Researcher Spotlight

Our researchers are innovators in their fields, working with industry and graduate students to improve our world.

  • Growing Local Food Connections

    Samina Raja, PhD, associate professor of urban planning: "Local governments in the U.S. are finally beginning to recognize the need to invest in food systems."

    Raja helped create a searchable database to strengthen community food systems nationwide.

  • Money and Self-worth

    Lora Park, associate professor of psychology, "People don't often think of the possible downsides of wrapping their identity and self-worth around financial pursuits."

    Park recommends people look to their personal strengths to self-affirm. 

  • Henry Louis Taylor.
    Watching US - Cuba Unfold

    Henry Louis Taylor Jr., PhD, professor of urban and regional planning: He believes the U.S. made it tough for Cuba but now may be what makes it better for the country and its people. 

  • Groundbreaking studies of the Mapuche people

    Ana Mariella Bacigalupo, professor of anthropology, has spent more than 24 years researching the Mapauche people, who comprise 80% of Chile's indigenous population.

    A noted scholar of shamanism, Bacigalupo has had many fellowships for her ethnographic research.

  • How Do Polar Bears Stay Warm?

    Charlotte Lindqvist, PhD, UB assistant professors of biological sciences: "There were more unique variants in polar bear genes than in those of the other species."

    Lindqvist says with genetic adaptations polar bears survive by turning food into energy or heat. 

  • Improving patient satisfaction

    Jeffrey Lackner, professor, Dept. of Medicine: "Patient satisfaction ... metric that impacts reimbursement as health care emphasizes the value of care, not the volume of care."

    Lackner's study revealed: many factors of patient satisfaction are beyond the doctor's control.

  • How people learn with virtual reality

    Richard Lamb, associate professor of learning and instruction: "The brain does not differentiate between reality and virtual reality."

    Lamb has set up the multidisciplinary Neurocognition Science Lab, home of UB's VR activity, to understand how we can teach and learn better.

  • Mark Frank.
    Decoding Faked Expressions of Pain

    Mark Frank, PhD, professor of communication: "Even after training, humans were accurate only 55 percent of the time. The computer ... 85 percent of the time."

    Frank says computers know better whether it's real or faked pain.

  • Sequencing silver birch genomes

    Victor Albert, professor of biological sciences: "Others, like spruce, pine and poplar, all have genome sequences, but birch did not — until now."

    Albert and an international research team — what makes a birch tree hardy in different environments to meet industry needs.

  • Testing the Hearing Tests

    Richard Salvi, SUNY Distinguished Professor, Dept. of Communicative Disorders and Sciences, "...people with this type of damage have difficulty hearing in certain situations, like hearing speech in a noisy room."

    Salvi looks for ways to uncover "hidden hearing loss" not tracked by the traditional tests.

  • Treating HCV among Substance Abusers

    Andrew Talal, professor, Department of Medicine, in referencing hepatitis C virus — "We're seeing infection hotspots," and says it's partly the result of the opioid epidemic.

    Talal is developing innovative ways to diagnose and treat HCV among substance abusers.

  • Genomics & Data Analytics for Innovation

    Norma Nowak, PhD, executive director, NYS Center of Excellence in Bioinformatics & Life Sciences, is a recognized leader in human genomics. She's helping guide the Buffalo Institute for Genomics and Data Analytics

  • Toyota Invests in Clean-tech Vehicles

    Krishna Rajan, ScD, Erich Block Endowed Chair of MDI, on innovative and cost-effective solutions to "spur advanced materials research that powers future clean-tech vehicles."

    UB, Stanford, MIT and Michigan—part of a $35M Toyota investment

  • Recognized as an inventor

    SUNY Distinguished Professor Paras Prasad is a recognized expert in optics and photonics, leading him to be named a fellow of the National Academy of Inventors.

    Prasad was a pioneer in nanomedicine — the use of super-small particles, materials and devices to treat and diagnose disease.

  • Tracking Protein Dances

    Andrea Markelz, professor, Dept. of Physics, "The direction of the motion ... can really determine how well a protein performs its biological function."

    Markelz focuses on a turnkey instrument measuring molecular vibrations — useful for drug development and harvesting AI.