Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

October 06, 2020
Emerging field of integrative palliative care highlighted in journal special issue
An emerging field characterized as ''combining the natural synergy between integrative health and palliative medicine

Evolution: Shifts in mating preference
In their efforts to identify the genetic basis for differences in mate choice that keep two co-existing species of butterfly separate, evolutionary biologists at Ludwig-Maximlians-Universitaet (LMU) in Munich have identified five candidate genes that are associated with divergence in visual mating preferences.

Pesticides and food scarcity dramatically reduce wild bee population
The loss of flowering plants and the widespread use of pesticides could be a double punch to wild bee populations.

A diet high in prunes prevents bone loss associated with spinal cord injuries
Findings from a new study among mice show a diet high in dried plum (prunes) completely prevents bone loss associated with spinal cord injury (SCI), while also restoring some of the bone lost following SCI.

Many Non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma patients can skip radiation, collaborative study finds
Skipping radiation and receiving less chemotherapy may become the new standard of care for some lymphoma patients, according to a recent collaborative University of Arizona Health Sciences-led study.

Dried blood spot sampling offers inexpensive way to widen access to antibody testing for COVID-19
Using dried blood spot samples (DBS) is an accurate alternative to venous blood in detecting SARS-CoV-2 antibody tests, a new study by immunology experts at the University of Birmingham has found.

Plasma scientists optimize plant growth and yield
At the American Physical Society's Gaseous Electronics Conference, researchers described techniques for delivering plasma to seeds and plants and identifying which plants are most likely to respond.

UM researchers help study largest estimated Greenland ice loss
University of Montana researchers have contributed to a study forecasting significant ice loss in Greenland.

Catheter ablation linked to reduced risk of dementia in patients with atrial fibrillation
People with atrial fibrillation have a reduced risk of dementia if they undergo a procedure called catheter ablation to restore the normal rhythm of their heart, according to a new study published in the European Heart Journal that analyses over 27,000 patients with newly diagnosed atrial fibrillation out of a population of nearly a million people.

Forearm artery reveals humans evolving from changes in natural selection
Humans haven't developed genetic mutations for telepathy or superpowers just yet, but a new study shows our species is still evolving in unique ways and changes in the natural selection could be the major reason.

Big drug costs for small patients with rare diseases, study finds
Only about one in every 170 children take them. But ''orphan drugs'' accounted for 1 in every 15 private insurance dollars spent on children's health care in the United States in 2018, according to a new study.

Robotic surgery in the COVID-19 era: Urologists take on the challenges
Robotic surgery plays a major role in modern management of prostate cancer, bladder cancer, and other conditions treated by urologists.

Telehealth trains parents to improve behavior skills of children with autism
Training parents of children with autism spectrum disorder virtually about early behavioral intervention is an accessible and effective approach during the coronavirus pandemic or in other instances when in-person instruction is not possible, according to a Rutgers researcher.

Fostamatinib in chronic immune thrombocytopenia: No comparison -- added benefit not proven
Fostamatinib in chronic immune thrombocytopenia: no comparison -- added benefit not proven The manufacturer conducted no direct or indirect comparison of its drug with an appropriate comparator therapy (eltrombopag or romiplostim).

Indirect effects of the COVID-19 pandemic coincide with a heavy mental health burden
The financial and social disruption caused by COVID-19 lockdowns is linked to double the normal rates of anxiety and depression, according to a new Australian study.

Best materials for border molding in complete dentures fabrication
Application of border molding procedure in the treatment of edentulous jaws (toothlessness in either jaw) increases retention and stability of the prosthesis.

Tattoo inks: risk assessment for Pigment Blue 15:3 and Pigment Green 7
To date, there is no binding regulation governing the components used in tattoo inks at the European level.

Sprat, mollusks and algae: What a diet of the future might look like
Rethinking what we eat is essential if we hope to nourish ourselves sustainably and mind the climate.

Diet of pre-Columbian societies in the Brazilian Amazon reconstructed
A new study shows that hunting and agroforestry management, and not fishing, were the foundations of subsistence economy for pre-Columbian societies in the Amazon coast of Brazil.

Previous infection with other types of coronaviruses may lessen severity of COVID-19
Being previously infected with a coronaviruses that cause the 'common cold' may decrease the severity of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) infections, according to results of a new study.

Who is driving whom? Climate and carbon cycle in perpetual interaction
The current climate crisis underlines that carbon cycle perturbations can cause significant climate change.

Federal data undercounts Hurricane Irma's impact on mortality of nursing home residents
A new study finds the number of nursing home residents who died in the days following Hurricane Irma is far greater than what's been reported by the CDC.

Novel testing platform designed for breast cancer cells
A Purdue University team has developed a novel testing platform to evaluate how breast cancer cells respond to the recurrent stretching that occurs in the lungs during breathing.

Expanded newborn screening could save premature infants' lives
Expanding routine newborn screening to include a metabolic vulnerability profile could lead to earlier detection of life-threatening complications in babies born preterm, according to a study by UC San Francisco researchers.

California's August Complex largest fire in state's history
NOAA/NASA's Suomi NPP satellite captured another startling image of the August Complex of fires that has grown to over 1,000,000 acres burned (1,006,140 acres total) and because of that grim milestone the complex has been dubbed a ''gigafire.'' The August Complex is only 58% contained.

Mask mandates shown to significantly reduce spread of COVID-19
A new study by Simon Fraser University researchers has found clear evidence that wearing a mask can have a significant impact on the spread of COVID-19.

Battling with neighbors could make animals smarter
From ants to primates, 'Napoleonic' intelligence has evolved to help animals contend with the myriad cognitive challenges arising from interactions with rival outsiders, suggest researchers at the University of Bristol in a paper published in Nature Communications today [Tuesday 6 October].

Alzheimer's risk gene disrupts endocytosis, but another disease-linked gene could help
MIT researchers find that astrocytes with the risk-increasing APOE4 variant show deficits of key cellular function called endocytosis, but overexpressing another Alzheimer's associated gene, PICALM, overcame the defect

When disasters strike, nursing homes residents face considerable risk
With a focus on nursing home deaths after Hurricane Irma in 2017, study finds the effects of natural and other disasters on long-term care populations are vastly underestimated.

Story Tips: Remote population counting, slowing corrosion and turning down the heat
ORNL Story tips: Remote population counting, slowing corrosion and turning down the heat

Can your diet help protect the environment?
If Americans adhere to global dietary recommendations designed to reduce the impact of food production and consumption, environmental degradation could be reduced by up to 38%, according to a new paper published in the journal Environmental Justice.

What makes us averse to loss in making economic decisions? NYU neuroscientist aims to understand why under new NIH grant
NYU neuroscientist Christine Constantinople will examine the neurological intricacies of the decision-making process under a five-year, $1.5 million grant from the National Institutes of Health.

Some employees more likely to adhere to information security policies than others
Information security policies (ISP) that are not grounded in the realities of an employee's work responsibilities and priorities exposes organizations to higher risk for data breaches, according to new research from Binghamton University, State University of New York.

New climate model helps researchers better predict water needs
New research from the FAMU-FSU College of Engineering combines climate and land use projections to predict water availability, information that is crucial for the preparations of resource managers and land-use planners.

Sanford Burnham Prebys wins $8.5 million in NIH Transformative Research grants
Sanford Burnham Prebys Medical Discovery Institute today announced that two faculty members, Peter Adams, Ph.D., and Jerold Chun, M.D., Ph.D., have received National Institutes of Health (NIH) Director's Transformative Research Awards.

New aerosol research indicates significantly less risk of COVID-19 transmission from
New research published in Anaesthesia (a journal of the Association of Anaesthetists) shows that these procedures may only produce a fraction of the aerosols previously thought, much less than would be produced during a single regular cough.

Colorectal cancer treatment: the winning combinations
Chemotherapy has distressing side effects for patients and increases the risk of developing resistance to the treatment.

US Insulin prices 8 times higher than in other nations
Insulin list prices in the United States have increased dramatically over the past decade, with per person insulin spending doubling between 2012 and 2016.

Toothless dino's lost digits point to spread of parrot-like species
A newly discovered species of toothless, two-fingered dinosaur has shed light on how a group of parrot-like animals thrived more than 68 million years ago.

Earth grows fine gems in minutes
Some of Earth's finest gemstones grew in a matter of minutes.

Evolution of the Y chromosome in great apes deciphered
New analysis of the DNA sequence of the male-specific Y chromosomes from all living species of the great ape family helps to clarify our understanding of how this enigmatic chromosome evolved.

COVID-19 outcomes in patients with rare inborn immune disorders
Garvan's Prof Stuart Tangye and KU Leuven's Prof Isabelle Meyts have co-led a multi-centre international consortium to assess the severity of COVID-19 in individuals with inborn errors of immunity.

Promising treatment for aggressive childhood cancer
A drug has shown great promise in the treatment of neuroblastoma, an aggressive form of childhood cancer.

Study finds severe financial stress for breast cancer patients during and after treatment
The effects of cancer treatment on a patient's body are easy to see, whether it is a lack of hair on their head, sores on their skin or a look of fatigue on their face.

Children use make-believe aggression and violence to manage bad-tempered peers
Children are more likely to introduce violent themes into their pretend play, such as imaginary fighting or killing, if they are with playmates whom peers consider bad-tempered, new research suggests.

Multi-institutional team extracts more energy from sunlight with advanced solar panels
Researchers working to maximize solar panel efficiency said layering advanced materials atop traditional silicon is a promising path to eke more energy out of sunlight.

NREL, UK university partner to dive deeper into how enzymes digest plastic
A collaboration between scientists at the US Department of Energy's National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), the University of Portsmouth in the United Kingdom, and other partners has yielded further insight into the workings of plastic-eating enzymes.

Fighting pandemics with plasma
Scientists have long known that ionized gases can kill pathogenic bacteria, viruses, and some fungi.

Revising climate models with new aerosol field data
Advanced field measurements of how quickly aerosol particles are pulled out of the air can help improve climate predictions - and air quality forecasts.

Mysterious molecular phenomenon could boost precision of targeted drug delivery
Scientists have shown how a type of cellular binding could help pave the way for highly targeted therapies against diseases like cancer.

Imaging technique could replace tissue biopsies in assessing drug resistance in cancer
Imaging techniques could replace the need for invasive tissue biopsies in helping rapidly determine whether cancer treatments are working effectively, according to researchers at the University of Cambridge.

Every COVID-19 case seems different; these scientists want to know why
As scientists around the world develop life-saving COVID-19 vaccines and therapies, many are still wondering exactly why the disease proves deadly in some people and mild in others.A new international study led by scientists at La Jolla Institute for Immunology (LJI), The University of Liverpool and the University of Southampton is the first to give a detailed snapshot of how the body's CD4+ T cells respond to the SARS-CoV-2 virus.

How immune cells can recognise - and control - HIV when therapy is interrupted
Immune cells that can recognise residual HIV-infected cells in people living with HIV (PLWH) who take antiretroviral therapy (ART) remain active for years, says a new study published today in eLife.

Climate-friendly cooling to help ease global warming
A new IIASA-led study shows that coordinated international action on energy-efficient, climate-friendly cooling could avoid as much as 600 billion tonnes CO2 equivalent of greenhouse gas emissions in this century.

Predicting sports performance with "big data"
Smartphones and wearable devices are not simple accessories for athletes.

Remote control of blood sugar: Electromagnetic fields treat diabetes in animal models
Researchers at the University of Iowa may have discovered a safe new way to manage blood sugar non-invasively.

The first human settlers on islands caused extinctions
Though some believe prehistoric humans lived in harmony with nature, a new analysis of fossils shows human arrival in the Bahamas caused some birds to be lost from the islands and other species to be completely wiped out.

A simple enrollment change yields big dividends in children's early learning program
Researchers know that texting programs can greatly benefit young children's literacy.

New techniques probe vital and elusive proteins
Researchers at the Biodesign Center for Applied Structural Discovery and ASU's School of Molecular Sciences, along with their colleagues, investigate a critically important class of proteins, which adorn the outer membranes of cells.

Temple researchers discover drug resistance mechanism in leukemia, ID treatment strategy
In a new study, published online October 6 in the journal Cell Reports, scientists at the Lewis Katz School of Medicine at Temple University and researchers at multiple institutions in the United States and abroad, are the first to show that resistance to PARP inhibitors in leukemia can be overcome by combining PARP inhibition with blockade of TGFßR kinase activation.

Deep-brain imaging at synaptic resolution with adaptive optics 2-photon endomicroscopy
Recognizing the need for improved imaging capabilities, a group of scientists from the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology (HKUST) focused their sights on achieving brain imaging at synaptic resolution.

Researchers use multi-ancestry comparison to refine risk factors for coronary artery disease
An international group led by researchers from the RIKEN Center for Integrative Medical Sciences have used a combination of genome-wide association analysis--or GWAS--and a trans-ancestry comparison of different GWAS studies, to come up with a more accurate predictor of coronary artery disease based on genetic factors.

Risk of self-harm increases for boys and girls who experience earlier puberty
Boys and girls who experience puberty earlier than their peers have an increased risk of self-harm in adolescence, a study funded by the National Institute for Health Research Bristol Biomedical Research Centre (NIHR Bristol BRC) and published in the journal Epidemiology & Psychiatric Sciences today [Tuesday 6 October] has found.

Evidence of Alzheimer's, Parkinson's & MND in brains of young people exposed to dirty air
After examining the brainstems of 186 young Mexico City residents aged between 11 months and 27 years of age, researchers, including Professor Barbara Maher from Lancaster University, found markers not only of Alzheimer's disease, but also of Parkinson's and of motor neurone disease (MND) too.

Targeting our second brain to fight diabetes
Patrice Cani (UCLouvain) and Claude Knauf (INSERM) have discovered a 'jammer' that blocks communication between the gut and the brain, thus preventing proper regulation of sugar and causing insulin resistance in people with diabetes.

Infrared NASA imagery finds Chan-hom organizing, consolidating
NASA's Aqua satellite analyzed the large Tropical Storm Chan-hom as it tracked through the Northwestern Pacific Ocean.

Community health workers could play a key part in combating COVID-19 in Brazil, study says
An article in The Lancet stresses the vulnerability of these health workers, whose readiness to counter fake news with trustworthy information, and to monitor COVID-19 patients in home isolation, has been neglected.

Evolution in action: New Plant species in the Swiss Alps
A new plant species named Cardamine insueta appeared in the region of Urnerboden in the Swiss alps, after the land has changed from forest to grassland over the last 150 years.

RUDN University Chemist created a niobium-silica catalyst to boost petrochemical reactions
Alkylation reactions are used in the petrochemical industry to obtain high-octane number components for gasolines.

Birds risk starvation trying to "keep pace" with climate change
Surviving on a warming planet can be a matter of timing--but simply shifting lifecycle stages to match the tempo of climate change has hidden dangers for some animals, according to new research from the Max Planck Institute of Animal Behaviour and Cornell University.

Hospitalized COVID-19 patients are younger, healthier than influenza patients
Patients hospitalized with COVID-19 were more often male, younger, and had fewer underlying medical conditions than hospitalized influenza patients, found an international study led by data scientists at Columbia University.

There's a reason bacteria stay in shape
A simple theoretical model seeks to explain why bacteria remain roughly the same size and shape.

Interplanetary storm chasing
Harvard researchers create a new 3D model that could explain the formation of a hexagon storm on Saturn -- a hurricane about 20,000 miles in diameter.

Do eyeglasses help keep coronavirus out? Johns Hopkins expert says more evidence needed
According to a new Chinese study, wearing eyeglasses for more than eight hours per day may offer some protection against SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19.

Astronomers turn up the heavy metal to shed light on star formation
Astronomers from The University of Western Australia's node of the International Centre for Radio Astronomy Research (ICRAR) have developed a new way to study star formation in galaxies from the dawn of time to today.

Could megatesla magnetic fields be realized on Earth?
A team of researchers led by Osaka University discovered a novel mechanism called a ''microtube implosion,'' demonstrating the generation of megatesla-order magnetic fields, which is three orders of magnitude higher than those ever experimentally achieved.

Liquid gel in COVID patients' lungs makes way for new treatment
In some patients who died with severe COVID-19 and respiratory failure, a jelly was formed in the lungs.

Hydrogen embrittlement creates complications for clean energy storage, transportation
Hydrogen is becoming a crucial pillar in the clean energy movement, and developing safe and cost-effective storage and transportation methods for it is essential but complicated, because hydrogen can cause brittleness in several metals including ferritic steel.

Study offers global review of impact of COVID-19 on cancer treatment and research
The report, by researchers at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and other institutions, suggests that while COVID-19 has complicated the treatment of cancer patients, it has also spurred creative solutions to challenges in clinical care, and research into the new disease is benefiting from insights gained over years of cancer research.

This 'squidbot' jets around and takes pics of coral and fish
Engineers at the University of California San Diego have built a squid-like robot that can swim untethered, propelling itself by generating jets of water.

Energy-harvesting plastics pass the acid test
Air-stable coatings can improve the longevity of wearable devices that tap into body heat.

Supercharged 'clones' spark scarlet fever's re-emergence
Scarlet fever is on the rise worldwide, after being almost eradicated by the 1940s.

CRISPRing trees for a climate-friendly economy
Researchers led by prof. Wout Boerjan (VIB-UGent Center for Plant Systems Biology) have discovered a way to stably finetune the amount of lignin in poplar by applying CRISPR/Cas9 technology.

Experiments with twisted 2D materials catch electrons behaving collectively
A team led by the University of Washington reports that carefully constructed stacks of graphene -- a 2D form of carbon -- can exhibit highly correlated electron properties.

Effects of acute and chronic graft-versus-myelodysplastic syndrome on long-term outcomes following a
A research group led by Assistant Professor Takaaki Konuma in the Department of Hematology/Oncology, the Hospital of the Institute of Medical Science, the University of Tokyo (IMSUT Hospital) has demonstrated a graft-versus-tumor (GVT) effect of a previously unknown/novel allogeneic hematopoietic cell transplantation in MDS patients.

Tuned lighting helps nursing home residents get better sleep, study finds
A study led by researchers at the Brown University School of Public Health found that using tuned LED lighting cut in half the number of sleep disturbances among older residents in long-term care.

'COVID-19 free' hospital areas could save lives after surgery - global study
Setting up 'COVID-19 free' hospital areas for surgical patients could save lives during the second wave of the pandemic - reducing the risk of death from lung infections associated with coronavirus, a new global study reveals.

RTL1 gene a likely culprit behind temple and Kagami-Ogata syndromes
Researchers from Tokyo Medical and Dental University (TMDU) have found that Rtl1, which is a mouse ortholog of the human RTL1 gene, appears to be the major gene responsible for muscle and placental defects in models of Temple and Kagami-Ogata syndromes, which are serious genetic conditions.

UC study: More coverage of climate wanted
Large majorities of American news audiences care about climate change and want more information from the media on the topic, according to a new report from the University of Cincinnati, in partnership with Yale University and George Mason University.

The plant hormone auxin may promote disease by regulating virulence gene expression
This work provides another example of how plant hormones can be used by microbes as an environmental cue, which seems to be emerging as a common strategy as scientists learn more about how pathogens and parasites sense their plant hosts.

Exploring the golden hour: Delays in trauma treatment linked to disability and death
Some clinicians consider that after a traumatic injury, patients are most likely to survive if they receive medical treatment within one hour--the so-called 'golden hour.' A new study led by Chiang Wen-Chu at National Taiwan University Hospital, Yunlin Branch, and published October 6th, 2020 in PLOS Medicine, explores that idea, finding that longer delays in treatment could increase a patient's risk of disability or death.

New tech sees teens with diabetes improve glucose monitoring, but not control
A world-first Otago study has revealed flash glucose monitors help youth with type 1 diabetes better monitor their blood sugar levels, but it does not improve glucose control.

Igniting the synthetic transport of amino acids in living cells
Researchers from ICIQ's Ballester group and IRBBarcelona's Palacín group have published a paper in Chem showing how a synthetic carrier calix[4]pyrrole cavitand can transport amino acids across liposome and cell membranes bringing future therapies a step closer.

'Brain fog' following COVID-19 recovery may indicate PTSD
A new report suggests that lingering ''brain fog'' and other neurological symptoms after COVID -19 recovery may be due to post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), an effect observed in past human coronavirus outbreaks such as SARS and MERS.

Testing for a lipoprotein linked to heart risk is as effective as blood work
Elevated levels of a little-known lipoprotein in the blood that may put people at high risk of cardiovascular disease can be as accurately detected by genetic testing as by conventional laboratory measurement.

The number and clonality of TCRs are associated with the prognosis of colorectal cancer
This study has used a new technique called 'T-cell receptor (TCR) immuno-sequencing', which allows us to obtain both the number of T lymphocytes that infiltrate the tumor and their clonality index.

Indonesia's old and deep peatlands offer an archive of environmental changes
Researchers probing peatlands to discover clues about past environments and carbon stocks on land have identified peatland on Borneo that is twice as old and much deeper than previously thought.

NASA's TESS creates a cosmic vista of the northern sky
Familiar stars shine, nebulae glow, and nearby galaxies tantalize in a new panorama of the northern sky assembled from 208 pictures captured by NASA's Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite (TESS).

Hunting for the lowest known nuclear-excited state
Measurements in thorium-229 take a step towards the direct laser excitation of an atomic nucleus in this unique isotope

Diamonds found with gold in Canada's Far North offer clues to Earth's early history
The presence of diamonds in an outcrop atop an unrealized gold deposit in Canada's Far North mirrors the association found above the world's richest gold mine, according to University of Alberta research that fills in blanks about the thermal conditions of Earth's crust three billion years ago.

Study finds odor-sensing neuron regeneration process is adaptive
Results show that diminished odor stimulation reduces the number of newly-generated neurons that express particular odorant receptors, indicating a selective alteration in the neurogenesis of these neuron subtypes.

Watch how cells squeeze through channels
Observations of cells moving through small channels shed new light on cell migration in 3D environments, researchers report October 6 in Biophysical Journal.

Underwater robots to autonomously dock mid-mission to recharge and transfer data
Robots exploring deep bodies of water can only go so far before needing to recharge and upload data.

A timeline on the evolution of reptiles
A statistical analysis of that vast database is helping scientists better understand the evolution of these cold-blooded vertebrates by contradicting a widely held theory that major transitions in evolution always happened in big, quick (geologically speaking) bursts, triggered by major environmental shifts.

Donors more likely to give to COVID causes when font matches message
Appeals seeking donations to help fight hunger during the COVID-19 pandemic were more successful when the typeface in which the appeal was written mirrored the tone of the donation request, a new study has found.

Breaking the coupling process
Real-time observation of signal transmission in proteins provides new insights for drug research.

NASA-NOAA satellite finds Hurricane Delta rapidly intensifying
Infrared imagery from NASA-NOAA's Suomi NPP satellite revealed that Hurricane Delta has been rapidly growing stronger and more powerful.

Research identifies sperm biomarker associated with couples' pregnancy probability
Researchers at the University of Massachusetts Amherst have identified a single-measure biomarker in sperm mitochondrial DNA that may predict male reproductive health and pregnancy success.

Sugary beverages consumed while breastfeeding affects cognitive development in children
New research shows that a high sugar diet during the breastfeeding period can impact developmental outcomes during infancy.

Social media postings linked to hate crimes
A new paper in the Journal of the European Economic Association, published by Oxford University Press, explores the connection between social media and hate crimes.

New research supports sofosbuvir in combination with other antivirals for COVID-19
Columbia Engineering researchers report that Sofosbuvir-terminated RNA is more resistant to the proofreader of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, than Remdesivir-terminated RNA.

Warmer winters are keeping some lakes from freezing
Warmer winters due to climate change are causing lakes in the Northern Hemisphere to experience more ice-free years, according to a new study.

How mobile apps grab our attention
Aalto University researchers alongside international collaborators have done the first empirical study on how users pay visual attention to mobile app designs.

RUDN University linguist: learning foreign language is harder for visually impaired people
A scientist from RUDN University analysed the effect of visual impairment on a person's perception of unfamiliar sounds when learning a foreign language.

NASA catches development of Tropical Storm Norbert as Marie declines
NASA-NOAA's Suomi NPP satellite passed over the Eastern Pacific Ocean and captured the birth of a depression that became Tropical Storm Norbert while Marie continued weakening while headed toward the Central Pacific.
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