Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

September 26, 2017
Fisheries sustainability linked to gender roles among traders
A new WCS study, published in the journal Ecosystem Health and Sustainability, of fish traders in coastal Kenya shows that women largely occupied fisheries with the lowest profits and are not saving money while working in these fisheries.

Older drivers adapt their thinking to improve road hazard detection
A recent study finds older drivers adapt their responses in heavy traffic to better identify road hazards.

Scientists recalibrate the traditional Chinese Solar Terms with big meteorological data
The 24 Solar Terms (24-STs) is one of the most popular elements in Chinese culture invented by their ancestors some 3,000 years ago.

Patients who get opioids in the ER are less likely to use them long-term
Compared to other medical settings, emergency patients who are prescribed opioids for the first time in the emergency department are less likely to become long-term users and more likely to be prescribed these powerful painkillers in accordance with The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines.

The 3-D selfie has arrived
Computer scientists at the University of Nottingham and Kingston University have solved a complex problem that has, until now, defeated experts in vision and graphics research.

Novel route to polyamide 6: Catalytic oxidation of cyclohexane with ferrocene in ionic liquid medium
Polyamide (PA) 6 is widely used in several industries and therefore economically very important.

Serum Institute's vaccine demonstrates significant efficacy against severe rotavirus
Results from a Phase 3 efficacy study in India of the Serum Institute of India Pvt.

Caribbean spiders named for Barack Obama, Bernie Sanders David Bowie, and others
A new paper published in the Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society has identified and named 15 new species of spider in the Caribbean.

Drug combo gangs up to take on triple-negative breast cancer
In the hunt for novel treatments against an aggressive form of breast cancer, researchers combined a new protein inhibitor with a chemotherapy drug to create a powerful combination that resulted in cancer cell death.

UA Cancer Center team identifies a switch that may help target dormant cancer cells
Cells can enter a dormant state called quiescence, and dormant cancer cells are resistant to chemotherapy and other treatments.

Discovery: Bernie Sanders spider
Students and a scientist at the University of Vermont have discovered 15 new species of 'smiley-faced' spiders -- and named them after, among others, David Attenborough, Barack Obama, Michelle Obama, Leonardo DiCaprio, and Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders.

The drying of peatlands is reducing bird diversity
A recent international study indicates that the populations of peatland birds in Finland, Sweden, Norway, Estonia and Latvia have decreased by a third during the past three decades.

NASA satellite temperatures reveal a stronger Hurricane Lee
NASA's Aqua satellite peered into Hurricane Lee with infrared light to determine if the storm was intensifying.

Predatory bacteria found in study of cystic fibrosis patients' lung microbiome
Cystic fibrosis patients have a wide variety of bacteria in their lungs, including two 'predators' not detected before, according to a new study of lung microorganisms published this week in mBio®, an online open-access journal of the American Society for Microbiology.

Poll: Majority of Americans support legalization of sports betting
A majority of Americans polled say they support the legalization of gambling on professional sports and although illegal in most states, one in five fans has placed a bet on pro sports.

Applying research advances to improve cardiovascular health in women
Cardiovascular disease remains the main cause of death among women, but evidence-based advances are enhancing clinical care in seven key areas, improving the lives of women living with and at risk for heart disease.

Influence of C-section, formula feeding and antibiotics on infant gut microbiome
Researchers characterize the combined influence of cesarean delivery, antibiotic treatment, and formula feeding on the development of gut microbiota in infants.

New payment models for radiation therapy should consider impact of behavioral health costs
Efforts to develop new payment models in radiation oncology also should consider measures to address behavioral health to reduce the total cost of care during and after radiotherapy, according to the results of study performed by researchers at Mayo Clinic and presented today at the 59th Annual Meeting of the American Society for Radiation Oncology in San Diego.

DNA-level biomarker can predict overall survival for rare brain tumors
MGMT promoter methylation status -- information gathered at a DNA-level -- can help predict overall survival for patients with a rare form of brain cancer known as anaplastic astrocytoma, according to a new analysis from The Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center - Arthur G.

Pigeons better at multitasking than humans
Pigeons are capable of switching between two tasks as quickly as humans -- and even more quickly in certain situations.

Understanding football violence could help the fight against terror
Football has long been tarnished by outbreaks of fan violence.

Preschool teachers need better training in science
Preschool instructors appear to lack the knowledge, skills and confidence to effectively teach their young students science -- a problem that is likely contributing to America's poor global performance in this crucially important subject.

Research led by PPPL provides reassurance that heat flux will be manageable in ITER
A new article describes a simulated prediction of divertor heat flux that ITER will be able to tolerate.

Postpartum depression risk, duration and recurrence
Postpartum affective disorder (AD), including postpartum depression (PPD), affects more than one in two hundred women with no history of prior psychiatric episodes, and raises the risk of later affective disorder for those women, according to a new study published in PLOS Medicine by Marie-Louise Rasmussen from Statens Serum Institut, Denmark, and colleagues.

A beautiful wing design solution inspired by owl feathers
Lehigh University researchers have formulated a mathematical solution that could help minimize noise, maximize aerodynamics in design of porous airfoils (2-D wings) to improve wind turbines and air vehicles.

Larger-dose opioid prescriptions not coming from emergency departments, study shows
Opioid prescriptions from the emergency department (ED) are written for a shorter duration and smaller dose than those written elsewhere, shows new research led by Mayo Clinic.

Discovering potential therapeutic protein inhibitors for Chagas disease
Scientists at Tokyo Institute of Technology (Tokyo Tech), Nagasaki University have identified four potential protein inhibitors and unlocked drug discovery strategies for the treatment of Chagas disease by using advanced three-dimensional computer simulation by supercomputer TSUBAME in combination with in vitro experiments and X-ray crystallography.

How forest fires spoil wine
If wine is cultivated where forest fires occur more often, such as in Australia or Italy, aromas that make the alcoholic drink unpalatable can develop in the finished product.

Agent Orange still linked to hormone imbalances in babies in Vietnam, study suggests
Exposure to Agent Orange sprayed during the Vietnam War has been linked to increased levels of certain hormones in women and their breastfeeding children decades later, potentially putting them at higher risk of health problems, according to a new study in Science of the Total Environment.

Antibiotics warranted for kids with minor staph infections
The overuse of antibiotics has left some doctors questioning whether to give such drugs to children diagnosed with uncomplicated Staphylococcus aureus (staph) infections.

Doctors gain a greater understanding of skin cancer using tattoos
Cancer is on the rise and the need to be empathetic when giving a patient their diagnosis and throughout treatment is imperative.

Notre Dame cancer researchers publish new papers on ovarian cancer tumor growth
Two papers involving ovarian cancer research at the University of Notre Dame's Harper Cancer Research Institute (HCRI), one featuring new research and the other a review article, were published as cover stories in their respective journals.

Percent of teens who report having had a concussion in their lifetime
In a survey that included more than 13,000 adolescents, about 20 percent reported at least one diagnosed concussion during their lifetime, and 5.5 percent reported being diagnosed with more than one concussion, according to a study published by JAMA.

How has society adapted to hurricanes? A look at New Orleans over 300 years
In the midst of an intense hurricane season, a historical perspective published in WIREs Climate Change looks at adaptation to hurricanes in New Orleans over nearly three centuries, from its foundation in 1718 to Hurricane Katrina in 2005.

A new role for insulin as a vital factor in maintaining stem cells
When large amounts of insulin are around, stem cells retain their ability to make all the cell types in the body.

'Hypermutators' drive pathogenic fungi to evolve more rapidly
For nearly two decades, a rare but potentially deadly fungus called Cryptococcus deuterogattii has gained a foothold in the Pacific Northwest and Vancouver Island.

Need for enhanced nursing and post-acute transitional care models for rising obesity levels
Elderly, chronically ill people experience frequent changes in health status that require transitions among health care providers and settings.

Gender, racial, and ethnic disparities persist in academic emergency medicine
Gender, racial, and ethnic disparities, with regard to academic rank and compensation, continue to exist among academic emergency medicine physicians in spite of a move by leading organizations of emergency medicine to prioritize increasing diversity.

New approaches in targeted cancer therapy
In a large-scale testing procedure, scientists from Cologne University Hospital have explored the effects of more than 1,500 substances on different kinds of cancer cells.

Large increase in rate of death from chronic respiratory diseases
Between 1980 and 2014, the rate of death from chronic respiratory diseases, such as COPD, increased by nearly 30 percent overall in the US, although this trend varied by county, sex, and chronic respiratory disease type, according to a study published by JAMA.

Portland State study links cancerous toxins to cannabis extract
Researchers at Portland State University found benzene and other potentially cancer-causing chemicals in the vapor produced by butane hash oil, a cannabis extract.

Genetic factors may explain most of risk for autism spectrum disorder
Reanalysis of data from a previous study on the familial risk of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) estimates the heritability to be 83 percent, suggesting that genetic factors may explain most of the risk for ASD, according to a study published by JAMA.

Genetic testing helps set safe dose of common blood thinner
A new study led by Washington University School of Medicine in St.

School, health and behavior suffer when children have TV, video games in bedroom
A new Iowa State University study is one of the first to demonstrate the consequences of allowing children to have a TV or video game system in their bedroom.

Amount of water in stem cells can determine its fate as fat or bone
Adding or removing water from a stem cell can change the destiny of the cell to either pre-fat cells or pre-bone cells, researchers have discovered in a new study published in PNAS.

Two Caribbean bird-catcher trees named after 2 women with overlooked botanical works
Known for their biodiversity richness, the Caribbean Islands are now adding two new species of bird-catcher trees to their list of botanical treasures.

General practitioners' home visit habits determine where patients die
The more a general practitioner prioritizes home visits to patients in general, the greater the likelihood that the doctor's most ill patients will die at home.

Genetic testing can help determine safest dose of blood thinner
A new study finds that genetic testing can help determine the safest dose of the blood thinner warfarin, with fewer side effects, in patients having joint replacement surgery.

New system proposed for logging physician experience in robotic surgeries
Loyola Medicine physicians have proposed a simple new system to improve the reporting of robotic surgeries performed by surgeons in training.

No evidence of hidden hearing loss from common recreational noise
The first study to look for a causal relationship between recreational noise exposure and auditory function in humans finds that while hearing is temporarily affected in young adults after attending a loud recreational event, there is no evidence of auditory nerve injury or permanent hearing difficulties.

Interventions for reducing hepatitis C infection in people who inject drugs
The first global review to quantify the impact of needle syringe programmes (NSP) and opioid substitution treatment (OST) in reducing the risk of becoming infected with the hepatitis C virus is published in Cochrane Library Drug and Alcohol Review Group and the journal Addiction.

Russian scientist finds a new way to predict cancer development
Aleksey V. Belikov, a scientist from the MIPT Laboratory of Innovative Medicine and Agrobiotechnology, used the publicly available data on 20 million cancer cases and examined 16 probability distributions, finding that the incidence of 20 most prevalent cancer types in relation to patients' age closely follows the Erlang probability distribution, which is widely used in telecommunications for incoming call simulations.

Hip osteoarthritis: Severe occupational strain increases the risk
People who in the course of their work put long-term physical strain on their bodies have an increased risk of developing osteoarthritis of the hip.

Arthritis advocates urge Congress to take action to address drug costs, access issues
Physician and healthcare professional advocates from the American College of Rheumatology are joined by rheumatology patients on Capitol Hill this week to urge lawmakers to address the significant drug cost and access issues affecting millions of Americans living with arthritis and other rheumatologic diseases.

Physicists achieve rapid magnetic switching with lasers
An Osaka University-led research group use an advanced synchrotron measurement system to probe how laser pulses affect the magnetism of ferrimagnetic materials of different compositions.

A little tension yields enormous solar crystals
New evidence of surface-initiated crystallization may improve the efficiency of printable photovoltaic materials.

Drought -- a cause of riots
UNIGE, in partnership with the universities of Heidelberg and Lucerne, has verified the possibility of a relationship between periods of drought and rioting.

A fresh set of eyes: Rotating plant inspectors reduces risk of medical device recalls
More frequent rotation of plant inspectors at medical device manufacturing facilities could benefit consumers and lead to fewer product recalls.

Satellite shows Pilar reduced to remnants
Tropical Depression Pilar weakened to a remnant low pressure area as it continued to crawl north along the west coast of Mexico.

Teachers report weaker relationships with students of color, children of immigrants
The relationship between teachers and students is a critical factor for academic success.

Restoring breathing capacity in Duchenne muscular dystrophy by activating the brain
New research published in the Journal of Physiology today suggests that enhancing breathing via the brain may limit deficiencies in respiratory capacity in Duchenne muscular dystrophy patients.

Milk-alternative drinks do not replace the iodine in cows' milk
Consumers of milk-alternative drinks may be at of risk iodine deficiency, according to the findings of a new study in the British Journal of Nutrition.

Improving weather forecasting with a new IASI channel selection method
With the advent of satellite observation techniques and improvements in data assimilation schemes, the initial state in an NWP (numerical weather prediction) model has become more realistic, which is fast becoming the most vital part in the process.

Post-heart attack: How can scar tissue be turned back into healthy heart muscle?
Heart disease continues to be the leading cause of death worldwide, partly due to limited therapeutic options and the heart's inability to regenerate healthy cells called cardiomyocytes after heart attacks.

Warming climate could increase bacterial impacts on Chesapeake Bay shellfish, recreation
Researchers have found that three common species of Vibrio bacteria in Chesapeake Bay could increase with changing climate conditions by the end of this century, resulting in significant economic and healthcare costs from illnesses caused by exposure to contaminated water and consumption of contaminated shellfish.

Potential Zika vaccine protects against pregnancy transmission and testicular damage
For the first time, a collaborative team led by The University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston has shown that a potential Zika vaccine quickly can protect fetuses against infection as well as protect males against testicular infection and injury.

A record number of Americans viewed the 2017 solar eclipse
Eighty-eight percent of American adults viewed the August total solar eclipse directly or electronically.

Injection alternative
MIT researchers have created a computer model that can predict how glucose-responsive insulin will affect patients' blood sugar based on chemical traits such as how quickly it becomes activated in the presence of glucose.

New study funded points to unexpected benefits of rabies vaccination in dogs
The rabies vaccine is extremely effective at preventing this fatal disease in dogs, but new research, funded by Morris Animal Foundation, shows the vaccine may have a positive impact on overall canine health as well, and is associated with a decrease in death from all causes.

Committee aims to facilitate more expeditious design and conduct of nephrology clinical trials
The American Society of Pediatric Nephrology established a Therapeutics Development Committee to forge more effective public-private partnerships and to outline strategies to design and carry out pediatric nephrology clinical trials more expeditiously and effectively.

Bacterial outer membrane vesicles: An emerging tool in vaccine development
Outer membrane vesicles, biological nanoparticles shed during normal growth by bacteria, have seen significant recent advances in engineering and are thus finding new utility as therapeutic and drug delivery agents.

NASA satellite data shows Hurricane Maria's strongest side
NASA's Aqua satellite provided an infrared look at Hurricane Maria's cloud top temperatures and found the coldest cloud tops and strongest storms were facing east of the center and away from the U.S.

Researchers identify novel way to target Ebola
Researchers have identified a potential new way to attack Ebola.

Clinical trial reveals genetic fault that reduces the effectiveness of leukemia treatment
A genetic fault has been identified in people with an aggressive type of leukemia that can significantly affect how they respond to treatment.

New study analyzes causes of 2010 landslide in Saint-Jude, Quebec
New study discusses triggers of the Saint-Jude landslide in Quebec that occurred in nearly 10,000-year-old sensitive clay sediment that 'liquefies' when disturbed.

Household chores: Women still do more
Canadian women of all ages still tend to do more household chores than their male partners, no matter how much they work or earn in a job outside the home.

Even open-label placebos work -- if they are explained
For some medical complaints, open-label placebos work just as well as deceptive ones.

Umbilical cord stem cells show promise as heart failure treatment
Intravenous stem cell infusion derived from umbilical cords appears to boost heart muscle function in patients with heart failure, according to a small study.

Noise pollution found to be disruptive for schooling fish
New research from scientists at the University of Bristol has found that noise from human construction projects can disrupt the schools that are so impressive in marine fish.

Lost continent of Zealandia: Scientists return from expedition to sunken land
After a nine-week voyage to study the lost, submerged continent of in the South Pacific, a team of 32 scientists from 12 countries has arrived in Hobart, Tasmania, aboard the research vessel JOIDES Resolution.

Caribbean praying mantises have ancient African origin
Three seemingly unrelated praying mantis groups inhabiting Cuba and the rest of the Greater Antilles actually share an ancient African ancestor and possibly form the oldest endemic animal lineage on the Caribbean islands, Cleveland Museum of Natural History researchers have determined.

The connection between nitrogen utilization and groundwater quality is clear
A new study based on 70 years of monitoring data highlights the importance of a consistent national groundwater monitoring program and the need for development of future effective nitrogen mitigation measures in intensive agriculture worldwide in order to protect groundwater resources.

Some marine species more vulnerable to climate change than others
Certain marine species will fare much worse than others as they become more vulnerable to the effects of climate change, a new UBC study has found.

Energy harvested from evaporation could power much of US, says study
In the first evaluation of evaporation as a renewable energy source, researchers at Columbia University find that US lakes and reservoirs could generate 325 gigawatts of power, nearly 70 percent of what the United States currently produces.

Quantum communications bend to our needs
The potential for photon entanglement in quantum computing and communications has been known for decades.

In plain sight
UCSB researchers compare the performance of human subjects versus deep neural networks in visual searches.

Opening up a new chapter for early diagnosis of Alzheimer's
Korean researchers have identified the cause of olfactory dysfunction in the early stage of Alzheimer's disease.

A majority of medical professionals improperly share log-in credentials to EMRs
Nearly three-quarters (73 percent) of the 299 participants claimed to have used another medical staff member's password to access an EMR at work.

Using genetics to guide warfarin dosing after hip, knee replacement
Among patients undergoing hip or knee replacement and treated with the blood thinner warfarin, customizing dosing to a patient's genetic and clinical profile resulted in the prevention of more adverse outcomes than clinically-guided dosing, according to a study published by JAMA.

Artificial intelligence for obtaining chemical fingerprints
Researchers at the universities of Vienna and Göttingen have succeeded in developing a method for predicting molecular infrared spectra based on artificial intelligence.

ACA Medicaid expansion cut disparities in cancer care for minorities, poor
States that fully expanded their Medicaid programs under the Affordable Care Act cut their rates of uninsured cancer patients by more than half between 2011 and 2014.

Illinois researchers develop gene circuit design strategy to advance synthetic biology
Scientists and engineers have developed synthetic gene circuits that program the functionality, performance, and behavior of living cells.

One in 5 teens report having had a concussion in their lifetime
A new University of Michigan study confirms what many hospital emergency rooms nationwide are seeing: teens playing contact sports suffer from concussions.

Does your back feel stiff? Well, it may not actually be stiff, UAlberta study finds
Feeling of stiffness may mean something else is going on in the back.

Warm Northwest waters draw spawning fish north
Unusually warm ocean conditions off the Pacific Northwest in the last few years led anchovies, sardines and hake to begin spawning in Northwest waters much earlier in the year and, for anchovy, longer than biologists have ever recorded before, new research has found.

Researchers have a new twist on asymmetric catalysis
Researchers at Osaka and Iwate Medical University developed an efficient and simple chemical synthesis of a new kind of twisted helicene molecule containing a sulfur group, thiophene.

Higher risk of heart failure in cold weather, study suggests
An increase in hospitalization and death in elderly patients with heart failure could be associated with changes in temperature and atmospheric pressure, according to a new study in Environment International.

Researchers identify possible biomarker for diagnosing CTE during life
A new biomarker (CCL11) for chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE) has been discovered that may allow the disease to be diagnosed during life for the first time.

Nerves control the body's bacterial community
Using the freshwater polyp Hydra as a model organism, Kiel University researchers and their international colleagues investigated how the simple nervous system of these animals interacts with the microbiome.

Uninsured cancer patients saw increased coverage for care following Medicaid expansion
A new study finds that Medicaid expansion enacted as part of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act improved coverage for care for cancer patients receiving radiation therapy and potentially decreased health care disparities.

New study shows aggressive policing link to major crime
A reduction in the systematic and aggressive enforcement of minor violations by police may reduce major crime complaints, suggests a paper published this week in Nature Human Behaviour.

Weight loss for adults at any age leads to cost savings, study suggests
Helping an adult lose weight leads to significant cost savings at any age, with those savings peaking at age 50, suggests a new Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health study.

Chronic wasting disease
Research published in the International Journal of Global Environmental Issues, summarizes the efforts in disease surveillance and risk management of chronic wasting disease (CWD) in deer and shows that past management strategies such as selective culling, herd reduction, and hunter surveillance have had only limited effectiveness.

Graphene forged into three-dimensional shapes
Researchers from Finland and Taiwan have discovered how graphene, a single-atom-thin layer of carbon, can be forged into three-dimensional objects by using laser light.

How to grow a spine
In a paper published Sept. 21 in Cell, Harvard Medical School genetics professor Olivier Pourquié -- whose lab discovered the segmentation clock 20 years ago -- and colleagues report that they used mouse cells to reconstitute a stable version of this clockwork for the first time in a petri dish, leading to several new discoveries about where the clock is located, what makes it tick and how the vertebral column takes shape.

Biochemists discover mechanism that helps flu viruses evolve
A new study from MIT reveals that flu viruses' rapid evolution relies in part on hijacking some of the cellular machinery of the infected host cell -- a group of proteins called chaperones, which help other proteins fold into the correct shape.

Scientists unlock mysteries of how Ebola uses people's immune defenses to cause infection
Scientists from the University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston have gained new insight into how the Ebola virus uses the body's natural defenses to speed the rate of infection and unleash its lethal disease, according to a new report in mBio. 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