Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

November 21, 2017
Revolutionary imaging technique uses CRISPR to map DNA mutations
A new nanomapping technology could transform the way disease-causing genetic mutations are diagnosed and discovered.

Tempting your taste buds: Food cues entice consumers to overeat
The mouth-watering aroma of juicy burgers and crispy fries, and the eye-catching menu signs with delicious food pictures can tempt many hungry patrons to stop at fast-food restaurants.

Researchers identify mutation that causes bad teeth in Samoyed dogs
A mutation in a gene called SCL24A4 that causes enamel hypoplasia, or poorly formed enamel of the teeth in Samoyed dogs has been identified by researchers at the Center for Companion Animal Health, University of California, Davis.

Video game improves balance in youth with autism
Playing a video game that rewards participants for holding various

Eight-year research stretch yields treatise on tapeworms along with hundreds of new species
A special publication titled

A chicken-flavored electrolyte drink could help sniffer dogs stay hydrated
The first comparison of plain water, electrolyte injections and a chicken-flavored electrolyte drink as techniques for keeping sniffer dogs hydrated when working in hot weather finds that while all are safe and effective, dogs drink more and are more hydrated when given a chicken-flavored electrolyte drink.

Imaging technique unlocks the secrets of 17th century artists
The secrets of 17th century artists can now be revealed, thanks to 21st century signal processing.

Women prefer getting mammograms every year
Women prefer to get their mammograms every year, instead of every two years, according to a new study.

OSU linguistics team using Ohio Supercomputer Center to translate lesser-known languages
William Schuler, Ph.D., a linguistics professor at The Ohio State University, is part of a project to develop technology for languages about which translators and linguists know nothing.

Turtles & technology advance understanding of lung abnormality
A study of an unusual snapping turtle with one lung found shared characteristics with humans born with one lung who survive beyond infancy.

Penn study identifies new malaria parasites in wild bonobos
Malaria parasites, although widespread among wild chimpanzees and gorillas, have not been detected in bonobos, a chimp cousin.

Cases of heart failure continue to rise; poorest people worst affected
The number of people being diagnosed with heart failure in the UK continues to rise as a result of demographic changes common to many developed countries, new research by The George Institute for Global Health at the University of Oxford suggests.

Correctly used neonics do not adversely affect honeybee colonies, new research finds
Amid mounting controversy over use of neonicotinoids and declining bee population, a new analysis by U of G scientists of previously unpublished studies and reports commissioned by agri-chemical companies Bayer and Syngenta -- as well as published papers from the scientific literature -- shows no significant ill effects on honeybee colonies from three common insecticides made by the companies.

Disordered eating among young adults found to have long-term negative health effects
According to a recent University of Helsinki study, disordered eating among young adults has long-term effects on their health.

Researchers reveal new details on aged brain, Alzheimer's and dementia
In a comprehensive analysis of samples from 107 aged human brains, researchers at the Allen Institute for Brain Science, UW Medicine and Kaiser Permanente Washington Health Research Institute have discovered details that will help researchers better understand the biological bases for Alzheimer's disease and dementia in older populations.

UTA detects pathogenic bacteria in Texas groundwater near natural gas extraction sites
Three new research studies from the University of Texas at Arlington have found harmful pathogenic bacteria in Texas groundwater near unconventional natural gas extraction sites.

RNG105/caprin1 is essential for long-term memory formation
The research group of Associate Professor Nobuyuki Shiina of the National Institute for Basic Biology have revealed that the function of RNG105 (aka Caprin1) is essential for the formation of long-term memory.

Argonne scientists capture several R&D 100 Awards
Innovative technologies developed by researchers at the U.S. Department of Energy's (DOE) Argonne National Laboratory recently earned several R&D 100 Awards.

Can an insulin pill delay or prevent type 1 diabetes?
A daily insulin pill did not delay or prevent the development of type 1 diabetes among relatives of people with type 1 diabetes at increased risk of this disease.

Sunrise and sunset guide daily activities of city-dwellers
Despite artificial lightning and social conventions, the dynamics of daylight still influence the daily activities of people living in modern, urban environments, according to new research published in PLOS Computational Biology.

Health service complaints system risking patients' and doctors' health
Current process for complaints against doctors reduces their wellbeing and causes fear-driven working practices that could compromise patient care.

Different types of alcohol elicit different emotional responses
Different types of alcohol elicit different emotional responses, but spirits are most frequently associated with feelings of aggression, suggests research published in the online journal BMJ Open.

Finding their inner bird: Using modern genomics to turn alligator scales into birdlike feathers
In a new study published in the advanced online edition of Molecular Biology and Evolution, Chuong has led an international team to identify a plethora of new genes involved in scale and feather development.

Corn genetics research exposes mechanism behind traits becoming silent
For more than a century, plant geneticists have been studying maize as a model system to understand the rules governing the inheritance of traits, and a team of researchers recently unveiled a previously unknown mechanism that triggers gene silencing in corn.

UQ dipstick technology could revolutionize disease diagnosis
New dipstick technology that enables pathogen detection and the rapid diagnosis of human, animal and plant disease in even the most remote locations has been developed by University of Queensland scientists.

An international group of scientists reveals the mystery about the origin of gold
The University of Granada participates in the discovery of the first register of gold found under South America, in the Argentinean Patagonia, 70 kilometers under the surface.

A model by which plants adapt their photosynthetic metabolism to light intensity
A new model explains the molecular mechanism used by plants to adapt their photosynthetic mechanism to light intensity.

Emergency department visits for self-inflicted injuries increase among young US females
Emergency department visits for self-inflicted injuries among young females increased significantly in recent years, particularly among girls 10 to 14.

Air pollution linked to poorer quality sperm
Air pollution, particularly levels of fine particulate matter (PM2.5), is associated with poorer quality sperm, suggests research published online in Occupational & Environmental Medicine.

Physicists explain metallic conductivity of thin carbon nanotube films
I want to suggest a press release: A group of researchers has examined the optical and dielectric properties of thin macroscopic films based on single-walled carbon nanotubes and obtained an explanation for the metallic nature of their conductivity using infrared and terahertz spectroscopy.

Report highlights opportunities and risks associated with synthetic biology and bioengineering
Human genome editing, 3-D-printed replacement organs and artificial photosynthesis - the field of bioengineering offers great promise for tackling the major challenges that face our society.

Male triathletes may be putting their heart health at risk
Competitive male triathletes face a higher risk of a potentially harmful heart condition called myocardial fibrosis, according to new research.

Schooling fish mainly react to one or two neighbors at a time
New research has shown schooling fish constantly change who they decide to pay attention to and respond to one or two neighbors at a time.

Unexpected atmospheric vortex behavior on Saturn's moon Titan
A new study led by a University of Bristol earth scientist has shown that recently reported unexpected behavior on Titan, the largest moon of Saturn, is due to its unique atmospheric chemistry.

New database catalogues plants that soak up contamination
Hyperaccumulators are unusual plants that can absorb much larger amounts of metal compounds in their leaves and stems than normal plants, and they are very useful for cleaning up contaminated land.

New findings to help HIV scientists establish 'template' for potent antibodies
New data published today in Immunity further illuminate how some human beings generate powerful, HIV-blocking antibodies.

Biomechanical model could reduce wobbling of pedestrian bridges
The dangerous wobbling of pedestrian bridges could be reduced by using biomechanically inspired models of pedestrian response to bridge motion and a mathematical formula to estimate the critical crowd size at which bridge wobbling begins, according to a study led by Georgia State University.

New X-ray spectroscopy explores hydrogen-generating catalyst
Using a newly developed technique, researchers from Japan, Germany and the US have identified a key step in production of hydrogen gas by a bacterial enzyme.

Legal analysis finds Arkansas law that bars protection of LGBTQ people unconstitutional
An original legal analysis by NYU College of Global Public Health finds an Arkansas law that prohibits local governments from enacting civil rights protections for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, or queer (LGBTQ) individuals to be unconstitutional.

What does it mean for the husband when his wife keeps her own surname?
When a woman chooses not to take her husband's surname after marriage, people perceive her husband as being higher in traits related to femininity and lower in traits related to masculinity.

More needs to be done to ensure 24-hour working is not the new norm
Employers should do more to ensure employees do not feel pressured into working outside of their contractual hours and offer more support regarding how they work flexibly, a new study in the International Journal of Management Reviews reports.

Are lipid-based products more effective for treating dry eye disease?
New treatments for dry eye disease that deliver lipids to the ocular surface are designed to more closely mimic the important tear film lipid layer at the air-water interface in the eye.

New simple test could help cystic fibrosis patients find best treatment
While new CF drugs are life-changing for some patients, they don't work for everyone.

Fish switch attention from neighbor to neighbor for seamless collective movement
In a school of rummy-nose tetras, a common aquarium fish, group coordination appears to occur by each fish continuously changing which of its neighbors it pays attention to, according to new research published in PLOS Computational Biology.

The main switch
The three-dimensional folding of DNA provides important epigenetic mechanisms in the formation of cardiac muscle cells.

Refining pesticides to kill pests, not bees
Researchers at Michigan State University's entomology department have unlocked a key to maintain the insecticide's effectiveness in eliminating pests without killing beneficial bugs, such as bees.

Water cooling for the Earth's crust
How deep can seawater penetrate through cracks and fissures into the seafloor?

To forget or to remember? Memory depends on subtle brain signals, scientists find
Understanding how brains actively erase memories may open new understanding of memory loss and aging, and open the possibility of new treatments for neurodegenerative disease.

Chemo brain starts during cancer's progression, not just after chemotherapy
The memory and thinking problems experienced by cancer survivors, known as 'chemo brain' or 'chemo fog,' are not just the result of chemotherapy treatment, they may start as tumors form and develop, suggests a Baycrest-led study.

Quantum optics allows us to abandon expensive lasers in spectroscopy
An international research group together with scientists from the MSU have developed a time-resolved spectroscopy method that allows studying fast processes in samples.

Atopic eczema: One size does not fit all
Researchers from the UK and Netherlands have identified five distinct subgroups of eczema, a finding that helps explain how the condition can affect people at different stages of their lives.

Watching atoms move in hybrid perovskite crystals reveals clues to improving solar cells
The discovery of nanoscale changes deep inside hybrid perovskites could shed light on developing low-cost, high-efficiency solar cells.

Greater government responsiveness is paramount to maintaining stable societies
In a new study published in EPJ B, Claudius Gros from Goethe University Frankfurt, Germany has shown that over time, the stability of our democracies can only be preserved by findings ways to reduce the time span governments typically need to respond to the wishes of citizens, particularly when confronted with external shocks.

New tool can help job searchers better position themselves in market
A novel method, developed by an economist at the Tepper School of Business at Carnegie Mellon University, has been created to evaluate a worker's skillset and determine its impact on wages.

Diabetes: Immune system can regulate insulin
Inflammation processes are responsible for the failure of insulin production in diabetes patients.

Mucosal healing: An objective measure of disease activity?
The absence of inflammatory and ulcerative lesions in all segments of the colon, also known as mucosal healing, should be the end goal in treating patients with ulcerative colitis according to an editorial in the journal Gastrointestinal Endoscopy.

How to cut your lawn for grasshoppers
Picture a grasshopper landing randomly on a lawn of fixed area.

Climate changes triggered immigration to America in the 19th century
From Trump to Heinz, some of America's most famous family names and brands trace their origins back to Germans who emigrated to the country in the 19th century.

Second HIV test helps prevent incorrect HIV diagnosis in infants
Confirmatory HIV testing can substantially reduce the number of infants in South Africa who may be falsely diagnosed as HIV-infected and started on unneeded treatment, according to a new study published this week in PLOS Medicine by Lorna Dunning of the University of Cape Town, South Africa, and colleagues.

The art and science of glassblowing (video)
If you've ever tapped a screen to send a tweet, opted for a glass bottled soda because of taste, or drooled over art glass in a gallery, then your life has been changed for the better by the transparent yet durable combination of sand and simple chemicals we call glass.

Integrative medicine approaches for pain treatment -- can they be an alternative to Opioids?
Can acupuncture and yoga help to fight the opioid epidemic?

Virtual reality allows you to look inside your body and could help improve drug delivery
Renderings of 3-D cells in the body are traditionally displayed using 2-D media, such as on a computer screen or paper; however, the advent of Virtual Reality (VR) headsets means it is now possible to visualize and interact with scientific data in a 3-D virtual world.

Researchers at IST Austria define function of an enigmatic synaptic protein
Communication is often mired in contradiction -- also in the brain.

Sugar industry withheld evidence of sucrose's health effects nearly 50 years ago
A US sugar industry trade group appears to have pulled the plug on a study that was producing animal evidence linking sucrose to disease nearly 50 years ago, researchers argue in a paper publishing on Nov.

For infants with heart disease, are shunts or stents better to maintain blood flow?
Infants with various forms of congenital heart disease require a stable source of blood flow to their lungs in order to survive until a more definitive operation can be performed.

Nano-watch has steady hands
An international team from the Universities of Vienna, Duisburg-Essen and Tel Aviv have created a nanomechanical hand to show the time of an electronic clock, by spinning a tiny cylinder using light.

Taking proton pump inhibitors not linked to higher dementia risk
In a new research article published in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society, scientists were able to conclude that developing dementia or Alzheimer's disease (the most common form of dementia) did not appear to be linked to taking proton pump inhibitors (PPIs).

Good cells gone bad
A new study from The Scripps Research Institute (TSRI) is the first to show precisely how a process in nerve cells, called the S-nitrosylation (SNO) reaction, may contribute to Parkinson's disease.

Army scientist studies thunderstorms to improve battlefield missions
An Army scientist working at the Army Research Laboratory has discovered a new pattern in the evolution of thunderstorms that can be used to better predict how weather and the environment will affect Army assets such as unmanned aerial systems on the battlefield.

Social networks and survival: Social ties could help with cancer management
Researchers from Brigham and Women's Hospital led by Ying Bao, MD, ScD, an epidemiologist in BWH's Channing Division of Network Medicine and Assistant Professor at Harvard Medical School, have found that women with stronger social networks had better survival after colorectal cancer diagnosis and conclude that social network strengthening could be a tool for management of colorectal cancer.

Cinnamon turns up the heat on fat cells
New research from the University of Michigan Life Sciences Institute has determined how a common holiday spice -- cinnamon -- might be enlisted in the fight against obesity.

PPPL scientists deliver new high-resolution diagnostic to national laser facility
Scientists from the Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory have built and delivered a high-resolution X-ray spectrometer for the largest and most powerful laser facility in the world.

The isoforms of the HP1 protein regulate the organization and structure of heterochromatin
Researchers from the Epigenetics and Cancer Biology Program of the Bellvitge Biomedical Research Institute (IDIBELL), led by Dr.

Proposed cuts to US Malaria Initiative could mean millions more malaria cases
Cutting the budget of the President's Malaria Initiative (PMI) by 44 percent, as the US Congress has proposed, would lead to an estimated 67 million additional cases of malaria over the next four years, according to a mathematical model published this week in PLOS Medicine by Peter Winskill of Imperial College London, UK, and colleagues.

Hidden properties of solids
UCSB physicists open the door to the first direct measurement of Berry curvature in solid matter.

Are patients sufficiently shielded against stray radiation during CT scans?
Radiation exposure during diagnostic imaging such as computed tomography (CT) contributes to a small, but potentially preventable percentage of cancers, yet a new study reports that 40 percent of hospitals surveyed do not routinely utilize CT shielding.

Gastric acid suppressant lansoprazole may target tuberculosis
A cheap and widely used drug, used to treat conditions such as heartburn, gastritis and ulcers, could work against the bacteria that cause tuberculosis (TB), according to new research published in PLOS Medicine, from UCL and the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine.

Ice shapes the landslide landscape on Mars
How good is your Martian geography? In a new research paper published in EPJ Plus, Fabio De Blasio and colleagues from Milano-Bicocca University, Italy, explain the extent to which ice may have been an important medium of lubrication for landslides on Mars.

Children with Alagille Syndrome have malformed bile ducts
Serious liver and heart problems can affect children with Alagille Syndrome early in life.

Moon's crust underwent resurfacing after forming from magma ocean
A research team led by The University of Texas at Austin Jackson School of Geosciences took to the lab to recreate the magmatic melt that once formed the lunar surface and uncovered new insights on how the modern moonscape came to be.

New genes discovered that influence the risk of allergic diseases
The world's largest study into allergies has shown that the genetic risk factors for atopic dermatitis (eczema), hay fever, and asthma are generally inherited together.

Poll: Most LGBTQ Americans report violence, threats, or sexual harassment
This report is part of a series titled 'Discrimination in America.' The series is based on a survey conducted for National Public Radio, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, and Harvard T.H.

How rogue immune cells cross the blood-brain barrier to cause multiple sclerosis
Drug designers working on therapeutics against multiple sclerosis should focus on blocking two distinct ways rogue immune cells attack healthy neurons, according to a new study in the journal Cell Reports.

Health of people with cystic fibrosis shows positive trends in US and Canada
Research comparing cystic fibrosis patients in the United States and Canada showed that, although patients' nutritional status and lung function improved in both countries from 1990 to 2013, the US improvement rate was faster.

Kaiser Permanente researchers reduce antibiotic prescriptions through physician education
Physicians at Kaiser Permanente in Southern California reduced the odds of prescribing an antibiotic for sinusitis by 22 percent using computer alerts to inform doctors when antibiotics may not be the best course of treatment.

Study calculates contribution of risk factors to cancer in the United States
A new American Cancer Society study calculates the contribution of several modifiable risk factors to cancer occurrence, expanding and clarifying the role of known risk factors, from smoking to low consumption of fruits and vegetables.

New discovery: Common jellyfish is actually two species
UD professor and alum discover sea nettle jellyfish found in Rehoboth and Chesapeake Bay is actually two species.

Bridging the gap
Researchers develop a potentially low-cost, low-emissions technology that can convert methane without forming carbon dioxide.

New human mobility prediction model offers scalability, requires less data
A new method to predict human mobility - which can be used to chart the potential spread of disease or determine rush hour bottlenecks -- has been developed by a team of researchers, including one from Arizona State University.

Simple test predicts diabetes remission following weight loss surgery
A new simple test that helps predicts which people with type 2 diabetes will benefit most from weight loss surgery has been developed by a UCL-led team.

UCLA engineers use deep learning to reconstruct holograms and improve optical microscopy
UCLA researchers report that they have developed new uses for deep learning: reconstructing a hologram to form a microscopic image of an object and improving optical microscopy.

Internists offer recommendations to improve CMS's approach to testing new payment models
While the American College of Physicians (ACP) is supportive of the role that the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation (CMMI) plays in the move toward value-based payment models, it has concerns about elements of its plans to test new payment models.

How disposable diapers can improve measurements of tumor growth
In pursuit of a better imaging phantom for improved tumor measurements, NIST scientists hit upon an effective but unconventional solution: injecting water into disposable diapers.

Researchers link post-right stroke delirium and spatial neglect to common brain mechanism
Stroke researchers at Kessler Foundation have proposed a theory for the high incidence of delirium and spatial neglect after right-brain stroke.

Drug could cut transplant rejection
A diabetes drug currently undergoing development could be repurposed to help end transplant rejection, without the side-effects of current immunosuppressive drugs, according to new research by Queen Mary University of London.

People willing to trade treatment efficacy for reduced side effects in cancer therapies
When choosing their preferred treatment, people with chronic lymphocytic leukemia place the highest value on medicines that deliver the longest progression-free survival, but are willing to swap some drug efficacy for a reduced risk of serious adverse events according to a study published online in Blood Advances, a Journal of the American Society of Hematology.

Climate change models of bird impacts pass the test
A major study looking at changes in where UK birds have been found over the past 40 years has validated the latest climate change models being used to forecast impacts on birds and other animals.

Researchers identify how bacterium survives in oxygen-poor environments
Columbia University biologists have revealed a mechanism by which bacterial cells in crowded, oxygen-deprived environments access oxygen for energy production, ensuring survival of the cell.

Researchers discover specific tumor environment that triggers cells to metastasize
A team of bioengineers and bioinformaticians at the University of California San Diego have discovered how the environment surrounding a tumor can trigger metastatic behavior in cancer cells.

New study points the way to therapy for rare cancer that targets the young
Scientists have engineered a mouse model to study a rare and often-fatal form of liver cancer.

Controlling diabetes with your phone might be possible someday
Nerve-stimulating procedures from ancient traditional acupuncture and the more modern electroacupuncture and neuromodulation relieves chronic pain, pelvic disorders and Parkinson's disease, and can be advantageous for treating inflammatory disorders like arthritis and deadly infections like sepsis.

New breast cell types discovered by multidisciplinary research team
A joint effort by breast cancer researchers and bioinformaticians has provided new insights into the molecular changes that drive breast development.

Pneumonia: Treatment with vaccines instead of antibiotics
A properly functioning immune system is key to resolve bacterial pneumonia.

Study shows how to get sprayed metal coatings to stick
Research from MIT reveals the best way to make metal particles stick to a surface in a spray-coating process.

Women's health has worsened while men's health has improved, trends since 1990 show
Swedish researchers have studied health trends among women and men aged 25-34 from 1990-2014.

Rainfall can indicate that mosquito-borne epidemics will occur weeks later
A new study demonstrates that outbreaks of mosquito-borne viruses Zika and Chikungunya generally occur about three weeks after heavy rainfall.

A dipstick that could transform disease diagnosis
Scientists have developed a revolutionary dipstick technology that allows DNA and RNA to be extracted from living organisms in as little as 30 seconds.

Baby-boomers and millennials more afflicted by the opioid epidemic
Baby-boomers, those born between 1947 and 1964, experienced an excess risk of prescription opioid overdose death and heroin overdose death, according to latest research at Columbia University's Mailman School of Public Health.

Diabetes-related mortality in Germany higher than expected
In Germany, nationwide data on mortality attributable to diagnosed diabetes are not available.

HIV-positive adults receive inferior cardiovascular care compared with those without HIV
People with both HIV and risk factors for heart disease and stroke were less likely to be treated with cholesterol-lowering statin drugs and aspirin than patients without HIV.

Preliminary stages of dementia reduce human face memorization ability
A Japanese research group has revealed that elderly people with mild cognitive impairment (MCI) have a particularly weakened ability to memorize human faces in the short term when compared to healthy elderly people. 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