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Science News | Science Current Events | Brightsurf | February 28, 2020


Hunter-gatherer networks accelerated human evolution
Humans began developing a complex culture as early as the Stone Age.
Scientists discover three genes associated with fatal lung disease
Researchers at the Universities of Leicester and Nottingham have discovered parts of the DNA that put some people at higher risk of an incurable lung disease called idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF).
SUWA: A hyperstable artificial protein that does not denature in high temperatures above 100°C
Successful development of a highly stable artificial protein that only denatures at 122 °C.
Unraveling turbulence
Researchers at the Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences (SEAS) may have identified a fundamental mechanism by which turbulence develops by smashing vortex rings head-on into each other, recording the results with ultra-high-resolution cameras, and reconstructing the collision dynamics using a 3D visualization program.
Discovering what makes durian stink
Researchers at the Leibniz-Institute for Food Systems Biology at the Technical University of Munich (Leibniz-LSB@TUM) have confirmed the presence of the rare amino acid ethionine in a plant -- or more precisely, in the fruit of the durian tree.
Taking a bite out of food waste: Scientists repurpose waste bread to feed microbes
Food waste is a serious economic and environmental problem. Researchers have developed a protocol using waste bread as a medium to grow microorganisms for the fermented food industry.
Reconfigurable chiral microlaser by spontaneous symmetry breaking
A team of researchers led by Professor Xiao Yun-Feng and Professor Gong Qihuang at Peking University has demonstrated a spontaneously symmetry-broken microlaser in an ultrahigh-Q WGM microcavity, exhibiting reconfigurable propagating directions of the chiral laser.
Tracking down the mystery of matter
Researchers at the Paul Scherrer Institute PSI have measured a property of the neutron more precisely than ever before.
Why is there any matter in the universe at all? New Sussex study sheds light
Scientists at the University of Sussex have measured a property of the neutron -- a fundamental particle in the universe -- more precisely than ever before.
Old weapon, new target: Dasatinib against angioimmunoblastic T-cell lymphoma
Researchers from the University of Tsukuba have shown by in vivo experimentation on a mouse model that angioimmunoblastic T-cell lymphoma is highly dependent on T-Cell Receptor Signaling.
How pest management strategies affect the bottom line
Concern regarding impacts of pesticides on the environment and human health has led to the development of integrated pest management (IPM) programs.
Advancing gene therapies: PIP pip hurray!
A new compound has the potential to bind to DNA and activate genes, which could lead to new treatments for cancers and hereditary diseases.
When should you eat to manage your weight? Breakfast, not late-night snacks
The balance between weight gain and weight gain loss is predominantly determined by what you eat, how much you eat, and by how much exercise you get.
New tool aims to assist military logistics in evacuating noncombatants
Researchers from the US Army and North Carolina State University have developed a computational model that can be used to expedite military operations aimed at evacuating noncombatants, disaster response or humanitarian relief.
New platform for engineering ribosomes to 'cook new cuisines'
Researchers have created a method for cell-free synthesis and evolution of new ribosomes that can specialize in the synthesis of functional materials and therapeutics.
Containing methane and its contribution to global warming
Methane is a gas that deserves more attention in the climate debate as it contributes to almost half of human-made global warming in the short-term.
Outcomes of Florida law restricting opioid prescribing for acute pain
Some states have enacted laws restricting opioid prescribing for the treatment of acute pain and this research letter assess the outcomes associated with Florida's restriction law.
Sugar gets the red light from consumers in new study
Researchers have found that sugar content is the most important factor for people when making healthy food choices -- overriding fat and salt.
Gene therapy generates new neurons to treat Huntington's disease
Huntington's disease (HD) is a rare disease with chorea movement and caused by Huntingtin (Htt) gene mutation and neurodegeneration.
GPS for chromosomes: Reorganization of the genome during development
The spatial arrangement of genetic material within the cell nucleus plays an important role in the development of an organism.
Actin filaments control the shape of the cell structure that divides plant cells
A Japanese research group using microscopic video analysis provides deeper insight into the mechanics of plant cell division.
Fast cars and chocolate bars: Bringing physics to the public
Physics is more than black holes, quarks and dark matter.
Researchers announce progress in developing an accurate, noninvasive urine test for prostate cancer
Researchers at the Johns Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Center have made significant progress toward development of a simple, noninvasive liquid biopsy test that detects prostate cancer from RNA and other specific metabolic chemicals in the urine.
High sugar diet may impair metabolic health & maternal care after pregnancy
Rats on a high sugar diet during pregnancy have altered levels of sex steroid hormones and dopamine in their brains, which may lead to behavioural changes that can affect care of offspring and motivation, as well as increasing the risk of diabetes and liver disease, according to a study published in the Journal of Endocrinology.
Antioxidant supplements do not improve male fertility, NIH study suggests
Antioxidant supplements do not improve semen quality among men with infertility, according to a new study supported by the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development .
Physiotherapy could be done at home using virtual reality
Virtual reality could help physiotherapy patients complete their exercises at home successfully thanks to researchers at WMG, University of Warwick, who managed to combine VR technology with 3D motion capture.
Ultrafast probing reveals intricate dynamics of quantum coherence
Ultrafast, multidimensional spectroscopy unlocks macroscopic-scale effects of quantum electronic correlations.
Immunology: Tonsils as a testbed
Biomedical researchers at Ludwig-Maximilians-Universitaet (LMU) in Munich have isolated immune cells from human tonsils obtained following routine surgery, and used them to analyze aspects of the immune response and test the effects of anti-inflammatory agents at the cellular level.
Male-killing bacteria linked to butterfly color changes
Like many poisonous animals, the African monarch butterfly's orange, white and black pattern warns predators that it is toxic.
Paleontologists discover why the oceans are so diverse
Slow, steady evolution in animal groups that contain many different ecological lifestyles has been a key buffer against extinction, the new research shows.
Highlighting product greenness may put consumers off buying
New research suggests that companies looking to promote their latest environmentally friendly product should downplay its green credentials if they want consumers to buy it.
New study explains why superconductivity takes place in graphene
Theoretical physicists take important step in development of high temperature superconductors.
How ACA associated with out-of-pocket spending by patients with traumatic injuries
This observational study with nearly 6,300 patients who visited the emergency department or who were hospitalized for a traumatic injury examined how implementation of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) was associated with out-of-pocket and premium spending among those patients.
A massive star's dying breaths
Betelgeuse has been the center of significant media attention lately.
Omega-3 fats do not protect against cancer
Omega-3 fats do not protect against cancer -- according to new University of East Anglia research.
Hunter-gatherers facilitated a cultural revolution through small social networks
Hunter-gatherer ancestors, from around 300,000 years ago, facilitated a cultural revolution by developing ideas in small social networks, and regularly drawing on knowledge from neighbouring camps, suggests a new study by UCL and University of Zurich.
Anomalies in structure of polyvalent metal melts explained
Metals and their alloys are the main structural materials of modern civilization.
Male-killing bugs hold key to butterflies' curious color changes
An international team of researchers have shed new light on the complex reproductive process which dictates that only female offspring of the Danaus chrysippus survive -- all in close proximity to Kenya's capital, Nairobi.
Asteroid impact enriches certain elements in seawater
University of Tsukuba researchers found two processes immediately after the end-Cretaceous asteroid impact that likely supplied chalcophile elements to the ocean, i.e., impact heating and acid rain.
Study shows rapid sea level rise along Atlantic coast of North America in 18th century
Sea levels along a stretch of the Atlantic coast of North America in the 18th century were rising almost as fast as in the 20th century, a new study has revealed.
DNA discovery can lead to new types of cancer drugs
Researchers from the University of Copenhagen have discovered that our cells replicate their DNA much more loosely than previously thought.
Quarantine on cruise ship resulted in more Corona patients
The cruise ship Diamond Princess was quarantined for over two weeks resulting in more coronavirus infected passengers than if they would have disembarked immediately.
Unique material could unlock new functionality in semiconductors
In an article published today in Science Advances, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute researchers detailed how they designed and synthesized a unique material with controllable capabilities that make it very promising for future electronics.
Tracking communication networks and the diffusion of information
Tracking communication and movement in this hyperconnected world can seem overwhelming.
COVID-19 a reminder of the challenge of emerging infectious diseases
The emergence and rapid increase in cases of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), a respiratory illness caused by a novel coronavirus, pose complex challenges to the global public health, research and medical communities, write federal scientists from NIH's National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) and from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
An iron-clad asteroid
Mineralogists from Jena and Japan discover a previously unknown phenomenon in soil samples from the asteroid 'Itokawa': the surface of the celestial body is covered with tiny hair-shaped iron crystals.
Kids eat more calories in post-game snacks than they burn during the game
A new study led by Brigham Young University public health researchers finds the number of calories kids consume from post-game snacks far exceeds the number of calories they actually burn playing in the game.
Unintended pregnancy rates higher among women with disabilities, study says
Pregnancies among women with disabilities are 42% more likely to be unintended than pregnancies among women without disabilities, says a new report published in the journal Perspectives on Sexual and Reproductive Health.
Stress-relief substrate helps OLED stretch two-dimensionally?
Highly functional and free-form displays are critical components to complete the technological prowess of wearable electronics, robotics, and human-machine interfaces.
Even damaged livers can handle life-saving medication
Doctors used to make patients with drug-induced liver injury stop taking all their medications until the liver healed, but this could be dangerous.
Inhalation therapy shows promise against pulmonary fibrosis in mice, rats
A new study shows that lung stem cell secretions -- specifically exosomes and secretomes -- delivered via nebulizer, can help repair lung injuries due to multiple types of pulmonary fibrosis in mice and rats.
A dam right across the North Sea
A 475-km-long dam between the north of Scotland and the west of Norway and another one of 160 km between the west point of France and the southwest of England could protect more than 25 million Europeans against the consequences of an expected sea level rise of several meters over the next few centuries.
Cancer mechanics: How physical cues influence cell migration, metastasis, and treatment
New research on the tumor mechanical microenvironment will be presented at the 2020 American Physical Society March Meeting in Denver.
Two sides of a coin: Our own immune cells damage the integrity of the blood-brain barrier
Researchers have shown that microglia, a class of immune cells in the brain, regulate the permeability of the brain's protective barrier in response to systemic inflammation.
Oncotarget | SLC25A32 sustains cancer cell proliferation by regulating flavin adenine nucleotide (FAD) metabolism
Oncotarget Volume 11 Issue 8 reported that while it is known that cancer cells require one-carbon and FAD-dependent mitochondrial metabolism to sustain cell proliferation, the role of SLC25A32 in cancer cell growth remains unexplored.
Rare disease in children: the key role of a protein revealed
Professor Stéphane Lefrançois, a researcher at the Institut National de la Recherche Scientifique (INRS), is working on Batten disease, a neurodegenerative genetic disease that primarily affects children.
Cartilage cells, chromosomes and DNA preserved in 75 million-year-old baby duck-billed dinosaur
In a paper published online in National Science Review, an international team of scientists present evidence of fossilized cell nuclei and chromosomes within preserved cartilage in a baby duck-billed dinosaur.
The enemy within: How a killer hijacked one of nature's oldest relationships
Researchers have discovered how a notorious pathogen may have hijacked one of nature's most enduring mutual relationships.
How much does black carbon contribute to climate warming?
Black carbon particles -- more commonly known as soot -- absorb heat in the atmosphere.
New state-of-the-MOF materials
Metal-organic frameworks (MOFs) are porous, crystalline materials that can trap compounds within their molecular cavities, giving them a wide range of applications in gas storage and separation, carbon capture, and in the catalysis of chemical reactions, to name a few.
Clinical factors during pregnancy related to congenital cytomegalovirus infection
A group led by researchers from Kobe University has illuminated clinical factors that are related to the occurrence of congenital cytomegalovirus (CMV) infection in newborns.
Genetic signature boosts protein production during cell division
A research team has uncovered a genetic signature that enables cells to adapt their protein production according to their state.
Scientists came up with nanoconcrete for casting under negative temperature conditions
Engineers from Far Eastern Federal University Military training center (FEFU, Vladivostok, Russia) together with colleagues from RUDN University have developed concrete mixture with nano additives for monolithic construction up to ten stories high.
Cat food mystery foils diet study
How a study aimed at assessing the wildlife impacts of domestic cats was foiled by the mysterious ingredients of cat food.
Conspiracy beliefs could increase fringe political engagement, shows new study
New research appearing in Social Psychological and Personality Science finds that when studying an average person, conspiracy beliefs lead to more willingness for engagement in 'non-normative' roles, like illegally blocking a public entryway, while avoiding more typical political engagement, such as voting.
AJR: Novel coronavirus (COVID-19) imaging features overlap with SARS and MERS
Although COVID-19's imaging features are variable and nonspecific, the findings thus far do show ''significant overlap'' with those of severe acute respiratory syndrome and Middle East respiratory syndrome.
KIST develops biofuel production process in cooperation with North American researchers
Biofuel is often touted as a clean fuel, but the fact that it is made using food sources is a major drawback.
Deep-sea coral gardens discovered in the submarine canyons off south Western Australia
Stunning 'gardens' of deep-sea corals have been discovered in the Bremer Canyon Marine Park by Australian and international scientists during an oceanographic expedition aboard Schmidt Ocean Institute's R/V Falkor.
The first Cell Atlas for the human Thymus
For the first time, scientists from the VIB Center for Inflammation Research, Ghent University, The Wellcome Sanger Institute (UK), and Newcastle University (UK) have composed a complete map of the cells in the developing human thymus.

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