones

Linguist Gareth Roberts of the School of Arts & Sciences uses “alien” languages and interactive games to show how social pressures shape our communication.

–Published 2023-01-18

How sex differences may influence lung injury

Comparing lung cells from male and female mice, School of Veterinary Medicine scientists found gene expression differences that may explain why older males are at a higher risk than females for worse outcomes from COVID-19 and similar diseases.

–Published 2023-01-12

Identifying a vulnerability in critical spacecraft networks

Penn Engineering’s Linh Thi Xuan Phan and a team of researchers have identified a critical security flaw in the networking approach used in aerospace and other safety-critical systems.

–Published 2023-01-05

Gut microbes can boost the motivation to exercise

A new study by Penn Medicine uncovers a gut-to-brain pathway that increases exercise performance.

–Published 2023-01-04

Kirigami breast reconstruction

Penn researchers have developed a new technique for aiding in the reconstruction of breast tissue following a mastectomy.

–Published 2022-12-22

Our 15 favorite stories from 2022

From interdisciplinary research and life-changing discoveries to a new University president and everything in between, this year at Penn has been one for the books.

–Published 2022-12-22

Wormhole-like dynamics

Theoretical physicists Vijay Balasubramanian and Jonathan Heckman of the School of Arts & Sciences speak with Penn Today to explain the implications of new research claiming to have observed wormhole-like teleportation on a quantum computer.

–Published 2022-12-21

A target for improving recovery from lung injury

After a bout of severe respiratory disease, some patients never fully recover. New research from the School of Veterinary Medicine identifies a factor responsible for inappropriate tissue regrowth after infection, pointing to a possible therapeutic target.

–Published 2022-12-13

For ‘spirit of innovation,’ three from Penn named National Academy of Inventors Fellows

Vijay Kumar of the School of Engineering and Applied Science and Katalin Karikó and Drew Weissman of the Perelman School of Medicine were honored with the recognition.

–Published 2022-12-08

People and places at Penn: Research

From Charles Addams Fine Arts Hall to the Schuylkill River, four researchers share their science and their spaces.

–Published 2022-12-05

Minimally invasive method tracks how the brain spends energy

Penn researchers have developed a new technique for monitoring the brain’s metabolic rate of oxygen consumption, a measure of the brain’s consumption of energy.

–Published 2022-12-01


Next Monday at 12pm: Experts in health, transportation systems, and emergency response will reflect on the vulnera… t.co/MzFClyWvIa

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Ursina R. Teitelbaum, MD, spoke with @TODAYshow about the increasing rates of #ColonCancer in young people and the… t.co/NMQeWTriAa

Welcoming our #AspiringLeaders and presidential mentors in our kick off session! #MPC2023

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We’re on now with @PennLDI hearing from a great panel about how climate change impacts health outcomes and exacerba… t.co/F64n2a24LA

Gabriella Tegen, CEO & Co-Founder @smartrr_app is making a splash in the digital subscription economy. Smart move,… t.co/FVAfpus5Pi

NOW LIVE! Tune in to hear experts discuss how we can better prepare for the #health impacts of climate change.… t.co/ITeDP35otY

What is the relationship between money and happiness? Two research efforts had contradicting results until they cam… t.co/d7MoEr0ett

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