Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

February 05, 2018
Trains, planes, automobiles and heart disease
Noise may disrupt the body on the cellular level in a way that increases the risk of common heart disease risk factors, according to a review topic published today in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology that examined the underlying mechanisms that may lead to noise-induced heart disease.

Clemson researchers blaze new ground in wireless energy generation
Researchers at the Clemson Nanomaterials Institute have developed a wireless energy source that generates electricity from simple mechanical motion, such as the waves in the ocean, the tap of a foot or the clap of a hand.

Moffitt researchers identify new target to reduce risk of GVHD
Moffitt Cancer Center researchers are trying to identify new drug targets to reduce the risk of GVHD.

Late-year change in income tax rate leads to billions in unexpected profits and losses
In a paper being published Feb. 5 in Tax Notes, professors from Indiana University and the University of Virginia report that Tax Cuts and Jobs Act this could result in unexpected drops in earnings for two thirds of companies in the Standard & Poor's 500, with a median drop of $100 million.

Severe pre-eclampsia often leads to undetected high blood pressure after pregnancy
Hypertension commonly occurs in the year following pregnancy among women who had severe pre-eclampsia during pregnancy.

Novel genetic variants for ADHD linked to educational attainment
A study published in the February 2018 issue of the Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry (JAACAP) reports that five novel genetic variants associated with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) have been identified by exploiting genetic overlap between ADHD and educational attainment.

Toddler formulas and milks -- not recommended by health experts -- mislead with health claims
Misleading labeling on formulas and milks marketed as 'toddler drinks' may confuse parents about their healthfulness or necessity, finds a new study by researchers at the NYU College of Global Public Health and the Rudd Center for Food Policy & Obesity at the University of Connecticut.

Autism might be better detected using new two-minute questionnaire
Researchers at Rutgers New Jersey Medical School have developed a two-minute questionnaire for parents that could help pediatricians and other primary care providers detect autism in toddlers, at a time when intervention might be crucial.

Parental enrollment in Medicaid yields increase in preventive health care for children
Enrolling in Medicaid may have health benefits not only for low-income parents but also for their children, according to a Johns Hopkins analysis of over 50,000 parent-child pairs

Diabetes doubles chance of developing cataract
People with diabetes are twice as likely to develop cataract as the general population and the relative risk is highest in those aged between 45 and 54, according to a new study published in the journal Eye.

A clonal crayfish from nature as a model for tumors
A genome study has proven that all specimen of Marmorkrebs, or marbled crayfish, originate from a single female.

Meditation has limited role in making you a better person, says study
New research has suggested meditation's role in making individuals better people is limited.

New technology for accelerated wound healing discovered
Researchers at Uppsala University and SLU have found a new way of accelerating wound healing.

Ridesharing may not reduce number of missed medical appointments, Penn study finds
The high number of low-income patients missing medical appointments because of unreliable transportation has led to partnerships between health care systems and ridesharing companies, such as Uber and Lyft, in an effort to ease travel and boost attendance.

Novel research approach sheds light on how midsize predators interact
A novel research approach has resulted in a key step toward better protecting the fisher, an important forest predator that findings show is the dominant small carnivore when present.

Loved one's death could spur aggressive measures against breast cancer
A woman's memories of a loved one's experience with cancer could play a significant role in how she approaches breast cancer prevention in her own life, a new study has found.

Climate variability -- past and future
On the basis of a unique global comparison of data from core samples extracted from the ocean floor and the polar ice sheets, AWI researchers have now demonstrated that, though climate changes have indeed decreased around the globe from glacial to interglacial periods, the difference is by no means as pronounced as previously assumed (Nature advanced online publication).

Health indicators for newborns of breast cancer survivors may vary by cancer type
In a study published in the International Journal of Cancer, researchers from the UNC Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center analyzed health indicators for children born to young breast cancer survivors in North Carolina.

Research reveals more about TRAPPIST-1 planets, and the possibility of life
A series of four studies have shed new light on the properties of the TRAPPIST-1 planetary system, currently our most optimal hope for evidence of biological life beyond the solar system.

Patients with kidney disease with heart defibrillators at greater risk of hospitalization
In a study of nearly 6,000 community-based patients with chronic kidney disease and heart failure, the use of implantable cardioverter defibrillators was associated with a significantly increased risk of subsequent hospitalization.

Half of all dementias start with damaged 'gatekeeper cells'
USC research sheds new light on how a breakdown in the brain's vascular system predates the accumulation of toxic plaques and tangles in the brain that bring about Alzheimer's disease.

A new path into bipolar disorder comes to light
A new article authored by an international group of researchers reveals a novel potential drug target for bipolar disorder and offers new insights into the underlying biology of this lifelong and devastating mental illness.

Hubble delivers first insight into atmospheres of potentially habitable TRAPPIST-1 planets
An international team of astronomers has used the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope to look for atmospheres around four Earth-sized planets orbiting within or near TRAPPIST-1's habitable zone.

New alien species invasions still rising globally
Up to 16 percent of all species on Earth could qualify as potential alien species and if they invade new regions, impacts will be difficult to predict, according to new research involving UCL.

Inadequate follow-up for many cardiac arrest patients
A major international study shows that if cardiac arrest patients are treated like heart attack patients only, this will potentially have negative consequences on their rehabilitation and return to working life.

Dissatisfaction in three dimensions
In a paper published in the Clothing and Textiles Research Journal, Jessica Ridgway, an assistant professor of retail entrepreneurship in the Jim Moran School of Entrepreneurship, asserts that mood and body satisfaction can take major hits after viewing oneself represented as a 3-D avatar.

BU: Police shootings reflect structural racism
The deaths of Trayvon Martin, Tamir Rice, Sandra Bland, Michael Brown, and other unarmed black victims at the hands of police sparked a national conversation about racism and policing, from the Black Lives Matter movement to kneeling NFL players.

Effects of climate change can complicate the politics of military bases, study finds
Using an abandoned U.S. military base in Greenland as a case study, new Brown research explores how the impact of climate change on domestic and overseas military bases could cause a host of political and diplomatic problems.

Baby, it's cold outside: understanding conditions for star formation
Researchers demonstrate how a gas escapes ice at an extremely cold temperature, providing insight about how stars form in interstellar clouds.

Opioid cessation may be more successful when depression is treated
Opioid cessation in non-cancer pain may be more successful when depression is treated to remission, a Saint Louis University study shows.

A majority of middle-aged people show a high level of mental well-being
A recent study at the University of Jyväskylä has found a surprisingly high level of mental well-being among middle-aged individuals.

Reducing the footprint of a greenhouse gas more potent than carbon dioxide
USC scientists have unlocked a new, more efficient pathway for converting one of our most potent greenhouse gases directly into basic chemicals for manufacturing plastics, agrochemicals and pharmaceuticals.

New ethics committee aims to help veterinarians navigate complex care situations
Clinicians and researchers from North Carolina State University and Duke University have developed a first-of-its-kind veterinary medical ethics committee to aid care providers in navigating complex care situations.

Farm sunshine, not cancer: Replacing tobacco fields with solar arrays
Michigan Tech researchers contend that tobacco farmers could increase profits by converting their land to solar farms, which in turn provides renewable energy generation.

New 'Tomato Expression Atlas' dives deep into the fruit's flesh
Researchers at BTI, Cornell and USDA published a spatiotemporal map of gene expression across all tissues and developmental stages of the tomato fruit - the genetic information underlying how a fruit changes from inside to out as it ripens.

Research on global surface ozone levels shows populations most affected by air pollution
Research led by the Universities of Leicester and Edinburgh and 12 other research institutions into surface ozone levels that are important for human health.

Dim light may make us dumber
Spending too much time in dimly lit rooms and offices may actually change the brain's structure and hurt one's ability to remember and learn, indicates groundbreaking research by Michigan State University neuroscientists.

UTIA research examines long-term economic impact of cover crops
A team of researchers from the University of Tennessee Institute of Agriculture examined data from the past 29 years to determine whether it is profitable to include cover crops in an erosion management strategy.

Soil characteristics may be related to chronic wasting disease persistence, study finds
Deer infected with chronic wasting disease are doomed to a slow and certain death, eventually wasting away as they lose the ability to eat and drink.

UF reports 2017 as average year for worldwide shark attacks, deaths
Throughout his more than 40-year career at the University of Florida, George Burgess gained an international reputation with the media and public as a reliable source and shark attack expert who always stressed the importance of shark conservation.

Islands in yeast membrane revealed by extreme microscopy
University of Groningen microbiologists have visualized tiny islands in the cell membrane of baker's yeast.

Scientists find massive reserves of mercury hidden in permafrost
Researchers have discovered permafrost in the northern hemisphere stores massive amounts of natural mercury, a finding with significant implications for human health and ecosystems worldwide.

Scientists target glioma cancer stem cells, which could improve patient survival
Brain tumors are responsible for 25 percent of cancer-related deaths in children and young adults.

Adding crizotinib to radiation therapy may help preserve hearing in patients with NF2
A Massachusetts General Hospital research team reports that the use of crizotinib to block a specific molecular pathway both enhanced the radiosensitivity of tumors in mouse models of NF2, allowing a reduction in radiation dosage, and inhibited the growth of cultured tumor cells from NF2 patients.

How viruses disarm the immune system
How do viruses that cause chronic infections, such as HIV or hepatitis c virus, manage to outsmart their hosts' immune systems?

Drugs sold in india pose a global threat to antibiotic resistance control
Millions of unapproved antibiotics are being sold in India each year, according to a new study published in the British Journal of Clinical Pharmacology.

Conservation stories from the front lines
A new collection, 'Conservation Stories from the Front Lines,' publishing between Feb.

Professor Ute Scholl discovers genetic cause of rare high blood pressure syndrome
Twenty-five years ago, an unusual inherited form of high blood pressure was first described in an Australian family.

North American ice sheet decay decreased climate variability in the Southern Hemisphere
The changing topography of ice sheets in the Northern Hemisphere during the last Ice Age forced changes in the climate of Antarctica, a previously undocumented inter-polar climate change mechanism.

TRAPPIST-1: Findings show exoplanets made of rock and water
In 2016, a team of researchers led by EU-funded astronomer Michael Gillon at the University of Liege, Belgium, discovered three temperate Earth-sized planets orbiting TRAPPIST-1, an ultra-cool dwarf star just 40 light years from Earth.

Oxidation behavior of crude oil and SARA fractions
During the last several months, the Lab has managed to conduct tests of oxidation of SARA fractions (saturates, aromatics, resins, and asphaltenes).

Exposure to chemical found in plastics 'hard to avoid' in everyday life
86 per cent of teenagers have traces of Bisphenol A (BPA), a chemical compound used to make plastics, in their body, an Engaged Research public engagement project in collaboration with the University of Exeter has found.

Researchers solve a materials mystery key to next-generation electronic devices
Writing today in the journal Nature Materials, Chang-Beom Eom and his collaborators provided evidence of a hole gas coexisting with two-dimensional electron gas.

Studies reveal looming shortage of rheumatologists
Two new articles provide insights on the outlook of rheumatology in the United States, noting that the need for rheumatologists will greatly exceed the projected growth over the next 15 years.

PSMA PET/CT clearly differentiates prostate cancer from benign tissue
Using nuclear medicine, German researchers have found a way to accurately differentiate cancerous tissue from healthy tissue in prostate cancer patients.

Aging immune system may explain age-related cancer risk increase
Study published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences suggests aging immune system plays a larger role in cancer incidence than previously thought.

Smart new method to manufacture organic solar cells
The ability to use cheap materials and simple manufacturing methods are two huge advantages of printed organic solar cells.

Changing weather patterns throwing ecosystems out of whack
Species' lifecycles are slowly growing out of alignment, which can affect the functioning of ecosystems, ultimately impacting human food supply and disease.

Small birds have more efficient wing strokes than bats
Small birds are more energy-efficient than bats when flying. Researchers previously believed this was due to air resistance created by the bats' ears.

Research presents new information about the Flint water crisis
The Flint Area Community Health and Environment Partnership research team found that the majority of Legionnaires' disease cases that occurred during the 2014-15 outbreak in Genesee County, Mich., can be attributed to the change in of the City of Flint's drinking water supply to the Flint River.

Scientists explain the impacts of aerosol radiative forcing
Aerosol optical properties and direct radiative effects on surface irradiance were examined using seven years (2006-2012) of Cimel sunphotometer data collected at Panyu--the main atmospheric composition monitoring station in the Pearl River Delta (PRD) region of China.

Fabricating nanocrystalline diamonds to study materials under extreme conditions
A nanocrystalline diamond built by plasma vapor deposition has already produced a pressure nearly two times greater than that found at the center of the Earth.

Researchers take important step toward gonorrhea vaccine
Researchers are paving the way toward a new therapeutic approach for gonorrhea by shedding light on the mechanism behind important proteins on the Neisseria gonorrhoeae bacteria's outer membrane.

Texas A&M develops new type of powerful battery
Move over, lithium-ion; now, there's a better battery on the horizon.

Regular physical activity is associated with better lung function among smokers
The results of this ISGlobal study strengthen the epidemiological evidence supporting a link between physical activity and respiratory health

Weight loss surgery improves microvascular complications in obese diabetic patients
In a BJS (British Journal of Surgery) analysis of published studies in obese patients with type 2 diabetes, researchers found that weight loss surgery helps prevent the development of microvascular complications--which affect small blood vessels--better than medical treatment.

New insight into the molecular weapons of the plant microbiome
In a study published in the Feb. 2 issue of the Journal of Biological Chemistry, researchers at McMaster University in Canada pinpointed the identity of a toxin used by a soil-dwelling bacterium that protects plants from disease.

Uncovering the hidden roles management partners play in ACOs
In the first study of the role of management partners in ACOs, Dartmouth Institute researchers used data from the National Survey of Accountable Care Organizations to examine the prevalence of non-provider management partner involvement in ACOs, the services these partners provide, and the structure of ACOs that have such partners.

What magnets have to do with pistachios
A study using thousands of pistachio trees shows that ecological systems can be governed by the Ising model, which is typically used to explain permanent magnets.

TRAPPIST-1 planets probably rich in water
A new study has found that planets orbiting the star TRAPPIST-1 are made mostly of rock, and some could hold more water than Earth.

Understanding pain exacerbation with Opioid use
A new study published in JNeurosci advances understanding of how the potent opioid analgesic fentanyl can increase pain sensitivity in animals.

An enzyme variant reduces cardiac hypertrophy and improves heart function
Scientists at the Centro Nacional de Investigaciones Cardiovasculares Carlos III (CNIC) have identified a variant of the enzyme calcineurin, called CnAβ1, whose action reduces cardiac hypertrophy and improves heart function.

New research calls for rethink on approach to treating NTDs in urban areas
New research published today in The Lancet Infectious Diseases, suggests the effectiveness of large-scale distribution of medication (known as Mass Drug Administration or MDA) to treat lymphatic filariasis (LF) in urban areas needs to be re-examined.

Following treatment guidelines more important than volume for assessing heart failure care
Looking at how well hospitals adhere to treatment guidelines for heart failure is more important than comparing patient volumes at hospitals, new research shows.

Altering Huntington's patients' skin cells into brain cells sheds light on disease
Scientists at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis have transformed skin cells from patients with Huntington's disease into the type of brain cell affected by the disorder.

New research suggests your immune system can protect against MRSA infections
After years of investigation, researchers at Johns Hopkins, the University of California, Davis, and the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases have discovered how the immune system might protect a person from recurrent bacterial skin infections caused by Staphylococcus aureus (staph).

Dye kills malaria parasites at speed not seen before
Research shows that the dye methylene blue is a safe antimalarial that kills malaria parasites at an unprecedented rate.

A good life for all within the planet's means
A study led by the University of Leeds has found that no country currently meets its citizens' basic needs at a globally sustainable level of resource use.

Detecting and treating dnDSA early preserves allograft function
Monitoring and treating de novo donor-specific antibodies before they could cause graft damage helped to decrease dnDSA in a majority of pediatric kidney transplant recipients at Children National Health System and prevented graft failure in the first few years.

Tests on airway tissue reveal glo vapour has minimal impact compared to smoke
Scientists at British American Tobacco used state-of-the-art genomic testing to assess human air-way tissue exposed to glo vapour.

New study sheds light on the the dark side of Hong Kong's most lucrative seafood trade
Hong Kong is the global hub for the more than USD 1 billion Live Reef Food Fish Trade (LRFFT), much of it unreported and unregulated with serious consequences for vulnerable species, food security and livelihoods in Southeast Asia.

Do companies need corporate universities?
Researchers at the Higher School of Economics, International Laboratory of Intangible-driven Economy, have examined the role of corporate universities in developing human capital and improving performance.

Type 2 diabetes: The costs of treating complications
Scientists at the Helmholtz Zentrum München have examined health insurance data of more than 300,000 people with diabetes in Germany.

The toxic relationship between ALS and frontotemporal dementia
ALS and frontotemporal dementia (FTD) are two neurodegenerative diseases with a toxic relationship, according to a new USC Stem Cell study published in Nature Medicine.

Building a future in science with construction-based toys
Childhood play experiences strongly shape a person's spatial skills, according to a new CIRES-led study--those skills can be critical to success in fields like science and engineering.

An underestimated threat: Land-based pollution with microplastics
Tiny plastic particles also present a threat to creatures on land and may have damaging effects similar or even more problematic than in our oceans.

Online tool speeds up evolution education
The biology teacher's pedagogical toolbox is evolving. Bright colors, replicating computer code and a digital petri dish bring evolution science to life for students.

Scientists report big improvements in HIV vaccine production
Research on HIV has led to many promising ideas for vaccines to prevent infection by the AIDS virus, but very few candidate vaccines have been tested in clinical trials.

For world's poorest, vaccines prevent deaths, medical impoverishment
Vaccines have enormous impact not just on health, but on keeping people out of poverty, according to a new study led by researchers from Harvard T.H.

Mixed-use developments may actually reduce housing affordability, social diversity
Making the buildings in neighbourhoods more diverse through mixed residential and commercial developments also makes it too expensive for many people to live in.

What makes a good egg?
In approximately 15 percent of cases where couples are unable to conceive, the underlying cause of infertility is not known.

An enhanced recovery program reduced total hospital costs and improved patient outcomes
A standardized protocol for managing patients immediately before, during, and after colorectal operations not only improved clinical outcomes, it also significantly reduced overall hospital costs.

Researchers create fiber optic sensors that dissolve in the body
For the first time, researchers have fabricated sensing elements known as fiber Bragg gratings inside optical fibers designed to dissolve completely inside the body.

Mapping the first family tree for tropical forests
More than 100 researchers have collaborated to classify the world's tropical forests according to their evolutionary history, a process that will help researchers predict the resilience or susceptibility of different forests to global environmental changes.

Zika brain damage may go undetected in pregnancy
Zika virus may cause significant damage to the fetal brain even when the baby's head size is normal, according to a primate study.

Controlling fire ants with natural compounds
New research published in eNeuro has identified natural, plant-derived that repel fire ants.

Despite potential for revenue gains, Medicare's annual wellness visit unevenly adopted
In 2011, Medicare introduced the annual wellness visit -- a yearly check-up for Medicare beneficiaries at no cost to the patient -- but many practices have been slow to offer the visits.

A new way of generating ultra-short bursts of light
A close relative of the laser has been confined to the lab due to its finicky nature, but a recent discovery may now bring the technology into a range of applications from health care to environmental science.

Ray-finned fishes: Natural born survivors
Scientists from the University of Bristol have revealed that ray-finned fishes are perhaps one of Earth's most resilient groups of animals, having survived four mass extinction events that wiped out many other groups.

Controlling quantum interactions in a single material
By demonstrating that multiple quantum interactions can coexist and be controlled in a single material, researchers open the door for ultrafast, low-power electronics and quantum computers.

Cellular models of fetal intestinal tissue may help combat deadly neonatal disease
Cellular models of fetal and adult intestinal tissues generated by investigators from MassGeneral Hospital for Children have identified differences in the immune response to natural intestinal bacteria at different developmental ages.

How brain's reward system lessened distress over 2016 election results
Some people disturbed by the 2016 presidential election have suffered a loss of appetite, trouble sleeping and concentrating, and have become easily annoyed, while others equally disturbed by the election result have not suffered such symptoms of depression.

Vanadium dioxyde: A revolutionary material for tomorrow's electronics
Vanadium dioxide's unique properties make it perfect for outperforming silicon and giving rise to a new generation of low-power electronic devices.

UA Cancer Center team targets tumor suppressor to treat 'triple-negative' breast cancer
A team led by UA Cancer Center researchers Agnieszka Witkiewicz, MD, and Erik Knudsen, PhD, screened for drugs that could target triple-negative breast cancer tumors, producing several new therapeutic candidates for this difficult-to-treat cancer.

NASA finds wind shear tearing Tropical Cyclone Cebile apart
NASA's Aqua satellite passed over the Southern Pacific Ocean and found that wind shear was adversely affecting Tropical Cyclone Cebile.

Substances used in household goods affect the immune system of a coastal mussel
In a study published in Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry, researchers from National University of Singapore have determined how perfluoalkyl substances (PFAS) affect the immune system of green mussels.

The discovery of a third form of flagella-mediated motility shown by symbiotic bacteria
Research Key Points - The Burkholderia symbiont of bean bugs swims by wrapping its rotary structure, called a flagellar filament, around its cell body.

Reversing severe bone loss
Researchers have identified a treatment for a rare bone loss disorder that might also lead to help for aging brittle bones.

Super-adsorbent MOF to control humidity
A metal-organic framework that can take up twice its weight in water and then release it when humidity falls.

Risk assessment tool can now better predict pressure injuries in children
Pressure-related skin injuries, a nurse-sensitive quality indicator in hospitals, are associated with increased morbidity and higher costs of care.

Long-term usage of inhaled corticosteroids may increase risk of bone fractures in patients with COPD
A study published in the February journal CHEST® suggests long-term inhaled corticosteroids (ICS) in patients with COPD may increase risk of bone fractures in both men and women.

Fish study IDs genes that regulate social behaviors
Genes in an area of the brain that is relatively similar in fish, humans and all vertebrates appear to regulate how organisms coordinate and shift their behaviors, according to a new Cornell study.

Powerful new dataset reveals patterns of global ozone pollution
Although ozone pollution is dropping across many parts of the United States, western Europe and Japan, many people living in those countries still experience more than a dozen days every year in which levels of the lung irritant exceed health-based standards.

Premature babies make fewer friends -- but not for long
Premature babies make fewer friends, feel less accepted by peers and spend less time socialising in early childhood -- but this improves when they get to school -- according to new research by an international research collaboration, including the University of Warwick, UK.

Why nerve cells die in ALS and frontotemporal dementia
Scientists have for the first time discovered a mechanism that limits the number of 'cellular janitors' in the nervous system, leading to increased risk for two neurodegenerative diseases: amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) and frontotemporal dementia, according to a Keck School of Medicine of USC study published today in Nature Medicine.

Round-the-clock power from smart bowties
Innovative diode design uses ultrafast quantum tunneling to harvest infrared energy from the environment.

Remarkable spider with a tail found preserved in amber after 100 million years
An extraordinary new species of arachnid, resembling a spider with a tail, has been discovered in amber from Myanmar of mid-Cretaceous age, around 100 million years ago.

New approach could quickly identify best organic solar cell mixtures
An international team of researchers has discovered a new quantitative relation that allows for quick identification of promising material combinations for organic solar cells.

New evidence shows potential of two drugs to block malaria transmission
An international team of researchers has shown that two different compounds-one, an older malaria drug, the other a common laboratory dye with known antimalarial properties-can safely and effectively be added to treatment regimens to block transmission of the most common form of malaria in Africa.

New study underscores tuberculosis risk for working elephants
Morris Animal Foundation-funded researchers recently found approximately 17 percent of working African elephants at several Zimbabwe ecotourism facilities tested positive for tuberculosis antibodies.

Ants: Master manipulators for biodiversity, or sweet treats
Symbiotic ants manipulate aphid reproduction rates to achieve a specific mix of green and red aphids, maintaining the inferior green aphids which produce the ants' favorite snack. 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