Research on how flu drug works may reveal how to outsmart variants

Researcher sees parallels in the challenges of developing antiviral drugs for respiratory infections caused by influenza and coronaviruses

Research on how flu drug works may reveal how to outsmart variantsA University of Alberta laboratory has uncovered the mechanism of action for a recently approved influenza drug in newly published research. The scientists discovered that the drug baloxavir marboxil binds highly efficiently to an enzyme that is key to how the influenza virus replicates inside an infected patient. They also showed how a mutation of…

Are owls wise, all-seeing and good luck – or harbingers of calamity?

One superstition about owls had it that making a potion from the ash of owl eggs improved vision

Are owls wise, all-seeing and good luck – or harbingers of calamity?Folklore abounds with superstition related to owls. I thought it might be fun to share some superstitions I’ve gleaned about owls, since this is the best time of year to see them. These nocturnal creatures often appear in horror films since tufts of feathers on the top of some owls’ heads give them the appearance…

Any memory boost from morning exercise is short-lived

U of A undergrad researcher finds surprising effect on memory eight hours after physical activity

Any memory boost from morning exercise is short-livedExercising first thing in the morning makes long-term memory recall increasingly hard as the day continues, according to surprising results from an undergraduate student-led study that challenges conventional wisdom about the positive role physical activity plays in making new memories. “If you’re going to exercise in the morning, you might have a little trouble remembering…

Restaurants face a great reset, thanks to COVID-19

Canada’s food service industry has suffered. But the pandemic may be exactly what it has been waiting for to make things better

Restaurants face a great reset, thanks to COVID-19It was certainly a year to be forgotten for the food service industry. Statistics Canada numbers told us this week that food service sales dropped a whopping 32 per cent from the fourth quarter of 2019 to the same period in 2020. The food retail/service ratio, a key metric to assess how important food service…

News and notes from the auto industry

A new Outlander, Nissan honoured for safety features, Kia offers a new ‘life utility vehicle,’ Ford‘s new Bronco goes modular

News and notes from the auto industryWith spring just around the corner, automotive updates, news releases and new vehicle launches are coming thick and fast. Here are a few that have come my way: Mitsubishi has just released its 2022 Outlander. Here’s how the manufacturer describes it: “Based on the product concept ‘I-Fu-Do-Do,’ which means authentic and majestic in Japanese, the…

U of A scientists ready to create compounds that will power the future

Research will further applications in everything from solar energy and next-generation batteries to cleaner mining and pharmaceuticals

U of A scientists ready to create compounds that will power the futureWhen Russian chemist Dmitri Mendeleev published the periodic table of the elements in 1869, he invented not only a roadmap for access to all known and future compounds, but also the “chemist’s playground.” “It’s our playbook,” said the University of Alberta’s Dennis Hall, a professor in the Faculty of Science and Canada Research Chair in Boron Chemistry…

How to support Indigenous entrepreneurs on the road to success

Business leaders should help build up capacity through mentorship and coaching, then start looking to spend at Indigenous suppliers

How to support Indigenous entrepreneurs on the road to successJeff and William approached me in the fall of 2019 about helping with their ecotourism business. They started the business in 2014 and wanted help growing it and getting more clients. They felt if they could share their traditions and culture with the world, they could provide meaningful jobs for the youth of their community.…

Gig economy offers new efficiencies for public sector

Unfortunately, government hiring rules and public sector unions make it hard to leverage the gig economy

Gig economy offers new efficiencies for public sectorMy landlord friend had a problem and the solution was so novel he had to tell me about it. He lives in Winnipeg but his house tenant in Regina couldn’t remove snow from the property. Not long ago, finding someone to deal with that might have been difficult or expensive, especially if a long-term arrangement…

Canadian briefs U.S. policy-makers on removing CO2 from atmosphere

U of A scientist co-led expert panel on mineral carbonation, briefed U.S. congressional staff on opportunities in the United States

Canadian briefs U.S. policy-makers on removing CO2 from atmosphereA scientist at the University of Alberta is lending her expertise on mineral carbonation to policy-makers in the United States in hopes of reducing atmospheric carbon dioxide on a mass scale. Sasha Wilson, an associate professor in the Faculty of Science, worked with the American non-profit Energy Futures Initiative (EFI). In December 2020, Wilson and her colleagues co-led…

Canada needs to deepen its ties with India

We can reduce our economic vulnerability to China by deepening our ties with the world’s largest democracy

Canada needs to deepen its ties with IndiaToo often, the relationship between Canada and India has been about our past. It’s become about how, through the years, we have failed to connect with each other. Some stories, like the Komagata Maru or Air India, are profound tragedies that we must never forget. I firmly believe that the key to a secure future…
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