Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

October 16, 2017
Brain training shows promise for patients with bipolar disorder
Researchers at McLean Hospital, an affiliate of Harvard Medical School, have discovered for the first time that computerized brain training can result in improved cognitive skills in individuals with bipolar disorder.

West Virginians say Opioid epidemic most important health issue in the state
The opioid epidemic is the most important health issue in West Virginia, above obesity, cancer, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and dental disease, according to a state-based public opinion survey commissioned by Research!America.

Healthy lifestyle reduces cardiovascular risk after gestational diabetes, NIH study shows
Women who have had gestational diabetes may be able to reduce or even eliminate their risk for cardiovascular disease by following a healthy lifestyle in the years after giving birth, according to a study by researchers at the National Institutes of Health.

During crisis, exposure to conflicting information and stress linked, UCI-led studies find
Exposure to high rates of conflicting information during an emergency is linked to increased levels of stress, and those who rely on text messages or social media reports from unofficial sources are more frequently exposed to rumors and experience greater distress, according to research led by the University of California, Irvine.

Social media accounts promote skeletal images of women
Skeletal images of bodies featuring protruding bones and pencil-thin limbs are being shared and promoted on social media, new research shows.

New study finds nature is vital to beating climate change
With just two weeks to go to the Bonn climate talks, The Nature Conservancy is launching a ground-breaking global report with 15 partners on natural climate solutions.

Novel reagent detects memory immune response in vaccinated animals
Researchers have developed a novel reagent capable of detecting rare, antigen-specific B cells that indicate successful vaccination in veterinary animals.

Untangling vitamin D activation pathways in inflammation and bone health
Researchers have identified a region of the genome that regulates vitamin D activation in the kidneys, opening the door for more sophisticated treatments of diseases, including bone and immune disorders, involving vitamin D.

Study: Break the attachment before selling your stuff
Ever tried to sell something you've owned for a while on Craigslist and found that no one is willing to pony up what you're asking?

Bite on this: Kansas State University researcher finds alligators eat sharks
Jaws, beware! Alligators may be coming for you, according to a Kansas State University researcher.

Chronic inflammation plays critical role in sustained delivery of new MD therapy
Macrophages, a type of white blood cell involved in inflammation, readily take up a newly approved medication for Duchenne muscular dystrophy and promote its sustained delivery to regenerating muscle fibers long after the drug has disappeared from circulation, an experimental model study finds.

Most medical students overconfident, underprepared on nutrition guidelines
Researchers surveyed 257 medical students and found more than 55 percent were confident they could counsel patients on nutritional recommendations, but half did not achieve a passing score on a nutrition quiz.

Inpatient satisfaction improved by five-minute intervention, study finds
As hospitals seek to improve inpatient satisfaction, one effective way takes only a few minutes and no expensive equipment.

Vanderbilt researchers find novel mechanism of resistance to anti-cancer drugs
Vanderbilt investigators have discovered a novel non-genetic cause of resistance to the targeted anti-cancer therapy cetuximab.

New UTSA study describes how dopamine tells you it isn't worth the wait
A new study in Cell Reports by Matthew Wanat, assistant professor of biology at The University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA), sheds light on how dopamine cells in the brain signal the passage of time.

Cocktail tests on toxic waste called for
Surprisingly low concentrations of toxic chemicals -- from fungicides to antidepressants -- can change the way some aquatic creatures swim and feed, according to new research.

Gravitational waves shed first light on mergers of neutron stars
Researchers representing the LIGO-Virgo Collaboration, of which the CNRS is a member, as well as 70 observatories, will reveal the latest discoveries from gravitational wave research.

Waves in lakes make waves in the Earth
In a study published today in the Journal of Geophysical Research Solid Earth, scientists at the University of Utah report that small seismic signals in lakes can aid science.

Mount Sinai & Sema4 scientists identify biomarker for progression and drug response in brain cancer
Scientists at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, Sema4, and collaborating institutions including Colorado State University and Fred Hutchinson Cancer Center reported results today from a glioblastoma study in which they validated a biomarker indicative of a patient's prognosis and likely response to specific therapies.

Toward efficient high-pressure desalination
One of the biggest operational challenges for desalination plants is the fouling of membranes by microbes.

Mechanism explains how seizures may lead to memory loss
A team of researchers reveals a mechanism that can explain how even relatively infrequent seizures can lead to long-lasting cognitive deficits in animal models.

Chemical treatment improves quantum dot lasers
One of the secrets to making tiny laser devices such as opthalmic surgery scalpels work even more efficiently is the use of tiny semiconductor particles, called quantum dots.

LIGO confirms 1989 prediction about neutron star mergers producing gamma ray bursts
Today's announcement by LIGO confirms a longstanding prediction made almost thirty years ago by a team headed by Prof.

Breaking: the first light from two neutron stars merging
Seven new papers describe the first-ever detection of light from a gravitational wave source.

Decoding the origin of heavy elements in the light from a neutron star merger
On Aug. 17, scientists around the globe were treated to near-simultaneous observations by separate instruments: One set of Earth-based detectors measured the signature of a cataclysmic event sending ripples through the fabric of space-time, and a space-based detector measured the gamma-ray signature of a high-energy outburst emanating from the same region of the sky.

Majority overestimates US gay population, could influence gay rights policies
The public tends to overestimate the American gay and lesbian population, and those who do so are less likely to support equal rights measures, according to a new study by two University of Kansas political scientists.

Germ-free hatching eggs: An alternative to formaldehyde application
Hatching eggs in large-scale hatcheries are currently treated with formaldehyde to eliminate germs.

Neutrons observe vitamin B6-dependent enzyme activity useful for drug development
Scientists at the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory have performed neutron structural analysis of a vitamin B6-dependent protein, potentially opening avenues for new antibiotics and drugs to battle diseases such as drug-resistant tuberculosis, malaria and diabetes.

Tweeting rage: How immigration policies can polarize public discourse
In a University of Washington study of tweets in the months before and after the 2010 passage of Arizona's 'show me your papers' law, findings show that the average tweet about Mexican immigrants and Hispanics, in general, became more negative.

Is rushing your child to the ER the right response?
If a child gets a small burn, starts choking or swallows medication, parents may struggle to decide whether to provide first aid at home or rush them to the hospital, suggests a new national poll.

NASA sees Tropical Depression Khanun sissipating in Gulf of Tonkin
NASA's Terra satellite passed over Tropical Storm Khanun after it had passed over southern China and began dissipating in the Gulf of Tonkin.

Invasive ladybird species threatens other ladybirds in England
The harlequin ladybird, officially known as Harmonia axyridis, was widely introduced across continental Europe to limit the population of pest insects.

When lemons give you life: Herpetofauna adaptation to citrus orchards in Belize
Reptile and amphibian communities exhibit a promising level of resilience to agricultural lands, confirms a study recently published in the open-access journal ZooKeys.

Radio 'eyes' unlocking secrets of neutron-star collision
VLA detects radio waves from neutron-star collision that generated the gravitational waves observed by LIGO and VIRGO.

Seeing the light of neutron star collisions
When two neutron stars collided on Aug. 17, a widespread search for electromagnetic radiation from the event led to observations of light from the afterglow of the explosion, finally connecting a gravitational-wave-producing event with conventional astronomy using light, according to an international team of astronomers.

Some faiths more likely to turn to religion for answers to science
When it comes to seeking answers to questions about science, evangelical and black Protestants and Mormons are more likely than the general population to turn to religion, according to a new study.

Learning during development is regulated by an unexpected brain region
Half a century of research on how the brain learns to integrate visual inputs from the two eyes has provided important insights in critical period regulation, leading to the conclusion that it occurs within the cortex.

RIT researchers help usher in era of multi-messenger astronomy with LIGO discovery
Rochester Institute of Technology played a significant role in the breakthrough discovery of colliding neutron stars, cosmic collision detected in gravitational waves and in light.

Cancer relapse linked to body's own immune system
Cancer cells that survive after treatment may use the body's own immune system to wake themselves up and fuel their growth, a new study shows.

Astronomers strike cosmic gold, confirm origin of precious metals in neutron star mergers
What many thought would be a long way off, the detection of gravitational waves from the merger of binary neutron stars, actually happened on Aug.

The nursing workforce is growing more diverse and educated, finds NYU Meyers study
More males and people of color are entering nursing, and more nurses are earning bachelor's degrees compared with a decade ago, according to a new study by NYU Rory Meyers College of Nursing researchers.

Neutron star merger directly observed for the first time
On August 17, 2017, scientists made the first direct observation of a merger between two neutron stars -- the dense, collapsed cores that remain after large stars die in a supernova explosion.

The importance of asymmetry in bacteria
Research reveals a protein that acts as a vacuum cleaner of the membrane and which could be a potential new target for antibiotics.

Gestational diabetes and cardiovascular disease risk
A history of gestational diabetes was associated with a modest higher long-term risk of cardiovascular disease in women in a new study, although the absolute rate of cardiovascular disease was low in the study's younger group of predominantly white women and adhering to a healthy lifestyle over time appeared to help mitigate the risk, according to a new article published by JAMA Internal Medicine.

Filling the early universe with knots can explain why the world is three-dimensional
Filling the universe with knots shortly after it popped into existence 13.8 billion years ago provides a neat explanation for why we inhabit a three-dimensional world.

Biopsy specimen found to be reliable for evaluating DLL3 expression in small cell lung cancer
Small cell lung cancer (SCLC) biopsy specimen was found to be reliable material for evaluating DLL3 expression; high levels of DLL3 in SCLC are correlated with poor survival trends.

Women in science ask fewer questions than men, according to new research
Stereotypes suggest that women love to talk, with some studies even finding that women say three times as much as men.

Treatment based On BRCA1 level does not increase survival of stage II/III NSCLC N+ resected patients
Research shows that treating stage II and III non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) N+ resected patients with customized chemotherapy treatment based on their specific BRCA1 expression levels, as opposed to providing the standard treatment, did not increase overall survival rates among those patients who received individualized CT treatment.

Researchers confirm IASLC characterization of uncertain R status with prognosis between R0 and R1
The findings of a recent study confirm the International Association for the Study of Lung Cancer (IASLC)'s proposed criteria for uncertain resection margin status, R(un), in residual tumor (R) classification.

Endogenous infection marker guides antibiotic therapy
The endogenous infection marker procalcitonin can help to guide the use of antibiotics when treating infections.

Scientists spot explosive counterpart of LIGO/Virgo's latest gravitational waves
A team of scientists using the Dark Energy Camera (DECam), the primary observing tool of the Dark Energy Survey, was among the first to observe the fiery aftermath of a recently detected burst of gravitational waves, recording images of the first confirmed explosion from two colliding neutron stars ever seen by astronomers.

Osaka university researchers make the slipperiest surfaces adhesive
Osaka University-led research team develops new way of processing the non-stick fluoropolymers, PTFE.

A cautionary tale
A team led by LMU's Veit Hornung has elucidated the mechanism by which human cells induce inflammation upon detection of cytoplasmic DNA.

Blood pressure medication does not completely restore vascular function
Treatments for high blood pressure do not totally reverse its damaging effects on the vascular rhythms that help circulation of the blood.

Long nanotubes make strong fibers
To make long, strong and conductive carbon nanotube fibers, it's best to start with long nanotubes, according to scientists at Rice University.

ESO telescopes observe first light from gravitational wave source
ESO's fleet of telescopes have detected the first visible counterpart to a gravitational wave source.

Gamma-ray burst detection just what OSU researchers exclusively predicted
More than a month before a game-changing detection of a short gamma-ray burst -- a finding announced today -- scientists at Oregon State University predicted such a discovery would occur.

Gold origin confirmed with first ever gravitational wave sighting
Gold's origin in the Universe has finally been confirmed, after a gravitational wave source was seen and heard for the first time ever by an international collaboration of researchers, with astronomers at the University of Warwick playing a leading role.

Childhood poverty, poor support may drive up pregnant woman's biological age
Pregnant women who had low socioeconomic status during childhood and who have poor family social support appear to prematurely age on a cellular level, potentially raising the risk for complications, a new study has found.

Study: New exercises help athletes manage dangerous breathing disorder
A novel set of breathing techniques developed at National Jewish Health help athletes overcome vocal cord dysfunction and improve performance during high-intensity exercise.

Bolstering fat cells offers potential new leukemia treatment
Killing cancer cells indirectly by powering up fat cells in the bone marrow could help acute myeloid leukemia patients, says a study from McMaster University published in Nature Cell Biology.

Astronomers first to see source of gravitational waves in visible light
For the first time, astronomers have observed in visible light a cataclysmic cosmic event that generated gravitational waves detected on Earth.

LIGO announces detection of gravitational waves from colliding neutron stars
The US-based Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory and the Virgo detector in Italy announced on Oct.

Integration of smoking cessation within CT lung cancer screenings shows life-saving results
A study that integrated robust smoking cessation programs into an organized low-dose CT (LDCT) lung cancer screening program found that the inclusion of both interventions has the potential to decrease mortality rates while being relatively cost-effective.

International team observes first radio counterpart to gravitational waves
NRL Radio Astrophysics and Sensing Section astronomers join an international collaboration of researchers with the Caltech-led GROWTH project, resulting in the first ever observation of the radio counterpart to a gravitational wave event.

Aus gravitational waves world-first discovery
An Australian group was the first in the world to confirm the radio emission from a gravitational wave.

Marketing study examines what types of searches click for car buyers
A new study from The University of Texas at Dallas examines how consumers allocated their time when searching offline and on the internet as they shopped for a new automobile, and what the outcomes were for price satisfaction.

Family members play important role in managing chronic illness
Family members often play an important role in managing chronic illnesses, and a family approach may produce more effective, long-term benefits for the patient, according to a Penn State researcher.

Heads-up, CEOs -- corporate social responsibility may get you fired, study finds
Investing in product safety, employee diversity and carbon footprint reduction are all examples of corporate social responsibility (CSR) that can result in high praise for a chief executive -- or get them fired -- according to new research from the University of Notre Dame.

Risk of Caesarean section is heritable
Women born by Caesarean section are more than twice as likely to develop FDP when giving birth than women born naturally.

Astronomers follow gravitational waves to treasure
Astronomers have tracked down the source of a gravitational wave and discovered the first observed kilonova: a nuclear furnace 100 million times brighter than the Sun producing thousands of times the entire mass of the Earth in heavy elements such as precious metals.

Relatively few kidney patients need to start dialysis after undergoing TAVR
The rate of patients with chronic kidney disease undergoing a heart procedure called transcatheter aortic valve replacement (TAVR) who eventually need to start dialysis is relatively low, suggests a new study published in JACC: Cardiovascular Interventions.

Whales and dolphins have rich 'human-like' cultures and societies
Whales and dolphins (cetaceans) live in tightly-knit social groups, have complex relationships, talk to each other and even have regional dialects -- much like human societies.

Hubble observes source of gravitational waves for the first time
The NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope has observed for the first time the source of a gravitational wave, created by the merger of two neutron stars.

Discovered! Neutron star collision seen for the first time
A team of Carnegie astronomers provided the first-ever glimpse of neutron stars colliding August 17.

Scientists log newfound understanding of water's responses to changing temperatures
A team of chemists has uncovered new ways in which frozen water responds to changes in temperature to produce novel formations.

Gravitational waves + new clues from space reveal new way to make a black hole
For the first time, scientists worldwide and at Penn State University have detected both gravitational waves and light shooting toward our planet from the birthplace of a new black hole created by the merger of two neutron stars.

Students in right place, right time witness first-ever detected neutron star collision
New research published in Science details perhaps one of the biggest discoveries so far in the field of astrophysics: the merger of two neutron stars.

Spinning strands hint at folding dynamics
A Rice University lab creates flexible strings of magnetized beads to model how natural and synthetic strands bend and fold in dynamic conditions.

Nanoantenna arrays power a new generation of fluorescence-based sensors
Researchers from the Universities of Bristol and Bedfordshire, in collaboration with multinational company ABB, have designed and tested a series of plasmonic nanoantenna arrays that could lead to the development of a new generation of ultrasensitive and low-cost fluorescence sensors that could be used to monitor water quality.

Ocean atmosphere rife with microbes
Microbes are dispersed widely over the oceans with islands acting as stepping-stones to help transport of land-based organisms.

Stress might be just as unhealthy as junk food to digestive system
We all know that a poor diet is unhealthy, but a new study finds that stress may just as harmful to our bodies as a really bad diet.

NASA finds newly formed tropical storm lan over open waters
NASA-NOAA's Suomi NPP satellite provided a visible picture of newly formed Tropical Storm Lan in the Northwestern Pacific Ocean.

First observations of merging neutron stars mark a new era in astronomy
After LIGO detected gravitational waves from the merger of two neutron stars, the race was on to detect a visible counterpart, because unlike the colliding black holes responsible for LIGO's four previous detections, this event was expected to produce an explosion of visible light.

Study reveals risk factors for substance use problems, as well as resilience
A new study explores factors increasing the risk for substance use problems among African-American/Black and Latino adults residing in a high-risk urban community, as well as patterns of resilience.

Report identifies factors associated with harassment, abuse in academic fieldwork
College students considering careers in fields like archaeology or geology that require extensive work at remote field sites might want to find out how potential supervisors and advisers conduct themselves in the field.

Biology of childhood brain tumor subtypes offers clues to precision treatments
Researchers investigating pediatric low-grade gliomas (PLGG), the most common type of brain tumor in children, have discovered key biological differences in how mutated genes combine with other genes to drive this childhood cancer.

Liquid metal brings soft robotics a step closer
Scientists have invented a way to morph liquid metal into physical shapes.

Portable 3-D scanner assesses patients with elephantiasis
An estimated 120 million people worldwide are infected with lymphatic filariasis, a parasitic, mosquito-borne disease that can cause major swelling and deformity of the legs, a condition known as elephantiasis.

Study finds auto-fix tool gets more programmers to upgrade code
Failure to make necessary upgrades to software code can have dire consequences, such as the major data breach at Equifax.

A kite that might fly
Wind turbines suspended high in the sky have potential as an alternative power source for Saudi Arabia.

Major advance in nanopore detection of peptides and proteins
Nanopore technology, which is used to sequence DNA, is cheap, hand-held and works in the jungle and in space.

Shaping animal, vegetable and mineral
Harvard researchers demonstrate a technique to grow any target shape from any starting shape.

GW researchers contribute to global effort to identify extraordinary astrophysical event
Three astrophysicists from the George Washington University are part of a global group of scientists who collaborated on identification and study of the first confirmed observation of two merging neutron stars, a so-called kilonova.

An architect gene is involved in the assimilation of breast milk
A family of 'architect' genes coordinates the formation of organs and limbs during embryonic life.

Doctors urged to make a public commitment to talk to their patients about guns
In the wake of the Las Vegas mass shooting, Garen Wintemute, MD, MPH, from the Violence Prevention Program at UC Davis, says that if Congress and the White House won't do anything to stop gun violence, then doctors must take action.

Predictions by GSI scientists now confirmed
Central predictions by GSI scientists on the formation of heavy elements such as gold and platinum in the universe have now been observed astrophysically.

Sales of sugar-sweetened drinks in Jamie's Italian restaurants fall by 11 percent after 10p levy
Introducing a small levy of 10 pence per drink to the price of sugar-sweetened beverages (SSBs) sold in Jamie's Italian restaurants across the UK is likely to have contributed to a significant decline in SSB sales, according to new research published in the Journal of Epidemiology & Community Health.

What's the next step for exon skipping therapies to treat duchenne muscular dystrophy?
A team of leading European clinicians and scientists presents a unique perspective on how to move forward in the development of exon skipping therapies to treat the severe muscle-wasting disease Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy (DMD).

Astronomers detect colliding neutron stars for first time
Four Northwestern University astronomers are part of an international research collaboration that is the first to detect the spectacular collision of two neutron stars using both gravitational waves and light.

CIFAR fellows part of first gravitational wave detection of colliding neutron stars
For the first time, scientists have directly detected gravitational waves from the spectacular collision of two neutron stars, and at the same time detected visible light from the merger.

Catch a fleeting kilonova
Alerted by the first-ever gravitational waves caused by two neutron stars merging, UCSB astronomers detect the resulting optical flash

Gravitational waves detected after collision of neutron stars 120 million light years away
Tel Aviv University researchers have confirmed that gravitational 'ripples in space' occur after the collision of neutron stars, very small (typically 18 miles across) and very dense bodies that are the remains of a massive star after a supernova explosion.

Early palliative care provides no quality of life benefits for recently diagnosed MPM patients
Early specialist palliative care for patients that were recently diagnosed with malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM) does not impact quality of life (QOL) measures, according to research presented by Prof.

Harvey runoff menaces Texas' coral reefs
The more than 13 trillion gallons of floodwater from Hurricane Harvey have created a massive plume of freshwater in the Gulf of Mexico that is threatening the coral reefs of the Flower Garden Banks National Marine Sanctuary about 100 miles offshore of Galveston.

NASA sees Hurricane Ophelia lashing Ireland
NASA-NOAA's Suomi NPP satellite provided a thermal view of the clouds in hurricane Ophelia as it lashed Ireland.

A new target for marijuana
Cellular-level changes to a part of the brain's reward system induced by chronic exposure to the psychoactive component of marijuana may contribute to the drug's pleasurable and potentially addictive qualities, suggests a study in young mice published in JNeurosci.

Flu vaccine failed to protect young leukemia patients during cancer treatment
St. Jude Children's Research Hospital investigators said the results reinforce the importance of hand washing and other measures to help protect vulnerable patients from influenza infections.

Study cites race and socioeconomic factors as influential in NSCLC patient survival rates
New research found race and specific socioeconomic factors to have a significant influence on disparities in the survival rates of non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) patients.

New antibiotic resistance genes found
Researchers at Chalmers University of Technology and the University of Gothenburg, Sweden, have found several previously unknown genes that make bacteria resistant to last-resort antibiotics.

How to save giant tropical fruit bats: Work with local hunters who use bat teeth as money
Flying foxes-- giant fruit bats that look like winged German shepherd puppies-- are in trouble.

DFG to fund electron microscopes for university research
At its autumn session, the Joint Committee of the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG, German Research Foundation) approved the funding of 17 high-performance electron microscopes with a total sum of €43 million.

Sleep duration may affect the integrity of sperm DNA
A new study found a link between sleep duration and a measure of chromosomal health in sperm.

Think laterally to sidestep production problems
The side-by-side deposition of atomically flat semiconductor sheets enhances solar cell conversion efficiency.

Men develop irregular heartbeat earlier than women; extra weight a factor
The onset of an irregular heartbeat jumps sharply in men after age 50 and in women after 60.

An epigenetic key to unlock behavior change
A new study reveals how epigenetics interact with genes to shape different feeding behaviors in fruit flies.

Physically active white men at high risk for plaque buildup in arteries
White men who exercise at high levels are 86 percent more likely than people who exercise at low levels to experience a buildup of plaque in the heart arteries by middle age, a new study suggests.

Skimping on sleep may contribute to gestational diabetes
A new study has found that lack of sleep among pregnant women may be a contributing factor to the development of gestational diabetes.

Study suggests oysters offer hot spot for reducing nutrient pollution
VIMS-led study is the first to identify and quantify potentially denitrifying bacteria in the oyster gut and shell, with important implications for efforts to reduce nutrient levels in coastal waters through oyster restoration.

Rice U. study: Vibrating nanoparticles interact
Like a tuning fork struck with a mallet, tiny gold nanodisks can be made to vibrate at resonant frequencies when struck by light.

Nidoviruses redundantly express genes and encode more proteins than previously believed, study finds
Arteriviruses, a family of single-stranded RNA viruses that belongs to the order Nidovirales, produce more proteins and messenger RNAs than previously reported, a finding that provides important insights about a virus that could potentially evolve to infect humans in the future, according to a new research study.

SUTD researchers developed single cell level sorting technology using sound waves
Researchers from SUTD developed a highly accurate single cell sorting technology using focused sound waves. 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