Comfort dogs bring healing in times of tragedy

Twelve golden retrievers recently arrived in Orlando to bring com­fort to the sur­vivors and those grieving after the mass shooting at the gay night­club Pulse. Here, Northeastern’s Lisa Feldman Bar­rett, who spe­cial­izes in the psy­chology of emo­tion, explains how dogs help bring our ner­vous sys­tems back into bal­ance and, at least tem­porarily, make us feel safe.

The ecstasy of working underwater

Think your work envi­ron­ment is hectic? Imagine trying to com­plete a task with an air tank strapped to your back as you get tossed around by ocean swells. Working under­water can be daunting, but these three divers wouldn’t trade it for anything.

Marine Science Center works to protect oceans’ ‘vital role in sustaining life on Earth’

In honor of World Oceans Day, we spoke with Marine Sci­ence Center director Geoff Trussell about ocean con­ser­va­tion and what the MSC is doing to help pro­tect our marine ecosystem.

How serious is the threat posed by new ‘superbug’?

Reports of the arrival in the U.S. of a new superbug that is resis­tant to an antibi­otic of last resort have set off alarm bells among public health offi­cials. Last year, a team led by North­eastern pro­fessor Kim Lewis dis­cov­ered teixobactin, an antibi­otic that elim­i­nates bac­teria without encoun­tering any detectable resis­tance. We asked him to explain the new superbug, how wor­ried we should be, and how it might be stopped.

PhD student to study water access and control in Uganda through interviews—and equations

Matt Simonson got his under­grad­uate degree in math and inter­na­tional studies, but wasn’t sure they could be used together. That was until he found Northeastern’s first-​​in-​​the-​​nation doc­toral pro­gram in net­work science—and now he’s using math to under­stand human rela­tion­ships and tackle global challenges.

Researchers mine Twitter to reveal Congress’ ideological divide on climate change

Senate Democ­rats are three times more likely to follow science-​​related Twitter accounts than their Repub­lican peers, according to a new study led by Northeastern’s Brian Hel­muth. The research shows the growing divide between par­ties on the issue of cli­mate change, but also pro­vides hope, says Hel­muth, pointing to indi­vid­uals who cross the aisle and bridge the gap.

As Canada wildfires rage, faculty experts examine the ramifications

Wild­fires con­tinue to rage for a third week in and around the city of Fort McMurray in Canada’s Alberta province, the country’s oil-​​sands cap­ital. Some 96,000 people have been evac­u­ated from the area and 2,400 build­ings have been destroyed. We spoke with three North­eastern experts who share insight into how the cat­a­strophe will affect cli­mate change, the likely impact on U.S. con­sumers, and how the Fort McMurray com­mu­nity can recover.

The scientific reality of Game of Thrones fantasy

Fic­tion is often inspired by fact, and fan­tasy grounded in reality. That’s no more evi­dent than in Game of Thrones itself, where a deadly poison, a dis­fig­uring dis­ease, and a fiercely loyal species of animal have been inspired by real world beasts, brews, and afflic­tions. Here, Rebecca Certner, a PhD can­di­date in the Vollmer Lab at Northeastern’s Marine Sci­ence Center, offers a look at the sci­ence behind the show’s epic fantasyland.

3Qs: Experts contest claims of battery technology ‘breakthrough’

Recent research pub­lished in the pres­ti­gious journal Sci­ence described a break­through in lithium-​​battery tech­nology that could keep elec­tric cars going longer for less money. Northeastern’s K.M. Abraham, an expert on the topic, exam­ines the claims.