Most recent Press Releases

  • School Closures Led to More Sleep and Better Quality of Life for Adolescents

    The school closures in spring 2020 had a negative effect on the health and well-being of many young people. But homeschooling also had a positive flipside: Thanks to sleeping longer in the morning, many teenagers reported improved health and health-related quality of life. The study authors from the University of Zurich therefore believe school days should begin later in the morning.

  • Climate and Soil Determine Distribution of Plant Traits

    An international research team succeeded in identifying global factors that explain the diversity of form and function in plants. Led by the University of Zurich, the Max Planck Institute for Biogeochemistry in Jena and the University of Leipzig, the researchers collected and analyzed plant data from around the world. For the first time, they showed for characteristics such as plant size, structure, and life span how strongly these are determined by climate and soil properties. Insights derived from this could be crucial to improving Earth system models with regard to the role of plant diversity.

  • Academic Education Can Positively Affect Aging of the Brain

    The benefits of good education and lifelong learning extend into old age. The initial findings of a long-term study show that certain degenerative processes are reduced in the brains of those with a university education. Their brains are better able to compensate age-related cognitive and neural limitations.

  • Mechanism for DNA Invasion of Adenoviral Covid-19 Vaccines Discovered

    Adenoviruses have a linchpin protein that stabilizes their DNA until it reaches the infected cell’s nucleus. The protein then detaches from the viral genome, and the virus uncoats. Only then are the genes released into the nucleus, which is necessary for the production of new viruses. This process, discovered by researchers at the University of Zurich, is a key for effective functioning of various Covid-19 vaccines.

  • Embroideries, Appliqués and Pleats as Carriers of Cultural Meaning

    The Ethnographic Museum at the University of Zurich is showing textiles made by Miao societies in Southwest China for the first time. The new exhibition Hidden Complexities showcases the complex textile skills and knowledge of Miao women based on 400 items of clothing, fabric and tools. And it reveals that there is far more to the stunning colors, patterns and materials than meets the eye.

  • 2,700-Year-Old Leather Armor Proves Technology Transfer Happened in Antiquity

    Researchers at the University of Zurich have investigated a unique leather scale armor found in the tomb of a horse rider in Northwest China. Design and construction details of the armor indicate that it originated in the Neo-Assyrian Empire between the 6th and 8th century BCE before being brought to China.

  • Exposure to Harmless Coronaviruses Boosts SARS-CoV-2 Immunity

    Infections with the novel coronavirus and vaccination lead to strong antibody responses against SARS-CoV-2. Immune responses to other human coronaviruses, which mostly only cause harmless colds, also provide some protection against SARS-CoV-2. This cross-reactive immune response is an important piece of the puzzle of how to achieve comprehensive coronavirus immunity, researchers at the University of Zurich have shown.

  • Covid-19 Leads to Short-Term and Long-Term Push in Digitalization

    The Covid-19 pandemic has accelerated the digitalization of everyday life. Especially when it comes to working and shopping, Swiss people want to see most of these changes remain in the long run. These are results of a representative survey conducted by the University of Zurich on internet use in Switzerland.

  • New Insights into Kidney Disease with Tropical Frog Models

    Using cutting-edge genetic engineering, UZH researchers have developed a model to study hereditary kidney disease with the help of tropical frogs. The method allows them to collect large amounts of data on anomalies, which can then be analyzed using artificial intelligence. The research opens up new opportunities in the search for new treatment approaches for the hitherto incurable disease.

  • Nature’s Masterpieces on Display

    From November, visitors to the University of Zurich’s Zoological and Paleontological Museum will be able to marvel at 50 incredible fossil specimens. These naturally created masterpieces will be beautifully presented in a brand new, specially designed “Schatzkammer”. The exhibits are a long-term loan from the Aathal Dinosaur Museum.

  • Rising Approval of Regulation among Swiss Population

    The majority of Swiss people approve of how their government is regulating the economy. However, the idea of increased regulation, for example in healthcare or the financial industry, has been gaining favor, according to a survey among 2,350 Swiss voters conducted by researchers at the University of Zurich in 2020.

  • Journalism Increasingly Important in Combatting Disinformation

    Professional quality media, particularly in times of crisis, help to put facts and numbers in context and stem the tide of false information. Still, the economic situation for journalism continues to deteriorate. For the first time, revenues from online advertising also declined. In Switzerland, there is relatively high public support for media subsidies for private media. These are some of the main findings of the Yearbook Quality of the Media 2021 produced by the Research Center for the Public Sphere and Society (fög) at the University of Zurich.

  • Mechanism Behind Ineffective Psoriasis Drugs Identified

    Interleukin-12 – a messenger molecule of immune cells – was long considered to trigger the development of psoriasis. Now, researchers at the University of Zurich have shown that interleukin-12 does not actually cause the skin disease but protects against it. This also explains why common psoriasis drugs that block the messenger show insufficient treatment efficacy.

  • Towards Precision Medicine for Dialysis Patients

    A common gene variant for the protein Aquaporin-1 lowers the amount of water channels in the cell membranes. This reduces water transport and leads to a higher risk of death in patients with kidney failure treated with peritoneal dialysis. In such cases, specific osmotic solutions should be used, as an international research team led by the University of Zurich has shown.

  • 80 Percent of People in Switzerland Feel Fully Integrated into Society

    Only very few people in Switzerland feel highly excluded – including mostly foreigners, less educated people, young people as well as older people. Some in the French- and Italian-speaking regions do not feel fully integrated into society either, according to a recent study conducted by the Institute of Sociology at the University of Zurich.

  • Flying High-Speed Drones into the Unknown with AI

    Researchers at the University of Zurich have developed a new approach to autonomously fly quadrotors through unknown, complex environments at high speeds using only on-board sensing and computation. The new approach could be useful in emergencies, on construction sites or for security applications.

  • Antidepressants Inhibit Cancer Growth in Mice

    Classic antidepressants could help improve modern cancer treatments. They slowed the growth of pancreatic and colon cancers in mice, and when combined with immunotherapy, they even stopped the cancer growth long-term. In some cases the tumors disappeared completely, researchers at UZH and USZ have found. Their findings will now be tested in human clinical trials.

  • Natural Killer Cells Coordinate Wound Healing

    Natural killer cells do not just kill cancer cells or cells infected with viruses, they also mediate a trade-off between wound healing and bacterial defense in skin wounds. If the healing process is accelerated, the immune defense is weakened, researchers at the University of Zurich have now shown. This has relevance in treating skin injuries and in tackling antibiotic-resistant germs.

  • On Artificial Skin and Natural Packaging

    The seventh edition of Scientifica, the science festival held by the University of Zurich and ETH Zurich, had a new format this year: for the first time, the Hönggerberg and Irchel campuses were also open to visitors, offering them the chance to experience up close recent scientific developments around the topic “Synthetic – naturally”. The large numbers of visitors demonstrated the huge public appetite that exists for direct interaction with researchers.

  • UZH and Airbus to Grow Miniature Human Tissue on the International Space Station (ISS)

    UZH Space Hub and Airbus Defence and Space are sending an experiment into space on the next resupply flight to the International Space Station (ISS) with the aim of advancing the industrial production of human tissue in microgravity. The ISS will thus function as a workshop to produce miniature human tissues for terrestrial use in research and medicine. Initial preparatory tests on the ISS 18 months ago were successful.