Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

September 04, 2018
DNA technology provides novel strategy for delivery of complex anti-HIV agent
Scientists at The Wistar Institute have applied their synthetic DNA technology to engineer a novel eCD4-Ig anti-HIV agent and to enhance its potency in vivo, providing a new simple strategy for constructing complex therapeutics for infectious agents as well as for diverse implications in therapeutic delivery.

Researchers outline game-theory approach to better understand genetics
Principles of game theory offer new ways of understanding genetic behavior, a pair of researchers has concluded in a new analysis.

New technology improves hydrogen manufacturing
INL researchers demonstrated high-performance electrochemical hydrogen production at a lower temperature than had been possible before.

New study finds patients want more information about their medicine
Many patients want more information on the medicines they're prescribed and greater say in the brands they use, the first major study of the burden of long-term medicine use has concluded.

Is TV advertising for health insurance worth the expense? A new study says, 'maybe not'
A new study to be published in the INFORMS journal Marketing Science has revealed that health insurance has a small effect on brand enrollments, raising the question of whether health insurance television advertising is worth the expense.

ACA reduced disparities in health care between Mexican-heritage Latinos and other Latinos
Previous studies have shown that Mexican immigrants living in the United States are less likely to have insurance or to report a usual source of care than Mexican-Americans, other Latinos and non-Latino whites.

High precision microbial population dynamics under cycles of feast and famine
Scientists at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have produced the most precise picture to date of population dynamics in fluctuating feast-or-famine conditions.

Internet & telephone assisted training for child disruptive behavior found to be effective
Positive long-term outcomes, such as a reduction in child disruptive behavior and increased parental skills, have been reported in a new study in the Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry (JAACAP).

Coastal strip in Brazil sheds new light on early farming
Humans may have been cultivating plants on a narrow coastal strip in Brazil as far back as 4,800 years ago, according to a new study.

Cheaper, easier access to fruits and veggies key to college students eating better
A benefit-oriented approach to nutrition increases college students' willingness to consume fruits and vegetables, yet the availability and cost of healthy food on campus are critical to changing their eating habits, according to research published in The Journal of the American Osteopathic Association.

Disaster leaves unexpected impact on rural Japan's marriage migrants
The devastating 2011 tsunami that struck the northeast of Japan led to a surprising outcome -- empowering some migrant women, while further isolating others.

Researchers discover key differences between the exercise-trained heart and failing heart
A study by scientists from Australia's Baker Heart and Diabetes Institute has examined what is happening to the lipids in the heart and circulating blood plasma during exercise compared to a failing heart as a novel way to advance prediction and treatment of heart failure.

Infrared NASA data shows Hurricane Olivia's strongest sides  
NASA's Aqua satellite passed over Hurricane Olivia and found bands of thunderstorms wrapping around its eye and improved thunderstorm development over the southern quadrant of the storm.

Dementia symptoms peak in winter and spring, study finds
Adults both with and without Alzheimer's disease have better cognition skills in the late summer and early fall than in the winter and spring, according to a new study published this week in PLOS Medicine by Andrew Lim of Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre and the University of Toronto, Canada, and colleagues.

Knowledge of African-American language and culture benefits teachers in STEM fields
A new study of K-12 STEM educators demonstrates how adding linguistic information into classroom teaching can help remove barriers to STEM achievement for African-American students.

How much insects eat
A first-of-its-kind study used herbarium specimens to track insect herbivory across more than a century, and found that, across four species -- shagbark hickory (Carya ovata), swamp white oak (Quercus bicolor), showy tick trefoil (Desmodium canadense) and wild lowbush blueberry (Vaccinium angustifolium) -- specimens collected in the early 2000s were 23 percent more likely to be damaged by insect herbivores than those collected in the early 1900s.

Most people don't change their views after seeing racial disparities in police statistics
What people believe is the cause of racial disparities in police stops does influence whether they generally view police officers as trustworthy or not, but most people also don't change their views in light of reading those statistics, according to a study led by a University of Kansas researcher of political behavior and public policy.

Exercise is unrelated to risk of early menopause
The amount of physical activity that women undertake is not linked to their risk of early menopause, according to the largest study ever to investigate this question.

Urgent care visits increase as emergency room visits fall
New findings suggest that patients are more likely to visit urgent care centers over emergency rooms for treatment of low-acuity conditions.

Concussions loosen insulation around brain cells
Detailed scans of concussed hockey players found that the protective fatty tissue surrounding brain cell fibers was loosened two weeks after the injury -- even though the athletes felt fine and were deemed ready to return to the ice.

Study provides 10-year risk estimates for dementia, which may help with prevention in high-risk individuals who potentially could benefit from early targeted prevention
A Danish study provides 10-year absolute risk estimates for dementia specific to age, sex and common variation in the APOE gene, which may help identify high-risk individuals who potentially could benefit from early targeted prevention.

AI beats doctors at predicting heart disease deaths
A model developed using artificial intelligence is better at predicting risk of death in patients with heart disease than models designed by medical experts, a new study from the Francis Crick Institute shows.

UB expert's election forecasting model predicts big House gains for Dems
A distinguished professor of political science at the University at Buffalo has published his latest Seats-in-Trouble projection in the journal PS: Political Science and Politics.

Seven steps to success and what's holding women back: Study
From the 'maternal wall' to the 'boys' club' and beyond the glass ceiling, a group of geoscientists have taken the microscope to their backyard.

Common painkiller linked to increased risk of major heart problems
The commonly used painkiller diclofenac is associated with an increased risk of major cardiovascular events, such as heart attack and stroke, compared with no use, paracetamol use, and use of other traditional painkillers, finds a study published by The BMJ this week.

Little star sheds light on young planets
Astronomers from the Department of Physics at the University of Tokyo discovered a dense disk of material around a young star, which may be a precursor to a planetary system.

Ultracold atoms used to verify 1963 prediction about 1D electrons
Rice University atomic physicists have verified a key prediction from a 55-year-old theory about one-dimensional electronics that is increasingly relevant thanks to Silicon Valley's inexorable quest for miniaturization.

Simulations reveal role of calcium in titanium implant acceptance
Titanium-based materials are widely used in medical implant technology, and coating the surface of titanium materials with biologically active molecules has recently shown promise to improve how cells adhere to implants.

Genome-wide study identifies genes linked to diverticular disease
A genome wide association study reveals potential genes behind the common painful intestinal condition diverticulitis, and could point the way toward new treatment options.

Antioxidant reduces risk for second heart attack, stroke
Doctors have long known that in the months after a heart attack or stroke, patients are more likely to have another attack or stroke.

Global warming, El Niño could cause wetter winters, drier conditions in other months
UC Riverside Earth Sciences Professor Robert Allen's research indicates that what future precipitation California gets will be pretty much limited to the winter months -- think deluge-type rainfall rather than snow -- and non-winter months will be even dryer than usual, with little or no rain at all.

Kids and concussions: UVA physician helps craft new CDC treatment guideline
A University of Virginia Health System emergency medicine physician helped develop new Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) treatment recommendations for children with concussions, also known as mild traumatic brain injury (mTBI).

Expressing your gratitude is more powerful than you think
New research from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business finds that people significantly underestimate the positive impact a letter of gratitude has on its recipient.

Half of over-60s ignore lifesaving bowel cancer screening
Half (51 percent) of people invited to bowel screening for the first time in 2015 didn't take part, according to the latest figures from Cancer Research UK.

UT study suggests earlier diagnosis, potential therapy for Huntington's disease
A new study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS) suggests that Huntington's disease may take effect much earlier in life than was previously believed, and that a new drug may be key in controlling the disease.

NASA sees landfall of Tropical Storm Jebi
When NASA's Aqua satellite passed over Tropical Storm Jebi on Sept.

Lessons from Everest's Sherpas could aid intensive care treatment
A research expedition to Mount Everest has shed light on the unique physiological basis of adaptations seen in the native Sherpa people, which make them better suited to life at high altitude.

Gestational diabetes may predispose to postpartum depression symptoms
Mothers diagnosed with gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM) have an elevated risk of developing postpartum depression symptoms, according to a new Finnish study.

Focused delivery for brain cancers
Hong Chen reached across disciplines, and within her own department, to work toward a more focused drug delivery system that could target tumors lodged in the brainstem, the body's most precious system.

Overall burden of tumor genome changes can predict patient outcomes
Researchers have discovered a link between certain changes in the genome of a tumor and increased chances of death across multiple types of cancer.

NASA finds Tropical Storm Gordon's strength east of its center
After drenching south Florida, Tropical Storm Gordon moved into the eastern Gulf of Mexico and is headed to the northwest.

Peering into private life of atomic clusters -- using the world's tiniest test tubes
Experts in the Nanoscale and Microscale Research Centre (nmRC) at the University of Nottingham have taken a first peak into the private life of atomic clusters.

Researchers identify twenty-five genetic changes that could have extended human lifespan
A new method has made it possible to identify twenty-five parallel mutations located in genes associated with wound healing, blood coagulation and cardiovascular disorders.

Discovery: Mechanical properties of viral DNA determine the course of infection
A new study reveals a previously unknown mechanism that governs whether viruses that infect bacteria will quickly kill their hosts or remain latent inside the cell.

Mass. ICU nurse staffing regulations did not improve patient mortality and complications
In 2014, Massachusetts lawmakers passed a law requiring a 1:1 or 2:1 patient-to-nurse staffing ratio in intensive care units (ICU) in the state, as guided by a tool that accounts for patient acuity and anticipated care intensity.

Coastal researchers examine resource scarcity and poverty traps in coastal tanzania
Louisiana State University researchers are evaluating 13 different villages across the Pangani and Rufiji districts of Tanzania and analyzing the local mangrove ecosystems, including how humans influence and interact with these ecosystems.

Methane to syngas catalyst: two for the price of one
An improvement to the catalyst that converts methane to syngas could lead to a more economical process.

New method speeds up simulations, giving new insights into protein folding
Scientists seek to better understand protein folding to cure misfolding diseases, but this incredibly complex process requires sophisticated algorithms to identify the folding mechanisms.

Body's own 'bomb squad' can help protect against brain tumors
Researchers have discovered how a molecule can help prevent certain types of brain tumors by recognizing and 'disarming' harmful proteins that cause them.

Superbug discovery renews hope for antibiotic treatment
Bacteria that were thought to be resistant to a powerful antibiotic may be susceptible to treatment after all, research from the University of Edinburgh has found.

Effective TB, HIV, malaria vaccines missing from pipeline
Many of the vaccines critically needed to fight the world's most prevalent infectious diseases are not likely to be developed.

Study says coral bleaching on the Great Barrier Reef not limited to shallow depths
A new study demonstrates that the recent mass coral bleaching on the Great Barrier Reef was not restricted to shallow depths, but also impacted deep reefs.

The gens isiaca in Hispania: Egyptian gods in Roman Spain
Researchers from the Universidad Carlos III de Madrid (UC3M) have developed a geo-localized database which enables archaeological pieces from ancient religions to be located on the Iberian Peninsula.

Jumping to scientific conclusions challenges biomedical research
Improving experimental design and statistical analyses alone will not solve the reproducibility crisis in science, argues Ray Dingledine in a societal impact article published in eNeuro.

At last, a simple 3D printer for metal
Research published in the journal Materials Today demonstrates a new approach to 3D printing to fuse metallic filaments made from metallic glass into metallic objects.

More hospital doctors are opting to retire early
Hospital doctors in England and Wales are increasingly choosing to take early retirement, figures released to The BMJ by the NHS Business Services Authority in response to a freedom of information request show.

CDC Guideline on diagnosis, management of mild traumatic brain injury in children
A Centers for Disease Control and Prevention evidence-based guideline on the diagnosis and management of mild traumatic brain injury (concussion) in children is detailed in a special communication article.

Think pink for a better view of climate change
A new study says pink noise may be the key to separating out natural climate variability from climate change that is influenced by human activity.

Fish oil supplement in pregnancy is linked to increase in lean and bone mass by age 6 years
Taking fish oil supplements in the later stages of pregnancy is associated with a higher weight (BMI) in children in the first six years of life, but not an increased risk of overweight or obesity by age 6, suggest the findings of a large randomised controlled trial published by The BMJ today.

New clues found to understanding relapse in breast cancer
A large genomic analysis has linked certain DNA mutations to a high risk of relapse in estrogen receptor positive breast cancer, while other mutations were associated with better outcomes, according to researchers from Washington University School of Medicine in St.

Ohio State scientists identify hormone link between diabetes and hypertension
Physician researchers with The Ohio State University College of Medicine at the Wexner Medical Center say increased levels of the hormone aldosterone, already associated with hypertension, can play a significant role in the development of diabetes, particularly among certain racial groups.

Zika virus study reveals possible causes of brain pathology
In healthy individuals, the Zika virus causes flu-like symptoms. If a pregnant woman becomes infected, the unborn child can suffer from severe brain abnormalities as a result of mechanisms that have not yet been explained.

Online searches about cardiovascular disease follow strong seasonal and geographical patterns
There is a strong seasonal pattern in seeking cardiovascular health information on Google, with higher search activity during winter months, according to a new study published in Mayo Clinic Proceedings.

Giving tortoises a 'head start'
Research from the University of Georgia indicates that head-starting -- raising a species in captivity and releasing it into a protected habitat after it has grown large enough to be less vulnerable to predators -- is a useful intervention for boosting the state's gopher tortoise population.

SwRI engineers are developing a small cooled turbine to make drones more efficient
Southwest Research Institute engineers are developing a cooled, radial gas turbine for a small generator that provides thousands of hours of electricity to an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV), a significant improvement to current UAV turbines that only operate a few hundred hours before wearing out.

NYU researchers identify tool to help transgender women have a more authentic voice
New York University researchers have identified biofeedback as a new tool to assist in voice modification therapy for transgender women.

Story tips from the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory, September 2018
ORNL story tips: Lab, field tests show improved building insulation performance; ORNL-developed software runs quantum programs on multiple quantum computers; ORNL moved single atoms below a crystal's surface; certain bacteria turns mercury into methylmercury at varying rates across species; ORNL hosts Molten Salt Reactor Workshop in October.

CDC releases updated guideline on diagnosis and management of pediatric mTBI
In an effort to improve outcomes for patients 18 years and younger who experience concussions and mild traumatic brain injuries (mTBI), the CDC recently published the CDC Guideline on the Diagnosis and Management of Mild Traumatic Brain Injury Among Children, built from a comprehensive review of 25 years of research on the science behind pediatric mTBI.

Measuring the nanoworld
Researchers establish a benchmark for accurate determination of internal dimensions within individual molecules.

The brain's tiny thrill-seekers
Microglia, the immune cells of the central nervous system, differ in male and female mice.

B cells among factors leading to brain lesions in multiple sclerosis
A team of researchers from UZH and USZ has shown that in multiple sclerosis, it is not only specific T cells that cause inflammation and lesions in the brain.

No evidence that moral reminders reduce cheating behavior, replication effort concludes
Scientists report they were unable to reproduce the results of a well-known study showing that people are less likely to cheat on a task after making a list of the Ten Commandments.

Fossil teeth show how Jurassic reptiles adapted to changing seas
Marine predators that lived in deep waters during the Jurassic Period thrived as sea levels rose, while species that dwelled in the shallows died out, research suggests.

NASA-funded rocket to view sun with X-ray vision
The FOXSI sounding rocket will scour the Sun with X-ray vision, looking for the mysterious mini-explosions that heat the corona to millions of degrees.

Episodic and intense rain caused by ancient global warming
A new study by scientists at the University of Bristol has shown that ancient global warming was associated with intense rainfall events that had a profound impact on the land and coastal seas.

How the clownfish earned its stripes: Color pattern evolution in coral reef fishes
Coral reef fishes, including clownfish, display a wide variety of colors but it remains unclear how these colors evolved or how they develop throughout a fish's life.

Sexual development in fungi
Biologists at Ruhr-Universität Bochum and Georg-August-Universität Göttingen have gained new insights into specific enzymes that effect the specialisation of fungal cells.

Hormone therapy can make prostate cancer worse, study finds
Scientists at Cedars-Sinai have discovered how prostate cancer can sometimes withstand and outwit a standard hormone therapy, causing the cancer to spread.

USPSTF recommendation statement on screening for syphilis infection in pregnant women
The US Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) recommends early screening for syphilis infection in all pregnant women.

New smart materials could open new research field
A group of new smart materials discovered by researchers at Texas A&M University and their colleagues has the potential to significantly improve the efficiency of fuel burn in jet engines, cutting the cost of flying.

Mechanism of biological noise cancellation revealed
Researchers at Kanazawa University report in Scientific Reports how a particular biochemical signaling pathway cancels biological noise, ensuring the proper stem cell differentiation during development.

NASA sees Tropical Storm Florence still feeling the shear
NASA's Aqua satellite showed that the center of Tropical Storm Florence's circulation was still displaced to the southeast of the bulk of the storm indicating wind shear was still affecting the storm.

Attention network plays key role in restoring vision after brain damage
About one-third of patients who have suffered a stroke end up with low vision, losing up to half of their visual field.

Clown fish: Whence the white stripes?
Scientists from the CNRS have been training their attention on the developmental and evolutionary determinants of white stripes in clown fish.

State-of-the-art imaging techniques reveal heightened detail and beauty of vertebrate life
A mingling of science and art, the next-generation photographs of vertebrate skeletons are at once fascinating, eerie, intricate and exquisite.

Globally, 1.4 billion adults at risk of disease from not doing enough physical activity
No improvement in global levels of physical activity since 2001.

The Mona Lisa decrypted
Summarized possible medical conditions visible in portrait of Lisa Gherardini, woman pictured in Leonardo da Vinci's Mona Lisa, and proposed his own interpretations.

Fast vs slow water: explaining the fragile-to-strong transition
A Japanese research team led by The University of Tokyo investigated the fragile-to-strong transition of water.

Person-centered video blogs increase chances of viewer support for cancer patients
As people with cancer use social media to find and develop support systems, a new study looks at YouTube content to determine what kinds of videos elicit an empathetic response from viewers.

Changing the type of silicon etching drops solar power costs by more than 10 percent
Michigan Technological University and Aalto University researchers have found that using dry etched black silicon for passive emitter rear cell (PERC) solar cells increases the cost of individual cell production by 15.8 percent to 25.1 percent, but reduces the cost per unit power by 10.8 percent over those for industrial Czochralski silicon.

Why we stick to false beliefs: Feedback trumps hard evidence
Ever wonder why flat earthers, birthers, climate change and Holocaust deniers stick to their beliefs in the face of overwhelming evidence to the contrary?

What is the effect on biomarkers of smoke exposure of immediate reduction of nicotine content in cigarettes vs. gradual?
The optimal approach for reducing nicotine to minimally or nonaddictive levels in all cigarettes sold in the United States has not been determined.

Chromatin structure: Slip-sliding away...
The DNA in the cell nucleus is highly condensed, and genes must be rendered accessible before they can be activated.

'What is not just a thing': an alternative inquiry into 'what is life'
S. Bai and H. Ge at Peking University, together with H.

S, N co-doped carbon nanotube-encapsulated CoS2@Co
Researchers report cobalt disulphide encapsulated in self-catalyzed carbon nanotubes (S, N-CNTs/CoS2@Co) serving as a bifunctional catalyst, which exhibits excellent OER and HER performance, as well as strong stability at various current densities.

Colorectal cancer: Tipping the scales
Tumors of the colon are among the most prevalent cancers.

Researchers study how wolf predation shapes elk antler evolution
University of Montana researchers and their partners recently published a study in Nature Ecology and Evolution chronicling an evolutionary tie between wolves and when bull elk shed their antlers.

Eye movements take edge off traumatic memories
Two human experiments published in JNeurosci demonstrate that a widely used yet controversial psychotherapy technique suppresses fear-related amygdala activity during recall of a traumatic memory.

Study finds you act most like 'you' in a time crunch
When they must act quickly, selfish people are likely to act more selfishly than usual, while pro-social people behave even more pro-socially, a new study found.

Body clock link to steroids discovered
Scientists at The Universities of Manchester and Leeds have discovered that the time of day influences the way mice respond to steroids.

Mount Sinai launches television series on CUNY TV
The Mount Sinai Health System has launched a new television series called Mount Sinai Future You, featuring clinicians, researchers, and patients discussing how innovations in science, medicine, and new models of care are changing the course of health care.

Reducing nitrogen inputs prevents algal blooms in lakes
For decades, experts have debated whether reducing the amount of nitrogen flowing into lakes can improve water quality in the long-term, even though blue-green algae can bind nitrogen from the air.

Alpine ecosystems struggle to recover from nitrogen deposition
A new CU research study finds that degraded alpine ecosystems showed limited recovery years after long-term inputs of human-caused nitrogen air pollution, with soil acidification and effects on biodiversity lingering even after a decade of much lower nitrogen input levels.

Factor to boost MSCs & collagen II activity in intervertebral disc degeneration identified
A new study has demonstrated the tissue regenerative potential of a chemoattractant delivery system that can draw mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) to the site of intervertebral disc (IVD) degeneration.

Tilted pulses
Physicists from Konstanz produced extremely short and specifically-shaped electron pulses for materials studies in the femtosecond and attosecond range in collaboration with Munich-based institutes.

Novel strategy shows promise for earlier detection of Alzheimer's disease
Finding an effective way to identify people with mild cognitive impairment who are most likely to go on to develop Alzheimer's disease has eluded researchers for years.

Scientists find a neurological synergy in explaining the processing of an optical illusion
A team of scientists has uncovered a neurological synergy that occurs in visual adaptation, a phenomenon in which perception is altered by prolonged exposure to a stimulus.

New lentivirus-based tool assesses effect of Wnt/ß-Catenin signaling on bone regeneration
Researchers have developed a novel tool for determining the sensitivity of bone healing to inhibition of the Wnt signaling pathway and have validated its use in a study of bone regeneration in mice.

New approach could help improve severe-storm forecasting
A geostationary hyperspectral infrared sounder can provide significant support to meteorologists to improve local severe-storm forecasting. 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