Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

January 31, 2017
The National Institute of Polar Research (NIPR) launches Polar Data Journal
The National Institute of Polar Research (NIPR), which serves as Japan's key institution for scientific research and observation in Polar Regions, launched Polar Data Journal, a new data journal, this January.

UTSW urges use of evidence-based medicine to avoid overtreatment of type 2 diabetes
UT Southwestern Medical Center research supports an evidence-based medicine (EBM) approach that embraces individualized care to prevent overtreatment, specifically for patients with type 2 diabetes.

Sound Off! The Navy, haring protection and mobile devices
The Office of Naval Research is sponsoring the development of a new app to help warfighters learn about hearing protection on their mobile Android devices -- and snap close-up selfies of themselves wearing earplugs to see if they're using them properly.

UD's Anderson Janotti receives NSF Career Award to model defects in complex materials
The University of Delaware's Anderson Janotti has won a National Science Foundation Faculty Early Career Development Award to develop computational models of defects in materials that are used for energy, electronics, and optoelectronics applications.

What your mucus says about your health (video)
It's peak cold and flu season, and mucus is making many of our lives miserable.

Large marine protected areas effectively protect reef shark populations
Researchers at Stanford's Hopkins Marine Station find that expanded marine protected areas are successful in limiting fishing and increasing reef shark populations.

Women, Minorities and Persons with Disabilities in Science and Engineering report released
The National Center for Science and Engineering Statistics (NCSES) today announced the release of the 2017 Women, Minorities, and Persons with Disabilities in Science and Engineering (WMPD) report, the federal government's most comprehensive look at the participation of these three demographic groups in science and engineering education and employment.

Mind reader: A consumer EEG device serves up rich new troves of scientific data
A wireless brain-sensing headband made to help users focus their thoughts is also generating valuable data for neuroscience researchers, shedding light on what happens to our thinking processes as we age, for example, or how women and men process thoughts differently.

Brain-computer interface allows completely locked-in people to communicate
A brain-computer interface that can decipher the thoughts of people who are unable to communicate could revolutionize the lives of those living with completely locked-in syndrome, according to a new paper publishing Jan.

Valo Therapeutics develops a novel virus-based cancer immunotherapy
A spin-out from the University of Helsinki, Valo Therapeutics is developing novel oncolytic viral vaccines for the treatment of multiple forms of cancer.

Paper spotlights key flaw in widely used radioisotope dating technique
An oversight in a radioisotope dating technique used to date everything from meteorites to geologic samples means scientists have likely overestimated the age of many samples.

For bonding and breastfeeding, newborns benefit from a cheek full of dextrose
University at Buffalo researchers at Women & Children's Hospital of Buffalo (WCHOB) and other teams worldwide are proving that a dose of dextrose gel administered into a baby's cheek along with regular feedings can raise hypoglycemic babies' blood sugar, allowing them to stay with their mothers, which promotes breastfeeding.

IU study examines sexual risk-taking, HIV prevention among older adults in Africa
One of the most common myths around older adults is that they are not sexually active.

IUPUI study: Climate change drove population decline in New World before Europeans arrived
IUPUI scientists report on dramatic environmental changes that occurred as Native Americans flourished and then vanished from the Midwestern United States before Europeans arrived.

The making of Antarctica
A group of researchers, led by scientists in McGill University's Dept. of Earth and Planetary Sciences, suggest that the best way to understand the creation of the glaciers in Antarctica is by linking two competing theories about their origins.

Why is some social media content interpreted as bragging?
People who post personal content on social networking sites such as Facebook and try to present themselves in a positive light may be perceived as bragging, and therefore be less attractive to others, according to a new study published in Cyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking.

Mathematical model reveals parental involvement can 'immunize' students from dropping out
The bad news? It only works up to a point.

Scientists show how cells communicate
Primary cilia are antenna-like structures that are present on the surface of most cells in the human body.

Founding fathers used fake news, racial fear-mongering to unite colonies
Fake news and fear-based political dialogue are nothing new to politics.

Boxer crabs acquire anemones by stealing from each other, and splitting them into clones
Researchers have described a little known yet fascinating aspect of the behavior of Lybia crabs, a species which holds sea anemones in each of its claws (behavior which has earnt it the nickname 'boxer' or 'pom-pom' crab).

Paracetamol study could open door for way to treat liver damage
Scientists have shed light on how paracetamol can damage the liver, by harming vital structural connections between adjacent cells in the organ.

Air pollution may lead to dementia in older women
Tiny air pollution particles -- the type that mainly comes from power plants and automobiles -- may greatly increase the chance of dementia, including Alzheimer's disease.

Scat sniffer dogs tell York U researchers a lot about endangered lizards
Dogs can be trained to find almost anything, but one York University researcher had them detect something a little unusual -- the scat of endangered blunt-nosed leopard lizards.

New study connects running motion to ground force, provides patterns for any runner
Researchers at Southern Methodist University, Dallas, have developed a concise approach to understanding the mechanics of human running.

Once-dried tiny tributary serves as shelter for wintering fish
Hokkaido University researchers have found that more than 10,000 stream fish migrated to a small tributary only four months after it had dried out during the summer, suggesting that even remnant tributaries are critical wintering habitats.

Exploring the brain/fat connection to identify key differences amongst humans and monkeys
In a tour-de-force comparative study, Professors Philipp Khaitovich, Patrick Giavalisco et al., utilized vast brain banks from across the world, to take a new approach to understanding uniquely human brain changes -- the complete metabolic profile of fats, known as lipids, within the prefrontal cortex (PFC).

Discovery helps explain why only some people develop life-threatening dengue infections
After contracting dengue fever once, certain people who encounter the virus again develop much more severe infections.

Scientists step closer to developing new drug in fight against antimicrobial resistance
Scientists have for the first time determined the molecular structure of a new antibiotic which could hold the key to tackling drug resistant bacteria.

Brain-computer interface allows completely locked-in people to communicate
A brain-computer interface that can decipher the thoughts of people who are unable to communicate could revolutionize the lives of those living with complete locked-in syndrome according to a new paper published in PLOS Biology.

Reversible saliva allows frogs to hang on to next meal
A Georgia Tech study says a frog tongue's stickiness is caused by a reversible saliva in combination with a super soft tongue.

MIT study: Online retail prices often match those in stores
An innovative study by an MIT economist shows that in 10 major countries, companies sell their wares at the same prices in stores and online, at the same moments, nearly three-quarters of the time.

Tracing the cosmic web with star-forming galaxies in the distant universe
A research group led by Hiroshima University has revealed a picture of the increasing fraction of massive star-forming galaxies in the distant universe.

Re-assessing 'at risk' cutoffs for birth weight
A research article published in PLOS Medicine contributes to the evidence base regarding the use of population charts for detection of fetal growth disorders and how best to determine risk of complications.

Updated cystic fibrosis diagnosis guidelines can help in diagnosis, personalized treatment
An international research group of 32 experts from nine countries has updated the guidelines for diagnosing the genetic disease cystic fibrosis.

Climate change scientists should think more about sex
Climate change can have a different impact on male and female fish, shellfish and other marine animals, with widespread implications for the future of marine life and the production of seafood.

African lake provides new clues about ancient marine life
New research shows there may have been more nitrogen in the ocean between one and two billion years ago than previously thought, allowing marine organisms to proliferate at a time when multi-cellularity and eukaryotic life first emerged.

'Arthritis 101' Congressional briefing discusses $128 billion impact to healthcare system
Experts from the American College of Rheumatology (ACR) and the Arthritis Foundation today held an 'Arthritis 101' Congressional briefing to educate new and returning Congressional leaders about arthritis and its impact on constituents and the US healthcare system.

Glucose deprivation in the brain sets stage for Alzheimer's disease, Temple study shows
One of the earliest signs of Alzheimer's disease is a decline in glucose levels in the brain.

Substance in crude oil harms fish hearts, could affect humans as well
Exposure to oil can cause severe cardiovascular effects in fish.

Rarely seen event of ant brood parasitism by scuttle flies video-documented
Ant brood parasitism by scuttle flies is a rarely observed phenomenon.

How a bacterial protein's structure aids biomedical studies
A light-sensing protein from a salt-loving, sulfur-forming microbe has proved key to developing methods essential to advanced drug discovery, understanding human vision and other biomedical applications.

Making the switch to polarization diversity
New silicon photonic chip that offers significant improvement to the optical switches used by fiber optic networks to be presented at OFC 2017 in Los Angeles.

AGS statement on discrimination
The American Geriatrics Society (AGS) opposes discrimination against healthcare professionals or older people based on race, color, religion, gender (including gender identity, sexual orientation, and pregnancy), disability, age, or national origin.

UTA aerospace engineering professor named AIAA Fellow
Frank Lu, a professor in the Aerospace Engineering Department at The University of Texas at Arlington, has been named a Fellow of the American Institute for Aeronautics and Astronautics.

Spider silk demonstrates Spider Man-like abilities
Spider silk offers new inspiration for developments in artificial muscle technology thanks to research from a collaboration of scientists in China and the US, the results of which are published today in Applied Physics Letters, from AIP Publishing.

Link between sleep and cognitive impairment in the elderly
Daytime sleepiness is very common in the elderly with prevalence rates of up to 50 percent.

Physically active children are less depressed
Being active, getting sweaty and roughhousing offer more than just physical health benefits for young children.

Autism may begin early in brain development
New research suggests that an overload of neural connections typically observed in autistic brains begins early in mammalian development, when key neurons in the brain region known as the cerebral cortex begin to form their first circuits.

Low thyroid hormone before birth alters growth and development of fetal pancreas
Levels of thyroid hormone in babies influences insulin-secreting cells of the pancreas, according to a new study published in The Journal of Physiology.

The world's first heat-driven transistor
Dan Zhao and Simone Fabiano at the Laboratory of Organic Electronics, Linköping University, have created a thermoelectric organic transistor.

The role of the tunnel
Freiburg researchers discover new molecular details about protein sorting in the cell.

Two new trials for pediatric brain cancer open at UTHealth/Children's Memorial Hermann
Two new clinical trials for pediatric brain cancer have begun at The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth) and Children's Memorial Hermann Hospital.

Increasing factory and auto emissions disrupt natural cycle in East China Sea
China's rapid ascent to global economic superpower is taking a toll on some of its ancient ways.

OSU marine ecologist receives top National Academy of Sciences honor
The National Academy of Sciences is honoring Oregon State University marine ecologist Jane Lubchenco with its most prestigious award, the Public Welfare Medal.

New UAlberta e-tool provides wake-up call for parents of children with excess weight
An innovative e-tool, developed by University of Alberta researchers and tested at the Stollery Children's Hospital, is helping lift the blinders for parents of children with excess weight by offering much-needed and welcomed support.

Research journey to the center of the Earth
Researchers say they may be one step closer to solving the mystery at the core of the Earth.

'Ghost particles' could improve understanding the universe
New measurements of neutrino oscillations, observed at the IceCube Neutrino Observatory at the South Pole, have shed light on outstanding questions regarding fundamental properties of neutrinos.

Webinar to highlight strategies, limitations of managing acute ischemic stroke
New strategies that integrate imaging into the management of acute ischemic stroke (AIS) published in the January 2017 issue of the American Journal of Roentgenology will be discussed in a webinar hosted by ARRS

How to improve data management in the supercomputers of the future
Universidad Carlos III de Madrid (UC3M) is researching how to establish new foundations for data management in the big supercomputing systems of the future.

Scientists take the first step toward creating efficient electrolyte-free batteries
Scientists of Peter the Great Saint-Petersburg Polytechnic University (SPbPU) in collaboration with the French, Swiss and Polish researchers have found unique atomic-scale processes in crystal lattice of antiferroelectric lead zirconate during synchrotron x-ray scattering experiment.

European experts highlight the potential of xenografts in personalized oncology
European research lays the foundation for the development of new and ambitious research projects with xenografts derived from patients, preclinical models with great potential to advance research and treatment in cancer.

Study to examine the relationship between grasslands and soil biodiversity
A new four-year study by researchers with the University of Tennessee Institute of Agriculture will evaluate pastures to document how management of native grasslands may enhance soil biodiversity and contribute to producer profitability.

Infrared links could simplify data center communications
Data centers are the central point of many, if not most, information systems today, but the masses of wires interconnecting the servers and piled high on racks begins to resemble last year's tangled Christmas-tree lights disaster.

Chimps' behavior following death disturbing to ISU anthropologist
Shocking is one word Jill Pruetz uses to describe the behavior she witnessed after a chimp was killed at her research site in Fongoli, Senegal.

Land-use change possibly produces more carbon dioxide than assumed so far
CO2 emissions caused by land use changes may possibly be higher than assumed so far.

Mechanism for photosynthesis already existed in primeval microbe
A Japanese research team has discovered an evolutionary model for the biological function that creates CO2 from glucose in photosynthesis.

Can a novel combination of treatments help eradicate HIV?
A Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine researcher has received a $2.5 million grant from Gilead Sciences, a California-based biopharmaceutical company, to see if two so-far separately-used AIDS treatments are even more effective when used as a pair.

Changes in gene contribute independently to breast and ovarian cancer
Defects in the EMSY gene -- long thought to drive cancer by turning off the protection afforded by the BRCA genes -- spur cancer growth on their own.

Salofa introduces a blue-green algae test developed by VTT and the University of Turku
Salofa Oy will commercialize the blue-green algae (cyanobacteria) test originally developed by the VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland and the University of Turku.

Major €5 million project to improve heart disease treatment with smart pacemaker technology
Creating a new generation of advanced pacemakers which adapt to the demands of a patient's body is the goal of a new €5 million international research consortium led by the University of Bath.

Optimized compiler yields more-efficient parallel programs
By modifying the 'middle end' of the popular open-source compiler LLVM, MIT computer scientists have created a C compiler that optimizes parallel code better than any other.

Existing reprocessing techniques prove insufficient for flexible endoscopes
Current techniques used to clean endoscopes for reuse are not consistently effective, according to a study published in the February issue of the American Journal of Infection Control, the official journal of the Association for Professionals in Infection Control and Epidemiology (APIC).

Reversing the HIV epidemic: Europe needs to scale-up prevention, testing and treatment
Maltese Presidency of the Council of the European Union Conference and the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC), HIV experts from across the European Union discuss how to reverse the HIV epidemic and how to prepare Europe to achieve the set target of ending AIDS by 2030.

ICSU calls on government of United States to rescind Executive Order
Joining many national and international organizations, the International Council for Science (ICSU) calls on the government of the United States of America to rescind the Executive Order 'Protecting the Nation from Foreign Terrorist Entry into the United States,' which is effectively banning entry to the United States for citizens of seven countries.

Are prebiotics or probiotics effective against dermatitis?
Evidence supporting a key role for an altered gut microbiome in the development of atopic dermatitis (AD) would suggest that the use of probiotics or prebiotics to correct microbial imbalances in the gut could help prevent or treat AD.

Lung ultrasound can help doctors see other diseases that mask as lethal clots in lung
Lung ultrasound can show alternative diagnoses and should be considered when evaluating patients with suspected pulmonary embolism.

Non-reporting 'Did You Feel It?' areas can be used to improve earthquake intensity maps
The remarkable reach of the US Geological Survey's 'Did You Feel It?' website can be used to improve maps of earthquake intensity -- if non-reporting areas are including in the mapping analysis, according to a new study published online Feb.

Children's Hospital of Orange County honored for improving care with health information technology
Children's Hospital of Orange County (CHOC) was named a 2016 Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS) Enterprise Davies Award recipient for achieving improvements in patient care through the use of health information technology.

The Lancet: Low socioeconomic status reduces life expectancy and should be counted as a major risk factor in health policy, study says
Low socioeconomic status is linked to significant reductions in life expectancy and should be considered a major risk factor for ill health and early death in national and global health policies, according to a study of 1.7 million people published by The Lancet.

MD Anderson and Guardant Health announce partnership to make comprehensive liquid biopsy part of on
The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center and Guardant Health today announced a multi-year partnership designed to accelerate comprehensive liquid biopsy technology into the standard of care in cancer treatment.

Dying at home or in hospital dependent on wealth, location and number of diseases
In a new study, published today in BMC Medicine, researchers from King's College London's Cicely Saunders Institute studied a national data set of all deaths from two common groups of respiratory diseases -- chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and interstitial pulmonary diseases, covering 380,232 people over 14 years.

Kaiser Permanente study finds children exposed to complications at birth at risk of autism
Children who were exposed to complications shortly before or during birth, including birth asphyxia and preeclampsia, were more likely to develop autism spectrum disorder, according to a Kaiser Permanente study published today in the American Journal of Perinatology.

Researchers confirm the existence of a 'lost continent' under Mauritius
Scientists have confirmed the existence of a 'lost continent' under the Indian Ocean island of Mauritius that was left-over by the break-up of the supercontinent, Gondwana, which started about 200 million years ago.

UTA materials scientist invents breath monitor to detect flu
Perena Gouma, a professor in the Materials Science and Engineering Department at The University of Texas at Arlington, has published an article in the journal Sensors that describes her invention of a hand-held breath monitor that can potentially detect the flu virus.

Acid trip makes clumsy cone snails miss their prey
Deadly cone snails are too clumsy to catch their prey when exposed to the levels of ocean acidification expected under predicted climate change, according to new research published in Biology Letters.

NASA's IMERG calculated rainfall of Tropical Cyclone 03S
NASA's IMERG product was used to calculate the amount of rainfall generated by Ex-tropical Cyclone 03S.

Better and faster diagnosis of diseases
Microsystems engineer Can Dincer wins the second prize at Gips-Schüle young scientist competition.

Mount Sinai researchers generate rat model of autism
A study found oxytocin improves behavioral and electrophysiological deficits in a novel Shank3-deficient rat.

Non-severe infections can cause serious mental disorders
Previous studies have shown that patients who are hospitalised with severe infections have an increased risk of developing schizophrenia and depression.

Females no longer neglected in obesity research
Scientists revise the typical use of male rats and point to sex-differences that can drastically change how we approach obesity and the related health problems in females.

Tuberculosis-resistant cows developed for the first time using CRISPR technology
CRISPR/Cas9 gene-editing technology has been used for the first time to successfully produce live cows with increased resistance to bovine tuberculosis, reports new research published in the open access journal Genome Biology.

Big data brings breast cancer research forwards by 'decades'
Scientists have created a 'map' linking the shape of breast cancer cells to genes turned on and off, and matched it to real disease outcomes, which could one day help doctors select treatments, according to a study published in Genome Research.

Yeast mutants unlock the secrets of aging
In two recently published articles, Concordia biology professor Vladimir Titorenko from the Faculty of Arts and Science and a team of fellow researchers take a closer look into what delaying and accelerating yeast genes might mean for humans.

Find elusive particles from your phone with Oxford's new neutrino viewer app
Not so long ago, observing fundamental particles was reserved for scientists with complex equipment.

Tracking fishing vessels and sharks reveals protection for large mobile animals
An international initiative to increase the amount of Marine Protected Area (MPAs) from the current 2 percent to 10 percent by the year 2020 has drawn critics over the need and the practicality.

Reservoir divers: Select antiviral cells can access HIV's hideouts
HIV/SIV-infected cells hide out in areas of lymph nodes that most 'killer' antiviral cells don't have access to.

Drug shows promise for treating alcoholism
A new study by UCLA researchers has found that an anti-inflammatory drug called Ibudilast, used in Japan to treat asthma, may be a promising new treatment for alcoholism.

Plants smell different when they are eaten by exotic herbivores
When they are chewed by insects or other small animals, many plants react by releasing odors to attract the insect's enemies.

Continuous glucose monitoring lowers blood sugar in the long term for type 1 diabetes
Significantly decreased blood sugar levels over time -- and increased well-being.

Endocrine Society experts issue clinical practice guideline on pediatric obesity
The Endocrine Society today issued a Clinical Practice Guideline advising healthcare providers on how to prevent and treat childhood obesity with lifestyle changes.

RAS response to the US Executive Order banning entry from 7 countries
The Royal Astronomical Society (RAS) is greatly concerned by the Executive Order announced last week by US President Donald Trump, which prevents people from seven Middle Eastern and African countries from entering the United States.

Habitat features and social behavior impact how baboons move as a group
When deciding what path to take during collective movement, individual baboons will likely follow the road most traveled by their group mates, according to new findings published in eLife.

Scientists aim to reduce animals killed in drug testing
Researchers from Hiroshima University's Graduate School of Biosphere Science believe their technique for examining inflammation in fatty tissues could revolutionize drug testing on animals: 'Animal experimentation is a serious social problem in developed countries, with many animals being sacrificed in order to develop medicines, cosmetics and functional foods for humans.

Drug candidate stabilizes essential transport mechanism in nerve cells
Important new Tel Aviv University research has discovered how a drug candidate works to possibly alleviate Alzheimer's disease and autism spectrum disorders.

NASA's new shape-shifting radiator inspired by origami
Japan's ancient art of paper folding has inspired the design of a potentially trailblazing 'smart' radiator that a NASA technologist is now developing to remove or retain heat on small satellites. 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