Being in nature can be therapeutic. It can clear your mind, soothe your soul, and even help you stay sober. Adventure therapy is at the heart of many addiction recovery programs in Arizona. It’s a unique form of psychotherapy that draws people from all over the world to heal in beautiful landscapes of the Southwest.
Regular exercise is good for a lot of things: strengthening muscles, decreasing body fat, even helping us sleep better. Now, new research shows it’s also good for the trillions of micro-organisms in our intestines, which have a profound effect on other systems in our bodies.
A sophisticated new lab on the campus of Northern Arizona University is helping researchers study the intricate mechanics of the human body. From increasing athletic performance to improving movement for people with conditions like cerebral palsy, the Human Performance Lab at the Center for Bioengineering Innovation is a hub for groundbreaking research. Anthony Hassel is a biologist at NAU.
We all react differently to seeing someone in distress. Some feel empathy. Some don’t. Some feel the pain so strongly they take it on as their own. Flagstaff social neuroscientist Chad Woodruff is trying to measure compassion and empathy by recording the activity of “mirror” or “social neurons” in the brain.
Scientists are studying the DNA of a deadly tropical fungus to learn how it is able to adapt in a foreign environment. Cryptococcus gattii is believed to have originated in the jungles of Brazil, but has been making people sick in the Pacific Northwest of the United States for about 20 years. David Engelthaler, the director of TGen in Flagstaff, wants to know how strains of the fungus are evolving and spreading disease.