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Story Ideas for Media 5/11/09


Record number of student researchers present their results – May 13. More than 500 of Ohio State’s most talented and high-achieving undergraduates will present their research in the 14th annual Denman Undergraduate Research Forum, from noon to 3 p.m. on Wednesday (5/13) at the Recreation & Physical Activity Center, 337 W. 17th Ave. The event this marks a new record for student involvement – 521 student presenters – up from 415 last year. Presenters include a student at Metro High School, and an entire chemistry class. A study on “Iraq War Fatalities by Population Size of Hometown,” and a project looking into “Partisan Apportionment in Ohio House Districts” are among the presentations. SEE: http://denman.osu.edu/


Ohio State study: Mites on hissing cockroach may benefit humans with allergies. Tiny mites living on the surface of Madagascar hissing cockroaches help decrease the presence of a variety of molds on the cockroaches’ bodies, potentially reducing allergic responses among humans who handle the popular insects, according to new research.
Scientists cultured and identified fungi on the cockroaches’ body surfaces with and without mites and discovered that the presence of these mites reduced the molds by at least 50 percent.
The mites eat saliva and organic debris that collects between the cockroaches’ legs, eliminating material that would foster mold growth on the insects’ bodies. The mites don’t appear to actually eat any mold.
“We haven’t proved yet that this helps the cockroaches, but reducing the fungi present on their surface is beneficial overall,” said Joshua Benoit, a doctoral student in entomology at Ohio State University and a co-author of the study. “By suppressing the molds, the mites have a role in reducing allergic reactions to cockroaches.” The research is published in the current issue of the journal Symbiosis. CONTACT: Emily Caldwell, (614) 292-8310. SEE: http://researchnews.osu.edu/archive/roachmite.htm


Ohio State hosts “Baseball Day” for Columbus City Schools 6th graders – May 12. More than 3,000 sixth-grade students from nearly 30 Columbus City Schools will visit Ohio State on Tuesday (5/12) for “Baseball Day.” Ohio State University and Columbus State Community College are joining with the school district for the event, which begins with a high-energy program at 10 a.m. in the Jerome Schottenstein Center followed by a Buckeye baseball game vs. Eastern Michigan at 12:05 p.m. at Bill Davis Stadium.
Now in it’s fifth year, Baseball Day is designed to show young students the opportunities for and advantages of higher education and the importance of staying in school. CONTACT: Amy Murray (614) 292-8385. SEE: http://www.osu.edu/news/newsitem2417

Ohio State and COSI unveil “Labs in Life – May 15. Ohio State University outreach takes on a new meaning as Ohio State unveils a working research laboratory at COSI, Columbus’ Center of Science and Industry. Located on COSI’s second floor, the new “Labs in Life” exhibit is a state-of-the-art laboratory where nutrition and physical activity research will be conducted and simultaneously demonstrated to the public. The exhibit is the nation’s first example of an active, working research laboratory in a science museum.
Reporters are invited to a media preview inside the glass-enclosed labs from 10:30 to 11:15 a.m. on Friday (5/15) at COSI, 333 W. Broad St. President E. Gordon Gee and COSI CEO David Chesebrough will make remarks, and media may interview the faculty researchers and students conducting the investigations. CONTACT: Amy Murray (614) 292-8385.

Lecture on the science behind “Angels and Demons” movie – May 14. On May 15th, Sony Pictures Entertainment will release Angels & Demons, a motion picture based on Dan Brown's best-selling novel. Starring Tom Hanks and directed by Ron Howard, the film focuses on an apparent plot to destroy the Vatican using antimatter made at the Large Hadron Collider and stolen from the European particle physics laboratory CERN.
Across the nation through a series of public lectures, scientists are using this opportunity to talk about the real science of antimatter, the Large Hadron Collider and the excitement of particle physics research.
At Ohio State, physics professors Richard Hughes and Brian Winer will offer “Angels & Demons Lecture Nights: The Science Revealed” at 7 p.m. on Thursday (5/14) at the Physics Research Building, 191 W. Woodruff Ave. SEE: Info_AngelsAndDemons@pacific.mps.ohio-state.edu

Conference honors Ohio State’s resident mathematical philosopher, math genius – May 14-17. For more than 40 years, Ohio State mathematics professor Harvey Friedman has been answering questions and solving problems that are so broad and complex that they can't be addressed through a single discipline or field. On May 14-17, Friedman’s fellow international scholars, disciples, and other admirers will descend upon Columbus for a special conference, “Foundational Adventures,” in honor of his 60th birthday. The conference features lectures and discussions on mathematics, theory, foundations and logic. Friedman will deliver the honoree lecture, “Foundational Adventures for the Future” at 2 p.m. on Friday (5/15) in 202 Pfahl Hall, A child prodigy, Friedman earned his Ph.D. in just three years at MIT joined the faculty at Stanford University three days before his 19th birthday. SEE: http://people.cohums.ohio-state.edu/tennant9/friedman_conference.html

Mythbusters: Seeking the truth about agriculture at Scarlet and Grey Ag Day – May 15. More than 600 Columbus area fourth and fifth grade students will visit campus on Friday (5/15) to learn about the world of agriculture through hands-on laboratory activities. The goal of Scarlet and Gray Ag Day is to educate students about where their food comes from and the importance of agriculture. With less than 2% of the U.S. population is directly involved in production agriculture, the event offers youngsters a chance to experience the softness of a newborn calf’s fur, the chirp of a baby chick, or the smell of freshly harvested soybeans. Sessions include Chick-hatch, Mozzarella in Minutes, Baby horses are Not Ponies!, Canulated Cow, Ag Communications, Entomology and many more. Students attend four sessions beginning at 10 a.m. in tents, arenas, and classrooms on the agriculture campus (west of the Olentangy River). CONTACT: Amy Murray, (614) 292-8385. SEE: http://www.ag.ohio-state.edu/~sg-agday/

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