Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

January 18, 2021
New management approach can help avoid species vulnerability or extinction
Research focuses on transient nature of species' and ecosystem stability; illustrates how prepare for possible flips.

Mount Sinai researchers build models using machine learning technique to enhance predictions of COVID-19 outcomes
Mount Sinai researchers have published one of the first studies using federated learning to examine electronic health records to better predict how COVID-19 patients will progress.

New computational tool reliably differentiates between cancer and normal cells from single-cell RNA-sequencing data
MD Anderson researchers have developed a new computational tool to accurately differentiate between cancer cells and normal cells when analyzing large single-cell RNA-sequencing data.

Personalized brain stimulation alleviates severe depression symptoms
Targeted neuromodulation tailored to individual patients' distinctive symptoms is an increasingly common way of correcting misfiring brain circuits in people with epilepsy or Parkinson's disease.

Inexpensive battery charges rapidly for electric vehicles, reduces range anxiety
Range anxiety, the fear of running out of power before being able to recharge an electric vehicle, may be a thing of the past, according to a team of Penn State engineers who are looking at lithium iron phosphate batteries that have a range of 250 miles with the ability to charge in 10 minutes.

Many parents say teens with anxiety, depression may benefit from peer confidants at school
Three-quarters of parents in a new national poll think peers better understand teen challenges, compared to teachers or counselors in the school.

New discovery in breast cancer treatment
Researchers at the University of Adelaide have found new evidence about the positive role of androgens in breast cancer treatment with immediate implications for women with estrogen receptor-driven metastatic disease.

Lasers & molecular tethers create perfectly patterned platforms for tissue engineering
Researchers at the University of Washington have developed a technique to modify naturally occurring biological polymers with protein-based biochemical messages that affect cell behavior.

A new archaeology for the Anthropocene era
Scantily clad tomb raiders and cloistered scholars piecing together old pots - these are the kinds of stereotypes of archaeology that dominate public perception.

Eliminating microplastics in wastewater directly at the source
A research team from the Institut national de la recherche scientifique (INRS) has developed a process for the electrolytic treatment of wastewater that degrades microplastics at the source.

Green med diet cuts non-alcoholic fatty liver disease by half - Ben-Gurion U. study
Overall, the green MED diet produced dramatic reductions in fatty liver.

Synthesis of potent antibiotic follows unusual chemical pathway
Images of a protein involved in creating a potent antibiotic reveal the unusual first steps of the antibiotic's synthesis.

How cells move and don't get stuck
Theoretical physicists from Berlin teamed up with experimental physicists from Munich to determine the precise mechanics involved in cell motility.

Where COVID-19 hit hardest, sudden deaths outside the hospital increased
A new study comparing the incidence of sudden deaths occurring outside the hospital across New York City's highly diverse neighborhoods with the percentage of positive SARS-CoV-19 tests found that increased sudden deaths during the pandemic correlate to the extent of virus infection in a neighborhood.

UCI researchers: Climate change will alter the position of the Earth's tropical rain belt
In a study to be published Jan. 18 in Nature Climate Change, researchers at the University of California, Irvine describe future changes to the tropical rain belt with expected climate change.

Low-carbon policies can be 'balanced' to benefit small firms and average households - study
A review of ten types of policy used to reduce carbon suggests that some costs fall on those less able to bear them - but it also shows these policies can form the bedrock of a 'green recovery' if specifically designed and used in tandem.

Smart vaccine scheme quick to curb rabies threat in African cities
More people could be protected from life-threatening rabies thanks to an agile approach to dog vaccination using smart phone technology to spot areas of low vaccination coverage in real time.

Vermont's BIPOC drivers are most likely to have a run-in with police, study shows
Examining more than 800,000 police stops in Vermont between 2014 to 2019, researchers confirm that Vermont authorities stop, ticket, arrest and search Black drivers at a rate far beyond their share of the state's total driving population.

Primary care physicians account for a minority of spending on low-value care
Primary care physicians (PCPs) are seen as gatekeepers to reduce spending on low-value health care services, which have been estimated to cost the health care system up to $100 billion annually.

Low-carbon policies can be 'balanced' to benefit small firms and average households
A review of ten types of policy used to reduce carbon suggests that some costs fall on those less able to bear them - but it also shows these policies can form the bedrock of a 'green recovery' if specifically designed and used in tandem.

New method to assist fast-tracking of vaccines for pre-clinical tests
A new method to synthesize vaccines safely and quickly should see much faster pre-clinical testing to pursue strategies to combat novel pathogens, something the COVID pandemic has shown is necessary.

Fried food intake linked to heightened serious heart disease and stroke risk
Fried-food intake is linked to a heightened risk of major heart disease and stroke, finds a pooled analysis of the available research data, published online in the journal Heart.

The brain region responsible for self-bias in memory
A brain region involved in processing information about ourselves biases our ability to remember, according to new research published in JNeurosci.

'Babysitters' provide boost to offspring of elderly birds
Young Seychelles warblers fare better if their elderly parents have help raising them, according to new research from the University of East Anglia (UEA) and the University of Groningen.

A 'super-puff' planet like no other
A Canadian-led team of astronomers discovers that the core mass of exoplanet WASP-107b is much lower than previously thought possible for a gas-giant planet.

Latch, load and release: Elastic motion makes click beetles click, study finds
Click beetles can propel themselves more than 20 body lengths into the air, and they do so without using their legs.

Successive governments' approach to obesity policies has destined them to fail
Government obesity policies in England over the past three decades have largely failed because of problems with implementation, lack of learning from past successes or failures, and a reliance on trying to persuade individuals to change their behaviour rather than tackling unhealthy environments.

Timing is of the essence when treating brain swelling in mice
Researchers from the National Institutes of Health have discovered Jekyll and Hyde immune cells in the brain that ultimately help with brain repair but early after injury can lead to fatal swelling, suggesting that timing may be critical when administering treatment.

Stop global roll out of 5G networks until safety is confirmed, urges expert
We should err on the side of caution and stop the global roll out of 5G (fifth generation) telecoms networks until we are certain this technology is completely safe, urges an expert in an opinion piece published online in the Journal of Epidemiology & Community Health.

Simple, cheap test can help save lives from colorectal cancer
New research has demonstrated that a simple, cheap test can help identify who is at risk of developing colorectal cancer, aiding early diagnosis and potentially saving lives.

FGF23 hormone from red blood cell precursors promotes hematopoietic stem cell mobilization
A Kobe University research group have discovered that fibroblast growth factor-23 (FGF23) produced by erythroblasts (cells that are the precursors of red blood cells) promotes the movement of hematopoietic stem cells into the peripheral blood.

UN disaster aid is driven by humanitarian need rather than by strategic donor interests
A new study published in PNAS finds that aid provided by the United Nations (UN) in the aftermath of climate-related disasters is driven by humanitarian need rather than by strategic donor interests.

Fungal wearables and devices: biomaterials pave the way towards science fiction-like future
Fungi are capable of processing information in the same way as a computer.

A mathematical study describes how metastasis starts
A scientific study carried out by the Universidad Carlos III de Madrid (UC3M) and the Universidad Complutense de Madrid (UCM) has produced a mathematical description of the way in which a tumor invades the epithelial cells and automatically quantifies the progression of the tumor and the remaining cell islands after its progression.

Armouring anti-cancer T cells against immunosuppressants
New 'armoured' T cells attack cancer without being suppressed by drugs given to transplant patients to avoid organ rejection.

Money matters to happiness--perhaps more than previously thought
Money matters to happiness, perhaps more so than previously thought, according to research from Matthew Killingsworth of the University of Pennsylvania.

Proposing a new drug to treat tuberculosis utilizing state-of-the-art computer simulations
Research team lead by Toyohashi University of Technology have proposed a new drug to treat tuberculosis.

Researchers discover potential new therapy for chemotherapy-resistant breast cancer
Scientists have discovered a molecule that can selectively kill cells of a hard-to-treat subtype of breast cancer, which could lead to a new therapy.

NIH officials highlight COVID-19 vaccine facts, unknowns for healthcare providers
Healthcare providers must be able to explain the latest data supporting the safety and efficacy of vaccines for coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) so they can strongly encourage vaccination when appropriate while acknowledging that uncertainty and unknowns remain.

NUS engineers create 'smart' aerogel that turns air into drinking water
Researchers from NUS Engineering have developed a new aerogel that autonomously absorbs water from the atmosphere and then releases it effortlessly without any external power source.

Zebra stripes, leopard spots: frozen metal patterns defy conventional metallurgy
''Stripy zebra, spotty leopard...'' Pattern formation and pattern recognition entertains children and scientists alike.

Strong M-M' Pauli repulsion leads to repulsive metallophilicity
A research team led by Professor Chi-Ming CHE and Dr Jun YANG, from the Research Division for Chemistry and Department of Chemistry at the Faculty of Science of the University of Hong Kong, has resolved a long-standing fundamental problem in the field of metal-metal closed-shell interaction.

Cosmic beasts and where to find them
Two giant radio galaxies have been discovered with South Africa's powerful MeerKAT telescope.

What the lungfishes' genome teaches us about the vertebrates' conquest of land
The genome of the Australian lungfish is the largest sequenced animal genome and helps us to better understand the conquest of land by vertebrates - study led by evolutionary biologists from the University of Konstanz

Novel organoid models: Illuminating path to cervical cancers
How do tumors develop in the cervix? Many new details are now known about this question.

Parkinson's: Initial steps to show nerves their growth direction magnetically
One reason why nerve damage in the brain cannot regenerate easily is that the neurites do not know in which direction they should grow.

Of the honey bee dance
Honey bees are unique in that they not only alert their nestmates but have also evolved a symbolic communication in the form of a dance - a waggle dance.

No insect crisis in the Arctic - yet
No insect crisis in the Arctic - yet. Climate change is more pronounced in the Arctic than anywhere else on the planet, raising concerns about the ability of wildlife to cope with the new conditions.

Modulating helical nanostructures in liquid crystal phase by molecular design
Toyohashi University of Technology has successfully developed sulfur-containing liquid crystal (LC) dimer molecules, which exhibit a helical liquid crystal phase, over a wide temperature range.

A massive advance in spectrometry
Kanazawa University scientists use computer simulations of charged molecules to help improve the accuracy of mass spectrometers.

World's first test to accurately predict depression and bipolar disorder
University of South Australia scientists have developed the world's first test to accurately predict mood disorders in people, based on the levels of a specific protein found in the brain.

Robot learns fast but safe navigation strategy
A research group from the Active Intelligent System Laboratory (AISL) at Toyohashi University of Technology (TUT) has proposed a new framework for training mobile robots to quickly navigate while maintaining low collision rates.

Cyber-evolution: How computer science is harnessing the power of Darwinian transformation
A new study highlights the progress our machines have made in replicating evolutionary processes and what this could mean for engineering design, software refinement, gaming strategy, robotics and even medicine, while fostering a deeper insight into foundational issues in biological evolution.

Scientists produce the first in-vitro embryos from vitrified African lion oocytes
A team of scientists from the Leibniz Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research (Leibniz-IZW) in Germany, Givskud Zoo - Zootopia in Denmark and the University of Milan in Italy succeeded in producing the very first African lion in-vitro embryos after the vitrification of immature oocytes.

New tool removes chemotherapy drugs from water systems
'What goes in, must come out' is a familiar refrain.

CMOS-compatible 3D ferroelectric memory with ultralow power and high speed
POSTECH Professor Jang-Sik Lee's research team develops ferroelectric NAND flash memory.

College classrooms are still chilly for women, as men speak more
Men speak 1.6 times more often than women in college classrooms, revealing how gender inequities regarding classroom participation still exist, according to a Dartmouth study.

Carbon pricing's disappointing effect on the pace of technological change
In order to achieve the goals of the Paris Agreement, the world must reach net-zero carbon emissions by 2050.

Healing ceramic electrolyte degraded by Li dendrite
Our research team has investigated the effect of post-annealing for healing Li garnet solid electrolyte degraded by the growth of Li dendrites.

A trap for nematodes
Filariae, sometimes up to 70 centimeters long nematodes, can set up residence in their host quite tenaciously and cause serious infectious diseases in the tropics.

Coercive collection of DNA is unethical and damaging to the future of medical research
The compulsory collection of DNA being undertaken in some parts of the world is not just unethical, but risks affecting people's willingness to donate biological samples and thus contribute to the advancement of medical knowledge and the development of new treatments, says a paper in the European Journal of Human Genetics.

Scientists streamline process for controlling spin dynamics
Marking a major achievement in the field of spintronics, researchers at Brookhaven National Laboratory and Yale University have demonstrated the ability to control spin dynamics in magnetic materials by altering their thickness.

High-ranking male hyenas have better chances with females because they are less "stressed"
Scientists from the Leibniz-IZW have found that interacting with other males is more ''stressful'' for low-ranking than for high-ranking male spotted hyenas.

Increased blood flow during sleep tied to critical brain function
Our brains experience significant changes in blood flow and neural activity during sleep, according to Penn State researchers.

Tracking the evolution Maxwell knots
A new study published in EPJ C by Alexei Morozov and Nikita Tselousov, from the Institute of Theoretical and Experimental Physics and the Institute of Transmission Problems, Moscow, respectively, details peculiar solutions to the Maxwell equations--so-called Maxwell knots.

RUDN University and RLT scientists: Light, magnetic field, and ultrasound could help fight COVID-19
A team of researchers from RUDN University and RLT suggested restoring normal levels of lymphocytes in patients with COVID-19 and other viral diseases by subjecting them to the combined influence of light, magnetic field, and ultrasound.

A master cancer gene hijacks a 'molecular crowbar' to make breast cancer cells invasive
Researchers investigated how cancer genes lead to the breakdown of the capsule that prevents cancerous cells from invading the surrounding healthy tissues and - find a hijacked ''molecular crowbar''.

Purely organic hole transporter
Durable, high-performing perovskite solar cells also require durable, high-performing charge-transporting layers.

COVID-19 has multiple faces
Scientists from the German Center for Neurodegenerative Diseases (DZNE) and the University of Bonn have found that COVID-19 comprises at least five different variants.

Researchers develop sustainable catalysis process
Acetals are important chemical compounds that are used, for example, in the production of certain medical agents.

Why remdesivir does not fully stop the coronavirus
Their results explain why the drug has a rather weak effect

Direct quantification of topological protection in photonic edge states at telecom wavelengths
Photonic topological insulators are currently at the forefront of on-chip photonic research due to their potential for loss-free information transport.

Sensei RNA: Iron fist in a velvet glove
Scientific pursuit has the habit of offering chance discoveries if we think about things differently.

As the American hemp industry grows, so does our understanding of hemp diseases
As hemp begins to reemerge as an important crop in the United States, scientists are beginning research into the diseases that might prevent the crop from flourishing.

Rethinking spin chemistry from a quantum perspective
Summary Researchers at Osaka City University use quantum superposition states and Bayesian inference to create a quantum algorithm, easily executable on quantum computers, that accurately and directly calculates energy differences between the electronic ground and excited spin states of molecular systems in polynomial time.

E-cigarettes stress lungs, impair protein function
E-cigarette exposure stresses and inflames the lungs of rats, compromising important quality control proteins, according to new research.
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