Structure of the brain’s ‘marijuana receptor’ revealed

New research by an inter­dis­ci­pli­nary team, including Northeastern’s Alexan­dros Makriyannis, reveals how THC—the psy­choac­tive ingre­dient in marijuana—gets into brain cells. The find­ings open the door to the devel­op­ment of new med­ica­tions, free from side effects, for con­di­tions from pain and obe­sity to neu­ro­log­ical dis­eases and addiction.

Engineering professor receives NIH ‘New Innovator Award’ for pioneering biomedical research

The National Insti­tutes of Health rec­og­nized Nikolai Slavov, assis­tant pro­fessor of bio­engi­neering, with its New Inno­vator Award. On win­ning the award, Slavov said, “There is this momentum and enthu­siasm for taking smart risks among both the fac­ulty and stu­dents at Northeastern—asking big ques­tions and doing what­ever is required to con­tribute to their resolution.”

Northeastern network scientist part of international research group selected for $75M One Brave Idea Research Award

Uni­ver­sity Dis­tin­guished Pro­fessor Albert-​​László Barabási brings his exper­tise at mod­eling com­plex net­works to an inter­dis­ci­pli­nary research group focused on ending coro­nary heart disease.

Study: Using Big Data to monitor societal events shows promise, but the coding tech needs work

Dis­tin­guished Pro­fessor David Lazer and his col­leagues ana­lyzed global-​​scale data­bases of news events and found them wanting. Their rec­om­men­da­tions for improve­ments would enable researchers to build models antic­i­pating every­thing from the esca­la­tion of con­flicts to the pro­gres­sion of epidemics.

Advancing Northeastern’s leadership in drug discovery

Diomedes Logo­thetis, the new chair of the Depart­ment of Phar­ma­ceu­tical Sci­ences, has a vision: To advance Northeastern’s standing as a go-​​to insti­tu­tion for aca­d­emic researchers inter­ested in drug dis­covery. “We can be the engine dri­ving the under­standing of how new drugs act,” he says.

Undergraduate Lab Fair opens windows into worlds of research

When Andrew Tu, E’20, arrived at North­eastern last fall, he didn’t expect to be towing a 7.5-foot buoy by hand into the ocean come summer. But that world opened up to him at the Under­grad­uate Lab Fair when he learned about asso­ciate pro­fessor Ste­fano Basagni’s work on an under­water wire­less com­mu­ni­ca­tion network.

3Qs: Why Samsung Galaxy Note 7s are igniting and how to deal with the recall

Fed­eral reg­u­la­tors yes­terday announced a formal recall of some 1 mil­lion Sam­sung Galaxy Note 7 smart­phones after reports of the devices over­heating and igniting. North­eastern research pro­fessor K.M. Abraham, an expert on lithium-​​ion bat­tery tech­nology, explains the phe­nom­enon and how to respond to it.

New research offers ‘critical insights’ for treating, preventing Alzheimer’s disease

North­eastern pro­fessor Lee Makowski and his col­leagues sug­gest that Alzheimer’s dis­ease may progress not like falling domi­noes, with one mol­e­c­ular event sparking the for­ma­tion of plaques throughout the brain, but rather like a fire­works display.

Northeastern alumnus the genius behind life-​​saving EpiPen

Sheldon Kaplan “always wanted to be an engi­neer and to go to North­eastern,” recalls his son, Michael. Kaplan lived out those dreams, and the world-​​famous EpiPen he invented has saved count­less lives. Kaplan, who died in 2009, was inducted this year into the National Inven­tors Hall of Fame. Here’s his story.

App vs. website: Which best protects your privacy? It depends

Both apps and web­sites leak per­sonal infor­ma­tion, including names, gender, phone num­bers, and e-​​mail. But don’t despair. North­eastern researchers, led by assis­tant pro­fessor David Choffnes, have devel­oped an auto­mated system to help you know which plat­form to use for your online interactions.

A survivor’s story: From genocide to healthcare visionary

Deogra­tias Niy­i­zonkiza, the pro­tag­o­nist in author Tracy Kidder’s Strength in What Remains, inspires first-​​year stu­dents to under­stand “the pain of others so you can work to never let people suffer like that again.” The book was this year’s selec­tion for the university’s First Pages program.

Fear not: The number of locally transmitted cases of Zika in US to be very small

North­eastern researchers project the prob­a­bility of locally trans­mitted Zika cases out­side of Florida to be extremely low, ‘just one or two.’ Much of the U.S. has no mos­qui­toes with Zika and will remain unaffected.