Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

August 15, 2017
Russian scientists deny climate model of IPCC
Scientists from Tomsk Polytechnic University revealed new data on accelerating permafrost degradation in the East Siberian Arctic Shelf, which really threatens by huge emissions of bubble methane into the atmosphere and breaks the climate model of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).

Child's home learning environment predicts 5th grade academic skills
Children whose parents provide them with learning materials like books and toys and engage them in learning activities and meaningful conversations in infancy and toddlerhood are likely to develop early cognitive skills that can cascade into later academic success, finds a new study by NYU's Steinhardt School of Culture, Education, and Human Development.

Understanding alternative reasons for denying climate change could help bridge divide
An early look at ongoing work by a University of Kansas researcher examines alternative reasons for climate change denial, specifically economic, social or cultural influences on why individuals or entire communities remain skeptical of climate change.

Cosmic magnifying lens reveals inner jets of black holes
Jet material ejected from a black hole is magnified in new observations from Caltech's Owens Valley Radio Observatory.

Study examines quality of evidence for drugs granted accelerated FDA approval
Among drugs granted accelerated approval by the FDA in 2009-2013, efficacy was often confirmed in subsequent trials a minimum of three years after approval, and the use of nonrandomized studies and surrogate measures, instead of clinical outcomes, was common, according to a study published by JAMA.

Cell economics 101
Every time we swallow food, cells that line the intestines must step up their activity in a sudden and dramatic manner.

Precision medicine opens the door to scientific wellness preventive approaches to suicide
Researchers have developed a more precise way of diagnosing suicide risk, by developing blood tests that work in everybody, as well as more personalized blood tests for different subtypes of suicidality that they have newly identified, and for different psychiatric high-risk groups.

Study identifies dinosaur 'missing link'
A 'Frankenstein's monster' dinosaur may be the missing link between two major dinosaur groups, plugging what was previously a big gap between them.

Skewing the aim of targeted cancer therapies
The aim of targeted gene-based cancer therapies could often be skewed from the start.

Same-sex couples do not influence their adoptive children's gender identity
There is no major difference in the gender identity development of children raised by same-sex parents compared to those adopted by heterosexual couples.

Clinical appearance and unusual imaging findings of pediatric ketamine overdose
Case report on a 10-month-old infant who inadvertently ingested ketamine.

Frogs that adapt to pesticides are more vulnerable to parasites
Amphibians can evolve increased tolerance to pesticides, but the adaptation can make them more susceptible to parasites, according to a team that includes researchers at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.

Chapman University Publishes research on substance use among transgender students in California
Chapman University has published research on substance abuse among transgender students in California.

Atomically thin layers bring spintronics closer to applications
University of Groningen scientists led by physics professor Bart van Wees have created a graphene-based device, in which electron spins can be injected and detected with unprecedented efficiency.

High-quality online video with less rebuffering
In experiments, Pensieve could stream video with 10 to 30 percent less rebuffering than other approaches, and at levels that users rated 10 to 25 percent higher on key 'quality of experience' metrics.

How a nutrient, glutamine, can control gene programs in cells
Researchers show that an intracellular metabolite of glutamine, alpha-ketoglutarate, plays a role in regulating cellular differentiation programs by changing the DNA-binding patterns of the transcription factor CTCF and by altering genome interactions.

A metabolic treatment for pancreatic cancer?
Pancreatic cancer is now the third leading cause of cancer mortality.

Deep-UV probing method detects electron transfer in photovoltaics
EPFL scientists have developed a new method to efficiently measure electron transfer in dye-sensitized transition-metal oxide photovoltaics.

Eating habits affect skin's protection against sun
Sunbathers may want to avoid midnight snacks before catching some rays.

Mystery of 8,500-year-old copper-making event revealed through materials science
Stone Age metallurgical 'slag' from Turkey -- once thought to be the earliest known example of copper smelting in western Eurasia -- now re-identified as incidentally fired green copper pigment.

Study: Long-term testosterone therapy improves urinary, sexual function and quality of life
A new study shows a significant improvement in both sexual and urinary function as well as quality of life for hypogonadal men who undergo long-term testosterone replacement therapy.

Development of local food systems help bridge gap among people with different views
Work by a University of Kansas researcher shows that the development of local food systems in Kansas and Missouri could help bridge ideological gaps, especially as the process of sharing sustainable farming knowledge.

NASA spots Typhoon Banyan's large eye
Typhoon Banyan's eye became visible again in satellite imagery from NASA-NOAA's Suomi NPP satellite.

Violence against women in resource-limited settings: A WHO behavioral intervention
A randomized controlled trial has shown that a brief behavioral treatment delivered by community lay workers significantly reduced psychological distress in women exposed to gender-based violence.

Don't get mad -- it's only a game!
Feelings can run high in competitive situations and lead to heated arguments and disputes.

Changes to high-risk medical devices often supported by low-quality research
Clinical trials that test changes in the design or use of high-risk medical devices are often poorly designed, and can rely on inadequate or potentially biased data, according to a new study by researchers at the UC San Francisco and Yale School of Medicine.

Plant-produced polio vaccines could help eradicate age old disease
Plants have been used to produce a new vaccine against poliovirus in what is hoped to be a major step towards global eradication of the disease.

Intensive lifestyle intervention provides modest improvement in glycemic control, reduced need for medication
A high amount and intensity of exercise along with a diet plan resulted in a modest reduction in blood glucose levels among adults with type 2 diabetes, but was accompanied by reductions in the use of glucose-lowering medications, according to a study published by JAMA.

Gaining distribution in small retail formats bring big payoffs even for major brands
Small formats like Save-A-Lot and Aldi and neighborhood stores like Target Express have been growing recently in popularity in the US and around the world.

Kansas well owners, non-well owners have different watering routines during droughts
A University of Kansas researcher who examines water conservation policy and the habits of well owners in Kansas found that well owners are more likely to found that well ownership is significantly correlated to increased watering during droughts.

Adult brains produce new cells in previously undiscovered area
A University of Queensland discovery may lead to new treatments for anxiety, depression and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

Will ketamine treat your depression? Check your activity monitor
During a depressive episode, people often report having reduced energy, feeling slowed down and having reduced interest in activities.

Relativistic self-focusing gives mid-IR driven electrons a boost
For the first time, scientists have observed the production of relativistic electrons driven by low-energy, ultrashort mid-infrared laser pulses.

What does it take to thrive in elite sports?
Those at the top of their sporting game put their heart and soul into doing their best, but new research has shed light on why thriving at elite sports is far more complex than it appears.

Now you can levitate liquids and insects at home
Levitation techniques are no longer confined to the laboratory thanks to University of Bristol engineers who have developed an easier way for suspending matter in mid-air by developing a 3-D-printed acoustic levitator.

Adding silicon to soil to strengthen plant defenses
Researchers from the University of Delaware have joined a team from Western Sydney University in Australia to examine the addition of silicon to the soil in which plants are grown to help strengthen plants against potential predators.

Lower-quality studies often used to support changes to high-risk medical devices
Among clinical studies used to support FDA approval of high-risk medical device modifications, fewer than half were randomized, blinded, or controlled, according to a study published by JAMA.

Human intrusion on fruit bat habitats raises exposure risk to Hendra virus in Australia
There is a rising risk of human and domestic animal exposure to deadly Hendra virus (HeV) carried by fruit bats in Eastern Australia due to human intrusion into their habitats, human proximity to woodlands and vegetation loss, a new study reveals.

Tracking a solar eruption through the solar system
Ten spacecraft, from ESA's Venus Express to NASA's Voyager-2, felt the effect of a solar eruption as it washed through the solar system while three other satellites watched, providing a unique perspective on this space weather event.

Prematurity leaves distinctive molecular signature in infants' cerebellum
Premature birth, which affects one in 10 US babies, is associated with altered metabolite profiles in the infants' cerebellum, the part of the brain that controls coordination and balance, a team led by Children's National Health System clinician-researchers report Aug.

Scientists identify gene that controls immune response to chronic viral infections
Researchers from the University of Chicago identify a gene that helps some people and animals fend off persistent viral infections.

Liquid biopsies find distinct genomic profiles in most patients with carcinoma of unknown primary
Next-generation sequencing of circulating tumor DNA identified distinct genomic profiles with potentially targetable alterations in 99.7 percent of patients with carcinoma of unknown primary who have detectable alterations.

Study reveals seven complete specimens of new flower, all 100 million years old
A Triceratops or Tyrannosaurus rex bulling its way through a pine forest likely dislodged flowers that 100 million years later have been identified in their fossilized form as a new species of tree.

Partial eclipse of the sun visible across UK
If the weather is good, viewers across the UK will be treated to a partial solar eclipse on Aug.

Transporting spin: A graphene and boron nitride heterostructure creates large spin signals
Graphene Flagship scientists based at the University of Groningen, The Netherlands, have created a device based on a blilayer of graphene and boron nitride which shows unprecedented spin transport efficiency at room temperature.

Rhapsody in red violet
A new study conducted at the Weizmann Institute of Science, published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, USA, has now opened the way to numerous potential uses of betalains, the highly nutritious red-violet and yellow pigments known for their antioxidant properties and commonly used as food dyes.

Signs of distracted driving -- pounding heart, sweaty nose
Distracted driving -- texting or absent-mindedness -- claims thousands of lives a year.

The key to drought-tolerant crops may be in the leaves
Scientists at the University of Southern California and Texas A&M University are exploring how to generate plants that are more drought-resistant as the water supplies decline in major agricultural states.

How tolerance for incivility affects political participation
Those with higher tolerance for incivility are more likely to comment on political news stories, engage in online political discussions, express support for candidates on social media and donate to campaigns.

Precarious 'flexible work' affects over 4 million people in UK -- far more than just zero hours
Analysis of EU survey data suggests millions in UK may suffer anxiety as a result of unpredictable management-imposed flexible working hours.

Soft and spherical: Researchers study dynamics of drop impact
Within the study of fluid dynamics, the effect of curved, convex or compliant surfaces on the dynamics of impacting drops is still relatively unknown, despite its extreme relevance to modern-day applications, such as 3-D ink-jet printing and the delivery of pesticides on leaves.

Look ma, no hands: Researchers use vacuum for hands-free patterning of liquid metal
North Carolina State University engineers have utilized vacuum to create a more efficient, hands-free method for filling complex microchannels with liquid metal.

Epigenetic drugs show promise as antivirals
Some epigenetic pharmaceuticals have the potential to be used as broad spectrum antivirals, according to a study reported in a recent issue of the journal mBio.

Study gives first proof that the Earth has a natural thermostat
New data provides the first proof that the Earth has a natural thermostat which enables the planet to recover from extremes of climate change -- but the recovery timescales are significant.

How decision-making habits influence the breast cancer treatments women consider
A new study finds that more than half of women with early stage breast cancer considered an aggressive type of surgery to remove both breasts.

Nanotechnology gives green energy a green color
Solar panels have tremendous potential to provide affordable renewable energy, but many people see traditional black and blue panels as eyesores.

Marijuana use amongst youth stable, but substance abuse admissions up
While marijuana use amongst youth remains stable, youth admission to substance abuse treatment facilities has increased, according to new research from Binghamton University, State University of New York.

California demand for primary care providers to exceed supply by 2030
California is expected to face a statewide shortfall of primary care providers in the next 15 years, with acute shortages in the Central Valley, Central Coast and Southern Border areas, due to the uneven distribution of care across the state, according to a report released Aug.

Evolved masculine and feminine behaviors can be inherited from social environment
The different ways men and women behave, passed down from generation to generation, can be inherited from our social environment -- not just from genes, experts have suggested.

New Machine Learning program shows promise for early Alzheimer's diagnosis
A new machine learning program developed by researchers at Case Western Reserve University appears to outperform other methods for diagnosing Alzheimer's disease before symptoms begin to interfere with every day living, initial testing shows.

A new method for the 3-D printing of living tissues
Scientists at the University of Oxford have developed a new method to 3-D-print laboratory- grown cells to form living structures.

Artificial blood vessels mimic rare accelerated aging disease
Biomedical engineers have grown miniature human blood vessels using stem cells taken from patients with an extremely rare genetic disease called progeria that causes symptoms resembling accelerated aging in children.

Electroconvulsive therapy for depression in older patients may not relieve their insomnia
Older people receiving electroconvulsive therapy for their depression likely will need an additional treatment if insomnia is one of their symptoms, researchers report.

Genome sequencing method can detect clinically relevant mutations using 5 CTCs
Whole genome sequencing using long fragment read (LFR), a technology that can analyze the entire genomic content of small numbers of cells, detected potentially targetable mutations using only five circulating tumor cells (CTCs) in a patient with metastatic breast cancer.

Mercury is altering gene expression
Mercury causes severe neurological disorders in people who have consumed highly contaminated fish.

Detecting a concealed weapon or threat is not easy, even for experienced police officers
Terrorist attacks and bombings at concerts, sporting events and airports underscore the need for accurate and reliable threat detection.

Chewing gum rapid test for inflammation
A research team from the University of Würzburg presents this novelty in the journal Nature Communications.

Monash helps address superbug resistance with Phage therapy
International research involving a Monash biologist shows that bacteriophage therapy -- a process whereby bacterial viruses attack and destroy specific strains of bacteria -- can be used successfully to treat systemic, multidrug resistant bacterial infections.

David Attenborough gains new species namesake
A new species of damselfly from the Cretaceous period has been named after the iconic naturalist and TV presenter Sir David Attenborough.

Two new beetle genera and 4 new species from the Australopacific in a new monograph
Amid his ongoing revisionary work on a number of hister beetle genera, the Slovakian-born entomologist and Alexander von Humboldt Foundation researcher Dr.

Understanding antibiotic resistance
Boston College researchers have uncovered new insights into how bacteria respond to stress.

Compounds in desert creosote bush could treat giardia and 'brain-eating' amoeba infections
Researchers at Skaggs School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences at University of California San Diego and the University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus have found that compounds produced by the creosote bush, a desert plant common to the Southwestern United States, exhibit potent anti-parasitic activity against the protozoa responsible for giardia infections and an amoeba that causes an often-lethal form of encephalitis.

Immigrant detention centers referred to as family centers, but resemble prisons
University of Kansas researchers in interviews with attorneys found immigrant detention complexes function like jails and prisons.

New genomic insights reveal a surprising two-way journey for apple on the Silk Road
New research out of Boyce Thompson Institute reveals surprising insights into the genetic exchange along the Silk Road that brought us the modern apple.

New device for refined neural recording in mice could transform dementia research
NC3Rs funding for interdisciplinary research which combines electrical engineering and neurophysiology has resulted in a new product for brain recordings in mice that avoids many of the welfare concerns associated with existing approaches.

Meta-analysis evaluates the effect of post-primary PCI Bivalirudin I
A study has examined the efficacies of various post-percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) bivalirudin doses on net adverse clinical events (NACEs) and mortality.

An immune signaling pathway for control of Yellow Fever Virus infection
Princeton University researchers have uncovered a critical role for a new immune signaling pathway in controlling infection by the flavivirus Yellow Fever Virus (YFV).

Why durian is the smelly 'king of fruits' (video)
Durian, known as the king of fruits, is eaten all over southeast Asia.

'Organismic learning' mimics some aspects of human thought
A new computing technology called 'organismoids' mimics some aspects of human thought by learning how to forget unimportant memories while retaining more vital ones.

Therapeutic fusion protein could mitigate blood vessel damage from cardiovascular disease
Scientists from Boston Children's Hospital Vascular Biology Program have revealed an engineered fusion protein that could recover blood vessel health following the onset of hypertension, atherosclerosis, stroke, heart attack, and other cardiovascular diseases.

Unique imaging of a dinosaur's skull tells evolutionary tale
Researchers using Los Alamos' unique neutron-imaging and high-energy X-ray capabilities have exposed the inner structures of the fossil skull of a 74-million-year-old tyrannosauroid dinosaur nicknamed the Bisti Beast in the highest-resolution scan of tyrannosaur skull ever done.

Climate change projected to significantly increase harmful algal blooms in US freshwaters
Harmful algal blooms known to pose risks to human and environmental health in large freshwater reservoirs and lakes are projected to increase because of climate change, according to a team of researchers led by a Tufts University scientist.

Archeologists uncover new economic history of ancient Rome
University of South Florida researchers are the first to successfully excavate the Roman villa of Durreueli at Realmonte, located off the southern coast of Sicily.

NASA, ESA spacecraft track solar storm through space
Using seven spacecraft, along with computer models, scientists have pieced together the journey of a coronal mass ejection from the Sun outward to Mars, Comet 67P, Jupiter and even the New Horizons spacecraft now beyond Pluto.

A moth and its flame: Mate selection found to evolve from response to flower odors
For the first time, Jothi Yuvaraj and colleagues at Lund University, Sweden, have identified the corresponding pheromone receptors (PRs) from a primitive leafminer moth, called Eriocrania semipurpurella.

Does intracranial pressure monitoring improve outcomes in severe traumatic brain injury?
A new study has shown that use of intracranial pressure (ICP) monitoring in patients with severe traumatic brain injury (TBI) was associated with a significant decrease in mortality, but it did not improve the rate of favorable outcomes.

Evidence does not support the use of gabapentinoids for chronic low back pain
Existing evidence on the use of gabapentinoids in chronic low back pain (CLBP) is limited, and demonstrates significant risk of adverse effects with no benefits on pain relief, according to a meta-analysis published in PLOS Medicine by Harsha Shanthanna from McMaster University, Canada, and colleagues.

Which research results in mice will help humans with MS? Now there's a way to tell
University at Buffalo researchers have developed and successfully tested a method for determining how relevant to the human disease findings are from mouse models.

White matter connectome with cortical lesion map clarifies temporal auditory comprehension
An article published online August 3, 2017 by Brain reports a novel mapping methodology adapted for stroke brains at the Medical University of South Carolina.

Development of nanosensor capable of detecting herbicide and its target enzyme binding
Livia F. Rodrigues and the Nanoneurobiophysics research group from the Federal University of São Carlos, Sorocaba, SP, Brazil, have published their studies on nanomechanical sensing possibilities in NANO: Brief Reports and Reviews.

Smartphone app may help older adults manage serious mental illness and chronic health conditions
The use of new technologies in geriatric psychiatry shows promise for advancing personalized medicine and improving patient care.

NASA's GPM found Gert strengthening into a hurricane
NASA looked at the rainfall rates within Tropical Storm Gert as it continued to strengthen and found the most intense rainfall on the tropical cyclone's eastern side.

How friction evolves during an earthquake
Using high-speed photography and digital image correlation techniques, engineers show that friction along a faultline has a complex evolution during an earthquake that is dictated, in part, by slip velocity: the sliding of the two sides of the fault against one another.

New thruster design increases efficiency for future spaceflight
Hall thrusters are used in earth-orbiting satellites and show promise to propel robotic spacecraft long distances, and the plasma ejected from the exhaust end of the thruster can deliver great speeds.

Empowering patients effectively improves physician hand hygiene
Armed with new tools, patients and parents felt empowered to remind healthcare providers to perform hand hygiene, successfully improving compliance rates, but just over half of physicians felt that patients should be reminding providers, according to a new study published in the August issue of the American Journal of Infection Control, the official journal of the Association for Professionals in Infection Control and Epidemiology (APIC).

'Accelerated approval' drugs: How well are they studied?
In a recent study published in JAMA, researchers at Brigham and Women's Hospital and the London School of Economics and Political Science examined the pre-approval and post-approval clinical trials of drugs granted FDA Accelerated Approval between 2009 and 2013.

NIAID herpesvirus study in mice leads to discovery of potential broad-spectrum antiviral
NIAID scientists studying herpes simplex virus infection have unexpectedly found that inhibiting a cellular enzyme complex, EZH2/1, suppresses viral infection.

UCI study uncovers possible roots of schizophrenia
An abundance of an amino acid called methionine, which is common in meat, cheese and beans, may provide new clues to the fetal brain development that can manifest in schizophrenia, University of California, Irvine pharmacology researchers report in the journal Molecular Psychiatry.

Gaining influence over others does not increase autonomy
Moving up the greasy pole in the office does not make people feel more personally free, new research has shown. 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