Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

January 05, 2017
NASA moon data provides more accurate 2017 eclipse path
Thanks to elevation data of the moon from NASA's Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter, or LRO, coupled with detailed NASA topography data of Earth, we have the most accurate maps of the path of totality for any eclipse to date.

Artificial intelligence seen as a key technology to enable better balancing of UK's energy market
Upside Energy and Heriot-Watt University have been awarded a Knowledge Transfer Partnership grant by Innovate UK to maximize the opportunities presented by the emerging energy demand response market.

Structure of kidney failure patients' blood clots may increase their risk of early death
Hemodialysis patients tend to have denser blood clots than individuals without kidney disease.

Hot weather not to blame for Salmonella on egg farms
New research conducted by the University of Adelaide shows there is no greater risk of Salmonella contamination in the production of free range eggs in Australia due to hot summer weather, compared with other seasons.

Medical screening and fly control could rapidly reduce sleeping sickness in key locations
In 2012, the World Health Organization set public health goals for reducing Gambian sleeping sickness, a parasitic infection.

Research sheds new light on high-altitude settlement in Tibet
Early Tibetan Plateau settlers managed to survive at high elevation at least 7,400 years ago, before the development of an agricultural economy between 5,200-3,600 years ago.

New microscope chemically identifies micron-sized particles
A team from MIT Lincoln Labs have developed a microscope that can chemically identify individual micron-sized particles.

Long-distance survival: Effects of storage time and environmental exposure on soil bugs
Are soil organisms still risky after a year in the sun?

Researcher turns 'SARS mask' into a virus killer
The surgical masks people wear to stop the spread of diseases don't work well -- that isn't what they're designed for.

Buzzing the vagus nerve just right to fight inflammatory disease
Electrical vagus nerve stimulation can help fight inflammatory diseases like Crohn's or arthritis but can also contribute somewhat to inflammation.

New apps designed to reduce depression and anxiety as easily as checking your phone
Now you can find help for depression and anxiety on your smartphone as quickly as finding a good sushi restaurant.

New report calls for use of emerging scientific data to better assess public health risks
Recent scientific and technological advances have the potential to improve assessment of public health risks posed by chemicals, yet questions remain how best to integrate the findings from the new tools and methods into risk assessment.

Scientists use light to control the logic networks of a cell
Proteins are the workhorse molecules of life. Among their many jobs, they carry oxygen, build tissue, copy DNA for the next generation, and coordinate events within and between cells.

Oxford University Press to launch new journal, Innovation in Aging
Oxford University Press is pleased to announce its partnership with the Gerontological Society of America to publish Innovation in Aging, a new peer-reviewed, open access interdisciplinary journal, beginning in January 2017.

Scaling up marine conservation targets should benefit millions of people
About 200 countries worldwide committed to protecting 10 percent of national marine areas by signing the Convention on Biological Diversity.

Anemia protects African children against malaria
Researchers have found iron deficiency anemia protects children against the blood-stage of Plasmodium falciparum malaria in Africa, and treating anemia with iron supplementation removes this protective effect.

Consumption of grilled meat linked to higher mortality risk among breast cancer survivors
Findings published in JNCI: Journal of the National Cancer Institute indicate that higher consumption of grilled, barbecued, and smoked meat may increase the mortality risk among breast cancer survivors.

Mathematical papers and service honored at Joint Mathematics Meetings
Prizes for meritorious service and exemplary writing were awarded to Martha J.

Animal study shows harmful effects of secondhand smoke even before pregnancy
Exposure to second-hand tobacco smoke -- even before conception -- appears to have a lingering impact that can later impair the brain development of a fetus, researchers at Duke Health report.

Many kidney failure patients lack advance directives near the end of life
Among nursing home residents in the last year of life, patients with kidney failure were far less likely to have advance directives that put limitations on treatments and designated surrogate decision makers compared with other nursing home residents with serious illnesses.

Captured on video: DNA nanotubes build a bridge between 2 molecular posts
Researchers have coaxed DNA nanotubes to assemble themselves into bridge-like structures arched between two molecular landmarks on the surface of a lab dish.

Evaluating tissue response to biomaterials with a new bone-implant interaction model
To understand the molecular mechanisms involved in the interaction of bone with orthopedic implants comprised of novel biomaterials, researchers have made a mouse model in which they can assess early tissue responses to surfaces such as bioactive glass.

Density functional theory took a wrong turn recently
A new study by scientists from A.N. Nesmeyanov Institute of Organoelement Compounds, Moscow, Russia, and Temple University, Philadelphia, Pa., USA shows that the density functional theory, the bread and butter of modern computational chemistry, has significantly deviated in the recent years from the theoretical foundations it was built upon.

Acid suppression medications linked to serious gastrointestinal infections
In a population-based study from Scotland, use of commonly-prescribed acid suppression medications such as proton pump inhibitors (PPIs) was linked with an increased risk of intestinal infections with C. difficile and Campylobacter bacteria, which can cause considerable illness.

Two HKU architects receive RIBA Award
Joshua Bolchover and John Lin, Associate Professors in the Faculty of Architecture at the University of Hong Kong, earlier received the prestigious Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) Award for International Excellence as well as the RIBA International Emerging Architect for their ambitious plan for Andong Hospital in Hunan's Baojing County in mainland China.

Potential evidence of lung-specific Ebola infection found in recovering patient
Scientists have found potential evidence of Ebola virus replication in the lungs of a person recovering from infection, according to new research published in PLOS Pathogens.

Great Barrier Reef almost drowned; climate implications
The first comprehensive analysis of the Great Barrier Reef at a time of rapid sea-level rise during the beginning of the Last Interglacial found it almost died.

Ignition interlock laws reduce alcohol-involved fatal crashes
State laws requiring ignition interlocks for all drunk driving offenders appear to reduce the number of fatal drunk driving crashes, a new study by Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and Colorado School of Public Health researchers suggests.

Worms have teenage ambivalence, too
Salk scientists find that neurological changes mark transition from ambivalent adolescent to capable adult in the roundworm.

GSA's new Innovation in Aging journal will explore frontiers of gerontology
The Gerontological Society of America -- the nation's largest interdisciplinary organization devoted to the field of aging -- has launched Innovation in Aging, a new peer-reviewed, interdisciplinary journal.

Climate change has mixed effects on migratory geese
Climate change improves the breeding chances of migratory geese in the Arctic -- but puts mother geese at more risk of death, according to a new study.

Leaders and managers should be taught how to 'love' their staff
Chartered Psychologist (Occupational) Dr. Fiona Beddoes-Jones, in a study of over 300 managers/leaders, found the majority of respondents were dissatisfied with the level of warmth and care displayed at work and believed that their wellbeing would be improved if there was more 'love.'

Vision symptoms following concussion limit a child's ability to return to the classroom
A UAB study shows that evaluation from a vision specialist should be included in return-to-learn concussion protocols.

High-tech mooring will measure beneath Antarctic ice
Professor Elizabeth Shadwick of William & Mary's Virginia Institute of Marine Science has deployed a high-tech mooring beneath the seasonally ice-covered waters around Antarctica to better understand ocean acidification in polar regions.

Cancers evade immunotherapy by 'discarding the evidence' of tumor-specific mutations
Results of an initial study of tumors from patients with lung cancer or head and neck cancer suggest that the widespread acquired resistance to immunotherapy drugs known as checkpoint inhibitors may be due to the elimination of certain genetic mutations needed to enable the immune system to recognize and attack malignant cells.

Pollutants in the Arctic environment are threatening polar bear health
A new analysis has found that although the risk of persistent organic pollutants (POPs) in the Arctic environment is low for seals, it is two orders of magnitude higher than the safety threshold for adult polar bears and even more (three orders of magnitude above the threshold) for bear cubs fed with contaminated milk.

First complete interactome map of human receptor tyrosine kinases and phosphatases
Researchers have mapped interactions among all human membrane RTKs and PTPs, providing clues how these proteins work in normal cells and how they can go wrong in cancer.

New guidelines show how to introduce peanut-containing foods to reduce allergy risk
The wait is over for parents who've been wanting to know how and when to introduce peanut-containing foods to their infants to prevent peanut allergy.

Chemotherapy effectiveness and initiation time after lung cancer surgery
A new study suggests patients who recover slowly from non-small-cell lung cancer surgery may still benefit from delayed chemotherapy started up to four months after surgery, according to a new study published online by JAMA Oncology.

La Roche-Posay and GW publish study on sun protection behavior and skin cancer awareness
A large international survey, published in the Journal of the European Academy of Dermatology & Venereology by researchers from La Roche-Posay and the George Washington University, asked nearly 20,000 participants about their sun protection behavior and skin cancer awareness.

ASU to lead NASA space exploration mission for first time
NASA has approved an ASU mission to a metal asteroid called Psyche, marking the first time scientists will be able to see and explore a planetary core firsthand.

Vaginal microbes point toward early detection and screening for endometrial cancer
Endometrial cancer triggers remain elusive, despite continued research. But given the typical inflammatory profile in these cases, microbes in the uterine environment are suspected to play a role in the development of this disease.

Humans occupied Tibetan Plateau thousands of years earlier than previously thought
A new analysis of an archeological site in the high mountains of Tibet suggests that permanent residents may have set up camp thousands of years sooner than previously thought.

Accelerated discovery a triple threat to triple negative breast cancer
Discovered a gene mutation driving formation of most aggressive triple negative breast cancer.

New model shows companies how to tailor call center service to different customer types
Call centers can be expensive as well as the source of lots of consumer angst.

Apligraf® demonstrates significant change in chronic wound's genomic profile
Apligraf® -- an FDA-approved, bioengineered living-cell therapy from Organogenesis Inc.

Humans occupied tibetan plateau thousands of years earlier than previously thought
A new analysis of an archeological site in the high mountains of Tibet suggests that permanent residents may have set up camp thousands of years sooner than previously thought.

Harmonization needed!
Since the first reports on a dramatic increase in microplastic contamination in the sea twenty years ago, research efforts have intensified worldwide.

High monthly vitamin D reduces respiratory infections, may increase falls for older adults
Researchers concluded that a monthly high dose of vitamin D reduced the number of respiratory infections in older adults but increased the number of falls they experienced.

NIH-sponsored expert panel issues clinical guidelines to prevent peanut allergy
An expert panel sponsored by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), part of the National Institutes of Health, issued clinical guidelines to aid health care providers in early introduction of peanut-containing foods to infants to prevent the development of peanut allergy.

US educators awarded for exemplary teaching in mathematics
Janet Heine Barnett, Caren Diefenderfer, and Tevian Dray were named the 2017 Deborah and Franklin Tepper Haimo Award winners by the Mathematical Association of America (MAA) for their teaching effectiveness and influence beyond their institutions.

Changing Antarctic waters could trigger steep rise in sea levels
Current changes in the ocean around Antarctica are disturbingly close to conditions 14,000 years ago that led to the rapid melting of the Antarctic ice sheets and a three meter rise in global sea levels, according to new research published in Scientific Reports.

TSRI researchers discover surprising process behind sense of touch
Biologists on the Florida campus of The Scripps Research Institute (TSRI) have discovered a new mechanism that likely underlies how we feel force or touch.

KTU Researcher Appointed to the UN Sustainable Development Experts Board
Jurgis Kazimieras Staniškis, professor at Kaunas University of Technology (KTU), Institute of Environmental Engineering was appointed to United Nations independent group of scientists to draft the Global Sustainable Development Report.

Damon Runyon-Rachleff Innovation Awards granted for pioneering ideas in cancer research
The Damon Runyon Cancer Research Foundation announced that nine scientists with novel approaches to fighting cancer have been named 2017 recipients of the Damon Runyon-Rachleff Innovation Award.

Better the devil you know
Many birds choose partners for life -- it offers many advantages and often improves a couple's breeding output.

Using fat to help wounds heal without scars
Doctors have found a way to manipulate wounds to heal as regenerated skin rather than scar tissue.

Stanford study shows development of face recognition entails brain tissue growth
A central tenet in neuroscience has been that the amount of brain tissue goes in one direction throughout our lives -- from too much to just enough.

Measuring trees with the speed of sound
Foresters and researchers are using sound to look inside living trees.

Cancer death rate has dropped 25 percent since 1991 peak
A steady decline over more than two decades has resulted in a 25 percent drop in the overall cancer death rate in the United States.

Salk scientists crack the structure of HIV machinery
Antiviral therapy could be improved with the newly uncovered atomic-level details.

Genetics play a significant role in immunity, new research finds
Nearly three-quarters of immune traits are influenced by genes, new research from King's College London reveals.

Radar reveals meltwater's year-round life under Greenland ice
When summer temperatures rise in Greenland and the melt season begins, water pools on the surface, and sometimes disappears down holes in the ice.

Taking hour-long afternoon naps improves thinking and memory in older Chinese adults
Study participants who took an hour-long nap after lunch did better on the mental tests compared to the people who did not nap.

Identifying children at risk of eating disorders is key to saving lives
Spotting eating disorder symptoms in children as young as nine years old will allow medics to intervene early and save lives, experts say.

ASU spectrometer to fly on new NASA mission to distant 'Trojan' asteroids
In 2021, NASA will launch a mission to a group of asteroids that accompany the giant planet Jupiter.

Arctic sea ice loss impacts beluga whale migration
A new University of Washington study finds the annual migration of some beluga whales in Alaska is altered by sea ice changes in the Arctic, while other belugas do not appear to be affected.

New university research center to test boundaries of smart transportation in NYC and more
The US Department of Transportation has selected a research consortium led by the NYU Tandon School of Engineering to become the first Tier 1 University Transportation Center in New York City, charged with taking on some of the most pressing mobility challenges facing urban areas.

Mouse model points to potential new treatment for Alzheimer's disease
Treatment with an inhibitor of 12/15-lipoxygenase, an enzyme elevated in patients with Alzheimer's disease (AD), reverses cognitive decline and neuropathology in an AD mouse model, reports a new study in Biological Psychiatry.

Deepest X-ray image ever reveals black hole treasure trove
An unparalleled image from NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory is giving an international team of astronomers the best look yet at the growth of black holes over billions of years beginning soon after the Big Bang.

Julio Ottino awarded top national academy prize for innovative education
Julio M. Ottino, dean of the McCormick School of Engineering at Northwestern University, has been awarded a prestigious national education prize for the development and implementation of Whole-Brain Engineering, the school's principal guiding strategy for more than a decade.

Efforts are needed to enrich the lives of killer whales in captivity
Keeping Killer whales in zoos and aquariums has become highly controversial.

A flexible transistor that conforms to skin
Researchers have created a stretchy transistor that can be elongated to twice its length with only minimal changes in its conductivity.

Genomic data sharing is critical to improving genetic health care
ACMG tackles the question of how to make sense of the massive amount of genetic information being generated for better patient care in a new statement, 'Laboratory and Clinical Genomics Data Sharing is Crucial to Improving Genetic Health Care.' Genomic Data Sharing is critical to improving healthcare says ACMG's new position statement.

When being extra sweet doesn't pay off
A new study reveals how competitiveness among bats, as well as relative perceptions of sweetness when tasting nectar, shape the evolution of nectar-producing plants.

Are tiny grazers the new hope for Caribbean reefs?
Thirty years ago a mysterious disease wiped out long-spined black sea urchins across the Caribbean, leading to massive algal overgrowth that smothered already overfished coral reefs.

New book by Baker Institute's Coates Ulrichsen explores the United Arab Emirates' rise
The United Arab Emirates has become deeply embedded in the contemporary system of international power, politics and policymaking, according to a new book by Kristian Coates Ulrichsen, fellow for the Middle East at Rice University's Baker Institute for Public Policy.

Hummingbirds see motion in an unexpected way
Have you ever imagined what the world must look like to hummingbirds as they zoom about at speeds of up to 60 miles per hour?

New report calls for revisions to WIC food packages; changes would save money over time
A new congressionally mandated report from the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine proposes updated revisions to the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) to better align with the Dietary Guidelines for Americans and promote and support breast-feeding.

Pandemic preparedness in the next administration
As the United States prepares for new leadership, global health thought leaders will convene January 10 to discuss ways the Trump administration can contribute to pandemic preparedness, global health security, and domestic readiness and resilience.

Foods rich in resistant starch may benefit health
A new comprehensive review examines the potential health benefits of resistant starch, a form of starch that is not digested in the small intestine and is therefore considered a type of dietary fiber.

The Lancet Diabetes & Endocrinology: Gastric bypass helps severely obese teenagers maintain weight loss over long term
Gastric bypass surgery helps severely obese teenagers lose weight and keep it off, according to the first long-term follow-up studies of teenagers who had undergone the procedure 5-12 years earlier.

Physicists solve decades-old scientific mystery of negative differential resistance
With a storied history that includes more than a half-century of research, a Nobel Prize, and multiple attempts at practical applications, the story of negative differential resistance -- or NDR -- reads like a scientific mystery, a mystery that University of Alberta physicists have at last succeeded in unraveling.

Climate change could trigger strong sea level rise
About 15,000 years ago, the ocean around Antarctica has seen an abrupt sea level rise of several meters.

Alarming levels of hypertension found in the general public
A new study finds that 50 percent of the Canadian public is unaware that they suffer from high blood pressure, with most of them unaware of their condition or unwilling to address and manage their high blood pressure.

Immune cell therapy shows promising results for lymphoma patients
Moffitt Cancer Center physician investigators are working to bring immune cellular therapies to refractory diffuse large B-cell lymphoma patients.

One part of the brain unexpectedly continues to grow in adulthood
In humans, the part of the brain that's responsible for face recognition continues to grow into adulthood, a new study reveals.

UNC Catalyst initiative aims to create, share tools to fight rare diseases
The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill has launched UNC Catlayst with a $2 million grant from the Eshelman Institute for Innovation.

A colorful yet little known snout moth genus from China with 5 new species
A group of beautiful snout moths from China has been revised by three scientists.

Older lung cancer patients face significant treatment burden
Depending on the type of treatment older lung cancer patients receive, they can spend an average of one in three days interacting with the healthcare system in the first 60 days after surgery or radiation therapy, according to a study by Yale researchers.

Physical activity reduces heart disease deaths for older adults
A new study, published in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society, examined whether regular leisure-time physical activity could reduce deaths from all causes, and whether it also could reduce deaths from cardiovascular disease.

Research helps explain why androgen-deprivation therapy doesn't work for many prostate cancers
Metastatic prostate cancer, or prostate cancer that has spread to other organs, is incurable.

Halting lethal childhood leukemia
Scientists have discovered the genetic driver of a lethal childhood leukemia that affects newborns and infants and identified a targeted molecular therapy that halts the proliferation of leukemic cells.

Females seeking a sex partner can tell whether males experienced stress during adolescence
Sexual preference is influenced by males' adolescent social stress history and social status, according to a research team including Nicole Cameron, assistant professor of psychology at Binghamton University, State University of New York.

Off-grid power in remote areas will require special business model to succeed
Low-cost, off-grid solar energy could provide significant economic benefit to people living in some remote areas, but a new study suggests they generally lack the access to financial resources, commercial institutions and markets needed to bring solar electricity to their communities.

Researchers identify factors associated with stopping treatment for opioid dependence
Individuals with opioid use disorder who are treated with buprenorphine, a commonly prescribed drug to treat addiction, are more likely to disengage from treatment programs if they are black or Hispanic, unemployed, or have hepatitis C according to a study published online in the Journal of Substance Abuse Treatment.

New research predicts the future of coral reefs under climate change
New climate model projections of the world's coral reefs reveal which reefs will be hit first by annual coral bleaching, an event that poses the gravest threat to one of the Earth's most important ecosystems.

Stanford updates app for sharing data on heart health
A new version of the free MyHealth Counts app is available.

NYSCF and Personal Genome Project announce availability of fully sequenced stem cell lines
The New York Stem Cell Foundation (NYSCF) Research Institute and the Personal Genomes Project (PGP) today announced the availability of a unique new stem cell resource for scientists around the world.

Lung cancer patients may benefit from delayed chemotherapy after surgery
A new Yale study suggests that patients with a common form of lung cancer may still benefit from delayed chemotherapy started up to four months after surgery, according to the researchers.

Eight years of decreased MRSA health care-associated infections associated with Veterans Affairs Prevention Initiative
The Department of Veterans Affairs' Veterans Health Administration's campaign to limit healthcare facility-associated infections (HAIs) of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) continues to make significant progress, according to a study published in the January issue of the American Journal of Infection Control, the official journal of the Association for Professionals in Infection Control and Epidemiology (APIC).

Protein associated with Parkinson's travels from brain to gut
Researchers of the German Center for Neurodegenerative Diseases have found that 'alpha-synuclein,' a protein involved in a series of neurological disorders including Parkinson's disease, is capable of traveling from brain to stomach and that it does so following a specific pathway.

Hong Kong hosts more than a quarter of all marine species recorded in China
Hong Kong has a record of 5,943 marine species according to a recent review by a research group led by Professor Gray A.

New therapeutic agent proves more effective treatment for advanced prostate cancer
A German multicenter study, initiated by the German Society of Nuclear Medicine, demonstrates that lutetium-177-labeled PSMA-617 is a promising new therapeutic agent for radioligand therapy of patients with metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer.

South American fossil tomatillos show nightshades evolved earlier than thought
Delicate fossil remains of tomatillos found in Patagonia, Argentina, show that this branch of the economically important family that also includes potatoes, peppers, tobacco, petunias and tomatoes existed 52 million years ago, long before the dates previously ascribed to these species, according to an international team of scientists.

Authors of year's best books in mathematics honored
Prizes for the year's best books in mathematics were awarded to Ian Stewart and Tim Chartier by the Mathematical Association of America (MAA) on Jan.

Scientists find how cancer cells can shrug off physical constraints on growth and spread
Scientists have revealed how cancer cells are able to break free of the physical restraints imposed by their surroundings in order to grow and spread around the body.

Mothers' lack of legal knowledge linked to juvenile re-offending
Youth who commit crimes for the first time are more likely to re-offend if their mothers don't participate in their legal process, but mothers are widely unfamiliar with the juvenile justice system, finds a new study by an Michigan State University criminologist.

Telecommunications light amplifier could strengthen integrity of transmitted data
Imagine a dim light which is insufficiently bright enough to illuminate a room.

NOAA in 2017 to award up to $100 million for oil, chemical spill restoration projects
In 2017, NOAA Fisheries will award up to $100 million to restoration partners to implement projects addressing habitats and coastlines damaged by oil and chemical spills. 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