ETH News

21.06.2015 | News

Dancing droplets

Just as the size of transistors continues to decrease, laboratories are also expected to shrink until they eventually fit on a chip. ETH Zurich researchers have developed a system of using sound waves to move, merge or sort minuscule droplets with reagents or cells in a controlled manner. Read more 

01.04.2015 | News

Brilliant spark for personalised therapies

The 2015 Spark Award goes to a group of researchers led by ETH Professor Manfred Kopf, which has developed a method by which specific characteristics of immune cells can be identified. The technology could prove to be an important tool in personalised medicine. Read more 

13.02.2015 | News | 4 Comments

Data-storage for eternity

How can we preserve our knowledge today for the next millennia? ETH researchers have found a way to store information in the form of DNA, preserving it for nearly an eternity. Read more 

19.01.2015 | News

Cellulose with Braille for cells

Artificial implants such as pacemakers often cause complications because the body identifies them as foreign objects. Researchers at ETH Zurich have now demonstrated a simple method to fabricate cellulose-sheaths for implants, whose micro-structured surface makes them especially biocompatible. Read more 

03.12.2014 | News | 4 Comments

Bioplastic – greener than ever

Polylactic acid is a degradable plastic used mostly for packaging. To meet the rising demand, ETH researchers have developed an eco-friendly process to make large amounts of lactic acid from glycerol, a waste by-product in the production of biodiesel. Read more 

01.12.2014 | News

How early trauma influences behaviour

Traumatic and stressful events during childhood increase the risk to develop psychiatric disorders, but to a certain extent, they can also help better deal with difficult situations later in life. Researchers have studied this phenomenon in mice to learn how these effects could be transmitted to the next generation. Read more 

18.11.2014 | News

“We still have much to achieve”

“Hochschulmedizin Zürich”, a partner association of ETH Zurich, the University of Zurich and the university hospitals, was founded three years ago. At its annual conference, the partners presented the achievements of their strengthened collaboration, along with some promising new projects for the future. Read more 

12.11.2014 | News

Award-winning electron observer

Hans Jakob Wörner is the recipient of the Klung Wilhelmy Science Award for his research on super-fast electron movements during chemical processes. Read more 

12.11.2014 | News

Understanding natural compounds

Antibiotic-resistant germs, dangerous viruses, cancer: unsolved medical problems require new and better drugs. Nature can provide the inspiration for new active agents. A computer-based method developed by a team of researchers from ETH Zurich is helping to do just that. Read more 

02.07.2014 | News

New approach for tuberculosis drugs

In the past 50 years, only one new tuberculosis drug has come on to the market, yet many more active substances are urgently needed. Current treatments increasingly fail due to multidrug-resistant pathogens. ETH researchers have now applied to patent a novel approach for developing new tuberculosis drugs. Read more 

26.06.2014 | News | 3 Comments

A versatile joystick for animation artists

Manipulating 3-dimensional animated characters on a 2D screen is challenging and requires years of training. ETH researchers now make animation artists’ life a little easier with a new input device they can assemble into a shape similar to the virtual character. Read more 

19.06.2014 | News

Teaching machines how to learn

The machines that surround us in everyday life are not only becoming more intelligent, they’re also turning into gifted learners. To prepare the next generation of computer scientists for the challenges presented by this rapidly developing research area, ETH Zurich has joined forces with the Max-Planck-Institute for Intelligent Systems. Read more 

04.06.2014 | News

Reconciling a city with its river

The inhabitants of Jakarta have a difficult relationship with their river: it’s a waste carrier and an unwelcome guest in houses and on streets during the rainy season. ETH architecture students worked on concepts to reconcile the river with the city. Their ideas are currently on show at the Architecture Biennale in Rotterdam. Read more 

22.05.2014 | News | 1 Comment

How the gut feeling shapes fear

We are all familiar with that uncomfortable feeling in our stomach when faced with a threatening situation. By studying rats, researchers at ETH Zurich have been able to prove for the first time that our ‘gut instinct’ has a significant impact on how we react to fear. Read more 

13.05.2014 | News

U-Multirank: quality from a multidimensional view

Universities love to boast of their success in university rankings, but reducing the quality of an institution to a single ranking position does not do justice to the richness of the education and research landscape. U-Multirank is a new tool that aims to remedy this with its unique ‘multidimensional’ comparison of higher education institutions. Urs Hugentobler from Finance and Controlling at ETH Zurich explains how. Read more 

23.04.2014 | News

Male-biased Tweeting

Today women take an active part in public life. Without a doubt, they also converse with other women. In fact, they even talk to each other about other things besides men. As banal as it sounds, this is far from being the norm in Hollywood movies. The same goes for Twitter, as a new study shows. Read more 

26.03.2014 | News

Approaching the inexplicable

For his basic research in molecular spectroscopy Frédéric Merkt, Professor of Physical Chemistry, has received a number of awards. His research career began with a blessing in disguise. Read more 

24.03.2014 | News

Hot nanoparticles for cancer treatments

Nanoparticles have a great deal of potential in medicine: for diagnostics, as a vehicle for active substances or a tool to kill off tumours using heat. ETH Zurich researchers have now developed particles that are relatively easy to produce and have a wide range of applications. Read more 

17.03.2014 | News

Follow the ant trail for drug design

New drugs often fail because they cause undesirable side-effects. ETH researchers have developed simulation software that predicts the properties of active agents and virtually builds new ones. The software’s search process is modelled after the behaviour of ants. Read more 

06.03.2014 | News

Restless rivers

The surface of the earth is covered by a patchwork of river channels. These form the backbone of the landscape, defining boundaries or permitting communication between diverse ecosystems. However, river networks might be much more dynamic than has previously been assumed as demonstrated by researchers at ETH Zurich and MIT in Boston. Read more 

24.02.2014 | News | 1 Comment

The fingerprint of music making

To date, little data on how man and musical instrument work together has been available. Researchers at ETH are now investigating this interplay using sensors. The measurement data collected could help make practice more effective and interesting, and help to avoid typical problems suffered by musicians such as pain due to poor posture. Read more 

20.02.2014 | News

Launch of a Founders Network

No matter what the business idea may be, start-up founders all face the same challenge: the lack of a business network. ETH Zurich has now started a Founders Community to foster more interaction between the 350 existing ETH spin-offs. Read more 

23.01.2014 | News

Recruiting the best minds

Scholarships for talented international students enable Switzerland to attract the best minds. According to a joint study by ETH Zurich and the University of Zurich, this is not “brain drain” but a networking opportunity that benefits everyone involved. Read more 

22.01.2014 | News | 1 Comment

Fungi drive rainforest biodiversity

Rainforests are hot spots of biodiversity, with up to 300 plant species sharing the same hectare. An international research team has now shed light on what keeps dominant plant species in check, giving rarer species a chance to thrive. Read more 

16.01.2014 | News | 1 Comment

Increased mobility thanks to robotic rehab

After a stroke patients often struggle with persistent paresis. ETH researchers examined whether robot-assisted therapy can help stroke patients. This form of therapy proved successful particularly with the most severely affected persons with arm paresis. Read more 

11.12.2013 | News

Hydrogen-powered invasion

Although mankind is only just beginning to use hydrogen as an energy source, the concept has been established in nature for a long time. Researchers at ETH Zurich have discovered that the diarrhoea-causing bacterium Salmonella uses hydrogen as a source of energy to colonise the intestine. Read more 

22.11.2013 | News

Breastfeeding provides babies with iodine

WHO recommends that breastfeeding mothers without access to iodised salt should take an iodine supplement capsule to provide a year’s worth of iodine for them and their infant. ETH Zurich researchers tested the effectiveness of this method for the first time. Read more 

17.10.2013 | News

Observing brain activity during learning errors

A major goal in neuroscience is to identify how a person learns. Researchers have taken an important step forward by showing that mistakes made during a learning process activate certain areas of the brain. Read more 

11.10.2013 | News

New antiviral response discovered in mammals

Researchers of ETH Zurich have discovered a part of the innate immune system in mice that had only been known in plants and invertebrates. This system seems more visible in stem and progenitor cells, which it protects from viral infection. Read more 

09.10.2013 | News

A Nobel Prize for simulating chemical processes

The Nobel Prize in Chemistry was jointly awarded this year to Martin Karplus, Michael Levitt and Arieh Warshel for the development of multiscale models for complex chemical systems, paving the way for computer models that are crucial for the development of new drugs. Read more 

23.09.2013 | News

Chasing the black holes of the ocean

According to researchers from ETH Zurich and the University of Miami, some of the largest ocean eddies on Earth are mathematically equivalent to the mysterious black holes of space.
Read more 

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