Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

March 10, 2015
Mid-IR frequency combs enable high resolution spectroscopy for sensitive gas sensing
Publishing in Nature Communications, scientists from Ghent University and imec have joined forces with the Max Planck Institute in Garching to realize a frequency comb light source in the mid-IR wavelength band.

Being 'laid off' leads to a decade of distrust
Being forced into unemployment can scar trust for at least nine years after being being 'laid off.'

The International Meeting for Autism Research
The 14th Annual International Meeting for Autism Research will host more than 1,800 researchers, delegates, autism specialists and students from 40 countries in the world's largest gathering of researchers and clinicians as they exchange and disseminate the latest scientific findings and stimulate progress in autism research into the nature, causes and treatments for ASD.

Food for the future -- Assessments of impacts of climate change on agriculture
A new two-part volume features the work of over 200 scientists using the latest data, models, and technologies to forecast how regional agriculture will be impacted by climate change.

Depression puts low-income population at even greater risk for obesity and poor nutrition
In a study published in the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, researchers from the RAND Corporation report that for people receiving food assistance there are significant links between depression, poor dietary quality, and high body mass index.

'Perfect storm' of stress, depression may raise risk of death, heart attack for heart patients
High stress and deep depression among heart patients may up the risk of death or heart attack by 48 percent.

Hunting, birdwatching boosts conservation action
What inspires people to support conservation? A new study by researchers at Cornell University provides one simple answer: bird watching and hunting.

Telemedicine allows UTHealth to enroll patients remotely into acute stroke trial
For the first time in the world, researchers at The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston were able to enroll patients at other hospitals into an acute stroke clinical trial.

NASA sees a Tropical Storm Haliba 'sandwich'
Tropical Storm Haliba appeared to be the 'filling' in a sandwich between the Southern Indian Ocean islands of La Reunion and Mauritius in NASA satellite imagery because wind shear pushed the bulk of the storm's clouds between the islands.

MRSA can linger in homes, spreading among its inhabitants
Households can serve as a reservoir for transmitting methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), according to a study published this week in mBio, the online open-access journal of the American Society for Microbiology.

Move over Mozart: Study shows cats prefer their own beat
As more animal shelters, primate centers and zoos start to play music for their charges, it's still not clear whether and how human music affects animals.

Physicists propose new classification of charge density waves
LSU professors in the Department of Physics and Astronomy, Ward Plummer and Jiandi Zhang, propose a new classification of charge density waves.

MDC researchers discover new signaling pathway in embryonic development
During pregnancy, the mother supplies the fetus with nutrients and oxygen via the placenta.

Optical fibers light the way for brain-like computing
Computers that function like the human brain could soon become a reality thanks to new research using optical fibers made of specialty glass.

JAMA publishes one-year data for transcatheter aortic valve replacement procedure
Study results of one-year data for more than 12,000 patients who had transcatheter aortic valve replacement in the United States show an overall one-year death rate of 23.7 percent and a stroke rate of 4.1 percent, according to a study published in the March 10 issue of JAMA.

Document analysis shows influence of sugar industry on 1971 US National Caries Program
The sugar industry used several tactics to influence the setting of research priorities for the 1971 US National Caries Program, according to a study published by Cristin Kearns, Stanton Glantz and Laura Schmidt from the University of California -- San Francisco, US, in this week's PLOS Medicine.

Getting to the origins of photosynthesis
Cardona et al., in the advanced online edition of Molecular Biology and Evolution, examined the evolution origins of the D1 protein in cyanobacteria, which forms the heart of Photosystem II, the oxygen-evolving machine of photosynthesis.

Physicians and patients overestimate risk of death from acute coronary syndrome
Both physicians and patients overestimate the risk of heart attack or death for possible acute coronary syndrome (ACS) as well as the potential benefit of hospital admission for possible ACS.

New carbon accounting method proposed
Established ways of measuring carbon emissions can sometimes give misleading feedback on how national policies affect global emissions.

Microbial soil cleanup at Fukushima
Proteins from salt-loving, halophilic, microbes could be the key to cleaning up leaked radioactive strontium and caesium ions from the Fukushima Dai-ichi Nuclear Power Plant incident in Japan.

Stopping the revolving door: Sepsis survivors return to hospital for preventable reasons
They're alive thanks to the most advanced care modern hospitals can provide.

Brain development controlled by epigenetic factor
McGill researchers have discovered, for the first time, the importance of a key epigenetic regulator in the development of the hippocampus, a part of the brain associated with learning, memory and neural stem cells.

Regenstrief study finds natural language processing accurately tracks colonoscopy quality
An accurate system for tracking the quality of colonoscopies and determining the appropriate intervals between these procedures could contribute to both better health outcomes and lower costs.

Fractal patterns may uncover new line of attack on cancer
Studying the intricate fractal patterns on the surface of cells could give researchers a new insight into the physical nature of cancer, and provide new ways of preventing the disease from developing.

Queen's astronomers discover fastest ever unbound star in our galaxy
A fast-moving unbound star discovered by astronomers at Queen's University Belfast has broken the galactic speed record.

More weight-loss strategies needed for people with neurological disabilities
A review of nutrition and weight-loss interventions for people with impaired mobility found strategies are sorely lacking for people with neurological disabilities, according to a team of researchers from Case Western Reserve University and Cleveland Clinic.

Younger immigrants at higher risk of developing inflammatory bowel disease
This is the first population-based study to demonstrate an increased risk of IBD in the children of immigrants to Canada.

CU Denver study shows product placement, branding growing in popular music
As branding and advertising creep into almost every facet of life, a new study from the University of Colorado Denver shows it's now making substantial inroads into popular music.

Researchers identify process for improving durability of glass
Researchers at the UCLA Henry Samueli School of Engineering and Applied Science and the Université Pierre et Marie Curie in Paris have identified a method for manufacturing longer-lasting and stronger forms of glass.

Same forces as today caused climate changes 1.4 billion years ago
Natural forces have always caused the climate on Earth to fluctuate.

'Digitizing' crosstalk among heart cells may help locate epicenters of heart rhythms
A team of scientists led by Johns Hopkins cardiologist and biomedical engineer Hiroshi Ashikaga, M.D., Ph.D., has developed a mathematical model to measure and digitally map the beat-sustaining electrical flow between heart cells.

Hormone replacement therapy for postmenopausal women: Does it help or harm your heart?
New evidence published today in the Cochrane Library shows that hormone replacement therapy does not protect post-menopausal women against cardiovascular disease, and may even cause an increased risk of stroke.

Invertebrate palaeontology: The oldest crab larva yet found
A study of a recently discovered fossil published by LMU zoologists reveals the specimen to be the oldest known crab larva: the fossil is 150 million years old, but looks astonishingly modern.

Millions of women and children get improved health services
An ambitious 2010 initiative to improve the health of women and children around the world has turned into the fastest growing global public health partnership in history, attracting $60 billion in resources.

UCLA researchers for the first time measure the cost of care for a common prostate condition
UCLA researchers have for the first time described cost across an entire care process for a common condition called benign prostate hyperplasia using time-driven activity-based costing.

Engineered cells could help tackle the third most common cancer in Chinese males
Researchers at the University of Birmingham believe that a new method of genetically engineering immune cells could lead to improved treatment of nasopharyngeal carcinoma patients.

Are current water treatment methods sufficient to remove harmful engineered nanoparticle?
The increased use of engineered nanoparticles in commercial and industrial applications is raising concern over the environmental and health effects of nanoparticles released into the water supply.

Nutrient pollution from nitrogen and phosphorus reduces streams' ability to support aquatic life
Nutrient pollution from nitrogen and phosphorus in streams has long been known to increase carbon production by algae, often causing nuisance and harmful algal blooms.

Sex and smell -- Adam's nose
Exploitation of the rich food resources of Africa's grasslands required our ancestors to live communally to obtain the benefits of collaborative hunting.

Voices in people's heads more complex than previously thought
Voices in people's heads are far more varied and complex than previously thought, according to new research by Durham and Stanford universities, published in The Lancet Psychiatry today.

Salt affects organs
A review paper co-authored by two faculty members at the University of Delaware and two physicians at Christiana Care Health System provides evidence that even in the absence of an increase in blood pressure, excess dietary sodium can adversely affect target organs, including the blood vessels, heart, kidneys and brain.

High levels of vitamin D is suspected of increasing mortality rates
The level of vitamin D in our blood should neither be too high nor to low.

Bat species is first mammal found hibernating at constant warm temperatures
The Middle East, with temperate winters, was until recently considered an unlikely host for hibernating mammals.

ACL injuries in female athletes traced to genes
Female athletes endure two to eight times more anterior cruciate ligament, or ACL, injuries than their male counterparts.

Conclusive link between genetics and clinical response to warfarin uncovered
Researchers from Brigham and Women's Hospital report that patients with a genetic sensitivity to warfarin have higher rates of bleeding during the first several months of treatment and benefited from treatment with a different anticoagulant drug.

Keck School of Medicine of USC scientists open door for asthma cure
Scientists led by molecular immunologists at the Keck School of Medicine of the University of Southern California have identified a way to target a recently discovered cell type that causes asthma, paving the way to cure the chronic respiratory disease that affects 25 million Americans.

Lower prevalence of diabetes found among patients with inherited high cholesterol disorder
The prevalence of type 2 diabetes among 25,000 patients with familial hypercholesterolemia (a genetic disorder characterized by high low-density lipoprotein cholesterol levels) was significantly lower than among unaffected relatives, with the prevalence varying by the type of gene mutation, according to a study in the March 10 issue of JAMA.

Scientists show proteins critical in day-night cycles also protect cells from mutations
New research from The Scripps Research Institute shows that two proteins critical for maintaining healthy day-night cycles also protect against mutations that could lead to cancer.

Study reveals strong link between wildlife recreation and conservation
What inspires people to support conservation? As concerns grow about the sustainability of modern society, this question becomes more important.

Mobilizing research for global health theme of 6th annual CUGH conference
The sixth annual Consortium of Universities for Global Health conference is creating a stir by bringing together some of the world's leading researchers to tackle some of the biggest global health challenges we face.

New clues about the risk of cancer from low-dose radiation
Berkeley Lab scientists studied mice and found their risk of mammary cancer from low-dose radiation depends a great deal on their genetic makeup.

Tiny new fossil helps rewrite crab evolution, sheds lights on late Jurassic marine world
A paper in the journal Nature Communications co-written by NHM Crustacea curator Dr.

The chameleon reorganizes its nanocrystals to change colors
Many chameleons have the remarkable ability to exhibit complex and rapid color changes during social interactions.

Gene networks for innate immunity linked to PTSD risk
Researchers at the Veterans Affairs San Diego Healthcare System and University of California, San Diego School of Medicine, with colleagues in New York and the United Kingdom, have identified genetic markers, derived from blood samples that are linked to post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

Solving the riddle of neutron stars
It has not yet been possible to measure the gravitational waves predicted by Einstein's theory of general relativity.

More older adults from US doing volunteer work in other countries
Studies find that 290,000 older adults from the US volunteer abroad each year, explore the motivations of older adults and the obstacles to international volunteer work among this population.

Researchers from Stanford University and 23andMe discover genetic links to rosacea
Today marked the publication of the first ever genome-wide association study of rosacea, a common and incurable skin disorder.

Welcome to the neighborhood: New dwarf galaxies discovered in orbit around the Milky Way
Astronomers have discovered a 'treasure trove' of rare dwarf satellite galaxies orbiting our own Milky Way.

Ensuring respect and dignity in the ICU
Identifying loss of dignity and lack of respectful treatment as preventable harms in health care, researchers at Johns Hopkins have taken on the ambitious task of defining and ensuring respectful care in the high-stakes environment of the intensive care unit (ICU).

New book on 'Intellectual Property in Molecular Medicine' from CSHLP
'Intellectual Property in Molecular Medicine' aims to provide a clear, current, and comprehensive understanding of biomedical intellectual property and the laws that protect it.

Study explains control of cell metabolism in patient response to breast cancer drugs
Researchers identify a control mechanism for glutamine uptake in breast cancer cells and its importance for response to select chemotherapies.

An injectable UW polymer could keep soldiers, trauma patients from bleeding to death
University of Washington researchers have developed a new injectable polymer that strengthens blood clots, called PolySTAT.

Molecular Lego of knots
Trefoil, Savoy, or simple... how do you fashion a 'molecular' knot that has one of these shapes?

UC3M and Banco Santander have created an institute for research on Financial Big Data
Daniel Peña, Chancellor of the Universidad Carlos III de Madrid, and Ana Botín, president of Banco Santander, signed an agreement today for the creation of the Instituto Mixto de Investigación UC3M-Santander on Financial Big Data (Combined Institute for Research on Financial Big Data), whose headquarters will be on the university's Madrid-Puerta de Toledo campus.

Predicting the extent of flash flooding
Devastating floodwaters such as those experienced during Iowa's Flood of 2008 are notoriously difficult to predict.

March Madness brackets: Flipping a coin is your best bet
Each year, millions of people lose billions of dollars in NCAA March Madness basketball pools.

More UK regulation of total hip replacement devices needed to prevent unnecessary surgery
A new study from the University of Warwick is calling for more UK compulsory regulation of devices used in hip replacements to reduce the need for further traumatic and expensive surgery.

Clinical trial suggests combination therapy is best for low-grade brain tumors
New clinical-trial findings provide further evidence that combining chemotherapy with radiation therapy is the best treatment for people with a low-grade form of brain cancer.

Scientists find rare dwarf satellite galaxy candidates in Dark Energy Survey data
Scientists on two continents have independently discovered a set of celestial objects that seem to belong to the rare category of dwarf satellite galaxies orbiting our home galaxy, the Milky Way.

This week from AGU: Less summer fog in California, increasing diversity in the geosciences
The summer fog that shrouds coastal southern California -- what locals call the June Gloom -- is being driven up into the sky by urban sprawl, according to scientists who have studied 67 years of cloud heights and urban growth in the region.

KIT physicist receives ERC Consolidator Grant of EU
The 'QuantumMagnonics' project of Dr. Martin Weides of the Physikalisches Institut of KIT deals with dynamic processes inside ferromagnets, such as iron or cobalt.

WSU researchers see way cocaine hijacks memory
Washington State University researchers have found a mechanism in the brain that facilitates the pathologically powerful role of memory in drug addiction.

NREL tool finds effective behind-the-meter energy storage configurations
The Energy Department's National Renewable Energy Laboratory has used the Battery Lifetime Analysis and Simulation Tool to confirm that energy storage for demand-charge management can deliver attractive economic benefits.

ENVISAGE and the Wistar Institute forge new venture and value creation partnership
The Wistar Institute, an international leader in biomedical research, and ENVISAGE LLC, a prodigious life sciences venture creation and management firm, are pleased to announce a powerful partnership that leverages Wistar's innovative, high-impact science and ENVISAGE's expertise in managing immunology-infectious disease centered ventures.

Cebit 2015: Find out what your apps are really doing
These tiny programs on Internet-connected mobile phones are increasingly becoming entryways for surveillance and fraud.

Study examines outcomes for patients 1 year after transcatheter aortic valve replacement
In an analysis of outcomes of about 12,000 patients who underwent transcatheter aortic valve replacement, death rate after one year was nearly one in four; of those alive at 12 months, almost half had not been rehospitalized and approximately 25 percent had only one hospitalization, according to a study in the March 10 issue of JAMA.

Work-family conflict linked to verbal abuse
People whose family life regularly interferes with their job are more likely to become emotionally exhausted and, in turn, verbally abusive to co-workers and loved ones, a new study indicates.

Risk of motor vehicle accidents is higher in people with sleep apnea
A new study finds that obstructive sleep apnea is associated with a significantly increased risk of motor vehicle accidents, and this risk is reduced when sleep apnea is treated effectively using continuous positive airway pressure therapy.

New model of cybercrime factors in perishability of stolen data: INFORMS journal study
A new model examining cybercrimes adds an important way of examining the perishable value of stolen data so policy makers can plan against future hacks like the recent Anthem data breach, according to a study in the Articles in Advance section of Service Science, a journal published by the Institute for Operations Research and the Management Sciences.

Geoscientists to meet in Chattanooga, Tenn., USA
Geoscientists from the southeastern United States and beyond will convene in Chattanooga, Tenn., USA, on March 19-20 to discuss new and hot-topic science, expand on current studies, and explore the region's unique geologic features.

New approach to HIV management in Tanzania and Zambia reduces deaths by almost one-third
A new approach to care for patients with advanced HIV in Tanzania and Zambia combining community support and screening for a type of meningitis has reduced deaths by 28 percent, according to research from the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine.

New book reveals deception in wildlife filmmaking
In this tell-all expose of the wildlife filmmaking industry, film producer and American University professor Chris Palmer shares his own journey as a filmmaker -- with its highs and lows and challenging ethical dilemmas -- in order to provide filmmakers, networks, and the public with an invitation to evolve the industry to the next level.

Researchers synthesize new thin-film material for use in fuel cells
Researchers from Cornell University have synthesized a new thin-film catalyst for use in fuel cells.

High performance, lightweight supercapacitor electrodes of the future
Many scientists are working to develop green, lightweight, low-cost supercapacitors with high performance, and now two researchers from the S.N.

Can intensive mindfulness training improve depression?
Depression affects about 350 million people worldwide and is the leading cause of disability.

NASA looks inside and outside of Tropical Cyclone Pam
NASA's Terra satellite provided an outside look at Tropical Cyclone Pam while the RapidScat instrument that flies aboard the International Space Station provided an inside look at the surface winds generated by the storm.

Rare split images of supernova put Johns Hopkins astronomer in the spotlight
A Johns Hopkins astronomer played a key role in the recent discovery of a distant exploding star whose light split into four distinct images in a display seen for the first time by scientists using the Hubble Space Telescope.

Brain tumor patients put on fast track in revolutionary clinical trial
Brain tumor experts at Barrow Neurological Institute at Dignity Health St.

New England Wild Flower Society honors leader of global seed banking program
New England Wild Flower Society announced that its inaugural Founders' Medal will be awarded to Dr.

Friction means Antarctic glaciers more sensitive to climate change than we thought
A new study by Caltech researchers finds that incorporating Coulomb friction into computer models increases the sensitivity of Antarctic ice sheets to temperature perturbations driven by climate change.

Alarming old and young drivers
An in-car alarm that sounds when sensors on the vehicle detect an imminent crash could cut crash rates from one in five to one in 10 for drivers over the of 60 suffering tiredness on long journeys, according to a study published in the International Journal of Human Factors and Ergonomics.

Study compares outcomes for surgical vs. non-surgical treatment of broken shoulder
Among patients with a displaced fracture in the upper arm near the shoulder (proximal humeral), there was no significant difference between surgical treatment and nonsurgical treatment in patient-reported outcomes over two years following the fracture, results that do not support the trend of increased surgery for patients with this type of fracture, according to a study in the March 10 issue of JAMA.

International team of scientists discovers tiny glassy snails in caves of Northern Spain
Two new species of tiny subterranean snails enrich the biodiversity of Northern Spain.

Disease poses risk to chimpanzee conservation, Gombe study finds
Infectious disease spillover, including from humans to animals, poses risk to the chimpanzees of Gombe Stream National Park, where Jane Goodall began her pioneering behavioral research in 1960.

Hidden greenhouse emissions revealed in new Board of Agriculture report
Restoration of wetlands can reduce greenhouse gas emissions. This is shown in a report that has been written in part by researchers from the University of Gothenburg.

One in six college students misuse ADHD stimulant drugs
A team of researchers just published a meta-analysis showing that one in six college students misuse the stimulant drugs prescribed for ADHD, such as Ritalin and Adderall, considerably more than reported in several of the earlier studies.

Blue blood on ice -- how an Antarctic octopus survives the cold
An Antarctic octopus that lives in ice-cold water uses an unique strategy to transport oxygen in its blood, according to research published in Frontiers in Zoology.

Hospital readmissions following severe sepsis often preventable
In an analysis of about 2,600 hospitalizations for severe sepsis, readmissions within 90 days were common, and approximately 40 percent occurred for diagnoses that could potentially be prevented or treated early to avoid hospitalization, according to a study in the March 10 issue of JAMA.

Driving the best science to meet global health challenges
The 9th European Congress on Tropical Medicine and International Health brings together some 2,000 of the most distinguished scientists and experts in the field of tropical medicine and international health.

Cosmic dust discs withstand hellfire
Scientists led by astronomers at the University of Bonn discovered an unusual phenomenon in the center of the Milky Way: They detected rotating dust and gas discs hosting exceptionally large and hot stars.

Link between autism genes and higher intelligence, study suggests
Genes linked with a greater risk of developing autism may also be associated with higher intelligence, a study suggests.

The car becomes Internet hardware
Up to 80 different systems putter around in many cars.

Look, something shiny! How color images can influence consumers
When it comes to buying things, our brains can't see the big, black-and-white forest for all the tiny, colorful trees.

Fading orange-red in Van Gogh's paintings
Red lead is most familiar to us in orange-red rustproof paint.

Students say face-to-face bullying worse than cyber-attacks: QUT study
A survey of school students found face-to-face bullying more cruel and harsh than online attacks.

Magnetospheric multiscale spacecraft poised for launch
SwRI leads the science investigation for MMS, a NASA mission to study magnetic reconnection up close for the first time.

Researchers develop new approach that combines biomass conversion, solar energy conversion
In a study published March 9 in Nature Chemistry, University of Wisconsin-Madison chemistry professor Kyoung-Shin Choi presents a new approach to combine solar energy conversion and biomass conversion, two important research areas for renewable energy.

Researchers snap-shot fastest observations of superconductivity yet
An international team of researchers has used infinitely short light pulses to observe ultrafast changes in the electron-level properties of superconductors, setting a new standard for temporal resolution in the field.

New research into materials for tooth fillings
Tooth decay is a serious health problem and it is often necessary to repair cavities.

Bioelectricity plays key role in brain development and repair
Embryonic cells communicate, even across long distances, using bioelectrical signals, and they use this information to know where to form a brain and how big that brain should be.

SDO captures images of mid-level solar flares
The sun emitted two mid-level solar flares on March 9, 2015: The first peaked at 7:54 pm EDT and the second at 11:24 pm EDT.

Cellular scissors chop up HIV virus
Salk scientists re-engineered the bacterial defense system CRISPR to recognize HIV inside human cells and destroy the virus, offering a potential new therapy.

'Sugar papers' reveal industry role in 1970s dental program
A newly discovered cache of industry documents reveals that the sugar industry worked closely with the National Institutes of Health in the 1960s and '70s to develop a federal research program focused on approaches other than sugar reduction to prevent tooth decay in American children.

Design and build of synthetic DNA goes back to 'BASIC'
A new technique for creating artificial DNA that is faster, more accurate and more flexible than existing methods has been developed by scientists at Imperial College London.

Tales from both sides of the brain
What began as a scientific review of a half-century of brain studies became Michael Gazzaniga's memoir.

Mysterious phenomena in a gigantic galaxy-cluster collision
Using new capabilities of the Very Large Array, astronomers have made a fascinating image revealing details of the interactions between a pair of galaxy clusters. 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