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Ocean & Earth Sciences

Board of Regents’ Medal for Excellence in Research awarded

From left, Brian W. Bowen, Loïc Le Marchand and Kristin Pauker

The 2016 Regents’ Medal for Excellence in Research was awarded to Brian W. Bowen, Loïc Le Marchand and Kristin Pauker. The research medal is awarded by the University of Hawaiʻi Board of Regents in recognition of scholarly contributions that expand the boundaries of knowledge and enrich the lives of students and the community. Regents’ medal honorees Brian W. Bowen Research professor, ...

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UH leads $20M research partnership to secure Hawaiʻi’s water future

system-water-research-grant

Increasing population, changing land use practices and issues relating to climate change are contributing to growing concerns over water quality and quantity in Hawaiʻi. To help the state address this critical issue, the National Science Foundation has awarded $20 million to the University of Hawaiʻi to do a five-year, groundbreaking study of water sustainability issues through a collaboration called ʻIke ...

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Student projects shine at UH Mānoa Undergraduate Showcase

UH Mānoa Undergraduate Showcase

University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa undergraduate students from all fields of study will present their faculty-supervised research project or creative work at the Undergraduate Showcase on Friday, May 6. This free and open-to-the-public event will feature 130 presentations and posters by 150 undergraduate students in the disciplines of arts and humanities, engineering and computer sciences, natural sciences and social sciences. ...

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Whitlow Au awarded gold medal by Acoustical Society of America

Whitlow Au at Hawaiʻi Institute of Marine Biology with dolphin BJ.

Whitlow W. L. Au, emeritus research professor at the Hawaiʻi Institute of Marine Biology (HIMB), has been named recipient of the gold medal of the Acoustical Society of America (ASA) for contributions to understanding underwater biosonar and for service to the acoustical society. The gold medal, which will be presented at the 171st meeting of the ASA on May 25, ...

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Jellyfish researcher Angel Yanagihara chosen as a Fulbright Specialist

Angel Yanagihara collecting jellyfish in Waikiki, Hawaii

University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa researcher Angel Yanagihara has been selected as a Fulbright Specialist by the J. William Fulbright Council for International Exchange of Scholars. Yanagihara is an assistant research professor at the John A. Burns School of Medicine and the Békésy Laboratory of Neurobiology in the Pacific Biosciences Research Center. Her expertise and innovative technologies were specifically sought in ...

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Protecting diversity on coral reefs: DNA may hold the key

Coral reef in the Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument teeming with fishes. (credit: James Watt, courtesy of PMNM/NOAA)

Coral reefs are widely known for their stunning array of color, shape and forms of life, making them a model for extreme biodiversity. Hidden within the multitude of reef inhabitants, but no less important, is their genetic diversity— variability in DNA that gives species the capacity for adaptation, speciation and resilience in the face of stress. Research published on April 27 by a ...

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Coral toolkit allows floating larvae to transform into reef skeletons

Two newly settled juveniles and a swimming larva on coralline algae. (credit: H Putnam)

In a study published today, researchers from the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa, Rutgers University and the University of Haifa identified key and novel components of the molecular “toolkit” that allow corals to build their skeletons (called biomineralization) and described when—in the transformation from floating larvae to coral skeleton—these components are used. Corals are the sum of a symbiotic relationship between cnidarian animals and millions of ...

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Microbial takeover on coral reefs?

A healthy reef dominated by calcifying corals and coralline algae, Line Islands. (photo credit: Jennifer Smith, Scripps Institution of Oceanography)

Coral reefs—the world’s most productive and diverse marine ecosystems—rely on a masterful recycling program to stay healthy. The corals and algae that form the base of the reef’s food web release a variety of nutrients that support a complex and efficient food chain. But when this system gets out of whack, the cycle breaks down and endangers the coral reef’s ...

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Heat trumps cold in the treatment of jellyfish stings

Jellyfish_reduced

A recent study by researchers at the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa, published this month in the journal Toxins, may finally put to rest the ongoing debate about whether to use cold or heat to treat jellyfish stings. Their systematic and critical review provides overwhelming evidence that clinical outcomes from all kinds of jellyfish stings are improved following treatment with ...

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New imaging technique reveals vulnerability of coral reefs

Nyssa Silbiger conducting filed work.

Corals, the primary reef builders on coral reefs, are often the star player in research studies addressing the impacts of climate change on coral reefs because they are the foundation of coral reef ecosystems. However, the breakdown of coral reefs from borers (such as bivalves, sponges, and marine worms) and grazers (such as parrotfish and urchins)—called bioerosion—and growth from encrusting ...

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