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Science Current Events and Science News | Brightsurf | March 20, 2019


Robotic 'gray goo'
Researchers at Columbia Engineering and MIT Computer Science & Artificial Intelligence Lab (CSAIL), demonstrate for the first time a way to make a robot composed of many loosely coupled components, or 'particles.' Unlike swarm or modular robots, each component is simple, and has no individual address or identity.
Beware of sleeping queens underfoot this spring
Scientists at Queen Mary University of London have discovered a never before reported behaviour of queen bumblebees.
First ratings for youth football helmets address sport's largest pool of athletes
With the release of youth football-helmet ratings by the Virginia Tech Helmet Lab -- already renowned for their helmet ratings for varsity football and other sports -- consumers can see which helmets best reduce concussion risk.
New treatment of acute myeloid leukemia achieves remarkable results in a disease formerly with little hope
A new Australian drug trial has achieved a remarkable result, clearing the bone marrow of leukemia in almost 60 percent of patients.
The recent spread of coyotes across North America did not doom deer populations
Coyotes eat deer, but not enough to limit the deer population at a large scale.
Research examines complications during birth and link to later social anxiety in children
A new study published in Infant and Child Development indicates that complications during birth may increase the risk that children will develop social anxiety by their pre-teen years.
Canadian food and beverage companies get mixed grades on nutrition goals: U of T report
Canada's largest food and beverage manufacturers could aim higher to improve nutrition, reduce obesity and prevent chronic disease, according to a new report by University of Toronto researchers.
Tagged by scientists, bluefin tuna passing submerged listening lines help reveal species' survival
An array of underwater listening lines that detect passing giant Atlantic bluefin tuna previously caught and tagged by scientists has created a new system to monitor these enormous, fast, powerful and lucrative fish in the open ocean.
Is anxiety in childhood and adolescence linked to later alcohol use disorders?
In an Addiction analysis of relevant published studies, investigators found some evidence for a positive association between anxiety during childhood and adolescence with later alcohol use disorders.
Review of osteoporosis clinical practice guidelines finds majority lack patient values
Patients' voices are ignored all too often in osteoporosis clinical practice guidelines, say researchers, who reviewed 70 English-language guidelines around the world and found less than 40 percent included any mention of patients' beliefs, values or preferences (BVPs).
Baby step towards breath-testing for gut disorders
Small children may one day avoid invasive, painful and often traumatic esophageal tube-testing for gut damage and celiac disease with a new method of simply blowing into a glass tube to provide effective diagnoses.
New study shows effects on offspring of epigenetic inheritance via sperm
As an organism grows and responds to its environment, genes in its cells are constantly turning on and off, with different patterns of gene expression in different cells.
A new strategy of fabricating p-n junction in single crystalline Si nanowires, twisting
Can single crystalline materials be used for low dimensional p-n junction design?
Tracing the genetic origins of insecticide resistance in malaria-transmitting mosquitoes
Researchers have identified a single genetic alteration in a malaria-transmitting mosquito species that confers resistance to a widely used insecticide, according to a new study.
Stroke risk drops in both black and white older adults
Recent reductions in hospitalization and death due to stroke extend to both black and white Medicare beneficiaries, reports a study in the April issue of Medical Care.
Computer scientists create programmable self-assembling DNA
Computer scientists at UC Davis, Maynooth University in Ireland and the California Institute of Technology have created DNA molecules that can self-assemble into patterns essentially by running their own program.
Infections linked with an increased risk of developing Sjögren's syndrome
Individuals with a history of infection had a two-fold increased risk of developing Sjögren's syndrome in a Journal of Internal Medicine study.
Sniffing out Parkinson's disease
Parkinson's disease is a neurodegenerative disorder that leads to progressive brain cell death and extensive loss of motor function.
How our body 'listens' to vibrations
We all know the feeling of a mobile phone vibrating in our hands.
WVU researcher finds some Medicaid populations more likely to die by suicide
A West Virginia University researcher has discovered the suicide rate of some Medicaid-insured youth -- including girls and young women -- is higher than those with private insurance.
Study examines how high altitude affects memory
Oxygen is essential for maintaining normal human brain function, and living at high altitudes can lead to deficits in cognition such as attention and memory.
Evidence rogue waves are getting more extreme
Research led by the University of Southampton suggests that 'rogue' waves are occurring less often, but becoming more extreme.
Surrey creates innovative lab test to develop easy-to-swallow medicine for children
Scientists at the University of Surrey and University College London have revealed an innovative in vitro method that can help to develop easy to swallow medicine for children and older people.
Computer scientists create reprogrammable molecular computing system
Caltech researchers have designed self-assembling DNA molecules with unprecedented reprogrammability.
A mating war in diving beetles has stopped the evolution of species
In nature, males eager attempts to mate with females can be so extreme that they will harm females.
Laser-targeted removal of prostate tumors works as well complete removal of prostate
Researchers from The University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston, led by prostate cancer treatment pioneer Dr.
Brain-inspired AI inspires insights about the brain (and vice versa)
In a paper presented at the 2018 Conference on Neural Information Processing Systems (NeurIPS), researchers from The University of Texas at Austin described the results of experiments that used artificial neural networks to predict with greater accuracy than ever before how different areas in the brain respond to specific words.
Older immigrants living in US more satisfied with life than native-born counterparts
Most people who immigrated to the United States for a chance to live the 'American Dream' are more satisfied with their lives in the 'land of the free' than those who were born here, according to new research from Florida State University.
Active substance from plant slows down aggressive eye cancer
An active substance that has been known for 30 years could unexpectedly turn into a ray of hope against eye tumors.
Human microbiome metabolites tip the scale in intestinal E. coli infections
A multi-disciplinary team of biological engineers, microbiologists, and systems biologists at Harvard's Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering working on the Institute's DARPA-supported 'Technologies for Host Resilience' (THoR) Project, whose goal it is to uncover the causes of tolerance to infection exhibited by certain individuals or species, has now succeeded in modeling infection of human colon with EHEC in vitro using a microfluidic Organ-on-a-Chip (Organ Chip) culture device.
Study: Protein linked to cancer growth drives deadly lung disease
A protein associated with cancer growth appears to drive the deadly lung disease known as idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis, according to new research from Cedars-Sinai.
Giant X-ray 'chimneys' are exhaust vents for vast energies produced at Milky Way's center
At the center of our galaxy, where an enormous black hole blasts out energy as it chows down on interstellar detritus while neighboring stars burst to life and explode. astronomers have discovered two exhaust channels -- dubbed the 'galactic center chimneys' -- that appear to funnel matter and energy away from the cosmic fireworks.
Drinking hot tea linked with elevated risk of esophageal cancer
Previous studies have revealed a link between hot tea drinking and risk of esophageal cancer, but until now, no study has examined this association using prospectively and objectively measured tea drinking temperature.
Bacterial contamination in household and office building tap water
Water is a source of concern for disseminating the bacteria Legionella pneumophila and Mycobacterium avium, which cause lung disease (legionellosis and pulmonary nontuberculous mycobacterium disease, respectively).
Does alcohol consumption have an effect on arthritis?
Several previous studies have demonstrated that moderate alcohol consumption is linked with less severe disease and better quality of life in patients with rheumatoid arthritis, but a new Arthritis Care & Research study suggests that this might not be because drinking alcohol is beneficial.
Precision-targeted liposomes curb triple-negative breast cancer, metastases in mice
A novel precision medicine strategy described in Science Advances offers an intriguing ray of hope for triple-negative breast cancer.
Generic advice doesn't help patients drop pounds
When it comes to losing weight, doctors' messages to their patients can make a powerful difference, according to new research from Duke University.
Butterfly numbers down by two thirds
Meadows adjacent to high-intensity agricultural areas are home to less than half the number of butterfly species than areas in nature preserves.
Tropical storms likely to become more deadly as climate changes
Tropical storms are likely to become more deadly under climate change, leaving people in developing countries, where there may be a lack of resources or poor infrastructure, at increased risk, new research from Oregon State University shows.
Fish-inspired material changes color using nanocolumns
Inspired by the flashing colors of the neon tetra fish, researchers have developed a technique for changing the color of a material by manipulating the orientation of nanostructured columns in the material.
Some US Muslims identify less as Americans due to negative media coverage
Negative media portrayals of Muslim Americans can have adverse effects on how they view themselves as citizens and their trust in the US government.
To abort or not to abort -- making difficult choices alone
Some pregnant women are so conflicted about abortion that they don't even talk about it with their own mother.
How fluid viscosity affects earthquake intensity
A young researcher at EPFL has demonstrated that the viscosity of fluids present in faults has a direct effect on the intensity of earthquakes.
BMI, but not age at puberty, tied to risk of multiple sclerosis
Some studies have suggested that people who are younger when they enter puberty are more likely to later develop multiple sclerosis (MS).
UCLA researchers identify potential new combination treatment for pancreatic cancer
Researchers from UCLA's Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center have identified a possible new therapeutic strategy using two types of drug inhibitors at once to treat one of the world's deadliest cancers.
Early exposure to pesticides linked to small increased risk of autism spectrum disorder
Exposure to common agricultural pesticides before birth and in the first year of life is associated with a small to moderately increased risk of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) compared with infants of women without such exposure, finds a study published in The BMJ today.
Psychology may help explain why male and female serial killers differ
Male and female serial killers tend to choose their victims and commit their crimes in different ways, which may be due to thousands of years of psychological evolution, according to researchers.
US indoor climate most similar to northeast African outdoors
Americans are most comfortable when their indoor climate is like the northeast African outdoors -- warm and relatively dry.
Premature babies could benefit from combined glucocorticoid and antioxidant therapy
Scientists at the University of Cambridge have suggested that subtle changes to the drugs administered to mothers threatened with preterm birth or to premature babies could further improve clinical treatment and help increase their safety.
Ant larvae fight the offspring of parasitic queens
The eggs of a parasitic ant queen living off a foreign species may end up as food for the larvae of the host species.
NASA tracks Tropical Cyclone Trevor approaching Australia's Cape York Peninsula
Tropical Cyclone Trevor appeared to have a cloud-filled eye in visible imagery from NASA-NOAA's Suomi NPP satellite.
Breakthrough in fight against plant diseases
A global research team including scientists from La Trobe University have identified specific locations within plants' chromosomes capable of transferring immunity to their offspring.
Does pregnancy history affect cognitive function?
Healthy cognitive aging is a public health priority, especially as the US population grows older.
GRAPES-3 muon telescope discovers record 1.3 gigavolt potential in a thundercloud
By muon imaging the GRAPES-3 collaboration showed huge voltages develop in supercharged thunderstorms and reported a voltage of 1.3GV on Dec.
Coral reefs near equator less affected by ocean warming
Ocean warming is threatening coral reefs globally, with persistent thermal stress events degrading coral reefs worldwide, but a new study has found that corals at or near the equator are affected less than corals elsewhere.
Balance of two enzymes linked to pancreatic cancer survival
UC San Diego School of Medicine research sets the stage for clinicians to potentially one day use levels of a pancreatic cancer patient's PHLPP1 and PKC enzymes as a prognostic, and for researchers to develop new therapeutic drugs that inhibit PHLPP1 and boost PKC as a means to treat the disease.
Children grow in a different way, scientists demonstrate
An international group of scientists under the supervision of a staff member of Sechenov University (Russia) and Karolinska Institute (Sweden) found out that earlier views on the mechanisms that provide and regulate skeletal growth were wrong.
Princeton scientists discover chiral crystals exhibiting exotic quantum effects
Princeton physicist Zahid Hasan led an international team of physicists who have discovered a form of chiral crystals -- crystals with an asymmetry like biological ''handedness'' -- that host slow light-like massless electrons.
Gut instinct: Bile acid-triggered bacterial adaptation characterized
An international team led by Osaka University researchers has shown how the Salmonella protein RamR senses bile acids present in the gut, leading to the activation of a multidrug efflux system that helps bacterial cells to get rid of toxins.
Arctic sea ice 2019 wintertime extent is seventh lowest
Sea ice in the Arctic appears to have hit its annual maximum extent after growing through the fall and winter.
New mobile element found in mosquito parasite has potential for disease control
An interdisciplinary team of scientists has identified a new mobile DNA element in the Wolbachia parasite, which may contribute to improved control strategies for mosquito vectors of diseases such as Dengue and West Nile virus.
CRISPR/Cas libraries open new avenues in cancer research
CRISPR/Cas enables the targeted deactivation of genes by cutting DNA at pre-determined sites.
Visualizing better cancer treatment
Researchers have engineered nanoscale protein micelles capable of both delivering chemotherapeutic drugs and of being tracked by MRI.
Exercise program provides multiple benefits to nursing home residents
In a Journal of the American Geriatrics Society study of residents at nursing homes, those who participated in a six-month program of individualized and progressive multicomponent exercise at moderate intensity experienced fewer falls than those in a control group that participated in routine activities.
Children with autism are in 'in-tune' with mom's feelings like other children
New research addresses limitations of prior autism spectrum disorder (ASD) studies on facial emotion recognition by using five distinct facial emotions in unfamiliar and familiar (mom) faces to test the influence of familiarity in children with and without ASD.
Pollutants, pathogens could team up to make us sick
Many people view pollutants and pathogens as separate causes of illness.
Research paves way for new source for leukemia drug
Chemistry researchers have patented a method for making anti-leukemia compounds that until now have only been available via an Asian tree that produces them.
Neutrons paint atomic portrait of prototypical cell signaling enzyme
Direct observations of the structure and catalytic mechanism of a prototypical kinase enzyme -- protein kinase A or PKA -- will provide researchers and drug developers with significantly enhanced abilities to understand and treat fatal diseases and neurological disorders such as cancer, diabetes, and cystic fibrosis.
Study reveals that coyotes are not controlling deer populations in eastern US states
Coyotes expanded their range to colonize eastern North America over the last century, where their impacts on white-tailed deer populations are highly debated.
'Chronoprints' identify samples by how they change over space and time
Modern analytical tools like mass spectrometers can identify many unknown substances, allowing scientists to easily tell whether foods or medicines have been altered.
Researchers analyze biodiversity patterns in Antarctic Dry Valleys
'Surprisingly, we found that biotic, or living, interactions are crucial in shaping biodiversity patterns even in the extreme ecosystems of the Antarctic Dry Valleys.'
What oil leaves behind in 2.5 billion gallons of water every day in US
Purdue University researchers have developed a process to remove nearly all traces of oil in produced water.
New measurement method for radioactive methane
The method developed by Juho Karhu in his PhD thesis work is a first step towards creating a precise measuring device.
Cities rethink parking as ride-hailing grows and parking revenue declines
A new study published in The Journal of Transportation and Land Use found that people who use ride-hailing are willing to pay more to avoid driving, including the stress and cost of parking.
Local extinction of Southern California mountain lions possible within 50 years
Two isolated mountain lion populations in southern California's Santa Ana and Santa Monica Mountains are at risk of local extinction, perhaps as soon as within 50 years, according to a study published in the journal Ecological Applications.
It's spring already? Physics explains why time flies as we age
Duke University researchers have a new explanation for why those endless days of childhood seemed to last so much longer than they do now -- physics.
New study reshapes understanding of how the brain recovers from injury
Each year, approximately 265,000 Americans have a stroke that causes visual impairment.
Adhesive gel bonds to eye surface, could repair injuries without surgery
An adhesive gel packed with light-activated chemicals can seal cuts or ulcers on the cornea -- the clear surface of the eye -- and then encourage the regeneration of corneal tissue, according to a preclinical study published online today in Science Advances.
Wildlife tourism may negatively affect African elephants' behavior
Increasing numbers of tourists are interested in observing wildlife such as African elephants, and income generated from tourism potentially aids in the protection of animals and their habitats.
Better water testing, safer produce
Irrigation water's E. coli results can differ between labs, test types.
Honey bee colonies more successful by foraging on non-crop fields
Honey bee colonies foraging on land with a strong cover of clover species and alfalfa do more than three times as well than if they are put next to crop fields of sunflowers or canola, according to a study just published in Scientific Reports by an Agricultural Research Service scientist and his colleagues.
Researchers use radiomics to predict who will benefit from chemotherapy
Using data from computed tomography (CT) images, researchers may be able to predict which lung cancer patients will respond to chemotherapy, according to a new study.
New Cretaceous fossil sheds light on avian reproduction
A team of scientists led by Alida Bailleul and Jingmai O'Connor from the Institute of Vertebrate Paleontology and Paleoanthropology of the Chinese Academy of Sciences reported the first fossil bird ever found with an egg preserved inside its body.
Algae could prevent limb amputation
A new algae-based treatment could reduce the need for amputation in people with critical limb ischemia, according to new research funded by the British Heart Foundation, published today in the journal npj Regenerative Medicine.
Supercomputer simulations shed light on how liquid drops combine
High performance computing has revealed in detail how liquid droplets combine, in a development with applications such as improving 3D printing technologies or the forecasting of thunderstorms.
Assessment tool predicts chronic fatigue syndrome 6 months after mono
To assess risk factors for chronic fatigue syndrome after mononucleosis, researchers developed and validated a scale for rating the severity of mononucleosis.
Transformation of VA to 'whole health' model featured in JACM special issue
As medical delivery organizations seek to meet the Triple Aim, address social determinants of health, and move from volume to value, a leading-edge effort is the 'whole health' model in the US Veterans Administration (VA).
The best topological conductor yet: Spiraling crystal is the key to exotic discovery
A team of researchers working at Berkeley Lab has discovered the strongest topological conductor yet, in the form of thin crystal samples that have a spiral-staircase structure.
Changes in ocean 'conveyor belt' foretold abrupt climate changes by four centuries
In the Atlantic Ocean, a giant 'conveyor belt' carries warm waters from the tropics into the North Atlantic, where they cool and sink and then return southwards in the deep ocean.
New model for ICU care, developed by Rutgers, discovers causes of health emergencies
A new model for intensive care, developed by Rutgers and RWJBarnabas Health System, can help identify preventable -- and previously overlooked -- factors that often send chronically ill patients to the intensive care unit (ICU).
Skin diseases are more common than we think
Skin diseases are ranked as the fourth most common cause of human illness, but many affected people do not consult a physician.
Older patients with Crohn's disease benefit from new medications
Combining medications that suppress the immune system has been successful in treating young patients with Crohn's disease, but some physicians have been reluctant to use this strategy in older patients because of concerns about safety.
Disease burden in osteoarthritis is similar to rheumatoid arthritis
Osteoarthritis (OA) has traditionally been viewed as a highly prevalent but milder condition when compared with rheumatoid arthritis (RA), and some may believe that it is part of a normal aging process requiring acceptance, not treatment.
Sustainable fisheries and conservation policy
There are roughly five times as many recreational fishers as commercial fishers throughout the world.
UIC researchers find hidden proteins in bacteria
Scientists at the University of Illinois at Chicago have developed a way to identify the beginning of every gene -- known as a translation start site or a start codon -- in bacterial cell DNA with a single experiment and, through this method, they have shown that an individual gene is capable of coding for more than one protein.
Miscarriage from a man's perspective
'In describing the miscarriage itself, the men are speaking to a societal expectation that pregnancy is easy and smooth,' Horstman said.
Depression in 20s linked to memory loss in 50s, find Sussex psychologists
Depression in twenties linked to memory loss in fifties, find Sussex psychologists.
Pushing MYC inhibition closer to the clinic
VHIO-born spin-off Peptomyc S.L. has developed and preclinically validated mini-protein MYC inhibitor as effective and tolerable against notoriously difficult-to-treat lung cancer subtype.
Want in on nanotechnology? Capitalize on collaborative environments
Patent law experts demonstrate that private-public partnerships lead to promising innovation output measured in patents.
Turn off a light, save a life, says new UW-Madison study
We all know that turning off lights and buying energy-efficient appliances affects our financial bottom line.
Improper removal of personal protective equipment contaminates health care workers
More than one-third of healthcare workers were contaminated with multi-drug resistant organisms (MDRO) after caring for patients colonized or infected with the bacteria, according to a study published today in Infection Control and Hospital Epidemiology, the journal of the Society for Healthcare Epidemiology of America.
Asian-American groups vary in life years lost to premature heart disease, stroke
Risks of death from heart disease and stroke vary among American-Asian subgroups, with Asian Indian, Filipino and Vietnamese populations at greatest risk for losing years of life to heart disease or stroke.
Researchers shed new light on the origins of modern humans
The work, published in Scientific Reports, confirms a dispersal of Homo sapiens from southern to eastern Africa immediately preceded the out-of-Africa migration
Preventing elderly falls through low-cost community events
Reducing traumatic injuries sustained by older adults who fall begins with reducing their risk of falls.
Seeing through food and drug fakes and frauds
A simple new technique developed by engineers from the University of California, Riverside that can detect fake drugs from a video taken as the sample undergoes a disturbance.
Toilet seat that detects congestive heart failure getting ready to begin commercialization
A toilet-seat based cardiovascular monitoring system created by a team of Rochester Institute of Technology researchers aims to lower the hospital readmission rates of patients with congestive heart failure.
NASA's Aqua Satellite sees Tropical Cyclone Veronica develop off western Australia's coast
NASA's Aqua satellite provided a view of Tropical Cyclone Veronica after it developed off the northern coast of Western Australia.
Volcano cliffs can affect monitoring data, study finds
New research led by the University of East Anglia reveals that sharp variations of the surface of volcanoes can affect data collected by monitoring equipment.
Early discharge after lung surgery benefits patients without raising readmission risk
The finding indicates that early discharge is a safe practice for institutions with well-established enhanced recovery pathways.
The INBIS channel: the most complete submarine cartography
A scientific study describes for the first time the submarine cartography of a high-latitude system in the IBIS channel, which covers tens of kilometres in the northern western area of the Barents Sea, in the Arctic Ocean.
Levels of autism in China similar to the West, joint Chinese-UK study shows
The first large-scale study of autism in China has revealed that around one in a hundred people in the country has an autism spectrum condition -- the same figure as found in the West.
Improved control of big power in little motors
Little motors power everything from small comforts, such as desk fans, to larger safety systems, like oven exhaust systems - but they could be more precise, according to a research team from Mitsubishi Electric Research Laboratories.
'Particle robot' works as a cluster of simple units
Taking a cue from biological cells, researchers from MIT, Columbia University, and elsewhere have developed computationally simple robots that connect in large groups to move around, transport objects, and complete other tasks.
Protein BRCA1 as a stress coach
Two proteins work hand in hand to ensure that the tumor cells of neuroblastoma can grow at full speed.
As if by magic: TGen develops program that lights up cancer-causing mutations
By conjuring the spell 'Lumos!' wizards in the mythical world of Harry Potter could light up the tip of their magic wands and illuminate their surroundings.
'Terminator'-like liquid metal moves and stretches in 3D space (video)
In the blockbuster 'Terminator' movie franchise, an evil robot morphs into different human forms and objects and oozes through narrow openings, thanks to its 'liquid-metal' composition.
UCI engineers aim to pioneer tissue-engineering approach to TMJ disorders
Here's something to chew on: One in four people are impacted by defects of the temporomandibular - or jaw - joint.
Magnetic stir bars carry 'memory' from previous flasks and tubes
Magnetic stir bars are regarded as reusable consumables, and in many labs they last for months.
Antibodies from earlier exposures affect response to new flu strains
Research from UT Austin highlights role of immunological imprinting -- or how the immune system fights the flu after previous exposure to the virus via infections or vaccinations -- in the elicitation of new antibodies.
Chromatin changes rapidly in response to low oxygen, study finds
A study by the University of Liverpool reveals new insights into how cells respond to oxygen deprivation.
In humans, an anesthetic rightly timed can weaken the strength of a traumatic memory
As part of continued efforts to develop treatments for anxiety and stress-related disorders, researchers have shown that reactivating a negative memory in a human patient and then administering an anesthetic to that person made it harder for them to retrieve the memory 24 hours later.
Moms of kids with eczema report sleep troubles
Eczema (atopic dermatitis) is a common childhood condition and this study reports sleep disturbances were common among mothers of children with eczema.
Researchers identify gene variant associated with cellular aging
It is well known that psychiatric stress is associated with accelerated aging.
Researchers find broad impacts from lake trout invasion in Yellowstone
The scientists analyzed data spanning more than four decades and concluded that the impact of lake trout in Yellowstone Lake -- in particular, the decline of native cutthroat trout -- has cascaded across the lake, its tributaries and the surrounding ecosystem.
Complex societies gave birth to big gods, not the other way around
Big data analyses by an international research team, including a member of the Complexity Science Hub Vienna, suggest that moralizing gods are rather the product than the drivers of social complexity.

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