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News and Events | Issue 3, 2021



Where should our digital data go after we die?

People want to maintain a sense of agency and control over how their personal digital data is handled after they die, according to new research from UBC computer scientists. As more and more of our daily lives intersect with digital spaces, the issue will become more pressing.






UBC leads development of promising treatment for COVID-19 variants

The new anti-viral drug could improve COVID-19 survival rates — and is highly effective against multiple variants — according to a new study by microbiologists at UBC and Université de Sherbrooke.





First-ever cooling of antimatter by laser

Canadian researchers have cooled a sample of antimatter down to near absolute zero using a laser. The new technique could open the doors to future antimatter experimentation and explain why the Universe is made primarily of matter— not equal parts matter and antimatter.



Atmosphere pollution



Aerosols have three liquid phases

UBC chemists have discovered three liquid phases in aerosol particles, changing our understanding of air pollutants in Earth’s atmosphere. This information could lead to better predictions of air quality and improved atmospheric modelling.





Exciting Entomology
Discover UBC’s vast entomological collection and learn about the incredible diversity of insects.

June 6, 2021



Lacks biography


UBC Book Club
The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks tackles the intersection of race, science and society—read and discuss.
May 2021





Ethical Indigenous AI
Indigenous scholars discuss developing Hua Ki’i. The object recognition app translates images into Indigenous languages.



Voice activated app



Will we be able to tell if we're talking to a robot?

While voice user interfaces such as Siri and Alexa are common nowadays, designers are trying to make their conversations even more natural. UBC researchers explain how we can design interfaces that ‘talk’ better.






How a knee injury led to a career

After Iyad Salloum (BSc ‘14, MPT ‘16) injured his knee in first year, the care and reassurance he received at UBC inspired him to become a physiotherapist. During his undergrad, he focused his studies on physiology and neuroscience, which are the bedrock of his practice.



Maisie Morsara



Helping students find the right path

Maisie Morsara (BSc '06) talks about her journey from biochemistry to becoming an academic advisor. “There are a lot of external factors influencing students,” she says. “Sometimes they’re not really listening to what their heart wants.”




  • On Earth, the UBC Pacific Museum of the Earth podcast, chats with UBC Science Dean Dr. Meigan Aronson.

  • Chemist Dr. Russ Algar is the recipient of UBC’s Charles A McDowell award, which recognizes excellence in pure or applied research by a young faculty member.

  • UBC mathematician Dr. Ailana Fraser has been awarded the 2021 CMS Cathleen Synge Morawetz Prize for her work on geometric calculus of variations, conformal geometry, and partial differential equations.

  • UBC Science alumna Larissa Chiu (BSc '21) has won an inaugural McCall MacBain scholarship for a fully funded master’s or professional degree at McGill.

  • UBC chemists and VGH researchers were part of a team recognized with an BMO Capital Markets Innovators’ Challenge award for their work creating an inexpensive opioid detector.


Woman with glasses



Key component of COVID-19 vaccine developed at UBC

Acuitas Therapeutics, a UBC spin-off co-founded by biochemist Dr. Pieter Cullis, developed the technology that allows the Pfizer-BioNTech mRNA vaccine to enter human cells. Dr. Cullis hopes to use this same technology, which delivers messenger RNA to targeted cells, to treat other diseases.



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