Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

July 02, 2020
Crystal structure discovered almost 200 years ago could hold key to solar cell revolution
Solar energy researchers are shining their scientific spotlight on materials with a crystal structure discovered nearly two centuries ago.

Apgar score effective in assessing health of preterm infants
The vitality of preterm infants should be assessed with an Apgar score, a tool used to measure the health of newborns immediately after birth.

Gender gaps in STEM college majors emerge in high school
Although studies have shown that women are more likely than men to enter and complete college in U.S. higher education, women are less likely to earn degrees in science, technology, engineering and math fields.

Hot flushes and night sweats linked to 70% increase in cardiovascular disease
New research from The University of Queensland has found that women who have hot flushes and night sweats after menopause are 70 per cent more likely to have heart attacks, angina and strokes.

Decontamination methods for reuse of filtering facepiece respirators
Studies describing various methods of decontamination to allow safe reuse of N95 respirators are summarized in this article.

New algorithm for personalized models of human cardiac electrophysiology
Researchers from the Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology, Kazan Federal University, and George Washington University have proposed an algorithm for producing patient-specific mathematical models describing the electrical excitation of human heart cells.

Stemming the spread of misinformation on social media
New research reported in the journal Psychological Science finds that priming people to think about accuracy could make them more discerning in what they subsequently share on social media.

New sequencing technology will help scientists decipher disease mechanisms
New technologies capable of sequencing single molecules in fine detail will help scientists better understand the mechanisms of rare nucleotides thought to play an important role in the progression of some diseases.

Study: Crowdsourced data could help map urban food deserts
New research from The University of Texas at Dallas suggests food deserts might be more prevalent in the U.S. than the numbers reported in government estimates.

Prospective teachers misperceive Black children as angry
Prospective teachers appear more likely to misperceive Black children as angry than white children, which may undermine the education of Black youth, according to new research published by the American Psychological Association.

Mobile clinics can help address health care needs of Latino farmworkers
A University of California, Riverside, study that sought to determine barriers to health care among Spanish-speaking Latino farmworkers in rural communities has devised an innovative health care service delivery model that addresses many challenges these communities face: mobile health clinics that bring health care services to patients in their community spaces.

The protein that stands between us and autoimmunity
Researchers from Osaka University identified the epigenetic proteins Tet2 and Tet3 as key regulators of B cell function.

Number of HIV-1 founder variants determined by source partner infection
For people infected by HIV in the subset of cases involving several variants of the virus, and for which disease progression is usually faster, a new modeling study suggests the number of infection-initiating viral variants is primarily determined by how long the source partner has been infected.

Research reflects how AI sees through the looking glass
Intrigued by how reflection changes images in subtle and not-so-subtle ways, a team of Cornell University researchers used artificial intelligence to investigate what sets originals apart from their reflections.

Coronavirus damages the endocrine system
People with endocrine disorders may see their condition worsen as a result of COVID-19, according to a new review published in the Journal of the Endocrine Society.

How old is your dog in human years? Scientists develop better method than 'multiply by 7'
By mapping molecular changes in the genome over time, UC San Diego researchers developed a formula to more accurately compare dog age to human age -- a tool that could also help them evaluate how well anti-aging products work.

In mouse study, black raspberries show promise for reducing skin inflammation
In a study done with mice and published earlier this month in the journal Nutrients, researchers found that a diet high in black raspberries reduced inflammation from contact hypersensitivity -- a condition that causes redness and inflammation in the skin.

Science fiction becomes fact -- Teleportation helps to create live musical performance
A new study by the University of Plymouth explains for the first time how quantum supercomputers could be helpful in the world of making and performing music

Mothering in domestic violence: Protecting children behind closed doors
As emerging data shows an alarming rise of domestic violence during the pandemic, researchers at the University of South Australia are urging practitioners to look beyond clinical observations and focus on the strengths that mothers exercise to protect their children from domestic abuse.

Climate change threat to tropical plants
Half of the world's tropical plant species may struggle to germinate by 2070 because of global warming, a new UNSW study predicts.

States with highest income inequality experienced a larger number of COVID-19 deaths
States with the highest level of income inequality had a larger number of COVID-19-related deaths compared with states with lower income inequality.

Oropharyngeal secretions may help reduce false negative COVID-19 test results
A new study published in the Journal of Dental Research demonstrates that testing of oropharyngeal secretions may reduce the number of false negative results from nasal swab testing of patients who have seemingly recovered from the disease.

Study explains potential causes for 'happy hypoxia' condition in COVID-19 patients
A new research study provides possible explanations for COVID-19 patients who present with extremely low, otherwise life-threatening levels of oxygen, but no signs of dyspnea (difficulty breathing).

Stretching your legs may help prevent diseases such as heart diseases and diabetes
New research published today in The Journal of Physiology shows that 12 weeks of easy-to-administer passive stretching helps improve blood flow by making it easier for your arteries to dilate and decreasing their stiffness.

Patients may be exposed to hormone-disrupting chemicals in medication, medical supplies
Health care providers may unintentionally expose patients to endocrine- disrupting chemicals (EDCs) by prescribing certain medications and using medical supplies, according to a perspective published in the Endocrine Society's Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism.

How that preprint about a 'more contagious strain' of coronavirus changed in peer review
On May 5, 2020, news broke about a reportedly more contagious variant of SARS-CoV-2 based on a preprint posted to bioRxiv.

Typhoon changed earthquake patterns
Intensive erosion can temporarily change the earthquake activity (seismicity) of a region significantly.

Popular chemotherapy drug may be less effective in overweight and obese women
Breast cancer patients who are overweight or obese might benefit less from treatment with docetaxel, a common chemotherapy drug, than lean patients, a new study finds.

Social media and radiology -- The good, the bad, and the ugly
Radiologists examine social media and report #SoMe can be useful in education, research, mentoring and career development.

Moss protein corrects genetic defects of other plants
Almost all land plants employ an army of molecular editors who correct errors in their genetic information.

Ceftolozane/tazobactam: New treatment option for severe infections, but no proof of superiority
Ceftolozane/tazobactam: new treatment option for severe infections, but no proof of superiority New antibiotic broadens the treatment options for severe infections and resistances.

Global e-waste surging: Up 21% in 5 years
The UN's 3rd Global eWaste Monitor reports 53.6 million metric tonnes (Mt) of e-waste was produced last year -- substantially more than the weight of all adults in Europe.

Significant association between income and survival after surgery for lung cancer
Patients with low income have a higher risk of death following surgery for lung cancer compared with patients with high income.

How prison and police discrimination affect black sexual minority men's health
Incarceration and police discrimination may contribute to HIV, depression and anxiety among Black gay, bisexual and other sexual minority men, according to a Rutgers led study.

Anaplasmosis bacterium tinkers with tick's gene expression to spread to new hosts
For the first time, scientists have shown that the bacterium that causes the tick-borne disease anaplasmosis interferes with tick gene expression for its survival inside cells and to spread to a new vertebrate host.

Putting zinc on bread wheat leaves
Applying zinc to the leaves of bread wheat can increase wheat grain zinc concentrations and improve its nutritional content.

Early marriage may lead to unsafe drinking behavior by those with higher genetic risk
Getting married early in life may increase the risk of problematic drinking behavior among people who are genetically predisposed to drink more, according to a forthcoming study led by researchers at Virginia Commonwealth University.

UCLA study pinpoints new function for histones
Refuting earlier theories, scientists discovered that histones act as an enzyme that converts copper into a form that can be used by the cells.

Algae as living biocatalysts for a green industry
Many substances that we use every day only work in the right 3D structure.

Carbon-loving materials designed to reduce industrial emissions
Researchers at the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory and the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, are advancing gas membrane materials to expand practical technology options for reducing industrial carbon emissions.

New platform gauges effects of plastic nanoparticles on human development and health
A study released today in STEM CELLS outlines a new platform researchers designed that allowed them to investigate the potentially harmful effects of microplastics and nanoplastics.

Mini-'Marsquakes' measured by InSight lander show effects of sun and wind
Analysis of seismometer data from the InSight Martian lander revealed that different types and frequencies of ambient low-magnitude ''microtremors'' on Mars were associated with different sources, and some reflected daily variations in wind and solar irradiance, either in distant locations or near the lander.

Elderly people's response to COVID-19 not as expected
Survey results from 27 countries suggest that, despite their increased risk of severe illness due to COVID-19, elderly people are not more willing to isolate when asked to, and are not more compliant with several COVID-19 preventive measures.

Targeting deep areas of the skeletal muscles effectively alleviates postoperative pain
To address postoperative muscle pain in patients undergoing abdominal surgery, researchers developed a new method of effective pain control called needle electrical twitch obtaining intramuscular stimulation (NETOIMS).

Unlocking the key to an effective vaccine
A recent study by Monash University has looked at the role plasma cells and their longevity play in the effectiveness of vaccines in the body and suggests that components within vaccine design are the key.

Evolution of loss of smell or taste in COVID-19
This survey-based study examines the clinical course of the loss of sense of smell and taste in a case series of mildly symptomatic patients with SARS-CoV-2 infection.

Risk of ischemic stroke in patients with COVID-19 compared with influenza
This observational study compares the rate of ischemic stroke among patients with COVID-19 compared with influenza in two New York hospitals.

Fluorine enables separation-free 'chiral chromatographic analysis'
Researchers from the Shanghai Institute of Organic Chemistry of the Chinese Academy of Sciences recently developed a new platform for rapid chiral analysis, producing chromatogram-like output without the need for separation.

New Human Gene Therapy editorial: Concern following gene therapy adverse events
Response to the recent report of the deaths of two children receiving high doses of a gene therapy vector (AAV8) in a Phase I trial for X-linked myotubular myopathy (MTM).

Cryo-electron tomography reveals uromodulin's role in urinary tract infection protection
Free-flowing filaments of Uromodulin protect against urinary tract infections (UTIs) by duping potentially harmful bacteria to attach to their fishbone-like molecular architecture - rather than to sensitive urinary tract tissues - before being flushed out of the body during urination, researchers report.

Marijuana use while pregnant boosts risk of children's sleep problems
As many as 7% of moms-to-be use marijuana while pregnant, and that number is rising fast as more use it to quell morning sickness.

Researchers examine refugee children's academic, social, and emotional learning outcomes
Researchers at Global TIES for Children, an international research center based at NYU Abu Dhabi and NYU New York, examined a variety of post-migration risks faced by Syrian refugee children enrolled in Lebanese public schools and found that students being older than expected for the grade in which they were placed was most consistently and strongly associated with developmental and learning difficulties.

CNIO team develop a technology to improve effectiveness of stem cells in regenerative medicine
Stem cells have been holding great promise for regenerative medicine for years.

Marine alga from the Kiel Fjord discovered as a remedy against infections and skin cancer
Using state-of-the-art approaches coupled with bio- and cheminformatics and machine learning, researchers at the GEOMAR Helmholtz Centre for Ocean Research Kiel have succeeded in discovering new, bioactive components of the Baltic Sea Baltic Sea seaweed Fucus vesiculosus and its fungal symbiont against infectious bacteria or skin cancer.

"Targeting peptide" discovery offers hope as new, highly effective anti-inflammatory
A collaboration between the University of Toronto's Faculty of Dentistry and the National Jewish Health in Denver -- the top-ranked respiratory research hospital in the US -- has yielded a new drug discovery that could be useful to combat inflammation of all varieties and shows promise in fighting acute respiratory illnesses such as COVID-19.

New weapons for fighting Devil disease
Researchers at the University of Tasmania's Menzies Institute for Medical Research and the School of Medicine have added an arsenal of new tools (video link) to their repertoire for fighting the insidious Devil Facial Tumour Disease.

Timing of SNAP benefits can reduce childhood injuries
A recently published study shows that families that receive Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits later in the month have fewer ER visits, likely because they can afford to feed their families at the end of the calendar month when other resources run low.

Grassroots dog vaccinations can help stop rabies, but not alone
While scientists are trying to find a vaccine for COVID-19, the rabies virus continues to kill 59,000 people every year.

Thermophones offer new route to radically simplify array design, research shows
Scientists have pioneered a new technique to produce arrays of sound produced entirely by heat.

Call for immunology to return to the wild
In an article published today in Science, a multidisciplinary research team from more than 10 universities and research institutes outlines how integrating a more diverse set of species and environments could enhance the biomedical research cycle.

The lightest shielding material in the world
Empa researchers have succeeded in applying aerogels to microelectronics: Aerogels based on cellulose nanofibers can effectively shield electromagnetic radiation over a wide frequency range - and they are unrivalled in terms of weight.

National survey on COVID-19 pandemic shows significant mental health impact
The findings of a nationwide survey assessing the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on the emotional wellbeing of U.S. adults show 90 percent of survey respondents reported experiencing emotional distress related to the pandemic.

Abnormal proteins in the gut could contribute to the development of Alzheimer's Disease
A new study published in The Journal of Physiology has shown that misfolded protein build-up in the gut could contribute to the development of Alzheimer's-like symptoms in mice.

COVID-19 pandemic: Opportunity to reduce, eliminate low-value practices in oncology?
How the COVID-19 pandemic can reshape care in patients with cancer to focus on discouraging unnecessary in-person visits, testing and low-value treatments is discussed in this article.

Stellar fireworks celebrate birth of giant cluster
Astronomers created a stunning new image showing celestial fireworks in star cluster G286.21+0.17.

Tiny mineral particles are better vehicles for promising gene therapy
University of Wisconsin-Madison researchers have developed a safer and more efficient way to deliver a promising new method for treating cancer and liver disorders and for vaccination -- including a COVID-19 vaccine from Moderna Therapeutics that has advanced to clinical trials with humans.

New candidate for raw material synthesis through gene transfer
Cyanobacteria hardly need any nutrients and use the energy of sunlight.

Twenty-year study tracks a sparrow song that went "viral" across Canada
With the help of citizen scientists, researchers have tracked how one rare sparrow song went ''viral'' across Canada, traveling over 3,000 kilometers between 2000 and 2019 and wiping out a historic song ending.

Center for BrainHealth advances understanding of brain connectivity in cannabis users
Center for BrainHealth® recently examined underlying brain networks in long-term cannabis users to identify patterns of brain connectivity when the users crave or have a desire to consume cannabis.

Fans love musicians' personalities as much as their music
Why do you like the music you do? You would think that it is because of the music itself.

Oat and rye bran fibres alter gut microbiota, reducing weight gain and hepatic inflammation
In a newly published experimental study, the consumption of dietary fibre from oat and rye brans supported the growth of beneficial gut microbiota, which in turn ameliorated cholesterol metabolism, enhanced gut barrier function and reduced hepatic inflammation.

Surge in domestic child abuse during pandemic, reports specialist UK children's hospital
There has been a surge in domestic child abuse during the coronavirus pandemic, suggests the experience of one specialist UK children's hospital, reported in Archives of Disease in Childhood.

Spawning fish and embryos most vulnerable to climate's warming waters
Spawning fish and embryos are far more vulnerable to Earth's warming waters than fish in other life stages, according to a new study, which uniquely relates fish physiological tolerance to temperature across the lifecycles of nearly 700 fish species.

Effect of COVID-19, pandemics on global surgical outreach
How surgical global health programs are affected by the COVID pandemic and why global surgical outreach models may need to be rehashed are discussed in this article.

Why are the offspring of older mothers less fit to live long and prosper?
In a new study in rotifers (microscopic invertebrates), scientists tested the evolutionary fitness of older-mother offspring in several real and simulated environments, including laboratory culture, under threat of predation in the wild, or with reduced food supply.

How the body fights off urinary tract infections
Some people are better protected than others against urinary tract infections.

The secret double life of histone H3 as a copper reductase enzyme
In a study that takes another look at histones' origins, researchers report these proteins, known for DNA-packing, may have evolutionary roots in early life in helping to maintain the use of metals like copper - fundamental for biological processes, but which became toxic to eukaryotes as they adapted to global oxygenation.

Men more likely than women to be seen as brilliant
Men are more likely than are women to be seen as ''brilliant,'' finds a new study measuring global perceptions linked to gender.

Rising water temperatures could endanger the mating of many fish species
In a new meta-study, experts from the Alfred Wegener Institute, Helmholtz Centre for Polar and Marine Research (AWI) have published ground-breaking findings on the effects of climate change for fish stock around the globe.

Good news and bad news: Changing trends in cardiovascular disease in Canada
An analysis of patient records in Canada provides important new insights into changing patterns of inpatient healthcare utilization.

New, more infectious strain of COVID-19 now dominates global cases of virus
Researchers have shown that a variation in the viral genome of Covid-19 improved its ability to infect human cells and helped it become the dominant strain circulating around the world today.

University of Oregon scientists dissociate water apart efficiently with new catalysts
University of Oregon chemists have made substantial gains in enhancing the catalytic water dissociation reaction in electrochemical reactors, called bipolar membrane electrolyzers, to more efficiently rip apart water molecules into positively charged protons and negatively charged hydroxide ions.

Blood tests can predict the risk of liver cirrhosis
Repeated measurements of the biomarker FIB-4 in the blood every few years can predict the risk of developing severe liver disease, according to a new study from Karolinska Institutet in Sweden published in the Journal of Hepatology.

New method measures temperature within 3D objects
University of Wisconsin-Madison engineers have made it possible to remotely determine the temperature beneath the surface of certain materials using a new technique they call depth thermography.

How a mutation on the novel coronavirus has come to dominate the globe
Two variants of the novel coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2), called G614 and D614, were circulating in mid-March.

Flexible material shows potential for use in fabrics to heat, cool
A new North Carolina State University study finds that a material made of carbon nanotubes has a combination of thermal, electrical and physical properties that make it an appealing candidate for next-generation smart fabrics.

A path to new nanofluidic devices applying spintronics technology
Japanese scientists have elucidated the mechanism of the hydrodynamic power generation using spin currents in micrometer-scale channels, finding that power generation efficiency improves drastically as the size of the flow is made smaller.

Spintronics: Faster data processing through ultrashort electric pulses
Physicists at Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg (MLU) and Lanzhou University in China developed a simple concept that could improve significantly magnetic-based data processing.

New method reveals how the Parkinson's disease protein damages cell membranes
In sufferers of Parkinson's disease, clumps of ╬▒-synuclein (alpha-synuclein), sometimes known as the 'Parkinson's protein', are found in the brain.

Arctic plants may not provide predicted carbon sequestration potential
The environmental benefits of taller, shrubbier tundra plants in the Arctic may be overstated, according to new research involving the University of Stirling.

Largest source of AATD stem cells collected
Researchers from the Center for Regenerative Medicine (CReM) at Boston University and Boston Medical Center (BMC) have assembled the largest repository of patient derived stem cells (iPSCs) from patients with alpha-1 antitrypsin deficiency (AATD).

Artificial intelligence brings pancreatic cancer screening one step closer to reality
Lugano, Switzerland, 2 July 2020 - Artificial intelligence (AI) holds promise for enabling earlier detection of pancreatic cancer, which is crucial to saving lives.

Newer variant of COVID-19-causing virus dominates global infections
Research out today in the journal Cell shows that a specific change in the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus virus genome, previously associated with increased viral transmission and the spread of COVID-19, is more infectious in cell culture.

Sniffing out smell
Neuroscientists describe for the first time how relationships between different odors are encoded in the brain.

Global threats: How lessons from COVID-19 can prevent environmental meltdown
COVID-19, climate emergencies, and mass extinction all share striking similarities, especially with regard to their 'lagged impacts.' In each, early intervention can prevent further damage.

A scientific measure of dog years
How old is your tail-wagging bundle of joy in human years?

New technique in which drugs make bacteria glow could help fight antibiotic resistance
A new technique could help reduce antibiotic prescribing by predicting which drugs could be effective in fighting bacteria within minutes.

Scientists reveal why tummy bugs are so good at swimming through your gut
Researchers have solved the mystery of why a species of bacteria that causes food poisoning can swim faster in stickier liquids, such as within guts.

Unprecedented ground-based discovery of 2 strongly interacting exoplanets
Several interacting exoplanets have already been spotted by satellites. But a new breakthrough has been achieved with, for the first time, the detection directly from the ground of an extrasolar system of this type.

Study supports link between COVID-19 and "COVID Toes"
There's considerable controversy over whether ''COVID toes''--red sores or lesions on the feet and hands in children and young adults--are truly caused by COVID-19.

Laughing gas may bring relief to veterans suffering from PTSD, new study suggests
A small pilot study provides an early glimpse of how some veterans struggling with PTSD may benefit from one simple, inexpensive treatment involving nitrous oxide, commonly known as laughing gas.

New light-based method for faster and 'green' production of building blocks for medicines
Researchers at Eindhoven University of Technology (TU/e), the Netherlands have developed a new method to convert gaseous, low-weight hydrocarbons into more complex molecules by illuminating the hydrocarbons with light in the presence of a suitable catalyst.
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.