Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

February 05, 2016
Secondhand smoke: Nations producing less greenhouse gas most vulnerable to climate change
A new study by University of Queensland and WCS shows a dramatic global mismatch between nations producing the most greenhouse gases and the ones most vulnerable to the effects of climate change.

The geometry of histamine understood by Russican scientists
Scientists from Chemistry Department of Lomonosov Moscow State University had obtained a gas phase structure of histamine -- a substance that is responsible for allergic reactions.

Discovery: Many white-tailed deer have malaria
By chance,scientists have discovered a malaria parasite that infects white-tailed deer.

Central Appalachia flatter due to mountaintop mining
Forty years of mountaintop coal mining have made parts of Central Appalachia 40 percent flatter than they were before excavation, researchers say.

Study evaluates pay-for-performance program for Medicaid children in an ACO
The first pay-for-performance (P4P) evaluation of pediatricians under a full-risk Medicaid accountable care organization (ACO) for children shows P4P incentives were partially responsible for higher performance on quality measures across Partners for Kids' primary care network of employed and affiliated physicians.

Petroleum reservoir simulation using super element method
The study conducted by researches of Kazan Federal University describes the theoretical framework and results of using a rapid three-dimensional super element model of oil field development.

DFG welcomes Imboden Report on the Excellence Initiative
President Peter Strohschneider say the report is 'a clear call for targeted funding of top-level research at universities' and 'Sets the course for new federal-state initiative'.

Man-made underwater sound may have wider ecosystem effects than previously thought
Underwater sound linked to human activity could alter the behaviour of seabed creatures that play a vital role in marine ecosystems, according to new research from the University of Southampton.

Motorboat noise gives predators a deadly advantage
An international research team found that noise from passing motorboats increases stress levels in young coral reef fish and reduces their ability to flee from predators.

Forest losses increase local temperatures
An article by JRC scientists published today in Science, reveals that the biophysical effects of forest losses substantially affect the local climate by altering the average temperature and even more the maximum summer temperatures and the diurnal and annual variations.

Milk, vitamin supplements and exercise raise children's vitamin D levels
Sufficient intake of fortified dairy products is of significant importance for the serum vitamin D level in primary school children, shows a new study from the University of Eastern Finland.

Uncovering secrets of elastin's flexibility during assembly
Elastin is a crucial building block in our bodies -- its flexibility allows skin to stretch and twist, blood vessels to expand and relax with every heartbeat, and lungs to swell and contract with each breath.

Clinicians' exposure to basic science articles has significantly declined
Breaking up may not be that hard to do after all.

Most internet resources for IPF are inaccurate, incomplete and outdated
After evaluating content on idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis on almost 200 websites, researchers with medical backgrounds found that the information on IPF from these sites was often incomplete, inaccurate and outdated.

Where infants sleep may affect how long they are breastfed
A new study indicates that mothers who frequently sleep, or bed-share, with their infants consistently breastfeed for longer than mothers who do not bed-share.

Penn Med and LouLou Foundation create program of excellence in pediatric rare disorder
The London-based LouLou Foundation and the Orphan Disease Center of the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania have established a Program of Excellence to develop effective treatments for children with CDKL5, a rare X-chromosome-linked genetic disorder that causes severe neuro-developmental impairment and early-onset, difficult-to-control seizures.

NIH researchers identify striking genomic signature shared by 5 types of cancer
National Institutes of Health researchers have identified a striking signature in tumor DNA that occurs in five different types of cancer.

The iron stepping stones to better wearable tech without semiconductors
The way to better wearable electronics is dotted with iron steppingstones.

Concussions -- researchers try to reduce stigma of reporting
Researchers are working to reduce the stigma surrounding concussions and reporting concussions.

Prunetin prolongs lifespan in male fruit flies and enhances overall health
Here's a reason for men to eat their lima beans -- if research in male fruit flies holds up, it might help you live longer.

Record Missouri flooding was manmade calamity, scientist says
Why was the New Year's flood in Missouri so bad?

Cells that show where things are going
Neurobiologists characterize nerve cells that detect motion by light changes.

Online shopping might not be as green as we thought
A study by researchers in the Delaware Center for Transportation provides insight into the impacts of home shopping on vehicle operations and greenhouse gas emissions.

Snake gait
Snake locomotion is a source of inspiration for technology: graceful, silent, adaptable and efficient, it can be implemented on devices designed for the most diverse applications, from space exploration to medicine.

Pioneering discovery leads to potential preventive treatment for sudden cardiac death
Roughly 15 years ago, a team of Vermont researchers discovered the precise malfunction of a specific protein in the heart that leads to hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, a common culprit in cases of sudden death in young athletes.

'Cannibalism' between stars
Stars do not accumulate their final mass steadily, but in a series of violent events manifesting themselves as sharp stellar brightening.

Proteomics and precision medicine
Researchers at the University of Iowa have used personalized proteomics to devise a successful treatment strategy for a patient with uveitis, a potentially blinding eye disease that can have many causes, making it particularly difficult to diagnose and treat effectively.

Radar reveals the hidden secrets of wombat warrens
For the first time ever, researchers from the University of Adelaide have been able to non-invasively study the inner workings of wombat warrens, with a little help from ground-penetrating radar.

India to become second EMBC Associate Member State
The Government of the Republic of India, EMBO and its intergovernmental funding body, the European Molecular Biology Conference, have signed a Cooperation Agreement to strengthen scientific interaction and collaborative research between India and Europe.

Scientists discover molecular link between psychiatric disorders and type 2 diabetes
In a new report appearing in the Feb. 2016 issue of The FASEB Journal, scientists show that a gene called 'DISC1,' which is believed to play a role in mental health disorders, such as schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and some forms of depression, influences the function of pancreatic beta cells which produce insulin to maintain normal blood glucose levels.

The mystery of the Red Sea
An international team of biologists including researchers from the Moscow State University discovered new species of fluorescent polyps living in colonies on the shells of gastropods.

Possible marker for recurring HPV-linked oropharyngeal cancers
A look-back analysis of HPV infection antibodies in patients treated for oropharyngeal (mouth and throat) cancers linked to HPV infection suggests at least one of the antibodies could be useful in identifying those at risk for a recurrence of the cancer, say scientists at The Johns Hopkins University.

Using the physics of your perfect pancake to help save sight
Understanding the textures and patterns of pancakes is helping UCL scientists improve surgical methods for treating glaucoma.

PPPL physicists help celebrate first hydrogen plasma on W7-X
Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory (PPPL) physicists collaborating on the Wendelstein 7-X (W 7-X) stellarator fusion energy device in Greifswald, Germany were on hand for the Feb.

Strathclyde computer science researcher wins prestigious award
A computer science researcher at the University of Strathclyde has won a prestigious Scotland-wide award from the Carnegie Trust for the Universities of Scotland.

GW researcher tests new method for rapid detection of infection in wounds
A new method for detection of infection in wounds could take physicians less than a minute to complete, rather than the current 24 hours it takes for diagnosis, according to research by the George Washington University's Victoria Shanmugam, M.D.

Motorboat noise gives predators a deadly advantage
Dr Stephen Simpson and his international research team found that noise from passing motorboats increases stress levels in young coral reef fish and reduces their ability to flee from predators.

Pilot study shows meditation can help US veterans manage chronic pain
A small pilot study conducted at the Washington, DC Veterans Affairs Medical Center reveals that veterans who practiced meditation reported a 20 percent reduction in pain intensity (how bad pain hurts or feels), as well as pain interference, how pain interferes with everyday aspects of life, such as sleep, mood, and activity level.

First reported autopsy of patient with MERS coronavirus infection provides critical insights
Since 2012, at least 1,500 individuals have developed Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS), resulting in more than 500 fatalities.

Chromosomes reconfigure as cell division ends
Cells reach a state called senescence when they stop dividing in response to DNA damage.

When older adults stop driving, it may impact health and well-being
In a new study published in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society, researchers reviewed 16 studies that examined the health and well-being of older adults after they stopped driving.

Protein that switches cancers from inflammation to proliferation identified
PAD4 has been observed in cancers but its role was unclear.

AMP updates pathology residency curriculum recommendations
Te AMP paper provides residency programs with specific recommendations from subject matter experts on 10 major molecular pathology topics: basic molecular pathology goals and laboratory management; basic concepts in molecular biology and genetics; technology; inherited disorders; oncology; infectious diseases; pharmacogenetics; histocompatibility and identity; genomics, and information management.

Cancer treatment: Therapeutic approach gives hope for the treatment of multiple myeloma
A new therapeutic approach tested by a team from Maisonneuve-Rosemont Hospital and the University of Montreal gives promising results for the treatment of multiple myeloma, a cancer of the bone marrow currently considered incurable with conventional chemotherapy.

Multinational companies perform majority of US business R&D
Multinational companies perform the majority of all research and development (R&D) done by companies located in the Unites States, according to a new report from the National Center for Science and Engineering Statistics.

NASA's GPM satellite examines violent thunderstorms
Severe weather moved through the southern US on Feb. 2-3, and NASA's Global Precipitation Measurement or GPM core satellite examined the violent thunderstorms.

First-of-its-kind study explains why rest is critical after a concussion
Georgetown University Medical Center neuroscientists say rest -- for more than a day -- is critical for allowing the brain to reset neural networks and repair any short-term injury.

Health care for older adults should honor diversity
Delivering high-quality health care for this ethnically diverse group means that all clinicians, no matter where they practice, should develop interpersonal skills that enable them to navigate culture to meet healthcare needs.

Experts establish standards for psychosocial care of children with cancer and their families
Children with cancer and their families often experience considerable psychological and social challenges during and after treatment.

A flawed measure
BMI is not an accurate measure of health, according to research by UCSB psychologist Jeffrey Hunger and colleagues

Gene family turns cancer cells into aggressive stem cells that keep growing
An examination of 130 gene expression studies in 10 solid cancers has found that when any of four related genes is overexpressed, patients have much worse outcomes, including reduced survival.

Kaiser Permanente study finds effectiveness of routine Tdap booster wanes in adolescents
A new study from Kaiser Permanente's Vaccine Study Center found that the Tdap booster vaccine provides moderate protection against whooping cough during the first year after vaccination, but its effectiveness wanes to less than 9 percent after four years among teenagers who have received only a newer form of the whooping cough vaccine (acellular pertussis vaccine) as infants and children.

Biophysics: Partitioning by collision
An ensemble consisting of a binary mixture of particles of equal size can partition itself into its component fractions -- provided that the two species differ in their diffusion constants.

From allergens to anodes: Pollen derived battery electrodes
Pollens, the bane of allergy sufferers, could represent a boon for battery makers: Recent research has suggested their potential use as anodes in lithium-ion batteries.

Aggression causes new nerve cells to be generated in the brain
A group of neurobiologists from Russia and the USA, including Dmitry Smagin, Tatyana Michurina, and Grigori Enikolopov from Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology, have proven experimentally that aggression has an influence on the production of new nerve cells in the brain.

Climate change's frost harms early plant reproduction, Dartmouth study finds
Climate change may harm early-flowering plants not through plant-pollinator mismatch but through frost damage, a Dartmouth College-led study shows.

Single-lesion biopsy may be insufficient to choose therapy targeting resistance mutations
When metastatic tumors driven by drug-targetable genetic mutations become resistant to a targeted therapy drug, the usual practice is to test a single metastatic lesion for new mutations that can guide the selection of next-line therapies.

New analysis method may reduce need for invasive biopsies
Scientists have identified a quantitative method to measure changes in biomarkers, which may reduce or eliminate the need for invasive biopsies.

Studies link healthy workforces to positive stock market performance
A new study finds companies with healthy workforces appear to have a competitive edge in the stock market.

Assessing the biosimilarity of protein drugs: New study shows method's precision
First-ever interlaboratory study of four versions of a therapeutic protein drug -- all manufactured from living cells -- reports that an established analytical tool akin to magnetic resonance imaging reliably assessed the atomic structures of the biologically similar products, yielding the equivalent of a fingerprint for each.

New assay detects persistent disease in leukemia patients thought to be in remission
A study in The Journal of Molecular Diagnostics describes a new personalized DNA-based digital assay that detects persistent chronic myeloid leukemia in 81 percent of samples taken from a group of patients thought to be in remission.

New solution to economic eyesores?
Michigan State University researchers will use nearly $250,000 from the US Department of Commerce to test whether recycling and repurposing building materials is an effective solution to economic blight. 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