NC State University

Branford Marsalis, Arlie Petters, and Juliana Makuchi Nfah-Abenyi join the State of Things for the roundtable conversation.
Laura Lee

On this week’s roundtable, a jazz great, a leading string theory mathematician and an accomplished writer share their diverse perspectives on the latest headlines. They’ll discuss a range of issues from the latest Middle East update to the challenges facing minorities in higher education. 

Hurricane Irene
nasa.gov

The 2013 Atlantic storm season has been milder than expected so far. Only eight named storms have formed by the season's midpoint.  The latest -- Humberto -- is the first hurricane to form.

Debra Saunders-White
NC Central University

College students began meeting their new roommates and unpacking boxes last week at several of the large universities in the Triangle and Triad. This year, the freshmen won’t be the only new faces on campus.

Carol Folt began her first official day on the job as chancellor at UNC-Chapel Hill a little over a month and a half ago. She replaced Holden Thorp, who is now the provost at Washington University in Saint Louis. Folt comes to Carolina from Dartmouth. She’s the first woman to lead UNC-Chapel Hill.

The NSA is creating a partnership with N.C. State.
nsa.gov

N.C. State is partnering with the National Security Agency to launch a data-collecting research lab. 

The school announced this morning it won a $60 million contract to create the facility on the university's Centennial Campus.  Terri Lomax is vice chancellor for research, innovation and economic development at N.C. State.  She says the lab is meant to answer questions about how to better collect, sort and store massive amounts of computer data.

N.C. State researchers are using North Carolina's tomato plants as a case study to understand how Salmonella affects crops.
USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service

Researchers at North Carolina State University are searching for Salmonella in North Carolina's tomato crops.  The bacteria causes salmonellosis, a disease that can range from uncomfortable to deadly, and tomatoes in Florida and Virginia have been the sources of outbreaks. Despite North Carolina's close proximity and similar climate, local tomatoes have been safe from the pathogen. A team of scientists from N.C. State's College of Agriculture and Life Sciences is investigating why.

Stephen Reynolds is an astrophysicist at North Carolina State University.
http://www.physics.ncsu.edu/people/faculty_reynolds.html

In the age of the Internet, it sometimes seems as though no questions remain unanswered. But for Stephen Reynolds, the mystery is only beginning.

Potato late blight lesion, a fungus-like pathogen on a plant.
Jean Ristaino, NC State University

New research reveals the disease that wiped out millions of potatoes and led to widespread famine in Ireland is still around, and it’s more virulent than ever.  A new study led by NC State University plant pathologist Jean Ristaino investigates the history of the fungus-like organism that caused the Irish potato famine and how its genome has evolved since it first showed up in Ireland in the 1800’s.

Captain America's Shield
Pop Culture Geek/Flickr / creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/deed.en

When you watch an X-men movie or read a Captain America comic, you can find a new way to look at material science. Superhero comics can be just as much science as they are magic.

Hofmann Forest
Historical State, NCSU Libraries

If you’re in the market for a large piece of land near the coast – say a quarter of the size of Wake County - then you really have only one option. 80,000 acres… Pristine coastal pine forest… Abundant wildlife. And what a location! Adjacent to the Croatan National Forest, just a stone’s throw from the beach!

There’s only one problem.

The German cockroach
Sarah Camp / Flickr Creative Commons

Researchers at N.C. State are trying to pinpoint mutations that have allowed some cockroaches to avoid sugar-based insecticides. 

Many household roach baits use sugars to lure the insects toward the poison.  But recent studies have shown some German cockroaches have adapted to be genetically averse to glucose and therefore the insecticides within the bait. 

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