Brightsurf Science News & Current Events Archive (January 2019)

Science news and science current events archive January, 2019.

Show All Years  •  2019  ||  Show All Months (2019)  •  January

Week 01

Week 02

Week 03

Week 04

Week 05

Top Science News & Current Event Articles from January 2019

Speed of light: Toward a future quantum internet
University of Toronto Engineering researchers have demonstrated proof-of-principle for a device that could serve as the backbone of a future quantum Internet. U of T professor Hoi-Kwong Lo and his collaborators have developed a prototype for a key element for all-photonic quantum repeaters, a critical step in long-distance quantum communication.

Columbia engineers translate brain signals directly into speech
In a scientific first, Columbia neuroengineers have created a system that translates thought into intelligible, recognizable speech. This breakthrough, which harnesses the power of speech synthesizers and artificial intelligence, could lead to new ways for computers to communicate directly with the brain. It also lays the groundwork for helping people who cannot speak, such as those living with as ALS or recovering from stroke, regain their ability to communicate with the outside world.

Artificial intelligence can dramatically cut time needed to process abnormal chest X-rays
New research has found that a novel Artificial Intelligence (AI) system can dramatically reduce the time needed to ensure that abnormal chest X-rays with critical findings will receive an expert radiologist opinion sooner, cutting the average delay from 11 days to less than three days. Chest X-rays are routinely performed to diagnose and monitor a wide range of conditions affecting the lungs, heart, bones, and soft tissues.

Artificial intelligence advances threaten privacy of health data
Advances in artificial intelligence, including activity trackers, smartphones and smartwatches, threaten the privacy of people's health data, according to new research from the University of California, Berkeley.

New quantum system could help design better spintronics
Researchers have created a new testing ground for quantum systems in which they can literally turn certain particle interactions on and off, potentially paving the way for advances in spintronics.

Identifying artificial intelligence 'blind spots'
A novel model developed by MIT and Microsoft researchers identifies instances in which autonomous systems have 'learned' from training examples that don't match what's actually happening in the real world. Engineers could use this model to improve the safety of artificial intelligence systems, such as driverless vehicles and autonomous robots.

Measuring AI's ability to learn is difficult
Organizations looking to benefit from the artificial intelligence (AI) revolution should be cautious about putting all their eggs in one basket, a study from the University of Waterloo has found.

Seawater turns into freshwater through solar energy: A new low-cost technology
A study conducted at Politecnico di Torino and published by the journal Nature Sustainability promotes an innovative and low-cost technology to turn seawater into drinking water, thanks to the use of solar energy alone. In the future, this innovation could have a positive impact on the quality of life in regions affected by drinking water scarcity.

New materials could 'drive wound healing' by harnessing natural healing methods
Imperial researchers have developed new bioinspired material that interacts with surrounding tissues to promote healing.

Your smartphone now knows if you smoke and may help you quit
A study from Gero longevity company shows that smoking cessation leads to rejuvenation that can be monitored by a mobile phone app

Cellular stress at the movies
For the first time, biological imaging experts have used a custom fluorescence microscope and a novel antibody tagging tool to watch living cells undergoing stress.

WVU researchers find telemedicine may increase patient satisfaction with medical care
A recent study led by Albeir Mousa, a professor in the West Virginia University School of Medicine, suggests telemedicine may improve patients' satisfaction with their postoperative care as well as their quality of life. Their results have been accepted for publication in The Annals of Vascular Surgery.

Scientists turn carbon emissions into usable energy
A recent study, affiliated with South Korea's Ulsan National Institute of Science and Technology (UNIST) has introduced a system that turn carbon emissions into usable energy.

Does being bilingual make children more focused? Study says no
Bilingual children do not have more advantages than monolingual children when it comes to executive function, which includes remembering instructions, controlling responses, and shifting swiftly between tasks, according to a new study published in PLOS One.

UMN researchers describe need for health systems to improve care of gender non-binary patients
A perspective piece authored by UMN Medical School researchers and published in the New England Journal of Medicine uncovers significant healthcare disparities for individuals who identify as neither male nor female or may not identify as having a gender.

Long-term trauma outcomes heavily impacted by gender and education level
Researchers find sociodemographic factors more predictive of worse outcomes than injury severity.

Can a video game-based 'digital medicine' help children with autism and co-occurring ADHD?
Researchers at Children's Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) evaluated a digital medicine tool designed as an investigational treatment for children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and co-occurring attention/deficit-hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).

A powerful catalyst for electrolysis of water that could help harness renewable energy
An international collaboration of Scientists at Dongguk University developed a novel nickel-based hydroxide compound that can be used as a powerful catalyst for the electrolysis of water. This material could also be useful for developing renewable energy sources.

One in 4 women at sexual health clinics reports coercion over their reproductive lives
As many as one in four women attending sexual and reproductive healthcare services say they are not allowed to take control of their own reproductive lives, reveals a review of the available evidence, published today in BMJ Sexual & Reproductive Health.

Salk team reveals clues into early development of autism spectrum disorder
Researchers at the Salk Institute compared stem cells created from individuals with ASD against stem cells created from those without ASD to uncover, for the first time, measurable differences in the patterns and speed of development in the ASD-derived cells.

Childhood body composition may help determine future lung health
Boys and girls with more muscle mass in childhood and adolescence have higher lung function.

ESC press release: Loss of muscle and weight associated with disability after stroke
Loss of muscle and body weight is associated with disability after stroke, reports a study presented today at Heart & Stroke 2019, a meeting of the European Society of Cardiology (ESC) Council on Stroke, and published in the Journal of Cachexia, Sarcopenia and Muscle.

Heart cell defect identified as possible cause of heart failure in pregnancy
A new Tel Aviv University study reveals that one of the possible primary causes of heart failure in pregnant women is a functional heart cell defect. The findings may have diagnostic and therapeutic implications.

Surrey AI predicts cancer patients' symptoms
Doctors could get a head start treating cancer thanks to new AI developed at the University of Surrey that is able to predict symptoms and their severity throughout the course of a patient's treatment.

The human brain works backwards to retrieve memories
When we remember a past event, the human brain reconstructs that experience in reverse order, according to a new study at the University of Birmingham.

New measure of equality reveals a fuller picture of male well-being
Researchers from the University of Missouri and University of Essex in the United Kingdom say a new way of measuring gender inequality is fairer to both men and women, and presents a simplified but more accurate picture of peoples' well-being than previous calculations. The new Basic Index of Gender Inequality (BIGI) focuses on three factors -- educational opportunities, healthy life expectancy and overall life satisfaction.

New study provides clinicians with better analysis of psychological flexibility
New research from the University of Chichester, published in Behavior Modification, has for the first time analyzed degrees of psychological flexibility and identified three distinct classes.

Language used on credit card websites the hardest to understand
New research led by the University of East Anglia reveals how easy it is for consumers to understand the language used on personal finance websites. The study analyzed the text of websites for payday lenders, personal loans and credit cards in the UK and found that while payday loans sites are easier to read, all are difficult. Credit card websites are hardest to read and contain more complex terminology, though no significant differences are found between payday loans and personal loans.

Autism and theory of mind
Theory of mind, or the ability to represent other people's minds as distinct from one's own, can be difficult for people with autism. A new test provides researchers with a better understanding of the source of this difficulty.

Calcium specks may help detect heart disease in South Asians
Specks of calcium in the heart's artery walls could be an important prognostic marker of early cardiovascular disease in South Asians and may help guide treatment in this population, according to a study by researchers at UC San Francisco.

Researchers discover key protein in the production of insulin
The crucial hormone insulin needs help acquiring the right structure. A protein that assists in the process of insulin folding has just been discovered in a new study conducted by researchers at the Department of Biomedical Sciences, University of Copenhagen. They hope the new research results can be used to develop treatments for conditions such as increased level of insulin in the blood known as hyperinsulinemia.

Improved maternity care practices decrease racial gaps in breastfeeding in the US South
A new paper published in Pediatrics links successful implementation of Baby-Friendly™ practices in the southern US with increases in breastfeeding rates and improved, evidence-based care. The changes were especially positive for African-American women.

Pre-Medicare years bring health insurance worries for many, U-M/AARP poll finds
With the dawn of a new year, most Americans have just started a new health insurance coverage period -- whether they receive their coverage through a job, buy it themselves or have a government plan. But a new national poll suggests that many people in their 50s and early 60s harbor serious worries about their health insurance status, now and in the future.

Does opioid use in pets create higher risk for abuse in humans?
The increase in opioid prescriptions for people over the past decade may have been paralleled by an increase in opioid prescriptions for pets, according to a study from researchers at the University of Pennsylvania's Perelman School of Medicine and the School of Veterinary Medicine. The findings, in this first-ever study of veterinary opioid prescriptions, suggest it is possible that misused veterinary prescriptions could contribute to the ongoing opioid epidemic.

Association of childhood lead exposure with adult personality traits, mental health
Millions of adults now entering middle age were exposed to high levels of lead as children, with childhood lead exposure linked to lower IQ, greater rates of child behavior problems, hyperactivity and antisocial behavior. This study included nearly 600 children in New Zealand who had their blood lead levels measured at age 11 and their mental health assessed periodically through age 38.

Adolescents who self-harm more likely to commit violent crime
Young people who self-harm are three times more likely to commit violent crime than those who do not, according to new research from the Center for Child and Family Policy at Duke University. The study also found young people who self-harm and commit violent crime -- 'dual harmers' -- are more likely to have a history of childhood maltreatment and lower self-control than those who self-harm only.

Exposure to sugary breakfast cereal advertising directly influences children's diets
Laboratory studies have shown that kids will request and prefer brands they have seen recently advertised on TV. A new naturalistic Dartmouth study bridges the gap between lab studies and a real world setting, demonstrating that kids who were exposed to TV ads for high-sugar cereals aired during the programs they watched were more likely to subsequently eat the brands of cereals they had seen advertised.

Fish oil does not appear to improve asthma control in teens, young adults
Fish oil does not appear to improve asthma control in adolescents and young adults with uncontrolled asthma who are overweight or obese, according to new research published online in the Annals of the American Thoracic Society.

Quantum chemistry on quantum computers
A new quantum algorithm has been implemented for quantum chemical calculations on quantum computers to predict complex chemical reactions without exponential/combinatorial explosion, giving exact solutions of Schroedinger Equations for chemistry, for the first time.

An errant editing enzyme promotes tumor suppressor loss and leukemia propagation
UC San Diego researchers have found a stem cell enzyme copy edits more than 20 tumor types, providing new therapeutic target for preventing cancer cell resistance to chemotherapy and radiation.

Scientists discover new 'architecture' in corn
New research on the US's most economically important agricultural plant -- corn -- has revealed a different internal structure of the plant than previously thought, which can help optimize how corn is converted into ethanol.

Researchers reveal new mechanism to 'activate' the immune system against cancer
A new mechanism for activating the immune system against cancer cells allows immune cells to detect and destroy cancer cells better than before, and most effectively in lung cancer and melanoma.

Cancer cells steer a jagged path
Researchers at Rice University and the Duke University School of Medicine define the role of a jagged ligand, JAG1, in cancer cells' ability to differentiate and metastasize, making them harder to track down and eliminate.

Nutritional status in adolescent girls
In the current issue of Family Medicine and Community Health, Smitha Malenahalli Chandrashekarappa et al. consider socio-demographic variables that might be contributing to malnutrition in the age group between 16-19 years (late adolescence).

Anxiety-depressive disorder changes brain genes activity
Russian neuroscientists discovered that anxiety-depressive disorder in mice is associated with impaired energy metabolism in the brain. The obtained data provides a fresh look at the depression development mechanism and other psycho-emotional diseases formation. The results of the study supported by Russian Science Foundation are published in the BMC Neuroscience.

North Sea rocks could act as large-scale renewable energy stores
Rocks in the seabed off the UK coast could provide long-term storage locations for renewable energy production, new research suggests.

Selection and reselection processes of executive political positions are gender biased
Although male over-representation in politics is a worldwide phenomenon, the executive is the most male-dominated branch. There have been very few women presidents and prime ministers. The figure has stagnated since 1990 at twenty female national leaders per year. In recent years their presence has even decreased: in December 2017 there were only thirteen female leaders of their respective country.

LSTM and Imperial College Researchers design new anti-influenza drugs
Researchers at LSTM and Imperial College London have designed drugs which could help combat any potential new flu pandemic, by targeting the receptors of the cells by which the virus gains entry to the human body.

Racial disparities in asthma related to health care access, environmental factors
In the United States, racial disparities in asthma prevalence, morbidity and mortality can largely be explained by looking at socioeconomic and environmental factors, such as access to healthcare. The findings highlight the potential of targeted interventions, such as mobile asthma clinic programs and joint programs with schools where asthma prevalence is high.

Genetic testing does not cause undue worry for breast cancer patients
As genetic testing for breast cancer has become more complex, evaluating a panel of multiple genes, it introduces more uncertainty about the results. But a new study finds that newer, more extensive tests are not causing patients to worry more about their cancer risk.

Brightsurf.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.