- Press Release Distribution

Recent UCLA computer grad constructs “Crown Jewel of Cryptography”

Aayush Jain receives ACM Doctoral Dissertation Award for dissertation on the feasibility of mathematical software obfuscation

Recent UCLA computer grad constructs “Crown Jewel of Cryptography”
( ACM, the Association for Computing Machinery, today announced that Aayush Jain receives the 2022 ACM Doctoral Dissertation Award for his dissertation “Indistinguishability Obfuscation from Well-Studied Assumptions,” which established the feasibility of mathematically rigorous software obfuscation from well-studied hardness conjectures.

The central goal of software obfuscation is to transform source code to make it unintelligible without altering what it computes.  Additional conditions may be added, such as requiring the transformed code to perform similarly, or even indistinguishably, from the original.  As a software security mechanism, it is essential that software obfuscation have a firm mathematical foundation.

The mathematical object that Jain’s thesis constructs, indistinguishability obfuscation, is considered a theoretical “master tool” in the context of cryptography—not only in helping achieve long-desired cryptographic goals such as functional encryption, but also in expanding the scope of the field of cryptography itself. For example, indistinguishability obfuscation aids in goals related to software security that were previously entirely in the domain of software engineering.

Jain’s dissertation was awarded the Best Paper Award at the ACM Symposium on Theory of Computing (ACM STOC 2021) and was the subject of an article in Quanta Magazine titled “Scientists Achieve Crown Jewel of Cryptography.”

Jain is an Assistant Professor at Carnegie Mellon University. He is interested in theoretical and applied cryptography and its connections with related areas of theoretical computer science. Jain received a BTech in Electrical Engineering, and an MTech in Information and Communication Technology from the Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi. He received a PhD in Computer Science from the University of California, Los Angeles.

Honorable Mentions
Honorable Mentions for the 2022 ACM Doctoral Dissertation Award go to Alane Suhr whose PhD was earned at Cornell University, and Conrad Watt, who earned his PhD at the University of Cambridge.

Suhr's dissertation “Reasoning and Learning in Interactive Natural Language Systems,” was recognized for formulating and designing algorithms for continual language learning in collaborative interactions, and designing methods to reason about context-dependent language meaning. Suhr’s dissertation made transformative contributions in several areas of Natural Language Processing (NLP).

Suhr is an Assistant Professor at the University of California, Berkeley. Suhr’sresearch is focused on natural language processing, machine learning, and computer vision. Suhr received a BS in Computer Science and Engineering from Ohio State University, as well as a PhD in Computer Science from Cornell University.

Watt’s dissertation, “Mechanising and Evolving the Formal Semantics of WebAssembly: the Web’s New Low-Level Language,” establishes a mechanized semantics for WebAssembly and defines its concurrency model. The model will underpin current and future web engineering. His dissertation is considered a stand-out example of developing and using fully rigorous mechanized semantics to directly affect and improve the designs of major pieces of our industrial computational infrastructure.

Watt is a Research Fellow (postdoctoral) at the University of Cambridge, where he focuses on mechanized formal verification, concurrency, and the WebAssembly language. He received a MEng in Computer Science from Imperial College London and a PhD in Computer Science from the University of Cambridge.

About the ACM Doctoral Dissertation Award
Presented annually to the author(s) of the best doctoral dissertation(s) in computer science and engineering. The Doctoral Dissertation Award is accompanied by a prize of $20,000, and the Honorable Mention Award is accompanied by a prize totaling $10,000. Winning dissertations will be published in the ACM Digital Library as part of the ACM Books Series.

About ACM
ACM, the Association for Computing Machinery is the world’s largest educational and scientific computing society, uniting computing educators, researchers and professionals to inspire dialogue, share resources and address the field’s challenges. ACM strengthens the computing profession’s collective voice through strong leadership, promotion of the highest standards, and recognition of technical excellence. ACM supports the professional growth of its members by providing opportunities for life-long learning, career development, and professional networking.




[Attachments] See images for this press release:
Recent UCLA computer grad constructs “Crown Jewel of Cryptography” Recent UCLA computer grad constructs “Crown Jewel of Cryptography” 2


Meet the 2023 ASBMB Advocacy Training Program delegates

The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology announced the 12 delegates who will participate in the society’s Advocacy Training Program this summer. The ATP is a three-month summer externship that provides hands-on science policy and advocacy training and experience. After completing the educational component of the program, delegates will visit Capitol Hill to meet with policymakers in 2024. The ASBMB public affairs department runs the program. The society has trained 42 ASBMB members in four ATP cohorts, providing the foundational knowledge, skills ...

Does having Alzheimer’s genes increase your risk of epilepsy?

MINNEAPOLIS – People with a genetic predisposition for Alzheimer’s disease may have an increased risk of epilepsy and people with a certain type of epilepsy may have an increased risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease, according to a study published in the May 24, 2023, online issue of Neurology®, the medical journal of the American Academy of Neurology. “Our research found that not only are people with Alzheimer’s disease more likely to develop epilepsy, but also that those with focal epilepsy, which accounts for ...

New study shows 1 in 5 “healthy” individuals actually have the metabolism of a prediabetic

Scientists at Klick Labs have developed a new way to catch the earliest signs the human body is failing to control blood glucose levels, before it reaches prediabetic levels in patients.   In findings published today in Mayo Clinic Proceedings: Digital Health, researchers outlined a new method of analysis that flags a precursor to prediabetes called impaired glucose homeostasis (IGH). When they applied their patented mathematical method to data obtained from continuous glucose monitors (CGMs), scientists found about one in five study participants, considered healthy by medical standards, actually had glucose metabolism similar to those with prediabetes.   “For people ...

New UCI-led research shows people who live to be 90+ with superior thinking skills are resilient to Alzheimer’s pathology in their brains

New UCI-led research shows people who live to be 90+ with superior thinking skills are resilient to Alzheimer’s pathology in their brains
Irvine, CA – May 24, 2023 – A University of California, Irvine-led team of researchers have discovered that the oldest-old, those who live to be 90+ and have superior cognitive skills, have similar levels of brain pathology as Alzheimer’s patients, however, they also have less brain pathology of other neurodegenerative diseases that cause memory and thinking problems. The study, “Superior Global Cognition in Oldest-Old is Associated with Resistance to Neurodegenerative Pathologies: Results from the 90+ Study,” was published in the Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease. “People ...

Survival pathway and therapeutic target in metastatic colorectal and pancreatic cancer

Survival pathway and therapeutic target in metastatic colorectal and pancreatic cancer
“Recent findings suggest that neurodegenerative and cardiovascular diseases may have overlapping etiologies [...]” BUFFALO, NY- May 24, 2023 – A new research paper was published in Aging (listed by MEDLINE/PubMed as "Aging (Albany NY)" and "Aging-US" by Web of Science) Volume 15, Issue 9, entitled, “Exogenous exposures shape genetic predisposition to lipids, Alzheimer’s, and coronary heart disease in the MLXIPL gene locus.” In this new study, researchers Yury Loika, Elena Loiko, Fan Feng, Eric Stallard, Anatoliy I. Yashin, Konstantin Arbeev, Allison L. Kuipers, Mary F. Feitosa, Michael A. Province, and Alexander ...

Researchers identify strong T-cell response in first-in-human nanoparticle HIV vaccine

SEATTLE – MAY 24, 2023 – Researchers from Fred Hutchinson Cancer Center in Seattle, Scripps Research in La Jolla, California, IAVI and other collaborating institutions have characterized robust T-cell responses in volunteers participating in the IAVI G001 Phase 1 clinical trial to test the safety and immune response of a self-assembling nanoparticle HIV vaccine. Their work, published in Science Translational Medicine, signals a major step toward development of a vaccine approach to end the HIV/AIDS ...

Clinicians supporting cancer patients with taste loss need educational materials and training

AMHERST, Mass. – While an overwhelming majority of cancer patients experience taste disruption from their disease or treatment, they have consistently reported a lack of support from their doctors about this troubling side effect, according to research. A new study by the University of Massachusetts Amherst, focusing for the first time on the issue from the cancer clinicians’ point of view, reveals not a lack of concern about their patients’ taste loss but a lack of access to educational materials, ...

Epigenetic landscape modulates pioneer transcription factor binding

Epigenetic landscape modulates pioneer transcription factor binding
(Memphis, Tenn.—May 24, 2023) Like thread tightly wrapped around a spool, DNA is wrapped around histones and packaged into structures called nucleosomes. Scientists at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital are exploring how a type of transcription factor called a pioneer transcription factor accesses DNA even when it is tightly wound. Their work revealed how the epigenetic landscape influences transcription factor binding. Problems with transcription have been implicated in numerous cancers, so this more detailed understanding of the process may aid in developing future therapeutics. The study ...

A popular compostable plastic doesn’t break down in the ocean

A popular compostable plastic doesn’t break down in the ocean
A widely used compostable plastic persists unchanged in marine environments for at least 14 months, according to a new study in the open-access journal PLOS ONE by Sarah-Jeanne Royer and colleagues from Scripps Institution of Oceanography at the University of California, San Diego. The study highlights the distinction between textile materials that can be composted in a controlled, industrial setting (PLA), and the ones that can undergo biodegradation in natural environments (cellulose-based textiles). The accumulation and persistence of oil-based plastic waste ...

Physical activity linked to higher pain tolerance

Physical activity linked to higher pain tolerance
A new analysis of data from more than 10,000 adults shows that people who were physically active had higher pain tolerance than those who were sedentary, and that those with a higher level of activity had a higher level of pain tolerance. Anders Årnes of the University Hospital of North Norway, Tromsø, and colleagues present these findings in the open-access journal PLOS ONE on May 24, 2023. Prior research has suggested the possibility that a habit of engaging in a higher level of physical activity might help ease or prevent chronic pain by boosting pain tolerance. However, most studies on this topic have been small or focused on narrow groups of people. To help clarify the ...


Making table tennis accessible for blind players #Acoustics23

Twice daily electrical stimulation may boost mental processes in Alzheimer’s disease

Young age at first menstrual cycle linked to heightened diabetes risk in mid-life

State abortion access key factor in future US doctors’ training (residency) choices

Tobacco related annual medical spend of US Minorities who smoke double that of White peers

Singing in the rain: Why the bundengan sounds better wet #Acoustics23

Limitations of asteroid crater lakes as climate archives

AAAS announces addition of Biomaterials Research to Science Partner Journal program

Picking up good vibrations: The surprising physics of the didjeridu #Acoustics23

Bacteria's mucus maneuvers: Study reveals how snot facilitates infection

Shuqing Xu receives ERC Consolidator Grant for his research on the evolution in ecological communities in response to climate change

Study of sourdough starter microbiomes to boost bread quality and safety

UT receives National Institute of Justice awards for forensics research

Newly identified biomarkers may detect early cognitive decline via blood test

Researchers predict climate change-driven reduction in beneficial plant microbes

Addicted to your phone? New tool identifies overuse of digital media

International consensus report on gaps and opportunities for the clinical translation of precision diabetes medicine

Depression, constipation, and urinary tract infections may precede MS diagnosis

Chemists create organic molecules in a rainbow of colors

NCCN summit navigates solutions for financial and other cancer-related hardships

Incarcerated women punished at higher rates for minor infractions than men, UTEP study shows

Conference on microplastics in water: characterization, cure and prevention

Dorothee Dormann receives an ERC Consolidator Grant to support her research into neurodegenerative diseases

Reducing the energy consumption of software: Sebastian Erdweg receives ERC Consolidator Grant

Study finds plant nurseries are exacerbating the climate-driven spread of 80% of invasive species

Jefferson Lab site grows with addition of Applied Research Center

Texas A&M receives $1.8 million NIH grant to support bone health in people with down syndrome

Membrane raft redox signaling contributes to visfatin-induced inflammation and kidney damage

New study highlights COVID-19’s adaptive strategy for infection

Type 1 diabetes: B cell-derived natural antibodies suppress autoimmune pathogenesis

[] Recent UCLA computer grad constructs “Crown Jewel of Cryptography”
Aayush Jain receives ACM Doctoral Dissertation Award for dissertation on the feasibility of mathematical software obfuscation