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


Under pressure: New bioinspired material can 'shapeshift' to external forces
Inspired by how human bone and colorful coral reefs adjust mineral deposits in response to their surrounding environments, Johns Hopkins researchers have created a self-adapting material that can change its stiffness in response to the applied force.
Two novel viruses identified in Brazilian patients with suspected dengue
Species never before found in humans described in PLOS ONE belong to the genera Ambidensovirus and Chapparvovirus.
Study detects presence of disease-causing E. coli in recreational waters, including in bathing waters rated excellent under EU criteria
New research due to be presented at this year's European Congress on Clinical Microbiology and Infectious Diseases (ECCMID) has revealed the presence of disease-causing E. coli in recreational waters, including from beaches rated excellent under EU criteria.
Elderly patients with pneumonia twice as likely to die as those with broken hips, yet underestimate the danger of pneumonia
Elderly patients who are hospitalised with pneumonia are twice as likely to die as those hospitalised with hip fractures -- yet many elderly people fail to accurately assess their risk of pneumonia, concludes research due to be presented at the European Congress of Clinical Microbiology and Infectious Diseases (ECCMID).
Trade friction: Adaptiveness of swarms of complex networks
Network analysis revealed power-law properties of core and peripheral networks.
Cancer care needs mass COVID-19 testing
Thousands of cancer patients in the UK have had their treatment stopped or delayed because of COVID-19, and with pressures mounting on the health service, Cancer Research UK calls for widespread testing to prevent unnecessary cancer deaths.
From watching reruns to relationships, there are many ways of feeling connected
New research from the University at Buffalo suggests that non-traditional social strategies, which can include so-called ''guilty pleasures,'' are just as effective at fulfilling critical social needs as family connections, romantic relationships or strong social support systems.
Nanoparticles: Acidic alert
Researchers of Ludwig-Maximilians-Universitaet (LMU) in Munich have synthesized nanoparticles that can be induced by a change in pH to release a deadly dose of ionized iron within cells.
Quantum entanglement offers unprecedented precision for GPS, imaging and beyond
UA engineers have demonstrated for the first time that it's possible to connect a network of sensors through quantum entanglement.
Business-to-business customers expect personal service in online chat
Companies engaged in business-to-business (B2B) sales are also increasingly moving their activities online, but their online chat services and customer interaction have not been studied much yet.
Africa in the path of COVID-19
In a New England Journal of Medicine paper, researchers urge a coordinated global effort in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic, with countries around the world [taking] concrete steps to assist Africa in staying ahead of the curve, even as they confront their own epidemics.
Relying on 'local food' is a distant dream for most of the world
A recent study from Aalto University shows that less than one-third of the world's population could currently meet their demand for food produced in their local vicinity.
3D models of mountain lakes with a portable sonar and airborne laser
The information of the territory provided by the laser technology from an airplane can be combined with data collected in mountain lakes with an inflatable boat and a small echo sounder to obtain three-dimensional maps.
Can sub-Saharan Africa achieve sustainable access to energy for all by 2030?
In 2019, the global population without access to electricity dipped below 1 billion for the first time.
To warn or to hide from predators?: New computer simulation provides answers
Some toxic animals are bright to warn predators from attacking them, and some hide the warning colors, showing them only at the very last moment when they are about to be attacked.
Increased rate of infections may indicate a future cancer diagnosis
Patients experienced a greater occurrence of infections in the years preceding a cancer diagnosis.
A key brain region for controlling binge drinking has been found
A team of researchers at the Charleston Alcohol Research Center at the Medical University of South Carolina has found that turning off a stress signaling system in a single specific brain area can reduce harmful binge drinking.
Dance with your grandma (not during COVID-19 of course)
According to new research, Dance Movement Therapy (DMT) may promote exercise, improve quality of life, and bond grandparents and grandchildren.
Lighting the way to safer heart procedures
In the first study of its kind, Johns Hopkins researchers provide evidence that an alternative imaging technique could someday replace current methods that require potentially harmful radiation.
New economic model may prevent stops of capital flow
The 'sudden stops of capital flows' model enables the adequacy of macroeconomic policies, one year in advance, against the risk of a sudden contraction of international. investments.
Modeling social distancing strategies for curbing the COVID-19 pandemic
As the COVID-19 pandemic continues, a major unanswered question is how SARS-CoV-2 will persist in the human population after its initial pandemic stage.
Study shows it is safe to give antibiotics to mothers after umbilical cord clamping in C-sections, to avoid exposure of newborns
New research to be presented at the European Congress of Clinical Microbiology and Infectious Diseases (ECCMID) shows that it is safe to give antibiotics to mothers after umbilical cord clamping in cesarean section, rather than before, to avoid exposure of the newborn baby to these drugs.
Lactic acid bacteria present in kimchi cabbage and garlic carry out the fermentation
Kimchi, a traditional Korean fermented vegetable food, is fermented by lactic acid bacteria derived from raw ingredients, such as kimchi cabbage, garlic, ginger, and red pepper.
KIST and UNIST joint research team develop a high-capacity battery material using salmon DNA
A Korean research team has succeeded in developing next-generation high-capacity cathode material for lithium-ion batteries.
New route of assembly and ionic channel traffic in cardiac cells
Ionic channels -integral proteins in the cell membrane- are essential in several processes such as cardiac activity, nervous transmission, cell proliferation and the regulation of blood pressure.
Nasal smear as an allergy screening test
In the world of allergy diagnostics, the familiar blood samples and unpleasant skin prick procedures for testing allergen tolerance may soon be a thing of the past.
Cancer drug resistance study raises immune red flags
Once a cancer patient's tumors develop resistance to chemotherapy, the prognosis can be poor.
A new treatment for liver cancer
In the latest issue of Molecular Therapy, Skoltech and MIT researchers have published a new combinatorial therapy for the treatment of liver cancer.
The origin of feces: coproID reliably predicts sources of ancient poop
The archaeological record is littered with feces, a potential goldmine for insights into ancient health and diet, parasite evolution, and the ecology and evolution of the microbiome.
Beyond encryption: Protecting consumer privacy while keeping survey results accurate
Data privacy laws require encryption and, in some cases, transforming the original data to 'protected data' before it's released to external parties.
Overuse of emergency room reducible through primary care relationship
Using the case of lead exposure in Flint, Michigan, health economist David Slusky and colleagues found that establishing a relationship with a primary care physician for a child reduced the likelihood parents would take them to emergency rooms for conditions treatable in an office setting.
Study of sewage finds link between different rates of sepsis in UK and presence of E. coli in the community
A study to be presented at European Congress on Clinical Microbiology and Infectious Diseases (ECCMID) shows that rates of Escherichia coli related sepsis in different regions of the UK could be directly linked to the levels of pathogenic (disease-causing) E. coli in the community, as determined by its presence in sewage in that area.
RIT researchers build micro-device to detect bacteria, viruses
Ke Du and Blanca Lapizco-Encinas, both faculty-researchers in RIT's Kate Gleason College of Engineering, worked with an international team to collaborate on the design of a next-generation miniature lab device that uses magnetic nano-beads to isolate minute bacterial particles that cause diseases.
Valorizing wastewater can improve commercial viability of biomass oil production
Oil produced from biomass can provide a sustainable alternative to fossil fuels.
Co-delivery of IL-10 and NT-3 to enhance spinal cord injury repair
Spinal cord injury (SCI) creates a complex microenvironment that is not conducive to repair; growth factors are in short supply, whereas factors that inhibit regeneration are plentiful.
Dissecting the mechanism of protein unfolding by SDS
A new study by the Aksimentiev group at the University of Illinois has used molecular dynamics simulations to understand how sodium dodecyl sulfate, a commonly used detergent in labs, induces protein folding.
Mismanagment, not tampering, at root of supply problems for Ugandan farmers
For years, speculation about the poor quality of vital agricultural supplies in the African nation of Uganda has focused on questions of deliberate tampering with products -- adding rocks to bags of seed in order to charge more money for the heavier product, for instance.
Individual genetic variation in immune system may affect severity of COVID-19
Genetic variability in the human immune system may affect susceptibility to, and severity of infection by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), the virus responsible for the coronavirus disease (COVID-19).
Simulations show how to make gene therapy more effective
Diseases with a genetic cause could be treated by supplying a correct version of the faulty gene.
Histones and their modifications are crucial for adaptation to cell stress
More than 200 regions (amino acids) in histones are identified as responsible for regulating the response to cell stress.
Women receive less recommended drugs after a heart attack
Women are more likely to die after a heart attack than men because they are often not prescribed the drugs they need.
Texas A&M researchers uncover the art of printing extremely hard steels flawlessly
For millennia, metallurgists have been meticulously tweaking the ingredients of steel to enhance its properties.
UM study finds diverse diet as effective as sports supplements for female athletes
A recently released study from the University of Montana has discovered that common 'edge,' sports nutrition products, are no more effective at promoting recovery in female athletes as regular, carbohydrate-rich, often less-expensive potato-based foods.
Cell biology: Your number's up!
mRNAs program the synthesis of proteins in cells, and their functional lifetimes are dynamically regulated.
The Lancet Public Health: Study examines how Hong Kong managed first wave of COVID-19 without resorting to complete lockdown
Hong Kong appears to have averted a major COVID-19 outbreak up to March 31, 2020, by adopting far less drastic control measures than most other countries, with a combination of border entry restrictions, quarantine and isolation of cases and contacts, together with some degree of social distancing, according to a new observational study published in The Lancet Public Health journal.
Mysterious tuft cells found to play role in pancreatitis
A team of Salk scientists led by Professor Geoffrey Wahl and Staff Scientist Kathleen DelGiorno has uncovered the formation of tuft cells during pancreatitis and the surprising role of these cells in immunity, using mouse models of pancreatitis.
Virginia Tech's fog harp harvests water even in the lightest fog
'We already knew that in heavy fog, we can get at least two times as much water,' said Boreyko.
Terpenoids and aromatic compounds from bryophytes and their central nervous system activity
In this article, Agnieszka Ludwiczuk (Medical University of Lublin, Poland) and Yoshinori Asakawa (Tokushima Bunri University, Japan) review the chemistry of the liverworts, mosses, and hornworts.
New discovery settles long-standing debate about photovoltaic materials
Scientists have theorized that organometallic halide perovskites-- a class of light harvesting 'wonder' materials for applications in solar cells and quantum electronics -- are so promising due to an unseen yet highly controversial mechanism called the Rashba effect.
Papua New Guinea highland research redates Neolithic period
A new report published in Science Advances on the emergence of agriculture in highland Papua New Guinea shows advancements often associated with a later Neolithic period occurred about 1,000 years' earlier than previously thought.
The lipid code
So far, it has been difficult to analyze the functions of lipid molecules in living cells.
Researchers achieve remote control of hormone release
Using magnetic nanoparticles, scientists stimulate the adrenal gland in rodents to control release of hormones linked to stress.
Stem cells in human embryos commit to specialization surprisingly early
The point when human embryonic stem cells irreversibly commit to becoming specialised has been identified by researchers at the Francis Crick Institute.
Mutual funds with lower tax burdens have higher returns
Tax-efficient mutual funds provide higher gains for investors and, therefore, more income for shareholders.
Chamber measurement standards established for fine particles
What effects do global warming and the formation of fine particles have on each other?
Exercise during pregnancy reduces obesity among offspring
When physically fit women exercise during pregnancy they could be setting their children up for better fitness too, according to new WSU research.
Extinction of threatened marine megafauna would lead to huge loss in functional diversity
The extinction of threatened marine megafauna species could result in larger than expected losses in functional diversity, according to research led by Swansea University.
Researchers identify a model of COVID-19 infection in nonhuman primates
After comparing how infections from SARS-CoV-2 (which causes COVID-19) and two other human coronaviruses develop in cynomolgus macaques, researchers report that SARS-CoV-2 gives the animals a mild COVID-19-like disease.
COVID-19 possibly striking more children than expected
Researchers at the University of South Florida reviewed data available from the Chinese Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and determined for every child hospitalized for COVID-19 in the US, there are actually 2,381 children infected with the virus.
Novel technology aims to improve treatment of neurological diseases
Researchers at Princeton University are developing new ''gene promoters'' - which act like switches to turn genes on - for use with gene therapy, the delivery of new genes to replace ones that are faulty.

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