Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

February 19, 2018
Lack of guidance may delay a child's first trip to the dentist
Without a doctor or dentist's guidance, some parents don't follow national recommendations for early dental care for their children, a new national poll finds.

Grey's Anatomy TV drama may be distorting public expectations of trauma care
The television drama, Grey's Anatomy, may be giving viewers a false impression of the realities of trauma care, including the speed at which patients recover after sustaining serious injuries, finds research published in the online journal Trauma Surgery & Acute Care Open.

Electric eel-inspired device reaches 110 volts
In an effort to create a power source for future implantable technologies, a team of researchers developed an electric eel-inspired device that produced 110 volts from gels filled with water, called hydrogels.

Unconventional superconductor may be used to create quantum computers of the future
With their insensitivity to decoherence what are known as Majorana particles could become stable building blocks of a quantum computer.

Fifteen new genes identified that shape our face
Researchers from KU Leuven (Belgium) and the universities of Pittsburgh, Stanford, and Penn State (US) have identified fifteen genes that determine our facial features.

Just a few minutes of light intensity exercise linked to lower death risk in older men
Clocking up just a few minutes at a time of any level of physical activity, including of light intensity, is linked to a lower risk of death in older men, suggests research published online in the British Journal of Sports Medicine.

Biodiversity loss raises risk of 'extinction cascades'
New research shows that the loss of biodiversity can increase the risk of 'extinction cascades', where an initial species loss leads to a domino effect of further extinctions.

First video of 'Dumbo' octopod hatchling shows that they look like mini-adults
Researchers who've gotten the first look at a deep-sea 'dumbo' octopod hatchling report in Current Biology on Feb.

Real-time Captcha technique improves biometric authentication
A new login authentication approach could improve the security of current biometric techniques that rely on video or images of users' faces.

How the brain responds to injustice
Punishing a wrongdoer may be more rewarding to the brain than supporting a victim.

How companies can restore trust after CEO misconduct
A new study published today in the Journal of Trust Research reveals how boards of directors can proactively address CEO misconduct to increase public trust towards an organization.

Pattern formation: The paradoxical role of turbulence
The formation of self-organizing molecular patterns in cells is a critical component of many biological processes.

Duplicate genes help animals resolve sexual conflict
Duplicate copies of a gene shared by male and female fruit flies have evolved to resolve competing demands between the sexes.

Earthquakes follow wastewater disposal patterns in southern Kansas
Wastewater created during oil and gas production and disposed of by deep injection into underlying rock layers is the probable cause for a surge in earthquakes in southern Kansas since 2013, a new report in the Bulletin of the Seismological Society of America concludes.

An enzyme's evolution from changing electric fields and resisting antibiotics
Bacteria can produce enzymes that make them resistant to antibiotics; one example is the TEM beta-lactamase enzyme, which enables bacteria to develop a resistance to beta-lactam antibiotics, such as penicillin and cephalosporins.

Computers aid discovery of new, inexpensive material to make LEDs with high color quality
Computers have helped researchers develop a new phosphor that can make LEDs cheaper and render colors more accurately.

Mouse model of intellectual disability isolates learning gene
Adult male mice lacking a gene linked to intellectual disability have trouble completing and remembering mazes, with no changes in social or repetitive behavior, according to new research published in JNeurosci.

Study looks at how newly discovered gene helps grow blood vessels
A new study published today found that a newly discovered gene helps grow blood vessels when it senses inadequate blood flow to tissues.

Calcium may play a role in the development of Parkinson's disease
Researchers have found that excess levels of calcium in brain cells may lead to the formation of toxic clusters that are the hallmark of Parkinson's disease.

Declines of specific animal species in tropical forests affect lowland western Amazonian tree communities
Human hunting of large Amazon rain forest animals -- such as spider monkeys, capuchin monkeys, tapirs and white-lipped peccaries, as well as some bird species such as guans and trumpeters -- is having an impact on the spatial distribution of seeds needed to produce future generations of trees, a new study shows.

Fake news 'vaccine': Online game may 'inoculate' by simulating propaganda tactics
A new experiment, launching today online, aims to help 'inoculate' against disinformation by providing a small dose of perspective from a

Global grazing lands increasingly vulnerable to a changing climate
A new study shows precipitation variability has increased significantly on 49 percent of the world's grazing lands.

TB vaccine trial results offer potential for BCG Revaccination, hope for subunit vaccines
Aeras, a nonprofit organization dedicated to developing vaccines against tuberculosis (TB), today announced results from an innovative clinical trial that provides encouraging new evidence that TB vaccines could prevent sustained infections in high-risk adolescents.

Plants colonized the earth 100 million years earlier than previously thought
A new study on the timescale of plant evolution, led by the University of Bristol, has concluded that the first plants to colonise the Earth originated around 500 million years ago -- 100 million years earlier than previously thought.

Hydroxychloroquine no more effective than placebo for relieving osteoarthritis hand pain
Hydroxychloroquine is no more effective than placebo for relieving moderate to severe hand pain and radiographic osteoarthritis.

Cellular recycling caught in the act
Scientists at the Center for Self-assembly and Complexity, within the Institute for Basic Science (IBS, South Korea), have observed a normal physiological process, called 'self-eating', that cells use to recycle their components.

Association of risk of death and cigar, pipe and cigarette use
Contemporary population estimates suggest that like cigarette-only smokers, current cigar-only and pipe-only smokers have a higher risk of dying from cancers known to be caused by tobacco, and cigarette and cigar smokers have a higher risk of death from any cause compared with people who never used tobacco.

In living color: Brightly-colored bacteria could be used to 'grow' paints and coatings
Researchers have unlocked the genetic code behind some of the brightest and most vibrant colors in nature.

Insulin goes viral
Scientists at Joslin Diabetes Center have identified four viruses that can produce insulin-like hormones that are active on human cells.

2016 junior doctor strikes in England had 'significant impact' on healthcare provision
The 2016 junior doctors strikes in England had a 'significant' impact on the provision of healthcare, with thousands of appointments cancelled, and significantly fewer admissions and A&E attendances than expected, reveals research published in the online journal BMJ Open.

Highly mutated protein in skin cancer plays central role in skin cell renewal
Researchers have shown for the first time that a key protein called KMT2D (and is often mutated in skin cancer) is involved in the epigenetic regulation of gene expression that guide skin cell turnover.

Reshaping drug tests
Researchers have improved on the currently available methods for screening drugs for heart-related side effects.

Pausing evolution makes bioproduction of chemicals affordable and efficient
Circumventing evolution in cell factories can pave the way for commercializing new biobased chemicals to large-scale.

Moderate and severe exacerbations accelerate physical activity decline in COPD patients
A study published in the European Respiratory Journal has shown that both moderate and severe exacerbations in COPD patients are associated with a decline in their physical activity level.

Study: Involving the public in water policies is key to successful municipal water systems
Informing residents about local water issues and involving them in local water policies are the keys to building healthy and resilient city water systems, according to a Portland State University study.

Social media to blame for poor grades?
Do teenagers who frequent Snapchat, Facebook, Instagram and other social media sites perform worse academically?

Chemical waves guide scientists to catalysts of the future
Waves are known in many very different forms; as water waves, light waves or sound waves.

C'mon electrons, let's do the twist!
Identifying right-handed and left-handed molecules is a crucial step for many applications in chemistry and pharmaceutics.

Study identifies traces of indigenous 'Taíno' in present-day Caribbean populations
A thousand-year-old tooth has provided the first clear genetic evidence that the Taíno -- the indigenous people whom Columbus first encountered on arriving in the New World -- still have living descendants today, despite erroneous claims in some historical narratives that these people are extinct.

Flexible warped nanographene developed for bioimaging
An international team of scientists has developed a water-soluble 'warped nanographene', a flexible molecule that is biocompatible and shows promise for fluorescent cell imaging.

Continental interiors may not be as tectonically stable as geologists think
A University of Illinois-led team has identified unexpected geophysical signals underneath tectonically stable interiors of South America and Africa.

Unique role of gender is featured in Circulation journal's Go Red For Women issue focused on women's heart health
The second Go Red For Women issue of Circulation, a journal of the American Heart Association, features eleven original articles and research letters dedicated to women's heart health.

The effect of the GDNF on the activity of neural networks during hypoxic damage has been studied
Searching for ways to reduce losses from ischemic stroke, a major problem worldwide, is an extremely important task for many areas of public health and economy.

Infection site affects how a virus spreads through the body
A person is more likely to get infected by HIV through anal intercourse than vaginal, but no one knows quite why.

Sleep problems in menopause linked to hot flashes, depression -- and may not last
A new study of middle-aged women found that sleep problems vary across the stages of menopause, yet are consistently correlated with hot flashes and depression.

College roommates underestimate each other's distress, new psychology research shows
College roommates are sensitive to their roommates' distress but tend to underestimate the level of distress being experienced by others.

New software helps detect adaptive genetic mutations
Brown University researchers have developed a new machine learning technique that can track down beneficial mutations in population genetic datasets.

Spatial perception of odorants in cockroaches
A recent study involving researchers from the University of Konstanz has described the first neural architecture capable of encoding the spatial location of odorants.

Laboratory study shows that father's age can affect offspring lifespan
How does the father's age at conception affect his children?

Unprecedented single-digit-nanometer magnetic tunnel junction demonstrated
Researchers have developed ultra-small magnetic tunnel junctions with high retention properties for use in semiconductor technologies.

How the insulin receptor works
Researchers from the Helmholtz Zentrum München at the University Hospital Carl Gustav Carus of TU Dresden together with colleagues from Rockefeller University New York succeeded for the first time in the visualization of the insulin receptor activation.

One in four emergency staff abused by patients
The experience of hospital A&E staff reveals that they have resigned themselves to patient violence and aggression.

Researchers achieve 'Olympic ring' molecule breakthrough just in time for Winter Games
More than 7,000 miles away from the snowcapped peaks of PyeongChang, scientists from FSU's Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry unlocked a novel strategy for synthesizing a highly versatile molecule called olympicene -- a compound of carbon and hydrogen atoms named for its familiar Olympic ring shape.

You are what you eat: Diet-specific adaptations in vampire bats
Vampire bats feed exclusively on blood. It has therefore been long suspected that they have highly specific evolutionary adaptations and most likely also an unusual microbiome.

Farming crops with rocks to reduce CO2 and improve global food security
Farming crops with crushed rocks could help to improve global food security and reduce the amount of CO2 entering the atmosphere, a new study has found.

Electrical implant reduces 'invisible' symptoms of man's spinal cord injury
An experimental treatment that sends electrical currents through the spinal cord has improved 'invisible' yet debilitating side effects for a Canadian man with a spinal cord injury.

Dispersal of fish eggs by water birds -- just a myth?
How do fish end up in isolated bodies of water when they can't swim there themselves?

Autonomous vehicles improve traffic flow
Improvements in traffic flow and fuel consumption are boosted when even a few autonomous vehicles are immersed in bulk traffic, according to research by Rutgers University-Camden mathematics scholar Benedetto Piccoli.

Physical exercise reduces risk of developing diabetes -- study
Exercising more reduces the risk of diabetes and could see seven million fewer diabetic patients across mainland China, Hong Kong and Taiwan, according to new research.

'Brain on a chip' reveals how the brain folds
Our brains are already wrinkled like walnuts by the time we are born.

Team identify genetic targets for autism spectrum disorder
Early detection of autism in children is key to producing the best outcomes; however, searching for the genetic causes of autism is complicated by various symptoms found within the spectrum.

Astronomers reveal secrets of most distant supernova ever detected
An international team of astronomers led by the University of Southampton has confirmed the discovery of the most distant supernova ever detected -- a huge cosmic explosion that took place 10.5 billion years ago, or three-quarters the age of the Universe itself.

Robotic crystals that walk n' roll
Scientists at Waseda University have developed robotic crystals that walk slowly like an inchworm and roll 20,000 times faster than its walking speed.

New algorithm can pinpoint mutations in large sections of the human gen
A team of scientists has developed an algorithm that can accurately pinpoint, in large regions of the human genome, mutations favored by natural selection.

Phase-transition cubic gallium nitride doubles ultraviolet emission efficiency
The Innovative COmpound semiconductoR Laboratory team led by Professor Can Bayram, of the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, has published a well-received paper titled 'High internal quantum efficiency ultraviolet emission from phase-transition cubic GaN integrated on nanopatterned Si(100).'

Cracking the genetic code for complex traits in cattle
The global 1000 Bull Genomes Consortium identified the genetic basis for accurately predicting the complex trait of height across cattle and dairy breeds by pooling large genomic datasets and phenotypes collected from 58,000 cattle.

Researchers discover novel mechanism linking changes in mitochondria to cancer cell death
Researchers at the University of Notre Dame discovered that the activation of a specific enzyme may help suppress the spread of tumors.

Jymmin: How a combination of exercise and music helps us feel less pain
Pain is essential for survival. However, it could also slow rehabilitation, or could become a distinct disorder.

Unique chemistry that could help fight disease, found in NZ glowworm
University of Otago researchers in New Zealand have helped uncover how New Zealand glowworms produce their glow.

Workplace alcohol not always a perk for recent college grads seeking jobs
Offering alcohol to employees in the workplace may be a trendy perk of employment, but it doesn't appear to be an enticement for recent college graduates just entering the workforce, new research published today from Oregon State University shows.

Mobile health applications put the personal data of millions of users at risk
This is the finding of a European study started in 2016 and involving Agustí Solanas, head of the Smart Health research group at the URV's Department of Computer Engineering and Mathematics, and researchers from the University of Piraeus (Greece) headed by Constantinos Patsakis. 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