Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

July 11, 2017
Ancient Greek theaters used moveable stages more than 2,000 years ago
Theater has been loved by many people since classical times.

Thinking thin brings new layering and thermal abilities to the semiconductor industry
The concept of a simple technique to remove thin layers from otherwise thick, rigid semiconductor crystals has been actively explored for years.

Eye-dwelling bacteria help mice fight off invading pathogens
The surface of the eye is one of the most inhospitable environments for microbes in mammals because tears are loaded with anti-microbials.

Preclinical results support entinostat's role in targeting the tumor microenvironment
Syndax Pharmaceuticals, Inc. ('Syndax,' the 'Company' or 'we') (Nasdaq:SNDX), a clinical stage biopharmaceutical company developing entinostat and SNDX-6352 in multiple cancer indications, in collaboration with The Wistar Institute and Indiana University Melvin and Bren Simon Cancer Center, today announced the publication of a preclinical report demonstrating that entinostat, Syndax's oral, Class-I histone deacetylase inhibitor, enhances the antitumor effect of PD-1 (programmed death receptor-1) blockade through the inhibition of myeloid derived suppressor cells (MDSCs).

Researchers identify visual system changes that may signal Parkinson's disease
Changes in the visual systems of newly diagnosed Parkinson's disease patients may provide important biomarkers for the early detection and monitoring of the disease, according to a new study.

Does the European public understand the impacts of climate change on the ocean?
A new in-depth study of the European public's awareness of the impacts of climate change on the ocean shows that although many are relatively well informed, an alarming number remain either uninformed or misinformed.

Pulse rate monitoring before a C-section can improve maternal health
Doctors often prescribe preventative drugs to women who are to receive spinal blocks while giving birth via a Caesarean section.

Neural stem cells steered by electric fields in rat brain
Electric fields can be used to guide neural stem cells transplanted into the brain towards a specific location.

Imaging reveals how well PTSD patients will respond to psychotherapy, researchers find
A pair of studies led by researchers at the Stanford University School of Medicine demonstrates that scientists can predict, with a high degree of accuracy, which patients with post-traumatic stress disorder will respond to a method of psychotherapy often used to treat the condition.

Live-in grandparents helped human ancestors get a safer night's sleep
A sound night's sleep grows more elusive as people get older.

Even droplets sometimes take the stairs
Sometimes, liquid drops don't drop. Instead, they climb. Using computer simulations, researchers have now shown how to induce droplets to climb stairs all by themselves.

Engineering professor proposes bold concept for solving great barrier reef bleaching
A green, low-cost solution for the coral bleaching crisis -- one of the unfortunate consequences of global warming -- is proposed by a University of Arizona engineering professor known for developing innovations for solving infrastructure renewal challenges.

USPSTF recommendation regarding behavioral counseling for cardiovascular disease prevention
The US Preventive Services Task Force recommends that primary care professionals individualize the decision to offer or refer adults without obesity who do not have high blood pressure, abnormal cholesterol or blood sugar levels or diabetes to behavioral counseling to promote a healthful diet and physical activity.

Academic motivation suffers when economic mobility seems out of reach
New studies from Northwestern University show that high school and college students from low socioeconomic status (SES) backgrounds are much less motivated to overcome academic hardships when they have doubts about the likelihood of people from their backgrounds achieving upward mobility.

Future materials are becoming 'topological'
Researchers from CIC nanoGUNE, Stanford University and the University of California, Berkeley experimentally developed the so-called 'Quantum Spin Hall' effect in a 2-D material.

Generous people live happier lives
Generosity makes people happier, even if they are only a little generous.

UCI study sheds light on regulation of hair growth across the entire body
To paraphrase the classic poem, no hair is an island entire of itself.

Accessing DNA in the cell's powerhouse to treat disease
For the first time, a synthetic compound has been made that can bind to DNA in the cells' energy powerhouses, suppressing a gene associated with nerve and muscle disease.

Benefits of using Droplet Digital PCR for measuring immunotherapy response highlighted in presentations at 2017 ASCO Annual Meeting
Researchers presented evidence of clinical potential for how circulating tumor DNA, measured by ddPCR, could be used as a biomarker to identify pseudoprogression and measure early indicators of response in immuno-oncology therapies.

Prosthetic knee type may determine cost of care for amputees
In a new study published in Prosthetics and Orthotics International, Mayo Clinic researchers describe the direct medical costs of falls in adults with a transfemoral amputation.

Risk-reducing mastectomy questioned for BRCA mutation carriers with prior ovarian cancer
For the subset of women with BRCA mutations who have already had ovarian cancer, risk-reducing mastectomy might not be worth the price tag.

Study of premature babies has implications for future treatment
Study of premature babies has implications for future treatment Research carried out by the University of Kent with doctors on the neonatal unit at the William Harvey Hospital and Brunel University have provided further insight into the biology of premature birth, with findings that may have implications for treating premature babies.

Caregiving needs increase as older adults approach the end of life
Dying adults in the United States have 2.5 people assisting them, on average, according to a new study.

Marine vessels are unsuspecting hosts of invasive species
A new Tel Aviv University study finds that ships play an unknowing but dominant role in introducing and dispersing tough-shelled non-indigenous organisms into new environments.

Collagen controlling the thickness and juvenile state of skin
Type XVII collagen (COL17) is found to regulate the proliferation of epidermal cells and therefore the thickness of juvenile and aged skin, suggesting COL17 can potentially be used for future anti-aging strategies.

In rats that can't control glutamate, cocaine is less rewarding, staving off relapse
Rats missing a neuroreceptor that controls the release of the neurotransmitter glutamate are less amenable to the rewarding effects of cocaine, increasing their chance of kicking the habit once addicted, researchers from the US National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) find.

Groundwater pumping drying up Great Plains streams, driving fish extinctions
Groundwater pumping from the the High Plains Aquifer has led to long segments of rivers drying up and the collapse of large-stream fishes.

PTSD may be physical and not only psychological
The part of the brain that helps control emotion may be larger in people who develop post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) after brain injury compared to those with a brain injury without PTSD, according to a study released today that will be presented at the American Academy of Neurology's Sports Concussion Conference in Jacksonville, Fla., July 14 to 16, 2017.

Preeclampsia: New study documents its enormous economic and health burden
Rates of preeclampsia are rising rapidly, yet surprisingly there are few national estimates of the health and economic impact of preeclampsia on mothers and their infants.

British Asian students more likely to receive negative media coverage
Media outlets continue to differentiate between British East Asian students and East Asian students in the UK education system, portraying the former in a negative, undesirable light, a new study in the Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies reveals.

Experimental 'enhancer' drug may boost conventional therapies for deadly pediatric brain cancers
Laboratory studies suggest that an experimental drug already in early clinical trials for a variety of adult cancers might enhance radiation and chemotherapy for two childhood brain cancers that currently are virtually always fatal.

Barrier to autoimmune disease may open door to HIV, study suggests
Researchers from the University of Colorado School of Medicine have discovered that a process that protects the body from autoimmune disease also prevents the immune system from generating antibodies that can neutralize the HIV-1 virus.

Warmer Arctic linked to weaker vegetation growth in North America
An international team of researchers led by Jong-Seong Kug at Pohang University of Science and Technology (POSTECH) has shown that the warmer Arctic has triggered cooler winters and springs in North America, which has in turn weakened vegetation growth and lowered carbon uptake capacity in its ecosystems.

Intervention associated with reduced disrespect and abuse during childbirth in Tanzania
An intervention aimed at community and healthcare facility stakeholders was associated with a reduction in the prevalence of disrespect and abuse seen during childbirth in Tanzania, according to a new study published in PLOS Medicine by Stephanie Kujawski from Columbia University, USA, and colleagues.

Ants build sinking Eiffel Towers when trying to escape
Fire ants use their bodies to construct Eiffel Tower-looking structures when they run into a tall obstruction while looking for food or escaping to new areas.

Contaminants in food: Identifying and assessing risks as early as possible
Dioxins, mineral oils, perfluorinated substances - people do not only obtain important nutrients with their food.

News laser design offers more inexpensive multi-color output
A new Northwestern University study has engineered a more cost-effective laser design that outputs multi-color lasing and offers a step forward in chip-based lasers and miniaturization.

NASA found heavy rainfall in Hurricane Eugene
When Hurricane Eugene was nearing its peak, NASA analyzed the storm's heavy rainfall over the open waters of the Eastern Pacific Ocean.

NRL scientists find high prevalence of antibiotic resistance in Kenya
Antibiotic resistance is one of the most significant global public health problems in many developing countries.

Insect 'anti-antiaphrodisiac' tells males when females are ready to mate
Researchers have identified a pheromone released by female insects after mating that tells males exactly when they are ready to mate again.

Researchers describe novel reporter proteins for long term expression of therapeutic genes
A new study showed that the expression levels of a novel secreted reporter protein delivered to an immunosuppressd large animal model could be detected for several months after infusion into the liver, demonstrating the potential to monitor the effectiveness of delivery and ongoing expression of a therapeutic gene.

How cells control nuclear size becomes clearer
Over a century since scientists first observed that cells and their nucleus grow at a constant ratio, we are now closer to finding out how.

Method determines cell age more accurately, could help elderly patients
Researchers are reporting progress in developing a method to accurately determine the functional age of cells, a step that could eventually help clinicians recommend ways to delay some health effects of aging and potentially improve treatments.

Simulating splash at the microscopic level
Spray cooling is one of the most promising methods for cooling high heat flow electronics.

Spiky ferrofluid thrusters can move satellites
Once launched into low-Earth orbit, a small satellite needs propulsion.

Breakthrough tool predicts properties of theoretical materials
UNC Eshelman School of Pharmacy used data on approximately 60,000 unique materials from the National Institute of Standards and Technology's Inorganic Crystal Structure Database to create a new methodology they call Properties Labeled Materials Fragments.

Bacteria on surfaces -- strength of adhesion does not depend on size of contact area
Scientists at Saarland University have developed a method with which they can measure the contact area between a bacterium and the surface it is 'sitting' on.

Warm winter events in Arctic becoming more frequent, lasting longer
Arctic winter warming events -- winter days where temperatures peak above 14 degrees Fahrenheit (minus 10 degrees Celsius) -- are a normal part of the climate over the ice-covered Arctic Ocean.

Immune system may keep body from neutralizing HIV-1 virus
Researchers at the University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus have discovered that a process protecting the body from autoimmune disease appears to prevent it from creating antibodies that can neutralize the HIV-1 virus, a finding that could possibly help lead to a vaccine that stimulates production of these antibodies.

Squeezing innovation out of the NASA Twins study: Pipetting and cell isolation in space
NASA is evaluating more efficient research techniques to prepare for the journey to Mars.

Faster diagnosis of inherited and lethal nerve disease could advance search for new treatments
Johns Hopkins physicians report success in a small study of a modified skin biopsy that hastens the earlier diagnosis of an inherited and progressively fatal nerve disease and seems to offer a clearer view of the disorder's severity and progression.

Eye microbiome trains immune cells to fend off pathogens
Bugs in your eyes may be a good thing. Resident microbes living on the eye are essential for immune responses that protect the eye from infection, new research shows.

Hospital management practices may put women at risk for C-sections during childbirth
The way certain hospital labor and delivery units are managed may put healthy women at greater risk for cesarean deliveries and hemorrhage, according to a new study from Harvard T.H.

ECDC report: 10-fold increase of hepatitis E cases in the EU/EEA in the last 10 years
The incidence of hepatitis E virus (HEV) infection has been steadily increasing across the countries of the European Union and European Economic Area (EU/EEA) with 21 081 cases reported in the EU/EEA over the last decade.

Coffee bubble phobia may be deep-seated aversion to parasites
Some people experience intense aversion and anxiety when they see clusters of roughly circular shapes, such as the bubbles in a cup of coffee or the holes in a sponge.

Lip-syncing Obama: New tools turn audio clips into realistic video
A new AI tool developed by University of Washington computer vision researchers can create realistic videos from audio files alone -- including speeches by President Obama.

Easter Island not victim of 'ecocide', analysis of remains shows
Analysis of remains found on Rapa Nui, Chile (Easter Island) provides evidence contrary to the widely-held belief that the ancient civilization recklessly destroyed its environment, according to new research co-conducted by faculty at Binghamton University, State University of New York.

Treatment rapidly reverses the effect of blood thinner dabigatran
A new treatment rapidly removes the oral blood thinner dabigatran (PRADAXA®) from circulation within minutes, allowing life-saving clots to form normally.

Scientists upgrade database tracking global temperatures across millennia
A new version of an international climate database first released in 2013 includes more records that further confirm the disturbing rise in the Earth's temperatures.

Researchers at UIC identify master molecule behind corneal inflammation
Researchers at the University of Illinois at Chicago have identified an enzyme present in the cornea that becomes dramatically upregulated and triggers inflammation during and even after a herpes virus infection has cleared.

How dragon blood could save your life (video)
Chemists have found potential drugs and other really useful compounds in some truly bizarre places in nature.

Warm winter events in the Arctic are becoming more frequent, lasting longer
A new study analyzing winter air temperatures over the Arctic Ocean from 1893 to 2017 shows that since 1980, an additional six Arctic winter warming events are occurring each winter at the North Pole and these events are lasting about 12 hours longer, on average.

Key immunological mechanism for regulating intestinal flora discovered
Researchers at the Hospital del Mar Medical Research Institute (IMIM) have shown for the first time that immunoglobulin M, secreted by the human intestine, plays a key role in maintaining the diversity of intestinal flora by including and maintaining microorganisms that are beneficial to our health.

Women and men may have different bipolar disorder biomarkers
Men and women react differently to compounds associated with immune system response to bipolar disorder, according to an international team of medical researchers.

Signature analysis of single molecules using their noise signals
Japanese researchers obtain unique noise signatures from single molecules interacting with carbon nanotube-based electronic devices.

UF Health researchers find genetic factors that cause muscle weakness, wasting disorder
For years, the underlying process that causes a debilitating muscle disorder in infants and young children has been largely unknown.

IU, Regenstrief study: Early home health worker visit lowers risk of hospital readmission
A visit by a home health worker, such as a nurse or physical therapist, within a week of an older adult's discharge from a skilled nursing facility appears to lower the risk of hospital readmission within 30 days by nearly half according to a new Indiana University Center for Aging Research and Regenstrief Institute study.

'Big Muddy' Missouri river needs a plan
As the Missouri River flows across the Great Plains to where it meets the Mississippi River at St.

Depression affects the brains of males and females differently
Depressed adolescents were exposed to happy or sad words and their brains imaged.

Antibiotics taken late in pregnancy can increase risk for IBD in offspring
A study by researchers at the University of Chicago Medicine shows that when mice that are genetically susceptible to developing inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) were given antibiotics during late pregnancy and the early nursing period, their offspring were more likely to develop an inflammatory condition of the colon that resembles human IBD.

The most effective individual steps to tackle climate change aren't being discussed
Governments and schools are not communicating the most effective ways for individuals to reduce their carbon footprints, according to new research.

Alien ice on Earth
A flash of green laser followed by pulses of X-rays, and mere nanoseconds later an extraterrestrial form of ice has formed.

UNU report focuses on ties between financial sector and modern slavery
A UN University report released today finds that the financial sector has a number of underutilized tools at its disposal to disrupt funds generated by human trafficking and modern slavery.

Better than Star Wars: Chemistry discovery yields 3-D table-top objects crafted from light
A scientist's childhood dream of 3-D projections like those he saw in a Star Wars movie has led to development of new technology for making animated 3-D table-top objects by structuring light, says chemist Alexander Lippert, Southern Methodist University, Dallas.

Use of osteoporosis drug with anti-inflammatory medication linked to lower risk of hip fracture
Among older patients using medium to high doses of the anti-inflammatory steroid prednisolone, treatment with the osteoporosis drug alendronate was associated with a significantly lower risk of hip fracture, according to a study published by JAMA.

Insurance coverage for CT colonography increases likelihood of screening
People with insurance policies that cover CT colonography for colorectal cancer screening are almost 50 percent more likely to get screened than those whose policies don't cover the procedure, according to a new study.

Study compares switching meds vs. an additional med for patients unresponsive to an antidepressant
Among patients unresponsive to an antidepressant medication, adding the antipsychotic aripiprazole modestly increased the likelihood of remission from depression compared to switching to the antidepressant bupropion, according to a study published by JAMA.

Making telescopes that curve and twist
A new tool for computational design allows users to turn any 3-D shape into a collapsible telescoping structure.

Botanists discover hundreds of species of fungi in deep coral ecosystems
Botanists from the University of Hawai'i at Mānoa have discovered hundreds of potentially new species of fungi in the deep coral ecosystem in the 'Au'au channel off Maui, Hawai'i.

Economic issues are key to predicting whether students will graduate college, study shows
Economic issues play a significant role in determining whether first-time students enrolling in a four-year college will complete their degree and graduate within six years.

JFK's back problems -- a new look
JFK promoted an image of himself as a young, healthy, strong-bodied man.

Opioid tapering may improve outcomes for chronic pain sufferers
Below please find summaries of new articles that will be published in the next issue of Annals of Internal Medicine.

A new system to estimate the duration of a walk in the countryside
Researchers from the University of Seville have developed a new system to estimate the time that it takes to do a walk in the countryside.

High burden of traumatic brain injuries in the EU and China
Traumatic brain injury (TBI) is a serious public health threat contributing to mortality and morbidity around the world, according to two studies published in PLOS Medicine that quantify the burden of TBI on the populations of Europe and China, respectively.

Cannibal cells may limit cancer growth
New research led by scientists at the Babraham Institute, Cambridge reveals a link between cell cannibalism and cancer biology.

PAINS-killer: UNC study finds serious issues with popular drug screening tool
A widely used screening tool deployed in the early phases of drug discovery to weed out undesirable compounds is wrong so often it can't be trusted on its own, according to scientists at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

The fork in the road to DNA repair
Japanese researchers from Osaka University have uncovered a way in which our cells regulate the repair of broken DNA. 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