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Science News | Science Current Events | Brightsurf | March 05, 2019


Scientists develop a tunable bio-imaging device using terahertz plasmonics
Researchers at Tokyo Tech have developed an easy-to-use, tunable biosensor tailored for the terahertz range.
Physicists analyze rotational dynamics of galaxies and influence of the photon mass
The rotation of stars in galaxies such as our Milky Way is puzzling.
Singing for science: How the arts can help students who struggle most
Incorporating the arts -- rapping, dancing, drawing -- into science lessons can help low-achieving students retain more knowledge and possibly help students of all ability levels be more creative in their learning, finds a new study by Johns Hopkins University.
Analysis of billions of Wikipedia searches reveals biodiversity secrets
An international team of researchers from the University of Oxford, the University of Birmingham and Ben-Gurion University of the Negev have found that the way in which people use the internet is closely tied to patterns and rhythms in the natural world.
Overcoming cardiovascular disease with a magnetically-steerable guidewire microrobot
DGIST Professor Hongsoo Choi's team developed an attachable guidewire that can move and steer towards a desired direction inside complicated blood vessels.
The secret behind maximum plant height: water!
Ecologists from the South China Botanical Garden (SCBG) of the Chinese Academy of Sciences concluded that such coordination plays an important role in determining global sorting of plant species, and can be useful in predicting future species distribution under climate change scenarios.
A fungus usually found on skin might play a role in Crohn's disease
A fungus commonly found in human hair follicles also resides in the gut, where it may worsen intestinal disorders such as inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) in patients with a certain genetic makeup, researchers report March 5 in the journal Cell Host & Microbe.
Fasting-mimicking diet holds promise for treating people with inflammatory bowel disease
Fasting-mimicking diet holds promise for treating people with inflammatory bowel disease, a USC study finds.
A step closer to an HIV cure
Scientists found no rebound of HIV in two patients who stopped taking their HIV medication after they received stem cell transplants for a hematological [blood] disease.
Creating more potent cancer therapy using 'theranostics'
A City of Hope scientist and his colleagues have developed a user-friendly approach to creating 'theranostics' -- therapy combined with diagnostics -- that target specific tumors and diseases.
Nanotechnology and sunlight clear the way for better visibility
A new coating developed by ETH researchers prevents fogging on transparent surfaces.
HIV remission achieved in second patient
A second person has experienced sustained remission from HIV-1 after ceasing treatment, reports a paper led by researchers at UCL and Imperial College London.
When changing one atom makes molecules better
The group of Nuno Maulide, recently named the Scientist of the Year 2018 in Austria, in collaboration with the group of Harald Sitte, has now reported a facile method for the replacement of hydrogen with fluorine in important drug molecules.
Women scientists get less federal funding than men
First-time women principal investigator scientists received considerably less funding from the National Institutes of Health compared to first-time male principal investigators, even at top research institutions.
3D simulation of bone densitometry predict better the risk of fracture due to osteoporosis
Osteoporosis is a skeletal disease in which there is a decrease in bone mass density.
Nanoparticles help realize 'spintronic' devices
For the first time researchers have demonstrated a new way to perform functions essential to future computation three orders of magnitude faster than current commercial devices.
Rethinking old-growth forests using lichens as an indicator of conservation value
Two Canadian biologists propose a better way to assess the conservation value of North American old-growth forests -- using lichens, sensitive bioindicators of environmental change.
Attitudes about health affect how older adults engage with negative health news
To get older adults to pay attention to important health information, preface it with the good news about their health.
Clinical trial examines nutritional strategies to prevent major depressive disorder among overweight, obese adults
A randomized clinical trial examined the effects of two nutritional strategies (multinutrient supplementation and food-related behavioral activation therapy) and their combination on preventing new episodes of major depressive disorder in overweight and obese adults over one year.
University of Utah biologists experimentally trigger adaptive radiation
Using host-specific parasites isolated on individual pigeon 'islands,' the scientists showed that descendants of a single population of feather lice adapted rapidly in response to preening.
Study shows success of measles vaccine campaigns in India
A mass measles vaccination campaign saved tens of thousands of children's lives in India between 2010 and 2013, according to a report published today in eLife.
'Test and Treat' reduces new HIV infections by a third in southern Africa communities
Results from largest ever HIV prevention trial suggest strategy could make a significant contribution to controlling epidemic.
Electrical signals kick off flatworm regeneration
In a study publishing March 5 in Biophysical Journal, scientists report that electrical activity is the first known step in the tissue-regeneration process of planarian flatworms, starting before the earliest known genetic machinery kicks in and setting off the downstream activities of gene transcription needed to construct new heads or tails.
Heroin users aware of fentanyl, but at high risk of overdosing
Most heroin users in Baltimore, a city heavily affected by the opioid epidemic, recognize that the heroin they buy is now almost always laced with the highly dangerous synthetic opioid fentanyl, according to a new study led by researchers at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health.
Study finds robots can detect breast cancer as well as radiologists
A new paper published in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute suggests that artificial intelligence systems may be able to perform as accurately as radiologists in the evaluation of digital mammography in breast cancer screening.
Kids with cochlear implants since infancy more likely to speak, not sign
Researchers from Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children's Hospital of Chicago present further evidence that deaf children who received cochlear implants (implanted electronic hearing device) before 12 months of age learn to more rapidly understand spoken language and are more likely to develop spoken language as their exclusive form of communication.
Mighty mites give scrawny beetles the edge over bigger rivals
Smaller beetles who consistently lose fights over resources can gain a competitive advantage over their larger rivals by teaming up with another species.
Mom-to-mom phone calls lift breastfeeding rate
A new study finds regular phone calls between mothers can boost breastfeeding rates.
Sleep tight! Researchers identify the beneficial role of sleep
Why do animals sleep? Why do humans 'waste' a third of their lives sleeping?
Study: Climate change is leading to unpredictable ecosystem disruption for migratory birds
Using data on 77 North American migratory bird species from the eBird citizen-science program, scientists at the Cornell Lab of Ornithology say that, in as little as four decades, it may be very difficult to predict how climate change will affect migratory bird populations and the ecosystems they inhabit.
Nitric acid and ammonia electrosynthesis
The commercial synthesis methods for HNO3 and NH3 chemicals is Ostwald and Haber-Bosch process, respectively, but both of them are energy-intensive and high-emission.
Genetic 'usual suspects' identified in researchers' new list
After analyzing tens of thousands of data samples, researchers have created a list of genes that ranks them based on how frequently they are implicated in specific diseases.
NREL pioneers cleaner route to upcycle plastics into superior products
Researchers at the US Department of Energy's National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) have discovered a method of plastics upcycling -- transforming discarded products into new, high-value materials of better quality and environmental value -- that could economically incentivize the recycling of waste plastics and help solve one of the world's most looming pollution problems.
Molecular puzzle reveals unknown stages of fetal development
By applying gene analysis to individual cells from early mouse embryos, researchers at Karolinska Institutet in Sweden have discovered previously unknown cellular stages of fetal development from fertilized egg to living being.
Gaining a little weight after quitting tobacco is offset by the benefits for people with diabetes
People with diabetes who quit smoking tobacco may have a lower risk of heart attacks, strokes and other cardiovascular diseases -- and weight gain following smoking cessation does not mitigate the health benefits among these patients, according to one study.
Results of ABATE infection trial published
Daily bathing with an antiseptic soap, plus nasal ointment for patients with prior antibiotic resistant bacteria, reduced hospital acquired infections among patients with central venous catheters and other devices that pierce the skin, according to results of the ABATE Infection Trial.
Common chest infection puts babies at risk of hospitalization for asthma in preschool years
Infants who are admitted to hospital with the common infection bronchiolitis are at increased risk of further emergency hospital admissions for asthma, wheezing and respiratory illness in the first five years of their life.
Nuclear medicine imaging monitors effectiveness of therapy for melanoma patients
Nuclear medicine imaging with PET/CT can monitor the effectiveness of immunotherapy treatment for metastatic melanoma and predict outcome.
Scientists put ichthyosaurs in virtual water tanks
Using computer simulations and 3D models, paleontologists from the University of Bristol have uncovered more detail on how Mesozoic sea dragons swam.
Weather-responsive intersections could ease traffic congestion
Cities could ease congestion and improve safety during snowstorms by tweaking the timing of traffic lights to take road conditions into account.
Copper catalyst distinguishing two different carbonyl compounds -- synthesis of 1,2-diols
Reductive coupling of two different carbonyl compounds A and B was known to yield three kinds of 1,2-diol, i.e.
Motion cameras more effective than fences and wolf culling at saving caribou
New research suggests there may be more effective and less invasive strategies to reduce the ability of wolves to encounter caribou: motion-triggered cameras capture photographs of wolves, caribou, and other wildlife species in the Canadian Oil Sands to study the habitat use patterns of the animals and test management strategies aimed at reducing the impacts of the linear developments on caribou.
Capturing bacteria that eat and breathe electricity
WSU researchers traveled to Yellowstone National Park to find bacteria that may help solve some of the biggest challenges facing humanity -- environmental pollution and sustainable energy.
Successful development of high-performance color filter-free image sensor by DGIST
A technology that has maximized space intensity by eliminating color filter from an image sensor has been developed.
Scientists study neutron scattering for researching magnetic materials
Physicists from the University of Luxembourg and their research partners have demonstrated for the first time in a comprehensive study how different magnetic materials can be examined using neutron scattering techniques.
Why the brain can be blamed for children unknowingly being left to die in a hot car
Study explains the psychological and neural basis of how responsible people can fail to remember to do something in the future, creating the potential to make a fatal error.
Daily intake of nutritional supplements cannot prevent depression
Researcher Mariska Bot from Amsterdam UMC reported: 'Daily intake of nutritional supplements over a year does not effectively prevent onset of a major depressive episode in this sample.
Integrated therapy treating obesity and depression is effective
An intervention combining behavioral weight loss treatment and problem-solving therapy with as-needed antidepressant medication for participants with co-occurring obesity and depression improved weight loss and depressive symptoms compared with routine physician care, according to an article published in the Journal of the American Medical Association.
Infection control technique may reduce infections in patients with catheters, drains
Each year, approximately 5 million patients in the United States receive treatment that includes the insertion of a medical device such as a catheter, which puts them at increased risk of potentially life-threatening infection.
Location and competition
Those of us who drive regularly are keenly aware of gas prices and their daily fluctuations.
Story tips from the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory, March 2019
Neutrons used to study how an antibacterial peptide fights bacteria; decade-long study finds higher CO2 levels caused 30 percent more wood growth in U.S. trees; ultrasonic additive manufacturing to embed fiber optic sensors in heat- and radiation-resistant materials could yield safer reactors; ORNL analyzes 'dark spots' where informal neighborhoods may lack power access; new Transportation Energy Data Book released.
The grassroots revolution making it normal for children to 'play out' again
Children's physical activity levels are at an all-time low, with only one in five children getting the minimum recommended one hour a day of moderate to vigorous physical exercise.
Dingoes should remain a distinct species in Australia
Since the arrival of British settlers over 230 years ago, most Australians have assumed dingoes are a breed of wild dog.
Nutritional supplements cannot prevent depression, research shows
A daily intake of nutritional supplements won't help stave off the onset of depression, a new study has revealed.
Study confirms and quantifies Zika-microcephaly link in Brazil
Women infected with Zika virus early in pregnancy are almost 17 times more likely to have a child with microcephaly, according to a study published this week in PLOS Medicine by Oliver Brady of the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, UK, and colleagues.
UM researchers study Alaska forest fires over past 450 years
In a recent study, University of Montana researchers explored the ways forest succession and climate variability interacted and influenced fires in Alaska's boreal forests over the past four centuries -- from 1550 to 2015.
A silver lining like no other
New technology from the University of South Australia is revolutionizing safe vaccination practices through antibacterial, silver-loaded dissolvable microneedle patches, which not only sterilize the injection site to inhibit the growth of bacteria, but also physically dissolve after administration.
UMaine-led team discovers protein, lipid connection that could aid new influenza therapies
For the first time, a connection is shown between influenza virus surface protein HA and host cell lipid PIP2.
Small brains, big picture: Study unveils C. elegans' microscopic mysteries
Researchers discover how brain cells in the microscopic worm C.
Discovering the next generation of catalysts
The use of solar and wind energy must be doubled to meet the world's demand for clean energy over the next 30 years.
A new technology developed to detect and analyze colorless and transparent biomaterials
DGIST Professor Jae Eun Jang's team, plasmonic nano structure developed a technology that generates colorless and transparent biomaterials.
Results of trial to stem hospital-acquired bacterial infections published
A trial evaluated whether daily bathing with the antiseptic soap chlorhexidine (CHG) -- and in those patients with MRSA, adding the nasal antibiotic mupirocin -- more effectively reduced hospital-acquired bacterial infections than bathing with ordinary soap and water.
Life-threatening birth complication rate increasing across US racial, ethnic groups
Racial and ethnic disparities in severe maternal morbidity--life-threatening maternal complications associated with childbirth--have persisted and increased at high rates among U.S. women, according to an analysis of nearly 20 years of California hospital records funded by the National Institutes of Health.
Owls against owls in a challenge for survival
Scientists are puzzling out how to address the declining numbers of northern spotted owls (NSO) in their Pacific Northwest forest habitat.
More immediate concerns beat heart health in the priorities and behaviors of young women
Although it is the leading cause of death in women, more than 75 percent of young women worry little or not at all about getting heart disease.
Menstrual cycle phase influences cocaine craving
Menstrual cycle may influence addiction risk in women, according to a new study in Biological Psychiatry by researchers at the National Institute on Drug Abuse and University of Maryland School of Medicine.
Vegan-based fasting diet reduces inflammatory bowel disease pathology in mice
Dietary modifications are frequently used to treat inflammatory bowel diseases (IBDs).
Old age care crisis: Are migrant care workers a suitable solution for state and families?
Germany is facing an old age care crisis. A certain amount of support can be obtained by employing foreign care staff.
A new way to map cell regulatory networks
A new mathematical method developed by researchers at Cincinnati Children's and New York University may soon make it much easier to conduct more of the complex data analysis needed to drive advances in the exploding field of personalized medicine.
What makes people willing to sacrifice their own self-interest for another person?
Researchers show that people are more willing to sacrifice for a collaborator than for someone working just as hard but working independently.
Could genetic breakthrough finally help take the sting out of mouth ulcers?
A large breakthrough has been made in the genetic understanding of mouth ulcers which could provide potential for a new drug to prevent or heal the painful lesions.
Tissue model reveals how RNA will act on the liver
MIT researchers have shown an engineered model of human liver tissue can be used to investigate nucleic acid-based therapies, such as RNA interference, before testing them in patients.
1 in 3 students with ADHD receive no school interventions, study finds
One in three students with ADHD received no school-based interventions and two of three received no classroom management, researchers found in the largest study of children and teens with ADHD ever conducted.
Scientists levitate particles with sound to find out how they cluster together
Scientists from the University of Chicago and the University of Bath used sound waves to levitate particles, revealing new insights about how materials cluster together in the absence of gravity -- principles which underlie everything from how molecules assemble to the very early stages of planet formation from space dust.
Modern beer yeast emerged from mix of European grape wine, Asian rice wine yeast
For thousands of years brewers made beer using specialized strains of the budding yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae.
Sacrificing accuracy to see the big picture
Humans have a knack for finding patterns in the world around them.
Can changes in physical activity, sedentary behavior in people with type 2 diabetes last?
The American Diabetes Association recommends people with type 2 diabetes regularly do physical activity that is moderate to vigorous in intensity and reduce their time being sedentary.
NASA's infrared vision reveals Tropical Cyclone Haleh's power
Tropical Cyclone Haleh maintained an eye as NASA's Aqua satellite passed overhead and collected temperature information on the storm and the ocean waters it was moving through.
Looks matter when it comes to success in STEM, study shows
Demand for science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) degrees is on the rise.
Social and behavioral sciences for the intelligence community
The social and behavioral sciences (SBS) offer an essential contribution to the mission of the U.S.
New reactor-liner alloy material offers strength, resilience
A new tungsten-based alloy developed at Los Alamos National Laboratory can withstand unprecedented amounts of radiation without damage.
Soda, sugar-sweetened beverages linked to more severe symptoms for people with MS
For people with multiple sclerosis (MS), drinking around 290 calories per day of soda or other sugar-sweetened beverages, or the equivalent of about two cans of non-diet soda, may be tied to more severe symptoms and a higher level of disability compared to people with MS who seldom consume sugar-sweetened beverages, according to a preliminary study released today that will be presented at the American Academy of Neurology's 71st Annual Meeting in Philadelphia, May 4-10, 2019.
New Regenstrief studies report drug focused approach insufficient to manage ICU delirium
The results of two new Regenstrief Institute trials published in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society underscore and confirm the need to look to options other than medication to lower the duration or severity of delirium in intensive care unit (ICU) patients.
Alzheimer's treatment holds promise for primary progressive aphasia patients
Scientists have discovered that an existing therapy frequently used to treat Alzheimer's disease might also work on patients with primary progressive aphasia (PPA), a type of dementia that destroys language and currently has no treatment.
Training beyond exhaustion can prevent learning
Researchers have found that muscle fatigue caused by overexertion when practicing a skill can affect the task in hand and impair learning afterwards.
A study by the UC3M researches the limits of topological insulators using sound waves
Research in which the Universidad Carlos III de Madrid (UC3M) is taking part analyses the future of topological insulators using sound waves, meaning materials that behave like acoustic insulators in their interior, but at the same time allow the movement of sound waves at their surface.
BU conducts first experimental evaluation of pharmaceutical industry-led access program
A new study led by Boston University School of Public Health (BUSPH) researchers is the first to use a randomized trial design to generate rigorous evidence on the impact of a pharmaceutical industry-led medicines access program.
Updated dietary reference intakes for sodium and potassium
A new report from the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine reviews current evidence and updates intake recommendations known as the Dietary Reference Intakes (DRIs) for sodium and potassium that were established in 2005.
Distracted drivers 29 times more likely to wreck in a highway work zone
The study uses data from the Transportation Research Board's second Strategic Highway Research Program's Naturalistic Driving Study.
Global analysis of billions of Wikipedia searches reveals biodiversity secrets
An international team of researchers from the University of Oxford, the University of Birmingham and Ben-Gurion University of the Negev have found that the way in which people use the internet is closely tied to patterns and rhythms in the natural world.
Matrix could ensure vital copper supplies
Researchers have identified a matrix of risks that the mining industry must overcome to unlock vitally important copper reserves.
Spin devices rev up
Electric currents drive all our electronic devices. The emerging field of spintronics looks to replace electric currents with what are known as spin currents.
Male bottlenose dolphins form bachelor groups with their relatives
New research has analysed the behaviour of 12 dolphin social groups in South Australia's Coffin Bay region and shows males who team up in groups of two to five to form beneficial alliances may have more success.

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