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Science Current Events and Science News | Brightsurf | June 06, 2017


Stem cells may be the key to staying strong in old age
A new URMC study, performed in mice, could lead to new approaches to help people stay stronger in old age.
What makes a reach movement effortful?
Scientists from the German Primate Center have determined which characteristics of an arm movement influence the subjective effort associated with this movement.
Drinking diet beverages during pregnancy linked to child obesity, NIH study suggests
Children born to women who had gestational diabetes and drank at least one artificially sweetened beverage per day during pregnancy were more likely to be overweight or obese at age 7, compared to children born to women who had gestational diabetes and drank water instead of artificially sweetened beverages, according to a study led by researchers at the National Institutes of Health.
Study examines caregiving by family members, other unpaid individuals
Caregiving is a significant public health topic because it affects the health and well-being of both the older adult and his or her caregivers.
Chemistry life hacks: Food edition (video)
Reactions is back with another round of chemistry life hacks.
Gut bacteria could protect cancer patients and pregnant women from Listeria, study suggests
Researchers at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York have discovered that bacteria living in the gut provide a first line of defense against severe Listeria infections.
Neutrino discovery: A step closer to finding CP violation
Latest data by T2K Collaboration in their search to find evidence of CP violation has been published.
New evidence reveals source of 1586 Sanriku, Japan tsunami
A team of researchers, led by Dr. Rhett Butler, geophysicist at the University of Hawai'i at Mānoa (UHM), re-examined historical evidence around the Pacific and discovered the origin of the tsunami that hit Sanriku, Japan in 1586 -- a mega-earthquake from the Aleutian Islands that broadly impacted the north Pacific.
HKBU clinical study finds effective stability rate of over 80 percent in CM treatment of chronic renal failure
A clinical study conducted by HKBU found that that the effective stability rate of the Chinese medicine treatment for chronic renal failure for periods of three months, half a year and one year is 96.3 percent, 88.89 percent and 83.95 percent respectively.
Digital games improve mental health & educational outcomes of Syrian refugee children
Digital games can effectively teach refugee children much-needed skills -- including a new language, cognitive skills, and coding -- while also improving their mental health, finds research by New York University, the City University of New York, and Turkey's Bahcesehir University.
Newly discovered disease mechanism for type 2 diabetes
A newly discovered mechanism behind reduced insulin production in type 2 diabetes is now being presented.
New possible target for cancer treatment
Scientists at Karolinska Institutet in Sweden report that cancer cells and normal cells use different 'gene switches' in order to regulate the expression of genes that control growth.
What makes a movement feel strenuous?
Scientists have determined which characteristics of an arm movement influence the subjective effort associated with this movement.
El Niño and global warming combine to cause record-breaking heat in Southeast Asia
Scientists at The University of Texas Institute for Geophysics (UTIG) have found that a devastating combination of global warming and El Niño is responsible for causing extreme temperatures in April 2016 in Southeast Asia.
New data for old bones: How the famous Cleveland-Lloyd dinosaur bone bed came to be
The Cleveland-Lloyd Dinosaur Quarry is the densest collection of Jurassic dinosaur fossils.
Japan's largest complete dinosaur skeleton discovered
The complete skeleton of an eight-meter-long dinosaur has been unearthed from marine deposits dating back 72 million years at Japan's northern island of Hokkaido, making it the largest dinosaur skeleton ever found in Japan, according to researchers.
Impact of protective bacteria linked to infection route, study finds
The benefits of protective bacteria -- which safeguard organisms from further disease without causing harm -- depend on how subsequent infections enter the body, a study of fruit flies has shown.
New planet found to be hotter than most stars
A newly discovered Jupiter-like world is so hot that even its nights are like the flame of a welding torch.
Is white or whole wheat bread 'healthier?' Depends on the person
Despite many studies looking at which bread is the healthiest, it is still not clear what effect bread and differences among bread types have on clinically relevant parameters and on the microbiome.
Sleep disturbances predict substance use among college athletes
Preliminary results of a new study show that sleep disturbance is strongly related to the use of alcohol, tobacco, and illicit drugs among student athletes in college.
New chemotherapy approach offers breast cancer patients a better quality of life
The chemotherapy drug capecitabine gives patients a better quality of life and is as effective at preventing breast cancer from returning as the alternative regimen called CMF, when given following epirubicin.
TSRI anti-heroin vaccine found effective in non-human primates
This is the first vaccine against an opioid to pass this stage of preclinical testing.
Officers on afternoon shift report being more fatigued
Officers who work afternoons are twice as likely to report being tired, which puts them at greater risk for accidents, errors and stress, according to results of UB-led study that won first place in national conference poster competition.
Weight gain greater, less than recommended during pregnancy linked with increased risk of adverse outcomes
In an analysis that included more than 1.3 million pregnancies, weight gain during pregnancy that was greater or less than guideline recommendations was associated with a higher risk of adverse outcomes for mothers and infants, compared with weight gain within recommended levels, according to a study published by JAMA.
Starving prostate cancer with what you eat for dinner
When you dine on curry and baked apples, enjoy the fact that you are eating something that could play a role starving -- or even preventing -- cancer.
A 12-hour biological clock coordinates essential bodily functions
In addition to 24-hour clocks, mammals and other organisms have 12-hour clocks that are autonomous, work independently from 24-hour clocks and can be modified by external factors.
Meals on the go: The physics of whales' eating habits
Saint Louis University professor of physics Jean Potvin, Ph.D., and colleagues detail for the first time how baleen whales use crossflow filtration to separate prey from water without ever coming into contact with the baleen.
Is 'doing good' bad for a company's bottom line? Yes, says FAU study
Companies that try to 'do good' are likely to find that Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) is bad for their bottom lines, according to a new study from Florida Atlantic University's College of Business.
Alectinib potential new standard of care for ALK-positive non-small lung cancer
Results of a 303-patient, multi-national phase III clinical trial known as ALEX published today in the New England Journal of Medicine and presented concurrently at the American Society for Clinical Oncology (ASCO) Annual Meeting 2017 argue for alectinib replacing crizotinib as first-line standard of care in advanced ALK-positive non-small cell lung cancer.
Culture affects how people deceive others say researchers
Psychologists have discovered that people's language changes when they lie depending on their cultural background.
Analysis of pathways activation landscape in oral squamous cell carcinoma and pre-neoplastic lesions
Oral dysplastic lesions are considered precursors of OSCC. However only a subset of such lesions progress to invasive cancer.
Hiding in plain sight: New species of flying squirrel discovered
A new study published May 30 in the Journal of Mammalogy describes a newly discovered third species of flying squirrel in North America -- now known as Humboldt's flying squirrel, or Glaucomys oregonensis.
New diode features optically controlled capacitance
Researchers have developed a capacitor with a metal-insulator-semiconductor diode structure that is tunable by illumination.
Looking to the future of organs-on-chip
A new special issue from Future Science OA examines novel organ-on-a-chip research and provides expert insight into the future of the field.
Scientists develop divide and conquer approach for more stable power generation
Wind is powerful, but it doesn't always blow where and when it's needed.
What the hair of a fly tells us about cancer
Cells divide into two identical cells that then divide in turn, meaning that any tissue can grow exponentially.
Jackpot! Cosmic magnifying-glass effect captures universe's brightest galaxies
Boosted by natural magnifying lenses in space, NASA's Hubble Space Telescope has captured unique close-up views of the universe's brightest infrared galaxies, which are as much as 10,000 times more luminous than our Milky Way.
Take a coffee or tea break to protect your liver
According to a new study published in the Journal of Hepatology, researchers found that drinking coffee and herbal tea may protect against liver fibrosis, estimated as the degree of liver stiffness, which is high in extensive scarring of the liver.
Trauma centers with American College of Surgeons verification have fewer complications
Major complications from injury -- and consequently a longer hospital stay -- are more likely for pediatric and elderly patients nationwide when treatment occurs at a trauma center not verified by the American College of Surgeons Committee on Trauma (ACS-COT), compared with an ACS-COT-verified center, according to new study findings.
Celestial boondocks: Study supports the idea we live in a void
A new study by a UW-Madison undergraduate not only firms up the idea that we exist in one of the holes of the Swiss cheese structure of the cosmos, but helps ease the apparent disagreement between different measurements of the Hubble Constant, the unit cosmologists use to describe the rate at which the universe is expanding today.
New low-cost material for lighting and diagnostics produces white light imitating sunlight
Researchers at the University of Turku, Finland, have developed a synthetic material based on the natural hackmanite mineral which produces broad spectrum white light in lamps.
Standard dosage for one lung cancer treatment may be too high
A new study published in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute indicates that the customary pembrolizumab dose for treatment of metastatic non-small cell lung cancer may be higher than is needed for effective treatment.
Can you hear me now?
When trying to be heard over noise, humans and animals raise their voices.
A method to improve in vitro tests
EPFL researchers propose a new way of performing in vitro tests on nanoparticles that could enhance a correlation to in vivo results.
Clinical benefit of clot retrieval now proven up to 24 hours after major ischemic stroke
Results of an international, randomized controlled research study show that mechanical thrombectomy, which is an endovascular treatment to remove a stroke-causing blood clot in the brain, is effective in some patients even when performed within 6 to 24 hours after a stroke.
Young at heart: Restoring cardiac function with a matrix molecule
Research at the Weizmann Institute of Science has uncovered a molecule in newborn hearts that appears to control the renewal process.
Device designed to exploit scattering of light by mechanical vibrations
Researchers at the University of Campinas's Gleb Wataghin Physics Institute (IFGW-UNICAMP) in São Paulo State, Brazil, have theoretically developed a silicon photonic device with a diameter of approximately 10 microns (μm), equivalent to one tenth of the thickness of a human hair, that would enable optical and mechanical waves vibrating at tens of gigahertz (GHz) to interact.
New research provides practical cooking tips for your red wine sauce
Will you get intoxicated by pouring beer or wine into your sauce or stew?
CU Boulder researchers explain mystery of 'banging' galaxy clusters
June 6, 2017 -Two galaxy clusters in the process of merging created a layer of surprisingly hot gas between them that University of Colorado Boulder astronomers believe is from turbulence caused by banging into each other at supersonic speeds.
Enrollment in early intervention services may be influenced by administering agency
Many eligible children do not enroll in services to improve cognitive, behavioral and physical skills under the federal Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act and the rates of enrollment vary in part by which agency at the state level is serving as the lead administrator.
Neurodegenerative disease mechanism and potential drug identified
Two new, UC Davis-led studies of neurodegenerative diseases linked to mitochondrial defects offer hope for developing a new biomarker for research and diagnostics, and a drug for treating such diseases.
Are friends better for us than family?
The power of friendship gets stronger with age and may even be more important than family relationships, indicates new research by a Michigan State University scholar.
Variable speed limits could reduce crashes, ease congestion in highway work zones
As the summer months approach, most people turn to thoughts of sunshine, outdoor barbecues and destination trips.
Safety of gene transfer to treat heart failure supports further clinical development
Based on the encouraging safety data that has emerged from multiple clinical trials that used different gene transfer approaches to improve heart function in patients suffering from heart failure with reduced ejection fraction, researchers conclude that this therapeutic strategy can be advanced with acceptable risk.
Sequential options prompt future thinking, boost patience
When faced with a tempting choice, it can be hard to stop and think through the potential consequences, but new research suggests that framing the choice as a sequence of events can help us exercise patience by prompting us to imagine the future.
Precision therapy enasidenib effective in treating deadly form of leukemia
Some patients with relapsed or treatment-resistant acute myeloid leukemia, a form of blood cancer for which there are few treatments, may achieve remission with an experimental targeted therapy, according to early trial data published online today in Blood, a Journal of the American Society of Hematology (ASH).
3-D skin made of stem cells treats backbone birth defect in rodents
Myelomeningocele is a severe congenital defect in which the backbone and spinal canal do not close before birth, putting those affected at risk of lifelong neurological problems.
Researchers develop new EcoCity model for mitigating urban heat islands
Prof. KUANG Wenhui's group at the Key Laboratory of Land Surface Pattern and Simulation, Institute of Geographic Sciences and Natural Resources Research, has developed the EcoCity model for regulating urban land cover structures and thermal environments, and has established eco-regulation thresholds for urban surface thermal environments.
Living long and living well: Is it possible to do both?
Scientists at the MDI Biological Laboratory in Bar Harbor, Maine, are developing metrics to identify the health markers for old age in the roundworm, C. elegans, a popular model in aging research.
How killer cells take out tumors
The use of immunotherapy to treat cancer is celebrating its first successes -- but there are still many knowledge gaps in the underlying mechanisms of action.
Coming out of their shells
The loss of turtle hard shells at different evolutionary branch points resulted in adaptive changes because of changes in respiration.
Motor-boat noise makes fish bad parents, leading to the death of their babies
The sound of motorboat engines disturbed coral reef fish so acutely it changed the behavior of parents, and stopped male fish properly guarding their young, feeding and interacting with their offspring.
Brain State Technologies: Successful clinical trial shows reduction of insomnia symptoms
A clinical trial has found that HIRREM® closed-loop neurotechnology is more effective than placebo at reducing symptoms of insomnia, and has additional benefits for heart rate and blood pressure regulation.
Tulane researchers help find possible explanation for unparalleled spread of Ebola virus
The world may be closer to knowing why Ebola spreads so easily thanks to a team of researchers from Tulane University and other leading institutions who discovered a new biological activity in a small protein from the deadly virus.
Researchers identify a key controller of biological machinery in cell's 'antenna'
St. Jude Children's Research Hospital discovery of a regulatory enzyme working at the primary cilium could lead to treatments for the brain tumor medulloblastoma.
Promising new treatment option for chronic plaque psoriasis
The study tested the efficacy of tildrakizumab, an antibody that targets only a very specific immune system pathway.
Study proves viability of quantum satellite communications
Researchers in Canada have taken a significant step towards enabling secure quantum communication via moving satellites, as announced by the Canadian Government in April 2017.
Food policies have potential to lower US cardiovascular disease rates
Food policies, such as fruit and vegetable subsidies, taxes on sugar sweetened drinks, and mass media campaigns to change dietary habits, could avert hundreds of thousands of deaths from cardiovascular disease (CVD) in the United States, researchers project in a study published in PLOS Medicine by Jonathan Pearson-Stuttard from the University of Liverpool, UK and Imperial College London, UK, and colleagues at the Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy at Tufts University, US.
New pediatric protocol reduces missed sepsis diagnoses by 76 percent
An electronic sepsis alert using a combination of vital signs, risk factors and physician judgment to identify children in a pediatric emergency department with severe sepsis reduced missed diagnoses by 76 percent.
New way to detect Palmer amaranth in contaminated seedlots
Some seed mixtures planted on Conservation Reserve Program acres have been contaminated with Palmer amaranth, an aggressive weed.
Scientists model gene regulation with chromatin accessibility
Researchers from the Academy of Mathematics and Systems Science (AMSS) of the Chinese Academy of Sciences have teamed up with Stanford University and Tsinghua University scientists to successfully model data on gene regulation with paired expression and chromatin accessibility (PECA) and have developed new tools to infer context-specific regulatory networks.
Dogs help in breast carcinoma research
Cancer of the mammary glands in dogs is very similar to human breast carcinoma.
Brain damage can make sideways faces more memorable, and give us 'emotion blindness'
People with damage to a crucial part of the brain fail to recognize facial emotions, but they unexpectedly find faces looking sideways more memorable researchers have found.
Copaiba: Silver bullet or snake oil?
Sales of the essential oil copaiba are increasing, at least in part, because more than 54 million Americans suffer from some form of arthritis.
New surgical techniques help save patients from life-threatening heart condition
Cardiac surgeons are successfully performing more extensive surgical repairs of type A aortic dissection -- one of the highest risk operations in cardiothoracic surgery.
A novel approach to seeing dengue infection in the body
Positron emission tomography (PET) paired with the glucose metabolism probe, fluorodeoxyglucose (FDG), is considered 'old' technology in the field of cancer.
Older married couples and advance directives
A new study examined the effects spouses had on the decision of older adults to have advance directives.
Community-based testing and treatment program linked with improved viral suppression among HIV-positive
Among individuals with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) in rural Kenya and Uganda, implementation of community-based testing and treatment was associated with an increased proportion of HIV-positive adults who achieved viral suppression, along with increased HIV diagnosis and initiation of antiretroviral therapy, according to a study published by JAMA.
Flu shot less effective for obese adults
Although influenza vaccines are currently the best forms of protection to safeguard people against the flu, they are not effective in all cases.
Cancer cells send signals boosting survival and drug resistance in other cancer cells
Researchers at University of California San Diego School of Medicine report that cancer cells appear to communicate to other cancer cells, activating an internal mechanism that boosts resistance to common chemotherapies and promotes tumor survival.
Genetic study shakes up the elephant family tree
New research reveals that a species of giant elephant that lived 1.5 million to 100,000 years ago -- ranging across Eurasia before it went extinct -- is more closely related to today's African forest elephant than the forest elephant is to its nearest living relative, the African savanna elephant.
The complete epigenomes of the most frequent tumors, unveiled
An IDIBELL research team manages to characterize the complete epigenomes of the most frequent tumors, including those of colon, lung and breast cancer.
Food policies could lower US cardiovascular disease rates
New research conducted by the University of Liverpool and partners shows that food policies, such as fruit and vegetable subsidies, taxes on sugar sweetened drinks, and mass media campaigns to change dietary habits, could avert hundreds of thousands of deaths from cardiovascular disease (CVD) in the United States.
Study identifies an enzyme inhibitor to treat Gulf War illness symptoms
Scientists shed light on the neurological consequences of exposure to low-levels of nerve agents and suggest a drug that could treat some of the toxins' effects.
Invasive alien plant control assessed for the Kruger National Park in South Africa
Along with urban and agricultural encroachment and pollution mitigation, managing invasive alien species is a key intervention needed to protect biodiversity.
Even moderate drinking linked to a decline in brain health, finds study
Alcohol consumption, even at moderate levels, is associated with increased risk of adverse brain outcomes and steeper decline in cognitive (mental) skills, finds a study published by The BMJ today.
Guts to glory?
Newly discovered enzyme complexes in herbivore digestive tracts show promise for sustainable fuels and medicines.
Difficulties diagnosing delirium in older adults after surgery
Experts still don't always agree on delirium symptoms or diagnoses, even when they are assessing the same symptoms in the same people.
Study could help explain link between seizures and psychiatric disorders
In a new study published in Cell Reports, scientists at the Gladstone Institutes identified different types of neurons in a brain region called the reticular thalamus.
Open-source approach provides faster, better solubility predictions
Despite the importance of predicting solubility, it is not an easy matter.
New target found to attack an incurable brain tumor in children
Research shows that a tumor suppressor gene p16 is turned off by a histone mutation (H3.3K27M), which is found in up to 70 percent of childhood brain tumors called diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma (DIPG).
How neurons use crowdsourcing to make decisions
When many individual neurons collect data, how do they reach a unanimous decision?
Why do Antarctic krill stocks fluctuate?
It is only six centimeters long, but it plays a major role in the Antarctic ecosystem: the small crustacean Euphausia superba (Antarctic krill).
New sound diffuser is 10 times thinner than existing designs
The new, 'ultra-thin' sound diffuser is 10 times thinner than the widely used diffusers found in recording studios, concert venues and movie theaters to reduce echoes and improve the quality of sound.
Keeping the hydrogen coming
A coating of molybdenum improves the efficiency of catalysts for producing hydrogen.
Scientists propose new method to correct common power problem in microgrids
Scientists from the Northeastern University, China, have developed a new method to diagnosis a serious electrical problem in microgrids.
Building a better blood-brain barrier model
Investigators at Brigham and Women's Hospital have developed an innovative but easily implemented approach that uses 'spheroids' to mimic the blood-brain barrier more accurately, and appears to overcome several challenges for discovering and advancing new drugs for treating brain conditions.
A star is born: Lesser-known brain cell takes center stage
A new Salk method efficiently grows human astrocytes in a dish, advancing studies of stroke, Alzheimer's and depression.
Ambiguous pledges leave large uncertainty under Paris climate agreement
Emission reduction pledges made by individual countries under the Paris Agreement leave a wide range of possible climate outcomes, according to new research.
Similar lipids cluster in soybean cell membrane model
Researchers have developed a detailed computational model of the soybean plasma membrane that provides new structural insight at the molecular level, which may have applications for studying membrane proteins and may be useful for engineering plants to produce biochemicals, biofuels, drugs and other compounds, and in understanding how plants sense and respond to stressful conditions.
Seeing inside coral
New technologies are making it possible to see inside coral, to examine the skeleton cores for devastation caused by humans.
Research study gives new insight into how cancer spreads
A research study led by University of Minnesota engineers gives new insight into how cancer cells move based on their ability to sense their environment.
Does the sex of a cell matter in research?
A Tulane University endocrinologist co-authored a guide in the latest issue of Cell Metabolism to help scientists who study obesity, diabetes or other metabolic diseases better account for inherent sex differences in research. 
Insomnia associated with increased risk of suicidality
People who suffer from insomnia are three times more likely to report thoughts of suicide and death during the past 30 days than those without the condition, reports a new meta-analysis from researchers at the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania.
Should your primary care physician be a generalist or specialist? New study explores
Recently, researchers studied how seeing a PCP or seeing a specialist for most of an older person's outpatient care (impacted their health outcomes.
Anti-nausea drug could help treat sleep apnea
An old pharmaceutical product may be a new treatment for obstructive sleep apnea, according to new research presented today by University of Illinois at Chicago and Northwestern University scientists at the SLEEP 2017 annual meeting in Boston.
How the Arctic Ocean became saline
The Arctic Ocean was once a gigantic freshwater lake. Only after the land bridge between Greenland and Scotland had submerged far enough did vast quantities of salt water pour in from the Atlantic.

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Krill may be one of the most abundant forms of life on our planet... but it turns out we don't know that much about them. For a create that underpins a massive ocean ecosystem and lives in our oceans in massive numbers, they're surprisingly difficult to study. We sit down and shine some light on these underappreciated crustaceans with Stephen Nicol, Adjunct Professor at the University of Tasmania, Scientific Advisor to the Association of Responsible Krill Harvesting Companies, and author of the book "The Curious Life of Krill: A Conservation Story from the Bottom of the World".