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News overview 2021


Seasons greetings from Science LinX
Posted on:22 December 2021

Season's greetings from Science LinX

Synthetic molecular motor performs real work
Posted on:21 December 2021

Researchers from University of Groningen with colleagues from the Freien Universität Berlin (Germany) show that a synthetic molecular machine can also perform work, by driving a chemical reaction.

A smart livestock farming solution
Posted on:14 December 2021

George Azzopardi, a computer scientist from the University of Groningen, is leading a team that has devised a methodology that can recognize Holstein cows in the milking station by the pattern of their coat using artificial intelligence. The long-term vision is to develop a system that can monitor Holstein cows continuously and anywhere on a farm.


Using mobile augmented reality games to develop key competences
Posted on:30 November 2021

Games that augment the physical world by embedding them with digital data. That is the goal of UMARG - Using Mobile Augmented Reality Games to develop key competences through learning about sustainable development, an Erasmus+ project carried out by ScienceLinX and the Institute for Science Education and Communicationz.

Science LinX newsletter December 2021
Posted on:30 November 2021

Science LinX newsletter for December 2021

PWS op school: adviesgesprekken met de steunpunten
Posted on:30 November 2021

Via de Scholierenacademie kunnen PWS-coördinatoren of -begeleiders een adviesgesprek aanvragen met een alfa/bèta/gamma steunpuntcoördinator

Inschrijving geopend voor Hersenolympiade in Groningen
Posted on:30 November 2021

Op 12 februari kunnen scholieren meedoen aan de Nederalndse voorronde van de internationale Hersenolympiade

Bouwen en meten met Science LinX op Let’s Gro
Posted on:23 November 2021

Forum Groningen stond in het weekend van 5, 6 en 7 november 2021 in het teken van Let’s Gro, het inspiratiefestival over de toekomst van Groningen. Ook Science LinX was van de partij.

Nanopores suitable for single-molecule identification and sequencing of complete proteins
Posted on:18 November 2021

Scientists at the University of Groningen have published two papers in short succession, in Nature Chemistry and in Nature Communications, in which they describe how to construct a proteosome on top of a nanopore, which can be used for protein identification at a single-molecule level by fingerprinting and – in the future – by sequencing.

A new way to fight antimicrobial resistance
Posted on:17 November 2021

During World Antimicrobial Awareness Week, the World Health Organization reminds the world that drugs to fight bacteria, viruses, fungi, or parasites can lose their effectiveness. Antimicrobial resistance has been a focus point for many researchers at the University of Groningen. Microbiologist Marjon de Vos is working on a novel approach to tackle the problem, based on ecology and evolution.

Opening van sterrenwacht Lauwersmeer
Posted on:04 November 2021

Op 30 oktober is in het Lauwersmeergebied de nieuwe sterrenwacht geopend van het Kapteyn Instituut voor sterrenkunde van de RUG.


Science LinX newsletter November 2021
Posted on:28 October 2021

Science LinX newsletter for November 2021

Trapping molecules to find new physics
Posted on:28 October 2021

The Standard Model of particle physics has been extremely successful in describing how the universe works. However, there are some things that it cannot explain. Physicists have, therefore, been looking for new physics in particle accelerators such as the Large Hadron Collider at CERN. At the University of Groningen, a different approach has been used: in contrast to smashing up matter at high energies, physicists wanted to study molecules that are brought to rest.

Ancient genes vital for dolphin survival
Posted on:28 October 2021

Ancient genes that predate the last ice age may be the key to survival, at least if you are a dolphin, according to new research led by the University of St Andrews and involving Michael Fontaine, who was working on this project while at the Groningen Institute for Evolutionary Life Sciences (GELIFES).

The secret of ultralight but stiff sandwich nanotubes
Posted on:25 October 2021

Modelling by materials scientists from the University of Groningen revealed how to design lightweight but very stiff porous materials.

Skin-inspired sensors show how our body moves
Posted on:19 October 2021

Scientists at the University of Groningen have created wearable, stitchable, and sensitive sensors that respond to pressure and can measure body position and movement, just like our skin. They could be used to measure disease progress in Parkinson’s disease, or sense joint movement in athletes.

Life in three words: run, fight, or cooperate
Posted on:15 October 2021

Biologists have long studied how behaviour can increase the fitness of animals, which is usually defined as their ability to pass on their genes to subsequent generations. In a new book that has been 10 years in the making, three biologists describe the many dimensions that shape the evolution of social behaviour.

Mysterious organism lacks genes that are vital to copying and distributing its DNA
Posted on:13 October 2021

Carpediemonas membranifera, a unicellular organism that lives on marine shorelines, misses genes that are vital to copying and distributing its DNA. Eelco Tromer, an evolutionary cell biologist at the University of Groningen, was part of the team that described this strange creature.

Reinventing chemistry: no lab coat required
Posted on:12 October 2021

A series of brand-new chemistry laboratories has been created on the top floor of the Linnaeusborg building at the Zernike Campus. This is where two new tenure track scientists will activate reactions to create molecules using only light or electrons, and will use new building blocks to create ’next generation’ sustainable materials.

Scholieren praten mee in Donordierdialoog
Posted on:07 October 2021

Mag je dieren gebruiken als kweekvat voor menselijke organen? Om deze vraag te bespreken is de Donordierdialoog opgezet.


Science LinX newsletter October 2021
Posted on:30 September 2021

Science LinX newsletter for October 2021

How a committed minority can change society
Posted on:29 September 2021

How do social conventions change? Robotic engineers and marketing scientists from the University of Groningen joined forces to study this phenomenon, combining online experiments and statistical analysis into a mathematical model that shows how a committed minority can influence the majority to overturn long-standing practices.

Finding the needles in a haystack of high-dimensional data sets
Posted on:23 September 2021

There is an urgent need to develop algorithms that can select subsets of features that are relevant and have high predictive powers. To address this issue, computer scientists at the University of Groningen developed a novel feature selection algorithm.

Finding new alloys just became simpler
Posted on:16 September 2021

The number of possible alloys is astronomical. Francesco Maresca, an engineer at the University of Groningen, developed a theoretical model that allows him to rapidly determine the strength of millions of different alloys at high temperatures. Experiments confirmed the model predictions.

Mini-colleges en meetactie rond adaptatie: Aanpassen of uitsterven?
Posted on:14 September 2021

Op woensdag 15 september vertellen boswachter Arjan Postma en prof. Dr. Martine Maan in Forum Groningen alles over de manier waarop dieren en planten zich aanpassen aan hun veranderende omgeving in het kader van de nieuwe meetactie van CurioUs.

Ranking apps on privacy
Posted on:03 September 2021

Intrusive apps can harvest data which they can then sell. That is why University of Groningen computer scientist Fadi Mohsen and his colleagues have developed an algorithm that ranks similar apps on privacy scores.


Science LinX newsletter September 2021
Posted on:01 September 2021

Science LinX newsletter for September 2021

Rapid measurement of vitamin concentration with nanopores
Posted on:26 August 2021

Scientists at the University of Groningen have developed a nanopore system that can measure the concentration of thiamine (vitamin B1) in urine in less than a minute by using an engineered thiamine binding protein. This system should also work with other bodily fluids such as sweat, and can be adapted to measure other molecules that are important for good health. Eventually, this could lead to a wearable device to measure important metabolites. A paper describing the system was published in the journal Angewandte Chemie on 14 August.

Docenten gezocht voor testen STEAM Materialen & Workshop
Posted on:25 August 2021

Hoe geef je leerlingen in het VO de 21 e eeuwse vaardigheden mee die ze nodig hebben, zoals probleemoplossend vermogen, communicatie en kritische en creatief denken? Twee workshops helpen docenten hierbij.


Artificial Intelligence learns better when distracted
Posted on:27 July 2021

Computer scientists from the Netherlands and Spain have now determined how a deep learning system well suited for image recognition learns to recognize its surroundings. They were able to simplify the learning process by forcing the system’s focus toward secondary characteristics.

'Building molecules can be art'
Posted on:13 July 2021

Crenarchaeol is a large, closed-loop lipid that is present in the membranes of ammonium-oxidizing archaea, a unicellular life form that exists ubiquitously in the oceans. Organic chemists from the University of Groningen have discovered that the proposed structure for the molecule was largely, but not entirely, correct.

Artificial Intelligence provides faster diagnosis for debilitating blistering disease
Posted on:08 July 2021

Scientists at the University of Groningen have trained an Artificial Intelligence system to recognize a specific pattern in skin biopsies of patients with the blistering disease epidermolysis bullosa acquisita. The new system is easy to use and is better than most doctors in making the diagnosis.


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New technique reveals switches in RNA
Posted on:22 February 2021

Scientists have developed a method to visualize and quantify alternative structures of RNA molecules. These alternative RNA ‘shapes’ can have important functional relevance in viruses and bacteria.

New insight into protein structures that could treat Huntington’s disease
Posted on:11 February 2021

In Huntington’s disease, a faulty protein aggregates in brain cells and eventually kills them. Such protein aggregates could, in principle, be prevented with a heat shock protein. However, it is not well known how these proteins interact with the Huntington’s disease protein. New research by Patrick van der Wel (University of Groningen, the Netherlands) and colleagues at the University of Texas explains how they work.

Evidence for substance on liquid-gas boundary on exoplanet WASP-31b
Posted on:03 February 2021

One of the properties that make a planet suitable for life is the presence of a weather system. Exoplanets are too far away to directly observe this, but astronomers can search for substances in the atmosphere that make a weather system possible. Researchers from SRON Netherlands Institute for Space Research and the University of Groningen have now found evidence on exoplanet WASP-31b for chromium hydride, which at the corresponding temperature and pressure is on the boundary between liquid and gas.


Science LinX newsletter February 2021
Posted on:28 January 2021

Science LinX newsletter for February 2021

The surprises of colour evolution
Posted on:25 January 2021

The evolutionary interaction between insects and plants has created complex dependencies that can have surprising outcomes. Casper van der Kooi, a biologist at the University of Groningen, uses an interdisciplinary approach to analyse the interaction between pollinators and flowers. In January, he was first author of two review articles on this topic.

With a little help from their friends, older birds breed successfully
Posted on:19 January 2021

The Seychelles warbler is a cooperatively breeding bird species, meaning that parents often receive help from other birds when raising their offspring. A study led by biologists from the University of Groningen shows that the offspring of older females have better prospects when they are surrounded by helpers.

Physical virology shows the dynamics of virus reproduction
Posted on:14 January 2021

New physics-based technologies allow scientists to study the dynamics of viruses and may eventually lead to new treatments. In his role as physical virologist, Wouter Roos, a physicist at the University of Groningen, together with two longtime colleagues, has written a review article on these new technologies, which was published in Nature Reviews Physics on 12 January.

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