Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

June 11, 2018
Toxicant levels up to 99 percent less in myblu™ aerosols compared to cigarette smoke
A new aerosol chemistry study presented at the 1st Scientific Summit -- Tobacco Harm Reduction: Novel products, Research & Policy, has revealed toxicant levels in myblu pod-system e-cigarette aerosols are up to 99 percent lower than in cigarette smoke.

Adapting lifestyle habits can quickly lower blood pressure
A program aimed at helping people modify lifestyle factors such as diet and exercise is as effective as medication at reducing blood pressure.

Mangoes helped improve cardiovascular and gut health in women
A new study conducted at the University of California, Davis found that two cups of mangoes a day had beneficial effects on systolic blood pressure among healthy postmenopausal women.

Predicted environmental changes could significantly reduce global production of vegetables
The global production of vegetables and legumes, which are an important part of healthy diets, could be significantly reduced through predicted future changes to the environment, according to new research published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Patients' self-diagnosis of personality disorders not as far off as previously believed
Purdue University researchers think the gap between a psychologists' diagnosis and a patient's self-evaluation might not be as extreme as previously perceived when both are using the same evaluation tools.

Mutation links bipolar disorder to mitochondrial disease
Mutations in the gene ANT1 may confer a risk for bipolar disorder through a complex interplay between serotonin and mitochondrial signaling in the brain.

Large-scale study indicates novel, abundant nitrogen-fixing microbes in surface ocean
A large-scale study of the Earth's surface ocean indicates the microbes responsible for fixing nitrogen there -- previously thought to be almost exclusively photosynthetic cyanobacteria-include an abundant and widely distributed suite of non-photosynthetic bacterial populations.

Researchers identify new type of depression
Depression is a mental disorder that affects over 300 million people around the world.

MD Anderson Therapeutics Discovery team identifies and advances a drug that targets metabolic vulnerability and impairs cancer cell growth and survival
A drug discovered and advanced by The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center's Institute for Applied Cancer Science (IACS) and the Center for Co-Clinical Trials (CCCT) inhibits a vital metabolic process required for cancer cells' growth and survival.

Extra vigilance required to combat growing sophistication of phishing attacks
Enterprising hackers can spoof the email address of a trusted friend, co-worker, or business and send forged emails to victims.

DIY brings high throughput to continuous cell culturing
Bioengineers from Rice University, Boston University and MIT have created an open-source, do-it-yourself system that combines the control of automated cell-culturing systems that can run for months with the scale of high-throughput systems that grow dozens of cultures at once.

Approaching an ideal amino acid synthesis using hydrogen
Osaka University researchers demonstrated a reductive alkylation method for the functionalization of substituted amines using hydrogen, which is efficiently catalyzed by innocuous main-group catalysts.

Key difference between humans and other mammals is skin deep, says study
While humans and other species share some of the same genetic information, new research found that humans are unique among mammals when it comes to the types and diversity of microorganisms on our skin.

Rutgers physicists create new class of 2D artificial materials
In 1965, a renowned Princeton University physicist theorized that ferroelectric metals could conduct electricity despite not existing in nature.

1.35 million children's lives saved by HiB and pneumococcal vaccines since 2000
Childhood deaths from two leading bacterial causes of pneumonia and meningitis, pneumococcus and Hib, declined sharply during the period 2000 to 2015, especially as vaccines against these pathogens were introduced in high-burden countries, according to new estimates from a team led by scientists at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health.

NASA observed the once-hurricane Aletta intensify, now weakening quickly
When Tropical Storm Aletta intensified and became a hurricane in the eastern Pacific Ocean the Global Precipitation Measurement mission or GPM core satellite passed overhead to analyze the major hurricane's rainfall rates.

Choice matters: The environmental costs of producing meat, seafood
A new study appearing online June 11 in the journal Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment considers which food type is more environmentally costly to produce: livestock, farmed seafood or wild-caught fish.

Large study finds workplace foods contribute to unhealthy eating
A study of 5,222 employees across the US found that the foods people get at work tend to contain high amounts of sodium and refined grains and very little whole grains and fruit.

USC scientists help identify genetic markers for prostate cancer in global DNA download
An international research team including USC scientists found telltale genetic markers that can be used to predict those most at risk of prostate cancer, a disease common for older men.

Squashing cyberbullying: New approach is fast, accurate
Researchers at the University of Colorado Boulder have designed a new technique for spotting nasty personal attacks on social media networks like Instagram.

Warmer climate will dramatically increase the volatility of global corn crops
Warmer temperatures by the end of this century will dramatically increase the volatility in global supplies of corn, the most widely grown crop in the world.

How physically active are adolescents, young adults?
Adolescents girls and young adult females (ages 12 to 29) reported less physical activity than their male counterparts and physical activity dropped off sharply during the transition from adolescence to young adulthood, with disparities by race and income seen among some groups.

Pandoravirus: Giant viruses invent their own genes
Three new members have been added to the Pandoravirus family by researchers at the CNRS and Aix-Marseille Université, working with partners at CEA, Inserm and Université Grenoble-Alpes.

Designing a better superconductor with geometric frustration
Study shows a magnet-controlled 'switch' in superconductor configuration provides unprecedented flexibility in managing the location of vortex filaments, altering the properties of the superconductor.

Drug may quell deadly immune response when trauma spills the contents of our cells' powerhouses
When trauma spills the contents of our cell powerhouses, it can evoke a potentially deadly immune response much like a severe bacterial infection.

New target for treating heart failure identified by Penn Medicine researchers
Changes in cellular struts called microtubules (MT) can affect the stiffness of diseased human heart muscle cells, and reversing these modifications can lessen the stiffness and improve the beating strength of these cells isolated from transplant patients with heart failure.

New aircraft-scheduling models may ease air travel frustrations
Flight schedules that allow for a little carefully designed wiggle room could prevent the frustration of cascading airport delays and cancellations.

Framework identifies genetic missense mutations linked to autism spectrum disorder
A new study published in Nature Genetics established a computationally integrated approach to investigate the functional impact of missense mutations.

Criticism from parents affects how children's brains respond to emotional information
Children of highly critical parents show less attention to emotional facial expressions, according to new research from Binghamton University, State University at New York.

Reporting and evaluating wait times for urgent hip fracture surgery in Ontario, Canada
About two-thirds of patients admitted to hospital in Ontario for hip fracture did not receive surgery during the recommended time window of 24 hours, according to a new study in CMAJ (Canadian Medical Association Journal).

Turbocharge for lithium batteries
A team of material researchers from Juelich, Munich, and Prague has succeeded in producing a composite material that is particularly suited for electrodes in lithium batteries.

Are you really you when you're hungry?
What makes someone go from simply being hungry to full-on 'hangry'?

Safety protocol breaches: ways to prevent infection transmission in health care setting
During 325 observations, researchers at the University of Utah and University of Michigan identified 283 protocol violations, which could increase the risk of self-contamination of health care personnel and transmission of antibiotic-resistant organisms to patients.

Children with neuroblastoma have an elevated risk of long-term psychological difficulties
A new study reveals that pediatric neuroblastoma patients are at elevated risk for long-term psychological impairment.

Satellite shows this bud's a major hurricane for you, Eastern Pacific Ocean
The second major hurricane of the Eastern Pacific Ocean season formed after the first hurricane, Aletta, weakened.

Tracing the impacts of food and nutrition policies
Many policies are being implemented or considered to try to steer people toward healthier food choices.

A system purely for developing high-performance, big data codes
PlinyCompute, a big data platform designed specifically for developing high-performance and data-intensive codes, will be unveiled by Rice University computer scientists at this week's 2018 ACM SIGMOD conference in Houston.

Further drivers of ocean deoxygenation identified
Measurements as well as model calculations equally show that the oxygen inventory of the oceans is decreasing.

Evidence for a new property of quantum matter revealed
A theorized but never-before detected property of quantum matter has now been spotted in the lab.

Erectile dysfunction means increased risk for heart disease, regardless of other risk factors
Men with erectile dysfunction are at greater risk for heart attacks, strokes and sudden cardiac death.

The language of facial expressions
University of Miami Psychology Professor Daniel Messinger collaborated with researchers at Western University in Canada to show that our brains are pre-wired to perceive wrinkles around the eyes as conveying more intense and sincere emotions.

Prostate cancer DNA test identifies men with six-fold increased risk
A major new study of more than 140,000 men has identified 63 new genetic variations in the DNA code that increase the risk of prostate cancer.

Regenerative bandage accelerates healing in diabetic wounds
A Northwestern University team has developed a new device, called a regenerative bandage, that quickly heals these painful, hard-to-treat sores without using drugs.

Discovery of the oldest mammal in Brazil pays tribute to David Bowie
Brasilestes stardusti lived around 70 million years ago and was named after Ziggy Stardust, the singer's iconic persona.

UNC-Chapel Hill researchers ask Americans 'What does God look like?'
A team of psychologists at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill have used a new technique to construct what a large sample of 511 American Christians think God looks like.

Study points to possible treatment target for aggressive liver cancer in kids
A protein in the cell nucleus already targeted therapeutically for several types of cancer has now been linked to an aggressive form of pediatric liver cancer called hepatoblastoma (HBL), according to a study published in the Nature journal Communications Biology.

Researchers identify new gene changes that point to elevated prostate cancer risk
Fredrick R. Schumacher, PhD, a cancer epidemiology researcher at Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine, and an international team of more than 100 colleagues have identified 63 new genetic variations that could indicate higher risk of prostate cancer in men of European descent.

Journal of Neuroscience study explains what makes aggressive mice so violent
Higher levels of FosB in NAc neurons were associated with more intense behaviors by aggressive mice defending their home cage from an intruder.

Deep-freezing of orange juice can increase the absorption of beneficial compounds
The cold treatments have two opposite effects. On one hand, they cause the carotenoids to degrade (negative effect) and, on the other hand, they generate an increase in the bioaccessibility of the carotenoids (positive effect).

New 28-GHz transceiver paves the way for future 5G devices
Scientists at Tokyo Tech have designed and fabricated a tiny, but incredibly fast, reliable, and accurate 28-GHz transceiver meant for stable high-speed 5G communications.

NASA finds Tropical Storm Maliksi weakening, expanding
Usually when a tropical cyclone weakens it expands and that's how Tropical Storm Maliksi has appeared in recent NASA satellite imagery as its strength wanes.

How to slow down Ebola
The phylogenetic tree of the 2013-2016 Ebola epidemic doesn't just tell us how the Ebola virus was able to evolve: it also reveals which events and preventive measures accelerated or slowed down its spread.

Orange peels may hold secret to airborne medicine, safer bridges
Engineering Assistant Professor Andrew K. Dickerson and graduate student Nicholas M.

Stanford nectar research sheds light on ecological theory
Different species almost always coexist -- whether it's big animals on the plains, bugs in a jungle or yeasts in flower nectar -- but how that works is complicated.

Why are sight and sound out of sync?
The way we process sight and sound are curiously out of sync by different amounts for different people and tasks, according to a new study from City, University of London.

Research shows if your eyes wrinkle when you smile or frown, you appear more sincere
Researchers at Western University have shown that our brains are pre-wired to perceive wrinkles around the eyes as conveying more intense and more sincere emotions.

Experiments at Berkeley Lab help trace interstellar dust back to solar system's formation
Experiments conducted at Berkeley Lab helped to confirm that samples of interplanetary particles -- collected from Earth's upper atmosphere and believed to originate from comets -- contain dust leftover from the initial formation of the solar system.

Nano-decorations in nature's subsurface water filter
After years of working on this problem, Johnson has found an answer that could help water managers better prepare for and respond to outbreaks caused by rain and floods.

Fathers' early parenting quality affected by mothers
How a new mother reacts to her partner's early interactions with their baby may affect his parenting quality later on, a new study suggests.

Making the oxygen we breathe, a photosynthesis mechanism exposed
Oxygen photosynthesis has to be the greatest giver of life on Earth, and researchers have cracked yet another part of its complex and efficient chemistry.

Solar cells combining silicon with perovskite have achieved record efficiency of 25.2 percent
In Neuchâtel (Switzerland), researchers from EPFL and CSEM have combined silicon- and perovskite-based solar cells.

MOF material offers selective, reversible and repeatable capture of toxic atmospheric gas
Led by the University of Manchester, scientists have developed a metal-organic framework material with a selective, fully reversible and repeatable capability to remove atmospheric nitrogen dioxide gas in ambient conditions.

Philosopher warns against 'drifting into state terrorism'
Philosopher Michael Quante calls for social debate on ethically justifiable warfare -

RNA changes aided sunflower's rapid evolutionary transformation, domestication
A new University of Colorado Boulder-led study sheds light on the genetic mechanisms that allowed sunflowers to undergo a relatively rapid evolutionary transition from wild to domesticated in just over 5,000 years.

A new therapy proves effective against brain metastasis
A study published in Nature Medicine by a team led by Manuel Valiente, head of the Brain Metastasis Group at the Spanish National Cancer Research Centre (CNIO), shows that the administration of silibinin in patients with brain metastasis reduces lesions without causing any adverse effects.

PARP inhibitor improves overall response rates in small cell lung cancer patients
In a randomized, Phase II trial led by researchers at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, adding the PARP inhibitor veliparib to a standard chemotherapy agent improved overall response rates (ORR) in patients with small cell lung cancer (SCLC).

Mu­sic play­school en­hances chil­dren's lin­guistic skills
According to the research conducted at the University of Helsinki, weekly music playschool significantly improved the development of children's vocabulary skills.

Taking a closer look at 'electrifying' chemistry
With the increasing availability of electrical energy from renewable sources, it will be possible in the future to drive many chemical processes using an electric current.

Discovery in the sky with nanodiamonds
A faint and mysterious stream of microwaves emanating from star systems far out in the Milky Way could be caused by tiny diamonds, new research has suggested.

Scientists watch bacteria 'harpoon' DNA to speed their evolution
Indiana University researchers have directly observed for the first time how bacteria use appendages thousands of times thinner than a human hair to absorb DNA.

Algorithm predicts dangerous low blood pressure during surgery
Scientists have developed an algorithm that predicts potentially dangerous low blood pressure, or hypotension, that can occur during surgery.

Doing right by the whales
UCSB marine ecologist Erin Meyer-Gutbrod and colleagues urge a more proactive conservation management strategy for the North Atlantic right whale.

Special issue to highlight climate science for service partnership between China and the UK
Research highlights of the Climate Science for Service Partnership China appear on June 7, 2018 in a special issue of Advances of Atmospheric Sciences, a journal published by Springer.

American sign language and English language learners: New linguistic research supports the need for policy changes
A new study of the educational needs of students who are native users of American Sign Language (ASL) shows glaring disparities in their treatment by the U.S Department of Education.

McLean investigators suggest that brain circuits could unlock new psychiatric treatments
The findings of the studies highlight the complexity of brain inhibitory systems and the importance of taking a subtype-, circuit- and neuronal population-specific approach to develop future therapeutic strategies using cell type-specific drug delivery.

Genome-editing tool could increase cancer risk
Therapeutic use of gene editing with the so-called CRISPR-Cas9 technique may inadvertently increase the risk of cancer, according to a new study from Karolinska Institutet, Sweden, and the University of Helsinki, Finland, published in Nature Medicine.

A better device for measuring electromagnetic radiation
Researchers have developed a better bolometer, a device for measuring electromagnetic radiation.

Reviving the protector: new tactic against medulloblastoma
Scientists have a new tactic with potential for fighting medulloblastoma, the most common and most aggressive form of brain tumor in children.

Negative emotions are murkier, less distinct in adolescence
Adolescents don't distinguish between negative emotions as clearly as younger children and adults in their 20s do, according to findings published in Psychological Science, a journal of the Association for Psychological Science.

What makes aggressive mice so violent
Aggressive behavior and the motivation to act aggressively have distinct molecular bases, according to a study of male mice published in JNeurosci.

Researchers Discover New Type of Stem Cell State
John Bracht, American University biology assistant professor, and his students discovered a new type of cell state that could help ensure one always has the ability to generate healthy fat cells.

'Tricking' bacteria into hydroxylating benzene
Researchers at Nagoya University used bacteria to convert benzene into phenol.

'Surgery in a pill' a potential treatment for diabetes
Orally administered material temporarily coats the intestine, reduces blood sugar spikes in preclinical study.

Diamond dust shimmering around distant stars
Some of the tiniest diamonds in the universe -- bits of crystalline carbon hundreds of thousands of times smaller than a grain of sand -- have been detected swirling around three infant star systems in the Milky Way.

Better outcomes for patients using single-pill combination for blood pressure
People who are prescribed a combination pill to manage their high blood pressure are more likely to take their medicine as instructed and have better health outcomes than those who take the same medications prescribed as separate pills, according to a new study published today.

Making mistakes while studying actually helps you learn better
Contrary to popular belief, when a person makes a mistake while learning, it improves their memory for the right information, but only if the error is close to the correct answer, according to a study published in the journal, Memory.

Federal food aid to Puerto Rico high in salt, sugar
An analysis of 10 consecutive days of federal food aid delivered during the aftermath of Hurricane Maria reveals that much of this food exceeded the dietary limits for sodium, added sugars and saturated fats outlined in federal dietary guidelines.

Key cancer-fighting gene's secret weapons revealed
Melbourne scientists have discovered how the most important gene in preventing human cancer, p53, is able to stop the development of lymphoma -- a type of blood cell cancer -- and potentially other types of cancer as well.

Implantable device delivers drugs straight to the heart
A refillable, implantable device, sits directly on the heart and delivers drugs and other therapies to treat the after-effects of a heart attack.

Double-checking diabetes medications may reduce re-hospitalizations
In a paper to be published in the Diabetes Care journal, Brigham and Women's Hospital physician Alexander Turchin, M.D., MS, and his colleagues assessed medication reconciliation programs at BWH and Massachusetts General Hospital, and found that they seem to be working.

'Therepi' device attaches to heart
A team of researchers is hoping to halt the progression from heart attack to heart failure with a small device called 'Therepi.' The device contains a reservoir that attaches directly to the damaged heart tissue.

Mount Sinai team diagnoses asthma with nasal brush test
Mount Sinai researchers have identified a genetic biomarker of asthma that can be tested for using a simple nasal brush and basic follow-up data analysis.

Many at risk for HIV despite lifesaving pill
Multiple barriers may stop high-risk individuals from accessing an HIV drug that can reduce the subsequent risk of infection, according to a new University of Michigan study.

Army scientists have a blast with aluminum nanoparticles
Army scientists proved a decades-old prediction that mixing TNT and novel aluminum nanoparticles can significantly enhance energetic performance.

Ethnic minority enterprise in Scotland 'is promising but needs more support to succeed'
Ethnic minority entrepreneurs in Scotland need more engagement and support from the government and key industry partners to start and grow successful businesses, according to research by the University of Strathclyde.

Heritage science: Where the past looks to the future
Are crowd-sourced photos taken with mobile phones useful in collecting analytics for antiques?

Ingesting honey after swallowing button battery reduces injury and improves outcomes
A team of ear, nose, and throat (ENT) specialists has demonstrated that eating honey after swallowing a button battery has the potential to reduce serious injuries in small children.

Artificial gene defect reveals target to fight genetic disease
Fanconi anemia (FA) is caused by defective genes for DNA-repair leading to bone marrow failure, developmental abnormalities and increased cancer risk.

Post-stroke delivery of neurotrophic factor MANF promotes functional recovery in rats
The neurotrophic factor MANF is neuroprotective when administered before experimental stroke.

Millennials: Bet for the future
A 'Soviet person' is becoming a phenomenon of the past.

Manipulated enzymes
TU Graz researchers managed for the first time ever to 'retrain' an enzyme to build ring-shaped molecular structures instead of performing its natural task of reducing double bonds.

Fueling a deep-sea ecosystem
Miles beneath the ocean's surface in the dark abyss, vast communities of subseafloor microbes at deep-sea hot springs are converting chemicals into energy that allows deep-sea life to survive -- and even thrive -- in a world without sunlight.

A hydrogel restores breathing after spinal cord injury in animal models
Lab tests demonstrate that a hydrogel could help repair damaged spinal nerves that control breathing, an advance that could eventually be developed into new patient treatment.

People who 'see the glass as half full' are more likely to fall prey to marketing scams
Consumers who perceive the benefits of large sums of money promised in mass marketing scams (MMS) are more likely to discount the risks and fall prey to perpetrators, according to new research co-authored by the University of Plymouth.

A Liberal accent: Linguistics team documents language changes in southwest Kansas
A Kansas State University linguistics team has found that people in southwest Kansas are developing a distinct accent.

New epigenetic drug against Mantle Cell Lymphoma
A new study by doctor Manel Esteller's group at IDIBELL presents an epigenetic drug capable of slowing down cell growth in Mantle Cell Lymphoma (MCL).

Experiments trace interstellar dust back to solar system's formation
A team of scientists, led by University of Hawai'i at Manoa researcher Hope Ishii, discovered that certain interplanetary dust particles contain dust leftover from the initial formation of the solar system.

Mozart, meditation and a yoga mat: Oncologists welcome integrative therapies for breast cancer
A breast cancer patient dealing with anxiety, depression or mood swings could soon be encouraged by her oncologist to learn meditation techniques, join a yoga class or put music to therapeutic use.

Volcanic activity, declining ocean oxygen triggered mass extinction of ancient organisms
Researchers from Florida State University have found the first conclusive evidence that millions of years ago, powerful volcanoes pumped Earth's atmosphere full of carbon dioxide, draining the oceans of oxygen and driving a mass extinction of marine organisms

Drug delivery system maintains breathing after spinal cord injury in rats
Researchers have devised a safe and effective way to deliver therapeutic molecules to the cervical spinal cord after injury in female rats.

Wastewater treatment plants are key route into UK rivers for microplastics
Water samples from UK rivers contained significantly higher concentrations of microplastics downstream from wastewater treatment plants, according to one of the first studies to determine potential sources of microplastics pollution.

Citizen science -- A powerful tool to combat invasive giant slugs
With the help of citizen science, researchers have unraveled the close correlation between weather conditions and the appearances of a giant slug species, enabling them to predict the slug's activity on the following day.

Slips of the ear: When knowledge deceives perception
Misperception of speech results from a weak representation of the difference between what we expect to hear and what is actually said, according to a human neuroimaging study published in JNeurosci. 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