Helping to Combat Anaemia in Haiti

Anaemia is a public health problem in Haiti. 61% of children younger than 5 years (72% of which are under 2 years old), 50% of pregnant women and 34% of lactating mothers are anaemic (figures from 2006).

Food fortification – that is, fortification of staple foodstuffs with iron and other necessary nutrients – offers an effective way to combat anaemia. In Haiti, wheat flour is consumed by the entire population in both urban and rural areas. In February 2017, the country issued a law making it obligatory to fortify wheat flour with iron, folic acid, B vitamins and zinc. Read more.

Comparing watershed black locust afforestation and natural revegetation impacts on soil nitrogen on the Loess Plateau of China

This study examined a pair of neighbouring small watersheds with contrasting vegetations: artificial forestland and natural grassland. Since 1954, afforestation which mainly planted with black locust has been conducted in one of these watersheds and natural revegetation in the other. The differences in soil total N, nitrate, ammonium, foliar litterfall δ15N and dual stable isotopes of δ15N and δ18O in soil nitrate were investigated in the two ecosystems. Read more.

10th International Symposium On Targeted Alpha Therapy Session IV: Nanocarriers

Kanazawa, Japan ( There is a substantial problem with binding the radioisotope to a molecular structure. Isotopes like Ra223 and Ac225 have decay chains that emit a total of four alphas. When the first decay occurs, the recoil of the daughter nucleus is sometimes sufficient to break the molecular bond holding the radioisotope. For the isotopes above, one of the daughter nuclei has a long enough half-life to travel through the body. This is doubly bad since not only is the alpha lost to the tumor site but the free isotope may damage healthy organs, especially the liver and kidneys.

The solution to these problems is to capture the radioisotope within a mechanical structure of a size (10’s of nanometers) and composition that alpha particles can escape but the daughter is retained. Either a coating or the composition of the nanocarrier is such that it can still be attached to antibody that targets the tumor. Read more.

How chemical 'clues' in diet can help identify human remains—and climate changes

SFU archaeology professor Mike Richards is studying how the chemical signatures from food and water consumed by humans and animals can provide clues to identifying human remains—and can also shed light on changes in climate.

The newly-named Canada Research Chair holder in Archaeological Science has established a lab at SFU to analyze isotopes, which are forms of chemical elements, that have been digested and incorporated into body tissues. “These chemical signatures record the diet, as well as the geographical location and climate when that tissue was formed for humans and animals,” explains Richards. Read more.