News

From the College of Natural Sciences
Researchers Identify One of Alcohol’s Key Gateways to the Brain

Researchers Identify One of Alcohol’s Key Gateways to the Brain

Discovery is a significant step on the road to eventually developing drugs that could disrupt the interaction between alcohol and the brain.

What Real Scientific Controversy Looks Like


It is fun to be embroiled in an actual scientific controversy.

Engineering Algae to Make the "Wonder Material" Nanocellulose

Engineering Algae to Make the "Wonder Material" Nanocellulose

Genes from the family of bacteria that produce vinegar, Kombucha tea and nata de coco may help turn algae into solar-powered factories for producing nanocellulose.

Engineered Immune Cells Resist Infection from HIV and Could Ultimately Replace Drug Therapy

Engineered Immune Cells Resist Infection from HIV and Could Ultimately Replace Drug Therapy

Researchers cut and pasted a series of HIV-resistant genes into T cells, specialized immune cells targeted by the virus.

Lack of Key Enzyme in the Metabolism of Folic Acid Leads to Birth Defects

Lack of Key Enzyme in the Metabolism of Folic Acid Leads to Birth Defects

Scientists discover the clearest mechanistic link yet between folic acid and birth defects, which helps explain why folic acid dietary supplements don't prevent all neural tube defects.

Designer Bacteria May Lead to Better Vaccines

Designer Bacteria May Lead to Better Vaccines

61 new strains of genetically engineered bacteria may improve the efficacy of vaccines for diseases such as flu, pertussis, cholera and HPV.

Biologist Aims to Hunt Down and Destroy Viruses Where They Hide

Biologist Aims to Hunt Down and Destroy Viruses Where They Hide

Chris Sullivan is working to outwit the evolutionary strategies of viruses, like herpes and HIV, that form persistent lifelong infections.

Developing New Vaccines for Emerging Diseases is Focus of $6.5 Million Contract

The researchers will capitalize on a pioneering immunoprofiling technology recently developed at the university to develop a system that accelerates the process of development, testing and distribution of vaccines.

Systems Biologist Receives $2.5 Million Pioneer Award for Genome Research

Systems Biologist Receives $2.5 Million Pioneer Award for Genome Research

Marcotte’s project focuses on what he sees as the next step in “next-generation” genome sequencing technology.

Ancient Enzymes Function like Nanopistons to Unwind RNA

Ancient Enzymes Function like Nanopistons to Unwind RNA

Discovery marks a major step toward understanding the molecular mechanics for many steps in RNA biology.

Common Antifungal Drug Decreases Tumor Growth and Shows Promise as Cancer Therapy

Common Antifungal Drug Decreases Tumor Growth and Shows Promise as Cancer Therapy

An inexpensive antifungal drug, thiabendazole, slows tumor growth. Scientists in the College of Natural Sciences made this discovery by exploiting the evolutionary relatedness of yeast, frogs, mice and humans.

Video: Next Generation Sequencing

Video: Next Generation Sequencing

Next-generation genome analysis technology enables biologist Christopher Sullivan to study how viruses replicate and cause tumors in new ways.

50-Year Cholera Mystery Solved by Scientists at The University of Texas at Austin

50-Year Cholera Mystery Solved by Scientists at The University of Texas at Austin

The answers may help clear the way for a new class of antibiotics.
The Science of Soul Stealing

The Science of Soul Stealing

There's a scientific truth lurking behind vampire stories. We can be taken over, mind and body, by viruses.

Seed Size Is Controlled by Maternally Produced Small RNAs, Scientists Find

Seed Size Is Controlled by Maternally Produced Small RNAs, Scientists Find

New findings could enable scientists to develop biotechnological tools for improving seed production and crop yield.