A Truly Interstellar Physics Show

The University of Bonn’s highly popular Physics Show will be premiering a new program on Saturday, September 9 and Sunday, September 10, starting at 2 pm on both days. Come along to the Wolfgang Paul lecture hall at Kreuzbergweg 28 in Bonn to find out all about the kingdom on the planet Promethea. Can Franzi and Fred help justice win the day? The team led by Prof. Herbert Dreiner will be showcasing all kinds of physics experiments as the plot thickens. Anyone interested can sign up at www.physikshow.uni-bonn.de

How the Immune System Keeps Gut Bacteria under Control

How are bacteria on our mucous membranes affected by type-A antibodies (IgA)? Assistant professor Dr. Tim Rollenske works at University Hospital Bonn to study specific immune system effects on the intestinal tract. Dr. Rollenske is leader of an Emmy Noether Research Group newly formed at the University of Bonn, which he believes will open the door to a professorship. The German Research Foundation (DFG) will be providing up to two million euros in funding for the project over the next six years. The research results could lead to more effective vaccination strategies for the mucous membranes and support efforts to counter antibiotic-resistant bacteria. 

Study calls for improvements in climate protection

Projects that reduce deforestation often sell carbon credits - for instance, to consumers purchasing airline tickets. However, over 90 percent of these project credits do not actually offset greenhouse gas emissions. This is the conclusion of a study conducted by the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam (Netherlands), the University of Bonn, the University of Cambridge (United Kingdom) and the European Forest Institute in Barcelona (Spain). It was carried out on an exemplary basis for 26 projects in six countries. The results have now been published in the renowned journal Science.

Researchers decode new antibiotic

More and more bacterial pathogens are developing resistance. There is an increasing risk that common drugs will no longer be effective against infectious diseases. That is why scientists around the world are searching for new effective substances. Researchers from the University of Bonn, the German Center for Infection Research (DZIF), Utrecht University (Netherlands), Northeastern University in Boston (USA) and the company NovoBiotic Pharmaceuticals in Cambridge (USA) now have discovered and deciphered the mode of action of a new antibiotic. Clovibactin is derived from a soil bacterium. This antibiotic is highly effective at attacking the cell wall of bacteria, including many multi-resistant “superbugs.” The results have now been published in the renowned journal “Cell.” 

A Compass for Successful Climate Adaptation

Work to adapt to climate change is becoming increasingly important across the globe. Ensuring that these efforts are effective and have no unintended negative consequences is a vital part of this process. Researchers from the University of Twente in the Netherlands have joined forces with colleagues from France, Kenya, India, South Africa, the US and the University of Bonn to propose a framework that they call “Navigating the Adaptation-Maladaptation Continuum” (NAM). This tool will aid decision-making on climate adaptation measures and help promote a more equitable and more sustainable future. Their findings have now been published in the journal “Nature Climate Change.” 

University of Bonn Ranks among World’s Top Universities

In the recently published Shanghai Academic Ranking of World Universities (ARWU), the University of Bonn has ranked as one of Germany’s top four universities and in the top ten EU-wide, taking 67th place in the list of the world’s leading universities. Bonn thus moved up nine slots since last year on the worldwide ranking list.

Researchers “film” novel catalyst at work

A novel catalysis scheme enables chemical reactions that were previously virtually impossible. The method developed at the University of Bonn is also environmentally friendly and does not require rare and precious metals. The researchers recorded the exact course of the catalysis in a kind of high-speed film. They did this using special lasers that can make processes visible that last only fractions of a billionth of a second. The results allow them to further optimize the catalyst. They have been published in the international edition of the renowned journal “Angewandte Chemie.”

Measuring the Extent of Global Droughts in Unprecedented Detail

While some parts of the world suffer extreme heat and persistent drought, others are being flooded. Overall, continental water volumes vary so much over time that global sea levels fluctuate significantly too. By combining the hydrological model WaterGAP with GRACE satellite data, a team of geodesists at the University of Bonn have come up with a new set of data that shows how the total distribution of water over the Earth’s land surfaces has changed over the past 20 years more accurately than ever before. Their findings are now being published in the “Journal of Geodesy.”

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