Appetite for Life Public Programing

Mark Your Calendar
The Nutrition Research Institute’s popular series of public programs, called Appetite for Life, resumes this January for a five-month run. Once each month, January through May, distinguished science researchers and educators will deliver presentations to help you understand the latest advances in nutritional science and what they mean for you. These engaging presentations are intended for non-scientific audiences. This season topics ranging from the merits of vitamin supplementation to the prevention of fatty liver disease will be presented by UNC NRI faculty as well as guest speakers from renowned institutions as Cornell University and University of California, Berkeley. Celebrate your appetite for life by attending these informative discussions. For a full listing of talks, speakers and dates, visit

New Faculty – Stephen Hursting, Ph.D., M.P.H.

The Nutrition Research Institute welcomes Stephen Hursting Ph.D., M.P.H., to its faculty. Dr. Hursting, an expert in diet and cancer prevention, trained at UNC Chapel Hill and directed research programs for 20 years at the National Cancer Institute and University of Texas. He has returned to North Carolina as Professor at the UNC NRI and the Linebarger Comprehensive Cancer Center in Chapel Hill. Read more.


Research We’re Reading

When Chimps Outperform Humans

As a developmental cognitive neuroscientist, I’m always interested in learning about studies that will inform my work. Recently, I attended the International Conference on Infant Studies where I heard a scientist speak about his research with non-human primates (i.e., monkeys). The studies that he described weren’t just informative—his results stopped me in my tracks! Since I returned home, I have been reading all his papers and I’m excited to share his findings.
In Japan, a scientist by the name of Tetsuro Matsuzawa has been working for 30 years with Ai, a chimpanzee and her offspring. Ai learned at an early age to recognize symbols on a keyboard and to name objects and colors. She and her kids have also been taught numbers and number order. For one number task, these chimpanzees are trained on a touch screen. Numbers from 1 to 9 are presented on a screen in random order and in random places on the screen. The chimps touch the numbers in ascending order to receive a treat. Read more.

This Season, Give a Brick

Get points for originality this holiday season by commemorating a person or event with an engraved brick. When you purchase a brick in Patron’s Plaza at the NRI you’ll make a great impression on your recipient and leave a lasting statement of your support for our innovative research in personalized nutrition, a key to optimal health. Order a brick today to help us find genome-based answers to pressing health issues.

Bonsai Expo This Weekend

NRI Sponsors Unique Art Show

Bonsai aficionados will converge in Kannapolis at the North Carolina Research Campus this weekend, December 6 and 7 for the second annual Winter Silhouette Bonsai Expo. The ancient art of bonsai–the word means to plant in a container–is sometimes best appreciated when the miniature trees lose their leaves, exposing the elaborate branch structure that artists work on for many years. Artists from across the east coast will display more than 50 winter bonsai in this show. The setting is the grand rotunda of the David H. Murdock Research Institute and more than 300 people are expected to attend. Admission is free.
The NRI is pleased to support this show and its founder Steven H. Zeisel, M.D., Ph.D. Dr. Zeisel is director of the UNC NRI as well as an accomplished bonsai artist. Get time and location details here.