Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

July 11, 2014
Molecular snapshots of oxygen formation in photosynthesis
Researchers from UmeƄ University, Sweden, have explored two different ways that allow unprecedented experimental insights into the reaction sequence leading to the formation of oxygen molecules in photosynthesis.

Virtual finger enables scientists to navigate and analyze complex 3D images
Researchers have pioneered a revolutionary new way to digitally navigate three-dimensional images.

Landsat looks to the moon
Every full moon, Landsat 8 turns its back on Earth.

A first direct glimpse of photosynthesis in action
An international team of researchers, including scientists from the Max Planck Institute for Medical Research in Heidelberg, has just a reported a major step in understanding photosynthesis, the process by which the Earth first gained and now maintains the oxygen in its atmosphere and which is therefore crucial for all higher forms of life on earth.

A new genome editing method brings the possibility of gene therapies closer to reality
This study published online in Cell Stell Cell provides an important theoretical foundation for stem cell-based gene therapy.

Baboons groom early in the day to get benefits later
Social animals often develop relationships with other group members to reduce aggression and gain access to scarce resources.

New study may identify risk factors for ACL re-injury
Re-tearing a repaired knee anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) happens all too frequently, however a recent study being presented today at the American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine's Annual Meeting suggests that identification and patient education regarding modifiable risk factors may minimize the chance of a future ACL tear.

Growing up on a livestock farm halves the risk of inflammatory bowel diseases
The incidence of inflammatory bowel diseases is rising sharply -- particularly among young people.

'Expressive therapy' intervention assists women living with HIV
New research from UC San Francisco shows that an 'expressive therapy' group intervention conducted by The Medea Project helps women living with HIV disclose their health status and improves their social support, self-efficacy and the safety and quality of their relationships.

USC Stem Cell scientists lay a TRAP for disease
USC Stem Cell scientists have set a 'mouse TRAP' to capture the early signs of kidney failure, as described by a recent study published in the Journal of Clinical Investigations.

When good gut bacteria get sick
A study from Brigham and Women's Hospital has utilized unique computational models to show how infection can affect bacteria that naturally live in our intestines.

Major study documents nutritional and food safety benefits of organic farming
The largest study of its kind has found that organic foods and crops have a suite of advantages over their conventional counterparts, including more antioxidants and fewer, less frequent pesticide residues.

ORNL wins eight R&D 100s
Researchers at the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory have received eight R&D 100 awards, presented by R&D Magazine in recognition of the year's top technological innovations.

BUSM's Michael F. Holick receives American Society for Bone and Mineral Research award
The American Society for Bone and Mineral Research awarded Michael F.

Text message medicine: Texts from the ER can reduce binge drinking
Young adults who screened positive for a history of hazardous or binge drinking reduced their binge drinking by more than 50 percent after receiving mobile phone text messages following a visit to the emergency department, according to a study published online yesterday in Annals of Emergency Medicine.

NASA's TRMM satellite maps Tropical Storm Neoguri's soggy path through Japan
Southern Japan received a soaking from Tropical Storm Neoguri on July 9 and 10 and data from the The Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission satellite was used to create a map that shows how much rain fell in Kyushu.

Brain activity in sex addiction mirrors that of drug addiction
Pornography triggers brain activity in people with compulsive sexual behavior -- known commonly as sex addiction -- similar to that triggered by drugs in the brains of drug addicts, according to a University of Cambridge study published in the journal PLOS ONE.

New professorship in tissue engineering links molecular engineering, marine biology
The University of Chicago is creating a new professorship in tissue engineering to promote innovative work at the University's Institute for Molecular Engineering and the Marine Biological Laboratory, supported by a $3.5 million donation from the Millicent and Eugene Bell Foundation.

'Tailored' water -- the latest in lawn care
'Fertigation,' drip irrigation and decentralized water treatment are new keys to a lush, green, sustainable lawn.

New NIST web tool makes working with glycan sugars a lot sweeter
NIST researchers are making available a web-based tool they designed for glycomics, the study of the sugar chains called glycans that are attached to proteins and lipids and influence cellular processes, including immunity, protein folding and, sometimes, changes associated with cancer.

BGI reports a novel gene for salt tolerance found in wild soybean
A team of researchers from The Chinese University of Hong Kong, BGI and other institutes have identified a gene of wild soybean linked to salt tolerance, with implication for improving this important crop to grow in saline soil.

Getting a charge out of water droplets
Last year, MIT researchers discovered that when water droplets spontaneously jump away from superhydrophobic surfaces during condensation, they can gain electric charge in the process.

Better use of electronic health records makes clinical trials less expensive
Research led by Professor van Staa, carried out while he was a member of the Clinical Practice Research Datalink and who is now based at The University of Manchester's Health eResearch Centre, published in Health Technology Assessment today looked at the use of statins in 300 people with high risk of cardiovascular disease by tracking their electronic records.

NASA sees Tropical Storm 9 over Guam
Guam and surrounding areas were under a Tropical Storm Warning and Watch on July 11 as NASA's Aqua satellite passed overhead.

Blame it on the astrocytes
The demonstration that astrocytes, the brain's most abundant cell type, participate in the formation of inhibitory synapses in the cortex suggests an important role for these cells in some neurological disorders.

Miriam Hospital study examines smoking prevalence
Researchers from The Miriam Hospital have found that people with mobility impairments under age 65 have significantly higher rates of smoking than those without mobility impairments.

Many fires in New South Wales, Australia
There were many fires burning in eastern New South Wales, Australia when NASA's Aqua satellite passed overhead on July 11.

ACL reconstructions may last longer with autografts
Anterior cruciate ligament reconstructions occur more than 200,000 times a year, but the type of material used to create a new ligament may determine how long you stay in the game, say researchers presenting their work today at the Annual Meeting of the American Orthopaedic Society of Sports Medicine.

Potent spider toxin 'electrocutes' German, not American, cockroaches
Using spider toxins to study the proteins that let nerve cells send out electrical signals, Johns Hopkins researchers say they have stumbled upon a biological tactic that may offer a new way to protect crops from insect plagues in a safe and environmentally responsible way.

NASA's high-flying laser altimeter to check out summer sea ice and more
Sea ice in summer looks dramatically different than sea ice in winter, even in the polar Arctic.

Opening-up the stem cell niche
A novel mouse model allows for the transplantation of human blood-forming stem cells without the need for irradiation therapy.

New simple setup for X-ray phase contrast
X-ray phase-contrast imaging can provide high-quality images of objects with lower radiation dose.

Out of an hours-long explosion, a stand-in for the first stars
Astronomers analyzing a long-lasting blast of high-energy light observed in 2013 report finding features strikingly similar to those expected from an explosion from the universe's earliest stars.

Omega 3 fatty acids lessen severity of osteoarthritis in mice
Mice consuming a supplement of omega 3 fatty acids had healthier joints than those fed diets high in saturated fats and omega 6 fatty acids, according to Duke Medicine researchers.

Belize's lobster, conch, and fish populations rebuild in no-take zones
A new report from the Wildlife Conservation Society shows that no-take zones in Belize can not only help economically valuable species such as lobster, conch, and fish recover from overfishing, but may also help re-colonize nearby reef areas.

NMR under pressure: Reproducing deep-Earth chemistry
A new pressure cell invented by UC Davis researchers makes it possible to simulate chemical reactions deep in the Earth's crust.

Drone lighting
Autonomous vehicles could automatically assume the right positions for photographic lighting.

Do women perceive other women in red as more sexually receptive?
Women are more likely to wear a red shirt when they are expecting to meet an attractive man, relative to an unattractive man or a woman.

AgriLife Research study identifies contributing factors to groundwater table declines
It's no secret groundwater levels have declined across the state over the past eight decades, and that the primary reason was the onset of irrigation in agriculture and population growth.

In lab studies, hydroxyethyl starch has direct harmful effects on kidney cells
The increased risk of kidney injury related to the use of hydroxyethyl starch in resuscitation fluids reflects the mass of HES molecules, according to a report in Anesthesia & Analgesia, official journal of the International Anesthesia Research Society.

Obese US firefighters report receiving no weight advice from their health provider
Obese and overweight firefighters are not receiving weight management advice from their health care providers, according to new research from The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston. 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