Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

May 09, 2014
Properties of water at nanoscale will help to design innovative technologies
Scientists from Politecnico di Torino (Turin, Italy) and Houston Methodist Research Institute (Houston, USA) have just proposed on Nature Communications a novel understanding of unexpected water properties at the nanoscale in the close proximity of solid surfaces.

Paleontologists discover new fossil organism
UC Riverside paleontologists have discovered a fossil of a newly discovered organism from the Ediacara Biota.

UH chemical engineer earns Early Career Award from DOE
Lars Grabow, an assistant professor of chemical and biomolecular engineering at the University of Houston, has been awarded a $750,000, five-year award from the Department of Energy.

WSU students win international hydrogen competition with fueling station design
A group of Washington State University students has designed a plan for an innovative and economical fueling station that could help make environmentally friendly, hydrogen-powered cars a viable option for future transportation.

It's time to put the user back into system design
Understanding your users. That is the key to designing successful systems according to a new book, Foundations for Designing User-Centered Systems.

Leadless pacemaker showing promising results after 1 year
Vivek Reddy, M.D., Director of Arrhythmia Services for The Mount Sinai Hospital, reported his promising 12-month follow-up data showing the world's first leadless pacemaker is demonstrating overall device performance comparable to conventional pacemakers.

Bee biodiversity boosts crop yields
Research from North Carolina State University shows that blueberries produce more seeds and larger berries if they are visited by more diverse bee species, allowing farmers to harvest significantly more pounds of fruit per acre.

Scientists decode epigenetic mechanisms distinguishing stem cell function and blood cancer
Researchers at Dartmouth's Norris Cotton Cancer Center have published results from a study in Cell Reports that discovers a new mechanism that distinguishes normal blood stem cells from blood cancers.

Study identifies mechanism by which intestinal enzyme maintains microbial balance
Massachusetts General Hospital investigators have identified the mechanism by which an enzyme produced in the intestinal lining helps to maintain a healthy population of gastrointestinal microbes.

Life on cheese
Bacteria and molds are vital to the ripening and aroma of many cheeses.

NASA sees system 90E just after earthquake hit Mexico's Guerrero State
NASA's Aqua satellite captured an infrared image of the low pressure area just three hours after the earthquake.

Salt needed: Tolerance lessons from a dead sea fungus
Some organisms thrive in salty environments by lying dormant when salt concentrations are very high.

Scientists find gene behind a highly prevalent facial anomaly
Whitehead Institute scientists have identified a genetic cause of a facial disorder known as hemifacial microsomia (HFM).

Forty is not too old or too late to start endurance training
A study of healthy senior men has found that 'relatively intensive' endurance exercise confers benefits on the heart irrespective of the age at which they began training.

Teaching robots right from wrong
Researchers from Tufts University, Brown University, and Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute are teaming with the US Navy to explore technology that would pave the way for developing robots capable of making moral decisions.

How to increase the survival rate of motor neurons after spinal root avulsion
Dr. Lin Li and co-workers from Nanjing Medical University in China investigated whether preconditioning crush can increase the survival rate of motor neurons, which is the first to demonstrate that loss of ventral motor neurons after nerve root avulsion is partially prevented by preconditioning crush.

New method sneaks drugs into cancer cells before triggering release
Biomedical engineering researchers have developed an anti-cancer drug delivery method that essentially smuggles the drug into a cancer cell before triggering its release.

Plugging leaky blood vessels to save vision
A new drug approach has been developed for safer clean-up of deformed blood vessels in the eye by a research team at the Lunenfeld-Tanenbaum Research Institute, Mount Sinai Hospital in Toronto.

Physicists receive prestigious DOE honor for young faculty
Two Northwestern University physicists have been selected by the Department of Energy to receive significant research funding as part of the DOE's highly selective Early Career Research Program.

Study validates air sampling techniques to fight bioterrorism
Former Department of Homeland Security medical officer leads experiments to test early detection for bio threats.

President Clinton to open town hall on prescription drug abuse at Johns Hopkins University
On May 13, 2014, President Bill Clinton will open a town hall meeting co-hosted by the Clinton Health Matters Initiative and the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health to address prescription drug abuse.

Molecular high-speed origami
Proteins are responsible for nearly every essential process of life.

Colonization of Brazil by the cattle egret
A new study of the colonization patterns of the cattle egret in Brazil, published in the open access journal NeoBiota, offers a new take on the study of alien species.

Research indicates coyote predation on deer in East manageable
Coyotes are a major predator of white-tailed deer across the East, especially fawns born each spring, but wildlife managers nonetheless are able to stabilize and even grow deer herds, according to researchers in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences.

Autism-related protein shown to play vital role in addiction
In a paper published in the latest issue of the neuroscience journal Neuron, McLean Hospital investigators report that a gene essential for normal brain development, and previously linked to Autism Spectrum Disorders, also plays a critical role in addiction-related behaviors.

Quick test can help spot depressed teenagers, UT Arlington nursing researcher finds
Sharolyn Dihigo, a nurse practitioner and clinical assistant professor in the UT Arlington College of Nursing, recently examined available research to determine whether nurse practitioners and others in primary care settings should add a mental health screening to well visits for teenage patients.

Discovery links rare, childhood neurodegenerative diseases to common problem in DNA repair
St. Jude Children's Research Hospital scientists studying two rare, inherited childhood neurodegenerative disorders have identified a new, possibly common source of DNA damage that may play a role in other neurodegenerative diseases, cancer and aging.

Study strengthens link between neonicotinoids and collapse of honey bee colonies
Two widely used neonicotinoids -- a class of insecticide -- appear to significantly harm honey bee colonies over the winter, particularly during colder winters, according to Harvard School of Public Health researchers.

New species of metal-eating plant discovered in the Philippines
Scientists from the University of the Philippines, Los BaƱos have discovered a new plant species with an unusual lifestyle -- it eats nickel for a living -- accumulating up to 18,000 ppm of the metal in its leaves without itself being poisoned, says Professor Edwino Fernando, lead author of the report.

Cardiac screening test may help determine who should take aspirin to prevent heart attack
'Many heart attacks and strokes occur in individuals who do not appear to be at high risk,' states lead author, Michael D Miedema, MD, MPH.

Love makes you strong
Psychologists of the German Universities of Jena and Kassel discovered that a romantic relationship can have a positive effect on personality development in young adults.

Study predicts adult obesity prevalence in almost all European countries by 2030
Rates of obesity and overweight in both male and females are projected to increase in almost all countries of Europe by 2030, according to a statistical modelling study.

Larger percentage of Texas Hispanics have enrolled in Health Insurance Marketplace plans
Texas Hispanics were more than twice as likely as whites to have enrolled in health insurance plans offered through the Affordable Care Act's Health Insurance Marketplace between September 2013 and March 2014, according to a report released today by Rice University's Baker Institute for Public Policy and the Episcopal Health Foundation.

Grape consumption may offer benefits for symptomatic knee osteoarthritis
New research presented last week at the Experimental Biology conference in San Diego revealed the findings of a 16 week clinical study looking at the impact of grape consumption on symptomatic knee osteoarthritis.

Longevity gene may boost brain power
Scientists showed that people who have a variant of a longevity gene, called KLOTHO, have improved brain skills such as thinking, learning and memory regardless of their age, sex, or whether they have a genetic risk factor for Alzheimer's disease.

Conducting polymer films decorated with biomolecules for cell research use
The ability to create conducting polymer films in a variety of shapes, thicknesses and surface properties rapidly and inexpensively will make growing and testing cells easier and more flexible, according to a team of Penn State bioengineers.

Back to the future to determine if sea level rise is accelerating
Scientists have developed a new method for revealing how sea levels might rise around the world throughout the 21st century to address the controversial topic of whether the rate of sea level rise is currently increasing.

Plants' oil-desaturating enzymes pair up to channel metabolites
Plant scientists find fatty acid desaturating enzymes link up to pass intermediate products from one enzyme to another.

States opting out of Medicaid leave 1.1 million community health center patients without health insurance
An estimated 1.1 million community health center patients are left without the benefits of health coverage simply because they live in one of 24 states that have opted out of the Medicaid expansion, a key part of the Affordable Care Act, according to a new report.

Multimillion-dollar grant propels lab toward HIV cure
A George Mason University researcher has won a $3.3 million grant from the National Institutes of Health that may lead to a way for curing HIV in the next five years.

Overexpression of Notch1 in temporal lobe epilepsy
Notch1 signaling can induce astrogliosis in glioma. However, it remains unknown whether Notch1 signaling is involved in the pathogenesis of epilepsy.

Study finds patients AFib at higher risk of dementia when meds out of range
A new study by researchers at the Intermountain Medical Center Heart Institute in Salt Lake City has found that atrial fibrillation patients who are on blood thinning medications are at higher risk of developing dementia if their doses are not in recommended range.

Calcium supplements not associated with increased risk of cardiovascular disease in women
Calcium supplements are widely taken by women for bone health.

UTHealth CCTS Biobank continues to innovate allocation of resources for researchers
The Center for Clinical and Translational Science Biobank at The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston recently launched the Sample Location and Enhancement Distribution software application.

Nation's data capital poised to advance leadership position in big data
The Northern Virginia Technology Council, the George Washington University, and Attain, LLC, today released a research report conducted by Chmura Economics & Analytics highlighting the depth and breadth of big data experience, expertise and assets in Northern Virginia and the Potomac region.

NASA's TRMM Satellite see spring storms hit the US Great Plains
The Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission or TRMM satellite captured rainfall and cloud height information about the powerful thunderstorms and severe weather that affected the Great Plains over May 8 and 9.
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