Top Science News Articles | Science Current Events this Week
The top science news articles and science news articles and current events, scientific discoveries, studies and research from the past week.
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Kessler Foundation scientists link emotional processing deficits with white matter damage
Kessler Foundation researchers have linked the inability to recognize facial affect (emotion) with white matter damage after traumatic brain injury (TBI), an important first step toward understanding this emotional processing deficit.
Can facial plastic surgery make you more likeable?
Facial plastic surgery may do more than make you look youthful. It could change -- for the better -- how people perceive you.
New, natural DNA-based drugs are safe, potent activators of immune system
An experimental single-stranded oligonucleotide-based drug, MGN1703, comprised only of natural DNA components, stimulates the human immune system to fight infections and attack cancer cells without causing the harmful side effects associated with similar compounds that also contain non-natural DNA components.
Erupting electrodes: How recharging leaves behind microscopic debris inside batteries
An eruption of lithium at the tip of a battery's electrode, cracks in the electrode's body, and a coat forming on the electrode's surface reveal how recharging a battery many times leads to its demise.
A call to action for 2 cancer research fronts to join forces
Since President Nixon declared the "War on Cancer" in 1971, scientists have been united in a quest to find all gene deletions, insertions, or duplications that can cause an otherwise ordinary cell to divide uncontrollably.
The TRMM rainfall mission comes to an end after 17 years
In 1997 when the Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission, or TRMM, was launched, its mission was scheduled to last just a few years. Now, 17 years later, the TRMM mission has come to an end. NASA and the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) stopped TRMM's science operations and data collection on April 8 after the spacecraft depleted its fuel reserves.
The hoo's hoo of gibbon communication
The secret communication of gibbons has been interpreted for the first time in a study published in the open access journal BMC Evolutionary Biology.
Greatest mass extinction driven by acidic oceans, study finds
Changes to the Earth's oceans, caused by extreme volcanic activity, triggered the greatest extinction of all time, a study suggests.
Breakthrough finds molecules that block previously 'undruggable' protein tied to cancer
A team of scientists at the University of Kansas has pinpointed six chemical compounds that thwart HuR, an "oncoprotein" that binds to RNA and promotes tumor growth.
NASA study finds small solar eruptions can have profound effects on unprotected planets
While no one yet knows what's needed to build a habitable planet, it's clear that the interplay between the sun and Earth is crucial for making our planet livable - a balance between a sun that provides energy and a planet that can protect itself from the harshest solar emissions.
Plant cell structure discovery could lead to improved renewable materials
Major steps forward in the use of plants for renewable materials, energy and for building construction could soon arise, thanks to a key advance in understanding the structure of wood.
Ocean myth busted: 'Toddler' sea turtles are very active swimmers
It turns out sea turtles, even at a tender 6-18 months of age, are very active swimmers. They don't just passively drift in ocean currents as researchers once thought.
Big data key to precision medicine's success
Technological advances are enabling scientists to sequence the genomes of cancer tumors, revealing a detailed portrait of genetic mutations that drive these diseases.
New high-throughput screening method may uncover novel treatments for kidney disease
A newly developed assay may help investigators identify novel drug candidates to protect kidney cells and prevent or treat chronic kidney disease (CKD). The advance is described in an upcoming issue of the Journal of the American Society of Nephrology (JASN).
Shifts in electricity generation spur net job growth, but coal jobs decline
In the four years following the 2008 recession, the coal industry lost more than 49,000 jobs, while the natural gas, solar and wind industries together created nearly four times that amount, according to a new Duke University study.
Quantum physics -- hot and cold at the same time
Temperature is a very useful physical quantity. It allows us to make a simple statistical statement about the energy of particles swirling around on complicated paths without having to know the specific details of the system.
Choice of protein & carbohydrate-rich foods may have big effects on long-term weight gain
Making small, consistent changes to the types of protein- and carbohydrate-rich foods we eat may have a big impact on long-term weight gain.
Exceptionally preserved fossil gives voice to ancient terror bird
A new species of South American fossil terror bird called Llallawavis scagliai ("Scaglia's Magnificent Bird") is shedding light on the diversity of the group and how these giant extinct predators interacted with their environment.
Researchers find new approach to treat drug-resistant HER2-positive breast cancer
Resistance to therapy is a major problem in the cancer field. Even when a treatment initially works, the tumors often find ways around the therapy. Using human cell lines of the HER2-positive breast cancer subtype, researchers from the UNC School of Medicine and UNC Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center have detailed the surprising ways in which resistance manifests and how to defeat it before it happens.
Researchers create tool to predict avian flu outbreaks
A simple and effective portable tool to predict avian flu outbreaks on farms has been created by University of Guelph researchers.
Axillary lymph node evaluation performed frequently in ductal carcinoma in situ
Axillary lymph node evaluation is performed frequently in women with ductal carcinoma in situ breast cancer, despite recommendations generally against such an assessment procedure in women with localized cancer undergoing breast-conserving surgery, according to a study published online by JAMA Oncology.
Early physical therapy for low back pain reduces costs, resources
A study in the scientific journal BMC Health Services Research shows that early and guideline adherent physical therapy following an initial episode of acute, nonspecific low back pain (LBP) resulted in substantially lower costs and reduced use of health care resources over a 2-year period.
'Warm blob' in Pacific Ocean linked to weird weather across the US
The one common element in recent weather has been oddness. The West Coast has been warm and parched; the East Coast has been cold and snowed under. Fish are swimming into new waters, and hungry seals are washing up on California beaches.
New tool to diagnose Ebola uncovers some surprises
-Abdominal pain, fever and unexplained bleeding - which are commonly believed to indicate infection with the Ebola virus -- are not significantly predictive of the disease, according to the results of a study examining a new Ebola Prediction Score published online Friday in Annals of Emergency Medicine.
New material could boost batteries' power, help power plants
You're going to have to think very small to understand something that has the potential to be very big.
Mapping energy metabolism of growing nerve cells to better understand neuronal disorders
Scientists from Kyoto University's Institute for Integrated Cell-Material Sciences (iCeMS) in Japan have have discovered how nerve cells adjust to low energy environments during the brain's growth process.
Graphene looking promising for future spintronic devices
Researchers at Chalmers University of Technology have discovered that large area graphene is able to preserve electron spin over an extended period, and communicate it over greater distances than had previously been known.
Engineers now understand how complex carbon nanostructures form
Carbon nanotubes (CNTs) are microscopic tubular structures that engineers "grow" through a process conducted in a high-temperature furnace. The forces that create the CNT structures known as "forests" often are unpredictable and are mostly left to chance.
Serious life events in childhood can triple risk of developing type 1 diabetes
New research from Sweden published in Diabetologia (the journal of the European Association for the Study of Diabetes) shows that serious life events (SLEs) in childhood, such as death or illness in the family, divorce/separation, a new child or adult in the family, and conflicts in the family, can triple the risk of subsequently developing type 1 diabetes (T1D).
Ordinary clay can save the day
Carbon capture will play a central role in helping the nations of the world manage and reduce their greenhouse gas emissions.
Mental practice and physical therapy effective treatment for stroke, research shows
A combination of mental practice and physical therapy is an effective treatment for people recovering from a stroke, according to researchers at Georgia State University.
Research could usher in next generation of batteries, fuel cells
Scientists from South Carolina's leading public universities--the University of South Carolina and Clemson University--have made a discovery that could dramatically improve the efficiency of batteries and fuel cells.
Carnegie Mellon scientists question representation of women in international journal
Three leading cognitive scientists from Carnegie Mellon University are questioning the gender representation of invited contributors in the special February 2015 issue, "The Changing Face of Cognition," published by the international journal Cognition.
Scientists tackle our addiction to salt and fat by altering foods' pore size, number
Two University of Illinois food scientists have learned that understanding and manipulating porosity during food manufacturing can affect a food's health benefits.
Spending cuts in India will hurt already inadequate health services
Deep cuts in health spending by the Indian government will lead to continued inadequate health services and delays in achieving universal access to healthcare, argue experts in The BMJ this week.
Brain imaging explains reason for good and poor language outcomes in ASD toddlers
Using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), University of California, San Diego School of Medicine researchers say it may be possible to predict future language development outcomes in toddlers with autistic spectrum disorder (ASD), even before they've been formally diagnosed with the condition.
Stem cell disease model clarifies bone cancer trigger
Using induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs), a team led by Mount Sinai researchers has gained new insight into genetic changes that may turn a well known anti-cancer signaling gene into a driver of risk for bone cancers, where the survival rate has not improved in 40 years despite treatment advances.
Combined sewer systems lead to risk of illness after heavy rains
Consumers whose drinking water can be contaminated by the release of untreated wastewater after heavy rains face increased risk for gastrointestinal illness, according to a report in the journal Environmental Health Perspectives.
New Waldenstrom's drug shows sustained benefit at two years
The most recent results from a clinical trial show that ibrutinib, a newly approved drug for Waldenstrom's Macroglobulinemia, continued to control the rare blood cancer, with 95 percent of patients surviving for two years, report investigators from Dana-Farber Cancer Institute.
Fracking fluid chemicals uncovered, helping test for contamination
The organic chemicals in fracking fluid have been uncovered in two new studies, providing a basis for water contamination testing and future regulation.
Inbreeding in mountain gorillas may contribute to save the species
Mountain gorillas are large primates critically endangered living in central Africa, but they are adapted to survive in small groups, according to an international research that has sequenced the genome from different gorillas to compare the genomes of all four Gorilla subspecies.
Facial plastic surgery improves perception of femininity, personality, attractiveness
Facial rejuvenation surgery may not only make you look younger, it may improve perceptions of you with regard to likeability, social skills, attractiveness and femininity, according to a report published online by JAMA Facial Plastic Surgery.
Hormones that guide root growth rates revealed
A plant's roots grow and spread into the soil, taking up necessary water and minerals.
Dodo bird verdict given new life by psychosis therapy study
A study by researchers at The University of Manchester and the University of Liverpool has examined the psychological treatment of more than 300 people suffering from psychosis, showing that, whatever the therapy, it is the relationship between the patient and therapist which either improves or damages wellbeing.
Platform adoption in network markets
Strategic partnering has become commonplace when introducing innovations to systems markets. In standards battles, network affiliation has been used as a market signal to create confidence in a format's success.
Being underweight in middle age associated with increased dementia risk
Middle-aged people who are underweight (with a Body Mass Index [BMI] less than 20 kg/m2 ) are a third more likely to develop dementia than people of similar age with a healthy BMI, according to new research published in The Lancet Diabetes & Endocrinology journal.
Gene loss creates eating disorder-related behaviors in mice
Building on their discovery of a gene linked to eating disorders in humans, a team of researchers at the University of Iowa has now shown that loss of the gene in mice leads to several behavioral abnormalities that resemble behaviors seen in people with anorexia nervosa.
Poor nutrition for honey bee larvae compromises pollination capabilities as adults
A new study by Heather Mattila, a leading honey bee ecologist and Assistant Professor of Biological Sciences at Wellesley College, published on April 8 in PLOS ONE, reveals that inadequate access to pollen during larval development has lifelong consequences for honey bees, leading not only to smaller workers and shorter lifespans, but also to impaired performance and productivity later in life.
Cosmic debris: Study looks inside the universe's most powerful explosions
A new study provides an inside look at the most powerful explosions in the universe: gamma-ray bursts.
Brain activity in infants predicts language outcomes in autism spectrum disorder
Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) can produce strikingly different clinical outcomes in young children, with some having strong conversation abilities and others not talking at all.
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