Duke Digest – March 31, 2014

In Today’s Issue:

  • Young Alumni/DPPN to Host Career Panel at Duke in Washington Tonight
  • President Brodhead Asks NC Members to Support Research and Education in FY15
  • RESEARCH: Engineering Team Develops Catheter Innovation to Reduce Infection
  • Duke Faculty Evaluate, Take Lessons from Emerging Carbon Trading Markets
  • Duke Engineers Develop Lens Design to Drastically Improve Kidney Stone Treatment
  • OPINION: How Supreme Court Ruling Indicates Move Toward Equal Protection 
  • Why Scientific Research Needs Public and Private Support
  • “Jewel” of Ocean Research Considered for Closure in FY15 Budget Proposal
  • Duke in Washington Update: Faculty, Staff and Athletics Highlight Recent University Visits to DC
  • San Antonio Mayor, Julian Castro, to Speak at Duke April 1
  • Duke Offers Admission to 2,697 High School Seniors

YOUNG ALUMNI/DPPN TO HOST CAREER PANEL AT DUKE IN WASHINGTON ON MARCH 31
The Duke Young Alumni Committee and the Duke Politics and Policy Network will host “How to get the Most Out of Your Twenties,” featuring a panel of alumni in political and policy related careers discussing how they made the most of their twenties to get where they are today. The panel will be held on Monday, March 31 at 7 p.m. at the Duke in Washington Office. RSVP here.

PRESIDENT BRODHEAD ASKS NC MEMBERS TO SUPPORT RESEARCH AND EDUCATION IN FY15
Duke President Richard Brodhead sent letters on March 26 to Senators Richard Burr and Kay Hagan and Representatives G.K. Butterfield and David Price, urging them to support programs of interest to the university during the FY15 appropriations process.  The letters outline the importance of research funding and federal student aid programs to Duke, to the state of North Carolina, and to the nation as a whole.

“As we continue to deal with constrained budgets, it is important to maximize resources by providing sustained strategic investments in key areas that will promote economic growth. Our nation’s research enterprise is a powerful economic driver that provides both technological advances that shape our lives, and the highly skilled workforce to keep us competitive on a global scale.”

Read More:
FY15 Appropriations Letter – Senator Burr (pdf)
FY15 Appropriations Letter – Senator Hagan (pdf)
FY15 Appropriations Letter – Rep. Butterfield (pdf)
FY15 Appropriations Letter – Rep. Price (pdf)

RESEARCH: ENGINEERING TEAM DEVELOPS CATHETER INNOVATION TO REDUCE INFECTION
Duke University engineers have developed a new urinary catheter design that can eliminate nearly all of the hard-to-kill biofilm, which cause almost half of all infections from catheter use, from the catheter’s walls. Instead of focusing on expensive antibacterial coatings, the researchers use physical deformation to knock the infectious film from its moorings. Vrad Levering, a PhD student in biomedical engineering, said the general concept has potential applications for a wide range of industries currently plagued by biofilms, such as dairy processing, petroleum transport, city drinking water and heat exchangers. The research was supported by the National Science Foundation, the Office of Naval Research, and National Institutes of Health Training Grant.

Read More:
Catheter Innovation Destroys Dangerous Biofilms (pratt.duke.edu)

DUKE FACULTY EVALUATE, TAKE LESSONS FROM EMERGING CARBON TRADING MARKETS
Although markets for trading carbon emission credits to reduce greenhouse gas emissions have stalled in United States federal policy-making, carbon markets are emerging at the state level within the U.S. and around the world, teaching us more about what does and doesn’t work.

In a Policy Forum article in the March 21 edition of Science magazine, Duke University’s Richard Newell, William Pizer and Daniel Raimi discuss the key lessons from a decade of experience with carbon markets. They also discuss what it might take for these markets to develop and possibly link together in the coming years and decades.

Read More:
Carbon Market Lessons and Global Policy Outlook (sciencemag.org)

DUKE ENGINEERS DEVELOP LENS DESIGN TO DRASTICALLY IMPROVE KIDNEY STONE TREATMENT
Duke engineers have devised a way to improve the efficiency of lithotripsy — the demolition of kidney stones using focused shock waves. Using grants from the National Institutes of Health, engineers, urologic surgeons and mathematicians from  UNC-Chapel, have developed a lens with a groove near the perimeter of the backside of the lens and change its geometry. This realigned the device’s focal point and optimized the pressure distribution with a broad focal width and lower peak pressure. Pei Zhong, the Anderson-Rupp Professor of Mechanical Engineering and Materials Science, hopes this will demonstrate that “effective, interactive collaboration between academia and industry can really improve the design of lithotripters that will benefit millions of stone patients worldwide.”

Read More:
New Lens Design Drastically Improves Kidney Stone Treatment (pratt.duke.edu)

OPINION: HOW SUPREME COURT RULING INDICATES MOVE TOWARD EQUAL PROTECTION 
Writing in the New York Times, “Room for Debate” Neil Seigel, the David W. Ichel Professor of Law and professor of political science, writes, “by stressing state authority to regulate marriage and not expressly applying heightened scrutiny to discrimination against gay people, the [United States v. Windsor] decision signaled that the justices were not yet prepared to require states to allow same-sex marriage… The court’s opinion in Windsor is a way station, and it hints at the next stops.”

Read More:
Halting Progress Toward Protection (NY Times)

WHY SCIENTIFIC RESEARCH NEEDS PUBLIC AND PRIVATE SUPPORT
John Aldrich, Duke political science professor and president of the American Political Science Association, writes in a guest post in the Washington Post:
“[P]hilanthropy has long been an important, sometimes even the only, supporter of academic research. What is different is that politics is infecting the government’s support of science, so every source of funding is now viewed with “gratitude and trepidation.” What is needed is a partnership, whereby the federal government supports basic research, private philanthropies support the resulting applications. And this should be true across the board, in the sciences, the social sciences, and the humanities.”

Read More:
Why Scientific Research Needs Public and Private Support (WashingtonPost)

BEAUFORT OCEAN RESEARCH LAB CONSIDERED FOR CLOSURE IN FY15 BUDGET PROPOSAL
For over a hundred years, Pivers Island has been home to a federal ocean science laboratory. Surrounded by three university labs, it’s one of a handful of oceanography hubs in the nation and the only government research center between New Jersey and Miami studying Atlantic fish populations. In his FY15 budget proposal, President Obama has targetted the lab for closure, citing the facilities need for infrastructure repairs and maintenance that exceed the agency’s budget. The proposal has been met with resistance from the university community and the North Carolina delegation.

Mike Schoenfeld, Duke’s vice president for public affairs and governmental relations, said that the university’s scientists were working with NOAA scientists on several important projects, including one involving salt marshes and another on how to analyze data to make better environmental decisions, a project that also includes the U.S. Marine Corps’ Camp Lejeune.

“We hope that the federal government carefully considers all the impacts before it makes its decision,” Schoenfeld said.

Read more:

DUKE IN WASHINGTON UPDATE: Faculty, Staff, Athletic Team Highlight Recent University Visits to DC
This April, Duke in Washington will celebrate its second anniversary of operations while maintaining a strong commitment to engaging with the Washington community and supporting the University’s activities in the nation’s capitol. For an in-depth look at recent visitors and events, including the men’s lacrosse 2013 national championship team and President Brodhead, click here.

SAN ANTONIO MAYOR, JULIAN CASTRO, TO SPEAK AT DUKE APRIL 1
San Antonio Mayor Julian Castro will discuss public service on Tuesday, April 1, at Duke University’s Sanford School of Public Policy. Castro gained national attention when he gave the keynote speech at the 2012 Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, N.C. He was the first Latino to deliver a Democratic National Convention keynote address and was introduced by his identical twin brother, Joaquin, who is a congressman from Texas.

Read More:
Connect to Politics (hart.sanford.duke.edu)

DUKE OFFERS ADMISSION TO 2,697 HIGH SCHOOL SENIORS
A record 32,506 students applied for admission this year — over 700 students more than last year. Of the more than 29,300 who applied under Regular Decision, 2,640 students — 9 percent of the Regular Decision applicant pool — will receive a notice of acceptance today inviting them to become members of the Class of 2018. Another 57 students who applied Early Decision and whose decisions were deferred to March also will learn they have been admitted.

Read More:
Duke Offers Admission to 2,697 High School Seniors (Duke Today)