Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

March 05, 2018
Provide stroke patients with palliative care support minus the label
When caring for stroke patients, health care providers should focus on the social and emotional issues facing patients, rather than only physical rehabilitation, according to a new study published in CMAJ (Canadian Medical Association Journal).

Stem cell 'twins' to study disease
Researchers report a new gene editing method that can modify a single DNA base in the human genome with absolute precision.

New national guideline sets out best practices for treating opioid addiction
A new Canadian guideline for managing opioid use disorders lays out the optimal strategies for the treatment of opioid addiction, including recommending opioid agonist treatment with buprenorphine-naloxone as the preferred first-line treatment.

Nerve cells found to suppress immune response during deadly lung infections
Neurons that carry nerve signals to and from the lungs suppress immune response during fatal lung infections with the bacterium Staphylococcus aureus.

TSRI researchers uncover culprit in Parkinson's brain cell die-off
Researchers investigate the connection between misfolded proteins and the destruction of mitochondria in neurons.

Why US policies for dyslexia should be scrapped
Many of the current US Federal and State dyslexia laws should be scrapped as they ignore scientific evidence and privilege some poor readers at the expense of huge numbers of others, according to a leading expert in reading disability.

'Fighting my cancer as much as possible': Why many patients join phase 1 clinical trials
'Fighting my cancer as much as possible' is why many patients participate in early stage clinical trials, according to research presented at the TAT (Targeted Anticancer Therapies) International Congress 2018 in Paris, France.

Potential new approach to the treatment of multiple sclerosis
A prospective new method of treating patients with multiple sclerosis has been proposed by researchers of the Mainz University Medical Center working in cooperation with researchers of the University of Montreal.

Method to predict drug stability could lead to more effective medicines
Researchers from the UK and Denmark have developed a new method to predict the physical stability of drug candidates, which could help with the development of new and more effective medicines for patients.

Study: Retaining talent is paramount for successful firm acquisitions
A recent UT Dallas study found that when acquiring firms avoid the exodus of scientists from the target firms, their likelihood of creating highly impactful knowledge increases.

Millennials are not adequately saving for retirement, MU study finds
In a new study, researchers from the University of Missouri found that only 37.2 percent of working millennials have retirement accounts, demonstrating a need for increased financial education for retirement.

New dual-atom catalyst shows promise to yield clean energy by artificial photosynthesis
An international team of researchers from the US and China has synthesized a dispersed catalyst featuring two atoms, yielding a stable and highly active platform that could facilitate solar water oxidation for the production and storage of clean energy, the team reports in the latest Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Parent mentors improve Latino children's health insurance coverage rates
Latino children have the highest uninsured rate in the United States.

Suicide prevention: Choosing the right word
A new study reveals the impact of the associative meaning of a single word on how readers subsequently view and refer to suicide.

Massive astrophysical objects governed by subatomic equation
Surprisingly, a quintessential equation of quantum mechanics emerges while studying astronomical disks of orbiting material.

Plants share defensive proteins in evolutionary pick 'n' mix
Published in Genome Biology, novel research has shed further light on how plants can use 'baits' to recognise and trap disease-causing pathogens before infection can take hold.

Dietary sodium's impact may not be offset by other aspects of a diet
An international study suggests other aspects of the diet may not offset the harmful effect of sodium on blood pressure.

'Filter' hones GWAS results to help researchers avoid dead ends
A genetics research team at Johns Hopkins Medicine has solved a dilemma facing researchers who use genomewide association studies (GWAS) by developing a new approach that strategically 'filters' which genes are worth further study.

Rice team designs lens-free fluorescent microscope
Rice University engineers are developing their FlatScope as a fluorescent microscope able to capture three-dimensional data and produce images from anywhere within the field.

Preschoolers exposed to nighttime light lack melatonin
A new study from University of Colorado Boulder found that preschoolers exposed to bright light at bedtime had an 88 percent reduction in melatonin levels.

Researchers convert CO to CO2 with a single metal atom
Researchers from Washington State University and Tufts University have demonstrated for the first time that a single metal atom can act as a catalyst in converting carbon monoxide into carbon dioxide, a chemical reaction that is commonly used in catalytic converters to remove harmful gases from car exhaust.

127-million-year-old baby bird fossil sheds light on avian evolution
The tiny fossil of a prehistoric baby bird is helping scientists understand how early avians came into the world in the Age of Dinosaurs.

Healthy diet may not offset high salt intake
A healthy diet may not offset the effects of a high salt intake on blood pressure, suggests a new study.

Reviewers of NIH grants cannot distinguish the good from the great
NIH invested more than $27 billion in biomedical research through competitive grants during its 2017 fiscal year, based on scores assigned by, and conversation between, expert peer reviewers.

UMBC physicists show interactions between smoke and clouds have unexpected cooling effect
Atomspheric physicists have found that the way wildfire smoke from Africa interacts with clouds over the Atlantic Ocean results in a net cooling effect, which is contrary to previous understanding and has implications for global climate models.

UTSA researchers want to teach computers to learn like humans
A new study by Paul Rad, assistant director of the UTSA Open Cloud Institute, and Nicole Beebe, Melvin Lachman Distinguished Professor in Entrepreneurship and director of the UTSA Cyber Center for Security and Analytics, describes a new cloud-based learning platform for artificial intelligence (A.I.) that teaches machines to learn like humans.

How a yeast cell helps crack open the 'black box' behind artificial intelligence
UC San Diego School of Medicine researchers developed a visible neural network and used it to build DCell, a virtual model of a functioning brewer's yeast cell.

Deep-sea fish choose habitat according to genotype, new research says
Scientists have found evidence of natural selection in a deep-sea fish species adapting to the depth of ocean that it inhabits.

Advanced spatial planning models could promise new era of sustainable ocean development
Researchers have developed a novel marine spatial planning strategy that accounts for and quantifies relevant environmental, industrial and societal interests in formulating optimized, sustainable spatial plans.

Models show how to limit global temperature rise to 1.5°C
There are several ways to limit global temperature rise to 1.5°C by 2100, and new research led by IIASA researcher Joeri Rogelj shows under what conditions this could happen.

Dying for the group: What motivates the ultimate sacrifice?
Whether idolized as heroes or demonized and labelled terrorists, throughout history people have been willing to die for their groups and the causes they believe in.

Alternative technique can improve brain imaging for restless children
Children often find it difficult to remain still for MRI examinations, but an alternative method to conventional MRI for pediatric patients has shown promise in reducing motion-related artifacts in brain imaging, according to an article published online ahead of print from the April 2018 issue of the American Journal of Roentgenology (AJR).

Submerged aquatic vegetation return is sentinel of Chesapeake Bay ecosystem recovery
A new research article published today in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences analyzes the positive impact of long-term nutrient reductions on an important and valuable ecosystem in the Chesapeake Bay.

Don't talk and drive
Analysis of research from 1991 to 2015 on talking on the phone while driving can inform lawmakers in crafting driver safety legislation.

Researchers use health data to predict who will use opioids after hospitalization
Using electronic health record data, researchers identified patient-specific variables which were highly associated with the progression to COT.

Scientists found a way to postpone cell death
A team of MSU-scientists and the Institute of Theoretical and Experimental Biophysics of Russian Academy of Sciences studied the mechanisms of interaction between the Fas-ligand protein that causes cell death and a respective membrane receptor.

Low blood sugar poses unaddressed threat to people with type 2 diabetes
New research from the Endocrine Society and Avalere Health finds that clinicians lack the resources to identify, assess and manage patients who are at a high risk of developing hypoglycemia, or episodes of dangerously low blood sugar.

It's not you, it's me: How customers break up with sellers
Companies invest billions each year in expensive customer service programs, sales forces, and sophisticated discounting programs such as Groupon to lure and retain customers only to find that churn remains one of their biggest, most expensive challenges.

Capturing brain signals with soft electronics
Klas Tybrandt, principal investigator at the Laboratory of Organic Electronics at Linköping University, has developed new technology for long-term stable neural recording.

Seeing sounds: Researchers uncover molecular clues for synesthesia
One in 25 people have synesthesia, perceiving the world in unusual ways.

US healthcare system needs coordinated response to potential pediatric pandemics
Researchers at Children's Hospital Los Angeles (CHLA) have identified gaps in the United States healthcare system that make it inadequately prepared for the surge in pediatric patients that could result from an infectious disease pandemic.

A leopard may not change its spots but venomous creatures change their venom recipe often
For a long time scientists believed that an animal's venom was consistent over time.

UNC Lineberger researchers identify genetic 'seeds' of metastatic breast cancer
University of North Carolina Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center researchers have identified genetic clues that explain how breast cancer spreads, or metastasizes - findings that may lead to better treatments or approaches to prevent its spread at the onset.

Weightlifting shows benefits for kidney disease patients
Research encourages people with non-dialysis chronic kidney disease (CKD) to include resistance training in exercise programmes.

NASA sees powerful storms around Dumazile's eye
When NASA's Aqua satellite and NASA-NOAA's Suomi NPP satellites passed over Tropical Cyclone Dumazile in the Southern Indian Ocean it measured cloud top temperatures and saw its eye circled by a ring of strong thunderstorms.

Modified, 3D-printable alloy shows promise for flexible electronics, soft robots
Researchers have taken a key step toward the rapid manufacture of flexible computer screens and other stretchable electronic devices, including soft robots.

Study discovers South African wildfires create climate cooling
For years, scientists determined that smoke, overall, diminishes clouds' cooling effect by absorbing light that the clouds beneath the aerosols would otherwise reflect.

Cognitive benefits of bilingualism overstated
Bilingualism is naturally very useful in communication between people, but a new meta-analysis shows that it does not seem to increase the cognitive skills related to executive functions.

Number of paid sick days directly impacts how Americans use preventive care like flu shots
In the first study to measure the link between an employee's number of paid sick leave days and the use of vital preventive health care services like getting a flu shot, researchers found a 26 to 85 percent increase in preventive health care use among those with at least 10 or more paid sick leave days.

Engineers, physicians, team to replace heart valves using personalized modeling
Engineers are exploring applications for 3-D printers in the medical field, and the newest research is now going from the lab to the operating room.

Novel PET imaging agent targets copper in tumors, detects prostate cancer recurrence early
An Italian study featured in the March issue of The Journal of Nuclear Medicine demonstrates that a novel nuclear medicine imaging agent targeting copper accumulation in tumors can detect prostate cancer recurrence early in patients with biochemical relapse (rising prostate-specific antigen [PSA] level).

How does resolving cannabis problems differ from problems with alcohol or other drugs?
Individuals who report having resolved a problem with cannabis use appear to have done so at younger ages than those who resolved problems with alcohol or other drugs and were less likely to use any formal sources of assistance or support, report investigators from the Recovery Research Institute at Massachusetts General Hospital.

U CO2 sensor network shows effects of metro growth
In a study published today in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, a team led by atmospheric scientists Logan Mitchell and John Lin report that suburban sprawl increases CO2 emissions more than similar population growth in a developed urban core.

Crepidula onyx resilient towards microplastic diet
A group of scientists at the Chan Lab of the Division of Life Science, HKUST, uses Crepdiula onyx as a model organism to test microplastics immunity, and found that they will threaten other marine organisms that are less resilient towards mircoplastic pollution.

NCDR annual conference highlights the power of clinical data
The American College of Cardiology's NCDR Annual Conference begins on Wednesday, March 7, 2018, in Orlando.

Cancer stem cells, allies of the tumor and enemies of the patient
Research results point to a therapeutic value for the protein (Ahr) because controlling it might repress the pluripotency of the cancer stem cell and reduce the malignity of the tumour.

Fall detection devices for seniors are falling short
Lack of real-world testing and input from older adults and caregivers limits effectiveness of technology, new study shows.

Rare mineral discovered in plants for first time
A rare mineral that holds enticing potential as a new material for industrial and medical applications has been discovered on alpine plants at Cambridge University Botanic Garden.

Sexual behavior of the university students
The study used a sample of students from the University of Seville, who belonged to all the various departments.

Technique to see objects hidden around corners
Someday your self-driving car could react to hazards before you even see them, thanks to a laser-based imaging technology being developed by Stanford researchers that can peek around corners.

Social sensing emerges as a tool for Army leaders
Army and university scientists are turning to problems with social media to create social sensing as a scientific discipline.

Identifying ammonia hotspots in China using national observation network
Researchers from the CAS institute of Atmospheric Physics implemented a passive ammonia monitoring network based on the diffusive technique with monthly integrated measurements at 53 sites since September 2015 and presented the spatial distributions and seasonal variations in atmospheric NH3 on a national scale in China.

World's largest ivory burn delivered a strong message -- but who received it?
Media coverage of the torching of huge caches of ivory presented a strong message against elephant poaching and ivory trade, but many of those who needed to hear it most may not have received it, an international study has found.

Roton quasiparticles observed in quantum gas
An team of physicists from Innsbruck and Hannover has for the first time observed so-called roton quasiparticles in a quantum gas.

New gene therapy corrects a form of inherited macular degeneration in canine model
Researchers from the University of Pennsylvania have developed a gene therapy that successfully treats a form of macular degeneration in a canine model.

The family-owned-franchise penalty
While a family-owned business may have marketing appeal, franchisees that are family-owned don't, on average, perform as well financially as non-family owned franchisees.

Strong relationships in midlife may offset health risks for victims of childhood abuse
Research has linked childhood abuse to many adverse health outcomes in adulthood, including premature mortality, but according to new Northwestern University research, supportive relationships in midlife can partly compensate for the mortality risks linked to childhood abuse.

Biochemists zero in on key molecules that enable cells to crawl
Biochemists at the University of Oregon have made a discovery that sheds light on the molecular machinery that allows some cells, such as immune cells or even malignant cancer cells in humans, to wiggle their way through tissues like organs, skin or bones.

Epigenetics therapy shows promise in patients with lymphoma
New compounds targeting epigenetics have shown remarkable early activity in patients with lymphoma, according to data presented at the TAT (Targeted Anticancer Therapies) International Congress 2018 in Paris, France.

Restoring lipid synthesis could reduce lung fibrosis
Increasing the body's ability to produce lipids in the lungs after damage prevents the progression of pulmonary fibrosis in preliminary studies.

Mortality in HIV+ immunosuppressed adults:intensive screening is equivalent to preventive treatment
The STATIS trial (sponsor Inserm-ANRS) has compared two innovative strategies designed to reduce mortality in severely immunosuppressed HIV-infected adults.

Arms races and cooperation among amoebae in the wild
The social amoeba Dictyostelium discoideum is a powerful social study system because of the hard work of generations of cell and molecular biologists who have figured out many of the mechanisms of its social process.

Chaperones can hold protein in non-equilibrium states
Chaperones are specialized proteins in the cell that help other proteins to reach their functional 3-D shapes, which correspond to the states preferred at thermodynamic equilibrium.

Technique allows live imaging of 'ubiquitous' player in cellular housekeeping
Autophagy is an important regulator of cellular housekeeping that uses ubiquitin to target and remove harmful proteins.

Potential drug targets for ALS revealed in Stanford-led study using CRISPR
In a new application of gene-editing technology, researchers at the Stanford University School of Medicine have gleaned insights into the genetic underpinnings of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, a neurodegenerative disease that's notoriously tricky to parse.

Birth control pills increase risk of ischemic stroke
Oral contraceptives increase the risk of ischemic stroke, but this risk is very small among women who do not have other stroke risk factors, according to a report in the journal MedLink Neurology by Loyola Medicine stroke specialists.

Is strength of state firearm laws associated with firearm homicide, suicide rates?
Strong state firearm laws were associated with lower rates of firearm homicide, firearm suicide and suicide overall.

Inadequate state oil and gas regulations threaten groundwater resources, study finds
Definitions of 'protected groundwater' in 17 state oil and gas regulations are inconsistent and less protective than federal regulations used by US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and US Bureau of Land Management (BLM), according to a study published Friday, March 2, 2018 in Current Opinion in Environmental Science & Health.

Arctic Ny Alesund sees rapid warming, but not the warmest
The IAP team finds Ny Alesund has experienced the fastest warmup in the Arctic, and highest temperature in the recent warm wave.

Culturing cheaper stem cells
Human pluripotent stem cells (hPSCs) can infinitely self-renew and develop into all major cell types in the body, making them important for organ repair and replacement.

Materials 'sandwich' breaks barrier for solar cell efficiency
Nanomaterials esearchers have devised a method to significantly improve the efficiency of organic solar cells.

Spanish scientists discover the cause of accelerated atherosclerosis and premature death in progeria
The study, published in Circulation, shows that vascular smooth muscle cells are the main cause of accelerated atherosclerosis and premature death in an experimental model of progeria.

Chemical sleuthing unravels possible path to forming life's building blocks in space
Scientists have used experiments at Berkeley Lab to retrace the chemical steps leading to the creation of complex hydrocarbons in space.

Researchers pinpoint gene responsible for neurodevelopmental disorders, including autism
Researchers found alterations of the gene thousand and one amino-acid kinase 2, known as TAOK2, plays a direct role in neurodevelopmental disorders, including autism.

Researchers identify renegade cells that portend relapse in children with leukemia
Researchers at the Stanford University School of Medicine have developed a technique that allowed them to determine at diagnosis whether children with acute lymphoblastic leukemia would relapse following treatment.

Risk of cognitive decline reduced for people 85 and older with high cholesterol
People with increasing total cholesterol aged 85 and older had a reduced risk for marked cognitive decline compared to people 75-84 whose risk was significantly elevated.

Drug-producing bacteria possible with synthetic biology breakthrough
Bacteria could be programmed to efficiently produce drugs, thanks to breakthrough research into synthetic biology using engineering principles, from the University of Warwick and the University of Surrey.

Who makes the NCAA tournament? Researchers at the University of Illinois can help
The field for NCAA Tournament will be announced March 11, and basketball fans want to know which teams will be a part of March Madness.

Tropical forest response to drought depends on age
Factors most important for regulation of transpiration in young forests in Panama had to do with their ability to access water in the soil, whereas older forests were more affected by atmospheric conditions.

Controlled coupling of light and matter
Researchers from Würzburg and London have built the foundations for a new field of nano-optics: they have succeeded in controlling the coupling of light and matter at room temperature.

Fish' 'super power' may offer clues about biodiversity evolution
A group of international scientists, including a University of Central Florida biologist, recently discovered that a species of fish living in the north Atlantic Ocean has an ability to adapt to changing environmental conditions that are linked to the depth of its watery habitat.

Breast cancer care in US territories lags behind care in states
Older women residing in the US territories are less likely to receive recommended or timely care for breast cancer compared with similar women residing in the continental United States, according to Yale researchers.

Mammals share mechanisms controlling the heart with a 400 million-year-old fish
Primitive air-breathing fish, whose direct ancestors first appeared around 400 million years ago, show mechanisms controlling the heart which were previously considered to be found only in mammals -- according to a new study.

Researchers find algorithm for large-scale brain simulations
Researchers have made a decisive step towards being able to simulate brain-scale networks on future supercomputers of the exascale class.

Fringe loan use linked to risk of poor health
Many poor and working class Americans who use fringe loan services not only face spiraling in debt due to exorbitant interest rates, they are also more likely to report having poor health.

'Epigenetic landscape' is protective in normal aging, impaired in Alzheimer's disease
Researchers profiled the epigenomic landscape of Alzheimer's brains, specifically in one of the regions affected early in AD, the lateral temporal lobe.

JILA team invents new way to 'see' the quantum world
JILA scientists have invented a new imaging technique that produces rapid, precise measurements of quantum behavior in an atomic clock in the form of near-instant visual art.

Babies who look like their father at birth are healthier one year later
Infants who resemble their father at birth are more likely to spend time together with their father, in turn, be healthier when they reach their first birthday, according to new research co-conducted by faculty at Binghamton University, State University of New York.

Greenhouse gas emissions of hydropower in the Mekong River Basin can exceed fossil fuel sources
Hydropower is commonly considered as a clean energy source to fuel Southeast Asian economic growth.

Producing handy gels from a protein found in human blood
From blood to the lab: the protein albumin is responsible for many vital processes in the human body.

Sustainable ocean development
Earth's vast and vital oceans are a critical source of economic productivity, but issues of space management, interindustry conflict and environmental degradation often limit sustainable commercial development.

How the diagnosing of lung diseases can be improved
The patient's airways can be viewed before transbrochial biopsy in a program developed by the students and employees of the Institute of Fundamental Education, Ural Federal University.

Genes for age-linked brain deterioration identified
A group of genes and genetic switches involved in age-related brain deterioration have been identified by scientists.

Ball or stuffed toy -- Do dogs 'know' what they're smelling?
Dogs' excellent sense of smell is well-known, whether it is in the context of searching for people or for contraband substances.

Minimally invasive surgeries underused in older patients, new study finds
A study of more than 200,000 Medicare patients who had common surgical procedures shows that, compared to the general population, they underwent far fewer minimally invasive operations, whose benefits include lower rates of complications and readmissions, along with shorter hospital stays.

New tool for the crystallization of proteins
ETH researchers have developed a new method of crystallizing large membrane proteins in order to determine their structure.

Surgeon scientists losing ground to other medical researchers for NIH funding
Surgeons have made many significant contributions to science in the 20th century, but the specialty has been losing ground to other medical researchers in terms of government funding over the past decade, according to a study published on the website of the Journal of the American College of Surgeons.

How the brain represents sound elevation
Changing the shape of human participants' ears has provided new insight into how the brain represents the location of a sound source.

Scientists created multifunctional protein-polymer films
A team from MSU together with foreign and Russian colleagues found that when mixing dendrimers (tree-like polymers) and proteins, multilayer films are spontaneously formed.

These tropical hummingbirds make cricket-like sounds other birds can't hear
Researchers reporting in Current Biology on March 5 have found that a tropical species of hummingbird called a black jacobin makes vocal sounds with an unusually high-frequency pitch that falls outside birds' normal hearing range.

How are we related? A Compara-bly easy workflow to find gene families
Researchers at Earlham Institute have released 'GeneSeqToFamily', an open-source Galaxy workflow that helps scientists to find gene families based on the powerful 'EnsemblCompara GeneTrees' pipeline.

Adopted children need closer ties to their birth families, according to national enquiry
The enquiry into adoption in the UK was led by Huddersfield and Royal Holloway universities and commissioned by the British Association of Social Workers.

Squaring the circle: Merchandising embarrassing products
Packaging shapes and colors of embarrassing products, as well as where the products are placed in stores, make a difference in how likely shoppers are to follow through on purchase intentions

Insulator or superconductor? Physicists find graphene is both
Insulator or superconductor? MIT physicists find graphene is both, at a 'magic angle.'

Metal-free catalyst extends the range of ester synthesis
A Japanese research team at Nagoya University created a versatile, metal-free catalyst for trans-esterification.

Magnetic nanoparticles will help stop internal bleeding 15 times more effectively
Scientists from ITMO University have found a way to effectively stop internal bleeding by magnetically-driven nanoparticles containing thrombin.

For flour beetles, it's better to be a woman in a man's world
National Centre for Biological Sciences (NCBS) researchers in Bangalore, India have shown that female red flour beetles reproduce better in male-dominated groups than in unbiased or female-dominated groups.

Communication training for health care professionals may help adolescents start, finish HPV vaccination
A training intervention to help health care professionals better communicate about human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccines with adolescent patients and their parents increased initiation and completion of HPV vaccine series among both boys and girls.

Polygenic risk score may identify alzheimer's risk in younger populations
For the first time, an international team of scientists, led by researchers at University of California San Diego School of Medicine, have determined that an Alzheimer's disease (AD) polygenic risk score can be used to correctly identify adults with mild cognitive impairment (MCI) who were only in their 50s.

You don't think your way out of a tiger attack
Assistant Professor of Cognitive Neuroscience Dean Mobbs and other researchers have discovered the presence of two 'fear' circuits in the brain.
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