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Science Current Events and Science News | Brightsurf | June 26, 2017


Could humans ever regenerate a heart? A new study suggests the answer is 'yes'
A new study's findings point to potential for tweaking communication between human genes and advancing our ability to treat heart conditions and stimulate regenerative healing.
Moisture-responsive 'robots' crawl with no external power source
Using an off-the-shelf camera flash, researchers turned an ordinary sheet of graphene oxide into a material that bends when exposed to moisture.
Where are the new therapies for heart disease?
Despite dramatic reductions in the death rate from cardiovascular disease, which includes heart disease and stroke, it remains the leading causes of death, and experts have expressed concern that the number of new therapies coming to market has lagged.
Computer model simulates sense of touch from the entire hand
Neuroscientists from the University of Chicago have developed a computer model that can simulate the response of nerves in the hand to any pattern of touch stimulation on the skin.
Twitter-monitoring system detects riots far quicker than police reports
Social media can be an invaluable source of information for police when managing major disruptive events, new research from Cardiff University has shown.
Childhood asthma may lead to thickening of left ventricle in adulthood
Young adults with a history of asthma are at a greater risk of thickening of the left ventricle, which can cause shortness of breath, chest pain, fainting, and eventually lead to heart failure, according to research published today in JACC: Heart Failure.
'Own-point-of-view' video method leverages power of perception to improve emergency care
The 'own-point-of-view' perspective video technique, coupled with a subjective re situ interview, provides a better understanding of how physicians make clinical decisions in an authentic treatment setting, compared with the conventional external perspective.
Alzheimer's disease risk linked to a network of genes associated with myeloid cells
Mount Sinai researchers find this network central to Alzheimer's disease susceptibility.
Gene mutation linked to retinitis pigmentosa in Southwestern US Hispanic families
Thirty-six percent of Hispanic families in the U.S. with a common form of retinitis pigmentosa got the disease because they carry a mutation of the arrestin-1 gene, according to a new study from researchers at The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth) School of Public Health.
Scientists find clever way to help you de-clutter your home
If your attic is full of stuff you no longer use but can't bear to give away, a new study may offer you a simple solution.
Premature infants at greater risk of SIDS
Premature infants still have a greater risk compared to full-term babies of dying of SIDS and other sleep-related infant deaths despite recommendations from the American Academy of Pediatrics that hospital NICU's provide more safe infant sleep education to parents before they go home.
A little place for my stuff
Just as people endlessly calculate how to upsize or downsize, bacteria continually adjust their volume (their stuff) to fit inside their membrane (their space).
3-D printing with living tissues may help treat joint diseases
Degeneration of cartilage and other joint tissues is a major cause of disability.
Microscope can scan tumors during surgery and examine cancer biopsies in 3-D
A new UW microscope could provide accurate real-time results during cancer-removal surgeries, potentially eliminating the 20 to 40 percent of women who have to undergo multiple lumpectomy surgeries because cancerous breast tissue is missed the first time around.
Drones that drive
Being able to both walk and take flight is typical in nature many birds, insects, and other animals can do both.
Regular brisk walks and a daily longer one help lower office workers' blood lipids
A recent study from New Zealand's University of Otago shows for the first time that taking 2-minute brisk walks every 30 minutes and a half-hour walk each day reduces blood lipid levels when measured in response to a meal consumed around 24 hours after starting the activity.
One billion suns: World's brightest laser sparks new behavior in light
Using the brightest light ever produced on Earth, University of Nebraska-Lincoln physicists have changed the way light behaves.
New tool offers snapshots of neuron activity
A team of MIT and Stanford University researchers has developed a way to label neurons when they become active, essentially providing a snapshot of their activity at a moment in time.
Why don't my document photos rotate correctly?
KAIST team developed a technique that can correct a phone's orientation by tracking the rotation sensor in a phone.
NASA sees quick development of Hurricane Dora
The fourth tropical cyclone of the Eastern Pacific Ocean season formed on June 25 and by June 26 it was already a hurricane.
The beach time capsule
And to think it was all right there in her garage.
Mount Sinai researcher identifies best practices for cochlear implant hearing preservation
Findings could transform treatment worldwide and enhance patient care.
Integrated medical records can reduce disparities between blacks and whites in HIV care
A streamlined and integrated method of tracking medical records called a laboratory health information exchange narrowed the gap in anti-retroviral therapy and viral suppression between HIV-positive blacks and whites.
Young American Latinos report the most discrimination
Although the United States has seen a dramatic increase in Mexican and Latin American immigrants since 1970, a recent study by Penn State researchers is one of the few where perceived discrimination is examined in this population.
Formation of artificial cells with a skeletal support reinforcement to withstand application realized
A research group of Tokyo University of Agriculture and Technology, Tokyo Institute of Technology, Keio University and Tohoku University have successfully developed an artificial cytoskeletal structure for cell models (liposomes or artificial cells) using DNA nanotechnology, and demonstrated that liposomes with the cytoskeletal structure were almost as strong as living cells.
Glycans as biomarkers for cancer?
Glycosylated proteins are often overexpressed in tumor cells and thus could serve as tumor markers, especially those with the interesting molecule sialic acid as their sugar moiety.
Could this strategy bring high-speed communications to the deep sea?
A new strategy for sending acoustic waves through water could potentially open up the world of high-speed communications to divers, marine research vessels, remote ocean monitors, deep sea robots, and submarines.
Ultrasound imaging of the brain and liver
Ultrasound is commonly used in diagnostic imaging of the body's soft tissues, including muscles, joints, tendons and internal organs.
Significant racial disparities persist in hospital readmissions
A new study in the journal Health Affairs shows that, despite being designed to more effectively manage care and control costs, black patients enrolled with Medicare Advantage are far more likely to be readmitted to the hospital after a surgery than those enrolled on traditional Medicare.
New tool to identify and control neurons
One of the big challenges in the Neuroscience field is to understand how connections and communications trigger our behavior.
Beyond bananas: 'Mind reading' technology decodes complex thoughts
This latest research led by CMU's Marcel Just builds on the pioneering use of machine learning algorithms with brain imaging technology to
When kids talk to robots: Enhancing engagement and learning
Conversational robots and virtual characters can enhance learning and expand entertainment options for children, a trio of studies by Disney Research shows, though exactly how these autonomous agents interact with children sometimes depends on a child's age.
Magnetic implants used to treat 'dancing eyes'
A UCL-led research team has successfully used magnets implanted behind a person's eyes to treat nystagmus, a condition characterized by involuntary eye movements.
Is there an association between socioeconomic status in childhood and the heart?
Socioeconomic inequalities are a public health challenge in cardiovascular disease and a new study published by JAMA Pediatrics examined the association of childhood family socioeconomic status in youth on measures of left ventricular mass and diastolic function 31 years later in adulthood.
Taking pictures of sentimental goods may help people declutter, donate more
The cure for a cluttered home might be just a snapshot away.
Large-scale production of living brain cells enables entirely new research
Important pieces of the puzzle to understand what drives diseases such as Alzheimer's and Parkinson's are still missing today.
Pulling the tablecloth out from under essential metabolism
Most organisms share the biosynthetic pathways for making crucial nutrients because it is is dangerous to tinker with them.
Regulating the indirect land use carbon emissions imposes high hidden costs on fuel
Biofuel policies like the Low-Carbon Fuel Standard in California are trying to minimize the indirect land use change related emissions by accounting for the indirect land use change factor as part of the carbon emissions per gallon of biofuels.
Cedars-Sinai team develops risk assessment score to predict, help prevent sudden cardiac arrest
A Cedars-Sinai Heart Institute investigator and his team have developed a new risk assessment tool that brings physicians closer to predicting who is most likely to suffer a sudden cardiac arrest, a condition that is fatal in more than 90 percent of patients.
Study highlights need for education and training to help human trafficking victims
According to the US Department of Health & Human Services, human trafficking is a public health concern and often a crime that impacts individuals, families and entire communities across generations.
Cancer hijacks natural cell process to survive
Cancer tumours manipulate a natural cell process to promote their survival suggesting that controlling this mechanism could stop progress of the disease, according to new research led by the University of Oxford.
New insights into the toxin behind tetanus
Tetanus toxin is the neurotoxin that causes lockjaw. Many are vaccinated, but tetanus still kills tens of thousands of people per year worldwide.
Monitoring changes in wetland extent can help predict the rate of climate change
Monitoring changes to the amount of wetlands in regions where permafrost is thawing should be at the forefront of efforts to predict future rates of climate change, new research shows.
Novel viral vectors deliver useful cargo to neurons throughout the brain and body
Caltech team develops new viral vectors for efficiently delivering genes to neurons throughout the body and across the blood-brain barrier
Characterizing the mouse genome reveals new gene functions and their role in human disease
The first results from a functional genetic catalogue of the laboratory mouse has been shared with the biomedical research community, revealing new insights into a range of rare diseases and the possibility of accelerating development of new treatments and precision medicine.
Diabetes may have important effects in patients with acute heart failure
Researchers have found that patients with acute heart failure and diabetes, compared with those without diabetes, have distinct markers related to inflammation, cardiovascular function, and kidney health.
Previously unknown extinction of marine megafauna discovered
Over two million years ago, a third of the largest marine animals like sharks, whales, sea birds and sea turtles disappeared.
People living at home with dementia at risk of potentially dangerous antipsychotic usage
Physicians are still prescribing off-label antipsychotics to help families manage the behavioral and psychologic symptoms of dementia (BPSD) -- potentially unaware these medications drive mortality rates 1.6 times higher in elderly people with dementia.
New gonorrhea treatment targets enzyme needed for respiration
Researchers have identified a possible new treatment for gonorrhea, using a peptide that thwarts the infection-causing bacterium by interfering with an enzyme the microbe needs to respirate.
Study: Most families in low-income countries don't have soap at home
Study -- the first to systematically measure handwashing in so many countries -- highlights the need to improve access to soap, along with handwashing behavior in general, in many impoverished countries.
Talking science
In 22 years, Karin Heineman has been behind the camera for hundreds of scientific stories.
Discovery of a new mechanism for bacterial division
EPFL scientists show how some pathogenic bacteria -- such as the mycobacteria that cause tuberculosis -- use a previously unknown mechanism to coordinate their division.
Endocrine Society issues Scientific Statement on obesity's causes
A new Scientific Statement issued by the Endocrine Society calls for more research aimed specifically at understanding the underlying mechanisms that make it difficult to maintain long-term weight loss.
Gays and lesbians who feel supported are more certain about retirement prospects
Gay men and Lesbians who don't feel socially supported feel less secure about their retirement than heterosexual adults, a study from the University of Waterloo has found.
Early cardiology care linked to lower risk of stroke in patients with atrial fibrillation
The risk of stroke was significantly reduced in patients newly diagnosed with a heart condition known as atrial fibrillation who received early care from a cardiologist, according to a study by researchers at the Stanford University School of Medicine.
Readily available drug cocktail can help prevent sepsis shock and death
Even in advanced medical settings, sepsis is still very dangerous and accounts for over 400,000 deaths annually in the US alone.
Review: Insomnia medication may wake up some patients from vegetative state
A systematic review of zolpidem for noninsomnia neurological disorders, including movement disorders and disorders of consciousness, finds reason for additional research.
Study: Lack of sleep + spat with spouse = potential health problems
A lack of sleep can certainly lead to crankiness and a spat with your spouse, but new research shows that if it happens consistently, it could take a serious toll on your health.
100 years on from the Russian revolution -- special report
The long shadows that Russia's 1917 revolution cast on freedoms globally is the subject of a new special report in Index on Censorship Magazine.
Study reveals mysterious equality with which grains pack it in
For the first time, researchers have been able to test a theory explaining the physics of how substances like sand and gravel pack together, helping them to understand more about some of the most industrially processed materials on the planet.
Ultra-compact phase modulators based on graphene plasmons
ICFO researchers achieve light phase modulation with a footprint 30 times smaller than the light wavelength.
Combination approach improves power of new cancer therapy
An international research team has found a way to improve the anti-cancer effect of a new medicine class called 'Smac mimetics.'
Neuron-integrated nanotubes to repair nerve fibers
Carbon nanotubes exhibit interesting characteristics rendering them particularly suited to the construction of special hybrid devices -- consisting of biological issue and synthetic material -- planned to re-establish connections between nerve cells, for instance at spinal level, lost on account of lesions or trauma.
Steelhead trout population declines linked with poor survival of young fish in the ocean
Researchers find declining survival of juvenile steelhead trout in the ocean is strongly coupled with significant declines in populations of wild and hatchery steelhead in the Pacific Northwest
2-D material's traits could send electronics R&D spinning in new directions
Researchers created an atomically thin material at Berkeley Lab and used X-rays to measure its exotic and durable properties that make it a promising candidate for a budding branch of electronics known as 'spintronics.'
Belief in free will predicts criminal punishment support, disapproval of unethical actions
In countries with transparent governments and low levels of corruption, the belief in free will -- that is, believing that people's outcomes are tied to choices and personal responsibility -- predicts someone's intolerance of unethical behavior along with a greater desire to see criminals harshly punished for their actions.
Peanut family secret for making chemical building blocks revealed
The peanut and its kin -- legumes -- have not one, but two ways to make the amino acid tyrosine.
UA researchers: Brains evolved to need exercise
Mounting scientific evidence shows that exercise is good not only for our bodies, but for our brains.
Mitochondrial flash signals long-term memory at neuronal synapse
A collaborative study led by Dr. BI Guoqiang at University of Science and Technology of China of Chinese Academy of Sciences and Dr.
New method to rapidly map the 'social networks' of proteins
Salk scientists improved upon a classic approach to mapping the interactions between proteins.
Alzheimer's gene associated with failure to adapt to cognitive challenge in healthy adults
Healthy adults carrying the gene APOE4 -- the strongest known genetic risk factor for Alzheimer's disease (AD) -- may struggle to adapt their brain activity to increasing cognitive demands as they get older, according to a study published in The Journal of Neuroscience.
Dementia patients may die sooner if family caregivers are mentally stressed
Patients with dementia may actually die sooner if their family caregivers are mentally stressed, according to a new study from the University of California, Berkeley.
Physician heal thyself: Simple coping strategies for pervasive physician burnout
The proverb, 'physician heal thyself,' is probably more relevant today than it was in biblical times with the fast pace of life, the impact of multitasking and the unending bombardment of information, which have made emotional exhaustion almost certain.
Amazon basin deforestation could disrupt distant rainforest by remote climate connection
The ongoing deforestation around the fringes of the Amazon may have serious consequences for the untouched deeper parts of the rainforest.
Septic systems are a major source of emerging contaminants in drinking water
A new analysis shows that septic systems in the United States routinely discharge pharmaceuticals, consumer product chemicals, and other potentially hazardous chemicals into the environment.
Collapse of the European ice sheet caused chaos
Scientists have reconstructed in detail the collapse of the Eurasian ice sheet at the end of the last ice age.
Imprecise iron supplementation can spur increase in Salmonella
Individuals who do not produce enough iron are anemic, and often experience fatigue.
Hot cities spell bad news for bees
A new study from North Carolina State University finds that common wild bee species decline as urban temperatures increase.
Are activity monitors fit for exercise research? Getting there, but further steps needed
Activity monitors or fitness trackers are fun and informative gadgets to help track daily physical activity.
Catalyst for genetic kidney disease in black people identified
Between 15 and 20 percent of black people carry a genetic mutation that puts them at risk for certain chronic kidney disease, but only about half of them develop the illness -- a variance that long has puzzled researchers.
New research could help humans see what nature hides
Things are not always as they appear. New visual perception research at The University of Texas at Austin, published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, explains the natural limits of what humans can see and how to find what nature hides.
Scientists use algorithm to peer through opaque brains
A new algorithm helps scientists record the activity of individual neurons within a volume of brain tissue.
Using 'sticky' nanoparticles, researchers develop strategy to boost body's cancer defenses
In the journal Nature Nanotechnology, University of North Carolina Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center researchers report on strides made in the development of a strategy to improve the immune system's detection of cancer proteins by using 'sticky' nanoparticles.
Novel platform uses nanoparticles to detect peanut allergies
A team of chemical and biomolecular engineers at the University of Notre Dame have developed a novel platform to more accurately detect and identify the presence and severity of peanut allergies, without directly exposing patients to the allergen.
Thwarting metastasis by breaking cancer's legs with gold rods
Your cancer has metastasized. No one wants to ever hear that.
Greater muscle strength -- better cognitive function for older people
Greater muscle strength is associated with better cognitive function in ageing men and women, according to a new Finnish study.
Panda love spreads to benefit the planet
Loving pandas isn't just a feel-good activity. Recent Michigan State University (MSU) work shows China's decades of defending panda turf have been good not just for the beloved bears, but also protects habitat for other valuable plants and animals, boosts biodiversity and fights climate change.
Study reveals how sex 'blindspot' could misdirect medical research
The sex of animals frequently has an effect in biomedical research and therefore should be considered in the study of science, report scientists from the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute and the International Mouse Phenotyping Consortium.
The brain's fight and flight responses to social threat
A study published in eNeuro exploring the neural correlates of the 'fight-or-flight' response finds that people who choose to flee perceive a greater threat, which leads them to mentally and behaviorally disengage from the situation.
Study: Exposure to light causes emotional and physical responses in migraine sufferers
This research found that light makes migraine headaches more painful and induces negative emotions and unpleasant physical sensations.
How to stay sane when your child can't sleep
Your child's sleep problems may be making you depressed and unsure of your parenting skills, says a new paper by UBC sleep expert and nursing professor Wendy Hall.
Natural health product regulation in Canada needs to go further to protect consumers
Health Canada's proposed changes to natural health product regulation are a good step forward, but they need to go further to protect consumers, argues Dr.
Study describes changes to structural brain networks after radiotherapy for brain tumors
Researchers compared the thickness of brain cortex in patients with brain tumors before and after radiation therapy was applied and found significant dose-dependent changes in the structural properties of cortical neural networks, at both the local and global level.
Study details evidence for past large earthquakes in the Eastern Tennessee seismic zone
The Eastern Tennessee Seismic Zone (ETSZ), a zone of small earthquakes stretching from northeastern Alabama to southwestern Virginia, may have generated earthquakes of magnitude 6 or greater within the last 25,000 years, according to a study published June 27 in the Bulletin of the Seismological Society of America.
Researchers chart pathway to 'rejuvenating' immune cells to fight cancers and infections
St. Jude Children's Research Hospital discovery of the mechanism of T cell exhaustion will lead to treatments to enhance immunotherapies against cancers and such viruses as HIV.
Does socioeconomic status affect women's decisions not to continue breastfeeding?
A new study has shown that among women who intended to breastfeed, nearly 25 percent of those defined as socioeconomically (SE) marginalized stopped after only one month, compared to about 7 percent of the women in the SE privileged group.
Mechanism shown to reverse disease in arteries
A certain immune reaction is the key, not to slowing atherosclerosis like cholesterol-lowering drugs do, but instead to reversing a disease that gradually blocks arteries to cause heart attacks and strokes.
Eating more vegetable protein may protect against early menopause
Results of a new study from epidemiologists at the University of Massachusetts Amherst and Harvard T.H.
Fatality rates are high within 2 years of drug-induced liver injury
Most patients suffering liver toxicity due to medications or herbal or dietary supplements recover from the acute liver injury without long-term problems, but some do not survive the injury or they require liver transplantation.
Fluid in the knee holds clues for why osteoarthritis is more common in females
Researchers have more evidence that males and females are different, this time in the fluid that helps protect the cartilage in their knee joints.
Early antiretroviral therapy linked with bone loss in patients with HIV
Current HIV treatment guidelines now recommend initiating antiretroviral treatment (ART) at the time of diagnosis.
How AI helped auction off $19 billion worth of radio spectrum
Mobile phone carriers scooped up airwaves no longer needed by television broadcasters last March in a $19 billion auction designed by UBC and Stanford University researchers.
Mitochondria targeting anti-tumor compound
Researchers from Kumamoto University in Japan have found that the compound folic acid-conjugated methyl-BETA-cyclodextrin (FA-M-BETA-CyD) has significant antitumor effects on folate receptor-ALPHA-expressing (FR-ALPHA (+)) cancer cells.
How many adverse events are reported to FDA for cosmetics, personal care?
A new research letter published by JAMA Internal Medicine examines adverse events for cosmetics and personal care products in the US Food and Drug Administration's Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition's Adverse Event Reporting System (CFSAN), a repository made publically available in 2016.
Topsy-turvy motion creates light switch effect at Uranus
A Georgia Tech study suggests Uranus' magnetosphere, the region defined by the planet's magnetic field and the material trapped inside it, gets flipped on and off like a light switch every day as it rotates along with the planet.
Biodiversity loss from deep-sea mining will be unavoidable
Biodiversity losses from deep-sea mining are unavoidable and possibly irrevocable, an international team of scientists, economists and lawyers argue.
Vinegar: A cheap and simple way to help plants fight drought
Researchers at the RIKEN Center for Sustainable Resource Science (CSRS) have discovered a new, yet simple, way to increase drought tolerance in a wide range of plants.
Report reveals improvements and persistent inequities in college access and success in NYC
A new report from the Research Alliance for New York City Schools provides an in-depth look at high school students' pathways into and through college, revealing large improvements in college access, but also highlighting persistent differences in outcomes for historically underrepresented groups of students.
New study links hot flashes with depression
With age comes a greater risk of depression, especially in women.
Taking photos of experiences boosts visual memory, impairs auditory memory
A quick glance at any social media platform will tell you that people love taking photos of their experiences -- whether they're lying on the beach, touring a museum, or just waiting in line at the grocery store.
Different origins of Cu-Pb-Zn-bearing and W-bearing granites
The source of granite is crucial for its metallogenic specialization.
Medicaid restrictions linked to increased late-stage breast cancer diagnoses
Women in Tennessee who were diagnosed with breast cancer were more likely to be diagnosed with late stage disease after a substantial rollback of Medicaid coverage for adults in the state, according to a new analysis.
Rising seas could result in 2 billion refugees by 2100
In the year 2100, 2 billion people -- about one-fifth of the world's population -- could become climate change refugees due to rising ocean levels.
Chimpanzee 'super strength' and what it might mean in human muscle evolution
For years, anecdotes and some studies have suggested that chimpanzees are 'super strong' compared to humans, implying that their muscle fibers are superior to humans'.
Creating a personalized, immersive audio environment
The way you hear and interpret the sounds around you changes as you move.
Cloning thousands of genes for massive protein libraries
Discovering the function of a gene requires cloning a DNA sequence and expressing it.
Stanford scientists create a cellular guillotine for studying single-cell wound repair
In an effort to understand how single cells heal, mechanical engineer Sindy Tang developed a microscopic guillotine that efficiently cuts cells in two.
Hunting microbes or smelling poison: A matter of evolution
Mammals possess several lines of defense against microbes. One of them is activated when receptors called Fprs bind to specific molecules that are linked to pathogens.
Why social isolation can bring a greater risk of illness
Social isolation in the fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster, leads to sleep loss, which in turn leads to cellular stress and the activation of a defense mechanism called the unfolded protein response.
Air pollution casts shadow over solar energy production
Global solar energy production is taking a major hit due to air pollution and dust.
Cosmetic complaints climb but products still on market
A new Northwestern Medicine study reports consumer complaints more than doubled for cosmetic products from 2015 to 2016, with hair care products being the biggest offender.
Hydraulic fracturing rarely linked to felt seismic tremors
New research suggests hydraulic fracturing and saltwater disposal has limited impact on seismic events.
Detecting diluteness
Engineers at Washington University in St. Louis and Princeton University developed a new way to dive into the cell's tiniest and most important components.
New class of 'soft' semiconductors could transform HD displays
New research by Berkeley Lab scientists could help usher in a new generation of high-definition displays, optoelectronic devices, photodetectors, and more.
Ten million tonnes of fish wasted every year despite declining fish stocks
Industrial fishing fleets dump nearly 10 million tonnes of good fish back into the ocean every year, according to Sea Around Us research.
Skin cell model advances study of genetic mutation linked to heart disease, stroke risk
Using a new skin cell model, researchers have overcome a barrier that previously prevented the study of living tissue from people at risk for early heart disease and stroke.
NAWI Graz researchers measure light fields in 3-D
Researchers from TU Graz and the University of Graz present the new method of 3-D-plasmon tomography in Nature Communications.
Microplastics from the washing machine
Billions of pieces of plastic are floating in the oceans.
Predicting future outcomes in the natural world
When pesticides and intentional fires fail to eradicate an invasive plant species, declaring biological war may be the best option.

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