Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

May 11, 2020
Microalgae food for honey bees
A microscopic algae ('microalgae') could provide a complete and sustainably sourced supplemental diet to boost the robustness of managed honey bees, according to research just published by Agricultural Research Service scientists in the journal Apidologie.

Predictive models could provide more accurate detection of early-stage Parkinson's disease
neuroscientists at York University have found five different models that use these types of non-motor clinical as well as biological variables to more accurately predict early-stage Parkinson's disease.

Penn State and NAGP identify and reconstitute two lost Holstein lines
more than 99 percent of Holstein bulls born using artificial insemination in the last decade trace their male lineage to just two bulls born in the 1960s.

Use of a homozygous G608G progeria mouse model for degenerative joint diseases research
In a study published today in the journal Proceedings of the National Academies of Science, researchers led by Ara Nazarian, PhD, a principal investigator in the Center for Advanced Orthopaedic Studies at BIDMC, investigated the musculoskeletal phenotype of the homozygous G608G BAC-transgenic progeria mouse model, developed at Dr.

Unraveling the magnetism of a graphene triangular flake
Graphene is a diamagnetic material, this is, unable of becoming magnetic.

A century of misunderstanding of a key tool in the economics of natural resources
In the past few weeks, oil prices have fallen to record lows.

Mathematics to keep farmers on track
Tokyo University of Agriculture and Technology researchers use numerical simulations and frequency response analysis to model the stability of tractors on rough terrain, which may increase farmer safety and promote the automation of agriculture.

El Niño-linked decreases in soil moisture could trigger massive tropical-plant die offs
New research has found that El Niño events are often associated with droughts in some of the world's more vulnerable tropical regions.

New evidence shows giant meteorite impacts formed parts of the Moon's crust
New research on a rock collected by the Apollo 17 astronauts has revealed evidence for a mineral phase that can only form above 2300 °C.

GCS centres support research to mitigate impact of COVID-19 pandemic
The Gauss Centre for Supercomputing has fast-tracked access to its high-performance computing resources to help mitigate the COVID-19 pandemic.

Earlier gestational diabetes diagnosis, less weight gain
A new study has shown that initiating screening for gestational diabetes in high-risk women in the first trimester of pregnancy instead of the second trimester, allowing for treatment to start earlier, can help optimize gestational weight gain.

Moisture-sucking gels give solar panels the chills
Polymers that absorb water from the atmosphere can make it easier to run photovoltaic devices in hot climates.

Sex, genes and vulnerability
Study offers molecular explanation for long-standing observation that certain diseases occur more often or more severely in different sexes.

COVID-19 lockdowns significantly impacting global air quality
Levels of two major air pollutants have been drastically reduced since lockdowns began in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, but a secondary pollutant -- ground-level ozone -- has increased in China, according to new research.

Researchers ID target for colorectal cancer immunotherapy
Researchers at the Indiana University Melvin and Bren Simon Comprehensive Cancer Center have identified a target for colorectal cancer immunotherapy.

Street smarts required in heat mitigation
Arizona State University researcher Ariane Middel and her colleagues investigated how solar reflective coatings on select Los Angeles city streets affected radiant heat and, in turn, pedestrians' comfort on a typical summer day.

UMBC gaming researchers develop a new way to render characters with realistic skin
Researchers at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC) have developed a new solution to render an essential detail in many video games: human skin.

Material manufacturing from particles takes a giant step forward
Tiny fibrils extracted from plants have been getting a lot of attention for their strength.

ACR releases gout management guideline
Today, the American College of Rheumatology (ACR) released the 2020 Guideline for the Management of Gout.

Bumble bee disease, reproduction shaped by flowering strip plants
Flowering strips -- plants used to augment bee foraging habitats -- can help increase bee reproduction but may also increase pathogen infection rates.

Study shows connection between the ancestry & the molecular makeup of cancer
A new paper by researchers from the NCI Cancer Genome Analysis Network, a collaborative group with investigators in the US, Canada and Europe, provides the most comprehensive look to date at the effect of ancestry on the molecular makeup of normal and cancerous tissues.

Belt and Road's financiers fall short on biodiversity
Most financiers of international infrastructure program, the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), are falling short on biodiversity safeguards, according to University of Queensland research.

Towards a new generation of vegetation models
Plants and vegetation play a critical role in supporting life on Earth, but there is still a lot of uncertainty in our understanding of how exactly they affect the global carbon cycle and ecosystem services.

University of Toledo scientists discover new targets for preventing damage from viral infections
When the body faces stressful conditions such as high temperatures or lack of nutrients, cells produce the same large structures they make to combat virus infections.

COVID-19, digital technologies, and the future of disease surveillance
Several data-driven epidemiological approaches that have been proposed or trialed for COVID-19 are justified if implemented through transparent processes that involve oversight, write Michelle M.

Who takes the temperature in our cells?
The conditions in the environment are subject to large fluctuations.

COVID-19 places added prenatal stress on mother and child that could have lasting impact
An international consortium of researchers have identified particular sources of prenatal stress, as experienced by mothers, that have a direct effect on a child's subsequent mental health.

Children face risk for severe complications and death from COVID-19
Children, teens and young adults are at greater risk for severe complications from COVID-19 than previously thought and those with underlying health conditions are at even greater risk, according to a study coauthored by a Rutgers researcher.

Multitasking in the workplace can lead to negative emotions
From writing papers to answering emails, it's common for office workers to juggle multiple tasks at once.

New AI diagnostic can predict COVID-19 without testing
Researchers at King's College London, Massachusetts General Hospital and health science company ZOE have developed an artificial intelligence diagnostic that can predict whether someone is likely to have COVID-19 based on their symptoms.

Artificial synapses on design
Memristive devices behave similarly to neurons in the brain. Researchers from the Jülich Aachen Research Alliance (JARA) and the technology group Heraeus have now discovered how to systematically control the functional behaviour of these elements.

Development of effective COVID-19 vaccines will require unprecedented collaboration
A diversity of vaccine approaches, not a single SARS-CoV-2 vaccine or vaccine platform, must be pursued to meet the global need to protect from the continued threat of the SARS-CoV-2 virus, write Lawrence Corey, John R.

Research shows even animals benefit from social distance to prevent disease
Microorganisms living inside and on our body play a crucial role in both the maintenance of our health and the development of disease.

New technique uses radar to gauge methane release from Arctic lakes
A University of Alaska Fairbanks-led research team has developed a way to use satellite images to determine the amount of methane being released from northern lakes, a technique that could help climate change modelers better account for this potent greenhouse gas.

Antihistamines may help patients with malignant melanoma
Can a very common allergy medicine improve survival among patients suffering from the serious skin cancer, malignant melanoma?

New test identifies lobster hybrids
Scientists have developed a test that can identify hybrids resulting from crossbreeding between European and American lobsters.

A close relative of SARS-CoV-2 found in bats offers more evidence it evolved naturally
On May 10 in the journal Current Biology, researchers describe a recently identified bat coronavirus that contains insertions of amino acids at the junction of the S1 and S2 subunits of the virus's spike protein in a manner similar to SAR-CoV-2.

Study suggests polymer composite could serve as lighter, non-toxic radiation shielding
A new study suggests that a polymer compound embedded with bismuth trioxide particles holds tremendous potential for replacing conventional radiation shielding materials, such as lead.

Experimental two-in-one shot may give diabetics a better way to control their blood sugar
Amylin plays a synergistic role with insulin to control blood sugar levels after eating in a way that is more effective than insulin alone and mimics what occurs naturally with a meal.

Change of direction in immune defense: Frankincense reprograms inflammatory enzyme
A research team from the Friedrich Schiller University of Jena (Germany) and Louisiana State University has clarified the molecular mechanism behind the anti-inflammatory effect of a natural product from frankincense resin.

NIST scientists create new recipe for single-atom transistors
Researchers at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) and their colleagues at the University of Maryland have developed a step-by-step recipe to produce single-atom transistors.

UCLA scientists create first roadmap of human skeletal muscle development
An interdisciplinary team of researchers at the Eli and Edythe Broad Center for Regenerative Medicine and Stem Cell Research at UCLA has developed a first-of-its-kind roadmap of how human skeletal muscle develops, including the formation of muscle stem cells.

FreshDirect depot brings increased traffic to South Bronx
The 2018 opening of the FreshDirect warehouse in Mott Haven, Bronx, significantly increased truck and vehicle flow within that neighborhood, according to a study led by scientists at Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health.

NIH experts: Coordinated strategy to accelerate COVID-19 vaccine candidates is key
A harmonized and collaborative approach to the clinical testing, scale-up and distribution of candidate vaccines to prevent COVID-19 is essential, scientific leaders write in a perspective published today in Science.

Breaking down wood decomposition by fungi
Through a combination of lab and field experiments, researchers have developed a better understanding of the factors accounting for different wood decomposition rates among fungi.

Flying foxes in SA exposed to zoonotic viruses
University of Adelaide researchers have found that South Australia's population of Grey-headed flying foxes, which took up residence in 2010, has been exposed to a number of viruses, including Hendra virus that can be transmitted to humans via horses.

Why some people are more prone to anxiety
Anxiety-prone people can blame serotonin cleanup proteins gone awry in their amygdala, according to research in marmosets recently published in JNeurosci.

Insulins available at US pharmacies are consistent with product labeling
Funding partners JDRF, the American Diabetes Association (ADA), and The Leona M. and Harry B.

UCLA and Carnegie Mellon researchers develop real-time physics engine for soft robotics
Collaborators from the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) and Carnegie Mellon University have adapted sophisticated computer graphics technology, used to create hair and fabric in animated films, to simulate the movements of soft, limbed robots for the first time.

New HIV vaccine combination strategy provides better and more durable protection
Emory researchers and their colleagues have shown a new HIV vaccine is better at preventing infection and lasts longer.

Eurovision voting points to more than just musical tastes
Although this year's Eurovision Song Contest has been postponed due to the COVID-19 outbreak, academics from the University of Stirling and University of Glasgow have revealed interesting patterns from previous years' public votes.

Single-cell RNA seq developed to accurately quantify cell-specific drug effects in pancreatic islets
Researchers from Kubicek's and Bock's groups at CeMM have developed a method to accurately assess the effect of specific drugs in isolated pancreatic tissue by using a refined single-cell RNA sequencing method.

New optical biosensor system may help round-the-clock management of gout
In a recent article published in the February issue of the journal sensors, researchers at Texas A&M University have reported a technology that might help people with gout disease monitor their symptoms better.

Insulin resistance contributes to racial disparities in breast cancer prognosis in US women, Mount Sinai researchers reveal
New study identifies that differences in insulin resistance can explain in part the disparities in breast cancer survival between black and white women.

Copper ion unlocks magnesium's potential in next-generation battery
Researchers at the Qingdao Institute of Bioenergy and Bioprocess Technology (QIBEBT) of the Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS) have come a step closer to making a viable, high-output battery based on magnesium (Mg), an element the United States Geological Survey reports is far more abundant than lithium.

Leap forward in the discovery and development of new antibiotics
A powerful new insight, linked to recent studies by Monash Biomedicine Discovery Institute (BDI), has provided a new understanding of Glycopeptide antibiotics (GPAs) biosynthesis that allows new GPAs to be made and tested in the laboratory.

Researchers turn algae leftovers into renewable products with flare
Researchers take waste products from algae-based omega-3 oil production and convert them into valuable and renewable polyurethane foams with a range of of commercial applications -- from flip-flops and running shoe soles to mattresses and yoga mats.

A 'consciousness conductor' synchronizes and connects mouse brain areas
New research from the RIKEN Center for Brain Science (CBS) shows that slow-wave brain activity, a characteristic of sleep and resting states, is controlled by the claustrum.

Soft robotic exosuit makes stroke survivors walk faster and farther
Using an untethered version of their soft exosuit that carries its own battery and motor, Harvard and Boston University researchers showed in a cohort of six post-stroke survivors with hemiparesis that their device could significantly increase individuals' walking speed by an average 0.14 meters per second.

Blood test a potential new tool for controlling infections
A new technique could provide vital information about a community's immunity to infectious diseases including malaria and COVID-19.

Solve invasive seaweed problem by turning it into biofuels and fertilisers
UK researchers have developed a cheap and simple way of creating biofuel and fertiliser from seaweed, whilst removing plastic from the oceans and cleaning up tourist beaches in the Caribbean and Central America.

How handling meat leads to psychological numbness
Butchers and deli workers become desensitised to handling meat within the first two years of handling it as part of their job say psychologists.

Brief intervention could keep lower-risk drug use from becoming riskier: BU study
A new pilot randomized trial by researchers from the Boston University School of Public Health (BUSPH) and School of Medicine (BUSM) and Boston Medical Center (BMC) finds that a brief intervention for people with lower-risk drug use may help prevent increased and riskier use, as well as other health issues.

How to boost plant biomass: Biologists uncover molecular link between nutrient availability, growth
In a new study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS), plant genomic scientists at New York University's Center for Genomics & Systems Biology discovered the missing piece in the molecular link between a plant's perception of the nitrogen dose in its environment and the dose-responsive changes in its biomass.

Telehealth during COVID-19 may lead to better outcomes for diabetes patients
A new study has shown that for some patients with type 1 diabetes the close monitoring of their condition using telehealth protocols combined with appropriate technology may lead to better care during the COVID-19 pandemic, when patients are avoiding in-person visits.

Are our brains hard-wired for longing?
A new brain imaging study of prairie voles -- which are among only about 5% of mammalian species besides humans who are monogamous -- found that when it comes to forming bonds, longing may be as important as being together.

The microbiome controls immune system fitness
Working alongside colleagues in Mainz, Bern, Hannover and Bonn, researchers from Charité -- Universitätsmedizin Berlin, the Berlin Institute of Health (BIH) and the German Rheumatism Research Center Berlin (DRFZ) were able to show how the microbiome helps to render the immune system capable of responding to pathogens.

Use of PrEP for HIV prevention among at-risk teens in US
Nearly 60 articles were reviewed to assess the rate of preexposure prophylaxis (PrEP) use for HIV prevention among at-risk teens in the United States and to provide recommendations for how to improve access to and use of PrEP.

Outcomes of children with COVID-19 admitted to US, Canadian pediatric ICUs
Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) infection in North American pediatric intensive care units is described in this observational study, including how it presented, whether there were comorbidities, the severity of disease, therapeutic interventions, clinical trajectory and early outcomes.

Water loss in northern peatlands threatens to intensify fires, global warming
A group of 59 international scientists, led by researchers at Canada's McMaster University, has uncovered new information about the distinct effects of climate change on boreal forests and peatlands, which threaten to worsen wildfires and accelerate global warming.

Temple finds link between blood vessel inflammation, malfunctioning cellular powerhouses
In new research, scientists at the Lewis Katz School of Medicine at Temple University have uncovered a novel mechanism by which abnormalities in mitochondrial fission in endothelial cells contribute to inflammation and oxidative stress in the cardiovascular system.

Loss of green space in India shown to be associated with higher cardiometabolic risk
Study is one of the first to analyse the relationship between urban development and health in a low- or middle-income country.

Effects of antioxidant rich Indo-Mediterranean foods on pre-heart failure
This study aimed to examine the effects of functional foods, omega-3 fatty acids and flavonoid-rich diets in patients with a high risk of Cardiovascular Diseases (CVDs) with reference to Heart Failure (HF).

The oldest Upper Paleolithic Homo sapiens in Europe
A research team reports new Homo sapiens fossils from Bacho Kiro Cave, Bulgaria, that are directly dated to approximately 45,000 years ago and are in direct association with stone tools, the remains of hunted animals, bone tools, and personal ornaments.

Young migrants at risk of mental illness
Experience of trauma, abuse and poverty puts the mental health of many young refugees at risk.

The big picture: A new imaging approach to see multiple proteins simultaneously
Researchers from Daegu Gyeongbuk Institute of Science and Technology(DGIST) have developed an innovative method that allows them to visualize up to tens of different proteins simultaneously in the same cell.

Are more head impacts during NFL career associated with increased risk of death?
Nearly 14,000 current and former National Football League (NFL) players were included in an observational study that examined whether a greater amount of repeated head impacts throughout a professional football career were associated with increased risk of death.

New research determines our species created earliest modern artifacts in Europe
Blade-like tools and animal tooth pendants previously discovered in Europe, and once thought to possibly be the work of Neanderthals, are in fact the creation of Homo sapiens, or modern humans, who emigrated from Africa, finds a new analysis by an international team of researchers.

One-size-fits-all approach doesn't work for treating hypertension in pregnancy
Treatment guidelines for hypertension in pregnancy suggest that more women should be on medication to control their blood pressure.

World-first saliva test detects hidden throat cancer
A series of saliva HPV tests detected an asymptomatic throat cancer during a trial of a new saliva diagnostic.

Opportunities from COVID-19 pandemic for transforming psychiatric care with telehealth
Ways in which mental health care might change as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic are described.

New HIV vaccine strategy strengthens, lengthens immunity in primates
Investigators at the Stanford University School of Medicine and several other institutions have shown that a new type of vaccination can substantially enhance and sustain protection from HIV.

Exploring the impacts of climate change on hydropower production
A new study by researchers from IIASA and China investigated the impacts of different levels of global warming on hydropower potential and found that this type of electricity generation benefits more from a 1.5°C than a 2°C climate scenario.

Researchers develop new drugs for treating polycystic hepatorena
These new drugs are capable of blocking the growth of hepatic and renal cysts in experimental models of polycystic hepatorenal disease.

Fred Hutch, NIH experts outline plan for COVID-19 vaccines
In a perspective published online May 11 by the journal Science, Fred Hutch's Dr.

Study finds rising rate of mental health visits among youth to emergency departments
While the number of pediatric emergency department (ED) visits across the nation has remained stable over the last 10 years, visits for mental health disorders have risen 60% and the rate of visits for deliberate self-harm have increased 329%.

Effect on quality of life of watching Disney movies during chemotherapy
In this randomized clinical trial, researchers assessed the effect on measures of quality of life among women who watched Disney movies during chemotherapy for gynecologic cancer.

New dataset helps tomato growers reduce spread of bacterial canker
A group of plant pathologists, primarily based at the University of California, Davis, became interested in studying Clavibacter when extension agents brought in diseased samples.

Medicinal plants thrive in biodiversity hotspots
Scientists from Leipzig have shown a way to considerably simplify this search for bioactive natural compounds using data analyses on the phylogenetic relationships, spatial distribution and secondary metabolites of plants.

Future information technologies: 3D quantum spin liquid revealed
Quantum Spin Liquids are candidates for potential use in future information technologies.

Imaging reveals bowel abnormalities in patients with COVID-19
Patients with COVID-19 can have bowel abnormalities, including ischemia, according to a new study published today in the journal Radiology.

Emotional well-being while home gardening similar to other popular activities, study finds
Princeton researchers found that gardening at home had a similar effect on emotional well-being (or happiness) as biking, walking or dining out.

Hayabusa2 reveals more secrets from Ryugu
In February and July of 2019, the Hayabusa2 spacecraft briefly touched down on the surface of near-Earth asteroid Ryugu.

New Massachusetts poll: COVID-19 dominates views on politics, daily life
The COVID-19 pandemic dominates views of government, politics and virtually all aspects of daily life, according to a new poll of Massachusetts voters that looks at opinions on issues, politics and public figures.

Exploring why some COVID-19 patients lose their sense of smell
Doctors have reported that partial or total loss of the sense of smell is often an early symptom of infection with SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19.

Even before COVID-19, many adults over 50 lacked stable food supply
Even before the coronavirus pandemic wreaked havoc with the nation's food supply and economy, one in seven adults between the ages of 50 and 80 already had trouble getting enough food because of cost or other issues, a new poll finds.

Outcomes of rapid virtualization of psychiatric care
Questions about how the COVID-19 pandemic will alter telepsychiatry practice are examined in this article.

Telehealth tools developed for Ebola improve COVID-19 care
The telemedicine tools are allowing doctors to provide personal, high-quality care while conserving vital personal protective equipment and reducing infection risks.

SwRI scientist modeled Mars climate to understand habitability
A Southwest Research Institute scientist modeled the atmosphere of Mars to help determine that salty pockets of water present on the Red Planet are likely not habitable by life as we know it on Earth.

COPD and smoking associated with higher COVID-19 mortality
Current smokers and people with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) have an increased risk of severe complications and higher mortality with COVID-19 infection, according to a new study published May 11, 2020 in the open-access journal PLOS ONE by Jaber Alqahtani of University College London, UK, and colleagues.

Peptides that can be taken as a pill
Peptides represent a billion-dollar market in the pharmaceutical industry, but they can generally only be taken as injections to avoid degradation by stomach enzymes.

'Data clouds fusion' helps robots work as a team in hazardous situations
A group of researchers and engineers has created a new way for robots to pool data gathered in real time, allowing them to 'think' collectively and navigate their way through difficult, previously unmapped obstacles as a team.

Defective graphene has high electrocatalytic activity
Russian scientists have conducted a theoretical study of the effects of defects in graphene on electron transfer at the graphene-solution interface.

Simple molecular reagents to treat Alzheimer's disease
Sometimes the most complex problems actually have very simple solutions.

Emergency departments slow to adopt proven opioid use disorder therapy
A new study by Yale researchers looking at nearly 400 clinicians at four urban academic emergency departments found that, despite scientific evidence supporting the benefits of buprenorphine for opioid use disorder, just 21% of emergency department clinicians indicated readiness to offer it to patients in need.

Scientists reveal solar system's oldest molecular fluids could hold the key to early life
Scientists from the Royal Ontario Museum have analysed a meteorite atom by atom to reveal the chemistry and acidity of the earliest fluids in the solar system.

Waiting game: testing the patience of predators and prey
A new report from Kyoto University shows that freezing in action when a snake and frog face off is not about fear but rather a delicate waiting game of patience, with each animal waiting for and anticipating its opponent's actions.

Chameleon materials: The origin of color variation in low-dimensional perovskites
Some light-emitting diodes (LEDs) created from perovskite, a class of optoelectronic materials, emit light over a broad wavelength range.

How to tune out common odors and focus on important ones
Quantitative biologists at CSHL have figured out how a fly brain learns to ignore overwhelmingly prevalent, mundane odors to focus on more important ones.

Early mammography screening lowers risk of developing fatal breast cancer
An analysis published in CANCER of more than half a million women in Sweden reveals that mammography screening reduces the rates of advanced and fatal breast cancers.

Healthy eating behaviors in childhood may reduce the risk of adult obesity and heart disease
Encouraging children to make their own decisions about food, within a structured environment focused on healthy food choices, has been linked to better childhood nutrition and healthier lifelong eating behaviors.

Stresses and flows in ultra-cold superfluids
Yvan Buggy and his co-workers at Heriot-Watt University in Edinburgh, Scotland, have developed a mathematical model of the flow of ultra-cold lsuperfluids, showing how they deform when they encounter impurities.

Chemical evidence of dairying by hunter-gatherers in Lesotho in the first millennium AD
After analyzing organic residues from ancient pots, a team of scientists led by the University of Bristol has uncovered new evidence of dairying by hunter-gatherers in the landlocked South African country of Lesotho in the mid-late first millennium AD.

How is Covid-19 affecting the global economic order?
Supply chains collapse, companies are facing bankruptcy, and mass unemployment ensues.

Using self-nudging to make better choices
A behavioral science technique to improve self-control.

Photosynthesis in a droplet
Researchers develop an artificial chloroplast.

On the road to non-toxic and stable perovskite solar cells
The promising halide perovskite materials for solar energy conversion show high efficiencies, but this comes at a cost: The best perovskite materials incorporate toxic lead which poses a hazard to the environment.
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