Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

May 01, 2020
Structural visualizations illuminate remdesivir's mechanism of action
In a new study, researchers report the structure of remdesivir -- an antiviral drug that has shown promise against the SARS-CoV-2 virus in lab studies and early clinical trials -- bound to both a molecule of RNA and to the viral polymerase.

Pressing 'pause' on nature's crystal symmetry
From snowflakes to quartz, nature's crystalline structures form with a reliable, systemic symmetry.

Pacific oysters may not contain as many microplastics as previously thought
University of Washington researchers have discovered that the abundance of tiny microplastic contaminants in Pacific oysters from the Salish Sea is much lower than previously thought.

Organoid models reveal how the COVID-19 virus infects human intestinal cells
A new analysis of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, reveals that the pathogen can infect and replicate in cells that line the inside of the human intestines.

In search of the lighting material of the future
At the Paul Scherrer Institute PSI, researchers have gained insights into a promising material for organic light-emitting diodes (OLEDs).

Looking for dark matter with the universe's coldest material
A study in PRL reports on how researchers at ICFO have built a spinor BEC comagnetometer, an instrument for studying the axion, a hypothetical particle that may explain the mystery of dark matter.

Green method could enable hospitals to produce hydrogen peroxide in house
A team of researchers has developed a portable, more environmentally friendly method to produce hydrogen peroxide.

Molecular basis of rare neurological disorder reveals potential treatment
Edwin Chapman has long studied how one protein triggers the release of neurotransmitters, allowing neurons to communicate.

Improved neural probe can pose precise questions without losing parts of the answers
A technique for studying individual circuits in the brains of mice has been hampered because the light needed to stimulate neural activity briefly overwhelms the electrodes 'listening' for the response.

CO2 emissions from dry inland waters globally underestimated
Inland waters play an important role in the global carbon cycle.

UBC researchers establish new timeline for ancient magnetic field on Mars
Mars had a global magnetic field much earlier -- and much later -- than previously known.

QT interval prolongation, hydroxychloroquine, azithromycin in hospitalized patients with COVID-19
This observational study examines the association of hydroxychloroquine or hydroxychloroquine and azithromycin with QT prolongation in adult patients hospitalized with coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).

Sustainable structural material for plastic substitute
A team lead by Prof. Shu-Hong Yu from the University of Science and Technology of China (USTC) report a high-performance sustainable structural material called cellulose nanofiber plate (CNFP) which is constructed from bio-based CNF and ready to replace the plastic in many fields.

Timing of immune response to COVID-19 may contribute to disease severity
A new USC study suggests that temporarily suppressing the body's immune system during the early stages of COVID-19 could help a patient avoid severe symptoms.

Cancer patients face high mortality from COVID-19
People with cancer who develop COVID-19 are much more likely to die from the disease than those without cancer, according to physician-researchers at Montefiore Health System and Albert Einstein College of Medicine.

Rubies on sapphire: Recipe for making crystals in flux
The effect of the holding temperature and solubility curve of rubies was elucidated, for Al2O3:Cr in MoO3 from 1050 to 1200.

Understanding the initial immune response after dengue virus infection
This study sheds new light on the body's initial response to dengue virus infection, describing the molecular diversity and specificity of the antibody response.

Coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 infects cells of the intestine
Researchers from the Hubrecht Institute in Utrecht, Erasmus MC University Medical Center Rotterdam, and Maastricht University have found that the coronavirus SARS-CoV-2, which causes COVID-19, can infect the cells of the intestine and multiply there.

Red light for stress
Researchers from the Institute of Industrial Science at The University of Tokyo have created a biphasic luminescent material that changes color when exposed to mechanical stress.

During tough times, ancient 'tourists' sought solace in Florida oyster feasts
More than a thousand years ago, people from across the Southeast regularly traveled to a small island on Florida's Gulf Coast to bond over oysters, likely as a means of coping with climate change and social upheaval.

Interference cancellation with high precision, high speed and low computational complexity
Toyohashi University of Technology has developed a self-interference cancellation filter that is indispensable for the realization of in-band full duplex using the same frequency to transmit and receive simultaneously in wireless communications.

Nanostimulators boost stem cells for muscle repair
In regenerative medicine, an ideal treatment for patients whose muscles are damaged from lack of oxygen would be to invigorate them with an injection of their own stem cells.

Parkinson's dyskinesia mechanism explained
The mechanism underlying Parkinson's dyskinesia has been unknown, until now.

New toolkit provides rapid implementation guide for adopting telemedicine during COVID-19
A urology group in North Carolina developed a guide that enabled them to convert all in-person visits to telemedicine in three days.

For people with diabetes and COVID-19, blood sugar control is key
A study reported in the journal Cell Metabolism on April 30 adds to the evidence that people with type 2 diabetes (T2D) are at greater risk of a poor outcome should they become infected with the virus that causes COVID-19.

Family history misses identifying individuals with high genetic risk of CVD or cancer
Certain genetic changes, termed 'pathogenic variants,' substantially increase risk for cardiovascular disease and cancer--the leading causes of death -- but testing to identify individual carriers is not part of current clinical practice.

New self-forming membrane to protect our environment
A new class of self-forming membrane has been developed by researchers from Newcastle University, UK.

Defects in the 'Swiss-army knife' of gene expression may contribute to neuronal diseases like Alzheimer's
When the master regulator of protein production malfunctions, it may contribute to the development of neuronal diseases such as Alzheimer's and Huntington's.

Contact tracing assessment of COVID-19 transmission dynamics in Taiwan
This study delineates the transmission dynamics of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) and evaluates the transmission risk at different exposure window periods before and after symptom onset.

LSU Health study suggests nicotine exposure alone leads to pulmonary hypertension
A study conducted at LSU Health New Orleans has shown for the first time that chronic exposure to inhaled nicotine alone increases blood pressure in both the body's general circulation and in the lungs that can lead to pulmonary hypertension.

Real-time observation of enzymatic processes on DNA
DNA strand breaks can contribute to the development of cancer and the ageing process.

Army researchers see path to quantum computing at room temperature
Army researchers predict quantum computer circuits that will no longer need extremely cold temperatures to function could become a reality after about a decade.

Ocean acidification prediction now possible years in advance
CU Boulder researchers have developed a method that could enable scientists to accurately forecast ocean acidity up to five years in advance.

Half of UK rice breaches limits on arsenic for children, warn scientists
Scientists have called for labelling to warn the public about levels of arsenic in rice, after their research found half of rice varieties studied exceeded maximum limits on the deadly toxin.

Study finds natural fires help native bees, improve food security
Native bees that boost food crops are in decline but changing fire management policies could help them.

Window to another world: Life is bubbling up to seafloor with petroleum from deep below
Microbial life is bubbling up to the ocean floor along with fluids from deeply buried petroleum reservoirs, reports a team of scientists from the University of Calgary and the Marine Biological Laboratory, Woods Hole.

Researchers develop 'piggyback' method to improve drug delivery of RNA therapeutics
A group of researchers from University of Toronto Engineering and SickKids Hospital have developed a new way to deliver molecules that target specific genes within cells.

Researchers identify unique glucose-sensing neurons that regulate blood sugar
At Baylor College of Medicine and other institutions, researchers have identified a group of unique glucose-sensing neurons in the brain and how they work together to prevent severe hypoglycemia in mice.

New targets for childhood brain tumors identified
People with the genetic condition neurofibromatosis type 1 (NF1) are prone to developing tumors on nervous system tissue.

Schizophrenia drug combined with radiation shows promise in treating deadly brain tumors
UCLA researchers found adding a drug once commonly used to treat schizophrenia to traditional radiation therapy helped improve overall survival in mice with glioblastoma.

New study examines which galaxies are best for intelligent life
Giant elliptical galaxies are not as likely as disk-shaped galaxies, such as our own Milky Way, to be cradles of technological civilizations, according to a recent paper by a University of Arkansas astrophysicist.

How franchisors can use contract ambiguity to their advantage
Contract terms that are ambiguous in relation to the franchisor's obligations enhance collaboration, minimize franchisee-initiated litigation, and enhance franchisor financial performance.

Infectious disease modeling study casts doubt on impact of Justinianic plague
Many historians have claimed the Justinianic Plague (c. 541-750 CE) killed half of the population of Byzantine (Eastern Roman) Empire.

Chinese scientists uncover structural basis for SARS-CoV-2 inhibition by Remdesivir
A team of Chinese scientists have reported the high-resolution cryo-EM structure of Remdesivir-bound RNA replicase complex from SARS-CoV-2, the infective virus of COVID-19.

Stopping deforestation: lessons from Colombia
A study of deforestation in Colombia by researchers from The University of Queensland has revealed some valuable insights which could be used to help slow deforestation in areas around the globe.

Certain scores may predict which trauma patients face high risk of multiple infections
A team at Massachusetts General Hospital has found that certain scores already used to assess the severity of a trauma patient's condition can provide clues to their risk for multiple infections.

Exploiting a chink in the armor of bacteria could result in new drug therapies
Scientists have identified a key process in the way bacteria protect themselves from attack -- and it heralds a new strategy in the hunt for antibiotics.

UniSA research uncovers treatment combo that sees smokers six times more likely to quit
New research led by the University of South Australia has found that smokers who receive the medication varenicline tartrate combined with Quitline counselling following a period of hospitalisation due to a tobacco-related illness are six times more likely to quit smoking than those who attempt to stop without support.

Twisting 2D materials uncovers their superpowers
Researchers can now grow twistronic material at sizes large enough to be useful.

Children in rural communities at risk for poor lawnmower injury outcomes
Children in rural communities are 1.7 times more likely to undergo an amputation after a lawnmower injury than children in urban communities, according to a new study by researchers at Children's Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP).

Rheumatoid arthritis patients on medicare seeing increased costs for specialty medications
After a sharp drop in out-of-pocket costs between 2010 and 2011, Medicare patients who use specialty biologic medications for rheumatoid arthritis have seen higher out-of-pocket spending for those same drugs because of gradual price increases, a new study in the Journal of the American Medical Association Open finds.

Long-lasting, low toxicity antimicrobial peptide fights 'superbug' lung infections
Through serendipity, researchers considerably reduced the toxicity of a potential antibiotic against the most feared drug-resistant bacteria, while also improving its stability in fighting infections.

DNA damage and faulty repair jointly cause mutations
By analysing genomic data from worms, scientists detailed how mutations are caused by a combination of DNA damage and inaccurate repair.

Cytokine storms and T cell counts may offer clues on how to treat COVID-19
Researchers in China found that patients with COVID-19 had significantly low T cell counts, along with a high concentration of cytokines.

Hidden symmetry found in chemical kinetic equations
Rice University researchers have discovered a hidden symmetry in the chemical kinetic equations scientists have long used to model and study many of the chemical processes essential for life.

Boosting levels of good fats with an experimental drug that acts on two newly characterized genes
A team of scientists have identified two genes that can regulate levels of healthy fats, called FAHFAs, in mice.

Aromatherapy may reduce nurses' stress, WVU researcher suggests
New research led by Marian Reven, a Ph.D. student in the West Virginia University School of Nursing, suggests that aromatherapy may reduce nurses' on-the-job feelings of stress, anxiety, exhaustion and being overwhelmed.

Study finds high blood pressure medications safe for patients with COVID-19 disease
Despite concerns expressed by some experts, common high blood pressure drugs did not increase the risk of contracting COVID-19 -- or of developing severe disease -- in a study of 12,594 patients.

Hydroxychloroquine linked to increased risk of cardiac arrhythmias
In a brief report published today in JAMA Cardiology, a team of pharmacists and clinicians at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC), part of Beth Israel Lahey Health, found evidence suggesting that patients who received hydroxychloroquine for COVID-19 were at increased risk of electrical changes to the heart and cardiac arrhythmias.

First direct look at how light excites electrons to kick off a chemical reaction
The first step in many light-driven chemical reactions, like the ones that power photosynthesis and human vision, is a shift in the arrangement of a molecule's electrons as they absorb the light's energy.

Emergence of deadly honey bee disease revealed
Honey bee colonies from across the UK are increasingly suffering from a viral disease, a new study has shown.

Characterizing two sisters, examples of exceptional longevity
A new study provides a detailed characterization of two sisters -- one a supercentenarian and one a semi-supercentenarian -- aimed at providing new insights into what allowed them to live such long lives.

Assessment of QT intervals in case series of patients with COVID-19 treated with hydroxychloroquine alone or in combination with azithromycin
Case series assesses QT intervals for French patients with coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) treated with hydroxychloroquine alone or in combination with azithromycin.
Brightsurf.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.