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Front Page News at Indiana University


Kiplinger's ranks IU as a 'best value,' particularly for Indiana residents
Glaucoma can cause blindness with little warning
The Indiana University Dance Theater presents 'The Legacy of Graham'
Book by IU faculty member examines aging and place in America
IU symposium, film series to highlight overlooked portion of German history
IU Bloomington Scoreboard


Kiplinger's ranks IU as a 'best value,' particularly for Indiana residents -- Indiana University moved into the top 30 for the first time in Kiplinger's Personal Finance magazine's rankings of the "100 Best Values in Public Colleges." IU, which ranks 28th overall, was third among Big Ten universities. The rankings, which recognize public colleges and universities that "deliver strong academics at affordable prices," will appear in the magazine's February issue hitting newsstands Jan. 5. They also are online at https://www.kiplinger.com/. According to Jane Bennett Clark, Kiplinger's senior associate editor, IU's rise in the rankings this year resulted in part from improved measures of academic quality, including scores on entrance exams and retention and graduation rates. Read the complete story.

Glaucoma can cause blindness with little warning -- A ringing alarm clock signaled the loss of sight for Indianapolis entertainer Jimmy Gilford. "I was lying on my back, and I could not see the clock when the alarm went off. When I sat up, I could see it. When I laid back down, I still couldn't see it," Gilford said. Gilford was soon diagnosed with glaucoma -- and had already lost vision in his right eye because of the disease. "I never had a pain or anything, and I didn't notice any change in my sight," Gilford said. Dr. Louis B. Cantor, chairman of the Department of Ophthalmology at the Eugene and Marilyn Glick Eye Institute at the Indiana University School of Medicine, urges adults to learn about the disease and its risk factors during "Glaucoma Month," observed in January by the American Academy of Ophthalmology. Read the complete story.

The Indiana University Dance Theater presents 'The Legacy of Graham' -- Indiana University dancers will bring history to life during "The Legacy of Graham," the annual guest artist/faculty concert presented by the IU Dance Theater. Produced by the Department of Kinesiology and the Department of Theatre and Drama, the concert will feature modern dance pioneer Martha Graham's Panorama, Paul Taylor's Aureole and 3 Epitaphs as well as works by faculty from the Department of Kinesiology and Department of African American and African Diaspora Studies. Read the complete story.

Book by IU faculty member examines aging and place in America -- With the first of the Baby Boom generation well into midlife, the number of Americans at or nearing retirement age is both unprecedented and expanding, notes Indiana University faculty member Phil Stafford in his recently published book Elderburbia: Aging with a Sense of Place in America. Stafford, an adjunct professor in the IU Bloomington Department of Anthropology and director of the Indiana Institute on Disability and Community's Center on Aging and Community, writes that, with so much emphasis being given to helping retirees maintain good health and active lifestyles, it also is important to think about where they live and how to make those homes and communities elder-friendly. Read the complete story.

IU symposium, film series to highlight overlooked portion of German history -- Indiana University Bloomington will present a symposium and film series in honor of the East German Cinema of the DEFA Studios, bringing to light a group of overlooked films made between 1988-1994 that reflect life surrounding the toppling of the Berlin Wall in 1989. "WENDE FLICKS -- Last Films from East Germany," curated by the University of Massachusetts DEFA Film Library, will play at the Buskirk-Chumley Theater from Jan. 17-March 28 and on the IU Bloomington campus in the Fine Arts Auditorium through April 18. Recently furnished with English subtitles, the "WENDE FLICKS" will be free and open to the public. Read the complete story.


Indiana University Bloomington Scoreboard

Results from Sunday, Jan. 3:
Women's Basketball: Despite a tough defensive effort, the Indiana women's basketball team fell to No. 16/24 Michigan State, 53-44, in Assembly Hall. Read the game notes.

Schedule for Wednesday, Jan 6:
Men's Basketball: Ohio State, 8:30 p.m., Columbus, Ohio

Schedule for Thursday, Jan. 7:
Women's Basketball: Illinois, 7 p.m., Bloomington, Ind.


IU in the news

Research reveals rapid mutation rate of plant genomes
CORDIS News, Jan. 5 -- New research published in the journal Science describes how a research team studied the entire genome sequence of a plant over 30 generations to understand the speed at which genetic mutations occur in plants. The findings shed new light on how plants become resistant to herbicides and could aid efforts to develop plants that are resistant to drought, for example. 'While the long-term effects of genome mutations are quite well understood, we did not know how often new mutations arise in the first place,' said Dr Detlef Weigel, a director at the Max Planck Institute for Developmental Biology in Germany, who led the research along with colleagues at Indiana University in the US. Comparing the genomes of plant and animal species is common scientific practice now, but the research team took this a stage further by studying all the genetic changes in five varieties of the flowering plant Arabidopsis thaliana (commonly known as mouse ear cress) over 30 generations. Their goal was to identify the differences between the genome of the final generation and the genome of the first generation. The research found that over several years 20 DNA building blocks (also called base pairs) had mutated in each of the 5 varieties of Arabidopsis. 'The probability that any letter of the genome changes in a single generation is thus about 1 in 140 million,' explained Professor Michael Lynch of Indiana University. Full story.

Spaced-out vaccinations help kids with egg allergies
Indianapolis Star, Jan. 3 -- For a small percentage of parents, the recommendation that all children receive the H1N1 vaccine presents a dilemma. On the one hand, they want to protect their child against the new influenza, which has killed an estimated 10,000 people in the United States. On the other, they fear the vaccine grown in eggs could trigger a deadly allergy attack. Now, allergists at Riley Hospital for Children offer a way for children who are allergic to eggs to have their H1N1 vaccine and peace of mind, too. Depending on how severe the child's allergy is, the doctors administer the vaccine over several hours, watching the child for any sign of an adverse reaction. This so-called desensitization technique is also used to deliver seasonal flu vaccine to children with egg allergies. "Sometimes if you give the whole thing, you might precipitate an allergic reaction, but if you creep up on the immune system, you can get the outcome that you want," said Dr. Frederick Leickly, a professor of clinical pediatrics at the Indiana University School of Medicine. Full story.

Remains of historic S. Ind. mill possibly found
Associated Press, Jan. 3 -- Archaeologists using ground-penetrating radar may have found the ruins of a grain mill owned by Revolutionary War figure George Rogers Clark on a bluff overlooking the Ohio River city named after him. November's discovery left the team of researchers excited, said Cheryl Munson, an Indiana University archaeologist overseeing the high-tech imaging and excavations in a 280-acre historic district along Clarksville's riverfront. She said the team picked up reflections from ground-penetrating radar that indicated a manmade foundation composed of stone or brick lies beneath the site. Full story.

NASA's Kepler finds its first five planets - an odd assortment
Christian Science Monitor, Jan. 4 -- NASA's planet-hunting telescope Kepler has bagged its first quarry: five new planets Neptune's size and larger, including one with the density of Styrofoam, making it one of the lightest planets yet found. n addition to the new planets, Kepler results suggest that the light output from two-thirds of some 43,000 sun-like stars in its field of view is virtually as stable as the sun's output. That seemingly obscure observation suggests that the majority of stars potentially are as hospitable to life as Earth's sun, assuming there was an Earth-like planet orbiting at the right distance from the star. "If most stars are quiescent, that increases the havens for life in the universe," says astronomer Caty Pilachowski of Indiana University. The reason: Periodic strong outbursts of radiation from a star could sterilize a planet's surface, even if the planet orbited the star in the so-called habitable zone. That zone represents distances where any water on a planet's surface would receive just enough heat to remain liquid and stable on the planet's surface. Quiescent stars mean "we're more likely to have habitats where life can evolve and increases our chances of finding that life down the road," she says. Full story.


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