Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

July 28, 2020
A practicable and reliable therapeutic strategy to treat SARS-CoV-2 infection
In a new study in Cell Discovery, Chen-Yu Zhang's group at Nanjing University and two other groups from Wuhan Institute of Virology and the Second Hospital of Nanjing present a novel finding that absorbed miRNA MIR2911 in honeysuckle decoction (HD) can directly target SARS-CoV-2 genes and inhibit viral replication.

New scenario for the India-Asia collision dynamics
The India-Asia collision is an outstanding smoking gun in the study of continental collision dynamics.

The mystery of the less deadly mosquito nets
Research published in Nature Communications shows that insecticide-treated mosquito nets, the mainstay in the global battle against malaria, are not providing the protection they once did - and scientists say that's a cause for serious concern in tropical and subtropical countries around the globe.

Increasing global consumption of Watch antibiotics reflects stewardship challenges
Researchers at CDDEP, Johns Hopkins University, St. George's University of London, and Washington University School of Medicine analyzed global trends of antibiotic consumption in each WHO AWaRe category over 15 years.

Phosphoprotein biomarkers to guide cancer therapy are identified
Researchers led by James Bibb, Ph.D., professor of surgery at the University of Alabama at Birmingham, suggest using a broader lens of post-translational modification analysis to identify new biomarkers of cancer drivers that may allow a much more precise prediction of patient responses to treatments.

Seafood products made from cells should be labeled cell-based
Companies seeking to commercialize seafood products made from the cells of fish or shellfish should use the term ''cell-based'' on product labels, according to a Rutgers study - the first of its kind - in the Journal of Food Science.

Novel diabetes drug candidate shows promising properties in human islets and mouse models
Researchers have discovered a new drug candidate that offers a major advance in the treatment for diabetes.

Assessing inequities in COVID-19 deaths by race/ethnicity reported by CDC
Weighted and unweighted population data are compared to assess inequities in COVID-19 deaths by race/ethnicity as reported by the U.S.

A new cell & gene therapy approach to treat common bleeding disorder
WFIRM researchers have developed an optimized cellular platform for delivering Factor 8 to better treat patients with hemophilia A.

Experimental COVID-19 vaccine protects upper and lower airways in nonhuman primates
Two doses of an experimental vaccine to prevent coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) induced robust immune responses and rapidly controlled the coronavirus in the upper and lower airways of rhesus macaques exposed to SARS-CoV-2, report scientists from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), part of the National Institutes of Health.

The Lancet Psychiatry: First clinical trial of its kind studies whether cannabidiol could help treat cannabis use disorder, compared to placebo
Prescription medication of cannabis extract cannabidiol, or CBD, is safe for daily use in treating cannabis use disorder, and could help people to cut down on cannabis use, according to an initial randomised controlled trial published in The Lancet Psychiatry journal.

Mental fatigue of multiple sclerosis linked to inefficient recruitment of neural resources
Results of the pilot study were consistent with prior research into brain activity in response to mental fatigue, according to Dr.

How clean water technologies could get a boost from X-ray synchrotrons
In a new perspective, SLAC and University of Paderborn scientists argue that research at synchrotrons could help improve water-purifying materials in ways that might not otherwise be possible.

Metal-breathing bacteria could transform electronics, biosensors, and more
When the Shewanella oneidensis bacterium ''breathes'' in certain metal and sulfur compounds anaerobically, the way an aerobic organism would process oxygen, it produces materials that could be used to enhance electronics, electrochemical energy storage, and drug-delivery devices.

Owe the IRS? No problem, some Americans say
A new study shows the surprising way that many American taxpayers adjust their standard of living when they owe money to the IRS versus when they receive tax refunds.

Injury patterns may help differentiate between accidents and physical abuse in elderly patients, new study finds
The signs of physical abuse among elderly people can be challenging for health care professionals to recognize, resulting in as few as one in 24 cases being reported to authorities.

New blood test shows great promise in the diagnosis of Alzheimer's disease
A new blood test demonstrated remarkable promise in discriminating between persons with and without Alzheimer's disease and in persons at known genetic risk may be able to detect the disease as early as 20 years before the onset of cognitive impairment, according to a large international study published today in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) and simultaneously presented at the Alzheimer's Association International Conference.

To end King Coal's reign, must his most loyal subjects get paid?
Governments should be prepared to pay billions of pounds to operators of coal-fired power plants in agreements to shut down their plants early, a new paper published in Nature Climate Change today recommends.

Antibiotics use early in life increases risk of inflammatory bowel disease later in life
Even short, single antibiotic courses given to young animals can predispose them to inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) when they are older, according to Rutgers researchers.

Casting a wider net to catch more cases of pulmonary hypertension
Investigators took an evidence-based approach to determine the lower end of the risk spectrum for PH based on pulmonary vascular resistance (PVR), which is resistance against blood flow from the pulmonary artery to the lungs.

Researchers discover 'Marie Kondo' protein which aids in organizing fruit fly embryos
Researchers at the University of Colorado School of Medicine have discovered a protein in fruit fly embryos, dubbed Marie Kondo, that destroys maternal proteins.

Text messaging: The next gen of therapy in mental health
In the US, approximately 19% of all adults have a diagnosable mental illness.

ADHD services map reveals major gaps in care, failing the vulnerable
New research has called for urgent action after creating a map that identifies gaps in services for adults with ADHD across the UK, leaving vulnerable people struggling to access vital support and treatment.

Winning the digital transformation race: three emerging approaches for leading transition
New research from Professor Feng Li, Chair of Information Management at City's Business School has outlined three new approaches that digital innovators can take to reduce the risk of failure and seize competitive advantage in the industry.

Researchers urge the scientific community to #StopPandemicBias
While there is little doubt that COVID-19 will have lasting impacts on health and the economy, a group of researchers is bringing attention to the effects the pandemic could have on the careers of scientific researchers.

Therapy helps children with food allergies manage severe anxiety
Children's Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) has launched the Food Allergy Bravery (FAB) Clinic to help children with a phobia of anaphylaxis.

Your brain on birth control
Millions of women have been taking oral contraceptives, but little is known about whether the synthetic hormones found in the oral contraceptives have behavioural and neurophysiological effects, especially during puberty and early adolescence, which are critical periods of brain development.

How Salt Lake's buildings affect its climate future
With climate change, we'll need less natural gas for heat and more electricity for cooling -- but what's the balance ?

Study reveals how renegade protein interrupts brain cell function in Alzheimer's disease
Dozens of molecules may tangle up with rogue bundles of tau, a protein that normally gives nerve fibers structure, to cause brain cell damage that contributes to neurodegenerative diseases, a new study shows.

The amazing travels of small RNAs
Biologists have known for some time that RNA interference can silence genes in far-?off cells.

Adjusting FRAX estimates to account for site of recent fracture
This important new study by Kanis et al provides probability ratios that can be used to adjust conventional FRAX estimates of fracture probability by accounting for the site of a recent fracture.

How climate change impacts prescribed burning days
Climate change in eastern Australia will shift when hazard reduction burning occurs but for most areas the number of suitable days remains unchanged.

Quitline plus surgery are big motivators for giving up smoking
Smokers who have thoracic surgery are much more likely to stop using tobacco if they also complete a quitline intervention, a new UC Davis Health study shows.

Research suggests combating a pandemic is 500 times more expensive than preventing one
BU biologist and peers find investing in wildlife monitoring and deforestation could prevent costly pandemics.

Media coverage fostered support for gun control in wake of NZ mosque shootings
Media coverage of the March 2019 Christchurch mosque shootings contributed to an increase in public support for gun control, a study by researchers at the University of Otago, Wellington has found.

New soil models may ease atmospheric CO2, climate change
To remove carbon dioxide from the Earth's atmosphere in an effort to slow climate change, scientists must get their hands dirty and peek underground.

For rufous hummingbirds, migration looks different depending on age and sex
Plucky, beautiful and declining in numbers at about a 2% annual rate, the rufous hummingbird makes its long annual migration in different timing and route patterns based the birds' age and sex, new research by Oregon State University shows.

Eavesdropping on trout building their nests
Steelhead trout stirring up the sediment of the river bed were detected by seismic sensors.

Studies demonstrate further evidence WTC responders are at risk for dementia
Two studies led by Stony Brook University researchers to be presented virtually at the Alzheimer's Association International Conference on July 28, 2020, indicate that World Trade Center (WTC) first responders are at risk for developing dementia.

Increased attention to sad faces predicts depression risk in teenagers
Teenagers who tend to pay more attention to sad faces are more likely to develop depression, but specifically within the context of stress, according to new research from Binghamton University, State University of New York.

Solving a DNA mystery
''A watched pot never boils,'' as the saying goes, but that was not the case for UC Santa Barbara researchers watching a ''pot'' of liquids formed from DNA.

Gorilla relationships limited in large groups
Mountain gorillas that live in oversized groups may have to limit the number of strong social relationships they form, new research suggests.

New study finds racial disparities in COVID-19-related deaths exist beyond income differences in 10
New analyses by a team of researchers at NYU Grossman School of Medicine examine the interplay between race/ethnicity and income on COVID-19 cases and related deaths in 10 major US cities.

What's the best way to estimate and track COVID-19 mortality?
When used correctly, the symptomatic case fatality ratio (sCFR) and the infection fatality ratio (IFR) are better measures by which to monitor COVID-19 epidemics than the commonly reported case fatality ratio (CFR), according to a new study published this week in PLOS Medicine by Anthony Hauser of the University of Bern, Switzerland, and colleagues.

What jigsaw puzzles tell us about child development
New research shows that children only learn to do jigsaw puzzles once they have reached a certain stage of development.

New studies reveal inside of central energy release region in solar eruption
Prof. LIN Jun from the Yunnan Observatories of Chinese Academy of Sciences, collaborating with Prof.

Higher BPA levels linked to more asthma symptoms in children
Children in low-income neighborhoods in Baltimore tended to have more asthma symptoms when levels of the synthetic chemical BPA (Bisphenol A) in their urine were elevated, according to a study from researchers at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and School of Medicine.

Acute exercise has beneficial effects on the immune system during prostate cancer
New research published this week in Experimental Physiology found that in prostate cancer survivors, a moderate bout of exercise kept the cell count of certain type of immune cells at a normal level, suggesting the exercise is safe for prostate cancer survivors.

New machine learning method allows hospitals to share patient data -- privately
Penn Medicine researchers have shown that an approach called federated learning is successful in the context of brain imaging, by being able to analyze magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans of brain tumor patients and distinguish healthy brain tissue from cancerous regions.

Multiomics investigation revealing the characteristics of HIV-1-infected cells in vivo
A research group at The Institute of Medical Science, The University of Tokyo (IMSUT) using HIV-1-infected cells performed ''multiomics'' analyses, which are technologies recently developed to comprehensively investigate the features of biological samples.In this study, a hematopoietic stem cell-transplanted humanized mouse model infected with a gene-modified HIV-1 was used to reveal multiple characteristics of HIV-1-producing cells in vivo.

Alzheimer's protein in blood indicates early brain changes
Researchers at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis used mass spectrometry to discover that a form of the Alzheimer's protein tau is found at high levels in the blood of people in the earliest stages of Alzheimer's disease.

How will the population accept COVID-19 tracing apps?
Coronavirus tracing applications for the detection of infection chains are currently being developed and made available.

NASA's Terra Satellite finds wind shear weakening Tropical Storm Douglas
Former Hurricane Douglas has encountered strong wind shear after passing the Hawaiian Islands and has now weakened to a tropical storm.

Oldest South American fossil lizard discovered in Brazil
The animal was approximately 10 cm long and lived more than 130 million years ago in what is now the state of Minas Gerais.

Community-level disparities in COVID-19 infections, deaths in large US metro areas
The association of neighborhood race/ethnicity and poverty with COVID-19 infections and related deaths in urban U.S. counties are examined in this observational study.

CHOP spine surgeons outline how to prioritize procedures amid pandemic
As hospitals resume elective procedures, including pediatric spine surgeries, surgeons from Children's Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) have outlined a framework for prioritizing pediatric spine surgeries amid the pandemic.

Iowa State University scientists examine reproductive effects of glyphosate in mice
A pair of recently published studies analyzed how ovarian function in mice responded to various levels of exposure to glyphosate, a chemical extensively used to kill weeds.

Discovery will allow more sophisticated work at nanoscale
The movement of fluids through small capillaries and channels is crucial for processes ranging from blood flow through the brain to power generation and electronic cooling systems, but that movement often stops when the channel is smaller than 10 nanometers.

Using artificial intelligence to smell the roses
A pair of researchers at the University of California, Riverside, has used machine learning to understand what a chemical smells like -- a research breakthrough with potential applications in the food flavor and fragrance industries.

Prescribed CBD could help people quit cannabis
A benchmark clinical trial published today shows that cannabidiol (CBD) could be a safe and effective treatment for problematic cannabis use.

A blood test for Alzheimer's? Markers for tau take us a step closer
A simple blood test for Alzheimer's would be a great advance for individuals with -- and at risk for -- the disease, families, doctors and researchers.

NZ-China agreement has brought strong economic gains, Otago research
An Otago economist argues New Zealand should expand its trade agreements in the wake of COVID-19, as his new research shows the country benefited from the NZ-China free trade agreement.

Medicaid-covered mothers have less say in birthing experience: BU study
Giving birth in the United States is a radically different experience based on race and income, illustrated most brutally by the Black and Indigenous maternal mortality crisis.

Probing the properties of magnetic quasi-particles
Researchers have for the first time measured a fundamental property of magnets called magnon polarisation -- and in the process, are making progress towards building low-energy devices.

Study: COVID-19 pandemic has negatively influenced subjective well-being
The COVID-19 pandemic has also affected many people's subjective well-being.

Researchers identify evolutionary origins of SARS-CoV-2
By reconstructing the evolutionary history of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that is responsible for the COVID-19 pandemic, an international research team of Chinese, European and U.S. scientists has discovered that the lineage that gave rise to the virus has been circulating in bats for decades and likely includes other viruses with the ability to infect humans.

Madagascar: New mouse lemur species discovered
Group of researchers, from six countries, identified, genetically and morphologically, a new population of rats (Microcebus) that inhabit the same forests as another usual species previously described.

Shrinking dwarves
The biomass of small animals that decompose plants in the soil and thus maintain its fertility is declining both as a result of climate change and over-intensive cultivation.

Tracking symptoms with app an inexact predictor of coronavirus infection
A new piece in Family Practice indicates that tracking symptoms affiliated with the novel coronavirus through an app may not be a good predictor of the spread of the disease.

Decline of bees, other pollinators threatens US crop yields
Crop yields for apples, cherries and blueberries across the United States are being reduced by a lack of pollinators, according to Rutgers-led research, the most comprehensive study of its kind to date.

Sweat science: Engineers detect health markers in thread-based, wearable sweat sensors
Engineers at Tufts University have created a first-of-its-kind, flexible electronic sensing patch that can be sewn into clothing to analyze sweat for multiple markers.

Adult stem cells/glaucoma drug combo promotes diabetic wound healing in mice
A new study released in STEM CELLS Translational Medicine shows promise of a major breakthrough in healing chronic foot ulcers resulting from diabetes.

Calcium and vitamin D nutrient deficiencies lead to higher risk for osteoporosis
Research article in the journal PLoS ONE examines inadequate nutrient intake and its relationship to poor bone health, specifically risk of osteoporosis.

Study: A plunge in incoming sunlight may have triggered 'snowball earths'
Global ice ages may have been triggered by sharp declines in incoming sunlight, research finds.

Supportive communities and progressive politics can reduce suicide risk among LGBTQ girls
Many LGBTQ youth continue to experience stigma and discrimination despite Canada's progress in protecting human rights.

Solving materials problems with a quantum computer
Scientists at Argonne and the University of Chicago have developed a method paving the way to using quantum computers to simulate realistic molecules and complex materials.

Music training may not make children smarter after all
Music training does not have a positive impact on children's cognitive skills, such as memory, and academic achievement, such as maths, reading or writing, according to a study published in Memory & Cognition.

Artificial intelligence could speed up and improve Alzheimer's diagnosis
Research from the University of Sheffield's Neuroscience Institute examines how the routine use of Artificial Intelligence (AI) in healthcare could help to relieve the economic impact neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer's, put on the NHS

Investigating diagnostic accuracy of blood-based biomarker for Alzheimer disease
Researchers compared the accuracy of the blood biomarker tau phosphorylated at threonine 217 (P-tau217) with other biomarkers for distinguishing Alzheimer from other neurodegenerative diseases in individuals with or at risk for dementia.

Study pinpoints women who benefit less from 3D mammograms
A new comparison of two breast-screening technologies has found that, for most women, digital breast tomosynthesis (DBT, also called 3D mammography) is superior to digital mammography for cancer detection and for reducing recall visits due to unclear or false findings.

'Etch-a-Sketching' critical p-n nano-junctions for 2D Semiconductor diode
Elisa Riedo, professor at the New York University (NYU) Tandon school of Engineering led an international team that used thermal scanning probe lithography (t-SPL) to fabricate state-of-the-art ''p-n junctions'' on a single atomic layer of molybdeunum disulfide (MoS2) a transition metal dichalcogenide.

Human coagulation factor XIIIa expressed in pichia pastoris as fXIIIa hemostatic agent
In this study, recombinant pPICZαC-FXIIIa was expressed in Pichia pastoris, purified as well as its biological activity was determined.

Scientists unlock genetic secrets of wine growers' worst enemy
Following a decade-long effort, scientists have mapped out the genome of an aphid-like pest capable of decimating vineyards.

BU national survey of gun owners: Majority favor gun violence prevention policies
A new Boston University School of Public Health (BUSPH) study sheds new light on the opinions and practices of U.S. gun owners, casting doubt on the way gun owners have been portrayed in policy discussions and media, and even how they perceive themselves.

Microbiologists clarify relationship between microbial diversity and soil carbon storage
In what they believe is the first study of its kind, researchers led by postdoctoral researcher Luiz A.

New technique enables mineral ID of precious Antarctic micrometeorites
The composition of Antarctic micrometeorites and other tiny but precious rocks such as those from space missions--is really hard to analyze without some sample loss.

UMass Amherst biologists zero in on cells' environmental sensing mechanism
Evolutionary and developmental biologist Craig Albertson and colleagues at UMass Amherst report that they have identified a molecular mechanism that allows an organism to change the way it looks depending on the environment it is exposed to, a process known as phenotypic plasticity.

University of Cincinnati ergonomics expert says work smarter at home
Millions of office workers have been sent home to work remotely in the midst of COVID-19.

Scientists reveal an explosive secret hidden beneath seemingly trustworthy volcanoes
An international team of volcanologists working on remote islands in the Galápagos Archipelago has found that volcanoes which reliably produce small basaltic lava eruptions hide chemically diverse magmas in their underground plumbing systems - including some with the potential to generate explosive activity.

Research could save years of breeding for new Miscanthus hybrids
As climate change becomes increasingly difficult to ignore, scientists are working to diversify and improve alternatives to fossil-fuel-based energy.

NYUAD astrophysicist investigates the possibility of life below the surface of Mars
Although no life has been detected on the Martian surface, a new study from astrophysicist and research scientist at the Center for Space Science at NYU Abu Dhabi, Dimitra Atri finds that conditions below the surface could potentially support it.

Identification of new "oxidative stress sensor" MTK1
A research group at the Institute of Medical Science, The University of Tokyo in Japan has uncovered a new mechanism that elicits a cellular response by detecting oxidative stress in the human body.

Scientists prove bird ovary tissue can be preserved in fossils
A research team led by Dr. Alida Bailleul from the Institute of Vertebrate Paleontology and Paleoanthropology (IVPP) of the Chinese Academy of Sciences has proved that remnants of bird ovaries can be preserved in the fossil record.

Gene variations at birth reveal origins of inflammation and immune disease
A study published in the journal Nature Communications has pinpointed a number of areas of the human genome that may help explain the neonatal origins of chronic immune and inflammatory diseases of later life, including type 1 diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis and coeliac disease.

Computational gene study suggests new pathway for COVID-19 inflammatory response
A team led by Dan Jacobson of the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory used the Summit supercomputer at ORNL to analyze genes from cells in the lung fluid of nine COVID-19 patients compared with 40 control patients.

Acute depression, stress, anxiety higher during peak of COVID-19 pandemic
Rates of elevated psychological distress, including depression and anxiety symptoms, were found among Australian adults during the peak of the COVID-19 outbreak in Australia, according to a new study published July 28, 2020 in the open-access journal PLOS ONE by Jill Newby of the University of New South Wales at the Black Dog Institute, Sydney, Australia, and colleagues.

Medieval medicine remedy could provide new treatment for modern day infections
Antibiotic resistance is an increasing battle for scientists to overcome, as more antimicrobials are urgently needed to treat biofilm-associated infections.

Experimental drug for Alzheimer's may help children with autism
An extensive international study led by Tel Aviv University researchers found deposits of the tau protein typically found in Alzheimer's patients in tissues taken from the postmortem brain of a 7-year-old autistic child.

Immunoprotein impairs Sars-Cov-2
A protein produced by the human immune system can strongly inhibit corona viruses, including Sars-Cov-2, the pathogen causing Covid-19.

Iron deficiency during infancy reduces vaccine efficacy
About 40 percent of children around the globe suffer from anaemia because they do not consume enough iron.

Researchers discover cell communication mechanism that drives cancer adaptation
Collaborative Cancer Research UK-funded studies from University of Oxford researchers have uncovered a new mechanism by which cancer cells adapt to the stresses they encounter as they grow and respond to therapies.

Econometric study on the JUUL system's market entry in Canada finds vaping product availability could reduce combustible cigarette sales
As part of Juul Labs' ongoing engagement with the public health community, the company today announced findings from a new study at the AcademyHealth 2020 Annual Research Meeting linking the JUUL System's market entry to decreased cigarette sales in Canada.

Black phosphorus future in 3D analysis, molecular fingerprinting
Many compact systems using mid-infrared technology continue to face compatibility issues when integrating with conventional electronics.

Deep sea microbes dormant for 100 million years are hungry and ready to multiply
In a new study published in Nature Communications, researchers reveal that given the right food in the right laboratory conditions, microbes collected from subseafloor sediment as old as 100 million years can revive and multiply, even after laying dormant since large dinosaurs prowled the planet.

Image processing algorithm allows indoor drones to fly autonomously
A research team from Japan has developed a single-camera machine vision algorithm, making it possible for lightweight hovering indoor robots to guide themselves by identifying and interpreting reference points on a tiled floor.

Ammonia synthesis from selective electroreduction of nitrates over electron-deficient Co
Heterostructured Co/CoO nanosheet arrays with electron-deficient Co were constructed and exhibited excellent performances for nitrate electroreduction to ammonia: Faradaic efficiency (93.8%) and selectivity (91.2%), greatly outperforming Co NSAs.
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