Nav: Home

Science Current Events and Science News | Brightsurf | March 26, 2019


Pediatric health researchers offer insights for RSV vaccine
In healthy adults, RSV, or respiratory syncytial virus, feels like the common cold with a runny nose, chest congestion and cough.
Study shows that patients with or without cancer use different forms of marijuana
A new study shows that compared to other patients, cancer patients use different forms of medical marijuana for unique reasons.
BridgIT, a new tool for orphan and novel enzyme reactions
Chemical engineers at EPFL have developed an online tool that can accurately assign genes and proteins to unknown 'orphan' reactions, which are a major headache for biotechnology, drug development, and even medicine.
Syracuse University physicist discovers new class of pentaquarks
A professor of physics at Syracuse University's College of Arts and Sciences, has uncovered new information about a class of particles called pentaquarks.
Half a degree more warming may cause dramatic differences on drought-flood compound risks
The Paris Agreement set goals of keeping global temperature rise below 2.0°C and working to keep that rise to 1.5°C to mitigate impacts of climate change.
The solid Earth breathes
The solid Earth breathes as volcanoes ''exhale'' gases like carbon dioxide (CO2) -- which are essential in regulating global climate -- while carbon ultimately from CO2 returns into the deep Earth when oceanic tectonic plates are forced to descend into the mantle at subduction zones.
Will cyborgs be made from melanin? Pigment breakthrough enables biocompatible electronics
Italian researchers have recorded the highest-ever conductivity for eumelanin -- a dark brown melanin pigment that colors skin, hair and eyes.
Mind melding: Understanding the connected, social brain
Parents may often feel like they are not 'on the same wavelength' as their kids.
Deciphering the walnut genome
New research could provide a major boost to the state's growing $1.6 billion walnut industry by making it easier to breed walnut trees better equipped to combat the soil-borne pathogens that now plague many of California's 4,800 growers.
Health risks associated with mixtures of man-made chemicals are underestimate
The cocktail of man-made chemicals that we are exposed to daily is a health risk which current regulations and risk assessment overlook.
In hunt for life, astronomers identify most promising stars
NASA's new Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite (TESS) is designed to ferret out habitable exoplanets, but with hundreds of thousands of sunlike and smaller stars in its camera views, which of those stars could host planets like our own?
C. elegans roundworms 'harvest' an essential coenzyme from the bacteria they consume
A study conducted in C.elegans nematode roundworms may lead to improved treatment of a rare human genetic disorder that causes severe neurological symptoms leading to death in early childhood.
Facebook is free, but should it count toward GDP anyway?
A new study by MIT researchers puts a dollar value on all those free digital goods people use, and builds the case that online activity can and should become part of GDP some day.
Violence against long-term care staff 'normalized'
Violence against staff working in long-term care facilities -- including physical assault, verbal abuse and sexual harassment -- has become 'normalized', according to a new University of Stirling study.
Metal nanoclusters can be used as semiconductors: Key properties observed for first time
Tiny nanoclusters of metal atoms -- such as gold and silver -- have properties which mean they can be used as semiconductors, a joint Swansea-Hamburg research team has discovered.
Substituting HPS with light-emitting diodes for supplemental lighting in greenhouses
LEDs are capable of replacing HPS for supplemental lighting for cut gerbera production during darker periods.
First explanation for mechanism behind magnetism-driven NTE derived in 40 years
Most materials expand upon heating and contract upon cooling. Some behave inversely, a phenomenon known as negative thermal expansion (NTE).
Trained musicians perform better -- at paying attention
Musical training produces lasting improvements to a cognitive mechanism that helps individuals be more attentive and less likely to be distracted by irrelevant stimuli while performing demanding tasks.
Sound sense: Brain 'listens' for distinctive features in sounds
For humans to achieve accurate speech recognition and communicate with one another, the auditory system must recognize distinct categories of sounds - such as words - from a continuous incoming stream of sounds.
'Scuba-diving' lizard can stay underwater for 16 minutes
A Costa Rican lizard species may have evolved scuba-diving qualities allowing it to stay underwater for 16 minutes, according to faculty at Binghamton University, State University of New York.
Scientists ID new metabolic target to prevent, treat heart failure at earliest stage
Researchers with The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center have identified a metabolic process in the heart that, if treated, could someday prevent or slow the progression of heart failure.
Sometimes it's not good to be green
The greening or eutrophication of the world's lakes will increase the emission of methane into the atmosphere by 30 to 90 percent during the next 100 years, say authors of a March 26, 2019 paper in Nature Communications.
Speciation: Birds of a feather...
Carrion crows and hooded crows are almost indistinguishable genetically, and hybrid offspring are fertile.
Penn Nursing study links nurse work environments and outcomes
Nurses play critical roles in patient safety and are often the last line of defense against medical errors and unsafe practices.
Parental support linked to how well millennials transition to college life
Researchers show that how well parents or guardians support millennials' psychological needs prior to their transition to college is an important predictor of their psychological well-being as they adapt to college life.
Artificial womb technology breaks its 4 minute mile
A major advancement in pioneering technology based around the use of an artificial womb to save extremely premature babies is being hailed as a medical and biotechnological breakthrough.
Quick thinking? It's all down to timing
Synaptic plasticity, which underlies learning and memory, involves the strengthening and weakening of synapses.
Virtual reality enables real-time, internal view of patient anatomy during treatment
Immersive virtual reality (VR) may enable interventional radiologists to improve treatments using real-time 3D images from inside a patient's blood vessels.
Gesturing related to storytelling style, not nationality, study
New research by University of Alberta scientists suggests that the amount you gesture when telling a story has more to do with what you're saying than where you're from.
In the tree of life, youth has its advantages
New research in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences shows younger groups of organisms, on average, accumulate diversity much more quickly than older groups.
Probiotic bacteria evolve inside mice's GI tracts
Probiotics -- which are living bacteria taken to promote digestive health -- evolve once inside the body and have the potential to become less effective and sometimes even harmful, according to a new study from Washington University School of Medicine in St.
Air quality agencies can breathe easier about current emissions regulations
A University of Washington-led study provides a fuller picture of the relationship between nitrogen oxides -- the tailpipe-generated particles at the center of the Volkswagen scandal, also known as NOx, -- and PM2.5, the microscopic particles that can lodge in lungs.
Study: AIDS-immunocompromised populations see more antibiotic-resistant infections
Populations with a high prevalence of AIDS-immunocompromised people are more likely to see the emergence of antibiotic-resistant bacterial infections, according to a study coauthored by researchers at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, and published in PLOS One.
Widespread losses of pollinating insects in Britain
Many insect pollinator species are disappearing from areas of Great Britain, a new study has found.
Repeat heart attack and death linked to hospitals with low care scores
Heart attack patients treated at hospitals with low care scores are at greater risk for another heart attack and/or death due to cardiovascular causes, Rutgers researchers found.
The tremendous supply of apple cultivars in Wyoming
Study provides insight into possible heritage apple cultivars that could be grown in Wyoming and also in other states with similar harsh growing conditions.
Microorganisms are the main emitters of carbon in Amazonian waters
A study performed with microorganisms inhabiting floodplains, which comprises 20 percent of the whole Amazon, showed that the microbial food chain produces 10 times more CO2 than the classical food chain, mostly by decomposing organic matter.
Scientists uncover novel strategy to target common type of cancer
Researchers have identified a protein critical for the survival of a particular type of tumor cell, according to a study published today in eLife.
Using connectomics to understand epilepsy
Abnormalities in structural brain networks and how brain regions communicate may underlie a variety of disorders, including epilepsy, which is one focus of a two-part Special Issue on the Brain Connectome in Brain Connectivity, a peer-reviewed journal from Mary Ann Liebert, Inc., publishers.
Children develop PTSD when they 'overthink' their trauma
A new study shows that children are more likely to suffer PTSD if they think their reaction to a traumatic event is not 'normal'.
Infertility's roots in DNA packaging
Japanese researchers find one cause of infertility is the incomplete development of the proteins packaging DNA in sperm cells.
Land conservation helps local economies grow
Land conservation modestly increases employment rates, a traditional indicator of economic growth, according to an analysis of New England cities and towns, led by scientists at Amherst College, Harvard Forest, the Highstead Foundation, and Boston University.
Peking University makes progress in Materials Genome project by modifying the size of atoms
Pan' group takes a first step towards a novel 'effective atomic size' (EAS) model, which takes into consideration the impact of the types and number of neighboring atoms on the relationship between ionic radii and interatomic distances.
Bacteria could become a future source of electricity
In recent years, researchers have tried to capture the electrical current that bacteria generate through their own metabolism.
Advanced paternal age increases risk of early-onset schizophrenia in offspring
Advanced paternal age increases the risk in offspring of early-onset schizophrenia, a severe form of the disorder, according to a study in Biological Psychiatry, published by Elsevier.
New gene potentially involved in metastasis identified
Cancers that display a specific combination of sugars, called T-antigen, are more likely to spread through the body and kill a patient.
Untangling the brain's life-support network
Scientists have created the first global network model of the hypothalamus - a portion of the brain that controls basic survival functions in humans and many other animals.
Control of mosquito-borne diseases
Researchers from INRA, CIRAD, CEA, the University of Montpellier, and Chicago and Vanderbilt Universities in the United States have developed an innovative method for analysing the genome of the Wolbachia bacterium.
United against jammers: Researchers develop more secure method for data transmission
The motto 'united we stand, divided we fall' has found new application in cyber security.
Tumor-associated immune cells hinder frontline chemotherapy drug in pancreatic cancer
A frontline chemotherapy drug given to patients with pancreatic cancer is made less effective because similar compounds released by tumor-associated immune cells block the drug's action, research led by the University of Michigan Rogel Cancer Center found.
'Nightmarish' antlions' spiral digging techniques create effective and deadly traps
A team of biologists and physicists, led by the University of Bristol, have uncovered new insights into how antlions - one of the fiercest and most terrifying predators in the insect kingdom - build their deadly pit traps.
How the brain 'mentalizes' cooperation
Researchers identify a part of the brain that helps execute cooperative tasks.
University of Cincinnati provides road map to combat human trafficking in Ohio
More than 1,000 victims of human trafficking in Ohio have been identified thanks to a University of Cincinnati study published Tuesday, March 26, by the Ohio Department of Public Safety's Office of Criminal Justice Services (OCJS).
How to protect gymnasts from hazardous chemicals at gym facilities
In an intervention study, aimed at addressing high exposures among gymnasts to toxic flame retardant chemicals, researchers show that replacing the foam cubes in the landing pits with flame retardant-free alternatives can significantly reduce their exposures.
Researchers unlock the biomechanics of how the Ebola virus attaches to its host cell
Lehigh University engineers, working with microbiologists at the University of Iowa, have developed a simple model for virus-host cell interaction driven by Ebola's adhesion to cell surface receptors.
Venus flytrap 'teeth' form a 'horrid prison' for medium-sized prey
In 'Testing Darwin's Hypothesis about the Wonderful Venus Flytrap: Marginal Spikes Form a 'Horrid Prison' for Moderate-Sized Insect Prey,' Alexander L.
Building starch backbones for lab-grown meat using Lego pieces
A new technique to spin starch fibers using Lego pieces could have future applications for lab-grown 'clean' meat, according to a team of food scientists from Penn State and the University of Alabama.
Study finds people who feed birds impact conservation
Researchers analyzed how people who feed birds notice and respond to natural events at their feeders by collaborating with Project FeederWatch, a program managed by the Cornell Lab of Ornithology that engages more than 25,000 people to observe and collect data on their backyard birds.
New 3-D printing approach makes cell-scale lattice structures
A new way of making scaffolding for biological cultures could make it possible to grow cells that are highly uniform in shape and size, and potentially with certain functions.
'Aneurysm Number' may help surgeons make treatment decisions
Aneurysms form as abnormal bulges over an artery, and, if ruptured, can lead to serious health complications or even death.
HIV/tuberculosis co-infection: Tunneling towards better diagnosis
1.2 million people in the world are co-infected by the bacteria which causes tuberculosis and AIDS.
Technique uses well-known dye to watch amyloid plaques in the brain
New work repurposing one of the oldest known reagents for amyloid looks to help provide a clearer picture of how fibrils come together.
Droughts could hit aging power plants hard
Droughts will pose a much larger threat to U.S. power plants with once-through cooling systems than scientists previously suspected, a Duke University study shows.
Genetic tagging may help conserve the world's wildlife
Tracking animals using DNA signatures are ideally suited to answer the pressing questions required to conserve the world's wildlife, providing benefits over invasive methods such as ear tags and collars, according to a new study by University of Alberta biologists.
NUP160 genetic mutation linked to steroid-resistant nephrotic syndrome
Mutations in the NUP160 gene, which encodes one protein component of the nuclear pore complex nucleoporin 160 kD, are implicated in steroid-resistant nephrotic syndrome, an international team reports March 25, 2019, in JASN.
Scientists shine new light on how cells coordinate eye growth in fish
New insight on how cells work together to control growth in the eyes of fish has been published today in eLife.
Microgels let medical implants fight off bacteria
Joint replacement implants dipped in microgel flecks -- and then into a charged solution -- can release micro-doses of antibiotics when bacteria approach.
Duckweed: The low-down on a tiny plant
An international research team led by researchers from the University of Münster and the Max Planck Institute for Chemical Ecology (both Germany) have found why the giant duckweed has a low genetic diversity despite its large population size: low mutation rates contribute to low genetic diversity.
Future of elephants living in captivity hangs in the balance
Scientists at the University of Sheffield and University of Turku are looking at ways to boost captive populations of Asian elephants without relying on taking them from the wild.
Protein 'spat out' by cancer cells promotes tumor growth
Prostate cancer cells change the behavior of other cells around them, including normal cells, by 'spitting out' a protein from their nucleus, new research has found.
Compared to sustained inflations for extremely premature infants, standard treatment prevails
Preterm infants must establish regular breathing patterns at delivery. For extremely preterm infants requiring resuscitation at birth, a ventilation strategy involving two sustained inflations, compared with standard intermittent positive pressure ventilation, did not reduce the risk of bronchopulmonary dysplasia or death at 36 weeks postmenstrual age.
Annovera birth control vaginal ring effectively prevents unwanted pregnancy, research finds
A recently approved contraceptive vaginal ring -- the first that can be used for an entire year -- is a highly effective birth control method, according to clinical trial data that will be presented Tuesday at ENDO 2019, the Endocrine Society's annual meeting in New Orleans, La.
Study finds no causal link between smoking and dementia
A recent study published in the Journal for Alzheimer's Disease has demonstrated that smoking is not associated with a higher risk of dementia.
Artificial intelligence identifies key patterns from video footage of infant movements
A simple video recording of an infant lying in bed can be analyzed with artificial intelligence (AI) techniques to extract quantitative information useful for assessing the child's development as well as the efficacy of ongoing therapy.
Tracing the process of nitrous oxide formation in the ocean
26 March 2019/Kiel. Nitrogen is an essential element for both the life on land and in the oceans.
Smartphone test spots poisoned water risk to millions of lives
A smartphone device developed at the University of Edinburgh could help millions of people avoid drinking water contaminated by arsenic.
Face off -- Cyclists not human enough for drivers: study
A new Australian study has found that more than half of car drivers think cyclists are not completely human, with a link between the dehumanisation of bike riders and acts of deliberate aggression towards them on the road.
Rice cultivation: Balance of phosphorus and nitrogen determines growth and yield
Cluster of Excellence on Plant Sciences CEPLAS at the University of Cologne cooperates with partners from Beijing to develop new basic knowledge on nutrient signalling pathways in rice plants.
Cool Earth theory sheds more light on diamonds
A QUT geologist has published a new theory on the thermal evolution of Earth billions of years ago that explains why diamonds have formed as precious gemstones rather than just lumps of common graphite.
Satellite finds Tropical Cyclone Veronica's stripped center along Australia coast
Early on March 26, Tropical Cyclone Veronica continued to move along the coast of Western Australia and NASA-NOAA's Suomi NPP satellite provided a visible image of the storm that showed the storm was stripped of strong thunderstorm development around the center.
Immune-repelling protein prolongs function, survival of human stem-cell-derived beta cells
Encapsulating human stem-cell-derived beta cells in microcapsules made with an immune-cell-repelling protein restored glucose metabolism in diabetic mice and protected the cells from immune system attack, preventing the buildup of fibrotic tissue that has plagued previous trials of encapsulated beta cells.
NASA sees Tropical Cyclone Joaninha affecting Mauritius
Visible imagery from NASA's Terra satellite showed Tropical Cyclone Joaninha as it moved through the Southern Indian Ocean triggering warnings in the island nation of Mauritius.
The income gap, growing
After more than a century of shrinking, the gap between rich and poor communities has increased dramatically over the past four decades, and Robert Manduca believes a large measure of the change can be chalked up to rising income inequality.
Function decoded: Protein influences growth processes and hormonal signalling
The working group under Junior Professor Dr. Mathias Beller from the Institute of Mathematical Modelling of Biological Systems at Heinrich Heine University in Düsseldorf has analyzed the function of a lipid droplet-associated protein.
New tool maps a key food source for grizzly bears: huckleberries
Researchers have developed a new approach to map huckleberry distribution across Glacier National Park that uses publicly available satellite imagery.
Early valve replacement versus watchful waiting in patients with severe aortic stenosis
Patients with severe aortic stenosis who have no symptoms may benefit more from an aggressive strategy of early valve replacement than from a conservative watch-and-wait approach, according to new research published today online in The Annals of Thoracic Surgery.
New app can secure all your saved emails
Columbia Engineering researchers develop Easy Email Encryption, an app that encrypts all saved emails to prevent hacks and leaks, is easy to install and use, and works with popular email services such as Gmail, Yahoo, etc.
New structural phase transition may broaden the applicability of photo-responsive solids
Japanese scientists discovered a new type of structural phase transition of an organic crystal called the photo-triggered phase transition.
Student loan forgiveness programs driving physicians to primary care
A 2016 survey of graduating osteopathic medical students showed 33 percent intended to work in primary care.
Study focuses on link between child feeding and health among Marshallese immigrants
A recent study of child-feeding habits among Marshallese in Arkansas is a step toward lowering rates of obesity, diabetes and heart disease, which affect this population at higher rates than the US population in general.
Salmonella could be combated by enhancing body's natural process
Autophagy -- the process of recycling cellular material in the body, can help combat Salmonella and other pathogens according to researchers at the School of Life Sciences, University of Warwick who have studied how autophagy can get rid of bacteria, and prevent diseases developing.
When tempers flare, nurses' injuries could rise
A new study by researchers at Michigan State University and Portland State University has found that when there's an imbalance in support among nurses at work, tempers flare and risk of injuries can go up.
New 'pulsing' ultrasound technique improves drug delivery to brains of mice
Using rapid short-pulse sequences of ultrasound helps drugs reach the brains of mice, according to new research.
Mouse study examines the underpinnings of hallucinations
In a study publishing March 26 in the journal Cell Reports, researchers looked at how a hallucinogenic drug impacts the brains of mice at the level of individual neurons.
Sweden leads the world in saving extremely preterm babies
The survival rate among extremely preterm babies has greatly improved in Sweden, a country that offers top-class neonatal care, a study from Karolinska Institutet published in the esteemed journal JAMA reports.
Stranded dolphins have amyloid plaques in their brains
Dolphins stranded on the beaches of Florida and Massachusetts show in their brains amyloid plaques, a hallmark in human beings of Alzheimer's disease, together with an environmental toxin produced by cyanobacterial blooms.
Layered liquids arrange nanoparticles into useful configurations
Materials scientists at Duke University have theorized a new 'oil-and-vinegar' approach to engineering self-assembling materials of unusual architectures made out of spherical nanoparticles.
Ancient Caribbean children helped with grocery shopping in AD 400
Researchers have long thought that snail and clam shells found at Caribbean archaeological sites were evidence of 'starvation food' eaten in times when other resources were lacking.
The sense of water -- and nitrogen: Studies uncover genome-wide responses that limit crop growth
A team of researchers has tested how each gene within the genome of rice--one of the world's most important staple crops--senses and responds to combinations of water and nutrients.
Seeds inherit memories from their mother
Seeds remain in a dormant state as long as environmental conditions are not ideal for germination.
Yellowstone elk don't budge for wolves say scientists
Elk roam the winter range that straddles the northern boundary of Yellowstone National Park with little regard for wolves, according to a new study illustrating how elk can tolerate living in close proximity to the large predator.
Not all carrot germplasm is the same -- in terms of salinity tolerance
A study out of The USDA Agricultural Research Service at the University of Wisconsin has evaluated the response of diverse carrot germplasm to salinity stress, identified salt-tolerant carrot germplasm that may be used by breeders, and defined appropriate screening criteria for assessing salt tolerance in germinating carrot seed.
The regeneration of a cell depends on where it is positioned
Researchers at the Nara Institute of Science and Technology (NAIST) report a new single-cell RNA sequencing technology, single cell-digital gene expression, which can measure the transcriptome while preserving the positional information of the cell in the tissue.

Best Science Podcasts 2019

We have hand picked the best science podcasts for 2019. Sit back and enjoy new science podcasts updated daily from your favorite science news services and scientists.
Now Playing: TED Radio Hour

Climate Crisis
There's no greater threat to humanity than climate change. What can we do to stop the worst consequences? This hour, TED speakers explore how we can save our planet and whether we can do it in time. Guests include climate activist Greta Thunberg, chemical engineer Jennifer Wilcox, research scientist Sean Davis, food innovator Bruce Friedrich, and psychologist Per Espen Stoknes.
Now Playing: Science for the People

#527 Honey I CRISPR'd the Kids
This week we're coming to you from Awesome Con in Washington, D.C. There, host Bethany Brookshire led a panel of three amazing guests to talk about the promise and perils of CRISPR, and what happens now that CRISPR babies have (maybe?) been born. Featuring science writer Tina Saey, molecular biologist Anne Simon, and bioethicist Alan Regenberg. A Nobel Prize winner argues banning CRISPR babies won’t work Geneticists push for a 5-year global ban on gene-edited babies A CRISPR spin-off causes unintended typos in DNA News of the first gene-edited babies ignited a firestorm The researcher who created CRISPR twins defends...