News & Information

Contested Conventions, European Security, ADHD

Top of Mind with Julie Rose
  • Mar 28, 2016 9:00 pm
  • 1:40:43

Contested Conventions (1:03) Guests: Chris Karpowitz, Ph.D, Professor of Political Science at BYU; Grant Madsen, PhD, Professor of 20th Century American History and Politics  It’s become clear that Texas Senator Ted Cruz will probably not catch up to billionaire Donald Trump in terms of sheer votes this primary season. So Cruz is now pinning his hopes for winning the Republican nomination on a “contested convention,” which Trump says is basically stealing.  European Security (24:20) Guest: Margaret Gilmore, Senior Associate Fellow with Royal United Services Institute  The investigation into terror attacks in Belgium widened over the weekend to Italy where police arrested a suspect thought to have provided false identification documents to the Islamic State militants, allowing them to evade authorities while plotting attacks in Belgium and France.  A picture is emerging of missed opportunities and poor communication between security agencies as the attackers moved throughout Europe. At least one of the brothers who blew himself up in the Brussels attack had been in Turkey last summer trying to cross over into Syria to join Islamist militants. Turkish authorities stopped him and deported him to the Netherlands. Belgian officials knew about this, but somehow the would-be suicide bomber was able to get back into Belgium and become involved in the terrorist plot.  ADHD (39:02) Guest: Michael Kofler, Ph.D, Assistant Professor and Director of Children’s Learning Clinic at Florida State University  One out of every ten kids in the US today has been diagnosed with Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder, according to CDC data. Which means there’s usually at least one in every classroom, struggling to sit still, making it a challenge for the teacher trying to maintain order.  Researchers at the Children’s Learning Clinic at Florida State University have uncovered new insight into just why those kids fidget so much and how it might be beneficial to let them keep doing it when working through complex problems.  Syrian Agriculture and Peace (51:16) Guest: Ghada Ahmed, Researcher with the Duke University Center on Globalization, Governance & Competitiveness  Embattled Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad is celebrating a military victory – his forces regained control of the ancient city of Palmyra from the so-called Islamic State which took the city last summer. Progress in a brutal war like this is often measured in territory: who controls which cities, which roads. But gaining power in Syria really boils down to who controls the oil, the water and the bread.  Parent Previews (1:05:40) Guest: Rod Gustafson, Film Reviewer at  We discuss “Batman vs. Superman” and “My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2.”  Tech Transfer: Alzheimer’s Biomarkers (1:18:30) Guests: Steven Graves, Ph.D, Professor of Biochemistry at BYU; Mike Alder, BYU’s Technology Transfer Office  As baby boomers age, doctors are expecting a big jump in the number of people with Alzheimer’s and dementia. Some estimates say the prevalence of Alzheimer’s will triple in the next 30 years. We tend to think of any chronic memory loss as being Alzheimer’s, but it’s actually a very specific disease involving degeneration of brain tissue that happens to also be very difficult to diagnose. Typically, a doctor will administer memory tests over many years before diagnosing Alzheimer’s disease. They may do a probe of the brain to see if the damage resembles what we know about Alzheimer’s. But the only sure way to know if that’s really what’s causing the dementia is to do an autopsy of the brain once the patient has died.   Researchers at BYU have hit upon a simple blood test that could improve the accuracy of an Alzheimer’s diagnosis before death. And could also help improve the accuracy of clinical studies looking for drugs to treat the disease.