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Science current events and breaking science news on health, climate change, nanotechnology, the environment, stem cells, global warming, current cancer research, physics, biology, computer science, astronomy, endangered species and alternative energy.

In Alzheimer's mice, memory restored with cancer drug

Memory and as well as connections between brain cells were restored in mice with a model of Alzheimer's given an experimental cancer drug, Yale School of Medicine researchers reported in the journal Annals of Neurology.




A risk score for chronic kidney disease can inform choice of HIV medications

Both traditional and HIV-related risk factors can predict the likelihood of developing chronic kidney disease (CKD), according to a study published this week in PLOS Medicine.

Lizard activity levels can help scientists predict environmental change

Spring is here and ectotherms, or animals dependent on external sources to raise their body temperature, are becoming more active.

Two-dimensional dirac materials: Structure, properties, and rarity

Graphene, a two-dimensional (2D) honeycomb sheet composed of carbon atoms, has attracted intense interests worldwide because of its outstanding properties and promising prospects in both basic and applied science.

Tiny bird's migration route includes nonstop Atlantic crossing

By outfitting tiny birds with even tinier tracking "backpacks," an international research team - led by a University of Guelph professor -- has confirmed what many scientists had long suspected: the blackpoll warblers annual migration route includes a three-day, nonstop flight over the Atlantic Ocean.

New study highlights the value of local knowledge in recovering endangered species

A new study highlights the value of local knowledge in recovering endangered species. The collaborative research, co-authored by NOAA Fisheries, the University of Washington, and researchers from the University of Alaska, Fairbanks, is specifically designed to incorporate the knowledge of recreational anglers into recovery planning for three rockfish species in Puget Sound--bocaccio, canary rockfish, and yelloweye rockfish, each of which was listed under the Endangered Species Act (ESA) in 2010.

People in MTV docusoaps are more ideal than real

More midriff, cleavage and muscle is seen in MTV's popular television docusoaps such as The Real World, Jersey Shore or Laguna Beach than in the average American household.

How diverse is your social network? The answer may reveal something about your values

A new study out of Wellesley College sheds light on the role of beliefs about the value of diversity in fostering attitudinally diverse friendships.

Planck: An 'unfocused' eye that sees the big picture

"Planck detects, then Herschel analyzes". That's how Gianfranco De Zotti, professor at the International School for Advanced Studies (SISSA) in Trieste and at INAF-Astronomical Observatory of Padova, summarizes the rationale of the study just published in Astronomy & Astrophysics.

Chronic loneliness in older adults leads to more doctors' office visits, UGA study finds

Experiences of loneliness and social isolation can lead to increased health care use among older adults, according to new research from the University of Georgia College of Public Health.

Study: Phone counseling reduces pain, disability after back surgery

Research by Johns Hopkins scientists suggests that having a short series of phone conversations with trained counselors can substantially boost recovery and reduce pain in patients after spinal surgery.

Stereotypes persist that class and privilege determine intellect and success

A meritocracy holds that if you work hard enough, you can succeed in life, regardless of race, religion, gender or social status.

Internet searches create illusion of personal knowledge, research finds

Searching the Internet for information may make people feel smarter than they actually are, according to new research published by the American Psychological Association.

Researchers unravel mechanism that plays key role in sexual differentiation of brain

During prenatal development, the brains of most animals, including humans, develop specifically male or female characteristics.

Astronomers discover likely precursors of galaxy clusters we see today

By combining observations of the distant Universe made with ESA's Herschel and Planck space observatories, cosmologists have discovered what could be the precursors of the vast clusters of galaxies that we see today.

St. Gallen 2015: Latest multidisciplinary research in early breast cancer

The latest challenges of early breast cancer research include refining classification and predicting treatment responses, according to a report on the 14th St Gallen International Breast Cancer Consensus Conference, published in ecancermedicalscience.

Online illusion: Unplugged, we really aren't that smart

The Internet brings the world to our fingertips, but it turns out that getting information online also has a startling effect on our brains: We feel a lot smarter than we really are, according to a Yale-led study published March 30 in the Journal of Experimental Psychology.

Tiny songbird discovered to migrate non-stop, 1,500 miles over the Atlantic

For more than 50 years, scientists had tantalizing clues suggesting that a tiny, boreal forest songbird known as the blackpoll warbler departs each fall from New England and eastern Canada to migrate nonstop in a direct line over the Atlantic Ocean toward South America, but proof was hard to come by.

Discovery of 2 new species of primitive fishes

Saurichthys is a predatory fish characterized by a long thin body and a sharply pointed snout with numerous teeth.

Why slimy cheats don't win

Darwin's evolutionary theory predicts survival of the fittest. So why do different survival tactics co-exist, if evolution should always favour the winning strategy?

100-million-year-old scale insect practiced brood care

Scientists at the University of Bonn, together with colleagues from China, UK and Poland, have described the oldest evidence of brood care in insects: it is in a female scale insect with her young that is encased in amber as a fossil.

Worm lizards dispersed by 'rafting' over oceans, not continental drift

Tiny, burrowing reptiles known as worm lizards became widespread long after the breakup of the continents, leading scientists to conclude that they must have dispersed by rafting across oceans soon after the extinction of the dinosaurs, rather than by continental drift as previously thought.

Keeping hungry jumbos at bay

Until now electric fences and trenches have proved to be the most effective way of protecting farms and villages from night time raids by hungry elephants. But researchers think they may have come up with another solution - the recorded sound of angry predators.

Restoring IL-17 may treat skin infections related to chronic alcohol consumption

Alcoholism takes a toll on every aspect of a person's life, including skin problems. Now, a new research report appearing in the April 2015 issue of the Journal of Leukocyte Biology, helps explain why this happens and what might be done to address it. In the report, researchers used mice show how chronic alcohol intake compromises the skin's protective immune response.

Premature aging of stem cell telomeres, not inflammation, linked to emphysema

Lung diseases like emphysema and pulmonary fibrosis are common among people with malfunctioning telomeres, the "caps" or ends of chromosomes. Now, researchers from Johns Hopkins say they have discovered what goes wrong and why.

Atmospheric energy escaped from the Tibetan Plateau

The increase of green-house gases in the atmosphere reduces outgoing radiation and thus causes global warming.

Physicists shed light on mysterious tongue condition

Physicists from Israel have shed light on the intricate dynamics underpinning a mysterious tongue condition that has been puzzling the medical community for decades.

Smartphone face recognition 'improved' by copying the brain

Face recognition security on smartphones can be significantly improved if users store an 'average' photo of themselves, according to new research by scientists at the University of York.

Scientists discover elusive secret of how continents formed

An international research team, led by a Virginia Tech geoscientist, has revealed information about how continents were generated on Earth more than 2.5 billion years ago -- and how those processes have continued within the last 70 million years to profoundly affect the planet's life and climate.

Poor behavior linked to time spent playing video games, not the games played

Children who play video games for more than three hours a day are more likely to be hyperactive, get involved in fights and not be interested in school, says a new study.

Can caffeine be used to treat or prevent Alzheimer's disease?

The proposed link between caffeine and reductions in the beta amyloid plaque accumulation characteristic of Alzheimer's disease (AD) suggest a possible role for caffeine in AD treatment.

Picturing peanut contamination with near infrared hyperspectral imaging

Study the label of almost any food product and you're likely to see the rather vague warning "May contain peanuts" somewhere on there, unless of course it's a product that definitely does contain peanuts.

Soil organic matter susceptible to climate change

Soil organic matter, long thought to be a semi-permanent storehouse for ancient carbon, may be much more vulnerable to climate change than previously thought.

Methane monitoring method reveals high levels in Pennsylvania stream

A new stream-based monitoring system recently discovered high levels of methane in a Pennsylvania stream near the site of a reported Marcellus shale gas well leak, according to researchers at Penn State and the U.S. Geological Survey.

Faulty modeling studies led to overstated predictions of Ebola outbreak

Frequently used approaches to understanding and forecasting emerging epidemics--including the West African Ebola outbreak--can lead to big errors that mask their own presence, according to a University of Michigan ecologist and his colleagues.

The nature of nurture is all about your mother, study says

When it comes to survival of the fittest, it's all about your mother - at least in the squirrel world.

'Amazing' physics demos to keep practical science alive

With school students in England bracing themselves for new-style GCSE science exams that are based entirely on written tests, Physics World has teamed up with Neil Downie to put together "five amazing physics demonstrations" that highlight the value and importance of keeping experimentation at the centre of the science classroom.

Typhoons rain away wrath

Accurately anticipating an approaching typhoon's destructive force makes all the difference in advance preparations and as a consequence, the cost in lives.

The 'intraterrestrials': New viruses discovered in ocean depths

The intraterrestrials, they might be called. Strange creatures live in the deep sea, but few are odder than the viruses that inhabit deep ocean methane seeps and prey on single-celled microorganisms called archaea.

Bacteria play an important role in the long term storage of carbon in the ocean

The ocean is a large reservoir of dissolved organic molecules, and many of these molecules are stable against microbial utilization for hundreds to thousands of years.

The rapid rise of human language

At some point, probably 50,000 to 100,000 years ago, humans began talking to one another in a uniquely complex form.

Protein may improve liver regeneration

Researchers at UC Davis have illuminated an important distinction between mice and humans: how human livers heal.

How are ordinary consumers transforming the fashion business?

One of the most important shifts of the 21st century is the ability of consumers to participate in markets they love such as music and fashion.

Cancer prevention efforts in the US a mixed bag

While there has been substantial progress in some cancer control efforts in the past several decades, like reductions in smoking and increased utilization of cancer screening, progress in some areas is lagging, according to a new report.

Blood test predicts severity of peanut and seafood allergies

A new blood test promises to predict which people will have severe allergic reactions to foods according to a new study led by Mount Sinai researchers and published online today in the The Annals of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology.

Memory immune cells that screen intruders as they enter lymph nodes

Australian scientists have discovered a new population of 'memory' immune cells, throwing light on what the body does when it sees a microbe for the second time. This insight, and others like it, will enable the development of more targeted and effective vaccines.

Soft, energy-efficient robotic wings

Dielectric elastomers are novel materials for making actuators or motors with soft and lightweight properties that can undergo large active deformations with high-energy conversion efficiencies. This has made dielectric elastomers popular for creating devices such as robotic hands, soft robots, tunable lenses and pneumatic valves -- and possibly flapping robotic wings.

Bullying by students with disabilities reduced by social-emotional learning

Bullying perpetration decreased by 20 percent over a three-year period among youths with disabilities who participated in a social and emotional learning program, a new study found.

Researchers identify 'beige' fat-burning cells in humans

For the first time, a research team, led by a UC San Francisco biologist, has isolated energy-burning "beige" fat from adult humans, which is known to be able to convert unhealthy white fat into healthy brown fat. The scientists also found new genetic markers of this beige fat.

Number of childhood cancer survivors increasing, most have morbidities

The prevalence of childhood cancer survivors is estimated to have increased, and the majority of those who have survived five or more years beyond diagnosis may have at least one chronic health condition.

The rise of the takeaway

The number of takeaway food outlets has risen substantially over the past two decades, with a large increase seen in areas of socioeconomic disadvantage, according to a study carried out across Norfolk by researchers at the University of Cambridge.

Daily dam releases on Massachusetts' Deerfield River reduce downstream flows

In the first-of-its-kind study of the environmental effects of hydropeaking, that is releasing water at hydropower dams to meet peak daily electricity demand, two University of Massachusetts Amherst researchers say their unexpected findings suggest that about 10 percent of released water may be permanently lost, making that water unavailable to downstream users and wildlife.

ActiveGuard mattress liners reduce bed bugs' ability to lay eggs, study finds

Products that claim to control bed bugs have been on the market for years. Some work, and some don't.

Study: Ads in free mobile apps have hidden costs for both users and developers

There's no such thing as free - especially with smartphone apps, according to a new study.

Researchers map seasonal greening in US forests, fields, and urban areas

Using the assessment tool ForWarn, U.S. Forest Service researchers can monitor the growth and development of vegetation that signals winter's end and the awakening of a new growing season.

Brittle bone disease: Drug research offers hope

New research at the University of Michigan offers evidence that a drug being developed to treat osteoporosis may also be useful for treating osteogenesis imperfecta or brittle bone disease, a rare but potentially debilitating bone disorder that that is present from birth.

Discovering missing body parts of ancient fossils

Certain specimens of the fossil Dickinsonia are incomplete because ancient currents lifted them from the sea floor, a team of researchers led by paleontologists at the University of California, Riverside has found.

3-D neural structure guided with biocompatible nanofiber scaffolds and hydrogels

Damage to neural tissue is typically permanent and causes lasting disability in patients, but a new approach has recently been discovered that holds incredible potential to reconstruct neural tissue at high resolution in three dimensions.

Better traffic signals can cut greenhouse gas emissions

Sitting in traffic during rush hour is not just frustrating for drivers; it also adds unnecessary greenhouse gas emissions to the atmosphere.

Folic acid may help elderly weather heat waves

Supplemental folic acid can enhance blood vessel dilation in older adults, according to Penn State researchers, suggesting that folic acid supplements may be an inexpensive alternative for helping older adults to increase skin blood flow during heat waves and reduce cardiovascular events.

Better method for forecasting hurricane season

A better method for predicting the number of hurricanes in an upcoming season has been developed by a team of University of Arizona atmospheric scientists.

Getting the message across: Can active symbols on road signs save lives?

If you're traveling at 60 miles per hour, just a few milliseconds can mean the difference between life and death when you need to come to a quick stop.

Mighty microexons take center stage in shaping of the brain

Complex brain disorders, such as autism or schizophrenia, still puzzle scientists because their causes lie hidden in early events of brain development, which are still poorly understood.

Will the Affordable Care Act eliminate health disparities?

Massachusetts' health reform may be a crystal ball for researchers and policymakers in forecasting the potential impact of the Affordable Care Act.

Cooling massive objects to the quantum ground state

Cooling of macroscopic and mesoscopic objects to the quantum ground states are of great interests not only for fundamental study of quantum theory but also for the broad applications in quantum information processing and high-precision metrology.

Poses of power are less powerful than we thought

Hands pressed to the hips or perhaps leaning back with arms crossed behind the head are typical poses of power.

South-east England ahead on genetic tests for inherited eye conditions

New research from The University of Manchester published in the Journal of Community Genetics reveals a stark variation in genetic testing services for inherited eye disease in England.

Researchers see significant reduction in fatal car crashes after increase in alcohol taxes

Increasing state alcohol taxes could prevent thousands of deaths a year from car crashes, say University of Florida Health researchers, who found alcohol-related motor vehicle crashes decreased after taxes on beer, wine and spirits went up in Illinois.

University of Houston researchers build brain-machine interface to control prosthetic hand

A research team from the University of Houston has created an algorithm that allowed a man to grasp a bottle and other objects with a prosthetic hand, powered only by his thoughts.

Simplifying SNP discovery in the cotton genome

The term "single-nucleotide polymorphism" (SNP) refers to a single base change in DNA sequence between two individuals.

Mice sing like songbirds to woo mates

Male mice sing surprisingly complex songs to seduce females, sort of like songbirds, according to a new Duke study appearing April 1 in the Frontiers of Behavioral Neuroscience.

Wobbly no more

Children love to build things. Often half the fun for them is building something and then knocking it down.

Paracetamol is ineffective for lower back pain

Paracetamol is not effective in the treatment of spinal pain and provides negligible benefits for osteoarthritis, according to a study published in The BMJ today.

'Gold standard' for pain relief after shoulder surgery may not be 24 karat

Around 10,000 patients undergo shoulder surgery in Ontario every year and most go home the same day. Since it's quite a painful procedure, a lot of effort goes into making sure patients can manage their pain while at home recovering.

'Religiously integrated' psychotherapy is effective for depression

For chronically ill patients with major depression, an approach to cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) that incorporates patients' religious beliefs is at least as effective as conventional CBT, suggests a study in the April issue of The Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease.

Utah student examines case of labor activist Joe Hill 100 years after execution

The case is a staple in many history classes: In 1914 labor activist Joe Hill was arrested, tried and convicted for the murder of a retired policeman and grocer, John G. Morrison.

Light-powered gyroscope is world's smallest: Promises a powerful spin on navigation

A pair of light waves - one zipping clockwise the other counterclockwise around a microscopic track - may hold the key to creating the world's smallest gyroscope: one a fraction of the width of a human hair.

Score! Video gamers may learn visual tasks more quickly

Many studies show that video gamers perform better than non-gamers on certain visual tasks, like managing distractors and identifying targets, but a small new Brown University study provides gamers with some cognitive bonus points.

Domestic violence deters contraception

Domestic violence takes many forms. The control of a woman's reproductive choices by her partner is one of them.

Shift to gay, lesbian, bisexual identities in early adulthood tied to depressive symptoms

People whose sexual identities changed toward same-sex attraction in early adulthood reported more symptoms of depression in a nationwide survey than those whose sexual orientations did not change or changed in the opposite direction.

UT Dallas criminologist challenges effectiveness of solitary confinement

A new study by a UT Dallas criminologist finds that solitary confinement does not deter inmates from committing further violence in prison.

Agricultural contaminant impacts fish reproductive behavior

A common growth-promoting hormone used worldwide in the cattle industry has been found to affect the sexual behaviours of fish at a very low concentration in waterways - with potentially serious ecological and evolutionary consequences.

History of depression puts women at risk for diabetes during pregnancy, study finds

A history of depression may put women at risk for developing diabetes during pregnancy, according to research published in the latest issue of the Journal of Obstetric, Gynecologic & Neonatal Nursing by researchers from Loyola University Chicago Marcella Niehoff School of Nursing (MNSON).

Exercise largely absent from US medical school curriculum, study shows

Exercise may play a critical role in maintaining good health, but fewer than half of the physicians trained in the United States in 2013 received formal education or training on the subject, according to new research from Oregon State University.

Physician recommendations result in greater weight loss, UGA research finds

Patients advised to lose weight by their physicians dropped more pounds on average than those who didn't receive a recommendation, according to new research from the University of Georgia published in the journal Economics & Human Biology.

Mayo Clinic study suggests acute injured kidneys can be considered for transplant

The shortage of kidneys needed for organ transplantation in the U.S. can be alleviated in part by using select kidneys with Acute Kidney Injury (AKI), resulting in safe and positive outcomes, according to research conducted at Mayo Clinic in Arizona.

Researchers question use of paracetamol for lower back pain and osteoarthritis

New research shows that paracetamol is ineffective in reducing pain, disability or improving quality of life for patients who suffer from low back pain or osteoarthritis of the hip or knee, and its use may affect the liver.

A matter of taste: When do products benefit from mixed reviews?

How do consumers react to products with diverse online reviews? According to a new study in the Journal of Consumer Research, a mix of positive and negative reviews can benefit products that are evaluated based on personal taste.

ERS and ATS publish statement on the current state and future directions of COPD research

The European Respiratory Society (ERS) and American Thoracic Society (ATS) have published a statement describing the current evidence on the diagnosis, assessment and management of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), identifying gaps in knowledge and making recommendations for the directions of future research.

Experts question election pledges on GP access

As the general election in the UK approaches, experts writing in The BMJ this week question whether the party promises on access to general practice are likely to be achievable.

How does fertility affect women's desire for variety in products?

Women seek a greater variety of products and services when they are ovulating, according to a new study in the Journal of Consumer Research.

Montréal scientists get 1 step closer to finding how to repair damaged nerve cells

A team of researchers at the IRCM led by Frédéric Charron, PhD, in collaboration with bioengineers at McGill University, uncovered a new kind of synergy in the development of the nervous system, which explains an important mechanism required for neural circuits to form properly.

Do consumers think products are better when companies donate to charity?

Does hearing about a company's charitable donations raise your opinion of their products? According to a new study in the Journal of Consumer Research, corporate social responsibility leads consumers to believe products are better quality.

When are consumers more likely to rely on feelings to make decisions?

Why do some consumers make choices based on their feelings instead of rational assessments? According to a new study in the Journal of Consumer Research, consumers who consider themselves independent are more inclined to rely on feelings when making decisions.

Saving money: Do consumers spend less if they think about the future?

Why is it so hard for consumers to save money? According to a new study in the Journal of Consumer Research, consumers are often impatient and do not think about the long-term consequences of spending money.

Cultivating timeflow: Can consumers shape how they experience time?

Why does time seem to crawl if you're waiting in line at the post office, but hours can fly by in minutes when you're doing something fun? A new study in the Journal of Consumer Research examines the factors that determine how consumers experience time.

Early education narrows the achievement gap with younger starts and longer stays

New research from UNC's Frank Porter Graham Child Development Institute (FPG) reveals high-quality early education is especially advantageous for children when they start younger and continue longer.

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