Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

August 07, 2015
How yeast doubled its genome -- by mating between species
The common baker's yeast (Saccharomyces cerevisiae) was the first non-bacterial living thing to have its genome sequenced, back in 1996.

How plants cope with stress, at the molecular level
Biochemist Elizabeth Vierling at the University of Massachusetts Amherst recently received a three-year, $682,982 National Science Foundation grant to study how plants respond, at the molecular and cellular level, to stress in their environment and the role of a regulatory protein called S-nitrosoglutathione reductase (GSNOR).

Shining a light on fish at night
Ahhh... a moonlight swim. The ocean at night can be enjoyed along with unseen inhabitants brushing up against you or nipping your toe, and topped off with that mesmerizing bioluminescent glow.

New book details long-term impact of Katrina on New Orleans-area children
A new book details, over a seven year period, the impact of Hurricane Katrina on children in New Orleans and surrounding areas.

Scientists move a step closer to understanding species distributions in the face of climate change
A team of international researchers, led by the University of Sheffield, has moved one step closer to discovering how physiological attributes allow some plants to thrive in a variety of conditions -- something that could be the key to future food sustainability.

Ruxolitinib in polycythaemia vera: Hint of non-quantifiable added benefit
Patients complain of fatigue less frequently and have a better quality of life.

Familiar drugs may block Ebola virus infection
A well-known class of molecules, many of which are already in use therapeutically, may be able to block the Ebola virus's entry into cells and halt the disease in its tracks, according to researchers at the University of Illinois at Chicago.

Linking cell-population to whole-fish growth
Before new chemicals can be approved, environmental risk assessments have to be carried out.

UTARI researchers developing soft robotic glove for post-stroke hand rehabilitation
Initial rehabilitation therapy for many stroke victims may focus on regaining the ability to walk.

UGA researcher calls for more natural baseline data collection in world's oceans
According to University of Georgia's Samantha Joye, one of the biggest challenges in evaluating the environmental impacts of the Macondo blowout was the lack of baseline data -- both in the water column and along the seabed.

Study looks at Google Glass to bring toxicology specialists to remote emergency rooms
Researchers at the University of Massachusetts Medical School have found that Google Glass, a head-mounted streaming audio/video device, may be used to effectively extend bed-side toxicology consults to distant health care facilities such as community and rural hospitals to diagnose and manage poisoned patients.

New research may enhance display & LED lighting technology
Researchers from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have developed a new method to extract more efficient and polarized light from quantum dots (QDs) over a large-scale area.

Copper clusters capture and convert carbon dioxide to make fuel
The chemical reactions that make methanol from carbon dioxide rely on a catalyst to speed up the conversion, and Argonne scientists identified a new material that could fill this role.

Charge density and optical properties of multicomponent crystals
Optical materials serve a major role in modern sciences and technology.

Pouring fire on fuels at the nanoscale
Nanoparticles with armor improve energy harvests from fuel cells.

XVIII International Congress on the Carboniferous and Permian
XVIII ICCP in Kazan will provide an important forum for discussion of the most relevant cutting-edge topic of Carboniferous and Permian geology and paleontology, and a unique opportunity to see and collect from exceptional geological localities in European Russia.

Fermilab experiment sees neutrinos change over 500 miles
Scientists on the NOvA experiment saw their first evidence of oscillating neutrinos, confirming that the extraordinary detector built for the project not only functions as planned but is also making great progress toward its goal of a major leap in our understanding of these ghostly particles.

NASA sees a wider-eyed Typhoon Soudelor near Taiwan
Clouds in Typhoon Soudelor's western quadrant were already spreading over Taiwan early on Aug.

'Caveman instincts' may favor deep-voiced politicians
When politicians debate an opponent, it's not just what they say that matters -- it's also how they say it.

New endoscopic, non-surgical bariatric options show promise for treating obesity
A new meta-analysis from the American Society for Gastrointestinal Endoscopy concluded that endoscopic bariatric therapies can be effective options and are most beneficial when used as part of a comprehensive, multidisciplinary treatment program.

Big dinosaur discoveries in tiny toothy packages
Researchers have examined one of the smallest parts of the fossil record -- theropod teeth -- to shed light on the evolution of dinosaurs at the end of the Cretaceous.

The 9th edition of the Karlsruhe Nuclide Chart is out
The JRC has released a new edition of the Karlsruhe Nuclide Chart, an extended periodic table which displays all known isotopes of every element and their radioactive data.

Mutations linked to genetic disorders shed light on a crucial DNA repair pathway
Researchers have identified two new genes in which mutations can interfere with a cell's ability to remove misplaced links between DNA strands, and, as a result, cause a rare genetic disorder known as Fanconi anemia.

Researchers collaborate in development of brain-friendly interfaces
Recent research published in the journal Microsystems & Nanoengineering could eventually change the way people living with prosthetics and spinal cord injury lead their lives.

NSF funds industry/university center for atomically thin coatings
The study and development of atomically thin coatings will be the focus of a one of a kind National Science Foundation funded university/industry center.

Pediatric brain tumors can be classified noninvasively at diagnosis
Medulloblastoma, the most commonly occurring malignant brain tumor in children, can be classified into four subgroups -- each with a different risk profile requiring subgroup-specific therapy.

National event to explore innovation models; showcase university innovation center
Case Western Reserve University will host Innovation Summit 2015: Models of Innovation to explore the opportunities and challenges of various models of innovation at the global scale.

UM researchers head to the clouds to study Earth's climate
Nearly 40 years after taking his first aircraft measurements of clouds off the California coast, University of Miami Professor Bruce Albrecht has returned again this month equipped with new state-of-the-art technologies to understand the effects of low-lying clouds on global climate.

Crime-scene compound may be newest tool in fight against malaria
The compound that detectives spray at crime scenes to find trace amounts of blood may be used one day to kill the malaria parasite.

Scientists adopt new strategy to find Huntington's disease therapies
Scientists searched the chromosomes of more than 4,000 Huntington's disease patients and found that DNA repair genes may determine when the neurological symptoms begin.

Land animals proliferate faster than aquatic counterparts
New analyses of vertebrate groups performed by UA evolutionary biologist John Wiens suggest that land animals proliferate more rapidly than their aquatic counterparts.

Corrected sunspot history suggests climate change not due to natural solar trends
The Sunspot Number is a crucial tool used to study the solar dynamo, space weather and climate change.

Silently suffering from hearing loss negatively affects quality of life
Hearing loss in adults is under treated despite evidence that hearing aid technology can significantly lessen depression and anxiety and improve cognitive functioning, according to a presentation at the American Psychological Association's 123rd Annual Convention.

Controlling inflammation to reduce chronic disease risk
An unresolved inflammatory response is likely to be involved from the early stages of disease development.

Candidate voice pitch influences voters
Two new studies conducted by a University of Miami professor show that the tone of a candidate's voice can influence whether he or she wins office.

Anti-aging researchers develop new algorithm that provides precision medicine for cancer patients
A targeted drug therapy avoids many of the negative side effects of traditional chemotherapy because it more specifically targets tumor cells.

ED counseling program fails to reduce partner violence or heavy drinking
A large randomized clinical trial of an emergency department (ED)-based program aimed at reducing incidents of excessive drinking and partner violence in women did not result in significant improvements in either risk factor, according to a new study from researchers at the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania.

New test measures effectiveness of treatments for Huntington's disease
A new test developed by UBC researchers allows physicians to measure the effects of gene silencing therapy in Huntington's disease and will support the first human clinical trial of a drug that targets the genetic cause of the disease.

Warning Area in Arctic airspace to aid research and exploration
A 700-mile-long, 40-mile-wide airspace that stretches north from Alaska nearly to the North Pole has been put under the stewardship of Sandia National Laboratories to create safer conditions for climate studies of clouds, retreating sea ice, and search-and-rescue missions.

NASA simulation indicates ancient flood volcanoes could have altered climate
Flood-basalt eruptions were enormous but not as explosive as eruptions like Pinatubo, which in 1991 propelled gases high into the stratosphere, causing a global cooling event.

Satellite data shows wind shear socking Guillermo near Hawaii
Tropical Depression Guillermo doesn't have much punch left in it as a result of strong, persistent vertical wind shear that continues to pound away at the storm's structure.

Studying yeast provides new insight to genome evolution
Researchers at the Centre for Genomic Regulation have proposed a new theory about the origins of the yeast lineage 100 million years ago.

Pupil shape linked to animals' ecological niche
A new analysis finds that a land animals' ecological niche is a strong predictor of pupil shape.

Switching mouse neural stem cells to a primate-like behavior
When the right gene is expressed in the right manner in the right population of stem cells, the developing mouse brain can exhibit primate-like features.

Web-based patient-centered toolkit helps improve patient-provider communication
A new study led by researchers at Brigham and Women's Hospital finds that a novel web-based, patient-centered toolkit used by patients and/or their healthcare proxys in the hospital setting helped them to engage in understanding and developing their plan of care, and has the potential to improve communication with providers.

Salt flat indicates some of the last vestiges of Martian surface water
Mars turned cold and dry long ago, but researchers at the University of Colorado Boulder have discovered evidence of an ancient lake that likely represents some of the last potentially habitable surface water ever to exist on the Red Planet. 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