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Science Current Events and Science News | Brightsurf | March 11, 2019


Academic performance of urban children with asthma worse than peers without asthma
A new study published in Annals of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology shows urban children with poorly controlled asthma, particularly those who are ethnic minorities, also suffer academically.
Kids' concussion recovery like snakes and ladders game
During the first 24 hours, home and leisure activities may be undertaken as long as they are only for five minutes at a time, and stopped if symptoms increase.
Daylight savings sees 'sleepy consumers' with a wider variety in their shopping carts
A recent study from the UBC Sauder School of Business found that sleepier consumers reach for more variety at their local stores to help them stay awake, including those impacted by loss of sleep due to daylight saving time.
Colorectal cancer in patients with early onset is distinct from that in older patients
New research indicates that colorectal cancer diagnosed at an early age has clinical and genetic features that are different from those seen in traditional colorectal cancer diagnosed later in life.
Air pollution may impact fetal cardiovascular system, Rutgers study says
Microscopic particles in air pollution inhaled by pregnant women may damage fetal cardiovascular development, according to a study by Rutgers researchers.
Mindfulness found to improve mental health of students
Mental health among university students could be improved by introducing mindfulness training.
The largest ever catalog of bacteria in the human body contain over 150 thousands genomes
The largest ever catalog of bacterial and archaeal microbes commonly populating the human body across worldwide populations has been assembled.
When a cell's 'fingerprint' can be a weapon against cancer
A research team led by Nuno Barbosa Morais, group leader at iMM in Lisbon, computationally analyzed the expression of marker genes that are associated with a 'fingerprint' of cancer cells in thousands of tumors and revealed its therapeutic potential in the fight against cancer.
Study finds that parents often permit e-cigarette use in homes and cars with children
A study led by MassGeneral Hospital for Children researchers, the first to examine parents' rules about prohibiting both electronic cigarette and regular cigarette use in homes and cars, shows that parents who use e-cigarettes -- whether or not they also smoke traditional cigarettes -- were much more likely to permit e-cigarette use inside both homes and cars than parents who smoke only traditional cigarettes
NIH study shows many preteens screen positive for suicide risk during ER visits
A new study found nearly one-third of youth ages 10 to 12 years screened positive for suicide risk in emergency departments.
Gender-based salary gap persists among academic emergency medicine physicians
Although overall salaries for emergency physicians have increased over the past four years, and despite a call to end gender disparities in salary, men still make 18 percent more than women, and a $12,000 gender salary gap remains essentially unchanged.
What's for dinner? Sushi, with a side of crickets
While insects have been consumed for centuries worldwide, many people still haven't warmed to the idea of a creepy-crawly on the tongue.
A tale of two cities: Is air pollution improving in Paris and London?
For the first time, a joint air pollution study across two mega-cities -- London and Paris -- measures the impact of policies designed to reduce air pollution from urban traffic over the last 12 years.
Researchers turn liquid metal into a plasma
For the first time, researchers at the University of Rochester's Laboratory for Laser Energetics (LLE) have found a way to turn a liquid metal into a plasma and to observe the temperature where a liquid under high-density conditions crosses over to a plasma state.
A school that values diversity could result in health benefits for students of color
Students of color who attend schools with a culture that emphasizes the value of diversity -- specifically schools whose mission statements mention goals such as serving a diverse student body and appreciating diversity and cultural differences -- show better cardiovascular health than peers whose schools do not express such values, according to a new collaborative study done by researchers at Northwestern and Stanford universities.
New species of stiletto snake capable of sideways strikes discovered in West Africa
During surveys in the Upper Guinea forest zone of Liberia and Guinea, scientists discovered snakes later identified as a new to science species.
Researchers discover new nitrogen source in Arctic
Scientists have revealed that the partnership between an alga and bacteria is making the essential element nitrogen newly available in the Arctic Ocean.
Criteria for the reduction of environmental impact applied in the Roman Theatre of Itálica
The authors of the study have developed tools that link Life-Cycle Analysis (LCA) and Building Information Modeling (BIM) software so that environmental-impact reduction criteria can be integrated into projects from the moment of their first design.
Researchers report new light-activated micro pump
Even the smallest mechanical pumps have limitations, from the complex microfabrication techniques required to make them to the fact that there are limits on how small they can be.
For infants, distinguishing between friends and strangers is a laughing matter
Infants as young as five months can differentiate laughter between friends and that between strangers, finds a new study.
Fatal horizon, driven by acidification, closes in on marine organisms in Southern Ocean
Marine microorganisms in the Southern Ocean may find themselves in a deadly vise grip by century's end as ocean acidification creates a shallower horizon for life.
How to take a census of Earth's biodiversity? One team of researchers has a plan
How do you monitor the number and location of Earth's plants and animals at any given time?
Cash programs that help the poor can harm natural resources
Poverty programs throughout the world that give poor families cash for food, education and health needs can have unintended consequences for communities that depend on natural resources, such as fish and trees.
Improved hybrid models for multi-step wind speed forecasting
To ensure the safety and stability of the power grid, reliable predictions of wind speed and power generation at the local scale for wind farms are essential.
New plastic surgery statistics reveal trends toward body enhancement
New data released by the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS) shows there were nearly a quarter million more cosmetic procedures performed in 2018 than the previous year.
How susceptible are hospital employees to phishing attacks?
A multicenter study finds high click rate for simulated phishing emails, potential benefit in phishing awareness training.
Binge drinking in adolescence may increase risk for anxiety later in life
Researchers at the University of Illinois at Chicago have found that adolescent binge drinking, even if discontinued, increases the risk for anxiety later in life due to abnormal epigenetic programming.
When green 'fixes' actually increase the carbon footprint
When tech companies move into a city, they often encourage a sustainability mindset.
New study highlights 'alarmingly high' rate of visual problems in stroke survivors
A new University of Liverpool study, published in PLOS ONE, highlights the high incidence and prevalence of visual problems in acute stroke survivors.
New wallaby-sized dinosaur from the ancient Australian-Antarctic rift valley
A new, wallaby-sized herbivorous dinosaur has been identified from five fossilized upper jaws in 125-million-year-old rocks from the Cretaceous period of Victoria, southeastern Australia.
New device could help minimize scarring in cosmetic surgery
Researchers at Binghamton University, State University of New York have developed a new device that could help minimize scarring during surgery.
For hyenas, there's no 'I' in clan
When it comes to advancing social status, it's not what you know, it's who you know -- for humans and spotted hyenas alike.
Controlling thermal conductivity of polymers with light
In a new study, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have designed and demonstrated a novel type of polymer demonstrating a switchable thermal conductivity controlled by light.
Computer kidney could provide safer tests for new medications
A University of Waterloo researcher has spearheaded the development of the first computational model of the human kidney.
Unveiling the role of selenocysteine, the mysterious 21st amino acid
Selenocysteine is an essential amino acid for certain species, such as humans and the other vertebrates, although it has disappeared from others, such as insects.
Quantum physicists succeed in controlling energy losses and shifts
In their paper to be published on March 11, 2019 in Nature Physics, scientists from Aalto University and the University of Oulu demonstrate that they can increase the dissipation rate, on demand, by a factor of thousand in a high-quality superconducting resonator--just like the ones used in prototype quantum computers.
Sex differences in personality traits in Asian elephants
Scientists from the University of Turku, Finland, have found that male and female Asian elephants differ in their personality.
Cutting the standard dose of medication for acute mountain sickness in half does not reduce its effectiveness
A new study published in Wilderness & Environmental Medicine demonstrated that trekkers and climbers taking a lower dose of acetazolamide (62.5 mg twice daily) were no more likely to develop acute mountain sickness (AMS) symptoms than those who took twice that amount, which is the standard prophylactic dose.
Anti-malarial shows promise in human clinical study
An experimental drug, called DSM265, cured seven volunteers of a Plasmodium falciparum infection, a malaria parasite that is a major cause of morbidity and mortality worldwide.
College campuses are thinking about lactation spaces -- but could be doing more
Breastfeeding mothers in higher-education environments can typically find a place to pump, but only recently have institutions begun to prioritize access to this resource.
Sepsis a leading cause of death in US hospitals but many deaths may not be preventable
A research team at Brigham and Women's Hospital has comprehensively reviewed the characteristics and clinical management of patients who died with sepsis.
Researchers uncover additional evidence for massive solar storms
Solar storms can be far more powerful than previously thought.
How to train your robot (to feed you dinner)
Researchers at the University of Washington have developed a robotic system that can feed people who need someone to help them eat.
How online neighborhood reviews could aid urban planning
Every day, people share a dizzying amount of information about local communities online.
Sinister blastocystis: a clandestine killer of good bacteria revealed
A study from NUS Medicine has revealed an insidious aspect of the gut protozoan Blastocystis, which is largely thought to be a harmless commensal organism.
UNH researchers identify role gender-biased protein may play in autism
Researchers at the University of New Hampshire are one step closer to helping answer the question of why autism is four times more common in boys than in girls after identifying and characterizing the connection of certain proteins in the brain to autism spectrum disorders (ASD).
Multi-country study: Many Airbnb listings that allow smoking lack smoke detectors
In a study that analyzed Airbnb listings across 17 countries, researchers from Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health found that less than half of the Airbnb venues that allow smoking are equipped with smoke detectors, while nearly two-thirds of Airbnb venues that do not allow smoking are equipped with smoke detectors.
Remembering to forget
Discarding information from the brain is associated with more mental effort than keeping it, finds a human neuroimaging study published in JNeurosci.
Finding the right 'dose' for solar geoengineering
New research finds that if solar geoengineering is used to cut global temperature increases in half, there could be worldwide benefits without exacerbating change in any large geographic area.
Persons with Alzheimer's disease have a higher risk of head injuries
Persons with Alzheimer's disease have approximately 30 percent higher risk of head injuries, and 50 percent higher risk of traumatic brain injuries than persons without Alzheimer's disease, a recent study from University of Eastern Finland shows.
New diagnostic clues found for life limiting lung condition
A new biomarker that could be used to provide earlier diagnosis for a life limiting lung condition has been identified by researchers at the University of Bradford.
Researchers find a piece of Palaeolithic art featuring birds and humans
An article published in the journal L'Anthropologie tells how UB researchers found -- in the site of Hort de la Bequera (Margalef de Montsant, Priorat) -- an artistic piece from 12,500 years ago in which humans and birds try to interact in a pictorial scene with exceptional traits: figures seem to star a narration on hunting and motherhood.
Sydney united to build a quantum harbor city
Working together, researchers at the University of Sydney and UNSW have overcome a fundamental hurdle to building quantum computers in silicon.
Nature's own biorefinery
New research from Berkeley Lab shows how an insect common to the Eastern U.S., the long-horned passalid beetle, has a hardy digestive tract with microbes to thank for turning its woody diet into energy, food for its young, and nutrients for forest growth.
Ancient records prompt rethink of animal evolution timeline
Scientists are rethinking a major milestone in animal evolution, after gaining fresh insights into how life on Earth diversified millions of years ago.
Fossil teeth from Kenya solve ancient monkey mystery
The teeth of a new fossil monkey, unearthed in the badlands of northwest Kenya, help fill a 6-million-year void in Old World monkey evolution, according to a study by US and Kenyan scientists published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
Physicists use supercomputers to solve 50-year-old beta decay puzzle
Beta decay plays an indispensable role in the universe. And for 50 years it has held onto a secret that puzzled nuclear physicists.
Few pathways to an acceptable climate future without immediate action, according to study
A new comprehensive study of climate change has painted over 5 million pictures of humanity's potential future, and few foretell an Earth that has not severely warmed.
Hospital cleaning trial cuts infections
Queensland University of Technology researchers have led a major trial of boosted hospital cleaning practices across 11 Australian hospitals that focused on 'touch points' in wards, and found significant reductions in healthcare-associated infections, with associated cost benefits.
Multitasking amygdala neurons respond to sights, sounds, and touch
Individual neurons in the monkey amygdala that respond to touch also respond to imagery and sounds, according to new research published in JNeurosci.
Pollinators need people
A global study has concluded that people are essential to conserving the pollinators that maintain and protect biodiversity, agriculture and habitat.
Southern Ocean acidification puts marine organisms at risk
New research co-authored by University of Alaska indicates that acidification of the Southern Ocean will cause a layer of water to form below the surface that corrodes the shells of some sea snails.
Is infant temperament associated with future risk of childhood obesity?
This observational study looked at whether the temperament of infants born to mothers with gestational diabetes was associated with future risk of childhood obesity at ages 2 to 5 years.
Mechanized cane measures patients' rehabilitation process without noticing it
The Embedded Systems Engineering Group of the University of Malaga, specializing in the design of physical devices to aid users, such as a smart wheelchair, has developed a mechanized cane that can measure patients' rehabilitation process without any impact on them.
Teenage T. rex was already chomping on prey, new UW Oshkosh research shows
New research from the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh indicates that even as a teenager the Tyrannosaurus rex showed signs that it would grow up to be a ferocious predator.
Are eyes the window to our mistakes?
When humans make certain types of mistakes, the size of their pupils change.
Moderate muscle strength may lower risk for type 2 diabetes
Of the 30 million Americans with diabetes, 90 to 95 percent have type 2, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
For infection-fighting cells, a guideline for expanding the troops
A new study from Princeton researchers uses mathematical modeling to explain how T cells, part of the body's key defenses against pathogens, expand to fight a new infection.
Ultrathin and ultrafast: Scientists pioneer new technique for two-dimensional material analysis
Using a never-before-seen technique, scientists have found a new way to use some of the world's most powerful X-rays to uncover how atoms move in a single atomic sheet in real time, opening up new possibilities for probing two-dimensional materials.
Honey bees can help monitor pollution in cities
Honey from urban bees can tell us how clean a city is and help pinpoint the sources of environmental pollutants such as lead, new University of British Columbia research has found.
Smoking during pregnancy doubles the risk of sudden unexpected infant death, study warns
The first findings to result from a collaboration between Seattle Children's Research Institute and Microsoft data scientists provides expecting mothers new information about how smoking before and during pregnancy contributes to the risk of an infant dying suddenly and unexpectedly before their first birthday.
New regulatory factor identified in bone formation
Researchers report the identification of a novel transcription factor that helps regulate the differentiation of mesenchymal stem cells into bone in mice.
Research connects dots among ocean dynamics, drought and forests
The study found predictable, traceable connections between changes in how the Atlantic Ocean flowed and operated with centuries-long droughts and changes in forest makeup.
Brain stimulation improves depression symptoms, restores brain waves in clinical study
With a weak alternating electrical current sent through electrodes attached to the scalp, UNC School of Medicine researchers successfully targeted a naturally occurring electrical pattern in a specific part of the brain and markedly improved depression symptoms in about 70 percent of participants in a clinical study.
NASA's Aqua Satellite finds Tropical Cyclone Idai in Mozambique Channel
Visible imagery from NASA's Aqua satellite revealed the center of Tropical Cyclone Idai in the Mozambique Channel.
Study: Messages of stewardship affect Christians' attitudes about climate change
Christians' attitudes toward the environment and climate change are shaped by whether they hold a view of humans as having stewardship of the Earth or dominion over the planet, and reading material from religious sources advocating a stewardship interpretation can increase their concern for environmental issues, a new study found.
An international study co-led by CNIO identifies a 'sensor' that activates cell migration
Forces generated by the cytoskeleton activate a protein responsible for cell migration.
Massive twin star discovered snuggling close to its stellar sibling
Astronomers have discovered a binary star system with the closest high-mass young stellar objects ever measured, providing a valuable 'laboratory' to test theories on high mass binary star formation.
No silver bullet for helping the Great Barrier Reef
Using a combination of advanced satellite imaging and over 20 years of coral monitoring across the Reef, a team of researchers from Dalhousie University, ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies at James Cook University (Coral CoE), the University of Adelaide and Lancaster University in the UK has found that chronic exposure to poor water quality is limiting the recovery rates of corals across wide swaths of the Great Barrier Reef.
Rainfall changes for key crops predicted even with reduced greenhouse gas emissions
Even if humans radically reduce greenhouse gas emissions soon, important crop-growing regions of the world can expect changes to rainfall patterns by 2040.
Of mice, men and... computers: Common foundations of biological and artificial vision
The new study provides new insights on the mechanisms used by neurons in rat visual cortex to encode the shape of visual objects confirming the importance that rodents can have in the study of vision.
Mystery solved -- biologists in Dresden explain the genetic origins of the saffron crocus
For almost 100 years, there has been controversy as to the possible parent species of the saffron crocus are.
Winning the arms race: Analysis reveals key gene for bacterial infection
Researchers at Osaka University applied molecular evolutionary analysis to quantify the severity of negative selection pressures on genes encoding the pneumococcal choline-binding proteins (CBPs).
Could an eye doctor diagnose Alzheimer's before you have symptoms?
A study of more than 200 people at the Duke Eye Center in the journal Ophthalmology Retina suggests the loss of blood vessels in the retina could signal Alzheimer's disease.
New data uncovers missing numbers to the only body clock that matters -- Your immune age
New data, published in Nature Medicine, from scientists at the Technion, Stanford and CytoReason describes for the first time ever a way to reliably quantify a person's 'immune age'.
Spontaneous spin polarization demonstrated in a two-dimensional material
Physicists from the University of Basel have demonstrated spin alignment of free electrons within a two-dimensional material.
Short birth intervals associated with higher offspring mortality in primates
Shorter intervals between primate births are associated with higher mortality rates in offspring, finds a new study of macaque monkeys.
Experts present a new framework for global species monitoring
A group of international experts has developed a much-needed framework to significantly improve the monitoring of status and trends of species worldwide.
ORNL-led collaboration solves a beta-decay puzzle with advanced nuclear models
An international collaboration including scientists at the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory solved a 50-year-old puzzle that explains why beta decays of atomic nuclei are slower than what is expected based on the beta decays of free neutrons.
OHIO study: Information literacy can combat 'fake news'
It's not difficult to verify whether a new piece of information is accurate; however, most people don't take that step before sharing it on social media, regardless of age, social class or gender, a new Ohio University study has found.
New study shows an eye scan can detect signs of Alzheimer's disease
Researchers from the Duke Eye Center have shown that a new, noninvasive imaging device can see signs of Alzheimer's disease in a matter of seconds.
Across diseases, women are diagnosed later than men
When considering all diseases, there are big differences between the course of men's and women's patient care within the Danish healthcare system.
Researchers say education a major barrier to following heart healthy diet
With cardiovascular disease as the leading cause of death in the United States, researchers said it is concerning that less than one-third of the study participants were familiar with heart healthy diets.
New 'tracers' improve diagnosis of cancer and may be useful for treatment
Researchers have identified two new nuclear medicine tracers that make it easier to diagnose and potentially treat multiple types of cancer, providing high-quality images with less patient preparation and shorter acquisition times.
How two or more trips to the bathroom at night cost the US economy $44.4 billion a year
A new study from non-profit research organisation RAND Europe examines how waking up at night due to nocturia, a urinary tract condition, can have a detrimental effect on a person's wellbeing and productivity at work, which in turn has an impact on a country's GDP.
Imaging technique finds differences between radiation-sensitive and resistant tumors
Researchers have begun pilot clinical trials using an imaging technique called Raman spectroscopy, which offers promise for guided cancer treatment and could spare some patients of the toxic side effects of ineffective radiation therapy.
Genes that evolve from scratch expand protein diversity
A new study published in Nature Ecology and Evolution led by scientists from the University of Chicago challenges one of the classic assumptions about how new proteins evolve.
Note taking jurors influence verdicts, study finds
New University of Liverpool research, published in PLOS One, highlights the positive impact jurors' note taking has on evidence recall and, crucially, trial verdicts.
When coyote parents get used to humans, their offspring become bolder, too
When coyote parents are habituated to humans, their offspring are more habituated, too -- potentially leading to negative interactions between coyotes and humans.
To slow malaria, cure mosquitoes with drug-treated bed nets
Researchers found that they could use the same drug -- atovaquone -- used to treat the malaria parasite when a person gets sick, coat mosquito bed nets with it, and let mosquitoes ingest the anti-malarial drug.
Forgetting uses more brain power than remembering
Choosing to forget something might take more mental effort than trying to remember it, researchers at The University of Texas at Austin discovered through neuroimaging.
Selfish genetic elements amplify inflammation and age-related diseases
Researchers from the University of Rochester show that LINE1 retrotransposons, a class of selfish genetic elements, become more active with age and may cause age-related diseases by triggering inflammation.
Mobile devices don't reduce shared family time, study finds
The first study of the impact of digital mobile devices on different aspects of family time in the UK has found that children are spending more time at home with their parents rather than less -- but not in shared activities such as watching TV and eating.
Sussex scientists one step closer to a clock that could replace GPS and Galileo
Scientists in the Emergent Photonics Lab (EPic Lab) at the University of Sussex have made a breakthrough to a crucial element of an atomic clock -- devices which could reduce our reliance on satellite mapping in the future -- using cutting-edge laser beam technology.
A robotic leg, born without prior knowledge, learns to walk
A team of researchers at the USC Viterbi School of Engineering believe they have become the first to create an AI-controlled robotic limb driven by animal-like tendons that can even be tripped up and then recover within the time of the next footfall, a task for which the robot was never explicitly programmed to do.
The fiddlers influencing mangrove ecosystems
The types of bacteria living in and around fiddler crab burrows vary widely between mangroves, but their functional activities are remarkably similar.
Inhibiting post-translational modifications may lower oxidative stress in the aging eye
Advanced age is the largest risk factor for age-related macular degeneration (AMD).
Hot or cold, rural residents more vulnerable to extreme temperatures
A study in China's Zheijiang Province shows that people in China's rural communities are more vulnerable to both hot and cold temperature extremes than people living in urban areas.
Faster robots demoralize co-workers
A Cornell University-led team has found that when robots are beating humans in contests for cash prizes, people consider themselves less competent and expend slightly less effort -- and they tend to dislike the robots.
Blood pressure control is beneficial, is it not?
Until recently, physicians had generally assumed that older adults benefit from keeping their blood pressure below 140/90 mmHg.
Protection from Zika virus may lie in a protein derived from mosquitoes
By targeting a protein found in the saliva of mosquitoes that transmit Zika virus, Yale investigators reduced Zika infection in mice.
Novel technology aims to improve lithium metal battery life, safety
Rechargeable lithium metal batteries with increased energy density, performance, and safety may be possible with a newly-developed, solid-electrolyte interphase (SEI), according to Penn State researchers.
US black and Hispanic minorities bear disproportionate burden from air pollution
Black and Hispanic Americans bear a disproportionate burden from air pollution caused mainly by non-Hispanic white Americans, according to a study to be published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
New study explores impacts of marine and freshwater predators on ecosystems and society
A new study from a team of leading scientists reports on the diverse ways that aquatic predators, such as sharks and alligators, can impact ecosystems and also benefit human society.
Fusion science and astronomy collaboration enables investigation of the origin of heavy elements
Atomic physicists working on nuclear fusion research succeeded in computing the world's highest accuracy atomic data of neodymium ions which is used in analysis of the light from a binary neutron star merger.
Discovery brings new understanding to sophistication of microbial warfare
In a new paper co-authored by Blake Wiedenheft, the researchers explain how viruses make a molecular decoy that is used to subvert the CRISPR-Cas bacterial immune system.

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