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Fat in feces points to early presence of colorectal cancer

Herbert Hill
Herbert Hill

Scientists at Washington State University and Johns Hopkins Medical School have discovered a fast, noninvasive method that could lead to the early diagnosis of colorectal cancer.

Using ultrasensitive, high-speed technology, the researchers identified a suite of molecules in the feces of mice that signifies the presence of precancerous polyps.

This “metabolic fingerprint” matches changes in both mouse and human colon tumor tissues and suggests a potential new diagnostic tool for early detection of colorectal cancer in a clinical setting.

Herbert Hill, WSU Regents professor of chemistry, and graduate student Michael Williams conducted the study in collaboration with Raymond Reeves, WSU School of Molecular Biosciences, and Linda Resar, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine.

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WSU News

NSF features WSU research on pygmy rabbit, habitat


Lisa A. Shipley, professor in the School of the Environment, is featured in a new Science Nation video from the National Science Foundation about sagebrush habitat.

The video considers the southeastern Idaho region from the perspective of a tiny forager – the pygmy rabbit.

Shipley, a wildlife ecologist at Washington State University, collaborates on the research with ecologists Janet Rachlow, University of Idaho, and Jennifer Forbey, Boise State University.

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National Science Foundation



WiSTEM encourages, mentors WSU women in STEM

Elizabeth Magill

As a sophomore transfer student, Elizabeth Magill wanted to start on the path to graduate school right away.

“I was really passionate about my zoology studies but didn’t know how to get involved outside of class,” she said. “In my junior year, I met two female graduate teaching assistants. They gave me direction, helped me get a job in a zoology lab and are still my friends and mentors today.”

In appreciation for that guidance, Magill is helping other students by participating in the WiSTEM initiative – Women in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics – at Washington State University.

The School of Biological Sciences (SBS) launched the effort this fall to connect young women interested in STEM careers with mentors, networking opportunities and a supportive community of like-minded individuals.

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WSU News


Institute promotes nuclear science research, collaboration

Aurora Clark
Aurora Clark

The new Institute for Nuclear Science and Technology (INST) will bring together diverse scientists and researchers at Washington State University to address global challenges in security, human health, energy and environmental quality.

“At a national level, one of the major research problems in nuclear science and technology is that experts working on one specific type of problem often are isolated from colleagues working in other areas,” said Aurora Clark, professor of chemistry and director of the institute.

Approved by the WSU Board of Regents in September, INST includes faculty from three colleges and will enable creative solutions to challenges in radioecology, nuclear energy, nuclear medicine and nuclear policy.

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WSU News

Trump Outpaces Clinton In Wisconsin TV Ads

Wesleyan Media Project Review Found Clinton Stopped Running TV Ads In Wisconsin Last Month.

A new survey of campaign advertising shows Donald Trump continued to run TV ads in Wisconsin over the past month while Hillary Clinton did not.

Travis Ridout

The Wesleyan Media Project, co-directed by WSU political science professor Travis Ridout, reviews broadcast television and national cable ad buys mentioning candidates. In most states, it found pro-Clinton ads significantly outnumbered pro-Trump ads between Sept. 16 and Oct. 13.

But the reverse was true in Wisconsin where either Trump or the conservative super PAC Reform America Fund aired a total of about 2,400 ads while Clinton and her allies aired none.

“I think she’s decided that she’s pretty much got Wisconsin locked up and there’s no need to invest any more resources in the state,” Ridout said. The Trump campaign’s path to victory on a national scale is much narrower than Clinton’s, which could explain why it is still advertising in Wisconsin, he said.

“Maybe they’re seeing something in their polling. Maybe they’re looking at the demographics of the state — a fairly white state — and thinking maybe they can gain some traction there if they invest in some additional advertising.”

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Wisconsin Public Radio