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Science News | Science Current Events | Brightsurf | August 27, 2019


Defective sheath
Schwann cells form a protective sheath around nerve fibres and ensure that nerve impulses are transmitted rapidly.
NUS researchers discover unusual 'quasiparticle' in common 2D material
Researchers from the National University of Singapore have discovered a new quasiparticle named 'polaronic trion' which can enable significant tunability in the optoelectronic properties of prominent 2D material, molybdenum disulphide.
Glacier-fed rivers may consume atmospheric carbon dioxide
Glacier-fed rivers in northern Canada may be consuming significant amounts of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, according to new research by University of Alberta biologists.
HKBU biologists discover and name new fireworm species in Hong Kong waters
A group of biologists from Hong Kong Baptist University (HKBU) have discovered a new fireworm species in Hong Kong waters and named it Chloeia bimaculata.
Would a carbon tax help to innovate more-efficient energy use?
Taxing carbon emissions would drive innovation and lead to improved energy efficiency, according to a new paper published in Joule from Carnegie's Rong Wang (now at Fudan University), Harry Saunders, and Ken Caldeira, along with Juan Moreno-Cruz of the University of Waterloo.
Researchers discover a new form of immunotherapy
A new form of immunotherapy that has so far been tested on mice makes it probable, that oncologists in the future may be able to treat some of the patients who are not responding to existing types of immunotherapy.
Turbocharging the body's natural killer cells to defeat cancer
Natural Killer (NK) cells have long been the soldiers of the immune system that prevents the growth and spread of cancers, and subduing this army of cells is one of the key ways that tumours take hold.
Seeing it both ways: Visual perspective in memory
Think of a memory from your childhood. Are you seeing the memory through your own eyes, or can you see yourself, while viewing that child as if you were an observer?
Arctic permafrost melting will aggravate the greenhouse effect
Scientists from Russia and the United States studied the composition of the deep layers of permafrost in Eastern Siberia to better understand the hazards of permafrost thawing to our planet and its inhabitants.
Prehistoric puma poo reveals oldest parasite DNA ever recorded
The oldest parasite DNA ever recorded has been found in the ancient, desiccated feces of a puma.
Pregnant women of color experience disempowerment by health care providers
A new study finds that women of color perceive their interactions with doctors, nurses and midwives as being misleading, with information being 'packaged' in such a way as to disempower them by limiting maternity healthcare choices for themselves and their children.
NASA-NOAA satellite tracks tropical depression Podul across Philippines
Tropical Depression 13W, now named Podul, was crossing the Philippines from east to west as NASA-NOAA's Suomi NPP satellite provided a visible image of the storm.
Biological risk potential of nanoparticles studied
Carbon nanoparticles are a promising tool for biomedical applications, for example for targeted transportation of biologically active compounds into cells.
'MasSpec Pen' for accurate cancer detection during surgery
A major challenge for cancer surgeons is to determine where a tumor starts and where it ends.
Cancer cells' immune weak spot revealed
Scientists have found a vulnerability in cancer cells that could make them more susceptible to being destroyed by the immune system, according to a new report in eLife.
Greater left ventricular mass increases risk of heart failure
Elevated left ventricular mass, known as left-ventricular hypertrophy, is a stronger predictor of coronary artery disease-related death and heart failure than coronary artery calcium score, according to a new study.
Fat pumps generate electrical power
A previously unknown electrical current develops in the body's cells when the vital fat pump function of the flippases transfers ('flips') lipids from the outer to the inner layer of the body's cell membranes.
Skin creams aren't what we thought they were
Anyone who has gone through the stress and discomfort of raw, irritated skin knows the relief that comes with slathering on a creamy lotion.
Mediating the trade-off -- How plants decide between growth or defense
During their daily quest for survival, plants need to strike a careful balance between growth and defence.
Using Wi-Fi like sonar to measure speed and distance of indoor movement
Researchers have developed a technique for measuring speed and distance in indoor environments, which could be used to improve navigation technologies for robots, drones -- or pedestrians trying to find their way around an airport.
Newly discovered giant planet slingshots around its star
Astronomers have discovered a planet three times the mass of Jupiter that travels on a long, egg-shaped path around its star.
Novel therapy studied for inherited breast cancer
Adding back a tiny molecule, microRNA 223-3p, to BRCA1-mutant cancer cells forces the cancer to die, researchers at UT Health San Antonio discovered.
Neurological brain markers might detect risk for psychotic disorders
People who may hear and see things that are not there could have symptoms of psychosis, better known as psychotic disorders.
Gene mutations coordinate to drive malignancy in lung cancer
Scientists have shown exactly how mutations in two different genes coordinate to drive the development of malignant lung tumors, according to a new report in the open-access journal eLife.
Machine learning increases resolution of eye imaging technology
Biomedical engineers at Duke University have devised a method for increasing the resolution of optical coherence tomography (OCT) down to the single micrometer in all directions, even in a living patient.
Researchers develop a better way to harness the power of solar panels
Researchers at the University of Waterloo have developed a way to better harness the volume of energy collected by solar panels.
Peptide hydrogels could help heal traumatic brain injuries
Traumatic brain injury (TBI) -- defined as a bump, blow or jolt to the head that disrupts normal brain function -- sent 2.5 million people in the U.S. to the emergency room in 2014.
How texture deceives the moving finger
The perceived speed of a surface moving across the skin depends on texture, with some textures fooling us into thinking that an object is moving faster than it is, according to a study published Aug.
Excess body fat increases the risk of depression
Carrying ten kilograms of excess body fat increases the risk of depression by seventeen per cent.
Not in Gotham anymore
In her comic-book paper, neuroscientist and artist Ann Fink argues that healing trauma entails obligations to society.
Study finds cellular processes controlling the formation of lymphatic valves
A mouse model study led by the University of South Florida Health (USF Health) Morsani College of Medicine has identified new cellular processes controlling development of the small valves inside lymphatic vessels, which prevent lymph fluid from flowing the wrong way back into tissues.
Laser printing tech produces waterproof e-textiles in minutes
In just three minutes, the laser printing approach can produce a 10x10 cm smart textile patch that's waterproof, stretchable and easily integrated with solar or other sources of power.
New biosensor provides insight into the stress behaviour of plants
Researchers have developed a method with which they can further investigate an important messenger substance in plants -- phosphatidic acid.
Streaks in aurora found to map features in earth's radiation environment
A special kind of streaked aurora has been found to track disturbances in near-Earth space from the ground.
Review: Biofeedback could help treat a number of conditions
A literature review by Veterans Affairs researchers highlights the usefulness of biofeedback for headache and incontinence treatment, and stroke recovery.
NASA finds Tropical Depression battling wind shear off the Carolina coast
Newly formed Tropical Depression 6 in the Atlantic Ocean may have just formed, but it did so under adverse atmospheric conditions.
How to practice safer sunscreening
Scientists are using nanoparticle screening on personal care products and finding previously thought toxic chemicals may not be harmful.
High fat diet during pregnancy slows learning in offspring, rat study suggests
In a bid to further explore how a mother-to-be's diet might affect her offspring's brain health, Johns Hopkins Medicine researchers have found that pregnant and nursing rats fed high fat diets have offspring that grow up to be slower than expected learners and that have persistently abnormal levels of the components needed for healthy brain development and metabolism.
Possible treatment on the horizon for severe dengue disease
New study reveals enzyme plays key role in potentially fatal dengue haemorrhagic fever and shock; suggests clinically approved tryptase inhibitor could be key in future targeted treatment.
Gene linked to autism undergoes changes in men's sperm after pot use
A specific gene associated with autism appears to undergo changes in the sperm of men who use marijuana, according to new research from Duke Health.
The genealogy of important broiler ancestor revealed
A new study examines the historical and genetic origins of the White Plymouth Rock chicken, an important contributor to today's meat chickens (broilers).
'Surrey swarm' earthquakes not caused by nearby oil extraction, says study
Imperial College London research has found no evidence that oil extraction caused recent earthquakes known as the 'Surrey swarm' in Surrey and Sussex.
Kids from disadvantaged neighborhoods more likely to be obese as adults
Children who grow up in disadvantaged neighborhoods are nearly one-third more likely to experience obesity as adults, according to new research from Cornell University.
The dark side of extrasolar planets share surprisingly similar temperatures
A new study by McGill University astronomers has found that the temperature on the nightsides of different hot Jupiters -- planets that are similar size in to Jupiter, but orbit other stars -- is surprisingly uniform, suggesting the dark sides of these massive gaseous planets have clouds made of minerals and rocks.
Artificial intelligence could use EKG data to measure patient's overall health status
Researchers applying artificial intelligence to electrocardiogram data estimated the age group of a patient and predicted their gender.
Red wine benefits linked to better gut health, study finds
A study from King's College London has found that people who drank red wine had an increased gut microbiota diversity (a sign of gut health) compared to non-red wine drinkers as well as an association with lower levels of obesity and 'bad' cholesterol.
Researchers take aim at circadian clock in deadly brain cancer
Scientists at USC and UC San Diego have discovered a potential novel target for treating glioblastoma, the deadly brain cancer that took the life of Sen.
Adolescents' fun seeking predicts both risk taking and prosocial behavior
Research shows that risk-taking behaviors, such as binge drinking, may increase throughout adolescence.
Early improvements in preschoolers' skills help explain long-term benefits of intervention
Current research findings are mixed as to whether preschool programs can improve individuals' outcomes in the long term, with some studies pointing to benefits years later and others showing a fadeout of cognitive gains as early as elementary school.
Astronomers find a golden glow from a distant stellar collision
A University of Maryland-led team of astronomers re-examined data from a gamma-ray burst spotted in August 2016 and found new evidence for a kilonova -- a turbocharged explosion that instantly forged several hundred planets' worth of gold and platinum.
NASA analyzes Tropical Storm Dorian day and night
Tropical Storm Dorian was approaching the Leeward Islands when NASA-NOAA's Suomi NPP satellite passed overhead from space and snapped a visible image of the storm.
Better seizure control with ketogenic diet in infants with genetic epilepsy
Research shows that starting infants as young as 3 weeks old on the ketogenic diet is effective in treating epilepsy.
Gold nanoparticles shown to be safe and effective treatment for prostate cancer
Bio-compatible gold nanoparticles designed to convert near-infrared light to heat have been shown to safely and effectively ablate low- to intermediate-grade tumors within the prostate, according to a study conducted at the Icahn School of Medicine and published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
Using a smartphone to detect norovirus
University of Arizona researchers have developed a simple, portable and inexpensive way to detect minute amounts of norovirus.
New in the Hastings Center Report, July-August 2019
Bystander ethics and good samaritanism, the 'grueling carousel' of caring for a homeless patient during her 30th admission, quandaries of egg freezing, and more in the latest issue.
Crows consciously control their calls
Crows can voluntarily control the release and onset of their calls, suggesting that songbird vocalizations are under cognitive control, according to a study published Aug.
Changing partners doesn't change relationship dynamics, study shows
New romances eventually follow patterns similar to old ones, according to U of A relationship researcher who led eight-year study.
Corruption among India's factory inspectors makes labour regulation costly
New research shows that 'extortionary' corruption on the part of factory inspectors in India is helping to drive up the cost of the country's labour regulations to business.
Smartphone-based device for detecting norovirus, the 'cruise ship' microbe
Made infamous by outbreaks on cruise ships, norovirus can really ruin a vacation, causing vomiting, diarrhea and stomach pain.
Cardiology compensation continues to rise; first heart failure compensation data reported
MedAxiom, an American College of Cardiology Company, the nation's leading cardiovascular health care performance community and top cardiovascular-specific consulting firm, has released its seventh annual Cardiovascular Provider Compensation and Production Survey.
Land-use program fosters white-tailed deer populations in USA
A land-use program piloted in the United States is having a long-term positive impact on populations of white-tailed deer, according to new research by University of Alberta biologists.
Total heart disease deaths on the rise
Total deaths from heart disease, stroke, diabetes and hypertension -- known collectively as cardiometabolic disease -- have been increasing since 2011, a new Northwestern Medicine study shows.
Nanoparticles could someday give humans built-in night vision
Movies featuring heroes with superpowers are all the rage. But while these popular characters are mere flights of fancy, scientists have used nanoparticles to confer a real superpower on ordinary mice: the ability to see near-infrared light.
Chipping away at how ice forms could keep windshields, power lines ice-free
How does ice form? Surprisingly, science hasn't fully answered that question.
These albino lizards are the world's first gene-edited reptiles
Meet the world's first gene-edited reptiles: albino lizards roughly the size of your index finger.
How bees live with bacteria
More than 90 percent of all bee species are not organized in colonies, but fight their way through life alone.
The making of 'Fancy Mouse'
For the past few hundred years, the colorful hair and unique patterns of the so-called 'Fancy Mouse' have made them the stars of pet shows in Japan and beyond.
Women are beautiful, men rational
Men are typically described by words that refer to behavior, while adjectives ascribed to women tend to be associated with physical appearance.
New drug combination shows promising activity in non-small cell lung cancer patients
Patients with non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) now have more improved treatment options compared to standard of care with the addition of several new agents called immune-checkpoint inhibitors (ICI).
Prenatal pesticide exposure linked to changes in teen's brain activity
Prenatal exposure to the organophosphate pesticides has been linked to poorer cognition and behavior problems in children.
Scientists discover 'electron equivalents' in colloidal systems
In new research outlined in a recent issue of Science, scientists tethered smaller particles in colloidal crystals to larger ones using DNA, allowing them to determine how the smaller particles filled in the regions surrounding the larger ones.
Researchers develop affordable, less intensive methane detection protocol
A new testing protocol that uses existing, affordable water chemistry tests can help scientists and regulators detect sites showing evidence of new methane gas leaks caused by oil and gas drilling, according to Penn State researchers.
Social media stress can lead to social media addiction
Social network users risk becoming more and more addicted to social media platforms even as they experience stress from their use.
The positives of climate change? WVU research shows agricultural, economic possibilities
Jason Hubbart, director of Institute of Water Security and Science at West Virginia University, found that, between 1900 and 2016, maximum temperatures in West Virginia trended downward, average minimum temperatures ascended and annual precipitation increased.
U of T researchers engineer antibodies that unlock body's regenerative potential
Our body makes antibodies to fight infections. But the synthetic versions of these molecules could hold the key to stimulating the body's ability to regenerate.
Water harvester makes it easy to quench your thirst in the desert
In 2017, UC Berkeley chemists demonstrated that a new MOF design could rapidly adsorb water from even dry air, allowing it to be condensed and collected for drinking.
Intimate partner violence against women creates economic hardship, Rutgers study finds
Women who experience intimate partner violence, including physical, emotional, and controlling abuse, are more likely to suffer material hardship -- the inability to purchase food, housing, utilities, medical care or other needs for a healthy life, according to a Rutgers-led study.
Energy-efficient power electronics -- Gallium oxide power transistors with record values
The Ferdinand-Braun-Institut (FBH) has now achieved a breakthrough with transistors based on gallium oxide (beta-Ga2O3).
Family-school engagement has specific perks for young students
Both elementary school children and middle school children are less likely to have concentration problems and behavioral issues at the end of a school year if their parents made a greater effort to be engaged with their schooling earlier in the year.
Satellite-based estimates of reduced deforestation in protected areas needed
In the context of progressing towards new targets for a post-2020 Global Biodiversity Framework, the debate remains on whether the emphasis should be on protected area coverage or protected area effectiveness.
A new signaling pathway for mTor-dependent cell growth
A team led by the scientist Volker Haucke (Leibniz - Forschungsinstitut für Molekulare Pharmakologie and Freie Universität Berlin) has now discovered how inactivation of a certain lipid kinase promotes mTor complex 1 activity, and may therefore constitute a new point of attack for the treatment of diabetes and cancer.
Pitt researchers create breathalyzer that can detect marijuana
A team from the Department of Chemistry and the Swanson School of Engineering has developed a breathalyzer device that can measure the amount of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the psychoactive compound in marijuana, in the user's breath.
Retina-on-a-chip provides powerful tool for studying eye disease
The development of a retina-on-a-chip, which combines living human cells with an artificial tissue-like system, has been described today in the open-access journal eLife.
Vaccine against deadly superbug Klebsiella effective in mice
Researchers at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis and the biotech startup VaxNewMo have developed a vaccine that is effective, in mice, against hypervirulent strains of Klebsiella that can cause life-threatening infections in healthy adults.
How worms snare their hosts
Acanthocephala are parasitic worms that reproduce in the intestines of various animals, including fish.
Clinical trial shows alternate-day fasting a safe alternative to caloric restriction
The largest clinical study of its kind to look at the effects of strict alternate-day fasting in healthy people has shown a number of health benefits.
Computational approach speeds up advanced microscopy imaging
Researchers have developed a way to enhance the imaging speed of two-photon microscopy up to 5 times without compromising resolution.
New information on regulation of sense of smell with the help of nematodes
PIM kinases are enzymes that are evolutionarily well conserved in both humans and nematodes.
Unraveling the history and science behind ancient decorative metal threads
When it comes to historical fashion, nothing stands out more than an item woven with shiny metal threads.
A molecular 'Trojan Horse'
The research group of Nuno Maulide from the Faculty of Chemistry of the University of Vienna has achieved the synthesis of a potential immunosuppressive agent by modification of a naturally occurring compound.
Enhancing materials for hi-res patterning to advance microelectronics
Scientists created organic-inorganic materials for transferring ultrasmall features into silicon with a high aspect ratio.

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