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News from the Media

UMass Testing Mosquitos for National Science Foundation
June 18, 2018

The University of Massachusetts Amherst’s Laboratory of Medical Zoology (LMZ), better known for its national tick-borne disease testing service, has begun mosquito testing with the arrival of 15,000 vials of mosquitoes collected from 47 sites across the continent as part of National Science Foundation’s National Ecological Observatory Network (NEON) project, says microbiologist and LMZ director Stephen Rich. (WFXTV-25, News Office 6/6/18)

Dual-use Solar Panels and Crops Story Notes UMass Pilot Program
June 11, 2018

A story about dual-use farms, where crops are planted around and under solar panels, notes that one pilot program at UMass Amherst grows a variety of plants, including kale, peppers, beans, cilantro and tomatoes, below solar panels elevated between 7.5 feet and 9 feet above the ground. (Scientific American 6/6/18)

UMass Research: Common Antimicrobial Ingredient Linked to Bowel Cancer
May 31, 2018

A large research team led by senior author Guodong Zhang at the University of Massachusetts Amherst reports that the antimicrobial ingredient triclosan, found in hand soaps and toothpastes among other products, could have adverse effects on colonic inflammation and colon cancer by altering gut microbiota, the microbes found in our intestines. (Jordan Times 7/2/18; Sky Chronicle 6/11/18; Medicalnewser 6/10/18; ChemicalWatch 6/7/18;, Science and Technology Reserach News, Health Care Purchasing News 6/4/18;  Salon 6/3/18, Minneapolis Star Tribune, LA Times, Popular Science,, CBS Boston, The Patch 5/31/18, Daily Mail [UK],  Stamford Advocate [The Conversation] 5/30/18;,,,, 5/31/18; News Office Release)

UMass Amherst is Ground Zero for Tick Research
May 26, 2018

Stephen M. Rich, microbiology and director of the Laboratory of Medical Zoology and the Tick Testing Lab, is quoted in an article highlighting the dangers of tick bites. UMass Amherst, the report says, “is ground zero for tick research. Every week, thousands of people from across the country send ticks to its TickReport program to be tested for diseases." (CNN 5/26/18)

A Serious Tick Season is Here, Just Like Always, Professor Rich Comments
May 15, 2018

Prof. Stephen Rich, a microbiologist at UMass-Amherst and the director of its Laboratory of Medical Zoology, says there’s no such thing as a light tick season. They’re all bad. (The Sun Chronicle 5/14/18)

Using Biodiversity to Weather a Changing World, UMass Weighs In
May 9, 2018

UMass extension educator and “Fruit Advisor,” Jon Clements advises commercial fruit growers across the state on the best practices to cultivate their crop and turn a profit against the reality of a changing climate. (Gazette 5/9/18)

Tens of Thousands Likely to Get Tick-borne Disease in MA This Year
May 8, 2018

A recent report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) warns of a recent surge of tick-borne disease incidence in the United States said microbiology professor Stephen Rich, director of the Laboratory of Medical Zoology (LMZ) at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. A new $100,000 grant from the state’s public health department, using CDC funding, will help to subsidize the cost of tick testing for Massachusetts residents through a contract with the LMZ. ( Berkshire Eagle, Keene Sentinel [via Cape Cod Times], 5/21/18;  WFXT-TV 25, WPRI-TV 12, Medicine News Line, 5/9/18;, WWLP-TV 22, 5/8/18; News Office; Globe 5/7/18)

Richard Peltier Examines Causes of Air Pollution and Human Health Impacts
May 7, 2018

Richard Peltier, UMass Amherst, environmental health sciences, examines the causes of air pollution and its adverse impact on human health. (The Conversation, 5/7/18)

UMass Amherst Food Scientists Discover How Obesity Could be Linked to Colon Cancer
April 30, 2018

University of Massachusetts Amherst researchers have identified an enzyme that might be responsible for increased colon inflammation in obese people — and they’re hoping that, by inhibiting it, they might someday prevent colon cancer, said Guodong Zhang, a food science professor at UMass Amherst. (Globe New China 4/30/18)

Quebec Cree Camp Hosts UMass Students
April 30, 2018

UMass professor Paul K. Barten, environmental conservation, takes annual trip with students to the James Bay region of Quebec where they visit a Cree culture camp. “The Cree in particular, how self-reliant and resourceful they are, by any standard measure it defines what conservation and sustainability really is,” Barten says. (CBC [Canada] 4/27/18)