Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

December 22, 2016
Gene activity predicts progression of autoimmune disease, Stanford researchers find
Researchers at the Stanford University School of Medicine and six other institutions have designed a new diagnostic tool for a rare and deadly autoimmune disease that affects the skin and internal organs.

Advance in intense pulsed light sintering opens door to improved electronics manufacturing
Faster production of advanced, flexible electronics is among the potential benefits of a discovery in the area of photonic sintering of silver nanoparticle films.

Direct-to-brain chemo better than systemic drugs when immunotherapy is to follow
In experiments on mice with a form of aggressive brain cancer, Johns Hopkins researchers have shown that localized chemotherapy delivered directly to the brain rather than given systemically may be the best way to keep the immune system intact and strong when immunotherapy is also part of the treatment.

Northeastern and Facebook partner on next generation research projects
Face­book announced on Wednesday that North­eastern is one of 17 research uni­ver­si­ties selected to partner with the com­pany on next gen­er­a­tion, joint tech­nology projects.

Hidden hearing loss revealed by UConn School of Medicine researchers
Two researchers at UConn School of Medicine have developed a new hearing test that can identify hearing loss or deficits in some individuals considered to have normal or near-normal hearing in traditional tests.

NASA spots Tropical Storm Nock-ten intensify
NASA's Aqua satellite flew over the Northwestern Pacific Ocean and captured a visible image of Tropical Storm Nock-ten after it strengthened from a tropical depression.

Sensor sensation
OIST researchers create a novel sensor capable of measuring both charge and mass of biomolecules with potential applications in healthcare diagnostics.

Results of major myeloma treatment trial published in The Lancet
The addition of bortezomib to a standard two-drug regimen for multiple myeloma patients significantly lengthened the time before their cancer returned, and significantly lengthened their lives, according to clinical trial results in The Lancet.

Genetic cause identified for previously unrecognized developmental disorder
An international team of scientists has identified variants of the gene EBF3 causing a developmental disorder with features in common with autism.

TSRI study: Protein monitors lung volume and regulates breathing
The researchers said this study might help shed light on sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) in human babies, which is thought to be associated with dysfunctional airway sensory neurons.

More than 50 percent of women are avoiding pregnancy due to Zika in Brazil
Over half the women in Brazil are avoiding pregnancy due to the Zika epidemic, reveals a study published online in the Journal of Family Planning and Reproductive Health Care.

Scientists discover concussion biomarker
Scientists at Northwestern University have discovered a biological marker that may help diagnose and monitor concussions.

NIH-supported scientists accelerate immune response to tuberculosis in mice
New research findings provide insight into the immune system pathways that may be key to developing an effective tuberculosis (TB) vaccine.

Occupational therapy may have the potential to slow down functional decline and reduce behavioral troubles
A French observational study in real life showed that dementia patients benefiting from occupational therapy sessions report relevant clinical benefits over the intervention period, according to a research study published in the Journal of Alzheimer's Disease this month.

Using super-slow motion movie, scientists pin down the workings of a key proton pump
Using powerful new tools, scientists from the RIKEN SPring-8 Center and collaborators have demonstrated how bacteriorhodopsin, a 'proton pump,' uses light to transport protons across the cell membrane to create a charge difference that can be used to power a cell's activities.

These dinosaurs lost their teeth as they grew up
By comparing the fossilized remains of 13 ceratosaurian theropod dinosaurs known as Limusaurus inextricabilis collected from the Upper Jurassic Shishugou Formation of northwestern China, researchers have been able to reconstruct the dinosaur's growth and development from a young hatchling of less than a year to the age of 10.

Losing sleep over discrimination? 'Everyday discrimination' may contribute to sleep problems
People who perceive more discrimination in daily life have higher rates of sleep problems, based on both subjective and objective measures, reports a study in Psychosomatic Medicine: Journal of Biobehavioral Medicine, the official journal of the American Psychosomatic Society.

Heart-related deaths spike at Christmas
Heart-related deaths spike around Christmas, and the effect may not be because of the cold winter season.

NASA finds heavy rainfall area increasing in Tropical Cyclone Yvette
NASA found that the area of heavy rainfall had increased in size as Tropical Cyclone Yvette continued to intensify in the Southern Indian Ocean.

Hubble chases a small stellar galaxy in the Hunting Dog
Lurking in the constellation of Canes Venatici or The Hunting Dog, NGC 4707 lies roughly 22 million light-years from Earth.

The sound of quantum vacuum
Quantum mechanics dictates sensitivity limits in the measurements of displacement, velocity and acceleration.

Histologic classification impacts SBRT treatment in early-stage lung cancer patients
Early-stage non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) patients with squamous cell carcinoma (SqCC) have a significantly higher rate of local failure after stereotactic body radiation therapy (SBRT) than other NSCLC histological subtypes.

NJIT's Sirkar named a 2016 Fellow of the National Academy of Inventors
NJIT's Kamalesh Sirkar, a distinguished professor of chemical engineering acclaimed for his innovations in industrial membrane technology used to separate and purify air, water and waste streams and to improve the quality of manufactured products such as pharmaceuticals, solvents and nanoparticles, has been named a 2016 Fellow of the National Academy of Inventors.

Abortion care in the UK is 'heading towards a crisis,' warns expert
Abortion care in the UK is 'heading towards a crisis' and reform of the law is just one of the many obstacles that needs to be overcome, argues an expert in the Journal of Family Planning and Reproductive Health Care.

Moffitt researchers use mathematics to explain treatment resistance
A collaborative team of researchers from Moffitt Cancer Center's Integrated Mathematical Oncology (IMO) Program, led by Alexander Anderson, Ph.D., and Oxford University's Department of Computer Science are using mathematical models to explain how bacteria and cancer cells exploit an evolutionary process known as bet-hedging to resist medical intervention.

Artificial intelligence to generate new cancer drugs on demand
Clinical trial failure rates for small molecules in oncology exceed 94% for molecules previously tested in animals and the costs to bring a new drug to market exceed $2.5 billion.

Global climate target could net additional six million tons of fish annually
If countries abide by the Paris Agreement global warming target of 1.5 degrees Celsius, potential fish catches could increase by six million metric tons per year, according to a new study published in Science.

Wayne State University leads groundbreaking research on preterm birth
Preterm birth -- birth before 37 weeks of pregnancy -- affects up to one in every six births in the United States and many other countries.

LifePoint health furthers commitment to chest pain care
Thirty-five LifePoint Health® facilities earned Chest Pain Center Accreditation in 2016, bringing the total number of accredited facilities to 63, as part of a system-wide collaboration between LifePoint Health® (NASDAQ: LPNT) and the American College of Cardiology.

New tag revolutionizes whale research -- and makes them partners in science
A sophisticated new type of 'tag' on whales that can record data every second for hours, days and weeks at a time provides a view of whale behavior, biology and travels never before possible, scientists reported today in a new study.

Genes controlling sugar and acid content played key role in jujube domestication
Genes involved in creating sweet jujube fruits with the right amount of tartness played an important role in the domestication of this popular Asian fruit, according to genomic analyses by Jian Huang and Xingang Li of Northwest A&F University in Yangling, China, and colleagues, in a study published Dec.

Analysis of 50,000+ genomes reveals detrimental mutations
Two new studies highlight the findings of an extensive analysis of exomes, coupled with electronic health records (EHR), which has led to the identification of a number of medically relevant genetic variants in humans.

Penn expert : Human genome sequences linked to health data will change clinical medicine
The value of intersecting the sequencing of individuals' exomes or full genomes to find rare genetic variants -- on a large scale -- with their detailed electronic health record (EHR) information has 'myriad benefits, including the illumination of basic human biology, the early identification of preventable and treatable illnesses, and the identification and validation of new therapeutic targets,' wrote Daniel J.

Existence of a short-lived tetraneutron predicted
A member of the Lomonosov Moscow State University together with his colleagues, using new interaction between neutrons, have theoretically justified the low-energy tertaneutron resonance obtained recently experimentally.

Some glioblastoma patients benefit from 'ineffective' treatment, Stanford researchers say
A subgroup of patients with a devastating brain tumor called glioblastoma multiforme benefited from treatment with a class of chemotherapy drugs that two previous large clinical trials indicated was ineffective against the disease, according to a study at the Stanford University School of Medicine.

Deadly sleeping sickness set to be eliminated in 6 years
Gambian sleeping sickness -- a deadly parasitic disease spread by tsetse flies -- could be eliminated in six years in key regions in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), according to new research by the University of Warwick.

No teeth? No problem -- dinosaur species had teeth as babies, lost them as they grew
Researchers have discovered that a species of dinosaur, Limusaurus inextricabilis, lost its teeth in adolescence and did not grow another set as adults.

Fractional disturbance observers could help machines stay on track
Using fractional calculus, the team of researchers created a suite of observers that could accurately estimate disturbances of varying complexity.

Specific Technologies and FIND announce strategic collaboration
Specific Technologies and FIND today announced a collaboration to promote the development of new solutions for diagnosis of bloodstream infections in resource-poor environments.

Paris Agreement target critical for preserving fisheries
Limiting temperature increases to 1.5°C over pre-industrial levels, as outlined in the Paris Agreement, will significantly minimize the impact of global warming on the catch potential of marine ecosystems and limit the turnover of harvested species, a new study reports.

A smarter, safer way to reduce corrosion
Better protection against rust and corrosion is a step closer thanks to a breakthrough by a Swansea University research team, who have discovered a safer, smarter way of tackling the problem.

Protein that activates immune response harms body's ability to fight HIV
Findings from a study in animals appear to demonstrate that temporarily blocking a type of protein, called type I interferon, can restore immune function and speed up viral suppression during treatment with anti-viral drugs for people with chronic infection of the virus that causes AIDS.

Evolution of ideas: Scientists to decode genetic story of Newton's apple
Scientists will connect two of the most important scientific theories of all time -- the law of universal gravitation and the theory of evolution -- by unraveling the genetic code of the apple which inspired Isaac Newton's greatest discovery 350 years ago this year.

Temperature drives biodiversity
Why is the diversity of animals and plants so unevenly distributed on our planet?

Enhanced energy: ONR global seeks more powerful electronic devices
Groundbreaking energy research from the United Arab Emirates, sponsored by the Office of Naval Research Global (ONRG), is the focus of an article published this week in the acclaimed Nature Magazine journal

Weight loss reduces psoriasis symptoms
Weight loss has a significant and prolonged positive impact on psoriasis symptoms and quality of life.

FH and other findings from Geisinger-Regeneron genomics studies
A study conducted by Geisinger Health System in collaboration with the Regeneron Genetics Center has found that a life-threatening genetic disorder known as familial hypercholesterolemia (FH) is both underdiagnosed and undertreated.

An astounding number of insects migrate overhead
A decade of monitoring aerial insect migration reveals that trillions of individuals travel above us each year.

Feeding the supermassive black hole at the center of the Milky Way
Feature describes method for modeling accretion disk that feeds supermassive Sagittarius A.

UTSW identify process cells use to destroy damaged organelles, with links to diseases
Researchers at UT Southwestern Medical Center have uncovered the mechanism that cells use to find and destroy an organelle called mitochondria that, when damaged, may lead to genetic problems, cancer, neurodegenerative diseases, inflammatory disease, and aging.

The Lancet: Final trial results confirm Ebola vaccine provides high protection against disease
An experimental Ebola vaccine was highly protective against the deadly virus in a major trial in Guinea, according to results published today in The Lancet.

Controlling the body clock
A new study from the laboratory of Hiroki Ueda at the RIKEN Quantitative Biology Center investigates circadian timekeeping with a novel approach to creating genetic knock-out rescue mice.

Genes Nardilysin and OGDHL linked to human neurological conditions
An international team of scientists has discovered that the gene, OGDHL, a key protein required for normal function of the mitochondria -- the energy-producing factory of the cell -- and its chaperone, nardilysin (NRD1) are linked to progressive loss of neurological function in humans.

Overweight affects DNA methylation
The extra pounds you gain during the holidays will not only show up on your hips but will also affect your DNA.

Gene test could pinpoint patients sensitive to new type of cancer drug
Testing for a gene commonly mutated in ovarian cancers could pick out patients who will respond well to a promising new class of cancer drugs, a major new study reveals.

Oregon researchers publish reference genome of gulf pipefish
University of Oregon biologists have produced a detailed genome of the snakelike gulf pipefish, delivering a new research reference tool to help explore an ancient fish family that includes seahorses and sea dragons and has generated bodies with vastly different features over time through genetic changes.

Proteins at the movies
In research conducted at SACLA, Japan's XFEL (X-ray free electron laser) facility, membrane protein folding has been captured for the first time in 3-D and at a single-atom level.

Obesity-associated protein could be linked to leukemia development
Cancer researchers at the University of Cincinnati College of Medicine have found an obesity-associated protein's role in leukemia development and drug response which could lead to more effective therapies for the illness.

Christmas holidays linked to rise in heart attacks in northern and southern hemispheres
University of Melbourne researchers have found an increase in heart attacks around the festive period may be due to more difficult access to hospitals, combined with stress, an excess of alcohol and a fatty diet.

Electron-photon small-talk could have big impact on quantum computing
In a step that brings silicon-based quantum computers closer to reality, researchers at Princeton University have built a device in which a single electron can pass its quantum information to a particle of light.

Smoking while pregnant may compromise children's kidney function
Compared with those born from nonsmoking mothers, young children whose mothers smoked while pregnant were 1.24 times more likely to show signs of kidney damage.

Plastics compound bps alters mouse moms' behavior and brain regions
In the first study of its kind, environmental health scientist Laura Vandenberg and neuroscientist Mary Catanese at the University of Massachusetts Amherst examined the effects of the compound bisphenol S (BPS) on maternal behavior and related brain regions in mice.

What makes a skin cell destined to be hairy or sweaty
Researchers have identified the signals and exact timing during embryonic development that dictate the fate of skin cells to be sweaty or hairy.

Biologists use fossils to pinpoint when mammal and dinosaur ancestors became athletes
Biologists have established a 'fossilizable' indicator of athleticism in the bones of extinct vertebrates.

Researchers capture video of false killer whale's encounter with longline
A team of researchers and fishermen, coordinated by Scripps Institution of Oceanography at the University of California San Diego scientist Aaron Thode, used video and audio recordings to observe false killer whales removing fish from a longline fishing hook, a behavior known as depredation.

Jujube genome study sheds light on fruit tree's domestication
Researchers at BTI and the Northwest A&F University have sequenced the genome of the dry jujube.

Mass insect migrations in UK skies
For the first time, scientists have measured the movements of high-flying insects in the skies over southern England -- and found that about 3.5 trillion migrate over the region every year.

Oddly shaped immune cells cause fibrosis
Scientists at the Immunology Frontier Research Center (IFReC) at Osaka University, Japan, report a new group of monocytes they call SatM.

Post-Op complications measurements differ, Mayo Clinic study finds
How do medical professionals determine whether or not a patient has experienced a post-operative complication?

Promising discovery for a non-invasive early detection of Alzheimer's disease
A discovery of high relevance in medical research will be published in Volume 55, number 4 of December 2016 of the prestigious 'Journal of Alzheimer's Disease (JAD),' entitled 'Tau Platelets Correlate with Regional Brain Atrophy in Patients with Alzheimer's Disease.'

Training to become a scuba diver? Start at the dentist
A new University at Buffalo pilot study found that 41 percent of scuba divers experienced dental symptoms in the water.

Nanoscale 'conversations' create complex, multi-layered structures
Scientists have developed a way to efficiently create scalable, multilayer, multi-patterned nanoscale structures with unprecedented complexity.

New precision medicine tool helps optimize cancer treatment
Columbia University researchers have created a user-friendly computational tool that rapidly predicts which genes are implicated in an individual's cancer and recommends treatments.

Fractional calculus helps control systems hit their mark
Compared with classical (or integer-order) calculus, which forms the mathematical basis of most control systems, fractional calculus is better equipped to handle the time-dependent effects observed in real-world processes.

Firefly gift-giving: Composition of 'nuptial gifts' revealed, shedding light on postmating sexual selection
New research at Tufts University, in collaboration with MIT scientists, reveals the molecular composition of firefly 'nuptial gifts,' offering the first peek into the content of these special packages and shedding new light on post-mating sexual selection.

Helping pays off: People who care for others live longer
Older people who help and support others live longer. These are the findings of a study published in the journal 'Evolution and Human Behavior,' conducted by researchers from the University of Basel, Edith Cowan University, the University of Western Australia, the Humboldt University of Berlin, and the Max Planck Institute for Human Development in Berlin.

Here's why you don't feel jet-lagged when you run a fever
A clump of just a few thousand brain cells, no bigger than a mustard seed, controls the daily ebb and flow of most bodily processes in mammals -- sleep/wake cycles, most notably.

Do you burn more fat in the cold? (video)
With the holidays in full swing, all of those feasts and festivities can lead to a few extra pounds.

With $8.6 million grant from NIH, UCLA-led consortium will map the heart's nervous system
A consortium directed by UCLA's Dr. Kalyanam Shivkumar has received a three-year, $8.6 million grant from the National Institutes of Health to map the heart's nervous system.

Interleukin-1α causes people to choke on air
Scientists at the Immunology Frontier Research Center (IFReC) at Osaka University, Japan have pinpointed a specific molecular events that could explain allergic reactions to air pollution.

Study potentially explains vulnerability of young cancer patients to treatment toxicities
Scientists at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute say they have discovered a potential explanation for why brain and heart tissues in very young children are more sensitive to collateral damage from cancer treatment than older individuals.

Researchers estimate time since death using necrobiome
Researchers Estimate Time Since Death Using Necrobiome.

Know thy enemy: Kill MRSA with tailored chemistry
UConn medicinal chemists have developed experimental antibiotics that kill MRSA, a common and often deadly bacteria that causes skin, lung, and heart infections.

History of kidney injury increases risk of pregnancy complications
A study by Massachusetts General Hospital investigators finds, for the first time, that women with a history of acute kidney injury with complete clinical recovery have an increase of several adverse outcomes of pregnancy even though they appear to have normal kidney function prior to pregnancy.

Future 'smart cities' should be super-connected, green and resilient
When Superstorm Sandy lashed New Jersey in 2012, Narayan B.

PharmaMar and Chugai enter into a license and commercialization agreement for PM1183
PharmaMar (MSE:PHM) has announced today the signing of an exclusive license, development and commercialization agreement with Chugai Pharmaceutical Co.

Prior kidney damage may pose risks for pregnant women and their babies
Women with a history of recovered acute kidney injury had an increased rate of preeclampsia and delivered infants earlier than women with a history of normal kidney function.

The hidden inferno inside your laser pointer
Two UA physicists have discovered that basic concepts such as 'hot' or 'cold' apply to any system, even those far from equilibrium.

Mouse models indicate burning more fat and less glucose could lead to diabetes
Making muscles burn more fat and less glucose can increase exercise endurance, but could simultaneously cause diabetes, says a team of scientists from Baylor College of Medicine and other institutions.

A stem cell strategy for boosting testosterone levels tested in rodents
Male hypogonadism is a condition that diminishes testosterone levels in approximately 30% of older men, but currently available therapies can produce serious side effects.

Study IDs key indicators linking violence and mental illness
New research finds a host of factors that are associated with subsequent risk of adults with mental illness becoming victims or perpetrators of violence.

1.5°C Paris Agreement target could net six million tons of fish annually
Meeting the Paris Agreement global warming target of 1.5°C will have large benefits to fisheries, finds a new Nippon Foundation-Nereus Program study published in Science. 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