Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

January 15, 2019
UCI study identifies a new way by which the human brain marks time
With a little help from HBO's 'Curb Your Enthusiasm,' University of California, Irvine neurobiologists have uncovered a key component of how the human brain marks time.

Scientists identify gene contributing to prostate cancer drug resistance
Researchers have discovered how a gene involved in regulating hormone receptors may contribute to drug resistance in some prostate cancer patients.

Food ads targeting black and Hispanic youth almost exclusively promote unhealthy products
Restaurant, food, and beverage companies target Hispanic and Black children and teens with ads almost exclusively for fast food, candy, sugary drinks, and unhealthy snacks, according to a new report from the Rudd Center for Food Policy & Obesity at the University of Connecticut, the Council on Black Health at Drexel University, and Salud America! at UT Health San Antonio.

Personalized treatment benefits kidney cancer patients
Personalized treatment plans may extend life expectancy for early-stage kidney cancer patients who have risk factors for worsening kidney disease, according to a new study.

Antihypertension drug losartan may improve treatment of ovarian cancer
A new study from a Massachusetts General Hospital research team has found that the hypertension drug losartan, which targets the angiotensin signaling pathway, may improve the effectiveness of chemotherapy agents used to treat ovarian cancer.

Staying fit can cut your risk of heart attack by half
Raise your pulse, break a sweat and do it several times a week.

Gene-editing tool CRISPR/Cas9 shown to limit impact of certain parasitic diseases
For the first time, researchers at the George Washington University have successfully used the gene-editing tool CRISPR/Cas9 to limit the impact of parasitic worms responsible for schistosomiasis and for liver fluke infection, which can cause a diverse spectrum of human disease including bile duct cancer. 

Protective effects of ADM-RAMP2 system make it a new therapeutic target for retinal vein occlusion
A clot in the retinal vein can lead to severe and irreversible loss of vision.

Regulation and potential drug targets of tumor-associated Tregs
Multiple studies indicate that tumour-associated regulatory T cells (Tregs) play a detrimental role in the antitumour immune responses.

'Outdated' management plan increases risks to Alaska's large carnivores
Alaskan wildlife management that prioritizes reducing bear and wolf populations so hunters can kill more moose, caribou and deer is both backward and lacks scientific monitoring.

Protein alteration controls cell's response to stress, immunity and lifespan
Scientists have revealed a key mechanism in worms that is involved in controlling the cell's response to stress, a study in eLife reports.

Researchers raise bar for successful management of severe atopic dermatitis
A team of investigators from the University of Colorado College of Nursing at CU Anschutz Medical Campus and National Jewish Health has identified comprehensive guidelines for managing severe atopic dermatitis (AD), the most common form of eczema.

Stroke drug may also prevent Alzheimer's disease, say USC researchers
Researchers from the University of Southern California have discovered that a drug currently being developed to treat stroke patients could also prevent Alzheimer's disease.

Research confirms nerve cells made from skin cells are a valid lab model for studying disease
Researchers from the Salk Institute, along with collaborators at Stanford University and Baylor College of Medicine, have shown that cells from mice that have been induced to grow into nerve cells using a previously published method have molecular signatures matching neurons that developed naturally in the brain.

Gene expression study sheds new light on African Salmonella
Scientists at the University of Liverpool have completed one of the largest bacterial comparative gene expression studies to date and taken another step forward in understanding the African Salmonella strain that is currently killing around 400,000 people each year in sub-Saharan Africa.

Back to the future with CD4 testing: improving HIV care in low- and middle-income countries
A practical resource-based public health approach for the rapid initiation of antiretroviral therapy in HIV-infected individuals living in low- and middle-income countries could save thousands of lives, according to an Essay published Jan.

Physical activity reduces mortality in patients with diabetes
Patients with type 2 diabetes should be prescribed physical activity to control blood sugar and improve heart health.

For-profit nursing schools associated with lower performance on nurse licensure test
A new study published today by researchers at the George Washington University Milken Institute School of Public Health finds that for-profit ownership of nursing school programs is significantly associated with lower performance on a national nursing licensure exam than public and nonprofit programs.

Muscle stem cells can drive cancer that arises in Duchenne muscular dystrophy
Scientists from Sanford Burnham Prebys Medical Discovery Institute (SBP) have demonstrated that muscle stem cells may give rise to rhabdomyosarcoma that occurs during DMD--and identified two genes linked to the tumor's growth.

Assessing the performance of multiple influenza forecasting models
In what the authors believe is the first documented comparison of several real-time infectious disease forecasting models by different teams across many seasons, five research groups report this week that a majority of models consistently showed higher accuracy than historical baseline models.

Fever alters immune cells so they can better reach infections
Fever is known to help power up our immune cells, and scientists in Shanghai have new evidence explaining how.

Genes reveal clues about people's potential life expectancy
Scientists say they can predict whether a person can expect to live longer or die sooner than average, by looking at their DNA.

Harvard research reveals potential therapeutic target for ALS
Harvard-led ALS research revealed that the protein TDP-43 regulates a gene called Stathmin2 (STMN2).

Differentiating summer and winter rainfall in South Asia around 4.2 ka climatic 'event'
New results point to a 200-year period of abnormally strong winter precipitation between c.4.5-4.3 thousand years ago

Doubts about ISO 9001 quality certificates of Chinese companies
A qualitative study carried out by a research group led by the UPV/EHU professor Iñaki Heras-Saizarbitoria, in collaboration with the Université Laval of Quebec, concludes that fake ISO 9001 quality certificates are very widespread across Chinese companies and that the certification processes of the auditing companies lack credibility.

UM professor co-authors report on the use of biotechnology in forests
University of Montana Professor Diana Six is one of 12 authors of a new report that addresses the potential for biotechnology to provide solutions for protecting forest trees from insect and pathogen outbreaks, which are increasing because of climate change and expanded global trade.

Medical detection dogs help diabetes patients regulate insulin levels
New research by the University of Bristol in collaboration with Medical Detection Dogs has found that the best trained alert dogs have the potential to vastly improve the quality of life of people living with Type 1 diabetes.

New study shows animals may get used to drones
A new study in Conservation Physiology shows that over time, bears get used to drones.

RUDN pedologists found out a correct combination of nitrogen fertilizers and plastic mulch
RUDN pedologists studied the combined effect of nitrogen-containing fertilizers and plastic mulching.

Advances in the study of drugs to combat cognitive impairment in schizophrenia
A study by the UPV/EHU has assessed the effectiveness of various drugs, which are used to delay cognitive deterioration in patients with Alzheimer's, in improving cognitive impairment displayed by patients with schizophrenia.

Quality of life in adolescents recovering from sports-related concussion or fracture
Researchers studied health-related quality of life in adolescents with sports-related concussion or extremity fracture during their recovery periods.

Researchers discovered new immune response regulators
The research groups of Academy Professor Riitta Lahesmaa and Research Director Laura Elo from Turku Centre for Biotechnology have discovered new proteins that regulate T cells in the human immune system.

POLAR experiment reveals orderly chaos of black holes
An international consortium of scientists studying gamma-ray bursts (GRBs) as part of the POLAR (GRB polarimeter) experiment has revealed that high-energy photon emissions from black holes are neither completely chaotic nor completely organized, but a mixture.

Pregnancy: Weight gain difficult to influence through lifestyle counseling
If a pregnant woman gains excessive weight, it can pose a problem for both the mother and child.

Fraction of US outpatient treatment centers offer medication for opioid addiction
Despite the mounting death toll of America's opioid crisis, only a minority of facilities that treat substance use disorders offer patients buprenorphine, naltrexone or methadone -- the three FDA-approved medications for the long-term management of opioid use disorder, according to a new study from researchers at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health.

Power stations driven by light
The smallest building blocks within the power stations of organisms which get their energy directly from the sun are basically miniature reactors surrounded by collectors which capture photons and forward them to the center.

Pioneering surgery restores movement to children paralyzed by acute flaccid myelitis
An innovative and complex surgery involving nerve transfers at Hospital for Special Surgery is restoring movement to young patients with paralysis caused by acute flaccid myelitis.

New integrative stratigraphy and timescale for China released
A special issue, edited by professor SHEN Shuzhong and professor RONG Jiayu of the Nanjing Institute of Geology and Palaeontology of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, summarizes the latest advances in stratigraphy and timescale as well as discusses the correlation among different blocks in China and with international timescales.

Ultra ultrasound to transform new tech
A new, more sensitive method to measure ultrasound may revolutionize everything from medical devices to unmanned vehicles.

Genome doubling, cell size and novelty
In the 2019 Coulter Review, 'Polyploidy, the Nucleotype, and Novelty: The Impact of Genome Doubling on the Biology of the Cell,' published in the International Journal of Plant Sciences (180:1-52), Jeff J.

New insights into what Neolithic people ate in southeastern Europe
New research, led by the University of Bristol, has shed new light on the eating habits of Neolithic people living in southeastern Europe using food residues from pottery extracts dating back more than 8,000 years.

Study examines black mangroves impact on the salt marsh food web
Warmer temperatures are causing more tropical species to move northward.

Multimaterial 3D printing used to develop fast response stiffness-tunable soft actuator
Researchers from the Singapore University of Technology and Design and Shanghai Jiao Tong University have designed and fabricated a fast-response, stiffness tunable (FRST) soft actuator which is able to complete a softening-stiffening cycle within 32 seconds.

Scientists identify two new species of fungi in retreating Arctic glacier
Two new species of fungi have made an appearance in a rapidly melting glacier on Ellesmere Island in the Canadian Arctic, just west of Greenland.

Difficulties with audiovisual processing contributes to dyslexia in children
A University at Buffalo psychologist has published a neuroimaging study that could help develop tests for early identification of dyslexia.

Study: Despite progress, gay fathers and their children still structurally stigmatized
A study published in the February 2019 'Pediatrics' journal suggests the majority of gay fathers and their children continue to experience stigma with potentially harmful physical and psychological effects, despite legal, media and social advances.

Physicists experimentally verify the multipartite generalized Hardy's paradox
In a recent article published in Science Bulletin, a joint team led by Professors Jian-Wei Pan, Chao-Yang Lu and Nai-Le Liu at the University of Science and Technology of China, and Jing-Ling Chen at Nankai University, has for the first time verified the multipartite Hardy's paradox in experiment.

Using satellites to measure rates of ice mass loss in glaciers
Researchers from Friedrich-Alexander-Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg have now investigated all glacial areas in South America in more detail than ever before, from the tropical areas to the subpolar regions.

Scientists have identified a bone marrow backup system
New research from the Stowers Institute for Medical Research has identified a backup for an important biological system -- the hematopoietic system, whose adult stem cells constantly replenish the body's blood supply.

Cop voice: Jay-Z, Public Enemy songs highlight police tactic to frighten people of color
What do songs by artists like Jay-Z and Public Enemy have in common?

JAMA report outlines recommendations for evaluation and management of penicillin allergy
A review article in the Jan. 15, 2019, issue of JAMA recommends best practices for evaluation of reported penicillin allergies and provides clinicians with guidance and tools to help determine appropriate procedures based on the severity of previously reported reactions.

Why haven't cancer cells undergone genetic meltdowns?
Cancer first develops as a single cell going rogue, with mutations that trigger aggressive growth at all costs to the health of the organism.

Unraveling threads of bizarre hagfish's explosive slime
Jean-Luc Thiffeault, a University of Wisconsin-Madison math professor, and collaborators Randy Ewoldt and Gaurav Chaudhary of the University of Illinois have modeled the hagfish's gag-inducing defense mechanism mathematically, publishing their work today in the Journal of the Royal Society Interface.

Idled farmland presents habitat restoration opportunities in San Joaquin Desert
Most of the native habitat in California's San Joaquin Desert has been converted to row crops and orchards, leaving 35 threatened or endangered species confined to isolated patches of habitat.

Personality type could shape attitudes toward body weight of others, researchers say
Researchers found that personality traits have significant bearing on a person's attitudes toward obesity, their implicit theories of weight and their willingness to engage in derisive fat talk or weight discrimination.

Brilliant glow of paint-on semiconductors comes from ornate quantum physics
A new wave of semiconductors that can be painted on is on the horizon.

Purchase receipts with easily erasable ink contain cancer-infertility inducing substances
An international research led by the UGR shows that 90 percent of store and supermarket receipts are made of thermal paper containing bisphenol A (BPA).

Vampire bat venom could hold key to new medical treatments
Vampire bats could hold the key to new treatments for a range of serious medical problems, but researchers have hit a snag accessing the specimens needed to advance their work.

Democratizing data science
MIT researchers are hoping to advance the democratization of data science with a new tool for nonstatisticians that automatically generates models for analyzing raw data.

Effects of linoleic acid on inflammatory response depend on genes
The effects of linoleic acid on the human body are largely dependent on genes, a new study from the University of Eastern Finland shows.

Researchers develop new zoning tool that provides global topographic datasets in minutes
With the increased availability of remote sensing technologies, scientists now have access to high-resolution datasets on Earth's surface properties at the global scale.

Poisons or medicines? Cyanobacteria toxins protect tiny lake dwellers from parasites
The cyanobacteria blooms that plague western Lake Erie each summer are both an unsightly nuisance and a potential public health hazard, producing liver toxins that can be harmful to humans and their pets.

Part-time working mothers with flexible schedules end up doing more work without pay
Flexible schedules cause part-time working mothers to work longer without pay.

Velcro for human cells
Freiburg researchers engineer cellular adhesion receptors that can be controlled with light.

Conserving large carnivores in Alaska requires overhauling state policy
Large carnivore management in Alaska should be based on rigorous science and monitoring of the status and trends of carnivore populations, according to a Perspective article published Jan.

Poo transplant effective treatment for chronic bowel condition
Poo transplant or 'Faecal microbiota transplantation' (FMT) can successfully treat patients with ulcerative colitis, new research from the University of Adelaide shows.

11,500-year-old animal bones in Jordan suggest early dogs helped humans hunt
11,500 years ago in what is now northeast Jordan, people began to live alongside dogs and may also have used them for hunting, a new study from the University of Copenhagen shows.

States with fewer melanoma diagnoses have higher death rates
Researchers at University of Utah Health conducted a state-by-state analysis to understand the geographic disparities for patients diagnosed with melanoma.

Bear necessities: New study highlights importance of water resources for Andean bears
A new study highlights the importance of water for Andean bears living in the mountain forests of Peru.

New conservation practice could reduce nitrogen pollution in agricultural drainage water
In a new study, University of Illinois scientists have estimated that a new conservation practice known as saturated buffers could reduce nitrogen from agricultural drainage by 5 to 10 percent.

Anonymous yet trustworthy
Minority and dissident communities face a perplexing challenge in countries with authoritarian governments.

How Candida albicans exploits lack of oxygen to cause disease
Scientists from Umeå university have shown how the yeast Candida albicans can modulate and adapt to low oxygen levels in different body niches to cause infection and to harm the host.

Mathematical model can improve our knowledge on cancer
Researchers at the Niels Bohr Institute, University of Copenhagen, have developed a new mathematical tool, which can improve our understanding of what happens when cells lose their polarity (direction) in diseases such as cancer.

Light up logic: Engineers from UTokyo and RIKEN perform computational logic with light
For the first time, researchers performed logic operations -- the basis of computation -- with a chemical device using electric fields and ultraviolet light.

Penn engineers 3D print smart objects with 'embodied logic'
Using stimuli-responsive materials and geometric principles, Penn Engineers have designed structures that have 'embodied logic.' Through their physical and chemical makeup alone, they are able to determine which of multiple possible responses to make in response to their environment.

Keeping roads in good shape reduces greenhouse gas emissions, Rutgers-led study finds
Keeping road pavement in good shape saves money and energy and reduces greenhouse gas emissions, more than offsetting pollution generated during road construction, according to a Rutgers-led study.

Kiel physicists discover new effect in the interaction of plasmas with solids
If a plasma comes in contact with a solid, under certain circumstances the surface is changed fundamentally and permanently.

Engineered T cells promote long-term organ transplant acceptance
Organ transplant rejection is a major problem in transplantation medicine.

Enhanced research reporting method to improve patient care
Patients could benefit from improved care and outcomes thanks to new research guidance developed as part of a University of Stirling-led study.

Alterations in hippocampal structural connections differentiate between responders of ECT
A new study in people with major depression reports that electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) induces changes in the fibers connecting the hippocampus to brain regions involved in mood and emotion. 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