Published: June 1, 2018

The Violinist

The Grammy-winning Takács Quartet, based at CU Boulder since 1986, has a new member for the first time in more than a decade. Harumi Rhodes, a CU Boulder assistant professor of violin, has joined the globe-trotting classical ensemble as second violinist. Founding second violinist Károly Schranz retired from the group May 1, after more than 40 years. The quartet, which originated in Hungary in 1975, now has an even number of women and men for the first time.


Heard Around Campus

Imagine 20,000 people trapped in a metal box for days. That’s pretty scary.”

— CU Boulder engineering professor Keith Porter, who recently estimated the number of people likely to get stuck in elevators following a major San Francisco Bay Area earthquake.

A Lover’s Touch

When Pavel Goldstein’s wife, Alexandra, was in labor with their daughter, Alexandra felt less pain while he was holding her hand.

This made Goldstein wonder: “Can one really decrease pain with touch, and if so, how?”

So the CU Boulder postdoctoral researcher devised an experiment, and the results are in: A loving human touch can, indeed, ease physical pain.

In a study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, he and collaborators found that women subjected to mild heat pain reported less discomfort when they held hands with their partners than they did without the benefit of touch.

The study, involving 22 heterosexual couples, showed that holding hands synchronized the couples’ breathing, heart rate and brain waves, which correllated with diminished pain.

“It appears that pain totally interrupts this interpersonal synchronization between couples and touch brings it back,” said Goldstein, of CU Boulder’s Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience Lab.

For additional details, visit CU Boulder Today

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