Just what Is a 'Resilient' Forest, Anyway?

More than a century ago, Sierra Nevada forests faced almost no competition from neighboring trees for resources. The tree densities of the late 1800s would astonish most Californians today. Because of fire suppression, trees in current forests live alongside six to seven times as many trees as their ancestors did — competing for less water amid drier and hotter conditions.

A recent study from UC Davis suggests that low-density stands that largely eliminate tree competition are key to creating forests resilient to the multiple stressors of severe wildfire, drought, bark beetles and climate change.

International study identifies predictors of severe outcomes in children with COVID-19

A new international study offers a clearer picture of the impact of COVID-19 infection and the risk of severe outcomes on young people around the world. The study was co-led by a team of researchers from UC Davis Health, University of Calgary’s Cumming School of Medicine and Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago. It followed more than 10,300 children at 41 emergency departments in 10 countries, including the United States and Canada.

Omicron: 10 things to know about the very contagious COVID-19 variant

In a very short time, the highly infectious Omicron COVID-19 variant has upended many aspects of our lives. Both California and Sacramento County are seeing record numbers of infections and testing is in great demand. Statewide, the positivity rate is over 21%. Luckily, Omicron appears to cause milder illness in many people.

How COVID might sow chaos in the brain

“Brain fog” is not a formal medical descriptor. But it aptly describes an inability to think clearly that can turn up in multiple sclerosis, cancer or chronic fatigue. Recently, the condition has grabbed headlines because of reports that it afflicts those recovering from COVID-19.

New research from UC Davis uncovers challenges and concerns faced by pregnant Californians as the pandemic unfolds

In March 2020, when California imposed a shutdown to curb the spread of COVID-19 outbreak, many pregnant people experienced pandemic-related fear and anxiety.

New ways to detect COVID-19

UC Davis engineers Cristina Davis and Heather Bischel are using their respective expertise to develop new ways to detect COVID-19.

Davis is developing a portable breathalyzer-like device that rapidly diagnoses COVID-19 and tells doctors how severe the case is going to be. Bischel is using wastewater to detect the virus, follow viral trends across the City of Davis and the UC Davis campus and help prevent outbreaks. Both methods are poised to become staples in the response to COVID-19 and future pandemics.

Research Highlights

How is the Earth formed? Deep mantle krypton reveals the answers

Krypton from the Earth's mantle reveals that small rock bodies from the icy outer solar system hit the Earth millions of years before the big crunch. The samples also showed that the young Earth was hit by meteorites and sucked up dust and gas from the solar nebula (the cloud that surrounds the sun).

People underestimate how much anxiety household sounds can produce for dogs

Research at the University of California, Davis, has examined the potential of common household noises to make dogs anxious. Although it’s common knowledge that sudden, loud noises — fireworks or thunderstorms, for example — can easily trigger anxiety in man’s best friend, the results point to a much wider range of sounds our dogs might become frightened by.

Study challenges evolutionary theory that DNA mutations are random

A simple roadside weed may hold the key to understanding and predicting DNA mutation, according to new research from University of California, Davis, and the Max Planck Institute for Developmental Biology in Germany. The findings, published today in the journal Nature, radically change our understanding of evolution and could one day help researchers breed better crops or even help humans fight cancer.

Innovation News

Breeding plants with genes from 1 parent

Scientists are a step closer to breeding plants with genes from only one parent. New research led by plant biologists at the University of California, Davis, published Nov. 19 in Science Advances, shows the underlying mechanism behind eliminating half the genome and could make for easier and more rapid breeding of crop plants with desirable traits such as disease resistance.

UC Davis researchers developing novel cancer drug that mimics viral mechanisms

Yoshihiro Izumiya, professor and cheerleader of the Viral and Pathogens Associated Malignancies Initiative at the UC Davis Comprehensive Cancer Center and Michiko Shimoda, assistant professor in the Department of Dermatology along with their research group are studying how viruses hijack host cells for replication. They are utilizing a mechanism, which a virus uses for taking a host RNA synthesis, as a drug development strategy.

UC Davis researchers develop ice cube that doesn’t melt or grow mold

Researchers at the University of California, Davis, have developed a new type of cooling cube that could revolutionize how food is kept cold and shipped fresh without relying on ice or traditional cooling packs. These plastic-free, “jelly ice cubes” do not melt, are compostable and anti-microbial, and prevent cross-contamination. 

Startup aims to turn a mother's milk into medicine

Matrubials Inc. is using milk that has nourished infants throughout human history to try to cure diseases that affect people of all ages today. The company spun out from the Foods for Health Institute at the University of California Davis, where associate director Ishita Shah has spent the last eight years researching the components of human breast milk.

UC Davis engineered antibody helps block SARS-CoV-2 transmission

Researchers at UC Davis Health have engineered a novel antibody, FuG1, that can directly interfere with the cell-to-cell transmission ability of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19. FuG1 targets the enzyme furin, which the virus uses for its efficient chain of infections in human cells. The approach could be added to existing SARS-CoV-2 antibody cocktails for greater function against emerging variants.

Fighting California Wildfires

This episode of UC Davis LIVE explores how professional firefighters responding to wildfires and what’s new in wildland firefighting.

‘The Backdrop’ Podcast Features UC Davis Economist on Supply Chain Bottlenecks and Inflation

In this episode of The Backdrop, Kadee Russ, professor of economics at UC Davis, discusses how supply chains got backed up, and how these critical systems that produce and deliver products to consumers can be made more resilient. 

A Conversation with Dr. David Kessler, Chief Science Officer for the White House COVID-19 Response Team

Upcoming Events

Davis Discovery Days to Highlight Research and Innovation at UC Davis

Launching this Spring, Davis Discovery Days is a collaborative weeklong schedule of events for the innovation community, fostering the most significant advances in research and innovation for global impact. Ranked first in the nation for agriculture and veterinary medicine, UC Davis is also global leader in research and innovation, with over 1,500 active patents and $968 million in external research funding for the 2020-21 fiscal year.

May 9-13, 2022
View Recordings of Past Events:

Notable Grants

UC Davis Awarded $6.5 Million to Develop AI Breeding Tool for Crops
UC Davis to Lead $15 Million Research Into Climate-Change-Resistant Wheat
UC Davis receives $12.9 million grant aimed at improving health through precision nutrition

15 Join Society of Hellman Fellows
UC Davis Professor Kent Lloyd Appointed to National Institute of Health (NIH) Council of Councils
The Wolf Prize in Agriculture, 2022‚ is awarded to professor Ronald
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