From Death Valley to Africa, and even in our own backyard, UNLV faculty and students are making new discoveries, solving critical problems, and finding ways to help us better understand ourselves and the world around us.
Below are stories that highlight research and discovery at UNLV that have made news in 2012.
Badwater Yields Good Science
In a basin named Badwater on the edge of Death Valley National Park, UNLV microbiologist Dennis Bazylinski found a new magnetic bacteria with amazing biotech potential.
Blame It on the Rain
A study by UNLV geoscientist Matt Lachniet links climate change to the fate of Mesoamerican civilizations. Using stalagmites from a cave in Southern Mexico, he was able to track rainfall for the last 2,400 years for a region that includes most of Mexico and parts of the American Southwest, including Southern Nevada.
How Honey Made us Human
Anthropology professor Alyssa Crittenden says that honey played a big role in human evolution by providing critical energy to fuel the enlarging human brain. She is one of the first to champion the importance of honey, piecing together historical info and her own experiences studying among a hunter-gatherer tribe in Tanzania.
New Life in Death Valley
A pair of UNLV graduate students were the first to discover and verify a new scorpion species in Death Valley. Matthew Graham picked up the scorpion during a routine survey of Death Valley's Inyo Mountains as part of scheduled work for the National Park Service. The seemingly subterranean species, verified by fellow student Michael Webber, is one of the smallest species ever discovered in North America.
Quagga Mussel Quandary
The fight to control invasive quagga mussels in Lake Mead continues for community health sciences researcher David Wong. He has turned Western waters into his personal laboratory, testing mud levels, stirring up chemical solutions, and introducing new fish species - all in attempt to prevent other waterways from reaching Lake Mead's fate.
The Business of Bacteria
Microbiology professors are hard at work analyzing bacteria that help us, hurt us, and could contribute to better biofuels and healthier bee colonies. Bacteria that live on (and in) our bodies, in hot springs, on poker chips, and even in space.
Learn about UNLV news as it happens at UNLV In the News