Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

December 11, 2018
New tool delivers swifter picture of cognitive deficit
A new tool, developed by researchers from the University of Adelaide, will assist clinicians to assess people suffering from major depressive disorder (MDD).

What social stress in monkeys can tell us about human health
A new University of Washington-led study examines one key stress-inducing circumstance -- the effects of social hierarchy -- and how cells respond to the hormones that are released in response to that stress.

Online game trains players how to sort waste correctly
A simple online game can teach people to more accurately sort waste--with lasting results, a new UBC study has found.

Using water molecules to unlock neurons' secrets
EPFL researchers have developed a method to observe the electrical activity of neurons by analyzing the behavior of surrounding water molecules.

New approach towards an improved treatment of anxiety disorders
Traumatic experiences can become deeply entrenched in a person's memory.

Hong Kong's waters benefit health and wellbeing
A ground-breaking study has revealed how spending time in and around Hong Kong's 'blue spaces' (harbours, coastlines and beaches) is linked to better health and wellbeing, especially for older adults.

BMI is a good measure of health after all, new study finds
A new study from the University of Bristol supports body mass index as a useful tool for assessing obesity and health.

ESMO Immuno-Oncology Congress showcases new technologies set to improve cancer treatment
Innovation in immuno-oncology is exploding and new technologies that are set to benefit many patients with cancer are being showcased in the highly diverse array of topics to be discussed at the ESMO Immuno-Oncology Congress, to be held 13-16 December in Geneva, Switzerland.

Meditation adapts the brain to respond better to feedback
In a new study in the Journal of Cognitive, Affective & Behavioral Neuroscience researchers from the University of Surrey have discovered a link between meditation and how individuals respond to feedback.

New light-based technology reveals how cells communicate in human disease
Scientists at the University of York have developed a new technique that uses light to understand how cells communicate in human disease.

National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) issues new guidelines for COPD
NICE makes a 'strong' recommendation that patients with severe COPD be referred for evaluation for bronchoscopic lung volume reduction, including the Zephyr® Endobronchial Valve System.

Researchers at LSTM identify additional mechanisms at play in insecticide resistance
Researchers at LSTM have used a bioinformatics approach to integrate information from multiple studies on insecticide resistance in mosquitoes and uncovered a number of important resistance mechanisms that had not previously been recognised.

Novel technique may significantly reduce breast biopsies
A novel technique that uses mammography to determine the biological tissue composition of a tumor could help reduce unnecessary breast biopsies, according to a new study.

Are you stressed? Your eyes may provide a window into your mental workload
With nearly breakneck speed, the demands of work productivity in today's society seem to have increased tenfold.

Parents, kids spend more time discussing how to use mobile technology
Most parents would agree that one of the of the biggest modern parenting challenges is monitoring a child's online activity.

Human antibody discovery could save lives from fungal killer
A new way to diagnose, treat and protect against stealth fungal infections that claim more than 1.5 million lives per year worldwide has been moved a step closer, according to research published in Nature Communications.

Women having a heart attack wait longer than men to get help
Women are being urged to call an ambulance immediately if they have heart attack symptoms, following research showing they wait longer than men to get help.

Neighborhood affects the healthiness of dietary choices
A new study shows that living or moving to a neighborhood with a higher socioeconomic status is clearly associated with better adherence to dietary recommendations.

A correlation between obesity and income has only developed in the past 30 years
It is well known that poorer Americans are more likely to be obese or suffer from diabetes; there is a strong negative correlation between household income and both obesity and diabetes.

Stronger pesticide regulations likely needed to protect all bee species, say studies
Regulators worldwide currently use honeybees as the sole model species failing to account for potential threats posed by agrochemicals to the full diversity of bee species from bumblebees to solitary bees, which are probably more important for pollination of food crops than managed honeybees.

Relationship impairments hinder men seeking mental health treatment
Relationship impairment (difficulty managing expectations and requirements within an intimate relationship) plays a role in explaining the association between symptom severity and those seeking treatment among post-9/11 military veterans.

Medical training or a family? Residents, training programs seek balance
A new analysis finds striking inconsistency in parental leave policies at the nation's top residency programs, illustrating the enormous challenge these programs face balancing training the next generation of doctors and supporting trainees' personal and family needs.

How skin cells protect themselves against stress
Cell biologists at the University of Münster have developed a new method for measuring how mechanical forces in cells are processed.

Ni/MWCNT-based electrochemical sensor for fast detection of phenol in wastewater
In a paper published in NANO, researchers from the Harbin Institute of Technology have discovered a low cost and non-enzymatic phenol sensor that exhibits high sensitivity, good selectivity, reproducibility, and stability which has potential application in phenol detection in discharged wastewater.

The contribution of international academics to UK must be recognised, says business school
Immigrant academics play a critical role in the UK's international and national collaborations that bring social and economic benefits beyond academia, shows a new study of the public engagement activities of the UK's native-born and international academics.

Historic earthquakes test Indonesia's seismic hazard assessment
Using data gleaned from historical reports, researchers have now identified the sources of some of the most destructive Indonesian earthquakes in Java, Bali and Nusa Tenggara, using these data to independently test how well Indonesia's 2010 and 2017 seismic hazard assessments perform in predicting damaging ground motion.

Whole-body PET/MRI provides one-stop shop for staging high-risk prostate cancer patients
New research shows that molecular imaging--specifically, PSMA PET/MR--performs as well as currently used tools and provides additional information on tumor location that could help guide treatment for prostate cancer patients.

Drug repositioning strategy identifies potential anti-epilepsy drugs
Starting with human brain tissue from patients with epilepsy, University of Iowa researchers used gene expression profiling and bioinformatics to identify 91 FDA-approved drugs, that may also have potential as anti-epilepsy treatments.

Switching to a home battery won't help save the world from climate change
Home energy storage systems might save you money, but under current policies, they would also often increase carbon emissions.

Number of dementia sufferers worldwide grew by 117 percent in 26 years
An international group of collaborating scientists that includes HSE Professor Vasily Vlasov has analyzed data from 195 countries on the spread of Alzheimer's disease and other dementia between 1990 and 2016.

Trying to get people to agree? Skip the French restaurant and go out for Chinese food
When people in a business negotiation share not just a meal but a plate, they collaborate better and reach deals faster, according to new research from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business.

Loss of two genes drives a deadly form of colorectal cancer, reveals a potential treatment
Scientists from Sanford Burnham Prebys Medical Discovery Institute (SBP), in collaboration with clinicians from Scripps Clinic, have identified that the loss of two genes drives the formation of serrated colorectal cancer--yielding potential biomarkers.

Study: Innovative model helps kids on autism spectrum avoid behavioral drugs in ER
An innovative care model developed by Nemours Children's Hospital for children with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) in the emergency department (ED) reduces the use of medication administered to kids who are prone to stress and sensory overload in this care setting.

Tenacious and flexible goal pursuit gets older people on the move
Tenacious goal pursuit and flexible goal adjustment have been shown to help maintain psychological well-being despite age related challenges and losses.

Researchers propose guidelines for the therapeutic use of melatonin
In an article published in Endocrine Reviews, Brazilian professors discuss the general criteria to be considered when prescribing the pineal hormone as a health supplement.

The source of stem cells points to two proteins
While other animal embryos grow outside the mother, their embryonic cells can get right to work accepting assignments, such as head, tail or vital organ.

Internet therapy apps reduce depression symptoms, IU study finds
In a sweeping new study, Indiana University psychologists have found that a series of self-guided, internet-based therapy platforms effectively reduce depression.

Attention training improves intelligence and functioning of children's brain
the study shows that the beneficial effects of training in the brain and intelligence are greater when an educator implement a coaching strategy design in order to help the child to understand their training process

Immune cells sacrifice themselves to protect us from invading bacteria
Our immune systems are working overtime this time of year.

Citations show academic and non-academic researchers 'win' when they collaborate
Findings in new PNAS paper indicate that when academics work with business, government, and/or NGO partners they produce more cited, higher impact research.

Lethal combination: Drug cocktail turns off the juice to cancer cells
A widely used diabetes medication combined with an antihypertensive drug specifically inhibits tumor growth - this was discovered by researchers from the University of Basel's Biozentrum two years ago.

Taking uncertainty out of cancer prognosis
An analysis of nearly 20,000 cancer patient histories and genetic data has revealed that knowing the genetic cause of a cancer does not help predict how deadly the disease will be.

New evidence that females might benefit most from a low-salt diet
A low-salt diet may be more beneficial in lowering blood pressure in females than males, report scientists who found that while actual salt retention isn't higher in females, there is still an effect that drives pressure up.

Superhero science: Ant-Man and the Wasp
For most of Mikel-Stites' life, he had been nit-picking at the 'science' in science-fiction movies.

Gut microbiome may affect some anti-diabetes drugs
Why do orally-administered drugs for diabetes work for some people but not others?

Digital mammography increases breast cancer detection
The shift from film to digital mammography increased the detection of breast cancer by 14 percent overall in the United Kingdom without increasing the recall rate, according to a major new study.

FSU researchers find racial inequity among adolescents receiving flu vaccine
Black adolescents living in the United States tend to receive the influenza vaccine at significantly lower rates than their white and Hispanic counterparts, according to Florida State University researchers.

The importins of anxiety
According to some estimates, up to one in three people around the world may experience severe anxiety in their lifetime.

New method gives microscope a boost in resolution
Scientists at the University of Würzburg have been able to boost current super-resolution microscopy by a novel tweak.

Stop sterilizing your dust
A new Northwestern University study has found that an antimicrobial chemical called triclosan is abundant in dust -- and linked to changes in its genetic makeup.

New review of scientific studies confirms food cravings can be reduced
Food craving, the intense desire to eat certain foods, can sabotage efforts to maintain healthy eating habits and body weight, no matter the time of year.

Inaccurate prescribing warnings in electronic medical record systems
Electronic prescribing is becoming widespread. All states allow it, some states require it, and many institutions now mandate electronic prescribing.

Silica paradox
An international team of physicists and materials scientists from NUST MISIS, Bayerisches Geoinstitut (Germany), Linköping University (Sweden), and California Institute of Technology (USA) has discovered 'impossible' modifications of silica coesite-IV and coesite-V - i.e., materials that had not been supposed to exist.

Music evokes powerful positive emotions through personal memories
Music is known to evoke emotions through a range of mechanisms.

CCNY-Yale researchers make shape shifting cell breakthrough
A new computational model developed by researchers from The City College of New York and Yale gives a clearer picture of the structure and mechanics of soft, shape-changing cells that could provide a better understanding of cancerous tumor growth, wound healing, and embryonic development.

Sun-soaking device turns water into superheated steam
MIT engineers have built a device that soaks up enough heat from the sun to boil water and produce 'superheated' steam hotter than 100 degrees Celsius, without any expensive optics.

Algorithms to locate centrioles in the cell
Investigators from the UEx have developed a methodology with new algorithms to analyse the location of the centriole in a model cell.

New understanding of mysterious 'hereditary swelling'
For the first time ever, biomedical researchers from Aarhus University, Denmark, have unveiled cellular defects that lead to the rare disease hereditary angioedema (HAE), where patients experience recurrent episodes of swelling that requires immediate treatment.

FEFU young scientists developed unique method to calculate transparent materials porosity
Applying the new method, technologists and materials scientists will be able to quickly, accurately and without destroying the studied objects to obtain information about the microstructure and functionality of transparent materials - single crystals, glasses, and ceramics.

Relationship between low income and obesity is relatively new, says study
It's a fact: poverty and obesity are intimately connected. But this relationship is only about 30 years old, according to a new study coauthored by UT researchers and published in Palgrave Communications, an open-access, online journal.

A future for red wolves may be found on Galveston Island
Red wolves, once nearly extinct, again teeter on the abyss.

USC study examines disruption of circadian rhythm as risk factor for diseases
USC scientists report a time-keeping mechanism in liver cells that helps sustain key organ tasks can contribute to diseases when its natural rhythm is disrupted.

Researchers use computer model to predict prostate cancer progression
An international team of cancer researchers from Denmark and Germany have used cancer patient data to develop a computer model that can predict the course of disease for prostate cancer.

Lithuanian scientists' approach to perovskite solar cells -- cheaper production and high efficiency
A team of chemists from Kaunas University of Technology (KTU), Lithuania together with physicists from Helmholtz Zentrum Berlin (HZB) science institute, Germany are offering novel approach for the selective layer formation in perovskite solar cells.

Macrophage cells key to helping heart repair -- and potentially regenerate: New study
Macrophage cells have the ability to act in a neo-natal-like state, a time in life where they aid in the growth and development of organs, meaning they could be channeled to help repair the heart following a heart attack.

Can social interactions affect spread of disease?
In a paper publishing next week in the SIAM Journal on Applied Dynamical Systems, a team of researchers from New York University and Politecnico di Torino, Italy, draws connections between people's social activity and the spread of epidemics through a mathematical model.

New link between atrial fibrillation and mutations in heart disease gene
A nationwide research team has found a strong relationship between early-onset Afib and mutations that break TTN, a gene that helps maintain the structure of heart muscle.

Study: Neurons in the brain work as a team to guide movement of arms, hands
The apparent simplicity of picking up a cup of coffee or turning a doorknob belies the complex sequence of calculations and processes that the brain must undergo to identify the location of an item in space, move the arm and hand toward it, and shape the fingers to hold or manipulate the object.

Criminalisation & repressive policing of sex work linked to increased risk of violence
Sex workers who face repressive policing are more likely to experience violence and poorer health and well-being, according to new research published in PLOS Medicine.

Boron nitride and silver nanoparticles to help get rid of carbon monoxide emissions
Chemists from NUST MISIS have developed a new hybrid catalyst for carbon monoxide oxidation consisting of hexagonal boron nitride and silver nanoparticles.

Study: Degrading permafrost puts Arctic infrastructure at risk by mid-century
Seventy percent of the current infrastructure in the Arctic has a high potential to be affected by thawing permafrost in the next 30 years.

Alaska earthquakes offer new insight into improving hazard assessment
Earthquake hazard assessment often overlooks intra-slab earthquakes. EarthScope Transportable Array data for the 2016 Iniskin and Nov.

New discoveries predict ability to forecast dementia from single molecule
Scientists who recently identified the molecular start of Alzheimer's disease have used that finding to determine that it should be possible to forecast which type of dementia will develop over time -- a form of personalized medicine for neurodegenerative diseases.

What more could we do to prevent veteran suicides? Survey reveals clues
Every day, 20 veterans die by suicide -- and most choose a firearm to do it.

MSMU scientists discovered the role of iron in programmed cell death
Health care professionals from I.M. Sechenov Moscow State Medical University published a review of scientific articles to illustrate how the atoms of iron initiate ferroptosis - programmed cell death.

New guidance outlines recommendations for infection control in anesthesiology
The Society for Healthcare Epidemiology of America has issued a new expert guidance on how hospitals and healthcare providers may reduce infections associated with anesthesiology procedures and equipment in the operating room.

Temple-led research team traces pathway to cardioprotection in post-ischemic heart failure
During an ischemic attack, the heart is temporarily robbed of its blood supply.

Brain activity shows development of visual sensitivity in autism
Research investigating how the brain responds to visual patterns in people with autism has shown that sensory responses change between childhood and adulthood.

The richer the reward, the faster you'll likely move to reach it, study shows
If you are wondering how long you personally are willing to stand in line to buy that hot new holiday gift, scientists at Johns Hopkins Medicine say the answer may be found in the biological rules governing how animals typically forage for food and other rewards.

Future doctors learn how to prescribe physical activity for their patients
An initiative adopted by Lancaster University to embed physical activity into the training for medical students has been showcased at a national and international level.

Pushing closer to a new cancer-fighting strategy
A molecular pathway that's frequently mutated in many different forms of cancer becomes active when cells push parts of their membranes outward into bulging protrusions, Johns Hopkins researchers report in a new study.

Transformed: the plant whose sex life fascinated Charles Darwin
Researchers have genetically transformed the Common Primrose (Primula vulgaris) for the first time in a development that could shed light on one of the plant world's most renowned reproductive systems.

Women and men with heart attack symptoms get different treatment from EMS
Researchers from the George Washington University (GW) have examined the care that women and men with heart attack symptoms receive from emergency medical services (EMS) after a 911 call and found that women were less likely to receive aspirin, be resuscitated, or be transported to the hospital in ambulances using lights and sirens.

Study links frequent red meat consumption to high levels of chemical associated with heart disease
Researchers have identified another reason to limit red meat consumption: high levels of a gut-generated chemical called trimethylamine N-oxide (TMAO), that also is linked to heart disease.

Roadmap reveals shortcut to recreate key HIV antibody for vaccines
A team led by Duke Human Vaccine Institute researchers, publishing online Dec.

Pregnant women, young children most likely to use bed nets to prevent malaria
When households in sub-Saharan Africa don't have an adequate number of insecticide-treated bed nets, pregnant women and children under five are the most likely family members to sleep under the ones they have, leaving men and school-aged children more exposed to malaria, new Johns Hopkins Center for Communication Programs (CCP) research suggests.

'Pest-controlling' bats could help save rainforests
A new study shows that several species of bats are giving Madagascar's rice farmers a vital pest control service by feasting on plagues of insects.

Successful anti-PD-1 therapy requires interaction between CD8+ T cells and dendritic cells
A team led by a Massachusetts General Hospital investigator has found that successful cancer immunotherapy targeting the PD-1 molecule requires interaction between cytotoxic CD8+ T cells, which have been considered the primary therapeutic target, and dendritic cells, critical activators of T cell response.

Better biomedical devices, wearable displays may result from tiny light-guiding structures
For the first time, researchers have fabricated light-guiding structures known as waveguides just over one micron wide in a clear silicone commonly used for biomedical applications.

Copper compound as promising quantum computing unit
Chemists at Friedrich Schiller University in Jena (Germany) have now synthesised a molecule that can perform the function of a computing unit in a quantum computer.

New study finds employee incentives can lead to unethical behavior in the workplace
Findings suggest that setting compensation goals can increase dishonesty when managers are also paid a bonus for hitting certain targets.

How returning to a prior context briefly heightens memory recall
Returning to the context where a memory was formed temporarily brings back vivid details of the episode by increasing the electrical excitability of the engrams that store the memory in the brain, a new study in Neuron shows.

Yale chemists find a new tool for understanding enzymes -- Google
In a new study published online this week in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, chemistry professor Victor Batista and his colleagues used the Google algorithm PageRank to identify key amino acids in the regulation of a bacterial enzyme essential for most microorganisms.

New sepsis treatment a step closer
Australian emergency medicine clinician-researchers are leading a large new study to understand how patients with sepsis are treated in emergency departments.

Sierra snowpack could drop significantly by end of century
A future warmer world will almost certainly feature a decline in fresh water from the Sierra Nevada mountain snowpack.

ICESat-2 reveals profile of ice sheets, sea ice, forests
With each pass of the ICESat-2 satellite, the mission is adding to datasets tracking Earth's rapidly changing ice.

The costs and trade-offs of reforming long-term care for older people
New research reveals the costs and trade-offs of reforming long-term care for older people in England.

Hazelnuts 365: Why Oregon's state nut may be the key to disease prevention
The new study, administered by the Linus Pauling Institute at Oregon State University and published in the December 2018 issue of The Journal of Nutrition, found that older adults who added hazelnuts to their diet for 16 weeks significantly improved their levels of two key micronutrients.

Nuclear events make a flower bloom
Researchers at the Nara Institute of Science and Technology (NAIST) report AGAMOUS and CRABS CLAW partner in a feed-forward system to terminate the floral meristem and form the gynoecium in Arabidopsis plants.

Taming turbulence: Seeking to make complex simulations a breeze
Previously intractable problems for designing fusion experiments, improving weather models, and understanding astrophysical phenomena such as star formation will be more easily addressed without the need for expensive supercomputers using a new model identified at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Green production of chemicals for industry
Industry consumes large quantities of crude oil to produce basic substances for drugs, cosmetics, plastics, or food.

Paternal grandfather's high access to food may indicate higher mortality risk in grandsons
A paternal grandfather's access to food during his childhood is associated with mortality risk, especially cancer mortality, in his grandson, shows a large three-generational study from Stockholm University.

Terahertz laser for sensing and imaging outperforms its predecessors
A terahertz laser designed by MIT researchers is the first to reach three key performance goals at once -- high constant power, tight beam pattern, and broad electric frequency tuning -- and could thus be valuable for a wide range of applications in chemical sensing and imaging.

Brigham researchers develop smartphone-based ovulation test
Artificial intelligence used to detect signs of ovulation in a woman's saliva automatically and at low cost.

New study makes 52 million tree stories more accessible to science
The world's primary archive of tree ring data, which holds more than 52 million cost-free records spanning 8,000 years of history, has gotten a makeover by scientists from four countries committed to making science more accessible.

Calibrating cosmic mile markers
New work from the Carnegie Supernova Project provides the best-yet calibrations for using type Ia supernovae to measure cosmic distances, which has implications for our understanding of how fast the universe is expanding and the role dark energy may play in driving this process.

Possible connection between cardiovascular disease and living near oil and gas wells
Researchers at the Colorado School of Public Health have found a possible connection between the intensity of oil and gas exploration in an area and early indicators of cardiovascular disease among nearby residents.

Custom-made artificial mother-of-pearl
ETH researchers developed an imitation comparable to mother-of-pearl, the physical properties of which can be specifically adjusted.

When less is more: A promising approach for low-cell-number epigenomic profiling
Scientists at Kyushu University and Tokyo Institute of Technology in Japan have developed a technique that enables analysis of DNA-protein interactions using very small numbers of cells, ranging from 100 to 1,000.

Maintaining the unlimited potential of stem cells
Scientists from the Salk Institute discovered a new protein complex that keeps the brakes on stem cells, allowing them to maintain their indefinite potential.

Alzheimer's drug may help battle antibiotic resistance
Dangerous antibiotic-resistant bacteria could soon be targeted with a drug initially developed to treat Alzheimer's disease.

New models sense human trust in smart machines
New 'classification models' sense how well humans trust intelligent machines they collaborate with, a step toward improving the quality of interactions and teamwork.

UFZ model in the fight against African swine fever
The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) has published a new scientific report on the current status of the spread of African swine fever within the EU.

Hypoxic dead zones found in urban streams, not just at the coast
A Duke-led study finds that hypoxic dead zones occur in nutrient-laden urban streams, not just in coastal waters.

Smelling the forest - - not the trees
New study by the University of Konstanz: Animals are much better at smelling a complex 'soup' of odorants rather than a single pure ingredient.

Pitt chemical engineers develop new theory to build improved nanomaterials
Researchers from the University of Pittsburgh's Swanson School of Engineering have developed a new theory to better predict how nanoclusters will behave when a given metal is introduced to their structure.

Effect of oral alfacalcidol on clinical outcomes in patients without secondary hyperparathyroidism R
''Treatment with active vitamin D did not decrease cardiovascular events in kidney patients undergoing hemodialysis''-- A research group in Japan reported their research results in the December 11 issue of JAMA.

Researchers discover unique immune cell likely drives chronic inflammation
For the first time, researchers have identified that an immune cell subset called gamma delta T cells that may be causing and/or perpetuating the systemic inflammation found in normal aging in the general geriatric population and in HIV-infected people who are responding well to drugs (anti-retrovirals).

Did supernovae kill off large ocean animals at dawn of Pleistocene?
The effects of a supernova -- and possibly more than one -- on large ocean life like school-bus-sized Megalodon 2.6 million years ago are detailed in a paper just published in Astrobiology.

NASA measures rainfall from Tropical Cyclone Owen's remnants at Queensland coast
The low pressure area formerly known as Tropical Cyclone Owen continued to organize and cross the southern Gulf of Carpentaria, Australia on Dec.

Pollen dispersal in traditional processing of buckwheat
In order to better understand the source and significance of crop pollen in archaeological sites, a recent study on the process of pollen dispersal in buckwheat traditional processing was published in SCIENCE CHINA Earth Sciences.

Russian scientists create one-of-a-kind technology for brain disorders treatment
New brain disorders prophylaxis and treatment system has been developed by the scientists of Ural Federal University, Russia. 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