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Women First

Much of Emily Jacobs’ research focuses on how sex hormones — estrogen, progesterone, testosterone — affect the brain. Where are they acting? On what circuits? And over what time span?

She studies these changes in both men and women, but Jacobs, a neuroscientist and a professor of psychological and brain sciences, is keenly aware that the female brain has, historically, been overlooked.

Making Prosthetics More Lifelike

David Brockman, a retired CalFire captain and avid outdoorsman, built a deck in the backyard of his home last year, without the use of his dominant right hand, which he lost in an accident. The prosthetic hand he used instead was a crude but functional steel hook-and-harness device.

Brockman has tried other artificial limbs, including a high-tech prosthesis called a myoelectric. It looks like a hand and works by using electrical signals from muscles in the forearm. But that one just didn’t work for him.

UC Noyce Initiative Researchers Recognized in Honor of International Women's Day

In honor of International Women’s Day on March 8, the University of California, Davis, College of Engineering recognized some key female engineers  in recognition for how they inspire inclusion in engineering. Among those recognized were two researchers from the UC Noyce Initiative: Child Family Professor in Engineering Chen-Nee Chuah and Associate Professor Marina Radulaski.

The following are excerpts from the Q&A featuring Chuah and Radulaski:

UC Noyce Initiative Researcher Named Chancellor's Fellow

Congratulations to UC Noyce Initiative researcher Brittany Dugger, Ph.D. for being named one of the 2024 Chancellor's Fellows for UC Davis. Dugger was one of nine early career academics who were given this title in recognition of doing exemplary work.

“These outstanding faculty members are some of our brightest and most promising scholars,” UC Davis Chancellor Gary S. May said. “I know they will continue to impress and shine a light on the groundbreaking work happening here at UC Davis. I expect this recognition and support will help propel them to even greater heights.”

UC Noyce Initiative Advances Digital Innovation 

Learning more about women's brains, protecting the grid from cyberattacks, exploring the capacity of quantum computing — these are transformational research projects being pursued because of a new, five-campus, University of California consortium called The UC Noyce Initiative. 

A New Vision for Data Security

In mid-2022, Instagram began asking an assortment of its users to complete a survey about their race, ethnicity and gender. By the end of the year, a huge number of people had filled out the survey, which was part of a new effort to ensure that the social media platform was fair and inclusive.

Behind the scenes, Professor Dawn Song, PhD, an expert in computer security and privacy, was helping ensure that the sensitive data was staying safe while still enabling researchers to analyze it.

Fundamental Physics to Build Computers of the Future

When he was 12 years old, Hartmut Haeffner got his first computer— a Commodore 64. On the C64, Haeffner learned to program, first for fun and then as a job, using the computer to track sporting events in his native Germany. He was fascinated with both what the computer could do, and the underlying technology that made it possible.

When Data Science Meets Medicine

As a child, Bin Yu never dreamed she’d go to college. She grew up in China during the Cultural Revolution, when nearly all of the country’s institutions of higher learning were closed. But in third grade, a cousin gave Yu a math book. She fell in love with the structured way of thinking and the concrete answers found in the textbook.

Novel brain implant helps paralyzed woman speak using a digital avatar

Emerging speech neuroprostheses may offer a way to communicate for people who are unable to speak due to paralysis or disease, but fast, high-performance decoding has not yet been demonstrated. Now, transformative new work by researchers at UCSF and UC Berkeley shows that more natural speech decoding is possible using the latest advances in artificial intelligence.