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Science News | Science Current Events | Brightsurf | January 17, 2020


Reward improves visual perceptual learning -- but only after people sleep
A new study from Brown researchers finds that rewards improve performance on a visual perceptual task only if participants sleep after training.
Research shows real risks associated with cannabis exposure during pregnancy
A new study from researchers at Western University and Queen's University is the first to definitively show that regular exposure to THC, the main psychoactive ingredient in cannabis, during pregnancy has significant impact on placental and fetal development.
Human fetal lungs harbor a microbiome signature
The lungs and placentas of fetuses in the womb -- as young as 11 weeks after conception -- already show a bacterial microbiome signature, which suggests that bacteria may colonize the lungs well before birth.
Spider-Man-style robotic graspers defy gravity
Traditional methods of vacuum suction and previous vacuum suction devices cannot maintain suction on rough surfaces due to vacuum leakage, which leads to suction failure.
New dog, old tricks? Stray dogs can understand human cues
Pet dogs are highly receptive to commands from their owners.
Charge model for calculating the photoexcited states of one-dimensional Mott insulators
Japanese researchers have developed a charge model to describe photoexcited states of one-dimensional Mott insulators.
NASA water vapor imagery shows Tino's heavy rain potential over Fiji
When NASA's Aqua satellite passed over the Southern Pacific Ocean it gathered water vapor data that provided information about the intensity of Tropical Cyclone Tino.
Molecules move faster on a rough terrain
Contrary to what one might think, molecules can move faster in the proximity of rougher surfaces.
Study: Neuron found in mice could have implications for effective diet drugs
A CALCR cell found in mice may stop feeding without subsequential nauseating effects, as well as influence the long term intake of food.
What is an endangered species?
What makes for an endangered species classification isn't always obvious.
NJIT scientists measure the evolving energy of a solar flare's explosive first minutes
In 2017, a massive new region of magnetic field erupted on the sun's surface next to an existing sunspot.
Psychedelic drugs could help treat PTSD
Clinical trials suggest treatment that involves psychedelics can be more effective than psychotherapy alone.
Study quashes controversial vitamin C treatment for sepsis with global trial
A paper published today in the Journal of the American Medical Association by Monash researchers comprehensively quashes the idea that the vitamin C-based cocktail has any positive impact on patients with sepsis.
Scurvy is still a thing in Canada
McMaster University researchers surveyed the data of patients of Hamilton's two hospital systems over nine years and found 52 with low Vitamin C levels.
Walking with atoms -- chemical bond making and breaking recorded in action
Scientists have for the first time captured and filmed atoms bonding together, using advanced microscopy methods they captured a moment that is around half a million times smaller than the width of a human hair.
The Lancet: Fewer than half of US clinical trials have complied with the law on reporting results, despite new regulations
Less than half (41%) of clinical trial results are reported promptly onto the US trial registry, and 1 in 3 trials remain unreported, according to the first comprehensive study of compliance since new US regulations came into effect in January 2017.
Blood test for eight gene signatures can predict onset of tuberculosis
Scientists at UCL have shown a blood test could predict the onset of tuberculosis three to six months before people become unwell, a finding which could help better target antibiotics and save countless lives.
Researchers find that cookies increase ad revenue for online publishers
How long has it been since you logged onto a Web site and you were prompted to decide whether to opt out of 'cookies' that the site told you will enhance your online experience?
Rich rewards: Scientists reveal ADHD medication's effect on the brain
Researchers at the Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology Graduate University (OIST) have identified how certain areas of the human brain respond to methylphenidate -- a stimulant drug which is used to treat symptoms of ADHD.
New tumor-driving mutations discovered in the under-explored regions of the cancer genome
In an unprecedented pan-cancer analysis of whole genomes, researchers at the Ontario Institute for Cancer Research (OICR) have discovered new regions of non-coding DNA that, when altered, may lead to cancer growth and progression.
Psychology program for refugee children improves wellbeing
A positive psychology program created by researchers at Queen Mary University of London focuses on promoting wellbeing in refugee children.
It takes more than two to tango: Microbial communities influence animal sex and reproduction
It is an awkward idea, but a couple's ability to have kids may partly depend on who else is present.
The way you dance is unique, and computers can tell it's you
Nearly everyone responds to music with movement, whether through subtle toe-tapping or an all-out boogie.
Faking emotions at work does more harm than good
Faking your emotions at work to appear more positive likely does more harm than good, according to a University of Arizona researcher.
How sensitive can a quantum detector be?
Measuring the energy of quantum states requires detecting energy changes so exceptionally small they are hard to pick out from background fluctuations, like using only a thermometer to try and work out if someone has blown out a candle in the room you're in.
Long term risks cast further doubt on the use of Viagra for foetal therapy
University of Manchester scientists investigating a possible treatment for foetal growth restriction (FGR), a condition in which babies grow poorly in the womb, have urged further caution on the use of Viagra.
Programmable nests for cells
Using DNA, smallest silica particles, and carbon nanotubes, researchers of Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) developed novel programmable materials.
Ingestible medical devices can be broken down with light
MIT engineers have developed a light-sensitive material that allows gastrointestinal devices to be triggered to break down inside the body when they are exposed to light from an ingestible LED.
Prosecutors' race, class bias may not drive criminal justice disparities
Years of observational studies suggest that prosecutors' race and class biases are among the primary drivers for disparities in criminal justice.
Microplastics affect sand crabs' mortality and reproduction, PSU study finds
Sand crabs, a key species in beach ecosystems, were found to have increased adult mortality and decreased reproductive success when exposed to plastic microfibers, according to a new Portland State University study.
Transformational innovation needed to reach global forest restoration goals
New research finds that global South countries have pledged the largest areas of land to forest restoration, and are also farthest behind in meeting their targets due to challenging factors such as population growth, corruption, and deforestation.
PEPTIC trial comparing strategies to prevent stress ulcers in ICU patients needing mechanical ventilation
Researchers report on a randomized clinical trial that compared two strategies (proton pump inhibitors vs. histamine-2 receptor blockers) to prevent stress ulcers among adult patients in intensive care units who needed mechanical ventilation.
Study finds disparity in critical care deaths between non-minority and minority hospitals
While deaths steadily declined over a decade in intensive care units at hospitals with few minority patients, in ICUs with large numbers of minority patients, there was less improvement, according to new research published online in the American Thoracic Society's American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine.
VITAMINS trial report on vitamin C, hydrocortisone, thiamine for septic shock
In this randomized clinical trial of about 200 patients with septic shock, combination treatment with intravenous vitamin C, hydrocortisone and thiamine compared with intravenous hydrocortisone alone didn't significantly improve the amount of time patients were alive and free of medicines that raise blood pressure (vasopressors) over seven days.
Here and gone: Outbound comets are likely of alien origin
Astronomers at the National Astronomical Observatory of Japan (NAOJ) have analyzed the paths of two objects heading out of the Solar System forever and determined that they also most likely originated from outside of the Solar System.
Acid reflux drugs may have negative side effects for breast cancer survivors
Acid reflux drugs that are sometimes recommended to ease stomach problems during cancer treatment may have an unintended side effect: impairment of breast cancer survivors' memory and concentration.
Green in tooth and claw
Hard plant foods may have made up a larger part of early human ancestors' diet than currently presumed, according to a new experimental study of modern tooth enamel from Washington University in St.
Chemists have managed to stabilize the 'capricious' phosphorus
An international team of Russian, Swedish and Ukrainian scientists has identified an effective strategy to improve the stability of two-dimensional black phosphorus, which is a promising material for use in optoelectronics.
Digital athletics in analogue stadiums
Why do people pay money travel to big arenas to watch people sit in chairs and stare into screens?
Observational study explores fish oil supplements, testicular function in healthy young men
An observational study of nearly 1,700 young healthy Danish men looked at how fish oil supplements were associated with testicular function as measured by semen quality and reproductive hormone levels.
Miniature double glazing
Scientists at the Max Planck Institute for Polymer Research (MPI-P) in Mainz and the University of Bayreuth have jointly developed and characterized a novel, extremely thin and transparent material that has different thermal conduction properties depending on the direction.
'Melting rock' models predict mechanical origins of earthquakes
Engineers at Duke University have devised a model that can predict the early mechanical behaviors and origins of an earthquake in multiple types of rock.
Study traces evolution of acoustic communication
A study tracing acoustic communication across the tree of life of land-living vertebrates reveals that the ability to vocalize goes back hundreds of millions of years, is associated with a nocturnal lifestyle and has remained stable.
Human-caused biodiversity decline started millions of years ago
The human-caused biodiversity decline started much earlier than researchers used to believe.
Climate may play a bigger role than deforestation in rainforest biodiversity
In a study on small mammal biodiversity in the Atlantic Forest, researchers found that climate may affect biodiversity in rainforests even more than deforestation does.
Rethinking interactions with mental health patients
New research overturns the belief that people with severe mental illness are incapable of effective communication with their psychiatrist, and are able to work together with them to achieve better outcomes for themselves.
Not all of nature's layered structures are tough as animal shells and antlers, study finds
Engineers looking to nature for inspiration have long assumed that layered structures like those found in mollusk shells enhance a material's toughness, but a study shows that's not always the case.
UVA professor Matthew B. Dwyer named a fellow by the Association for Computing Machinery
The Association for Computing Machinery has named Matthew B. Dwyer, a University of Virginia professor of computer science, a fellow.
The core of massive dying galaxies already formed 1.5 billion years after the Big Bang
The most distant dying galaxy discovered so far, more massive than our Milky Way -- with more than a trillion stars -- has revealed that the 'cores' of these systems had formed already 1.5 billion years after the Big Bang, about 1 billion years earlier than previous measurements revealed.
New scheduling tool offers both better flight choices and increased airline profits
Researchers from Dartmouth and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) have developed an original approach to flight scheduling that, if implemented, could result in a significant increase in profits for airlines and more flights that align with passengers' preferences.
3D printing with applications in the pharmaceutical industry
This achievement will have applications in the pharmaceutical industry, such as in the preparation of biocompatible biosensors based in gold, which have already been shown to be effective in the detection of carcinogenic cells and tumour biomarkers.
Sanitary care by social ants shapes disease outcome
Sanitary care in ants to fight disease is known to improve the wellbeing of the colony, yet it has been unclear how social disease defense interferes with pathogen competition inside the individual host body.
Cheap drug may alleviate treatment-resistance in leukemia
A common and inexpensive drug may be used to counteract treatment resistance in patients with acute myeloid leukemia (AML), one of the most common forms of blood cancer.
UVA engineering professor Jack W. Davidson named an IEEE fellow
UVA Engineering computer science professor Jack W. Davidson has been named an Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Fellow in recognition of his contributions to compilers, computer security and computer science education.
Artificial intelligence to improve resolution of brain magnetic resonance imaging
Researchers of the ICAI Group -Computational Intelligence and Image Analysis- of the University of Malaga (UMA) have designed an unprecedented method that is capable of improving brain images obtained through magnetic resonance imaging using artificial intelligence.
Violence and adversity in early life can alter the brain
But social supports can reduce the negative effects of childhood stress.
Study: Critical care improvements may differ depending on hospital's patient population
A new study led by researchers at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center reveals that while critical care outcomes in ICUs steadily improved over a decade at hospitals with few minority patients, ICUs with a more diverse patient population did not progress comparably.
Male sparrows are less intimidated by the songs of aging rivals
Few singers reach their sunset years with the same voice they had in younger days.
America's most widely consumed oil causes genetic changes in the brain
New UC Riverside research shows soybean oil not only leads to obesity and diabetes, but could also affect neurological conditions like autism, Alzheimer's disease, anxiety, and depression.
Chemists allow boron atoms to migrate
Organic molecules with atoms of the semi-metal boron are important building blocks for synthesis products to produce drugs and agricultural chemicals.
Internet use reduces study skills in university students
Research conducted at Swansea University and the University of Milan has shown that students who use digital technology excessively are less motivated to engage with their studies, and are more anxious about tests.

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