Wiess School of Natural Sciences
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Biochemistry & Cell Biology
Earth Science
Ecology & Evolutionary Biology
Physics & Astronomy


Natural Sciences mourns loss of Professor Corcoran 


Insidious wasp gets ahead by tunneling through host's head 
crypt wasp

BioSciences Janet Braam receives Women in Science Award 


Moving up the food chain can beat being on top 

Rudolf tank

Physicist Wei Li wins Presidential Early Career Award 
Wei Li

'Bickering flies make evolutionary point' 

Saltz flies

New strategy may drop cancer’s guard 

endometrial cancer

Molecular imaging hack makes cameras 'faster' 

Landes Shen

Natural Sciences announces winners of science image contest(1) 

Chen Kira

Food fight! Eating may trigger bacterial therapy 
Bennett Matthew
20 years a laureate 
Curl 20 years
Earth's carbon points to planetary smashup 
ACS recognizes buckyball discovery 
buckyball ACS
Rice alumna Peggy Whitson prepares for next command aboard International Space Station 
Whitson 2
Faculty Search: Molecular Nanotechnology 

Faculty Nanotech web

Rice has key role in new computational science institute 


Coral reefs fall victim to overfishing, pollution, ocean warming 
coral reef bleaching
Astronomers find giant planet around very young star 
McDonald observatory
Oxygen atmosphere recipe = tectonics + continents + life 
Lee Cin-Ty
Bonnie Bartel elected to National Academy of Sciences 
Bartel NAS

New research finds actin is to thank for long-term memory 
Memory Wolynes

Natural Sciences undergrads present research projects 
UG Research Showcase
New tool probes deep into minerals and more 

Nanotechnology pioneer Robert Hauge dies 
Earth scientist Laurence Yeung wins Clarke Award 
Yeung Clarke Award
Ocean acidification already slowing coral reef growth 
Colossal Antarctic ice-shelf collapse followed last ice age 
Landes wins ACS Early Career award 
Landes career
Matthew Foster wins NSF CAREER Award 
Foster Career
Bacteria attach lignin with enzymatic tag team 
Phillips enzyme
A new twist in genetic switches 
genetic switch
Aryeh Warmflash wins NSF CAREER Award 
warmflash career
Grants give bioscience research a bump 
Dunn Awards
Obstacles not always a hindrance to proteins 
Rice develops first method for reversible color changes with metal nanoparticles 
Landes Byers
PSM students win PetroChallenge 
All eyes on ions at next Large Hadron Collider run 
Rice Team LHC
Antimatter not so different after all 
Geurts Xin
Caught in the act: New wasp species emerging 
Graphene nano-coils are natural electromagnets 
Research points to possible fungal control for leaf-cutter ants 
leaf cutter ants
Natural Sciences announces winners of science image contest 

Chen Kira

Kolomeisky named fellow of American Physical Society 
Kolomeisky award

Nobel Laureate Arieh Warshel to present Franklin Lecture 
Arieh Warshel
Deep-diving whales could hold answer for synthetic blood 
Phllips Samuels Olson
László Kürti wins NSF CAREER award 
Modified bacteria become a multicellular unit 
Bennett Ye Chen
Laser-burned graphene gains metallic powers 
graphene catalyst
Nanotube fibers being tested as a way to restore electrical health to hearts 
Pasquali spool
Researchers strategize to outsmart bacteria 
Gas sensors promise advances in Earth science 
Gas sensors
Evolution study finds massive genome shift in one generation 
Egan Scott
Biosciences helps celebrate World Ocean Day at HMNS 
World Ocean Day
Kinesiology lecturer Liette Ocker proves her mettle 
Ocker Kinesiology
Kristi Kincaid, chemistry ninja, loves obstacles 
Rice Earth science students get insiders’ view of Turkey 
Students in Turkey
Ancient algae found deep in tropical glacier 
Billups Brinson
Natural Sciences alumni honored at 2015 Laureates Dinner 
Laureates Award 2015
NASA plants tree in Michel’s memory 
NASA tree
'Nanoflares' superheat sun's corona 
suns corona
Correa brings Flower Garden Banks' coral reef to Rice 
Coral reef
Rice bioscientists team with Houston Public Works for algaculture study 
Bhattacharjee algae

Carina Nebula survey reveals details of star formation 
carina nebula
Aerogel catalyst shows promise for fuel cells 
Professional Science and Engineering Master's corporate reception draws 380 
PSM Corp Reception
Nano-antioxidants prove their potential 

injectible nanoparticlesinjectible nanoparticles
Binding bad: Buckyballs offer environmental benefits 
Barron Heimann
New leadership roles for Rice physicists at the Large Hadron Collider 
LHC Ecklund Padley
Lemur study featured on cover of the journal Ecology 
How cancer turns good cells to the dark side 
Cancer cells
Laser-induced graphene ‘super’ for electronics 
super graphene
Physics building earns 2015 Honor Award from American Institute of Architects 
Brockman recognized
Big-data analysis reveals gene sharing in mice 
Kohn mice
Doing math courtside with RUSMP 
Peter Cabeceiras '16 doing impactful research through The Texas Medical Center 
Back to school: Berkman hits the books at Rice 
New bioscientist bolsters Rice’s cancer research 
Warmflash Arydh
Field experiences are key in several BioSciences courses 
Rice chemists gain edge in next-gen energy 
material edge
Rice chemists advance understanding, control of collagen formation 
Hartgerink Jochim
Research shines light on soil additive’s seemingly contradictory benefits 
George Phillips named Biophysical Society fellow 
Nanoribbon film keeps glass ice-free 
‘Squid skin’ metamaterials project yields vivid color display 
color display
Houston Spaceport Frontier Lecture - Changing the Culture of Human Spaceflight 
space shuttle launch
NSF renews grant for biological physics research at Rice 
physics research
New solutions needed to recycle fracking water 
Barron fracking
Pacific plate shrinking as it cools 
Gordon map
Department merger brings together life sciences programs 
BioSciences Braam Siemann
New tools advance bio-logic 
Shis Bennett
Rice busy on Capitol Hill 
Lane congress
Peter Rossky begins his tenure as Dean of Natural Sciences 
Dean Rossky
James Tour to testify about nanotechnology 
Tour testify
Geophysicists prep for massive ‘ultrasound’ of Mount St. Helens 
Mount St Helens
BioSciences at Rice 
Labs characterize carbon for batteries 
Yakobson Lie
Curl and Kroto reunite on campus to discuss buckball discovery 
Curl Kroto
Quantum criticality observed in new class of materials 

‘Quadrapeutics’ works in preclinical study of hard-to-treat tumors 


Nanoscale composites improve MRI 


One step to solar-cell efficiency 


Eshel Ben-Jacob's groundbreaking strategy could turn cancer against itself 

HHMI awards Rice $1.9 million for STEM innovation 

For earth scientist Cin-Ty Lee, observing the world includes the view through his binoculars 
Lee birding
Acclaimed UT chemist named dean of Wiess School of Natural Sciences 
Flexible battery, no lithium required 
Yang flex
Centuries of sand to grow Mississippi Delta 
Sand satellite
Nanoreporters tell ‘sour’ oil from ‘sweet’ 
Oil field
A student with heart--Rice senior Sevith Rao founded the Indian Heart Association 
Rao Sevith
Black carbon is ancient by the time it reaches seafloor 
carbon black
Rebar strengthens case for graphene 
Carbon nanotubes
Houston Spaceport Frontier Lecture: Suspended in a Sunbeam 
Lean Sunbeam
Rice graduate programs ranked among nation's top 20 by US News 
Graduate studies
Houston Spaceport Frontier Lecture - Servicing the Hubble Space Telescope 
Hubble Massimino
Earth scientist Lenardic turns the art of skateboarding into a 'public display of science' 
Lenardic skateboard

Diamond film possible without the pressure 
Researchers tune in to protein pairs 
Onuchic protein pairs

Better protein capture a boon for drug manufacturers 
Landes Research group
Researchers ‘detune’ a molecule 
K.C. Nicolaou sets sights on cancer-related drug discovery 
KC Image
RAMBO a small but powerful magnet 
RAMBO magnet

Coal yields graphene quantum dots 
Tour Ye
Proteins’ passing phases revealed 
Revisiting Darwin’s thoughts on invasive species 
Japanese beetles
Dunn Foundation awards bioscience grants(1) 


Dagmar Beck receives 2013 NPSMA Board of Director's Award 
Beck Award
Arecibo Observatory celebrates 50 years of discovery 
Arecibo Observatory
Cochran, Hassett named AMS fellows 
cochran hassett
Going deep to study long-term climate evolution 
Climate evolution
American Chemical Society honors Peter Wolynes 
Wolynes cover
Physicists decode decision circuit of cancer metastasis 
'Ship in bottle' detects dangerous vapors 
Marti research
Mauricio Benitez honored by trustees 

Mauricio Benitez, executive administrator in the Department of Chemistry, received special recognition at the Sept. 19 Rice Board of Trustees meeting for outstanding service to his department, the Wiess School of Natural Sciences and the university. Mauricio Benitez Daniel Carson, dean of the Wiess School, praised

‘Vicious cycle’ shields, spreads cancer cells 
Cancer Carson Lab
Houston Spaceport Frontier Lectures - Techno-Stories from Space 

NASA engineer joins Rice Space Institute 

Mark Jernigan aims to boost collaborations as executive director NASA engineer Mark Jernigan has been appointed executive director of the Rice Space Institute (RSI) for the next year under the space agency’s Executive on Loan program. Mark Jernigan Jernigan takes over for astronaut Mike Mass

NEETs are prime suspects in breast cancer proliferation 


Rice earns top science rankings in new global study 


Coastal research community suggests ways to deal with climate change 


Graphene ‘onion rings’ have delicious potential 
Graphene onionrings
New material created at Rice with graphene oxide flakes 
Tour Knots

Managing vegetables’ ‘internal clocks’ postharvest could have health benefits 

Galicia team blogging from the deep blue sea 

Add boron for better batteries 


Bovine blood keeps gold nanoparticles stable 

Biochemist Gustin wins Rice’s top teaching award 


Bartel elected to the prestigious American Academy of Arts and Sciences 
Bartel AAAS
Leiden ranks Rice No. 1 for natural sciences and engineering 
Leiden Ranking
13 Rice students win NSF Graduate Research Fellowships 
Grad research NSF
Earth Science's Sandra Flechsig receives dintinguished service award(1) 

The 2013 Ruth M. Parks Award for Distinguished Service was presented to Sandra Flechsig, department coordinator for Earth Science, at the annual Science and Engineering Ice Cream Social. As stated by Richard Gordon, chair of Earth Science, "Sandra has established an unmatched record of reliability, consistency, a

Faculty Honors and Awards 2012-2013 
Faculty recognition

Natural Sciences Faculty Promotions 2013 
2013 faculty promotions
Ocean explorers want to get to the bottom of Galicia 
Galicia research team
Rice ecologists win four-year grant to study impact of bird loss on Guam 
Guam research group
Material turns ‘schizophrenic’ on way to superconductivity 
Si Yu Physics
Alan Bean in full bloom 
Alan Bean Lecture
Mathematics' Várilly-Alvarado recognized for outstanding teaching performance 


Five proposals win support from Faculty Initiatives Fund 
Faculty Initiatives Fund
Moonwalker Alan Bean to give Space Frontiers Lecture 

Gulf Coast Consortia honors Matthews’ extraordinary service 
Matthews GCC
PNAS names Rice study one of six best of 2012 
Braam PNAS
Physicists probe stress-induced changes in clot-forming protein 
Stressed Proteins
Rice builds nanotube photodetector 
Nanotube photo detector
Doubly honored: Two prestigious awards for Rice’s Putman 


One-two punch strategy against bacteria and cancer 


Essential armchair reading for nanotube researchers 

Biochemist George Phillips ’74 is back for a third stint at Rice 
Biochemist George Phillips ’74 is back for a third stint at Rice(1) 

Phillips visualization

Cells ‘flock’ to heal wounds 
NBC science and health reporter to speak at Rice Science Café 

Should you believe what you see on the TV news? NBC News’ chief science and health correspondent Robert Bazell will consider that question at the next Rice Science Café and offer a brief history of attempts to convey scientific information in the same medium that presents reality shows and prescription drug ads.

Program inspires Houston students to explore mathematics 

Rice’s Math Circle joins a national network of Mathematical Circles, organizations that unite mathematicians and precollege students who are interested in mathematics.

Drug resistance: 'Baby steps' can pay off big 

Rice University scientists have found that mutations of small effect can turn out to be game changers in the bacterial fight against antibiotic drugs.

Magma in mantle has deep impact 

A group led by geologist Rajdeep Dasgupta put very small samples of peridotite under very large pressures in a Rice laboratory to determine that rock can and does liquify, at least in small amounts, as deep as 250 kilometers in the mantle beneath the ocean floor. He said this explains several puzzles that have bothered scientists.

Nanoparticles reach new peaks 

Dunn Foundation awards bioscience grants 


Genomic frontier: The unexplored animal kingdom 

  Genomes of limpet, leech and worm put spotlight on lophotrochozoans A new report in the journal Nature unveils three of the first genomes from a vast, understudied swath of the animal kingdom that includes as many as one-quarter of Earth’s marine species. By publishing the genomes of a leech, an ocean-dwel

New Gulf Coastal Science Consortium zeroes in on cause of northern Gulf of Mexico sea-level rise 

The rate of sea-level rise in the northern Gulf of Mexico has accelerated from a pre-industrial average rate of approximately 0.4 millimeters per year to a current rate of at least 2.0 millimeters per year, according to the newly formed Gulf Coastal Science Consortium (GCSC) at Rice University. In a new worksh

Dreidel-like dislocations lead to remarkable properties 

Rice University theory predicts formation of conductive sub-nano ‘wires’ in two-dimensional materials A new material structure predicted at Rice University offers the tantalizing possibility of a signal path smaller than the nanowires for advanced electronics now under development at Rice and elsewhere. The

Meet Centennial Star Sandy Saunders 

Saunders Centennial

Multitasking plasmonic nanobubbles kill some cells, modify others 

Plasmonic nanobubbles

Lava dots: Rice makes hollow, soft-shelled quantum dots 

Wong lava dots

Mars lander team to lecture at Rice Nov. 1 

Mars Rover

Pinning protein could answer provocative cancer question 

Ball Minus

Rice community remembers longtime staff member Alex Ferrance 


Natural Sciences Centennial Celebration 

Open House

Natural Science's new Centennial Star 

Benitez star

NASA flight director Gene Kranz inspires at Rice with story of Apollo 13 

Gene Kranz main

NASA legend Gene Kranz to speak at Rice Sept. 12 

Kranz lecture

Nanoparticles reboot blood flow in brain 

Nanoparticles reboot

Radiation belt probes may help predict space weather(2) 

Radiation belt

Researchers aim to grow salivary glands using patient’s own cells 

Salivary glands

Lessons from Belize cannot be taught with a book 

Belize field biology

Rice climate-change expert available to comment on record US drought 

Sass drought

Rice has long history with CERN 


Nano-infused paint can detect strain 

paint strain

Flattened nanotubes are full of potential 

 closed-edge graphene

Protein residues kiss, don’t tell 

Protein kiss

Mountain of data awaits at Mount St. Helens 

Mt St Helens

Knotty proteins present new puzzle 

Protein Knot

Mathematic's Marie Magee this week's Centennial Star 

Marie Magee

New materials could slash energy costs for CO2 capture 


Faculty Promotions for Natural Sciences 

Faculty Promotions 2012

Reversible doping: Hydrogen flips switch on vanadium oxide 

gold electrodes

Math student wins rare chance to intern at Scientific American 

Scientific American

Flat boron may take many forms 


Levine named fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences 

Levine AAAS

NSF Graduate Research Fellowships 

NSF Grad

Natural Sciences at the Rice UnConvention 

UnConvention Logo

Nanostarfruits are pure gold for research 

Nano starfruit

Reiff selected as Birkeland Lecturer by the University of Oslo 

Reiff Birkeland

Plants use circadian rhythms to prepare for battle with insects 

Perfect nanotubes shine brightest 

 Weisman presenting

Research at Rice University leads to nanotube-based device for communication, security, sensing 

Graphene rips follow rules 

Physicists solve mystery of colorful armchair nanotubes 


Protecting ecosystems in southeast Texas 

 Apple Snail

Landes lands CAREER grant 


Rice chemists cram 2 million nanorods into single cancer cell 


Graphene pushes popularity of Rice papers 

 Tour James

Research proposes common link between autism, diabetes 


Giant flakes make graphene oxide gel 

 Graphene flakes

Nanobelts support manipulation of light 


Nanobelts support manipulation of light(2) 

Rice chemist to testify about hydraulic fracturing 

Graphene walls could make powerful electronics 

 Graphene shoe

NASA backs graduate student research 


Hubble movies reveal solar-system-sized traffic jams 


One box of Girl Scout cookies worth $15 billion 
Invasive tree afflicting Gulf Coast was not brought to US by Ben Franklin 
Provost testifies on the commercial potential of nanotechnology before Senate Commerce subcommittee 

 McLendon Senate

Juvenile diarrhea virus analyzed 

 Tao Dong

Molecules 'light up' Alzheimer's roots 


Fossilized pollen reveals climate history of northern Antarctica 


NSF fellowships awarded to students for graduate study 


Fossilized pollen reveals climate history of northern Antarctica(2) 

Colorado Plateau


A team of scientists has figured out why the Colorado Plateau – a 130,000-square-mile region that straddles Colorado, Utah, Arizona and New Mexico –is rising even while parts of its lower crust appear to be falling.

Orchestrating lab move into Brockman Hall for Physics 
Microsponges from seaweed may save lives 

McDevitt microsponge


Professor John McDevitt leads the Rice University lab where Bio-Nano-Chips are programmed to detect signs of cardiac disease, cancer and HIV

Rice chemists take molecules for a spin 

KolomeiskyAnatoly Kolomeisky and Rice graduate student Alexey Akimov have taken a large step toward defining the behavior of molecular whirligigs.

Mold McDonald has a farm 

Strassmann etalEvolutionary biologists Joan Strassmann and David Queller reported that the long-studied social amoebas commonly known as slime molds  increase their odds of survival through a rudimentary form of agriculture.

Mold McDonald has a farm 

Strassmann etalEvolutionary biologists Joan Strassmann and David Queller reported that the long-studied social amoebas commonly known as slime molds  increase their odds of survival through a rudimentary form of agriculture.