Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

August 16, 2018
Scientists create new technology and solve a key puzzle for cellular memory
With a new groundbreaking technique, researchers from University of Copenhagen have managed to identify a protein that is responsible for cellular memory being transmitted when cells divide.

Novel sensors could enable smarter textiles
A fabric coating with thin, lightweight and flexible pressure sensors that can be embedded into shoes and other functional garments, sensors that can measure everything from the light touch of a finger to being driven over by a forklift.

The Lancet Public Health: Moderate carbohydrate intake may be best for health
Low-carb diets that replace carbohydrates with proteins and fats from plant sources associated with lower risk of mortality compared to those that replace carbohydrates with proteins and fat from animal sources.

MSU plant sciences faculty part of international discovery in wheat genome sequence
Hikmet Budak, Winifred Asbjornson Plant Sciences Chair, is one of 200 international scientists who co-published an article this week detailing the description of the genome of bread wheat.

Quantum material is promising 'ion conductor' for research, new technologies
Researchers have shown how to shuttle lithium ions back and forth into the crystal structure of a quantum material, representing a new avenue for research and potential applications in batteries, 'smart windows' and brain-inspired computers containing artificial synapses.

Physicists fight laser chaos with quantum chaos to improve laser performance
To tame chaos in powerful semiconductor lasers, which causes instabilities, scientists have introduced another kind of chaos.

Study: Human wastewater valuable to global agriculture, economics
It may seem off-putting to some, but human waste is full of nutrients that can be recycled into valuable products that could promote agricultural sustainability and better economic independence for some developing countries, says a new study by University of Illinois researchers.

How an herbivore hijacks a nutrient uptake strategy of its host plant
Maize plants release secondary metabolites into the soil that bind to iron and thereby facilitate its uptake by the plant.

NASA sees Tropical Storm Bebinca along Vietnam's coast
Tropical Storm Bebinca showed powerful, heavy rain-making thunderstorms on infrared satellite imagery when NASA's Terra satellite saw the storm along the northern Vietnam coast.

UTHealth-led study shows much work remains to ensure e-health record safety
Four years after their publication by the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC), voluntary guidelines designed to increase the safety of e-health records have yet to be implemented fully, according to a survey led by a researcher at The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth).

'Abrupt thaw' of permafrost beneath lakes could significantly affect climate change models
Methane released by thawing permafrost from some Arctic lakes could significantly accelerate climate change, according to a new University of Alaska Fairbanks-led study.

Scientists discover new method of diagnosing cancer with malaria protein
In a spectacular new study, researchers from the University of Copenhagen have discovered a method of diagnosing a broad range of cancers at their early stages by utilising a particular malaria protein, which sticks to cancer cells in blood samples.

Wheat code finally cracked; wheat genome sequence will bring stronger varieties to farmers
Kansas State University scientists, in collaboration with the International Wheat Genome Sequencing Consortium, published today in the international journal Science a detailed description of the complete genome of bread wheat, the world's most widely cultivated crop.

Obesity, infertility and oxidative stress in mouse egg cells
Proteomic analysis of oocytes from obese mice showed changes in a protein that promotes antioxidant production and may alter meiotic spindles.

Infrared NASA imagery shows Tropical Storm Soulik strengthening
When NASA's Aqua satellite passed over recently developed Tropical Storm Soulik in the Northwestern Pacific Ocean it analyzed temperatures in the storm.

How a 'jellyfish'-shaped structure relieves pressure in your cells
Scientists at Scripps Research have solved the structure of a key protein that senses when our cells swell.

GW researchers publish review article on developing vaccines for human parasites
Researchers from the George Washington University published an article in Trends in Parasitology outlining their lessons learned while creating vaccine candidates for hookworm and schistosomiasis.

NASA finds intensifying Tropical Storm Lane
Tropical Storm Lane continues to strengthen and NASA's Aqua satellite provided infrared imagery that showed storms have intensified around its center.

YouTube is source of misinformation on plastic surgery, Rutgers study finds
In the first study to evaluate YouTube videos on facial plastic surgery procedures, Rutgers University researchers found that most are misleading marketing campaigns posted by non-qualified medical professionals.

Cardiovascular disease related to type 2 diabetes can be reduced significantly
Properly composed treatment and refraining from cigarette consumption can significantly reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease resulting from type 2 diabetes, according to a study published in The New England Journal of Medicine.

Astronomers identify some of the oldest galaxies in the universe
Astronomers have identified some of the earliest galaxies in the universe.

One giant leap for wheat
'For me, as a functional genomics and genetics researcher, having a continuous and fully annotated sequence for each of the 21 wheat chromosomes is of paramount importance,' says Kostya Kanyuka who, with bioinformatician Rob King, represented Rothamsted Research in the IWGSC.

Exercise shown to improve symptoms of patients with chronic kidney disease
Leicester's Hospitals and University of Leicester lead research into CKD.

Autism linked to egg cells' difficulty creating large proteins
New work from Carnegie's Ethan Greenblatt and Allan Spradling reveals that the genetic factors underlying fragile X syndrome, and potentially from other autism-related disorders, stem from defects in the cell's ability to create unusually large protein structures.

How people use, and lose, preexisting biases to make decisions
From love and politics to health and finances, humans can sometimes make decisions that appear irrational, or dictated by an existing bias or belief.

More protein after weight loss may reduce fatty liver disease
Increasing the amount of protein in the diet may reduce the liver's fat content and lower the risk of diabetes in people with nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD).

These tags turn everyday objects into smart, connected devices
Engineers have developed printable metal tags that could be attached to plain objects, like water bottles, walls or doors, and turn them into 'smart' Internet of Things devices.

Dominant men make decisions faster
Men who exhibit high social dominance make faster decisions than low-dominance men even outside a social context, finds a large behavioral study from EPFL.

First mouse model to mimic lung disease could speed discovery of more effective treatments
A team of researchers from Penn Medicine has developed the first mouse model with an IPF-associated mutation, which induces scarring and other damage similar to what is observed in humans suffering from the condition.

Nematode can rebuild muscle and neurons after complete degradation
What can scientists learn about human neurodegenerative disease from a major soybean pest?

Most wear-resistant metal alloy in the world engineered at Sandia National Laboratories
Sandia's materials science team has engineered a platinum-gold alloy believed to be the most wear-resistant metal in the world.

Statins associated with improvement of rare lung disease
Researchers have found that cholesterol-lowering statins may improve the conditions of people with a rare lung disease called autoimmune pulmonary alveolar proteinosis.

Opt-out organ donation register unlikely to increase number of donations
An opt-out organ donation register is unlikely to increase the number of donations, according to a new study from Queen Mary University of London.

Men and women show surprising differences in seeing motion
Researchers reporting in the journal Current Biology on Aug. 16 have found an unexpected difference between men and women.

Social position determines pregnant women's exposure to air pollution
A new study analyzes the urban exposome of 30,000 women in nine European cities.

New CRISPR technique skips over portions of genes that can cause disease
In a new study in cells, University of Illinois researchers have adapted CRISPR gene-editing technology to cause the cell's internal machinery to skip over a small portion of a gene when transcribing it into a template for protein building.

When sulfur disappears without trace
Many natural products and drugs feature a so-called dicarbonyl motif -- in certain cases however their preparation poses a challange to organic chemists.

NASA water vapor data shows a 'patchy' Sub-Tropical Storm Ernesto
NASA's Aqua satellite provided a look at water vapor in the Atlantic Ocean's Sub-Tropical Storm Ernesto and found the storm looking somewhat ''patchy.'' NASA's GPM satellite provided an earlier look at Ernesto's rainfall and cloud heights.

UConn scientists create reverse osmosis membranes with tunable thickness
Researchers at the University of Connecticut used electrospray technology to create ultra-thin, ultra-smooth polyamide membranes for reverse osmosis.

Previously grainy wheat genome comes into focus
An international consortium has completed the sequence of wheat's colossal genome.

Scientists discover why silver clusters emit light
Clusters of silver atoms captured in zeolites, a porous material with small channels and voids, have remarkable light emitting properties.

UM Researcher discovers genetic differences in trees untouched by mountain pine beetles
A University of Montana researcher has discovered that mountain pine beetles may avoid certain trees within a population they normally would kill due to genetics in the trees.

The wheat code is finally cracked
The International Wheat Genome Sequencing Consortium (IWGSC) published today in the international journal Science a detailed description of the genome of bread wheat, the world's most widely cultivated crop.

Cells agree: What doesn't kill you makes you stronger
Brief exposures to stressors can be beneficial by prompting cells to trigger sustained production of antioxidants, molecules that help get rid of toxic cellular buildup related to normal metabolism -- findings with potential relevance for age-related diseases like cancer, Alzheimer's and heart disease.

NTU scientists discover natural plant-based food preservative
Nanyang Technological University, Singapore (NTU Singapore) scientists have discovered a plant-based food preservative that is more effective than artificial preservatives.

There is not one kind of 'good sperm' -- it depends on other qualities in the male
In a study published in Behavioral Ecology researchers from Uppsala University show that the same type of sperm is not always the best for all male birds.

99-million-year-old beetle trapped in amber served as pollinator to evergreen cycads
Flowering plants are well known for their special relationship to the insects and other animals that serve as their pollinators.

Study: The eyes may have it, an early sign of Parkinson's disease
The eyes may be a window to the brain for people with early Parkinson's disease.

Interactive software tool makes complex mold design simple
Most of the plastic objects we see are created using injection molding, but designing such molds is a difficult task, usually requiring experts.

Scientists discover why some people with brain markers of Alzheimer's have no dementia
A new study from The University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston has uncovered why some people that have brain markers of Alzheimer's never develop the classic dementia that others do.

Tibetan sheep highly susceptible to human plague, originates from marmots
In the Qinghai-Tibet plateau, one of the region's highest risk areas for human plague, Himalayan marmots are the primary carriers of the infectious bacterium Y. pestis.

Low bandwidth? Use more colors at once
As researchers engineer solutions for eventually replacing electronics with photonics, a Purdue University-led team has simplified the manufacturing process that allows utilizing multiple colors at the same time on an electronic chip instead of a single color at a time.

'Traffic wardens' of cells can be counterproductive
A research team from the Instituto Gulbenkian de Ciência and the Centre for Biomedical Research/University of Algarve, found that a mechanism of cell division control can be associated with an increase of errors in chromosomes distribution.

Reliable point-of-care blood test can help prevent toxoplasmosis
A new point-of-care test for the parasite Toxoplasma gondii can be performed with a drop of the mother's blood.

Working memory might be more flexible than previously thought
Breaking with the long-held idea that working memory has fixed limits, a new study by researchers at Uppsala University and New York University suggests that these limits adapt themselves to the task that one is performing.

Can population policy lessen future climate impacts?
Population has been seemingly left out of climate change assessments, including by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.

Researchers reveal miscarriage cause, key cellular targets of potential drugs
UNC School of Medicine researchers discovered a gene mutation underlying hydrops fetalis -- a fatal condition to fetuses due to fluid buildup in the space between organs.

Super-resolution microscope reveals secrets of deadly Nipah virus
The deadly Nipah virus and others like it assemble themselves in a much more haphazard manner than previously thought, new UBC research has found.

New in the Hastings Center report, July-August 2018
Advanced directives for dementia, differentiating obese children from abused children, and more in the (July-August 2018 issue.

Scientists turn to the quantum realm to improve energy transportation
Scientists based at the National Institute of Informatics in Tokyo, Japan, have designed a more efficient quantum transport system using a creative, yet counterintuitive solution.

Children put on by robots
Can robots induce the same social influence and peer pressure as hu-mans do?

China & UK scientists find coarse resolution models underestimate future Mei-yu rainfall
China and UK scientists investigated the effect of model resolution on the mei-yu rainfall projection using the Hadley Centre's latest climate model, HadGEM3-GC2.

The cure for chaotic lasers? More chaos, of course
An international, Yale-led research team has taken a new approach to stabilizing high-power lasers: They're fighting chaos with chaos.

Smallest transistor worldwide switches current with a single atom in solid electrolyte
At Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT), physicist Professor Thomas Schimmel and his team have developed a single-atom transistor, the smallest transistor worldwide.

Patients with healthcare-associated infections suffer social, emotional pain
The consequences of healthcare-associated infections (HAIs) reach well beyond patients' physical health, souring social relationships, and leading some healthcare providers (HCP) to distance themselves from affected patients, according to a qualitative, systematic review published in the American Journal of Infection Control (AJIC), the journal of the Association for Professionals in Infection Control and Epidemiology (APIC).

UMD researcher helps to crack the genetic code for wheat for the first time
The University of Maryland as part of the International Wheat Genome Sequencing Consortium published findings in Science detailing the full wheat genome, the world's most widely cultivated crop.

Retinoic acid may improve immune response against melanoma
University of Colorado Cancer Center clinical trial results describe a promising strategy to remove one of melanoma's most powerful defenses: By adding retinoic acid to standard-of-care treatment, researchers were able to turn off myeloid-derived suppressor cells (MDSCs) that turn off the immune system, leading to more immune system activity directed at melanoma.

New manufacturing technique could improve common problem in printing technology
A new manufacturing technique developed by researchers from Binghamton University, State University at New York may be able to avoid the 'coffee ring' effect that plagues inkjet printers.

Study links mothers' pesticide levels with autism in children
A new study from The American Journal of Psychiatry finds that elevated pesticide levels in pregnant women are associated with an increased risk of autism among their children.

Taking a closer look at unevenly charged biomolecules
Clinicians most often monitor antibodies because these small proteins attach to antigens, or foreign substances, we face every day.

Math shows how human behavior spreads infectious diseases
Mathematics can help public health workers better understand and influence human behaviors that lead to the spread of infectious disease, according to a study from the University of Waterloo.

For women undergoing IVF, is fresh or frozen embryo transfer best?
IVF experts disagree about whether transferring a fresh or frozen embryo to a patient's womb offers the best opportunity for healthy babies.

Under pressure, hydrogen offers a reflection of giant planet interiors
Lab-based mimicry allowed an international team of physicists including Carnegie's Alexander Goncharov to probe hydrogen under the conditions found in the interiors of giant planets -- where experts believe it gets squeezed until it becomes a liquid metal, capable of conducting electricity.

Discovery of a key protein involved in the development of autism
The protein CPEB4, which coordinates the expression of hundreds of genes required for neuronal activity, is altered in the brains of individuals with autism.

Twisted electronics open the door to tunable 2D materials
Columbia University researchers report an advance that may revolutionize the field of 2D materials such as graphene: a 'twistronic' device whose characteristics can be varied by simply varying the angle between two different 2D layers placed on top of one another.

Microfossils, possibly world's oldest, had biological characteristics
Scientists have confirmed that the 3.4 billion year old Strelley Pool microfossils had chemical characteristics similar to modern bacteria.

Researchers discover key mechanism of DNA replication
Researchers from Osaka University in Japan have uncovered a key control mechanism of DNA replication with potential implications for better understanding how cells maintain genetic information to prevent diseases or cancer.

ShareBackup could keep data in the fast lane
Rice University engineers develop ShareBackup, a hardware and software solution to help data centers recover from failures without slowing applications.

NASA sees Tropical Storm Rumbia off China's East Coast
Tropical Storm Rumbia was off the eastern coast of China when NASA's Aqua satellite passed over the storm on Aug.

Brain response study upends thinking about why practice speeds up motor reaction times
Researchers in the Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation at Johns Hopkins Medicine report that a computerized study of 36 healthy adult volunteers asked to repeat the same movement over and over became significantly faster when asked to repeat that movement on demand--a result that occurred not because they anticipated the movement, but because of an as yet unknown mechanism that prepared their brains to replicate the same action.

More workers working might not get more work done, ants (and robots) show
For ants and robots operating in confined spaces like tunnels, having more workers does not necessarily mean getting more work done.

Collective clog control: What ants can teach us about traffic flow
Observing how ants excavate their narrow underground tunnels provides new insight into how to orchestrate optimal traffic flow in confined and crowded environments, researchers say.

Societies release updated guideline for treating adult congenital heart disease patients
The American College of Cardiology and the American Heart Associated today released an updated guideline for the management of adult congenital heart disease (ACHD) patients.

Lowering pH inside cells may put the brakes on cancer growth
A new study focusing on the environment inside cancer cells may lead to new targeted treatment strategies.

Blood test could detect kidney cancer up to five years prior to clinical diagnosis
A team of investigators led by Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC) medical oncologist Rupal Bhatt, M.D., Ph.D., has demonstrated that a molecule called KIM-1, a protein present in the blood of some patients with renal cell carcinoma is present at elevated levels at the time of diagnosis, can also serve as a tool to predict the disease's onset up to five years prior to diagnosis.

That stinks! 1 American in 15 smells odors that aren't there
A new study finds that one in 15 Americans (or 6.5 percent) over the age of 40 experiences phantom odors.

Presenting the first fully annotated reference genome of bread wheat
An international team of researchers has presented a fully annotated reference genome for bread wheat, one of the world's most important and widely cultivated crops.

Protecting the power grid: Advanced plasma switch for more efficient transmission
Article describes PPPL research to help General Electric design an advanced and cost-effective power switch to protect the US electric grid.

Childhood exposure to secondhand smoke may increase risk of adult lung disease death
A new study suggests that long-term exposure to secondhand smoke during childhood increases the risk of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) death in adulthood.

Most Americans accept genetic engineering of animals that benefits human health
Americans' views of possible uses of genetic engineering in animals vary depending on the mechanism and intended purpose of the technology, particularly the extent to which it would bring health benefits to humans.

Discovery of a structurally 'inside-out' planetary nebula
The Instituto de Astrofísica de Andalucía (IAA-CSIC) in Spain, the Laboratory for Space Research (LSR) of the University of Hong Kong (HKU), and an International team comprising scientists from Argentina, Mexico and Germany have discovered the unusual evolution of the central star of a planetary nebula in our Milky Way.

New approach to fight tuberculosis, a leading cause of death worldwide
A group of researchers from the Gladstone Institutes, UC San Francisco (UCSF), and UC Berkeley used a systematic approach to get an entirely new look at the way tuberculosis infects people.

Electrospraying a better desalinization membrane
Following 30 years during which the membrane hasn't changed much, researchers have introduced a new method for making the membranes used to turn saltwater fresh.

Internet of Things technology can boost classroom learning and bridge gender divide
The use of Internet of Things devices in the classroom can have major educational benefits and appeal to both genders if designed and used in the right way, according to new research carried out by the University of Kent.

New aid to help identify and manage patients with diabetes at increased risk of fracture
The International Osteoporosis Foundation (IOF) Bone & Diabetes Working Group has published 'Diagnosis and management of bone fragility in diabetes: an emerging challenge' an expert review that summarizes key research, highlights clinical issues, and provides a helpful 'decision-tree' style algorithm for the identification and management of diabetic patients at increased fracture risk.

Blood test may identify gestational diabetes risk in first trimester, NIH study indicates
A blood test conducted as early as the 10th week of pregnancy may help identify women at risk for gestational diabetes, a pregnancy-related condition that poses potentially serious health risks for mothers and infants, according to researchers at the National Institutes of Health and other institutions.

Hubble paints picture of the evolving universe
Hubble and other space and ground-based telescopes, astronomers have assembled one of the most comprehensive portraits yet of the universe's evolutionary history.

Expecting to learn: Language acquisition in toddlers improved by predictable situations
Two year-old children were taught novel words in predictable and unpredictable situations.

First biomarker evidence of DDT-autism link
A study of more than 1 million pregnancies in Finland reports that elevated levels of a metabolite of the banned insecticide DDT in the blood of pregnant women are linked to increased risk for autism in the offspring.

There's no place like home: study finds home care effective for patients with blood clots
Study finds that patients with low-risk blood clots may be better off receiving treatment at home versus being admitted to the hospital.

Oil palm: few areas in Africa reconcile high yields and primate protection
An international research team, including scientists from CIRAD and the European Commission Joint Research Centre, has assessed the potential impact on primates of the expansion of oil palm cultivation in Africa.

How common among US adults is the perception of a phantom odor?
The perception of phantom odors is a condition in which individuals think they smell odors that don't actually exist.

Stress during pregnancy increases risk of mood disorders for female offspring
High maternal levels of the stress hormone cortisol during pregnancy increase anxious and depressive-like behaviors in female offspring at the age of 2, reports a new study in Biological Psychiatry.

Quality of YouTube videos for facial plastics information
YouTube videos are a popular resource for facial plastics information.

Newly identified role for inhibition in cerebellar plasticity and behavior
Researchers at MPFI have discovered part of the answer to this longstanding question: How do our brains turn the motor errors we make into meaningful and reliable learning?

Using mushrooms as a prebiotic may help improve glucose regulation
Eating white button mushrooms can create subtle shifts in the microbial community in the gut, which could improve the regulation of glucose in the liver, according to a team of researchers.

Educational tracking creates artificial inequalities among students
New research shows the structure of educational tracking can lead evaluators to favor high over low socioeconomic status students in tracking decisions.

How do plants rest photosynthetic activity at night?
Scientists at Tokyo Institute of Technology have identified two proteins that allow plants to respond to changes in surrounding light conditions and thereby make photosynthesis more efficient.

Individuals shot by police exhibit distinct patterns of recent prior hospitalizations and arrests
A study published in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine found that more than 50 percent of people with assault-related or legal intervention (LI) firearm injuries due to law enforcement actions and over 25 percent of individuals with self-inflicted or unintentional firearm injuries were arrested, hospitalized, or both in the two years prior to being shot.

Ancient beetle discovery gives clue to gymnosperm pollination
Scientists from the Nanjing Institute of Geology and Palaeontology reported a new mid-Cretaceous (99-million-year-old) boganiid beetle with specialized pollen feeding adaptations.

UTA professor leads federal advisory group on the prevention of acute, chronic pain
A University of Texas at Arlington professor led a federal advisory group that has published its recommendations on the prevention of acute and chronic pain to the Federal Research Pain Strategy, an interagency committee that oversees the government's long-term strategic plan to support pain research.

A unique combination of catalysts opens doors to making useful compounds
All organisms rely on chemical reactions in order to make various natural products.

Autoimmunity plays role in development of COPD, study finds
Autoimmunity plays a role in the development of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), according to a study led by Georgia State University and Vanderbilt University Medical Center that analyzed human genome information stored in Vanderbilt's DNA biobank.

Whole blood test for toxoplasmosis is sensitive, specific
Transmission of toxoplasmosis from mother to fetus can lead to severe congenital problems and fetal death, and tests for the parasitic infection during pregnancy are critical.

Scientists create antilaser for ultracold atoms condensate
An international team of scientists developed the world's first antilaser for nonlinear Bose-Einstein condensate of ultracold atoms.

Volcano eruptions at different latitudes impact sea surface temperature differently
Scientists investigate the different impacts of northern, tropical and southern volcanic eruptions on the tropical Pacific Sea Surface Temperature(SST).

Sprawling galaxy cluster found hiding in plain sight
MIT scientists have uncovered a sprawling new galaxy cluster hiding in plain sight.

Smart fluorescent dyes
Controlling the excited electronic states in luminescent systems remains a challenge in the development of fluorescent and phosphorescent dyes.

Resistance training and exercise-motivation go hand-in-hand
A recent study conducted in the University of Jyväskylä suggests that resistance training improves exercise motivation and contributes to making exercise planning among older adults.

Microbial activity in the mouth may differentiate children with autism spectrum disorder
Research suggests that shifts in bacterial populations within a child's mouth could provide objective biomarkers for identifying autism spectrum disorder (ASD).

Female mosquitoes get choosy quickly to offset invasions
Certain female mosquitoes quickly evolve more selective mating behavior when faced with existential threats from other invasive mosquito species, with concurrent changes to certain genetic regions, according to new research from North Carolina State University.

Stretching beyond limits
Novel research optimizes both elasticity and rigidity in the same material without the usual tradeoffs 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