Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

September 10, 2015
GI side effects of chemotherapy reduced in mice by targeting gut microbes
The blame for some of chemotherapy's awful side effects may lie with our gut microbes, early evidence suggests.

UT Arlington computer scientist's research would make robots more observant
A University of Texas at Arlington engineer is seeking ways to program robots by having them observe a human performing a particular task, then imitate it to complete the same objective.

Eating a lot of fish may help curb depression risk -- at least in Europe
Eating a lot of fish may help curb the risk of depression -- at least in Europe -- suggests a pooled analysis of the available evidence, published online in the Journal of Epidemiology & Community Health.

Which patients will respond to melanoma immunotherapy?
Patients with metastatic melanoma who have benefited from a new type of cancer immunotherapy don't appear to share the same tumor-produced antigens, according to a new report by Eliezer Van Allen and colleagues.

Consensus statement regarding access and inclusion of geoscientists with disabilities
The American Geosciences Institute is pleased to announce the release of a community consensus statement on access and inclusion of geoscientists with disabilities.

Damage in retinal periphery closely matches loss of blood flow in people with diabetes
A follow-up study has shown that these peripheral lesions, which are not detected by traditional eye imaging, correlate very closely with the loss of retinal blood flow called retinal 'non-perfusion' caused by loss of small blood vessels or capillaries.

ASHG issues statement supporting licensure of genetic counselors
ASHG issued today a statement of support for state licensure of certified genetic counselors.

Stanford scientists home in on origin of human, chimpanzee facial differences
A study of species-specific regulation of gene expression in chimps and humans has identified regions important in human facial development and variation.

Fighting fakes with the first integral 3-D barcode
The first 3-D barcode which can be built into products during manufacture has been developed by UK engineers.

Cancer preventative surgery could become a thing of the past, new research suggests
Surgery to remove the breasts of women at increased risk of developing breast cancer may not be necessary in the future, according to research published in EBioMedicine.

New risk score for colorectal cancer could guide selection of screening tests
Researchers at the Regenstrief Institute and the Indiana University School of Medicine have developed a new risk assessment scoring system that could help physicians judge which patients can forgo invasive colonoscopy testing for cancer screening and which should receive the test.

Cancer decoy could attract, capture malignant cells
A small, implantable device that researchers are calling a cancer 'super-attractor' could eventually give doctors earlier warnings of relapse in breast cancer patients and even slow the disease's spread to other organs.

$5.67 million grant helps researchers identify early signs of Alzheimer's
A new Michigan State University study, aimed at identifying early signs of Alzheimer's disease among Latinos and Hispanics, could help delay or even prevent its onset thanks to a $5.67 million, five-year grant from the National Institute on Aging.

Moon's crust as fractured as can be
Scientists at MIT and elsewhere have identified regions on the far side of the moon, called the lunar highlands, that may have been so heavily bombarded -- particularly by small asteroids -- that the impacts completely shattered the upper crust, leaving these regions essentially as fractured and porous as they could be.

Ogawa-Yamanaka Prize founded at the Gladstone Institutes to support stem cell research
The Gladstone Institutes is pleased to present the inaugural Ogawa-Yamanaka Stem Cell Prize to Masayo Takahashi, M.D., Ph.D.

Stanford scientists produce cancer drug from rare plant in lab
Stanford scientists produced a common cancer drug -- previously only available from an endangered plant -- in a common laboratory plant.

Cocoa flavanols lower blood pressure and increase blood vessel function in healthy people
New studies from the EU-funded FLAVIOLA consortium show that consuming cocoa flavanols lowers blood pressure, increases flow-mediated vasodilation and improves blood cholesterol profile.

Pressure to be available 24/7 on social media causes teen anxiety and depression
Analysis showed that overall and night-time specific social media use along with emotional investment were related to poorer sleep quality, lower self-esteem as well as higher anxiety and depression levels.

Where flu vaccination rates are higher in adults under 65, lower flu risk for seniors
Healthy adults who get the flu vaccine may help protect not only themselves but also older adults in their community at higher risk for serious complications from influenza, suggest findings from a new study published in Clinical Infectious Diseases.

AGA recommends all patients with colorectal cancer get tested for Lynch syndrome
All colorectal cancer patients should undergo tumor testing to see if they carry Lynch syndrome, the most common inherited cause of colorectal cancer, according to a new guideline was published in Gastroenterology, the official journal of the American Gastroenterological Association.

Astronomers find galaxy cluster with bursting heart
An international team of astronomers has discovered a gargantuan galaxy cluster with a core bursting with new stars -- an incredibly rare find.

Southern Ocean carbon sink has renewed strength
The Southern Ocean has increased its uptake of atmospheric carbon dioxide again, after showing signs of slowing uptake in the 1990s, according to a new report from Peter Landsch├╝tzer and colleagues.

Female mice sing for sex
Male mice belt out love songs to females during courtship.

Golden Goose Award to Cohen and Small for work on hypsographic demography
Drs. Joel E. Cohen and Christopher Small will receive the Golden Goose Award with two other teams of researchers at a Sept.

Melatonin and multiple sclerosis: Why MS symptoms may improve as the days get shorter
Researchers from the Ann Romney Center for Neurologic Diseases at Brigham and Women's Hospital and their collaborators have found an explanation that could lead to a deeper understanding of multiple sclerosis and more targeted treatment options for patients.

New protein manufacturing process unveiled
Researchers from Northwestern University and Yale University have developed a user-friendly technology to help scientists understand how proteins work and fix them when they are broken.

In year of US wildfires, Nepal earthquake, NSF awards $27.5 million in hazards research grants
Wildfires raged through Idaho, Washington, Oregon and California this summer, taking the lives of firefighters and forcing thousands to flee their homes.

Replicating liver cells for fast drug testing
Scientists have developed a new technique that produces a user friendly, low cost, tissue-engineered pseudo-organ.

African dams linked to over 1 million malaria cases annually
A new peer-reviewed study that for the first time correlates the location of large dams with the incidence of malaria and quantifies the impacts across sub-Saharan Africa.

NASA's RapidScat looks at Tropical Storm Henri's winds
NASA's RapidScat instrument analyzed the sustained surface winds of Tropical Storm Henri on Sept.

Drunk, distracted drivers are double dangers
An intoxicated driver who is further distracted is an accident waiting to happen.

Call for government to curb the production and sale of cheap salty junk food
A World Health Organization adviser is calling for the government to stop food manufacturers and distributors producing and selling unhealthy, cheap, salty junk food.

Errant gene turns cells into mobile cancer factories
Salk scientists have found a key molecular mechanism that underlies deadly behavior in hard-to-treat breast cancer.

Underground magma ocean could explain Io's 'misplaced' volcanoes
Tides flowing in a subsurface ocean of molten rock, or magma, could explain why Jupiter's moon Io appears to have its volcanoes in the 'wrong' place.

New species emerges from the dark zone
James Cook University scientists have played a role in a discovery that may alter the known history of humankind.

Discovery offers hope for treating leukemia relapse post-transplant
Targeting exhausted immune cells may change the prognosis for patients with acute myeloid leukemia relapse after a stem cell transplant, according to Penn State College of Medicine researchers.

Researchers identify 3 new fossil whale species of New Zealand
University of Otago paleontology researchers are continuing to rewrite the history of New Zealand's ancient whales by describing two further genera and three species of fossil baleen whales.

Less is more
Protein labeling with synthetic fluorescent probes is a key technology in chemical biology and biomedical research.

How to beat the climate crisis? Start with carrots
A new policy paper by UC Berkeley researchers says building coalitions through the support of clean-energy industries will speed up progress in tackling climate change.

Avoidable risk factors take an increasing toll on health worldwide
A wide range of avoidable risk factors to health -- ranging from air pollution to poor diets to unsafe water -- account for a growing number of deaths and a significant amount of disease burden, according to a new analysis of 79 risks in 188 countries.

Clearing a path for cancer research
Researchers at EMBL's European Bioinformatics Institute have developed a new method for studying the targets and effects of cancer drugs using data from discovery mass spectrometry experiments.

Poor diet and high blood pressure now number 1 risk factors for death
New global burden of disease study finds a huge amount of deaths worldwide are due to preventable risk-factors.

NIST physicists show 'molecules' made of light may be possible
It's not lightsaber time, not yet. But a team including theoretical physicists from the National Institute of Standards and Technology has taken another step toward building objects out of photons, and the findings hint that weightless particles of light can be joined into a sort of 'molecule' with its own peculiar force.

Investing in diversity
With an eye toward improving material science through increased diverse perspectives, the National Science Foundation awarded six Partnerships for Research and Education in Materials awards this year, in its fifth such competition since 2004.

Protein aggregation after heat shock is an organized, reversible cellular response
Protein aggregates that form after a cell is exposed to high, non-lethal temperatures appear to be part of an organized response to stress, and not the accumulation of damaged proteins en route to destruction.

12+ hour hospital nursing shifts linked to increased risk of burnout and job dissatisfaction
Working 12+ hour shifts is linked to a heightened risk of burnout, job dissatisfaction, and intention to leave among hospital nurses in 12 European countries, finds research published in the online journal BMJ Open.

Changing patient's position helps effectiveness of colonoscopy -- especially on one side
Having patients lie on their left side while the right side of their colon is being examined can result in more polyps being found, thus increasing the effectiveness of colonoscopy for colorectal cancer screening, according to a study in the September issue of GIE: Gastrointestinal Endoscopy, the monthly peer-reviewed scientific journal of the American Society for Gastrointestinal Endoscopy.

Major complication of Parkinson's therapy explained
Researchers have discovered why long-term use of levodopa treatment commonly leads to a side effect that can be as debilitating as Parkinson's disease itself.

Rare plant reveals its recipe for potent chemotherapeutic agent
Inconveniently, the only current method to synthesize the chemotherapy agent etoposide is by using extracts from a plant, but researchers have successfully manipulated Nicotiana benthamiana (tobacco) to create a more immediate and potent precursor.

Understanding of complex networks could help unify gravity and quantum mechanics
Mathematicians investigating one of science's great questions -- how to unite the physics of the very big with that of the very small -- have discovered that when the understanding of complex networks such as the brain or the Internet is applied to geometry the results match up with quantum behavior.

A snapshot of Americans' knowledge about science
There are substantial differences among Americans when it comes to knowledge and understanding of science topics, especially by educational levels as well as by gender, age, race and ethnicity, according to a new Pew Research Center report.

Genetic mutants alter entire biological communities
Scientists from Trinity College Dublin have discovered that one gene mutation in a single species can trigger dramatic changes in whole biological communities; these changes can be as great as those caused by the extinction of a top predator.

Kansas State University study uncovers new approaches for sorghum breeders
A Kansas State University agronomist says a recent study on plant height in sorghum will likely be applicable to other economically important traits, such as crop yield.

Key without a lock: Only the balance between receptors controls blood vessel development
Tie1 is a receptor on the surface of blood vessel wall cells whose binding partner has not yet been found.

Sticklebacks urinate differently when nestbuilding
Fish also build nests. Among sticklebacks this is done by the male, requiring so many of his resources that he cannot function normally while at work: he loses his ability to produce urine normally.

Chad Mirkin receives $400,000 Sackler Prize in Convergence Research
Northwestern University scientist Chad A. Mirkin, one of the world's leaders in nanotechnology research and its application, has been awarded the inaugural $400,000 Raymond and Beverly Sackler Prize in Convergence Research from the National Academy of Sciences.

NOAA awards $2.75 million for marine mammal rescue efforts
Today, NOAA Fisheries announced the award of $2.75 million in grant funding to partner organizations in 16 states to respond to and rehabilitate stranded marine mammals and collect data on their health.

Sensitivity of smell cilia depends on location and length in nasal cavity
Like the hairs they resemble, cilia come in all lengths, from short to long.

UEA research shows revived oceanic CO2 uptake
The Southern Ocean has begun to absorb more atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2).

Scientists from CU Denver, CU Anschutz help discover new ancient ancestor
An international team of scientists, including one from the University of Colorado Denver and another from the University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus in Aurora, announced the discovery Thursday of a new species of hominin, a small creature with a tiny brain that opens the door to a new way of thinking about our ancient ancestors.

Using magnetic permeability to store information
Scientists have made promising steps in developing a new magnetic memory technology, which is far less susceptible to corruption by magnetic fields or thermal exposure than conventional memory.

Visual details released of recently discovered methane seep
Researchers at Scripps Institution of Oceanography at UC San Diego have released details of a deep-sea site roughly 48 kilometers (30 miles) west of Del Mar (just north of San Diego, Calif.) where methane is seeping out of the seafloor, the first such finding in the region.

Research reveals the placenta's oxygen tanks for early embryos
A new role for the placenta has been revealed by University of Manchester scientists who have identified sites which store, and gradually release, oxygen for newly formed embryos in the weeks after the baby's heart is developed.

Reduced heart rate variability may indicate greater vulnerability to PTSD
A prospective longitudinal study of US Marines suggests that reduced heart rate variability -- the changing time interval between heartbeats -- may be a contributing risk factor for post-traumatic stress disorder.

New species of human relative discovered in S.A. cave
The discovery of a new species of human relative was announced today, Sept.

Watch out: If you've got a smart watch, hackers could get your data
Using a homegrown app on a Samsung Gear Live smart watch, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign were able to guess what a user was typing through data 'leaks' produced by the motion sensors on smart watches.

Breast cancer incidence, death rates rising in some economically transitioning countries
A new study finds breast cancer incidence and death rates are increasing in several low and middle income countries, even as death rates have declined in most high income countries, despite increasing or stable incidence rates.

Autonomy, advanced materials in focus as ONR, Indian scientists meet
Answering the call from the Chief of Naval Operations to help build and strengthen international partnerships, the Office of Naval Research (ONR) and ONR Global have increased scientific cooperation with the Indian government in recent weeks, including a series of high-profile meetings in India Aug.

Cell-surface discovery could fundamentally alter cancer treatment
Researchers have discovered a new strategy for attacking cancer cells that could fundamentally alter the way doctors treat and prevent the deadly disease.

Frozen embryos as successful as fresh embryos in IVF
IVF cycles using embryos that have been frozen and thawed are just as successful as fresh embryos according to a new UNSW report.

NASA looks at Japan's torrential rains and winds from twin tropical cyclones
Japan has experienced large rainfall that caused flooding and large evacuations as a result of two weather systems.

Surgery improves quality of life for patients with chronic sinus infection, sleep dysfunction
Patients with chronic rhinosinusitis (sinus infection) and obstructive sleep apnea report a poor quality of life, which is substantially improved following endoscopic sinus surgery, according to a study published online by JAMA Otolaryngology-Head & Neck Surgery.

Neolithic skeleton reveals early history of rickets
Rickets has been identified in a Neolithic skeleton from the Scottish island of Tiree, making it the earliest case of the disease in the UK.

Telomerase can be successfully targeted by a highly specific inhibitor
New research from The Wistar Institute shows exactly how a known, highly selective small molecule telomerase inhibitor is able to bind with the enzyme, thus opening the possibility of developing more telomerase inhibitors that target this pocket of telomerase and could be clinically effective in a wide variety of cancer types.

UMD receives $2.1 million from state to create endowed chairs in math and computer science
The University of Maryland will establish two endowed chairs--in math and computer science -- with $2.1 million received from the Maryland E-Nnovation Initiative (MEI).

SLAC's ultrafast 'electron camera' visualizes ripples in 2-D material
New research led by scientists from the Department of Energy's SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory and Stanford University shows how individual atoms move in trillionths of a second to form wrinkles on a three-atom-thick material.

Molecular culprits driving most common form of glaucoma discovered
African Americans are particularly prone to developing the most common form of glaucoma -- a leading cause of blindness -- but how genetics can increase one's risk of getting the disease has been poorly understood.

Ultrafast uncoupled magnetism in atoms
Future computers will require a magnetic material which can be manipulated ultra-rapidly by breaking the strong magnetic coupling.

16 top scientists and educators announce collaboration to rescue US biomedical research
A diverse team of 16 prominent scientists and educators today announced the launch of a high-profile collaboration that seeks to leverage knowledge from the scientific community to confront the dangers to the US biomedical science enterprise.

Blood cancers develop when immune cell DNA editing hits off-target spots
Editing errors in the DNA of developing T and B cells can cause blood cancers.

DNDi and Eisai Co. Ltd. to test drug candidate for eumycetoma
The Drugs for Neglected Diseases initiative (DNDi) and the Japanese pharmaceutical company Eisai Co.

Bringing 'dark data' into the light: Best practices for digitizing herbarium collections
North American herbaria curate approximately 74 million specimens, but only a fraction have been digitized.

Financial distress can hinder success of academically prepared minority students
A new study of more than 500 black and Latino college students has confirmed that many encounter obstacles after enrolling in college without adequate financial resources.

Struggles with sleep may affect heart disease risk
Young and middle-aged adults who get too much or too little sleep or have poor quality sleep are at higher risk for the early signs of heart disease than those who get adequate, good quality sleep.

How can we address the gap between climate science and policy?
In this Policy Forum, Jonas Meckling et al. discuss the need to close the gap between climate science and policy, arguing that targeted policies and economic incentives are the answer, rather than broad carbon taxes.

When it comes to touch, to give is to receive
Have you ever touched someone else and wondered why his or her skin felt so incredibly soft?

Satellite sees Tropical Storm Linda weakening near Baja California
NOAA's GOES-West satellite saw a much weaker Tropical Storm Linda near the Baja California Peninsula of Mexico on September 10.

NYU researcher develops unique delivery system for dual gene and drug therapies
The National Science Foundation recently funded research at New York University aimed at developing an engineered protein-lipid system that simultaneously delivers genes and drugs for the potential treatment of multi-drug resistant cancer cells.

Problematic relationship: Small brain models distort contact intensity between neurons
Even the most powerful computers in the world can only simulate 1 percent of the nerve cells due to memory constraints.

Grant supports development of software to judge quality of electronic public health data
A $381,000, two-year grant from the National Library of Medicine at the National Institutes of Health supports development by the Regenstrief Institute and the Indiana University Richard M.

Pancreatic cancer stem cells could be 'suffocated' by an anti-diabetic drug
A new study shows that pancreatic cancer stem cells are virtually addicted to oxygen-based metabolism, and could be 'suffocated' with a drug already used to treat diabetes.

Mental math helps monk parakeets find their place in pecking order
A study of aggression in monk parakeets suggests that where they stand in the pecking order is a function of the bird's carefully calibrated perceptions of the rank of their fellow-feathered friends.

Marginalized Vancouver residents dying at 8 times the national average
Marginalized residents of Vancouver's Downtown Eastside are dying at more than eight times the national average, and treatable conditions are the greatest risk factors for mortality, researchers at the University of British Columbia have found.

Clemson professor receives grant to delve into the foundation of scientific philosophy
Tom Oberdan, associate professor of science and technology in society, has received a Scholars Award of $128,000 from the National Science Foundation to explore the 20th-century origins of how philosophers think about science.

Southern Ocean removing carbon dioxide from atmosphere more efficiently
Since 2002, the Southern Ocean has been removing more of the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, according to two new studies.

Registration now open for 'The Future of the Commons: Data, Software and Beyond...'
Registration is now open for 'The Future of the Commons: Data, Software and Beyond.' To be held Wednesday, Nov.

Massive galaxy cluster found to be bursting with new stars
An international team of astronomers has discovered a distant massive galaxy cluster with a core bursting with new stars.

Researchers reveal how NFL game outcomes affect stock returns of stadium sponsors
The researchers say it's the first study to examine the financial impact of professional sport match outcomes on companies that sponsor stadiums.

New species of human relative discovered
An international research team, which includes NYU anthropologists Scott Williams and Myra Laird, has discovered a new species of a human relative.

Satellite spots Jimena's remnants north of Hawaiian Islands
NOAA's GOES-East satellite captured an infrared image of the remnants of what was Tropical Storm Jimena as it continued moving past the northern Hawaiian Islands on Sept.

Gut bacteria may impact body weight, fat and good cholesterol levels
Link discovered between bacteria in the gut and body weight, triglyceride and good cholesterol levels.

Vision testing an effective tool for detecting concussion on the sidelines
Meta-analysis finds a test of rapid number naming detected concussion 86 percent of the time among youth, collegiate and professional athletes.

Revived oceanic CO2 uptake
A decade ago scientists feared that the ability of the Southern Ocean to absorb additional atmospheric CO2 would soon be stalled.

You'd have to be smart to walk this lazy... and people are
Those of you who spend hours at the gym with the aim of burning as many calories as possible may be disappointed to learn that all the while your nervous system is subconsciously working against you.

Keeping gut bacteria in balance could help delay age-related diseases, UCLA study finds
Why do some people remain physically and mentally healthy into their 80s and beyond, while others age faster and suffer serious diseases decades earlier?

NAS prize in convergence research awarded to Chad Mirkin
Chad A. Mirkin is the inaugural recipient of the Raymond and Beverly Sackler Prize in Convergence Research, the National Academy of Sciences announced today.

Mental math helps monk parakeets find their place in pecking order
A study of aggression in monk parakeets suggests that where they stand in the pecking order is a function of the bird's carefully calibrated perceptions of the rank of their fellow-feathered friends.

New DNA testing for liver cancer could improve survival
Detection of small fragments of tumor DNA, known as circulating tumor DNA, in a patient's pre-surgery serum samples predicts early recurrence of hepatocellular carcinoma and may guide treatment, according to a study published in Cellular and Molecular Gastroenterology and Hepatology.

What does a high carbon world mean for humanity?
Atmospheric CO2 levels are increasing and face humanity with pressing questions about its future in a high carbon world.

Hastings Center awarded NIH grant
Prenatal testing is changing dramatically. With greatly expanded low-cost genetic tests prospective parents will soon be able to learn far more, far earlier, than ever before about their fetuses' medical conditions and risks, and some nonmedical traits.

Brain cells get tweaked 'on the go'
Researchers from the MRC Centre for Developmental Neurobiology (MRC CDN) at the Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology & Neuroscience (IoPPN), King's College London, have discovered a new molecular 'switch' that controls the properties of neurons in response to changes in the activity of their neural network.

Facebook data suggests people from higher social class have fewer international friends
New study using Facebook network data, including a dataset of over 57 billion friendships, shows correlation between higher social class and fewer international friendships.

Avoidable risk factors take an increasing toll on health worldwide
A wide range of avoidable risk factors to health -- ranging from air pollution to poor diets to unsafe water -- account for a growing number of deaths and a significant amount of disease burden, according to a new analysis of 79 risks in 188 countries.

Your stomach bacteria determines which diet is best for weight reduction
New research enables 'tailored' diet advice -- based on our personal gut microbiome -- for persons who want to lose weight and reduce the risk of disease.

Researchers find neuroanatomical signature for schizophrenia
Findings indicate the right anterior insula of brain may play a role in schizophrenia as well as other Axis I disorders such as bipolar disorder, depression, etc. across ethnic groups despite differences in symptoms.

People worldwide -- even nomads in Tanzania -- think of colors the same way
Would a color by any other name be thought of in the same way, regardless of the language used to describe it?

Archaeologists piece together how crew survived 1813 shipwreck in Alaska
Working closely with the US Forest Service and the Sitka Tribe of Alaska, an international team of researchers funded by the National Science Foundation has begun to piece together an archaeological and historical narrative of how the crew of the wrecked 19th century Russian-American Company sailing ship Neva survived the harsh subarctic winter.

Solving a genetic mystery: Bridging diagnostic discovery through social media
In a report in the journal Molecular Cell, Schaaf, Potts, and their colleagues (including first authors Yi-Heng Hao of UT Southwestern and Michael D.

Kessler TBI-MEM study provides Class 1 evidence for cognitive training efficacy in TBI
Kessler Foundation researchers published results of a randomized clinical trial of a cognitive intervention to improve learning and memory in individuals with traumatic brain injury -- the TBI-MEM trial.

Melatonin explains the mystery of seasonal multiple sclerosis flare-ups
Seasonal flare-ups in patients with multiple sclerosis are caused by plummeting levels of melatonin in the spring and summer, according to research published Sept.

EARTH: Closing the gap in the tetrapod fossil record
In a study covered by EARTH Magazine, geoscientists identified fossils that are helping close the 15-million-year period in the fossil record known as Romer's Gap -- the time from when fish showed early evidence of arms and legs until we definitively see four-legged land animals.

First new cache-coherence mechanism in 30 years
At the International Conference on Parallel Architectures and Compilation Techniques in October, MIT researchers unveil the first fundamentally new approach to cache coherence in more than three decades.

Megathrust quake faults weaker and less stressed than thought
Some of the inner workings of Earth's subduction zones and their 'megathrust' faults are revealed in a paper published today in the journal Science.

Fossil trove adds a new limb to human family tree
Working in a cave complex deep beneath South Africa's Malmani dolomites, an international team of scientists has brought to light an unprecedented trove of hominin fossils -- more than 1,500 well-preserved bones and teeth -- representing the largest, most complete set of such remains found to date in Africa.

Ph.D. student receives NASA fellowship to study early solar system materials
University of Houston Ph.D. student Andy Kerekgyarto was awarded a fellowship through NASA's Earth and Space Science Fellowship program to support analysis of materials within one of the largest chondrite meteorites found on Earth.

Needed: Soft robots to solve hard problems
Seeking to explore potential applications for soft, deformable robots, a largely unexplored area of robotics engineering, Dmitry Berenson, assistant professor of computer science at Worcester Polytechnic Institute, and Cagdas Onal, assistant professor of mechanical engineering at WPI, have secured nearly $600,000 from the National Science Foundation for two projects that could point toward practical uses in medicine, manufacturing, and disaster response.

Oxygen is not definitive evidence of life on habitable extrasolar planets
A research assistant professor Norio Narita of the Astrobiology Center of NINS, which was founded in April 2015, and an associate professor Shigeyuki Masaoka, of the Institute of Molecular Science of NINS, have presented a novel hypothesis that it could be possible for planets to have large quantities of abiotic (non-biologically produced) oxygen.

UNC smart cells teach neurons damaged by Parkinson's to heal themselves
As a potential treatment for Parkinson's disease, scientists at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill have created smarter immune cells that produce and deliver a healing protein to the brain while also teaching neurons to begin making the protein for themselves.

Identified genetic interaction offers possible new target for glaucoma therapy
Scientists at the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine have elucidated a genetic interaction that may prove key to the development and progression of glaucoma, a blinding neurodegenerative disease that affects tens of millions of people worldwide and is a leading cause of irreversible blindness.

Modeling the helicase to understand hepatitis C
NS3 is an enzyme specific to the hepatitis C virus.

How genetic testing can improve care for children with epilepsy
The steps involved in evaluating and diagnosing patients with epilepsy are complicated.

Jeong Ho Lee of KAIST receives the 2015 Pediatric Epilepsies Research Award
The Citizen United for Research in Epilepsy (CURE) announced on Sept.

NASA sees Tropical Storm Kilo affected by wind shear
Strong vertical wind shear is taking its toll on the now weaker Tropical Storm Kilo in the Northwestern Pacific Ocean. 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