University Of Pittsburgh

Researchers at the University of Pittsburgh have concluded that a standardized approach to diagnosing and treating sepsis in its early stages does not affect survival rates.

The five-year, $8.4 million study examined 1,351 patients with septic shock in 31 hospitals across the U.S. and found no difference in treatment effectiveness.

Dr. Donald Yealy, chair of Pitt’s Department of Emergency Medicine, was one of the lead researchers in the study. He said it doesn’t matter what type of treatment a patient receives, as long as it’s early.

Deanna Garcia / 90.5 WESA

The Institute for Entrepreneurial Excellence at the University of Pittsburgh has been working with businesses in the region for 20 years. Its annual report was released Wednesday at Turner Dairy Farms, one of the members of the institute.

Founder and Executive Director Ann Dugan said in 2013 the institute helped about 900 entrepreneurs.

“We had 47 startup businesses,” Dugan said. “That was where they came through the door with an idea, today their door is open, the lights are on, music is on, they have sales.”

The University of Pittsburgh has tapped a U.S. Commerce Department official to be its next chancellor.

Patrick Gallagher, the acting deputy secretary of the agency, is set to start at Pitt in August. He succeeds Mark Nordenberg, who spent 19 years as chancellor.

The 50-year-old Gallagher currently serves as chief operating officer of the Commerce Department. The agency has 40,000 employees and a $10 billion budget.

The announcement follows a board of trustees vote on Saturday.

From major league athletes to children, more than 1.7 million Americans sustain concussions each year.

That’s why the University of Pittsburgh and UPMC received a $300,000 grant from General Electric and the NFL for a project to find a better way to “see” concussions.

The Pitt researchers are testing high definition fiber-tracking (HDFT) to determine if it can accurately and consistently aid in determining a diagnosis of concussion and injury prognosis.

You might not have ever heard of eastern equine encephalitis virus (EEEV) — it only affects five to 30 people in the United States annually — but it kills about half the people it infects, doesn’t have a cure and is becoming more common.

That’s according to William Klimstra, who, along with other University of Pittsburgh researchers, has made a major discovery that could lead to possible treatment for and prevention against the mosquito-borne virus.

What is the best way to build an AC/DC hybrid power system? What does the power grid control system of the future look like?

Those are the types of questions researchers and students at the University of Pittsburgh are hoping to answer with Thursday’s opening of a new electric power systems lab.

The lab was created with the support of the Dublin, Ireland-based power management company EATON, which has offices in the Pittsburgh area. 

What do an iPhone and a salamander have in common?

Not much now, but University of Pittsburgh researchers think they have created a way for objects like cell phones to regenerate themselves when broken the way amphibians do.

Pitt researchers have developed a computational model to create a new polymer gel that could simulate regeneration in complex materials.

Principal investigator Anna Balazs, a Pitt chemical engineering professor, said they were inspired by amphibians’ ability to grow back parts of their bodies.

What if HIV was not only preventable, but also if sexually active individuals had a list of options to prevent the disease that newly infects an estimated 50,000 people a year in the United States?

The Pittsburgh-based Microbicide Trials Network (MTN) has been awarded $70 million for use over seven years to develop and test HIV prevention products.

MTN has completed 13 trials since 2006 from its base at the University of Pittsburgh and Magee-Women’s Research Institute.

People living in the Pittsburgh metropolitan area are significantly more likely to contact their public officials, attend public meetings, volunteer and join community groups than the average American.

That’s according to a new report, called the Pittsburgh Civic Health Index from the University of Pittsburgh, Carnegie Mellon University and the National Conference on Citizenship.

Fifth (Pittsburgh)Red Celebrates AIDS Awareness

Dec 2, 2013
Tim Camerato/90.5 WESA

County officials, HIV/AIDS advocates, and survivors gathered in downtown Pittsburgh Monday to mark International World AIDS Day and to blow up a 30-foot balloon ribbon onto Fifth Ave. Place.

Allegheny County Executive Rich Fitzgerald noted it’s been more than 30 years since the first AIDS cases were reported.

NYU School of Social Work

In the new book, Stuck in Place: Urban Neighborhoods and the End of Progress Toward Racial Equality, Dr. Patrick Sharkey, an associate professor of sociology at New York University, explores what he calls some of the most persistent forms of racial inequality.

From gaps in income to academic test scores, he looks at race and neighborhoods over multiple generations.

The legal drinking age in the U.S. is 21, but as many people who’ve gone through high school and who are familiar with pop culture know, kids finds ways around that all the time.

A new study from researchers at the University of Pittsburgh finds that teens that do their drinking alone may be at greater risk for alcohol problems later in life.

Flickr user rwoan

Nearly 200 couples from as far away as California will be renewing their wedding vows at Heinz Chapel’s 75th anniversary celebration on Saturday.

Pat Gibbons is the director of Heinz Chapel, located on the University of Pittsburgh campus. She said the response to this weekend’s festivities has far exceeded her expectations. Including 196 married couples, she is anticipating around 560 guests for the vow-renewal ceremony.

For well over a decade, scientists have known about a class of polymers that would react to and move toward light with no other power source.

While certainly fascinating, the technology was limited in its application in the real world, because the movement was so slow.

“So we asked ourselves, can we make these materials move faster and increase the mechanical power that they generate?”

The University of Pittsburgh is combining resources to spark innovation and increase support for entrepreneurial initiatives on and off campus.

Pitt Thursday launched the Innovation Institute, which consolidates the existing offices of Technology Management and Enterprise Development as well as the Institute for Entrepreneurial Excellence.

Beginning January, students at the University of Pittsburgh’s regional campuses will be able to attend classes at different campuses without the commute.

The newly launched Video Learning Initiative will allow students at regional campuses to take classes from other University of Pittsburgh campuses using video conferencing.

Wesley Jamison, vice president of academic affairs at Pitt Greensburg, said the initiative’s goal is to allow Pitt’s regional campuses, and eventually all of Pitt’s campuses, to share courses.

One out of every three people in the United States feels the painful inflammation of periodontal disease, or gum disease.

That’s according to University of Pittsburgh researchers who believe they have discovered a way to treat the disease by mimicking a tumor.

Steve Little, associate professor and chair of the Department of Chemical and Petroleum Engineering, said tumors have a way of hacking into the body’s immune system and convincing the system to accept it.

A new survey by the University of Pittsburgh and PittsburghTODAY found that 65 percent of the region’s citizens view air quality as either a minor problem, or not a problem at all.

This is despite continually low air quality rankings by the American Lung Association.

Doug Heuck, Director of PittsburghTODAY, said many people mistakenly think that because they can’t see the air pollution, it’s not there.

The University of Pittsburgh and UPMC are taking part in the second phase of a national project to improve battlefield medicine.

The Armed Forces Institute for Regenerative Medicine (AFIRM) is a consortium of 30 academic centers led by the Wake Forest Institute for Generative Medicine and McGowan Institute for Regenerative Medicine, a joint effort of Pitt and UPMC.

Over a five-year period, AFIRM will have $75 million from the Department of Defense and five years to research how to best heal skin burns, arm and hand wounds, and transplant faces and hands of those wounded.

A transgender man has filed a lawsuit against the University of Pittsburgh, claiming he was expelled and subject to FBI scrutiny because of a dispute over locker room use.

The lawsuit was filed Monday by 24-year-old Seamus Johnston, of Johnstown. He was born a woman but filed a name change with Pitt in 2011 and enrolled in a men's weightlifting class. Officials told Johnston not to use the men's locker room, and later banned him from the school, according to the lawsuit.

Elderly patients hospitalized with an infection, like pneumonia, are twice as likely to be diagnosed with dementia than those who were not.

That’s according to a new study from the University of Pittsburgh that followed 5,888 patients over the age of 65 in four areas across the country: Winston-Salem, N.C.; Sacramento, Calif.; Hagerstown, Md.; and Pittsburgh.

The study was done in conjunction with researchers from the University of Washington, University of California, University of Illinois, John Hopkins University and Columbia Medical Center.

Kiran Foster / Flickr

On college campuses across the country, mental health is becoming an increasing concern. In the past year, one in five students have received a psychiatric diagnosis or been treated for mental health issues.

As a result, there is a rising demand for mental health professionals to provide the proper treatment for students. According to Tevya Zukor, Director of the University of Pittsburgh Counseling Center, there's an increased need because of the de-stigmatization of mental health issues among the public.

He says students are seeking treatment at earlier ages and many come into college with a history of mental health treatment. A second reason is that in the past 10 to 15 years there have been huge advancements in psychotropic medicine.

A recent study published in the British Journal of Psychiatry used brain scans to measure blood flow to parts of the brain associated with emotion regulation to gauge if the subjects had unipolar depression or bipolar disorder.

The study hoped to identify brain function markers that identified the two types of depression.

The study used 44 Pittsburgh-area women and was conducted by researchers from the University of Pittsburgh, Kings College London, the University of South Florida and the University of Texas Southwestern.

Conservation and preservation is the theme of a new exhibition at the University of Pittsburgh’s Art Gallery.

The gallery was chosen by Heritage Preservation to take part in the 2013 Conservation Assessment Program. In June, a professional paper conservator spent two days examining the layout of the gallery as well as the site’s policies, procedures and environmental conditions.

An initial report points to issues in lighting, shelving and storage that could harm artwork over time.

Tougher Competition for the Post-Big East Panthers

Aug 30, 2013
Pallyboy33 / Flickr


This Labor Day marks the beginning of a new era of football for the University of Pittsburgh.

After a storied history as members of the Big East Conference, the Pittsburgh Panthers will face stiff competition in their first game as members of the Atlantic Coast Conference.

The Panthers will play against last year’s Orange Bowl champions Florida State, a striking change from the previous year’s opener, Youngstown State. University of Pittsburgh Athletic Director Steve Pederson says although the team faces a tougher battle, playing against competitors like Florida State is in the best interest of the team.

A student group at the University of Pittsburgh has been successful in its effort to get the school’s administration to sign on to a program aimed at guaranteeing workers rights wherever official school apparel is manufactured.

“As soon as I found out for sure I jumped up and down for like a good two or three minutes,” said Joe Thomas, co-founder of the Pitt chapter of Americans for Informed Democracy.

Airport scanners identify the basics — shirts, shoes, a clear travel-sized bottle of shampoo — but what about your molecules?

University of Pittsburgh physicists have invented the world’s smallest terahertz detector that could soon scan molecules in a fashion similar to airport screenings.

Using terahertz radiation — a level of light far below what the human eye can notice — the detector might have the ability to chemically identify single molecules.

Jeremy Levy, a professor at Pitt’s Department of Physics and Astronomy, compared his work to a child’s toy.

A new study partially conducted by researchers at the University of Pittsburgh found that those with the herpes simplex virus 1, which typically causes cold sores, displayed reduced cognitive function.

The researchers studied people in India with and without herpes and with and without schizophrenia. They looked at their cognitive functions using a computerized battery and assessed different aspects of top processes.

PA Youth Advisory Board / Facebook

Several years before he was a Youth Quality Improvement Specialist at the University of Pittsburgh, Christopher Nobles faced the same challenges experienced by roughly 1000 Pennsylvania youth each year: the prospect of aging out of the state’s foster care system and facing a new life.

According to Nobles, the primary challenge for a young person who has aged out of the foster care system is the lack of a lifelong familial support structure. While the support of a steady home is something most eighteen year olds can take for granted, the sort of security a steady home provides is missing from the lives of children in foster care.

“There’s a great deal of psychological stress,” Nobles says, emphasizing that in foster care “You grow up sort of having to audition -- for everything.”

The University of Pittsburgh is concluding its Energy Law and Policy Institute Friday, a two-day forum bringing together legal experts, policymakers and industry representatives to discuss the nation’s energy future.

Topics covered at the event include tax incentive financing for energy projects, the law and policy of pipeline infrastructure and fossil fuel exports, changing environmental regulations regarding shale gas development, and land use and title law in energy issues.

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