News In Brief

Former UCI Professor Dies Missed By Many

Former UC Irvine professor Joie Pierce Jones died at age 72 on June 23 after several years of declining health.
Jones was appointed as a professor of radiological sciences at UCI in 1977. During his time at the university, he was involved in new developments of ultrasonic imaging and tissue characterization, acoustical microscopy and non-contact ultrasonic imaging.
Aside from his many achievements at UCI, Jones also served on President Jimmy Carter’s scientific advisory board. He had a similar role during Obama’s first campaign and was also an advisor to the Obama administration on medicine and energy.
Although Jones was a passionate and nationally-recognized scientist, he also had a great interest in the arts. He served as the founding president for the UCI Theater Guild and was the president of the Laguna Beach Chamber Music Society.
In the past few years, Jones also looked into alternative and complementary medical modalities, and the connections between Western and Eastern medicines. He made landmark discoveries about the mechanisms and nature of acupuncture, which led to experiments that established the healing power of subtle energy.
Jones was regarded as a renaissance man by many who knew him and will be greatly missed. A memorial service will be held later this year — date and location to be announced.

Study Shows Sunlight Can Prevent Sickness

A study recently done at UC Irvine revealed that the level of Vitamin D in the human body fluctuates according to the time of year and that this fact can have serious health implications. The level of Vitamin D is highest during summer months and lowest during winter months.
The study which was done by UC Irvine and Mayo-Clinic researchers revealed that differing levels of Vitamin D in the population was due to differing amounts of sunlight exposure by the general population. Irvine and Mayo-Clinic researchers analyzed 3.4 million blood samples taken between 2006 and 2011 at different times of the year and saw that Vitamin D levels are highest in the American population in August and that they are lowest in February on average.
According to associate professor for public health Andrew Noymer, the correlation between Vitamin D levels and season has been known for a long time but never tested to the extent of the recent study.
The correlation between the season and the amount of Vitamin D is due to differing amounts of sunlight during the day. The body naturally produces Vitamin D during the day when a person is exposed to UV rays as well as that which is taken if from food.
The disparity in Vitamin D levels between winter and summer may explain why the flu is prevalent during the winter as it is believed that Vitamin D helps improve a person’s immune system and prevent illnesses such as colds and the flu. Vitamin D is also believed to prevent bone diseases like osteoporosis and even help cure depression.
For those that are unable to go outside for medical reasons, doctors recommend eating food high in Vitamin D or taking Vitamin D supplements.
The authors of the study encouraged others to get their Vitamin D levels checked and not assume that they have enough Vitamin D in their system because of the date.

VDC Stabbing Still Under Investigation

A UCI student was stabbed during an altercation at a party on June 14th at approximately 2 a.m. in a Vista Del Campo apartment. The fight was allegedly started because of a confrontation over a mutual friend. Dozens of police officers and paramedics were on the scene as partygoers dispersed. The suspect, 22-year-old Krist Porayanee, was on the loose shortly after the incident. UCI police quickly released a zotALERT with the description of the suspect, asking people to call if he is sighted. The victim, unnamed, was rushed to the hospital and pronounced in stable condition later that day. Currently, investigators are working on interviewing witnesses, as there were many attendees who were present at the scene of the incident. Though the arrest and investigation is pending, UCIPD remarked positively on the progress of this case. Updates will be provided accordingly.

Friend of Court Appeal Filed Against Irvine 11

Three recent friend-of-the-court appeals were filed with the California Appellate Court regarding the Irvine 11 trial in 2010. The students attended the speech of Israeli Ambassador Oren in the wake of the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, and used their presence as a way of protesting Israeli action directed towards Palestine. The appeal asks the Orange County Superior Court appellate panel to uphold the misdemeanor convictions for the 10 Muslim students who conspired and attempted to interrupt the speech at UC Irvine. The American Jewish Committee, the Jewish Council for Public Affairs and the Jewish National Fund have filed the appeals on the ground that “the state may control conduct when that conduct interferes with the exercise of others’ freedoms of speech or assembly.”

Acclaimed Drama Professor Dies At 73

Professor emeritus of drama in the Claire Trevor School of the Arts, Dudley Knight, died of a heart attack on Thursday, June 27.
Knight spent 40 years as a voice, speech and dialect teacher and voice director for professional theater. Aside from teaching others about the craft of the arts, he also played major roles in the American Conservatory Theater, South Coast Repertory, the Mark Taper Forum and the Utah Shakespeare Festival.
Fellow theatre department professor and friend, Annie Loui praised Knight for his “splendid humor.” An accomplished Shakespearean, Knight tackled such versatile roles as Falstaff, King Lear and countless others. Loui summed up Knight thusly: “He was the best voice and speech teacher I’ve ever worked with and on top of that, he was a funny, erudite man whose extensive knowledge was shared with generosity and playfulness.”