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Astronomy / Space Science - Chemistry - 14.06.2022
Gaia mission sees strange stars in most detailed Milky Way survey to date
Gaia mission sees strange stars in most detailed Milky Way survey to date
The ESA Gaia mission has released its new treasure trove of data about our home galaxy. Astronomers - including Professor Conny Aerts from KU Leuven - describe strange 'starquakes', stellar DNA, asymmetric motions and other fascinating insights in this most detailed Milky Way survey to date. Gaia is ESA's mission to create the most accurate and complete multi-dimensional map of the Milky Way.

Life Sciences - 14.06.2022
Quick and Easy Biomonitoring in Living Tissue
A research team at KU Leuven (Belgium) has developed a new technique that allows researchers to easily quantify the concentration of calcium in living organisms over a long period of time. Up to now, this was only possible with more complex experimental setups. This simplified method can be adapted to other molecules and tissues, making it a useful instrument for translational research and the development of applications.

Life Sciences - 13.06.2022
The black box behind embryonic development
The black box behind embryonic development
Stem cell biologists identify how placenta cells are regulated DNA regulation is a critical process in a cell that allows it to fulfil its function. This process is key during pregnancy, when embryonic cells must develop into all cell types needed to form an embryo. An international team of researchers from KU Leuven, Babraham Institute, Radboud University, Ghent University and IMBA, have discovered that the first cell fate decision of embryonic development is regulated by a protein known as PRC2.

Health - Environment - 11.05.2022
You don’t cut down an old tree: KU Leuven study demonstrates connection between large urban trees and human health
Not every type of greenery in an urban environment has the same positive effect on people. One large tree with a robust crown has more impact than ten young trees. That is the conclusion of a large-scale study by KU Leuven that was published today in the influential journal Environmental Health Perspectives.

Life Sciences - Materials Science - 21.04.2022
Researchers from KU Leuven and UHasselt take important step towards development of biological dental enamel
To this day, cavities and damage to enamel are repaired by dentists with the help of synthetic filling materials. There is no natural alternative to this. A new 3D model with human dental stem cells could change this in the future. The results of the research led by KU Leuven Professor Hugo Vankelecom and Professors Annelies Bronckaers and Ivo Lambrichts from UHasselt have been published in Cellular and Molecular Life Sciences .

Career - 07.04.2022
Dire working conditions for Belgian platform workers
A new study finds that five of the largest platform companies in Belgium fail to offer fair working conditions. The Fairwork research project in Belgium,  at the Centre for Sociological Research at KU Leuven and in collaboration with the University of Oxford, rated the working conditions of Takeaway, Ring Twice, Deliveroo, Yoopies, and Top Help.

Career - Research Management - 07.04.2022
Four ERC Consolidator Grants for KU Leuven researchers
Four ERC Consolidator Grants for KU Leuven researchers
The European Research Council (ERC) has awarded its Consolidator Grants. Four KU Leuven researchers are among this year's recipients: bioscience engineer Rob Ameloot, theologist Christina Kreinecker, pediatric nephrologist Elena Levtchenko, and astronomer Jon Sundqvist.

Astronomy / Space Science - 02.03.2022
'Closest black hole' system found to contain no black hole
’Closest black hole’ system found to contain no black hole
In 2020 a team led by European Southern Observatory (ESO) astronomers reported the closest black hole to Earth, located just 1000 light-years away in the HR 6819 system. But the results of their study were contested by other researchers, including by an international team based at KU Leuven. In a paper published today, these two teams have united to report that there is in fact no black hole in HR 6819, which is instead a "vampire" two-star system in a rare and short-lived stage of its evolution.

Life Sciences - 10.02.2022
Analysis of 2,658 tumours sheds new light on mutations in cancer
A large-scale study conducted by KU Leuven and The Francis Crick Institute shows that 21% of tumours have double mutations, in which the exact same letter is mutated in both the maternal and paternal copy of your DNA. This is an observation that was not previously taken into account when analysing tumours but is important for future cancer research into the origin of mutations and their biological significance in the development of cancer.

Astronomy / Space Science - 01.02.2022
Even dying stars can still give birth to planets
Planets are usually not much older than the stars around which they revolve. Take the Sun: it was born 4.6 billion years ago, and not long after that, Earth came into the world. But KU Leuven astronomers have discovered that a completely different scenario is also possible. Even if they are near death, some types of stars can possibly still form planets.

Health - 01.02.2022
The eye as a window into heart disease
AI system can predict risk of heart attack based on retinal scan An international team of researchers have developed an AI system that can identify patients who are likely to have a heart attack over the next year. The system reads retinal scans that are already commonly used in eye clinics. Doctors have recognised that changes to the tiny blood vessels in the retina are indicators of broader vascular disease, including problems with the heart.

Health - Life Sciences - 24.12.2021
Our 10 most-read science news stories of 2021
From abdominal pain after eating certain foods to experimental hearing implants: in this overview, we present the most-read news items about research at KU Leuven in 2021. KU Leuven develops very potent antiviral against dengue 6 October Researchers have developed an inhibitor of the dengue virus. The antiviral molecule is effective against all known dengue variants and could be used for therapeutic and prevention purposes.

Politics - Computer Science - 09.12.2021
The identification of political ads on Facebook often goes wrong
The identification of political ads on Facebook often goes wrong
Researchers at KU Leuven (belonging to the imec-DistriNet research group) and New York University (Cybersecurity for Democracy) have demonstrated that on a global scale, Facebook misjudges up to 83 percent of ads that they or the researchers deemed political. In some cases, Facebook does not recognise them as political ads, while they often wrongfully label non-political ads as political.

Health - Social Sciences - 09.11.2021
COVID-19 - the next steps? Socio-economic consequences and lessons for the future
KU Leuven presents 7 reports that scrutinise various aspects of the COVID-19 pandemic What are the socio-economic and psychological consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic and the measures to control it?

Health - Pharmacology - 06.10.2021
KU Leuven develops very potent antiviral against dengue
KU Leuven develops very potent antiviral against dengue
Researchers at the KU Leuven Rega Institute and CD3 have developed an ultrapotent inhibitor of the dengue virus, which causes the tropical disease known as dengue.

Environment - 04.10.2021
The cooling effect of European forests mapped for the first time
The cooling effect of European forests mapped for the first time
A team of scientists from KU Leuven, UAntwerp and Ghent University have mapped the temperatures of all European forest tracts. The results show that the summer temperatures in certain forests can cool down by as much as 10°C compared to the surrounding area. This cooling function is important in the battle against climate change.

Life Sciences - Health - 15.09.2021
Coconut tree cloning breakthrough will help propagation and preservation
Coconut tree cloning breakthrough will help propagation and preservation
Coconut trees grow slowly and are difficult to clone. Scientists at KU Leuven and the Alliance multiplied seedlings faster and conserved coconut genetic resources for the long term. Coconut trees grow slowly and are difficult to clone. Scientists at KU Leuven and the Alliance have developed a method to multiply seedlings faster and conserve coconut genetic resources for the long term.

Pedagogy - Life Sciences - 30.08.2021
Brains are most amenable to reading development in the first two years of primary education
Brains are most amenable to reading development in the first two years of primary education
The regions that form the reading network in the brain mainly develop in the first two years of primary school. After that, the growth of these brain regions stabilises. This has been shown by a year-long study conducted by KU Leuven. Neurobiological differences in dyslexia are already present at pre-school age  The regions that form the reading network in the brain mainly develop in the first two years of primary school.

Life Sciences - 24.08.2021
What octopuses can teach us about our own brains
What octopuses can teach us about our own brains
KU Leuven researchers expose some surprising similarities with animals that are 600 million years of evolution removed from us. Although octopuses have been wandering a different evolutionary path for around 600 million years, the formation of their brain cells shows some surprising similarities with that of humans.

Pharmacology - Health - 23.07.2021
Important factor in transplant rejection identified
KU Leuven researchers have revealed the importance of a newly identified mechanism of kidney transplant rejection. These results could increase the chances of a successful transplantation in the future. Each year, about 500 people in our country undergo a kidney transplant. 15 to 20% of these patients experience rejection symptoms.
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