CAHNR in the news

newspaper readersMedicine & Science in Sports & Exercise released a collection of scientific pronouncements by the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM). It is called Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans, 2nd Edition, and Distinguished Professor Linda Pescatello was the lead author on the hypertension paper and co-authors on several others. Pescatello is on the faculty of kinesiology. See also Sports Medicine Bulletin.

UConn Today reported on the progress of birch “swing tree” seedlings being grown by Professor Mark Brand. The trees were started from female catkins that Brand, a plant science and landscape architecture faculty member, collected from the dying tree.

Philly Voice described the findings of a National Trainers’ Athletic Association study regarding sudden death in youth sports. Co-authors included student Brad Endres, Assistant Professor in Residence Rebecca Stearns, Yuri Hosokawa, Assistant Research Professor Robert Huggins and Professor Douglas Casa, who were or are part of the Korey Stringer Institute in kinesiology. The research is published in the Journal of Athletic Training. See also Athletic Business. Continue reading

Meet graduate student Heidi Karner

Heidi Karner
Heidi Karner

As a registered dietitian and master’s student in the Department of Allied Health Sciences Health Promotion Sciences Program, Heidi Karner assembled a collaborative team to address nutritional health in the community of Windsor. Focusing on the Sage Park Middle School, she brought together Windsor Public Schools, Foodshare’s Windsor Hunger Action Team and UConn with the goals of increasing fruit and vegetable consumption, expanding participation in a breakfast program and reducing food insecurity. Karner continues to help provide people with nutritional guidance and ways to improve their behaviors and dietary choices to live long and healthy lives. Here is what she said in an interview about her work.

Where did you study as an undergraduate?

UConn.

What was your major?

The Coordinated Dietetics Program in the Department of Allied Health Sciences.

Why did you decide to go to graduate school?

Because I wanted to learn more about how to better promote health among my patient population. More specifically, I knew that this program had a heavy emphasis on health psychology and I was interested in learning more about how to encourage lasting behavior change in the people that I work with. Continue reading

Scientist studies effects of land use and climate change on watersheds

Lauren Koenig 02
Lauren Koenig

Rivers and streams cover only about half a percent of the Earth’s land surface, but they play a substantial role in sustaining life on the planet. In addition to supporting complex food webs, strengthening biodiversity and maintaining water quality, river networks are a key participant in the global cycling of carbon.

As atmospheric carbon dioxide increases, global temperatures rise and lands adjacent to watersheds change or are repurposed, scientists are uncertain of the impacts on stream and river ecosystems. To start understanding the effects, scientists like Lauren Koenig, a postdoctoral research associate in the Department of Natural Resources and the Environment (NRE) says we need to first learn more about how rivers and streams transport, transform and store carbon.

“We are specifically focused on primary production and respiration,” says Koenig. “Just like you and I are breathing, rivers do that, too. Rivers and streams create and respire organic carbon. It’s part of a collection of processes we call metabolism. We want to know how they maintain that function to understand the ways climate change and land use changes affect those processes.”

Part of Koenig’s research relies on statistical analysis and computer modeling to create computer-generated river networks. By compiling information about carbon and oxygen content, water temperature and barometric pressure from sites throughout a watershed, she merges these data into a detailed map. From there, she can apply specific modifications, such as raising the temperature of the water, and determine the probable effects to entire fluvial network. Continue reading