Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

November 01, 2017
Study unveils changes in the brain during extended missions in space
MUSC neuroradiologist Donna Roberts conducted a study titled 'Effects of Spaceflight on Astronaut Brain Structure as Indicated on MRI,' the results of which will be featured in the Nov.

Transgender women take triple the number of HIV tests as trans men
A new University at Buffalo study has shown that HIV testing among transgender adults was higher in those who identified as female, were African-American or Hispanic, or had a history of incarceration.

In vitro tissue microarrays for quick and efficient spheroid characterization
A new SLAS Discovery article available for free ahead-of-print enables researchers to derive more clinically-relevant information from 3-D cell culture models.

Scientists trace the stem cells that repopulate bone marrow after transplantation
Scientists have finally tracked down the precise subset of blood-forming (also known as hematopoietic) stem cells, or HSCs, that are capable of fully repopulating the bone marrow after transplantation in nonhuman primates.

Gut microbiome may make chemo drug toxic to patients
Albert Einstein College of Medicine researchers report that the composition of people's gut bacteria may explain why some of them suffer life-threatening reactions after taking a key drug for treating metastatic colorectal cancer.

Marine scientists discover kleptopredation -- a new way of catching prey
When it comes to feeding time sea slugs are the pirates of the underwater world -- attacking prey that have just eaten in order to plunder their target's meal, new research has found.

Close friends linked to a sharper memory
Maintaining positive, warm and trusting friendships might be the key to a slower decline in memory and cognitive functioning, according to a new Northwestern Medicine study.

One step closer to defining dark matter, GPS satellite atomic clocks on the hunt
One professor who studies the earth and one who studies space came together in the pursuit to detect and define dark matter.

APA Stress in America™ survey: US at 'lowest point we can remember'
Nearly two-thirds of Americans (63 percent) say the future of the nation is a very or somewhat significant source of stress, slightly more than perennial stressors like money (62 percent) and work (61 percent), according to the American Psychological Association's report, Stress in America™: The State of Our Nation.

Researchers find genetic pathways to individualized treatment for advanced prostate cancer
Researchers at Mayo Clinic Center for Individualized Medicine have uncovered genetic clues to why tumors resist a specific therapy used for treating advanced prostate cancer.

Could the Neolithic Revolution offer evidence of best ways to adapt to climate change?
The behavior of the human population during the last intense period of global warming might offer an insight into how best to adapt to the current challenges posed by climate change, a study led by the University of Plymouth suggests.

Chimpanzees shown spontaneously 'taking turns' to solve number puzzle
A new study from Kyoto and Oxford universities and Indianapolis Zoo has shown chimpanzees spontaneously taking turns to complete a number sequencing task.

Solving of a decade long mystery could help in fight against TB
Research carried out by the University of Sussex and the Polish Academy of Sciences has identified two key proteins that allow mycobacterium tuberculosis, the causative agent of tuberculosis (TB), to 'lay low' within cells designed to destroy them.

Pregnant women should be tested more than once for the presence of Zika
Brazilian study that monitored women with confirmed Zika diagnosis detected the virus even after previous tests that pointed non-existent viral load -- the pathogen's intermittent presence in urine lasted for up to seven months.

Brexit fallout: An uncertain future for academic scientists
On June 23, 2016, the UK voted to leave the European Union -- and science has not been immune to its effects.

Saliva proteins could explain why some people overuse salt
Many Americans consume too much salt. Now in a study appearing in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, scientists report that people who can easily taste salt have differing amounts of certain proteins in their saliva than those who are less sensitive.

A quarter of problematic cannabis users have anxiety disorders, many since childhood
About a quarter of adults whose marijuana use is problematic in early adulthood have anxiety disorders in childhood and late adolescence, reports a study published in the November 2017 issue of the Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry (JAACAP).

To make surgery safer & less expensive for all, take Michigan's model national, team says
Half the dollars spent on health care in America have something to do with a surgical procedure -- including post-surgery care to fix problems that could have been prevented.

PARP inhibitor may be effective against some TNBC lacking BRCA mutations
The investigational PARP inhibitor talazoparib caused regression of patient-derived xenografts (PDXs) of triple-negative breast cancers (TNBC) that had BRCA mutations and also those that did not have BRCA mutations but had other alterations in DNA damage-repair pathways.

Luck plays a role in how language evolves, Penn team finds
Read a few lines of Chaucer or Shakespeare and you'll get a sense of how the English language has changed during the past millennium.

A nutrient mix makes phytoplankton thrive
Unicellular photosynthetic microbes -- phytoplankton -- play a fundamental role in the global carbon cycle and fuel marine food webs.

Hacking evolution, screening technique may improve most widespread enzyme
Plants evolved over millions of years into an environment that has dramatically changed in the last 150 years since the Industrial Revolution began: carbon dioxide levels have increased 50 percent, and the average global temperature has increased by nearly 2 degrees Fahrenheit.

Time to rewrite the dinosaur textbooks? Not quite yet!
An international consortium of specialists, led by Max Langer from the Universidade de São Paulo, Brazil, and including experts from Argentina, Brazil, Germany, Great Britain, and Spain has re-evaluated the data provided by Baron et al. in support of their claim.

Teen childbirth linked to increased risk for heart disease
Women who become teen-age mothers may be significantly more likely to have greater risks for cardiovascular disease later in life than older mothers.

Metal-silicone microstructures could enable new flexible optical and electrical devices
For the first time, researchers have used a single-step, laser-based method to produce small, precise hybrid microstructures of silver and flexible silicone.

Researchers look for dawn of human information sharing
Researchers are challenging a widely accepted notion, first advanced by paleoanthropologist Louis Leakey, that a 2 million-year-old rock represents the dawn of human ancestors sharing information with each other.

Penguins' calls are influenced by their habitat
Birds use vocalizations to attract mates and defend territories. But while we know a lot about how variations in vocalizations play out in songbirds, it's far less clear how this variation affects birds such as penguins in which calls are inherited.

How songbirds learn a new song
As scientists from ETH Zurich and the University of Zurich have now shown, songbirds are minimalists when it comes to learning a new song.

World's largest meeting of eye physicians and surgeons kicks off in New Orleans
Next week, thousands of eye physicians and surgeons will attend AAO 2017, the American Academy of Ophthalmology's 121st annual meeting.

New tissue-engineered blood vessel replacements one step closer to human trials
Researchers at the University of Minnesota have created a new lab-grown blood vessel replacement that is composed completely of biological materials, but surprisingly doesn't contain any living cells at implantation.

Zebra 'poo science' improves conservation efforts
How can Zebra poo tell us what an animal's response to climate change and habitat destruction will be?

Babies born late preterm may be at risk of cardiovascular diseases
Babies born late preterm at 35 weeks are at a higher risk of cardiovascular disease in adult life than those born at full term, according to research published in Experimental Physiology.

BU finds marijuana use associated with cognitive dysfunction in people with HIV
Marijuana use is associated with cognitive dysfunction in people with HIV infection who have an alcohol or other drug use disorder, according to a new study from researchers at Boston University School of Public Health (BUSPH), Boston University School of Medicine (BUSM), and Boston Medical Center (BMC).

Nicotine's hold: What the gut and gender have to do with it
Many people who smoke or chew tobacco can't seem to escape nicotine's addictive properties.

It is time for a concerted European approach to defeat cancer
ESMO President, Fortunato Ciardiello, has contributed an editorial on the priorities for future cancer research, to The Lancet Oncology with Josep Tabernero, ESMO President-Elect as co-author.

Do animals think rationally?
Previous research has shown that animals can remember specific events, use tools and solve problems.

Are some natural environments more psychologically beneficial than others?
Spending time in rural and coastal locations is more psychologically beneficial to individuals than time spent in urban green spaces, a new study in the journal Environment & Behavior reports.

Life on the edge
Research led by Newcastle University, UK, and Imperial College London, shows that 85 percent of species are now being impacted by this forest fragmentation.

Co-parenting after the end of a violent marriage: What does the first year look like?
Intimate partner violence is not uncommon among divorcing couples. Whether a woman experienced intimate partner violence during marriage -- and the kind of violence she experienced -- has an impact on how well she and her former partner are able to co-parent after separation.

Penn engineers develop filters that use nanoparticles to prevent slime build-up
Researchers at the University of Pennsylvania's School of Engineering and Applied Science have a new way of making membranes that allows them to add in a host of new abilities via functional nanoparticles that adhere to the surface of the mesh.

Improving public safety in face of extreme weather and disasters
Our ability to observe and predict severe weather events and other disasters has improved markedly over recent decades, yet this progress does not always translate into similar advances in the systems used in such circumstances to protect lives.

Alcohol makes rats more vulnerable to compulsive cocaine use
Rats given alcohol for 10 days prior to cocaine exhibited enhanced cocaine-addiction behavior, including continuing to seek cocaine despite receiving a brief electric shock when they did so, a new study reports.

New mathematical models could help solve few-body problems in physics
In physics, the conundrum known as the 'few-body problem,' how three or more interacting particles behave, has bedeviled scientists for centuries.

New drug enables infants with genetic disorder to live longer, gain motor function
Infants with the most severe form of spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) were more likely to show gains in motor function and were 47 percent more likely to survive without permanent assisted ventilation support when treated with a new medication, according to a study published today in the New England Journal of Medicine.

Gold nanoantennas help in creation of more powerful nanoelectronics
In the tip-enhanced Raman spectroscopy study physicists from Tomsk Polytechnic University first showed the built-in strain that arises when 2-D materials interact with other nanostructures and might improve properties of advanced nanoelectronics.

Breast cancer researchers track changes in normal mammary duct cells leading to disease
Breast cancer researchers have mapped early genetic alterations in normal-looking cells at various distances from primary tumors to show how changes along the lining of mammary ducts can lead to disease.

Babies can use context to look for things, study demonstrates
In a new study, infants as young as 6 months old demonstrated that they can rapidly integrate learning, memory and attention to improve their search for faces in a simple scene.

Lose fat, preserve muscle: Weight training beats cardio for older adults
Weight training or cardio? For older adults trying to slim down, pumping iron might be the way to go.

New study: Innovative heart device is safe and effective
A new study has found that a pioneering device to repair heart valves is safe and effective, and can reduce the invasiveness and side effects of conventional mitral valve surgery.

Are elevated levels of mercury in the American dipper due to run-of-river dams?
A study published in Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry used American dippers to determine if run-of-river (RoR) dams altered food webs and mercury levels at 13 stream sites in British Columbia.

Newly described giraffid species may help trace evolution of giraffe ancestors
A new giraffid species from Spain may extend the range and timespan of the ancestors of giraffes, according to a study published Nov.

Climate change could decrease Sun's ability to disinfect lakes
Increasing organic runoff as a result of climate change may be reducing the penetration of pathogen-killing ultraviolet (UV) sunlight in inland lakes, rivers, and coastal waters, according to a new study in the journal Scientific Reports.

New analysis shows Brazil slows deforestation with land registration program
Brazil's environmental land registration program has been successful in slowing down the rate of deforestation on private land, according to a new study.

Study identifies bottlenecks in early seagrass growth
A new study by an international research team reveals bottlenecks in the growth of seagrass from seed to seedling, knowledge useful for improving seed-based restoration efforts.

The fingerprints of coastal carbon sinks
A new study highlights a technique that could be used to accurately measure levels of soil carbon in coastal carbon sinks, such as mangrove forests.

Penn researchers demonstrate how to control liquid crystal patterns
Researchers at the University of Pennsylvania demonstrated that not only could patterns on liquid crystals be controlled at nanoscales, but the changes could be visible without microscopes.

Jellyfish-inspired electronic skin glows when it gets hurt
Electronic-skin technologies for prosthetics and robots can detect the slightest touch or breeze.

A new advanced forensics tool
Polymers are highly prized by industry and increasingly used as replacements for metals in the manufacture of e.g. automobile parts and firearms.

Molybdenum in Wisconsin wells not from coal ash
Natural causes, not leaching coal ash, are to blame for high levels of molybdenum in drinking water wells in southeastern Wisconsin, a study by Duke and Ohio State researchers finds.

Researchers find low genetic diversity in domestic ferrets
Researchers reported that the domestic ferrets in North America and Australia had extremely low genetic diversity, whereas ferrets in Europe had higher genetic diversity, as periodic hybridization with wild polecats appears to occur.

Many prescription drug users not aware of driving-related risks
A large portion of patients taking prescription drugs that could affect driving may not be aware they could potentially be driving impaired, according to research in the November issue of the Journal of Studies on Alcohol and Drugs.

Almost half of those who resolve a problem with drugs or alcohol do so without assistance
A study from the Recovery Research Institute at Massachusetts General Hospital has estimated, for the first time, the number of Americans who have overcome serious problems with the use of alcohol or other drugs.

Physicists describe new dark matter detection strategy
Brown University physicists propose a dark matter detector that would use superfluid helium to explore mass ranges for dark matter particles thousands of times smaller than current large-scale experiments.

Investigating the collateral effects of antibiotics
Antibiotics can influence the swimming and swarming ability of multidrug-resistant bacteria, according to a new study in mSphere, an open-access journal of the American Society for Microbiology.

Infertility linked to higher risk of death among women
Women with a history of infertility have a 10 percent increased risk of death compared to those without reported infertility struggles, according to results of a new study from researchers at the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania.

Brain tumour's 'addiction' to common amino acid could be its weakness
Starving a childhood brain tumour of the amino acid glutamine could improve the effect of chemotherapy, according to an early study led by Queen Mary University of London (QMUL) and funded by Children with Cancer UK and the Medical Research Council.

U of G researchers provide fisheries a solution to overharvesting
Many commercial fisheries are threatened by overharvesting. However, they can't address the problem because of inadequate scientific information, from overall population numbers to data on how fast fish grow and reproduce.

Hot flashes, night sweats connected to obstructive sleep apnea risk in middle-aged women
In a new study published today in Menopause, researchers have found that the hot flashes and night sweats faced by upward of 80 percent of middle-aged women may be linked to an increased risk of obstructive sleep apnea.

Feral animals pose major threat to Outback, climate change study finds
A study of changing rainfall and wildfire patterns over 22 years in Australia's Simpson Desert has found - in addition to a likely climate-induced decrease in cover of the dominant plant spinifex - introduced cats and foxes pose a major threat to seed-eating rodents.

Rutgers-led research could revolutionize nuclear waste reprocessing and save money
Seeking a better way to capture radioactive iodides in spent nuclear reactor fuel, Rutgers-New Brunswick scientists have developed an extremely efficient 'molecular trap' that can be recycled and reused

Inflammation in middle age may be tied to brain shrinkage decades later
People who have biomarkers tied to inflammation in their blood in their 40s and 50s may have more brain shrinkage decades later than people without the biomarkers, according to a study published in the Nov.

In the lab and in the clinic, alisertib with TAK-228 excels against solid tumors
University of Colorado Cancer Center studies presented this weekend at AACR Molecular Targets and Cancer Therapeutics Meeting show that using the drug alisertib along with the drug TAK-228 is more effective against triple-negative breast cancer and solid tumors than either drug alone.

Two classes of GGAA-microsatellites in a Ewing sarcoma context
In a study published in PLOS ONE, researchers describe two types of GGAA-microsatellites and their roles in EWS/FLI binding and gene regulation in Ewing sarcoma.

Why do some obese people have 'healthier' fat tissue than others?
One little understood paradox in the study of obesity is that overweight people who break down fat at a high rate are less healthy than peers who store their fat more effectively.

Wind farms along mountain ridges may negatively affect bats
By attaching miniaturized Global Positioning System tags to cave bats near a mountain ridge in Thailand, researchers have shown that bats repeatedly use mountain slopes to ascend to altitudes of more than 550 m above the ground.

Ensuring the survival of elephants in Laos: A matter of economics
Asian elephant populations in Laos, which are under a process of commodification, have dropped by half in the last 30 years.

Quality of life deterioration delayed if progression of advanced breast cancer delayed
Patients with advanced breast cancer have a better quality of life for longer if the progression of their disease can be delayed, according to new results presented at the Advanced Breast Cancer Fourth International Consensus Conference.

Empowered employees are more proactive -- even when they don't trust their leader
New research confirms that employees with empowering leaders are more proactive -- and, for the first time, shows that this effect occurs by increasing employee confidence to undertake tasks beyond the job description.

Topical gel made from oral blood pressure drugs shown effective in healing chronic wounds
An international team of researchers led by Johns Hopkins has shown that a topical gel made from a class of common blood pressure pills that block inflammation pathways speeds the healing of chronic skin wounds in mice and pigs.

New study links severe hot flashes with greater risk of obstructive sleep Apnea
Many menopausal women complain about poor sleep. Should the problem be blamed simply on menopause or on a more serious underlying sleep disorder such as obstructive sleep apnea (OSA)?

Plastic nanoparticles inspired by nature could improve cancer drug delivery
UNSW Sydney scientists have developed a way to control the shape of polymer molecules so they self-assemble into non-spherical nanoparticles -- an advance that could improve the delivery of toxic drugs to tumors.

Riding the bike to work is just as effective as leisure time exercise
A new study conducted at the University of Copenhagen shows that inactive, overweight people can lose fat mass just as effectively by riding the bike to work than by exercising in their leisure time.

New theory addresses how life on earth arose from the primordial muck
Life on Earth originated in an intimate partnership between the nucleic acids (genetic instructions for all organisms) and small proteins called peptides, according to two new papers from biochemists and biologists at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and the University of Auckland.

Landmark asbestos study published in The Lancet Public Health
A landmark study from The Australian National University into the health impacts of living in a house with loose-fill asbestos insulation has been published in the international journal The Lancet Public Health.

New SOFT e-textiles could offer advanced protection for soldiers and emergency personnel
New technology from Dartmouth College harnesses electronic signals in a smart fabric to detect, capture, concentrate and filter toxic chemicals.

Scientists create magnetic system that transforms heat into motion
Scientists have discovered a pioneering new technique to transform ambient heat into motion in nanoscale devices - which could revolutionise future generations of data storage and sensors.

White matter damage linked to chronic musculoskeletal pain in Gulf War veterans
A Veterans Affairs study has linked structural damage in the white matter of the brain to chronic musculoskeletal pain in Gulf War veterans.

Vanderbilt study shows azithromycin overprescribed for childhood pneumonia
A combination of two antibiotics is often prescribed to treat community-acquired pneumonia in children but a JAMA Pediatrics study is now showing that using just one of the two has the same benefit to patients in most cases.

People with psychotic-like experiences spend less time in healthy brain states
A new study looks at the brain dynamics of healthy people with psychotic symptoms

Miracle cure costs less than a budget airline flight
The revolution in generic drugs means that a 12-week course of drugs to cure hepatitis C can be manufactured for just US$50.

Treatment for dogs alleviates fear of noisy fireworks
With Bonfire Night approaching, many dogs suffer anxiety and fear from the loud bangs and explosions of firework displays.

Mapping the microbiome of...everything
In the Earth Microbiome Project, an extensive global team co-led by researchers at University of California San Diego, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, University of Chicago and Argonne National Laboratory collected more than 27,000 samples from numerous, diverse environments around the globe.

Poll: One-third of Latinos say they have experienced discrimination in jobs and housing
This report is part of a series titled

Survey findings: 4 in 10 healthcare professionals work while sick
A new study suggests that healthcare professionals (HCPs) should heed to their own advice: stay home when sick.

Breast cancer patients forego post-surgery treatment due to mistrust, study suggests
Nearly one-third of women with breast cancer went against their doctor's advice and chose not to begin or complete the recommended adjuvant anti-cancer therapy to kill residual tumor cells following surgery, according to a study led by a Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health researcher.

Intensifying winds could increase east Antarctica's contribution to sea level rise
Totten Glacier, the largest glacier in East Antarctica, is being melted from below by warm water that reaches the ice when winds over the ocean are strong, according to research led by The University of Texas at Austin.

National study by CU & Duke identifies best method for achieving a healthy IVF birth
New research by the University of Colorado suggests transferring fresh donor eggs during IVF provide a higher chance of implantation and using a single embryo result in healthier birth outcomes.

Vitamin E discovery in maize could lead to more nutritious crop
New research has identified genes that control vitamin E content in maize grain, a finding that could lead to improving the nutritional profile of this staple crop.

One-step 3-D printing of catalysts developed at Ames Laboratory
The US Department of Energy's Ames Laboratory has developed a 3-D printing process that creates a chemically active catalytic object in a single step, opening the door to more efficient ways to produce catalysts for complex chemical reactions in a wide scope of industries.

One factor that may help schools close racial achievement gap
A study of one Texas school district reveals one of the best evidence-based ways ever found to close the educational achievement gap between black and white students.

New Greenland maps show more glaciers at risk
New maps of Greenland's coastal seafloor and bedrock beneath its massive ice sheet show that two to four times as many coastal glaciers are at risk of accelerated melting as had previously been thought.

Bacterial Fats, not dietary ones, may deserve the blame for heart disease
Heart disease and fatty clogs in the arteries go hand in hand.

Citizen science may boost engagement and understanding in undergraduate biology classes
Citizen science projects, such as ClimateWatch, can boost engagement in undergraduate courses, according to a study published Nov.

Can corals adapt to climate change?
Cool-water corals can adapt to a slightly warmer ocean, but only if global greenhouse gas emissions are reduced, a study in Science Advances found.

Phase 1 study shows encouraging data for gene replacement therapy for SMA type I
A one-time intravenous infusion of the high dose of gene therapy extended the survival of patients with spinal muscular atrophy type 1 (SMA1) in a Phase 1 clinical trial, according to a study published in the New England Journal of Medicine.

Your bones affect your appetite -- and your metabolism!
A Montreal Clinical Research Institute discovery sheds light on osteocalcin, a hormone produced by our bones that affects how we metabolize sugar and fat.

Scientists develop groundnut resistant to aflatoxin
The discovery has the potential to drastically improve food safety and reduce losses caused by the contamination from the poisonous carcinogen, aflatoxin.

NASA investigates invisible magnetic bubbles in outer solar system
Forty years ago, the twin Voyagers spacecraft were launched to explore the frontiers of our solar system, and have since made countless discoveries, including finding magnetic bubbles around two of the outer planets.

One year results from the REDUCE trial reported at TCT 2017
Results from the prospective, multicenter, randomized investigator-initiated REDUCE trial were reported today at the 29th annual Transcatheter Cardiovascular Therapeutics (TCT) scientific symposium.

Subset of stem cells identified as source for all cells in blood and immune systems
Researchers at Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center have identified a specific subset of adult blood stem cells that is exclusively responsible for repopulating the entire blood and immune system after a transplant.

Oregon team says physics explains protein unpredictability
University of Oregon scientists theorized that they could manipulate a protein one mutation at a time and predict its evolution.

Human activities are reshaping forest animal communities around the world
Forest-dwelling animals don't have to live right by a road, pasture or human settlement to be affected by what scientists call forest edges.

New research shows where in the brain the earliest signs of Alzheimer's occur
Researchers at Lund University in Sweden have for the first time convincingly shown where in the brain the earliest signs of Alzheimer's occur.

Research documents link between nightmares and self-harm
Research by doctoral student Chelsea Ennis found a link between nightmares and self-injurious behavior.

Largest ever collection of patient data of inherited epilepsy conditions
Researchers from Swansea University Medical School have joined up with five other centres from around the world to compile the biggest recorded collection of families with forms of epilepsy where genetics may play a part in the recurring feature of the condition.

An early Christmas present: Scientists have unwrapped the reindeer genome
A new paper published today in GigaScience describes the sequencing and analysis of the reindeer genome.

Should patients be asleep or awake during brain surgery?
Deep brain stimulation eases the effects of Parkinson's disease and tremor.

Is he really that into you?
New research published in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology finds that women who were reminded of a time that their dad was absent from their lives -- or who actually experienced poor quality fathering while growing up -- perceived greater mating intent in the described behaviors of a hypothetical male dating partner and when talking with a man. 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