Truth and Consequences

Illustration of boy with article title and words

Building a Game to Fight the Rural AIDS Epidemic

By Matt Windsor

Comfort Enah, Ph.D., a researcher in the UAB School of Nursing, can't build a time machine to help teens avoid making bad decisions in the future. So she's creating the next best thing: a video game.

Working with a team from the UAB School of Engineering, Enah is crafting a simulation of the challenges of modern teen life—including social media shaming, drug and alcohol use, dating boundaries, and the wildfire spread of misinformation on the Internet. The goal is to slow the HIV epidemic among adolescents in the rural South. Enah's dream, if the game proves effective, is to take it to the even more hard-hit communities of sub-Saharan Africa, where she grew up.

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The Buzz About Chikungunya

Illustration of mosquito over map of Caribbean and southeastern U.S.

The Buzz About Chikungunya

How the emerging virus arrived in America—and how UAB will help fight it

By Charles BuchananIllustrations by Ron Gamble and Laura Hannah

Don’t blame chickens for chikungunya, the virus making headlines for its spread in the United States in 2014. Rather, its winged carriers include mosquitoes and a far more effective disease distributor: air passengers.

At the beginning of August 2014, the 50 states were reporting nearly 400 cases of the disease, from Maine to Florida to Hawaii, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (The CDC has not officially counted any suspected cases in Alabama.) Nearly all of those cases were unfortunate souvenirs picked up by visitors to the Caribbean, where the disease jumped from zero cases before October 2013 to an estimated 300,000 today.

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Building the Car of Tomorrow

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Building the Car of Tomorrow

Mechatronics and the Future of the Auto Industry

By Todd Dills

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Alabama has become an unlikely leader in the automotive industry, with manufacturing plants from Mercedes, Honda, and Hyundai producing the latest SUVs, minivans, and sedans. Meanwhile, at the UAB School of Engineering, Vladimir Vantsevich, Ph.D., Sc.D., and his students are working on the next generation of vehicles.

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Sensitive Subjects

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Sensitive Subjects

Researcher Explores the Problems of Pain

By Nancy Mann Jackson

Burel R. Goodin, Ph.D., traces his interest in pain back to his days as an outside linebacker for the Illinois College Blueboys. Early in one game, a fellow linebacker hurt his arm in a tackle, but he shook off the sting and stayed on the field. It wasn’t until after the final whistle blew that the injured teammate discovered he had a compound fracture in his arm.

“One of the bones in my friend’s forearm was broken, but he finished the whole game before getting any pain meds or medical attention,” says Goodin, a clinical health psychologist and director of the UAB Biobehavioral Pain Research Lab. “How did he not appreciate that he was in any significant pain until after the game?” That question, and others like it, launched Goodin on a search for answers.

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