What were the University of Arizona’s top stories for 2017?

Above: "We've kept the tuition increase as modest as possible and we will continue to pursue operational efficiencies to fund the initiatives identified in our next strategic plan," said UA President Robert C. Robbins. Business News | 19 Dec, 2017 |

From the installation of a new president to the recovery of a priceless art masterpiece, it has been a remarkable year at the University of Arizona. Here are 10 UA-related stories that made a major impact in 2017:

After 31 Years, Stolen ‘Woman-Ochre’ Returns

“Woman-Ochre,” a painting by abstract expressionist Willem de Kooning, was stolen from the UA Museum of Art in 1985. More than three decades later, the painting was discovered in Silver City, New Mexico, and returned to its home at UAMA.

Hands Gather on Deck as UA’s Asteroid Explorer Buzzes Earth

NASA’s OSIRIS-REx spacecraft made a close flyby of Earth before shooting toward the asteroid Bennu, and skywatchers had the opportunity to wave goodbye to the probe as it passed overhead.

Robbins Era Begins With a Full Day at UA

Dr. Robert C. Robbins began his tenure as the UA’s 22nd president on June 1. In his remarks to the Arizona Board of Regents on Nov. 17, Robbins said that the UA’s standing as a top-tier research university and its strengths in the arts and humanities, science and technology, interdisciplinary study and student engagement will serve as a springboard for its next phase.

UA Scientists and the Curious Case of the Warped Kuiper Belt

The plane of the solar system is warped in the outer reaches of the Kuiper Belt, signaling the presence of an unknown Mars-to-Earth-mass planetary object far beyond Pluto, according to new research from the UA. 

Asteroid Flyby to Help NASA Observation

For the first time, an actual, but harmless, space rock was used for an observational campaign to test NASA’s network of observatories and scientists who work with planetary defense. 

Treatment of Pain Gets the Green Light

A study by UA researchers revealed that rats with neuropathic pain that were bathed in green LED showed more tolerance for thermal and tactile stimulus. A clinical trial involving people suffering from fibromyalgia is underway. 

Chunks of Glass, Made Into a Mirror, Will Probe Stars

At the UA, tools designed to tackle tomorrow’s challenges, such as scanning alien planets for signs of life, begin as chunks of glistening glass tucked inside a cardboard box. And now five mirror segments have been cast for the Giant Magellan Telescope. 

$30M Gift Announced for UA’s Biosphere 2

As the world’s population nears 8 billion, a $30 million endowment from Edward P. Bass will enable Biosphere 2 to address some of the century’s most critical questions in food, water and energy security. 

Major Advance in Snakebite Treatment

Giving hope that his treatment may work in humans, the UA’s Dr. Vance G. Nielsen has published results showing that his carbon monoxide-iron-based therapy can inhibit snake venom’s effects for up to an hour in animals. The treatment eventually could be delivered with a device similar to an EpiPen autoinjector and stocked on ambulances and in first-aid kits. 

Bouldering Envisioned as New Treatment for Depression

UA researcher Eva-Maria Stelzer and her colleagues found the social, mental and physical endurance of bouldering could be successful psychotherapy for treating depression in adults. 

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