Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

May 26, 2016
Free colonoscopy program for uninsured detects cancer at earlier stage and is cost neutral
For uninsured patients who are at a high risk for colorectal cancer (CRC), performing free screening colonoscopies can identify cancer at an earlier stage and appears to be cost neutral from a hospital system perspective, according to study results published online in the Journal of the American College of Surgeons ahead of print publication.

Why everyone wants to help the sick -- but not the unemployed
New research from Aarhus BSS at Aarhus University explains why health-care costs are running out of control, while costs to unemployment protection are kept in line.

'Phage' fishing yields new weapon against antibiotic resistance
Yale researchers were fishing for a new weapon against antibiotic resistance and found one floating in a Connecticut pond, they report May 26, 2016, in the journal Scientific Reports.

Exploring the rise and fall of alcohol-related mortality in Scotland
New research has found that the rise in alcohol-related mortality during the 1990s and early 2000s in Scotland, and the subsequent decline, were likely to be explained in part by increasing then decreasing alcohol affordability.

Deep learning applied to drug discovery and repurposing
Scientists from Insilico Medicine in collaboration with Datalytic Solutions and Mind Research Network trained deep neural networks to predict the therapeutic use of large number of multiple drugs using gene expression data obtained from high-throughput experiments on human cell lines.

Antarctic fossils reveal creatures weren't safer in the south during dinosaur extinction
A study of more than 6,000 marine fossils from the Antarctic shows that the mass extinction event that killed the dinosaurs was sudden and just as deadly to life in the polar regions.

SwRI scientists discover evidence of ice age at martian north pole
Using radar data collected by NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, a Southwest Research Institute-led team found evidence of an ice age recorded in the polar deposits of Mars.

How the brain makes -- and breaks -- a habit
Not all habits are bad. Some are even necessary. But inability to switch from acting habitually to acting in a deliberate way can underlie addiction and obsessive compulsive disorders.

Scientists illuminate a hidden regulator in gene transcription
Gene transcription is the process by which DNA is copied and synthesized as messenger RNA (mRNA) -- which delivers its genetic blueprints to the cell's protein-making machinery.

Beating the limits of the light microscope, one photon at a time
Colorado State University scientists are pushing the limits of a technique called super-resolution microscopy, opening potential new pathways to illuminating, for example, individual cell processes in living tissue at unprecedented resolutions.

The developmental origins of cultural learning
The research featured in this special section focuses on children's development across a wide range of global contexts and caregiving settings.

University shares in £5.3 million funding to safeguard national infrastructure
The University of Southampton is to share in £5.3 million of funding to help Government and industry to plan and design a robust national infrastructure system.

Sylvester to present latest cancer care and research at ASCO annual meeting
Physician-scientists and researchers from Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine will present a selection of their latest cancer care and research at this year's American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) Annual Meeting, June 3-7, at McCormick Place in Chicago, Ill.

Supermassive black hole wind can stop new stars from forming
Scientists uncover new class of galaxies with supermassive black hole winds energetic enough to suppress future star formation.

Fasting-like diet reduces multiple sclerosis symptoms
A mouse study, followed by a human study, indicates that the fasting-mimicking diet holds promise as a treatment for autoimmune diseases.

Argonne technology wins 2016 TechConnect National Innovation Award
A Graphene-nanodiamond solution for achieving superlubricity that was developed at the US Department of Energy's Argonne National Laboratory has won a 2016 TechConnect National Innovation Award.

NASA's GPM satellite sees potential Atlantic tropical cyclone
An area of low pressure designated as System 90L, located in the Atlantic Ocean between Bermuda and the Bahamas is being monitored today for possible development into a tropical or subtropical cyclone.

Researcher 2016 Texas Inventor of the Year for treatments for breast, prostate cancer
Marc Cox, Ph.D., associate professor in The University of Texas at El Paso's Department of Biological Sciences, has been selected as the 2016 Texas Inventor of the Year for his treatments for breast and prostate cancer developed at UTEP.

Difficult decisions involving perception increase activity in brain's insular cortex, study finds
As the difficulty of making a decision based on sensory evidence increases, activity in the brain's insular cortex also increases, according to researchers at Georgia State University.

New discovery from the molecular machinery for depression and addiction
Researchers at Aarhus University have described how a group of the brain's transport proteins with important roles in depression and dependence overcome the step which limits their effectiveness.

A look beyond the horizon of events
Black holes are still very mysterious celestial bodies which do not, however, escape the laws of thermodynamics.

How prions kill neurons: New culture system shows early toxicity to dendritic spines
Prion diseases are fatal and incurable neurodegenerative conditions of humans and animals.

Odor alternative
Harvard Medical School scientists have uncovered a new and different way that some odors are sensed in the 'olfactory necklace,' a subsystem of neurons they explored in mice that may have more in common with taste than with smell.

Scientists uncover potential trigger to kill cancer
Institute researchers Dr. Sweta Iyer, Dr. Ruth Kluck and colleagues have discovered a novel way of directly activating Bak to trigger cell death.

First discovery in United States of colistin resistance in a human E. coli infection
The Multidrug Resistant Organism Repository and Surveillance Network at the Walter Reed Army Institute of Research characterized a transferrable gene for colistin resistance in the United States that may herald the emergence of truly pan-drug resistant bacteria.

RDA Data Share program announces fellowship awards
RDA Data Share, an early career engagement program for the Research Data Alliance/US, is pleased to announce its selection of the 2016 cohort of Fellows.

Metagenomics pathogen detection tool could change how infectious diseases are diagnosed
Scientists at the University of Utah, ARUP Laboratories, and IDbyDNA, Inc., have developed ultra-fast, meta-genomics analysis software called Taxonomer that dramatically improves the accuracy and speed of pathogen detection.

John Innes scientists discover missing link in plant nitrogen fixation process
Scientists at the John Innes Centre have discovered an important component in the process of nitrogen fixation in plants.

USC Norris Comprehensive Cancer Center presents research at ASCO Annual Meeting
These are research and presentations from USC Norris Comprehensive Cancer Center at the 2016 American Society of Clinical Oncology Annual Meeting

Slime mold reveals clues to immune cells' directional abilities
How white blood cells in our immune systems home in on and engulf bacterial invaders -- like humans following the scent of oven-fresh pizza -- has long been a mystery to scientists.

Refusing access to surgery recovery area at a UK hospital unless WHO Safe Surgery Checklist is fully complete
New research showing that refusal to allow surgery teams to take the patient to the recovery room after surgery unless the full WHO Safe Surgery Checklist has been complete is a highly effective way to improve use of the checklist.

Force-feeling phone: Software lets mobile devices sense pressure
What if you could dial 911 by squeezing your smartphone in a certain pattern in your palm?

Using a model to estimate breast cancer risk in effort to improve prevention
A model developed to estimate the absolute risk of breast cancer suggests that a 30-year-old white woman in the United States has an 11.3 percent risk, on average, of developing invasive breast cancer by the age of 80, according to a new study published online by JAMA Oncology.

Malnutrition results from more than just inadequate diet
Malnourished children are most likely to die from common infections, not starvation alone, and immune disorder may be part of the cause, according to a review led by Queen Mary University of London.

BioDiscovery joins Pensoft's portfolio as the first biomedical journal for the publisher
Being the first open access peer-reviewed online journal published in Scotland, BioDiscovery covers a large scope of research fields, stretching from life sciences to medicine, and encompassing everything in between.

Bright lights, healthy choices
Dining in dimly lit restaurants has been linked to eating slowly and ultimately eating less than in brighter restaurants, but does lighting also impact how healthfully we order?

Harbour porpoises are skilled hunters and eat almost constantly
Harbour porpoises have sometimes been described as 'living in the fast lane.' Being smaller than other cetaceans and living in cold northern waters means that the porpoises require a lot of energy to survive, making them prone to starvation.

C3E Women in Clean Energy Symposium & Awards
Journalists are invited to attend the morning session and lunch keynote of the C3E Women in Clean Energy Symposium & Awards at Stanford University, on May 31, 8:30 a.m.-1:15 p.m.

A critical inheritance from dad ensures healthy embryos
An important feature for life is what embryos receive from mom and dad upon fertilization.

For millions on long-term opioid medications, change will be a challenge
A team of researchers at the University of Colorado School of Medicine and the VA Eastern Colorado Health Care System recently surveyed patients to understand barriers to reducing the use of opioids to manage chronic pain.

Underwater grass beds have ability to protect and maintain their own health
An expansive bed of underwater grass at the mouth of the Susquehanna River has proven it is able to 'take a licking and keep on ticking.' A recent study has found that the submersed aquatic vegetation bed at Susquehanna Flats, which only recently made a comeback in the Chesapeake Bay, was not only able to survive a barrage of rough storms and flooding, but it has proven a natural ability to protect and maintain itself.

Women may be able to reduce breast cancer risk predicted by their genes
Women with a high risk of developing breast cancer based on family history and genetic risk can still reduce the chance they will develop the disease in their lifetimes by following a healthy lifestyle, new research led by the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health suggests.

Doubling down on Schrödinger's cat
Yale physicists have given Schrödinger's famous cat a second box to play in, and the result may help further the quest for reliable quantum computing.

The Lancet Oncology: Teenagers and young adults still fare worse than children for many common cancers, according to Europe-wide study
More young people of all ages are surviving cancer than ever before, but new research published today in The Lancet Oncology journal shows that adolescents and young adults have a lower chance of surviving eight relatively common types of cancer than children, according to the latest data from a long-running study of cancer survival across Europe.

Alternative odor receptors discovered in mice
Smell in mammals turns out to be more complex than we thought.

Coping with active surveillance anxiety in prostate cancer
Men with prostate cancer who are under medical surveillance reported significantly greater resilience and less anxiety after receiving an intervention of mindfulness meditation, a study found.

Why malnutrition is an immune disorder
Malnourished children are most likely to die from common infections, not starvation.

Party on(line): The link between social media, alcohol use
One of the undeniable powers of social media is its ability to influence people and their behaviors.

Does AAV-based gene delivery cause liver cancer? The debate heats up
Liver cancer can be triggered by mutations in cancer driver genes resulting from the insertion of adeno-associated virus vectors used to deliver therapeutic genes, although this tumor-inducing role of AAV remains highly controversial.

Top-down design brings new DNA structures to life
In new research appearing in the advance online edition of the journal Science, Hao Yan, along with colleagues from MIT and Baylor College of Medicine describe a new method for designing geometric forms built from DNA.

Schrödinger's cat is alive and dead in 2 places at once
Through new experiments involving the famous Schrödinger cat state paradox, researchers have shown that a 'quantum cat' can be both alive and dead, and in two places at once.

Science commentary explores ways to pay for success in gene therapy
As gene therapy trials show promise to cure or ameliorate several diseases, it is time to explore ways to pay for the treatments, according to commentary in the journal Science.

NIH study visualizes proteins involved in cancer cell metabolism
Scientists using cryo-EM have broken through a technological barrier in visualizing proteins with an approach that may have an impact on drug discovery and development.

Publicly funded cancer researchers present trial results at ASCO 2016
Investigators from SWOG, the National Cancer Institute funded clinical trials group, will make 21 presentations in Chicago next week at the 2016 Annual Meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology, the world's leading professional organization for physicians who care for people with cancer.

Study identifies risk factors associated with eye abnormalities in infants with presumed Zika virus
In a study published online by JAMA Ophthalmology, Rubens Belfort Jr., M.D., Ph.D., of the Federal University of Sao Paulo and Vision Institute, Sao Paulo, Brazil, and colleagues assessed and identified possible risk factors for ophthalmoscopic (an instrument used to visualize the back of the eye) findings in infants born with microcephaly (a birth defect characterized by an abnormally small head) and a presumed clinical diagnosis of Zika virus intrauterine infection.

In brain-injured patients, a way to measure awareness or its impending return
The precise diagnosis and prognosis of recovery of consciousness of patients after a severe brain injury is a challenging clinical task, as some brain-injured patients retain certain levels of awareness despite appearing fully unresponsive.

The brain needs cleaning to stay healthy
Research led by the Achucarro Basque Center for Neuroscience, the University of the Basque Country (UPV/EHU), and the Ikerbasque Foundation has revealed the mechanisms that keep the brain clean during neurodegenerative diseases.

Leicester celebrates 50th anniversary of UK's first mass communication research center
The University of Leicester will also be hosting the international IAMCR conference in July which will be attended by more than 1,000 delegates.

A new treatment room design model for future hospitals
In the EVICURES project a design model for future intensive and intermediate care facilities was developed at Seinäjoki Central Hospital.

Study dispels myth about millionaire migration in the US
The view that the rich are highly mobile has gained much political traction in recent years and has become a central argument in debates about whether there should be 'millionaire taxes' on top-income earners.

Moving beyond race-based drugs
Prescribing certain medications on the basis of a patient's race has long come under fire from those uneasy with using race as a surrogate for biology when treating disease.

New 'genetic barcode' technique reveals details of cell lineage
By using the gene editing tool CRISPR to create unique genetic 'barcodes,' it's possible to track the lineage of cells in a living organism, a new study reveals.

Potential impact of a dengue vaccine in the Yucatan
While no dengue vaccine has yet been approved for general use, several candidates are in clinical development.

Researchers aiming at improved early diagnosis of arthrosis
Arthrosis, a degenerative disease that affects the joints, becomes more common as people become older.

Study: Unmet surgical needs high for world's 60 million refugees
New research from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health suggests that the world's estimated 60 million refugees, displaced from their homes due to conflict, persecution or human rights violations, may need at least 2.78 million surgeries a year, something thought to be very difficult to arrange in the midst of their upheaval.

Researchers show experience plays strong role in early stages of brain circuit development
A study from The Scripps Research Institute suggests external stimulation guides certain neurons' early development so that inhibitory neurons split into two different types of neurons, each with a different job, adding another level of complexity and regulation to the brain's circuitry.

NIST, partners create standard to improve sustainable manufacturing
A public-private team led by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) has created a new international standard that can 'map' the critically important environmental aspects of manufacturing processes, leading to significant improvements in sustainability while keeping a product's life cycle low cost and efficient.

Spring snow a no-go?
Spring snowpack, relied on by ski resorts and water managers throughout the Western United States, may be more vulnerable to a warming climate in coming decades, according to a new University of Utah study.

Weight gain in children associated with low hormone levels
A Mayo Clinic-led study found that obese teenagers have lower levels of a hormone potentially tied to weight management than teens of normal weights.

Cuing environmental responses in fungi
Sensory perception lies at the heart of adaptation to changing conditions, and helps fungi to improve growth and recycle organic waste, and to know when and how to infect a plant or animal host.

Mimicking deep sleep brain activity improves memory
It is not surprising that a good night's sleep improves our ability to remember what we learned during the day.

10th Annual Canadian Neuroscience Meeting, Toronto, May 29 to June 1 2016
The Canadian Association for Neuroscience is happy to announce it will hold its tenth annual meeting in Toronto, from May 29 to June 1 2016.

Azti wins key contract in ICCAT's Atlantic ocean tropical tuna tagging program
The overall aim of the AOTTP project is to tag more than 120,000 tuna in the Atlantic Ocean as part of what is poised to become the largest tuna tagging campaign carried out in these waters to date.

Finding a new formula for concrete
Researchers at MIT are seeking to redesign concrete -- the most widely used human-made material in the world -- by following nature's blueprints.

Selfie wall makes viewer part of photo or outdoor advert
A selfie wall implemented by VTT seamlessly merges the viewer with content shown on screen, for example a historic photo or an advert.

TSRI scientists discover mechanism that turns mutant cells into aggressive cancers
Scientists at The Scripps Research Institute have caught a cancer-causing mutation in the act.

Rotman professor wins early career award for operations management research
Ming Hu, an associate professor of operations management at the University of Toronto, has received a prestigious award which recognizes his research accomplishments from the Production and Operations Management Society.

Cells engineered from muscular dystrophy patients offer clues to variations in symptoms
Johns Hopkins researchers report they have inadvertently found a way to make human muscle cells bearing genetic mutations from people with Duchenne muscular dystrophy.

Neurosurgeon studying if deep brain stimulation can help with bipolar disorder
Jennifer Sweet, M.D., a neurosurgeon at University Hospitals Case Medical Center, recently opened a clinical research study to learn if there is a structural target in the brain for patients suffering from bipolar disorder and whether deep brain stimulation can bring them relief.

Investigational drugs show promise for treating overactive bladder
In a recent study of patients with overactive bladder (OAB), a 30 mg extended release formulation of propiverine hydrochloride was at least as effective and safe as a 4 mg extended release formulation of tolterodine tartrate.

Making or breaking habits: The endocannabinoids can do it
An article published May 26 in the scientific journal Neuron shows that shifting between habitual and goal-directed actions is all a matter of controlling the level of activity in a specific brain region called the orbitofrontal cortex.

May 31 set for NCI-MATCH precision medicine trial to resume gene testing of patients
Enrollment of patients in the National Cancer Institute-Molecular Analysis for Therapy Choice (NCI-MATCH) phase II precision medicine cancer trial will resume on Tuesday, May 31, 2016, at 12 p.m.

New study uncovers mechanisms underlying how diabetes damages the heart
Cardiac complications are the number one cause of death among diabetics.

Targeting metals to fight pathogenic bacteria
Researchers at the Laboratory for Molecular Infection Medicine Sweden at Umeå University in Sweden participated in the discovery of a unique system of acquisition of essential metals in the pathogenic bacterium Staphylococcus aureus.

Gut bacteria may contribute to poor health in patients with kidney disease
In patients with chronic kidney disease, the accumulation of a gut bacterial metabolite that's normally excreted in urine may contribute to serious health problems.

Introduction of building-specific heat distribution centers
VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland Ltd and Nuorkivi Consulting analyzed the suitability of Finnish heat distribution centers for Chinese conditions.

Exeter researchers to lead two major projects on past and future climate change
Scientists at the University of Exeter will be leading two major multi-million pound world-class research projects after winning funding to investigate climate change.

Astronomers find giant planet around very young star
In contradiction to the long-standing idea that larger planets take longer to form, US astronomers today announced the discovery of a giant planet in close orbit around a star so young that it still retains a disk of circumstellar gas and dust.

Engineers discover a new gatekeeper for light
Imagine a device that is selectively transparent to various wavelengths of light at one moment, and opaque to them the next, following a minute adjustment.

New meta-analysis shows ketamine effective against persistent post-surgical pain and could provide major cost-savings globally
A new meta-analysis showing the effectiveness of ketamine for dealing with persistent post-surgical pain (PPSP) is to be presented at Euroanaesthesia 2016.

Mothers' parenting stress impacts both parents' sexual satisfaction
First-time parents are only somewhat satisfied with their sex lives according to Penn State health researchers who checked in with parents regularly after their baby was born.

Investment in energy storage vital if renewables to achieve full potential
Government subsidies should be used to encourage investment in energy storage systems if renewable power is to be fully integrated into the sector, according to researchers at the University of East Anglia.

New technique captures the activity of an entire brain in a snapshot
With a new imaging tool, scientists are able to measure the activity of all the neurons in a mouse brain with unmatched precision.

Can we extend healthspan by altering the perception of food?
Researchers have shown a new effect on aging via a small drug-like molecule that alters the perception of food in C. elegans.

ACP, other medical groups urge Congress to prevent Zika public health emergency
The American College of Physicians along with the American Academy of Family Physicians, the American Academy of Pediatrics and the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists sent a letter today to House and Senate leaders urging them to immediately pass legislation that would provide the highest possible funding level for research, prevention, control, and treatment of illnesses associated with the Zika virus that is commensurate with the public health emergency that the virus represents.

Mars is emerging from an ice age
Radar measurements of Mars' polar ice caps reveal that the mostly dry, dusty planet is emerging from an ice age, following multiple rounds of climate change.

An international team led by the CNIO receives a grant to study metastatic melanoma
A global, multi-institutional research team consisting of the Spanish National Cancer Research Centre, The Wistar Institute, Cancer Research UK Edinburgh Centre (University of Edinburgh), the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania and the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai has been awarded the L'Oréal Paris USA-MRA Team Science Award for Women in Scientific Research bestowed by the Melanoma Research Alliance to study metastatic melanoma.

New 3-D hydrogel biochips prove to be superior in detecting bowel cancer at early stages
Researchers from a number of Russian research centers have developed a new method of diagnosing colorectal cancer.

How a huge landslide shaped Zion National Park
A Utah mountainside collapsed 4,800 years ago in a gargantuan landslide known as a 'rock avalanche,' creating the flat floor of what is now Zion National Park by damming the Virgin River to create a lake that existed for 700 years.

NewYork-Presbyterian, Columbia University Medical Center and Weill Cornell Medicine oncologists present at ASCO
Oncologists from NewYork-Presbyterian, Columbia University Medical Center and Weill Cornell Medicine will discuss their latest research findings at the American Society for Clinical Oncology (ASCO) annual meeting, June 3-7 in Chicago.

Researchers identify critical factors that determine drought vulnerability of wheat, maize
Researchers led by Lixin Wang, assistant professor of earth sciences in the School of Science at Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis, have identified critical information about the environmental variables and agronomic factors that determine the vulnerability of maize and wheat production to drought.

A planet 1,200 light-years away is a good prospect for a habitable world
A distant 'super-Earth' size planet known as Kepler-62f could be habitable, a team of astronomers reports.

Powering up the circadian rhythm
Salk team first to discover protein that controls the strength of body's circadian rhythms.

UT Southwestern researchers determine 3-D atomic structure of cholesterol transporter
Using X-ray crystallography, UT Southwestern Medical Center researchers have determined the 3-D atomic structure of a human sterol transporter that helps maintain cholesterol balance.

Why is there no Labor Party in the United States?
The improbable rise of Bernie Sanders' presidential campaign presents an interesting question: why is Sanders, a self-proclaimed 'democratic socialist,' running as a Democrat?

UCSB receives Grand Challenges Explorations grant
Microbial geneticist David Low will lead a project conducting groundbreaking research in global health and development.

NASA releases 'Metabolomics: You Are What You Eat' video
NASA's Human Research Program is releasing 'Metabolomics: You Are What You Eat' video to highlight its Twins Study which uses omics to study Mark and Scott Kelly's metabolites.

New malaria drugs kill by promoting premature parasite division
Several new malaria drugs under development share a common feature: they promote an influx of sodium ions into Plasmodium parasites that have invaded red blood cells and multiply there.

Surrogate endpoints poor proxy for survival in cancer drug approval process
Surrogate endpoints used to support the majority of new cancer drugs approved in the US often lack formal study, according to the authors of a study published in the June issue of Mayo Clinic Proceedings.

UH researcher recognized for work in clean energy
Debora Rodrigues, associate professor of civil and environmental engineering at the University of Houston, has received the 2016 C3E Research Award.

Small offshore oil spills put seabirds at risk: Industry self-monitoring failing
Seabirds exposed to even a dime-sized amount of oil can die of hypothermia in cold-water regions, but despite repeated requests by Environment Canada, offshore oil operators are failing when it comes to self-monitoring of small oil spills, says new research out of York University.

PETA science group publishes a review on pulmonary effects of nanomaterials
A scientist from the PETA International Science Consortium Ltd. is the lead author of a review on pulmonary fibrosis that results from inhaling nanomaterials, which has been published in Archives of Toxicology.

Free e-book to support anti-smoking fight released by Georgia State
A free electronic book to assist researchers, practitioners, advocates, students and others interested in working to end smoking, one of the leading causes of death and disease globally, has been released by the School of Public Health at Georgia State University.

UPMC researchers shine light on common heart complication after lung transplantation
Cardiac arrhythmia is a common complication following lung transplantation, and one that has a significant negative impact on long-term patient survival.

Migration back to Africa took place during the Paleolithic
The UPV/EHU's Human Evolutionary Biology group has managed to retrieve the mitochondrial genome of a fossil 35,000 years old found in the Pestera Muierii cave in Romania.

Genes that increase children's risk of blood infection identified
A team led by Oxford University has identified genes that make certain children more susceptible to invasive bacterial infections by performing a large genome-wide association study in African children.

Study explores why there is no Labor Party in the United States
The improbable rise of Bernie Sanders' presidential campaign presents an interesting question: why is Sanders, a self-proclaimed 'democratic socialist,' running as a Democrat? 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