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Science Current Events and Science News | Brightsurf | June 06, 2019


Are American Zika strains more virulent than Pacific and Asian strains?
Over recent years, Zika virus (ZIKV) has spread eastward from Africa and Asia, leading to an epidemic in the Americas.
A home-based weight management program benefits both children and parents
Obese children are four times more likely to become obese adults making childhood obesity a significant health threat.
The universal beauty of the mountains can be seen in graphs
Mountains have character. The continuous gentle, wavy hills and wide valleys of the Carpathians, Appalachians or lower parts of the Alps contrast strongly with the soaring peaks, ragged ridges and deep ravines of the high Tatra mountains and Pyrenees, which are, in turn, different from the inaccessible, snow-covered Himalayan or Andean giants, along whose slopes flow long tongues of glaciers instead of water.
Opioid epidemic increases number of organs available for transplant
The confluence of two major health crises -- the opioid epidemic and organ shortage -- has moved surgeons to consider transplanting organs deemed as less than 'perfect' in an effort to expand the donor pool and save more lives, according to research published online today in The Annals of Thoracic Surgery, published by Elsevier.
Scientists recreate blood-brain barrier defect outside the body
Scientists can't make a living copy of your brain outside your body.
New global warming model highlights strong impact of social learning
A new climate modeling approach suggests that social processes strongly affect global warming predictions, and mitigation efforts should account for this influence.
Breaking down pathological protein aggregates
ETH researchers have discovered a new mechanism that brain cells use to protect themselves from protein aggregates.
Treating type 2 diabetes and heart failure
People with type 2 diabetes are at an increased risk for heart failure and many people have both diseases, which requires careful medical management.
Scientists propose a fresh look at the role of ferroptosis in the development of cancer
Despite significant advances in medicine, cancer remains the second leading cause of death worldwide.
Global study links better education, wealth to improved heart health
Findings from a sweeping global study conducted by SFU Health Sciences professor Scott Lear, among others, reveal a direct correlation between socioeconomic status and one's susceptibility to heart attacks and strokes.
What's fair game on the high seas?
Discriminating among sustainably targetable tuna species and protected species that co-mingle near fish-aggregating devices (FADs) in mid-ocean is one of the leading challenges that face tropical tuna fisheries.
Large placebo-controlled trial confirms safety of proton pump inhibitors (PPIs)
For patients taking proton pump inhibitors (PPIs) to treat gastroesophageal disease (GERD) or other acid-related conditions, new research puts safety concerns to rest.
Mathematics of plant leaves
Leaves can be enjoyed for their shade, autumn colors, or taste, and the arrangement of leaves on a plant is a practical way to identify a species.
The FASEB Journal: New psoriatric arthritis mouse model developed
Psoriatic arthritis (PsA) is a chronic inflammatory disease that can reduce mobility and agility in patients.
Radon inferior to radium for electric dipole moments (EDM) searches
An international research team led by the University of Liverpool has made a discovery that will help with the search for electric dipole moments (EDM) in atoms, and could contribute to new theories of particle physics such as supersymmetry.
Elasmobranches getting slammed
Researchers analyzed four years of catch data from Tanjung Luar -- a fishing village specifically targeting sharks -- to identify catch abundance and seasonality of vulnerable or endangered species, and found that catch per unit effort (CPUE) of sharks and rays from 2014 to 2017 fluctuated but was not significantly different.
Special issue: Organoids open frontiers in biomedicine, as design challenges are addressed
A Special Issue of Science featuring four Reviews illuminates ways in which organoid technology is opening up frontiers of research in biomedicine, allowing for the testing of cancer drugs on cells from individual patients, for example.
Creating new molecular sieves
Molecular sieves are useful in many industrial processes, especially in the chemical and energy sectors.
Counting the uncounted
Though abundance is a fundamental measure in ecology and environmental management, detecting all individuals in a population is usually impossible when monitoring, so estimates of abundance must account for imperfect detection.
Feeling heat on the roof of the world
The Tibetan Plateau, also known as the 'roof of the world,' is getting hotter.
For dying patients, early plans can improve quality of life
Careful documentation of a hospice patient's end-of-life wishes -- and prominently noting that information in health records early -- could prevent unwanted hospitalizations and medical interventions, a new study suggests.
I, you, or we: Pronouns provide hints to romantic attachment styles
New research shows that the pronouns individuals use when describing their romantic experiences provide clues about their attachment styles.
New computer attack mimics user's keystroke characteristics and evades detection, according to Ben-Gurion University cyber researchers
'Our proposed detection modules are trusted and secured, based on information that can be measured from side-channel resources, in addition to data transmission,' Farhi says.
Decoding Beethoven's music style using data science
What makes Beethoven sound like Beethoven? EPFL researchers have completed a first analysis of Beethoven's writing style, applying statistical techniques to unlock recurring patterns.
Proteasome inhibitors show promise for drug-resistant malaria
Proteasome inhibitors have significant promise as components of novel combination therapies to treat multidrug-resistant malaria, according to a study published June 6 in the open-access journal PLOS Pathogens by David Fidock, Caroline Ng, and Barbara Stokes of Columbia University Irving Medical Center, Matthew Bogyo of Stanford University School of Medicine, and colleagues.
Magnetism discovered in the Earth's mantle
The well-known sources of the magnetic field that surrounds the Earth are the deep inside core and the Earth's crust.
Researchers develop fast, efficient way to build amino acid chains
Researchers report that they have developed a faster, easier and cheaper method for making new amino acid chains -- the polypeptide building blocks that are used in drug development and industry -- than was previously available.
Dogs mirror owner's stress
The levels of stress in dogs and their owners follow each other, according to a new study from Linköping University, Sweden.
Neurons that fire alike are connected in the olfactory map
Filling a notable gap in scientists' understanding of how cells respond to 'smells' and signal to underlying neurons, researchers report that the activated cell receptors cause their cells not simply to fire, but to fire in specific patterns.
Northeastern deer more susceptible to wasting disease than those to the west
Some deer are more susceptible to chronic wasting disease that is spreading through herds of white-tailed deer across much of the United States, according to Penn State researchers, who have identified a panel of genetic markers that reliably predict which animals are most vulnerable to the contagious neurological disorder.
Dynamics of key viral attack strategy visible for first time
For the first time, Colorado State University scientists Tim Stasevich and Brian Munsky have developed detailed imaging technology and computational analyses to visualize, quantify and understand frameshifting mechanisms at the level of single molecules in living cells.
The mystery of the galaxy with no dark matter: Solved!
A group of researchers from the Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias (IAC) has clarified one of the mysteries of 2018 in the field of extragalactic astrophysics: the supposed existence of a galaxy without dark matter.
Ultrasound method restores dopaminergic pathway in brain at Parkinson's early stages
Researchers have developed a technique that could open up new ways to facilitate targeted drug delivery into the brain, enabling drugs to treat brain diseases more focally.
Fertilizer plants emit 100 times more methane than reported
Emissions of methane from the industrial sector have been vastly underestimated, researchers from Cornell University and Environmental Defense Fund have found.
Fussy, hungry, or even in pain? Scientists create an AI tool to tell babies' cries apart
Every parent knows the frustration of responding to a baby's cries, wondering if it is hungry, wet, tired, in need of a hug, or perhaps even in pain.
Could climate change make Siberia habitable for humans?
Large parts of Asian Russia could become habitable by the late 21st century due to climate change, new research has found.
Study shakes up sloth family tree
A pair of studies published June 6, 2019 have shaken up the sloth family tree, overturning a longstanding consensus on how the major groups of sloths are related.
How flow shapes bacterial biofilms
EPFL biophysicists have taken a systematic look into how bacterial biofilms are affected by fluid flow.
Research sheds new light on how brain stem cells are activated
This is a peer-reviewed observational study conducted in fruit flies.
Toxic metals found in reproductive organs of critically endangered eels
European eels consume their own skeletons as they swim 6,000 kilometers to their spawning grounds.
New research helping to reveal more about megaviruses
Swansea University has played a key role in transatlantic research to develop a greater understanding of megaviruses and their potential to cause life-threatening illnesses.
Bird personalities influenced by both age and experience, study shows
For birds, differences in personality are a function of both age and experience, according to new research by University of Alberta biologists.
New model predicts impact of invasive lionfish predators on coral reefs
A new model is providing insight into the impact of invasive lionfish on coral reefs in the Atlantic Ocean and Caribbean Sea.
Robotic surgery for throat cancer not superior to radiation therapy, study finds
In 2012, scientists at Lawson Health Research Institute launched the world's first clinical trial comparing robotic surgery to radiation therapy for the treatment of oropharyngeal cancer (cancer at the back of the throat).
Danger avoidance can be genetically encoded for four generations, say Princeton biologists
Princeton University researchers have discovered that learned behaviors can be inherited for multiple generations in C. elegans, transmitted from parent to progeny via eggs and sperm cells.
Berkeley Lab technology provides clarity amid Hawaiian water contamination concerns
For years, routine testing has shown that watersheds of the Mahaulepu Valley and Waikomo Stream in southeast Kauai frequently contain high counts of potentially pathogenic fecal indicator bacteria (FIB).
Radio ridge between two galaxy clusters bridges intergalactic space
Intergalactic magnetic fields connect two merging galaxy clusters, according to a new study, which reports the first discovery of a vast ridge of radio-emitting plasma in a filament of the cosmic web.
Researchers spot mutations that crop up in normal cells as we age
Cell division is not perfect. As we get older, mutations often appear in genes in normal cells.
Translation of genes more complex than expected
Researchers from the group of Marvin Tanenbaum have shown that translation of the genetic information stored in our DNA is much more complex than previously thought.
Leopard coral grouper: Overexploited
Researchers measured the population stock in Saleh Bay, Indonesia of the commercially valuable leopard coral grouper (Plectropomus leopardus), a species subject to population collapse due to high fishing pressure.
Toward a low-cost industrialization of lithium-ion capacitors
Combining two additives instead of one to facilitate the incorporation of lithium within capacitors: that is the solution proposed by researchers from l'Institut des matériaux Jean Rouxel (CNRS/Université de Nantes), in collaboration with Münster Electrochemical Energy Technology, in order to promote the low-cost, simple, and efficient development of the lithium-ion capacitors used to store electrical energy.
UBC researchers find ways to hackproof smart meters
Cybersecurity researcher Karthik Pattabiraman, an associate professor of electrical and computer engineering at the University of British Columbia, has developed an automated program aimed at foiling smart meter hacking and boosting security in the smart grid.
Emerging frontiers in phenological research
Phenology -- the study of events in an organism's life cycle such as plant leaf out and flowering -- has taken on additional importance in recent decades as a means to study the effects of global climate change on species.
New synthesis of complex organic molecules revealed
Japanese scientists from Tokyo University of Agriculture and Technology (TUAT), Gakushuin University, and Rikkyo University have -- for the first time -- developed an efficient way to make organic molecules that have so far been difficult to synthesize because of their overall bulky structure and general instability.
Study provides new insight into origin of Canadian Rockies
The Canadian Rocky Mountains were formed when the North American continent was dragged westward during the closure of an ocean basin off the west coast and collided with a microcontinent over 100 million years ago, according to a new study by University of Alberta scientists.
Social interactions impact climate change predictions, U of G study reveals
Using a new model that couples human behaviour to climate systems, researchers discovered including social processes can alter climate change predictions, a finding that may help reduce global warming.
Taking stock of Indonesia's reef fishes
A research team estimated the natural stock of reef fishes from three regencies in the lesser Sunda-Banda Seascape in Indonesia to fill gaps in knowledge of species composition and biodiversity.
Cancer research using mini-organs from tumors and healthy tissue
Hans Clevers and David Tuveson, experts in the field of stem cells and organoids, have written a review that summarizes the use of organoids in cancer research and shines a light on prospects for the future.
Understanding the (ultra-small) structure of silicon nanocrystals
New research provides insight into the structure of silicon nanocrystals, a substance that promises to provide efficient lithium ion batteries that power your phone to medical imaging on the nanoscale.
Jack of all trades or master of none? Impact of specialization on returns
A new study has found that specialist active management firms outperform those that have a more mixed offering of active and passive products, with the benefit of specialization being 0.7% a year on average.
Two new species of 'tweezer-beaked hopping rats' discovered in Philippines
A highly distinctive (weird-looking) group of rodents sometimes called 'tweezer-beaked hopping rats' love earthworms.
Heart rate variation due to stress affects auditory attention
Study shows that brain activity related to auditory perception parallels heart rate, offering new perspectives for the treatment of attention and communication disorders.
Shaking up the sloth family tree
New studies by two research teams challenge decades of accepted scientific opinion concerning the evolutionary relationships of tree sloths and their extinct kin.
New technique will help experts make heads or tails of male fertility
A new way of analyzing sperm that tracks the movement of the sperm tail could enable substantial improvements to male fertility testing.
Organic electronics: a new semiconductor in the carbon-nitride family
Teams from Humboldt-Universität and the Helmholtz-Zentrum Berlin have explored a new material in the carbon-nitride family.
Atrial fibrillation set to affect more than 14 million over-65s in the EU by 2060
Urgent action is needed to prevent, detect and treat atrial fibrillation to stop a substantial rise in disabling strokes.
New study identifies molecular aging 'midlife crisis'
The study provides a possible new reason why human disease burden increases so sharply from the sixth decade of life onward as health-protective mechanisms disappear.
Alzheimer's disease protein links plaques to cell death in mice
A new protein involved in Alzheimer's disease (AD) has been identified by researchers at the RIKEN Center for Brain Science (CBS).
How old are your organs? To scientists' surprise, organs are a mix of young and old cells
Scientists once thought that neurons, or possibly heart cells, were the oldest cells in the body.
Ultimate destiny
Study using mouse neural crest tissue reveals how primitive, undifferentiated cells choose their adult fate Analysis reveals roadmap of cellular decision making marked by multiple decision forks along the way Findings help explain how some neural crest cells become craniofacial cells, while others end up as nervous system cells.
Clemson researchers gain ground in the race to cure widespread parasitic infection
A faculty-led team of graduate and undergraduate researchers from Clemson University's Eukaryotic Pathogens Innovation Center has unveiled new findings that may help pave the way to an eventual cure for a parasitic infection that affects millions around the nation and world.
If you teach them, they will care
The next generation of nurses need the right tools to ensure that they are poised to deliver age-appropriate care and address the specialized needs of an older population.
Fishing a line coupled with clockwork for daily rhythm
Cells harbor molecular clocks that generate a circadian oscillation of about 24 h.
Neurons' 'antennae' are unexpectedly active in neural computation
Dendrites, the branching extensions of most brain cells, appear to play a surprisingly large role in neurons' computational ability, according to a new MIT study.
Normal tissues not so normal, but instead mosaics of mutated cells
Normal cell populations may not be as 'normal' as once thought; rather, tissues contain lineages of mutational mosaics developed over a lifetime, according to a comprehensive RNA sequence analysis of more than 6,700 samples across 29 different human tissues.
Sediment from fishing choking out sea sponges, study shows
Sediment stirred up from fishing activity has a negative effect on reef-building sea sponges in northern British Columbia, according to a new study by University of Alberta biologists.
Researchers uncover a new obstacle to effective accelerator beams
Release proposes explanation for failure to focus accelerator-fired ion beams.
Scientists edge closer to root causes of multiple sclerosis
An international team of researchers led by the University of British Columbia has made a scientific advance they hope will lead to the development of preventative treatments for multiple sclerosis (MS).
Just a phage? How bacteria's predators can shape the gut microbiome
A phage can have a profound impact on the dynamics of the gut microbiome, not only affecting certain species directly but also having a cascading effect on others.
Understanding Amazonia's mysterious ocelots
Researchers conducted a 12-year study from 2010 to 2017 on ocelots (Leopardus pardalis) in the Brazilian Amazon, deploying 899 camera traps at 12 stations to determine habitat preferences, which were largely unknown.
Rhythmic control of 'brain waves' can boost memory -- study
Controlling the frequency of 'brain waves' could help to improve people's recall of memories and potentially provide a key to unlock conditions such as Alzheimer's disease, according to a new article.
Talking to each other -- how forest conservation can succeed
Forest conservation can be a source of tension between competing priorities and interests from forestry, science, administration and nature conservation organizations.
Probing semiconductor crystals with a sphere of light
Tohoku University researchers have developed a technique using a hollow sphere to measure the electronic and optical properties of large semiconducting crystals.
The deep learning dive: how cells regulate division
Combining tissue imaging and pioneering artificial intelligence, researchers at the Hollings Cancer Center at the Medical University of South Carolina probed deeper into how cell division cycles are regulated, in this study released online in the May 2019 issue of Cell Reports.
A polar-bear-inspired material for heat insulation
For engineers, polar bear hair is a dream template for synthetic materials that might lock in heat just as well as the natural version.
Race could be a determinant in physician-patient interactions and pain treatment in cancer
A 62-year-old with stage IV lung cancer that has spread to his bones, causing unspeakable pain, is trying to convince his physician to prescribe pain medicine.
Researchers from IKBFU discover that pine nut shells increase physical endurance
For several decades, the number of chronicle diseases has been growing.
UCI scientists create new class of two-dimensional materials
Oxide perovskite crystals have many interesting physical and chemical properties, and materials science engineers would like to fabricate them as two-dimensional layers for use in advanced electronics and, potentially, quantum computers.
Discovery sheds light on synthesis, processing of high-performance solar cells
Halide perovskite solar cells hold promise as the next generation of solar cell technologies, but while researchers have developed techniques for improving their material characteristics, nobody understood why these techniques worked.
Study shows how the nervous system can transmit information across multiple generations
A new Tel Aviv University study reveals how the nervous system can transmit information across multiple generations.
Thwarting oil-pipeline corrosion by identifying a nanoscale villain
Certain molecules of iron, when juxtaposed, have been found by Sandia National Labs and Aramco Research Center researchers to cause microscopic holes in steel pipe used for oil transport.
LGBT-identifying females are at increased risk of substance use in early adolescence
Females who identify as sexual minorities face an increased risk of substance use that shows up as early as age 13, suggesting early adolescence is a critical period for prevention and intervention efforts.
New research unlocks properties for quantum information storage and computing
Researchers at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute have come up with a way to manipulate tungsten diselenide (WSe2) -- a promising two-dimensional material -- to further unlock its potential to enable faster, more efficient computing, and even quantum information processing and storage.
Are penguins righties or lefties?
Researchers in Punta Tombo, Argentina conducted a study to see whether Magellanic penguins (Spheniscus magellanicus) showed lateralization (handedness) in their behaviors or morphology.
Only 2% of black Chicagoan' allegations of police misconduct were sustained
Between 2011 and 2014, just 2% of allegations made by black Chicagoans resulted in a recommendation for sanction against an officer, compared to 20% for white complainants, and 7% for Latino complainants.
Three-drug combination helps curb the growth of deadly type of skin cancer
A UCLA-led research team has pinpointed a three-drug combination that could prove to be an effective new therapy for people with a specific type of advanced melanoma.
Could you fail a drug test by taking CBD? (video)
Cannabidiol, or CBD, is a non-psychoactive compound produced by the marijuana plant that seems to be everywhere these days.
Is sex primarily a strategy against transmissible cancer?
One of the greatest enigmas of evolutionary biology is that while sex is the dominant mode of reproduction among multicellular organisms, asexual reproduction appears much more efficient and less costly.
Where to draw the line between mental health and illness?
Schizophrenia is considered an illness by nearly all Finns, while grief and homosexuality are not.
Posture impacts how you perceive your food
Standing just for a few minutes while eating can mute taste buds, impacting taste evaluation, temperature perception and overall consumption volume.
USA lags behind EU, Brazil and China in banning harmful pesticides
Many pesticides that have been banned or are being phased out in the EU, Brazil and China, are still widely used in the USA, according to a study published in the open access journal Environmental Health.
Argentine fossils take oak and beech family history far into Southern Hemisphere
One of the world's most important plant families has a history extending much farther south than any live or fossil specimen previously recorded, as shown by chinquapin fruit and leaf fossils unearthed in Patagonia, Argentina, according to researchers.
Manipulating nanoscale light in nanocavity of scanning tunneling microscope junctions
Manipulating nanoscale light in scanning tunneling microscope junctions is attained by nanofabrication of gold tips using a focused ion beam technique.
Study confirms banded iron formations originated from oxidized iron
A new study by University of Alberta scientists shows that banded iron formations originated from oxidized iron, confirming the relevance and accuracy of existing models -- a finding of great importance to the geological community.
NIH HIV experts prioritize research to achieve sustained ART-free HIV remission
Achieving sustained remission of HIV without life-long antiretroviral therapy (ART) is a top HIV research priority, according to a new commentary in JAMA by experts at the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), part of the National Institutes of Health.
3D microchannels promote self-assembly of ordered emulsions at low droplet concentrations
SUTD researchers have discovered a way to achieve self-assembly of low density droplets in microfluidic flows using three dimensional (3D) microchannels.
New study finds microplastic throughout Monterey Bay
A new study shows that microplastic particles are not only common from the surface to the seafloor, but they're also being eaten by animals and incorporated into marine food webs.
Drug makes tumors more susceptible to chemo
Researchers at MIT and Duke University have discovered a potential drug compound that can block a mutagenic DNA repair pathway that helps cancer cells survive chemotherapy.
Nuclear architecture: What organizes the genome in the nucleus?
Spatial separation of active from inactive fractions of the genome in the cell nucleus is crucial for gene expression control.
Researchers uncover indoor pollution hazards
A team of WSU researchers has found surprisingly high levels of pollutants, including formaldehyde and possibly mercury, in carefully monitored homes, and that these pollutants vary through the day and increase as temperatures rise.
More mysterious jars of the dead unearthed in Laos
Archaeologists have discovered 15 new sites in Laos containing more than one hundred 1,000-year-old massive stone jars possibly used for the dead.
New research shakes up the sloth family tree
New research on the evolutionary relationships between tree sloths and their extinct giant relatives is challenging decades of widely accepted scientific research.
Pistons are muscling up
A team of roboticists at Harvard's Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering, the Harvard John A.
Do we judge chocolate by its wrapper?
Packaging is the first impression consumers have of food products that influences the likelihood of purchasing.
Intercultural communication crucial for engineering education
In an increasingly connected world it helps to engage with other cultures without prejudice or assumption.
Scientists get a grip on sloth family tree
A new study, by an international team of researchers led by academics at the University of York, challenges decades of scientific opinion concerning the evolutionary relationships of tree sloths and their extinct kin.
How artificial intelligence detects rare diseases
Every year, around half a million children worldwide are born with a rare hereditary disease.
Study reveals potential new disease threats for wild snow leopards
The first study to investigate disease threats to wild snow leopards has detected that exposure to infections may pose a threat to this highly vulnerable species, as well as local people and their livestock.
Parents of depressed teens in treatment may also benefit from counseling
Parents often seek mental health treatment for a child struggling with depression, but the treatment shouldn't stop with the depressed teen, suggests a new Northwestern Medicine study.

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

Anthropomorphic
Do animals grieve? Do they have language or consciousness? For a long time, scientists resisted the urge to look for human qualities in animals. This hour, TED speakers explore how that is changing. Guests include biological anthropologist Barbara King, dolphin researcher Denise Herzing, primatologist Frans de Waal, and ecologist Carl Safina.
Now Playing: Science for the People

#SB2 2019 Science Birthday Minisode: Mary Golda Ross
Our second annual Science Birthday is here, and this year we celebrate the wonderful Mary Golda Ross, born 9 August 1908. She died in 2008 at age 99, but left a lasting mark on the science of rocketry and space exploration as an early woman in engineering, and one of the first Native Americans in engineering. Join Rachelle and Bethany for this very special birthday minisode celebrating Mary and her achievements. Thanks to our Patreons who make this show possible! Read more about Mary G. Ross: Interview with Mary Ross on Lash Publications International, by Laurel Sheppard Meet Mary Golda...