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Forbes

A new center established at the McGovern Institute for Brain Research is aimed at accelerating the development of novel therapies and technologies, writes Katie Jennings for Forbes. The hope is that “we can identify common pathways, either a common molecular pathway that's a chokepoint for a therapy or a common group of neurons or neural systems,” says Prof. Robert DeSimone, director of the McGovern Institute.

The Boston Globe

Boston Globe reporter Felice Freyer writes about the K. Lisa Yang and Hock E. Tan Center for Molecular Therapeutics in Neuroscience, which was established at the McGovern Institute for Brain Research thanks to a $28 million gift from philanthropist Lisa Yang and MIT alumnus Hock Tan ’75. “The center will develop tools to precisely target the malfunctioning genes and neurons underpinning brain disorders,” writes Freyer.

Archinect

MIT alumna Angeline Jacques speaks with Archinect reporter Katherine Guimapang about her design for a new conceptual framework for Glacier National Park and her experience entering the workforce during the Covid-19 pandemic. Jacques explains that her MIT thesis “was on the design of National Parks in the age of climate change and spanned geography, landscape, and architecture as disciplines.”

Wired

Prof. Lisa Piccirillo, The Engine CEO Katie Rae, and several MIT alumni are among the community members honored as part of Wired25, an annual list compiled by Wired that spotlights people who are working to make the world a better place.

Stat

Emily Calandrelli SM ’13 speaks with STAT reporter Pratibha Gopalakrishna about her work aimed at getting children interested in science, the importance of representation in the STEM fields, and her new Netflix show. “I don’t shy away from the science because I think kids are very clever and know way more than a lot of people give them credit for,” says Calandrelli.

Scientific American

MIT alumnus Dario Gil, SM ’00, PhD ’03, director of research for IBM, writes for Scientific American about why it is essential that the U.S. retain its ability to attract foreign students. “Continuing to attract foreign highly skilled scientists to the United States and retaining them is crucial for building a bright future that relies on emerging technologies such as quantum computing and artificial intelligence (AI),” writes Gil.

New York Times

Writing for The New York Times, Anthony Doerr reviews “The Smallest Lights in the Universe” and “The Sirens of Mars,” new books from Professor Sara Seager and alumna Sarah Stewart Johnson ’08, respectively. Doerr notes that “both writers exemplify the humanity of science: Seager and Johnson laugh, grieve, hope, fail, try, fail and try again.”

NECN

Michael Hecht of MIT’s Haystack Observatory speaks with Perry Russom of NECN about MOXIE, a new experimental device that will convert carbon dioxide in the Marian atmosphere into oxygen. Hecht explains that the inspiration for MOXIE lies in how it would be easier, “if we could make that oxygen on Mars and not have to bring this huge honking oxygen tank with us all the way from Earth.”

Boston Globe

Boston Globe reporter Caroline Enos spotlights the contributions of MIT researchers to the Mars 2020 mission, in particular the Mars Oxygen In-Situ Resource Utilization Experiment or MOXIE. “MOXIE could have a big impact on future missions if it is successful,” Enos explains.

Vox

Prof. Tanja Bosak speaks with Vox reporter Brian Resnick about how Martian materials collected by the Perseverance rover might provide clues about early life forms on Earth. "These [Martian] rocks are older, by half a billion or a billion years, than anything that’s well preserved that we have on Earth,” says Bosak.

Smithsonian Magazine

Haystack’s Michael Hecht, the principal investigator for the Mars MOXIE experiment, speaks with Max G. Levy of Smithsonian about the challenges involved in developing MOXIE’s oxygen-producing technology. “We want to show we can run [MOXIE] in the daytime, and the nighttime, in the winter, and in the summer, and when it’s dusty out," says Hecht, "in all of the different environments."

New York Times

New York Times reporter Dennis Overbye spotlights Sarah Stewart Johnson ‘08 and her new book, which explores what inspired her passion for the Red Planet. Maria Zuber, MIT’s vice president for research, noted that she was “blessed” to have Johnson in her lab. “She would look like she was bouncing around trying to zero in on something useful, and then she would do something absolutely brilliant,” said Zuber.

National Public Radio (NPR)

NPR’s Scott Simon remembers former MIT Professor Michael Hawley. Simon notes that Hawley’s “Things That Think and Toys of Tomorrow projects prophesied so much of the ways in which our world would become digitally connected.”

Associated Press

MIT alumnus and philanthropist David Koch has died, reports Steve Peoples and Jennifer Peltz for the Associated Press. Koch was an ardent supporter of cancer research and “donated $100 million in 2007 to create a cancer research institute at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.”

Financial Times

David Koch, an MIT alumnus known for his philanthropic work, has died at age 79, reports Andrew Edgecliffe-Johnson and Lindsay Fortado for the Financial Times. Koch, who was a basketball star at MIT, “donated or pledged more than $1.3bn in total to causes including cancer research, hospitals and education."