Scratch these off of your Christmas shopping list
(Diane Mar-Nicolle - December 10, 2015) Last minute Christmas shoppers are a boon to the lottery business—who can resist buying a $1 stocking stuffer that could result in millions for the recipient? Tom Loughin can. Loughin, chair of the SFU Department of Statistics and Actuarial Science says, “While the draws are as random as they can be, the whole game is rigged against the player. The odds and payoffs are such that, on average, a person who plays consistently is merely piling up bigger and bigger losses.” Read more...

Genes responsible for the three kinds of male ruffs identified
(Diane Mar-Nicolle - November 16, 2015)
SFU biologist Dov Lank and a team of researchers have identified the genes responsible for three different kinds of male ruff (Philomachus pugnax)—a species of wading bird. The ruff is the only bird species in which three kinds of males exist, each having its own approach to courtship and mating and with distinct physical characteristics. One is a fighter, the second is a “wingman” and the third is a cross-dresser. Read more...

Scientists take aim at disease-carrying “kissing bug”
(Marianne Meadahl, SFU News - November 16, 2015)
 An international research team, including scientists from Simon Fraser University, hopes its study of the vector Rhodnius prolixus—also known as the “kissing bug” and a major contributor to Chagas disease—will further the development of innovative insect control methods to curb its impact on humans. Read more...

New research opens door to understanding tonsil cancer


(SFU News - October 30, 2015)
 Researchers at Simon Fraser University and the BC Cancer Agency have developed a groundbreaking method to identify and separate stem cells that reside in the tonsils. Their research, which sheds new light on the fight against oral cancer, is published today in the journal Stem Cell Reports. Read more...

SFU co-leads national project to revive Coho salmon
(Diane Mar-Nicolle - October 29, 2015)
 Simon Fraser University scientist Willie Davidson will co-lead a four-year project that holds the promise of reviving British Columbia’s commercial Coho salmon fishery. The project will develop the genomics resources and tools required for better stock identification, improved fisheries management, a more effective hatchery system, and growth of the land-based Coho salmon aquaculture industry. Read more...

New professorship focuses on new treatments for autism
(Marianne Meadahl, SFU News - October 22, 2015)
Sam Doesburg, a neuroscientist and an expert in magnetoencephalographic (MEG) brain imaging, is the inaugural holder of the Callum Frost Professorship in Translational Research in Autism at Simon Fraser University. Read more...

Mammoths in Haida Gwaii?
(Diane Mar-Nicolle - October 19, 2015) Rolf Mathewes is senior author of a new research paper that focuses on the past environment during the second-to-last glacial event on Haida Gwaii, about 57,000 years ago. Read more...

SFU Mathematicians solve maple tree sap mystery
(Diane Mar-Nicolle - September 25, 2015)
Applied mathematics professor John Stockie is the lead author of a study released in the journal Royal Society Interface. The team includes fellow SFU post-doctoral mathematicians Maurizio Ceseri and Isabell Graf. The trio set out to develop a mathematical model that captures the phenomenon of sap exudation; Read more...  

Wired for laziness
(Diane Mar-Nicolle - September 10, 2015) Do you feel lazy? Most of us do when we choose to drive somewhere when we could have walked, or skip daily exercise to binge watch “Game of Thrones.” New research from Simon Fraser University professor Max Donelan and his team demonstrates that this inherent laziness extends to our subconscious nervous system. Read more...

New cancer-fighting funds to help patients with aggressive non-Hodgkin lymphoma
(Carol Thorbes, SFU News - August 27, 2015)
Half a million dollars in new funding is helping Simon Fraser University researcher Ryan Morin advance his efforts to help patients with non-Hodgkin lymphoma live longer with less pain, and potentially even be cured. Read more...

Petronas LNG terminal set in salmon's 'Grand Central Station'
(CBC News - August 7, 2015) A new study appears to support arguments by B.C. First Nations that the Petronas LNG project on the Skeena River could hurt salmon stocks. Simon Fraser University Professor Jonathan Moore's study looked at the genetics of juvenile salmon from Flora Bank, the area where the new LNG terminal is planned along the Skeena River. Read more...

SFU study finds fat accumulation in human skeletal muscles concerning
(Carol Thorbes, SFU News - July 28, 2015) 
Our efforts to battle the bulge and stay youthful aren’t futile but they are certainly compromised by a physiological process that undermines our mobility, according to a Simon Fraser University scientist. Read more...

The first "deep" image taken from SFU's new Trottier Observatory: the Pinwheel Galaxy
(Howard Trottier - July 24, 2015) An image of the Pinwheel Galaxy, also known as Messier 101, was shot over the course of three nights at the end of May 2015. This first "deep" image taken at the new Trottier Observatory was captured and processed by Professor Howard Trottier of the Department of Physics. Read more...

Earth to Oceans (E2O) Research Group creates a splash
Founding members (l to r): John Reynolds, Isabelle Côté, Jonathan Moore, Nick Dulvy; not shown, Wendy Palen

(Diane Mar-Nicolle - July 17, 2015) In the five years that the Earth to Oceans (E2O) collaboration has existed, it has arguably become one of the most dynamic and fruitful research groups within SFU’s Faculty of Science.  The passion of faculty members chosen for their outstanding reputation in research and teaching drives the E2O group in tackling pressing issues in conservation and ecology of aquatic ecosystems. Read more...

Temperature change can trigger Sudden Cardiac Death
(Diane Mar-Nicolle - July 7, 2015) Sudden death caused by cardiac arrhythmia can be triggered by changes in body temperature. This is the finding of SFU professor Peter Ruben and his collaborators, Mena Abdelsayed and Colin Peters, published today in the Journal of Physiology. The soccer player who drops dead in the middle of a game, or the infant who dies during sleep is often a victim of arrhythmia. Read more...

SFU natural hazards researcher among Canada’s top "explorers”
(SFU News - May 25, 2015
) Astronaut Chris Hadfield, environmentalist David Suzuki and John Clague, Simon Fraser University earth sciences professor: what do they have in common? Read more...

Dating techniques: Illuminating the past
(April 23, 2015) David Huntley (Emeritus Professor of Physics) and his SFU colleagues introduced a new method of optical dating in 1985. This groundbreaking discovery is highlighted in a recent Nature News & Views nod to the International Year of Light and Light-based Technologies as a technique that "revolutionized studies of events that occurred during the past 500,000 years."

Sugar key to cellular proteins’ protection and viability
(SFU News - March 16, 2015) A Simon Fraser University laboratory’s breakthrough in understanding how a specialized sugar regulates protein levels in our cells could generate new targets for therapies to treat diseases caused by improper protein regulation. Cancer and various neurodegenerative diseases are among these diseases. In the case of Alzheimer’s disease, the toxic forms of two proteins accumulate in our brains. Read more...

Canadian scientists have developed a technology to address isotope shortages
(NSERC News Release - February 19, 2015
) Canada’s hospitals are on the verge of having a local supply of isotopes for medical imaging thanks to a new development by an innovative team of researchers focused on preventing future isotope shortages. Read more...

SFU plays key role in new national hub for glycomics research
(SFU News - February 17, 2015) 
Simon Fraser University is playing a key role in the new Canadian Glycomics Network (GlycoNet) announced this month by Minister of Health Rona Ambrose with a commitment of $27.3 million in federal funding over five years. Glycomics, the study of the structure and function of carbohydrates (sugars) in biological systems, promises to deliver far-reaching solutions to human health problems such as influenza, genetic diseases and diabetes. Read more...

Canada would benefit if high seas fishing closed
(Vancouver Sun - February 12, 2015) Canada is one of the countries that stands to benefit if the high seas were closed to fishing. “We have large EEZ (exclusive economic zones) around both coasts,” SFU biologist Isabelle Côté said. “Given various assumptions, we would stand to gain in the ballpark of $100 million to $125 million.” In fact, most countries would benefit, while only a few would suffer, if the high seas were closed to fishing, according to a study co-authored by Côté. Read more...

Heart cells throb in SFU lab
(Diane Luckow, SFU News - February 12, 2015)
In the molecular cardiac physiology lab at Simon Fraser University are dozens of Petrie dishes filled with human heart cells, or cardiomyocytes, all beating in unison. Graduate students Elham Afshinmanesh and Sanam Shaffaattalab have created the cardiomyocytes from the skin of patients suffering from inherited heart arrhythmias—genetic mutations that cause irregular heartbeats that can be lethal. Read more...