Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

February 11, 2021
The Lancet: New report details devastating impact of the Trump administration's health-harming policies, calls for sweeping reforms
The first comprehensive assessment of the health effects of Donald Trump's presidency is published today in The Lancet revealing devastating impacts on every aspect of health in the USA.

Chinese people may be more susceptible to obesity-related health risks than other racial, ethnic groups
Chinese people are more likely to face high blood pressure and other health risks as a result of higher body mass index (BMI) and waist circumference than people from other racial and ethnic groups, according to a new study published in the Endocrine Society's Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism.

Mail-in sperm testing system just as reliable in predicting male fertility as tests performed in clinic settings
Keck Medicine of USC study shows that semen can accurately be tested up to 52 hours after being collected, offering men greater flexibility in how they provide sperm specimens

Lifestyle changes in pregnant women affected babies' genes
A study led by researchers at Lund University in Sweden showed a connection between lifestyle intervention in pregnant women with obesity and epigenetic alterations in the baby.

How shared partisanship leads to social media connections
MIT scholars have found that Twitter users are three times more likely to follow other Twitter accounts they are aligned with in political terms, showing how much partisan identification itself drives social groupings.

Origami-inspired antenna technology for use in small satellites
In a brand-new study, scientists from Korea and the USA have revealed a novel antenna design for use in CubeSat nanosatellites using state-of-the-art communications systems like 6G communications.

New guidance addresses structural racism in racial and ethnic disparities research
Scientific research on racial and ethnic disparities must shift to reflect the significant role and impact of structural racism.

Why portraying humans as healthy machines can backfire
Confronting consumers with expectations to be ''machine-like'' can be risky if not aligned with their abilities.

Patient education program with mental health component reduces cardiovascular disease risks
People who participated in an integrated mental and physical health patient education program maintained significant improvements on seven of nine health measures six months after the program's conclusion.

LGBT+ workers experience higher levels of conflict at work, shows new report
The CIPD is today launching a new research report, co-authored by the University of Bath's Dr Luke Fletcher, to highlight how LGBT+ workers tend to have a more negative experience of work.

Misuse of opioid drugs during pregnancy could have lasting impact on child's development
Researchers at the University of Maryland School of Medicine now have preliminary but striking evidence that suggests that such exposure can cause long-lasting impairment in the brain's ability to process sensory information.

A new quantum switch for electronics
A Russian physicist and his international colleagues studied a quantum point contact (QCP) between two conductors with external oscillating fields applied to the contact.

Play and meaty food reduce hunting by cats
Domestic cats hunt wildlife less if owners play with them daily and feed them a meat-rich food, new research shows.

Handgun ownership associated with firearm suicide
Among firearm-owning individuals who died by suicide, handgun ownership was associated with greater odds of having died by self-inflicted gunshot wound rather than by another method, according to a Rutgers researcher.

Wake-up call for neural stem cells
A brain enzyme activates dormant neural stem cells, revealing how defects in its gene could lead to neurodevelopmental disorders.

Scent detection dogs can identify individuals infected with COVID-19
Scent detection dogs can identify individuals infected with the COVID-19 virus according to a new article in the Journal of Osteopathic Medicine. Findings indicate the dogs could be used to screen for infections in hospitals, senior care facilities, schools, universities, airports, large sporting events or concerts.

Artificial emotional intelligence: a safer, smarter future with 5G and emotion recognition
The combination of new 5G communication technologies with AI-based systems are ushering in a ''smart generation'' of vehicles, drones, and even entire cities.

Gene variants increase risk of Addison's disease
Variants of nine genes increase the risk of developing Addison's disease, a rare disease in which the immune system attacks the adrenal glands.

Genomic test helps estimate risk of prostate cancer metastasis, death
A commercially available genomic test may help oncologists better determine which patients with recurrent prostate cancer may benefit from hormone therapy, according to new research from the Johns Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Center and 15 other medical centers.

Cold sores: Discovery reveals how stress, illness and even sunburn trigger flareups
The finding could lead to new ways to prevent cold sores and herpes-related eye disease from reoccurring, the researchers report.

Ionic liquid uniformly delivers chemotherapy to tumors while destroying cancerous tissue
A Mayo Clinic team, led by Rahmi Oklu, M.D., Ph.D., a vascular and interventional radiologist at Mayo Clinic, in collaboration with Samir Mitragotri, Ph.D., of Harvard University, report the development of a new ionic liquid formulation that killed cancer cells and allowed uniform distribution of a chemotherapy drug into liver tumors and other solid tumors in the lab.

Machine-learning how to create better AAV gene delivery vehicles
A new study initiated by Wyss Core Faculty member George Church's Synthetic Biology team at Harvard's Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering, and driven by a collaboration with Google Research has applied a computational deep learning approach to design highly diverse capsid variants from the AAV2 serotype across DNA sequences encoding a key protein segment that plays a role in immune-recognition as well as infection of target tissues.

Aggressive brain tumor mapped in genetic, molecular detail
A new study led by Washington University School of Medicine in St.

Brain activity can reveal the severity of autistic traits
A team of researchers from Russia and Israel applied a new algorithm to classify the severity of autistic personality traits by studying subjects' brain activity.

Family ties explain mysterious social life of coral gobies
The strange social structure of tiny fish called emerald coral gobies may be explained by family loyalty, new research shows.

Artificial intelligence generates new diversity of AAV capsids for broader gene therapy
Research in Nature Biotechnology demonstrates the use of machine learning to generate unprecedented diversity of functional AAV capsids, towards evading immune system neutralization to allow more patients to benefit from gene therapies.

Tiny population of neurons may have big role in depression
Medical College of Georgia scientists and their colleagues report the first evidence that, not short-term stress, like a series of tough college exams, rather chronic, unpredictable stress like that which erupts in our personal and professional lives, induces changes in the function of AgRP neurons that may contribute to depression

Highly efficient metasurface poised to improve communication and biosensing
Researchers have created a new plasmonic metasurface that achieves record high light efficiency over the entire centimeter-scale metasurface.

Tuning the circadian clock, boosting rhythms may be key to future treatments and medicines
Subconsciously, our bodies keep time for us through an ancient means - the circadian clock.

Wafer-scale production of graphene-based photonic devices
Graphene Flagship researchers have devised a wafer-scale fabrication method that paves the way to the next generation of telecom and datacom devices.

Nightly sleep of five hours, less, may increase risk of dementia, death among older adults
New research from investigators at Brigham and Women's Hospital explores the connection between sleep disturbances and deficiencies among older adults and risk of dementia and death, finding that risk of dementia was double among participants who reported getting less than five hours of sleep compared to those who reported 7-8 hours of sleep per night.

Study finds even the common house sparrow is declining
A new study by Cornell Lab of Ornithology scientists aims to clarify the status of the non-native European House Sparrow, using 21 years of citizen science data from the Cornell Lab's Project FeederWatch.

Study identifies never-before-seen dual function in enzyme critical for cancer growth
In developing therapies for hard-to-treat breast and ovarian cancers in patients with BRCA gene mutations, scientists aim to identify ways to keep cancer cells from using DNA break repair pathways.

The time to take low-carbon transition risks seriously is now
A successful climate policy means preparing for unintended adverse impacts, such as job losses in declining energy sectors or potential environmental impacts of scaling up renewables.

Compounds from apples may boost brain function
Natural compounds found in apples and other fruits may help stimulate the production of new brain cells, which may have implications for learning and memory, according to a new study in mice published in Stem Cell Reports.

Study: New prostate cancer test could avoid unnecessary biopsies
A urine test based on University of Michigan Rogel Cancer Center research could have avoided one third of unnecessary prostate cancer biopsies while failing to detect only a small number of cancers, according to a validation study that included more than 1,500 patients.

New insights to past ecosystems are now available based on pollen and plant traits
Researchers have mined and combined information from two databases to link pollen and key plant traits to generate confidence in the ability to reconstruct past ecosystem services.

Biosensors monitor plant well-being in real time
Researchers at Linköping University, Sweden, have developed biosensors that make it possible to monitor sugar levels in real time deep in the plant tissues - something that has previously been impossible.

Get a load of ZIF! Better delivery of cancer immunotherapy
An antibody loaded onto a porous metal organic framework is released by the acidic environment that surrounds tumors, avoiding the adverse effects of administering the antibody alone.

Stirring up conflicts in tumour cells
With two commercially available inhibitors, the cell cycle of the cancer cells in the childhood tumour neuroblastoma can be disrupted at a key point causing tumour cell death.

Which conspiracy theory do you believe in?
Everyone believes in at least one conspiracy theory, according to conspiracy researchers.

Vibrating 2D materials
Two-dimensional materials hold out hope for many technical applications. An international research team now has determined for the first time how strongly 2D materials vibrate when electronically excited with light.

Coronavirus test from a suitcase
A portable suitcase could aid quick diagnosis of SARS-CoV-2 cases in Africa.

Neandertal genes alter neurodevelopment in modern human brain organoids
Building modern human brain organoids with the Neanderthal variant of a gene has provided a glimpse into the way substitutions in this gene impacted our species' evolution.

Capturing free-space optical light for high-speed wifi
Visible and infrared light can carry more data than radio waves, but has always been confined to a hard-wired, fiber-optic cable.

RUDN University mathematician suggested a scheme for solving telegraph equations
A mathematician from RUDN University suggested a stable difference scheme for solving inverse problems for elliptic-telegraph and differential equations that are used to describe biological, physical, and sociological processes.

Vaporised crusts of Earth-like planets found in dying stars
Remnants of planets with Earth-like crusts have been discovered in the atmospheres of four nearby white dwarf stars by University of Warwick astronomers, offering a glimpse of the planets that may have once orbited them up to billions of years ago.

Scientists discovered new physical effects important for the ITER reactor operation
The energy of the future lies in the area of the controlled thermonuclear fusion.

Protein sequences provide clues to how SARS-CoV-2 infects cells
Researchers at EMBL Heidelberg have identified sequences in human proteins that might be used by SARS-CoV-2 to infect cells.

Proper fit of face masks is more important than material, study suggests
A team of researchers studying the effectiveness of different types of face masks has found that in order to provide the best protection against COVID-19, the fit of a mask is as important, or more important, than the material it is made of.

Self-testing trebles HIV testing rate amongst trans people in randomised trial
HIV self-testing could reduce the time between HIV infection and HIV diagnosis amongst trans people when compared to standard testing services, suggests new research in EClinicalMedicine. The project was a collaboration between the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine (LSHTM), University College London (UCL), and the Medical Research Council Clinical Trials Unit.

Learning by observation reduces cognitive bias, research suggests
Research suggests that observing others' decision-making can teach people to make better decisions themselves.

Smartphone app to change your personality
How quickly can personality traits be modified? An international research team led by the University of Zurich has shown that daily use of a smartphone app can lead to desired personality changes within three months.

A study analyses breakfast-related advertising in Mediterranean countries
According to the Breakfast Food Advertisements in Mediterranean Countries: Products' Sugar Content in Adverts from 2015 to 2019 report produced by UOC Faculty of Information and Communication Sciences professor and researcher, Mireia Montaña, the majority of breakfast products marketed for children contain three times as much sugar as those aimed at adults, influencing their choices for one of the most important meals of the day.

Swirlonic super particles baffle physicists
We report a novel state of active matter--a swirlonic state.

New study reveals biodiversity important at regional scales
New research shows that biodiversity is important not just at the traditional scale of short-term plot experiments--in which ecologists monitor the health of a single meadow, forest grove, or pond after manipulating its species counts--but when measured over decades and across regional landscapes as well.

No new mountains formed during Earth's middle age, halting life's evolution for an eon
During the Proterozoic, Earth grew no taller - the tectonic processes that form mountains stalled, leaving continents devoid of high mountains for nearly 1 billion years, according to a new study.

Researchers find delirium in hospitalized patients linked to mortality, disability
Delirium, a form of acute brain dysfunction, is widespread in critically ill patients in lower resourced hospitals, and the duration of delirium predicted both mortality and disability at six months after discharge, according to a study published in PLOS ONE.

Facts on the ground: How microplastics in the soil contribute to environmental pollution
Plastic is a major threat to the environment. Of particular ecological risk is its manifestation as microplastics (<5 mm in size) in the agricultural environment.

Study predicts UK COVID-19 vaccination program will very quickly reduce deaths but more slowly bring down hospital and ICU admissions
A new modelling study published in Anaesthesia (a journal of the Association of Anaesthetists) shows that the UK's coronavirus vaccination program is already reducing daily deaths.

National trends in us otolaryngology surgical volume early in COVID-19 pandemic
Changes in otolaryngology surgical volumes in the United States early on in the COVID-19 pandemic are described in this study.

How do our memories take shape?
Your brain is constantly evaluating which aspects of your experiences to either remember for later, ignore, or forget.

New research identifies biological causes of muscle weakness in later life
A new largescale genetic analysis has found biological mechanisms that contribute to making people more susceptible to muscle weakness in later life, finding that diseases such as osteoarthritis and diabetes may play a large role in susceptibility.

Low-income middle-aged African-American women with hypertension are likely to suffer from depression
Low-income middle-aged African-American women with high blood pressure very commonly suffer from depression and should be better screened for this serious mental health condition.

New study gives hope of eliminating mother-to-baby transmission of HIV
Anti-retroviral drugs are a vital tool in the prevention and treatment of HIV.

Emissions of banned ozone-depleting substance back on decline
After a mysterious and sharp increase between 2012 and 2017 that could be traced to eastern China global emissions of a potent (and banned) substance notorious for depleting the Earth's ozone layer - the protective barrier that absorbs the Sun's harmful UV rays - have fallen rapidly in recent years and are now as low as never before since measurements began in this region in 2008, according to new atmospheric analyses published in Nature today.

SRC-3 is a novel regulator of human immune T regulatory cells
SRC-3, a prognostic marker for aggressive human breast and other cancers, also regulates human immune T regulatory cells (Tregs), which are involved in fighting cancer.

Recommendations for regional action to combat marine plastic pollution
Millions of tonnes of plastic waste find their way into the ocean every year.

A plant's nutrient-sensing abilities can modulate its response to environmental stress
Understanding how plants respond to stressful environmental conditions is crucial to developing effective strategies for protecting important agricultural crops from a changing climate.

Multi-model approach could help farmers prepare for, contain PEDV outbreaks
Researchers used a three-model approach to trace the between-farm spread of porcine epidemic diarrhea virus (PEDV), as well as to analyze the efficacy of different control strategies in these scenarios.

Finding the best targets to improve crop yield by following CO2 journey inside the leaf
A team of scientists have measured the relative importance of the different obstacles that carbon dioxide (CO2) encounters in its voyage from the atmosphere to the interior of plant cells, where it is converted into sugars.

Protected areas see continued deforestation but at a reduced rate, OSU research shows
A survey of more than 18,000 land parcels spanning 2 million square miles across 63 countries shows that a ''protected area'' designation reduces the rate of deforestation but does not prevent it.

Nanowire could provide a stable, easy-to-make superconducting transistor
MIT researchers developed a superconducting nanowire that could enable efficient, easy-to-make electronics.

Study: Reparations for slavery could have reduced COVID-19 infections and deaths in US
Study: monetary reparations for Black descendants of people enslaved in the United States could have cut SARS-CoV-2 transmission and COVID-19 rates both among Black individuals and the population at large by as much as 68 percent.

US cities segregated not just by where people live, but where they travel daily
An analysis of 133 million tweets found that city-dwellers stay racially segregated as they eat, drink, shop, socialize and travel each day, demonstrating even deeper segregation than previously understood.

- How we sleep and experience psychological symptoms during pandemic
A study shows that during the first confinement, day-to-day variations in subjective sleep quality influenced the occurrence of mental and physical health complaints, and that these effects were linked to daily reports of COVID-19 related deaths.

A new way of forming planets
Scientists of the Universities of Zurich and Cambridge, associated with the Swiss National Centre of Competence in Research PlanetS, suggest a new explanation for the abundance in intermediate-mass exoplanets - a long-standing puzzle of Astronomy.

Hubble uncovers concentration of small black holes
Scientists were expecting to find an intermediate-mass black hole at the heart of the globular cluster NGC 6397, but instead they found evidence of a concentration of smaller black holes lurking there.

The songs of fin whales offer new avenue for seismic studies of the oceanic crust
The songs of fin whales can be used for seismic imaging of the oceanic crust, providing scientists a novel alternative to conventional surveying.

New study suggests better approach in search for COVID-19 drugs
Research from the University of Kent, Goethe-University in Frankfurt am Main, and the Philipps-University in Marburg has provided crucial insights into the biological composition of SARS-CoV-2, the cause of COVID-19, revealing vital clues for the discovery of antiviral drugs.

Small is big: the need for a holistic approach to manage cerebral small vessel disease
Cerebral small vessel disease (SVD) is a complex brain disease that presents as a wide range of symptoms, starting with mild neurological and physical indications that worsen with age.

Affordable CRISPR app reveals unintended mutations at site of CRISPR gene repair
Scientists have developed an affordable, downloadable app that scans for potential unintended mistakes when CRISPR is used to repair mutations that cause disease.

One dose of COVID-19 vaccine provokes strong immune response in those previously infected
Researchers report preliminary evidence that people previously infected with COVID-19 responded very strongly to one dose of the Pfizer vaccine, regardless of when they were infected and whether or not they had detectable antibodies against COVID-19 prior to receiving the vaccine.

Spinal fluid of people with Alzheimer's risk gene signals inflammation
People who have a gene variant associated with an increased risk of developing Alzheimer's disease also tend to have changes in the fluid around their brain and spinal cord that are detectable years before symptoms arise, according to new research from Duke Health.

Pigs show potential for 'remarkable' level of behavioral, mental flexibility in new study
A study involving two different pig species demonstrated that the animals are capable of remarkable behavioral and mental flexibility.

Humanity's best friend
For some 15,000 years, dogs have been our hunting partners, workmates, helpers and companions.

Common pipistrelle bats attracted to wind turbines
One of the most abundant bats in Europe may be attracted to wind turbines, a new study shows.

Astronomers confirm solar system's most distant known object is indeed Farfarout
With the help of the international Gemini Observatory, a Program of NSF's NOIRLab, and other ground-based telescopes, astronomers have confirmed that a faint object discovered in 2018 and nicknamed ''Farfarout'' is indeed the most distant object yet found in our Solar System.

Routine blood tests could be key to stopping the silent killer of liver disease
New research has shown that results of blood tests routinely performed by GPs everywhere contain a hidden fingerprint that can identify people silently developing potentially fatal liver cirrhosis.

Pragmatic solutions to counteract regressive effects of COVID-19 pandemic for women in academic oncology
How pandemic-related disruptions may adversely impact progress toward a gender-balanced workforce in academic oncology is described in this article, which also offers possible solutions to mitigate the problem in this specialty.

Combination of pine scent and ozone as super source of particulate emissions
Scientists have managed to figure out why conifer forests produce so many fine particles into the atmosphere.

Insilico announces MolGrow -- a new generative model for hierarchical molecular generation
Insilico Presented Its New Molecular Generation Model at the 35th AAAI Conference on Artificial Intelligence

New ACIP Adult Immunization Schedule recommends changes to several vaccines, includes interim recomm
The Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) has released its 2021 Recommended Adult Immunization Schedule that includes changes to several vaccines including influenza, hepatitis A, human papillomavirus (HPV); and the measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) vaccine.

A new strategy to destroy cancer cells using magnetic nanoparticles and fields
The scientists analyzed how magnetic nanoparticles can be manipulated in in vitro conditions to achieve a selective antitumor effect.

Hope for children with bow hunter syndrome
DALLAS - Feb. 11, 2021 - Fusing the neck's top two vertebrae can prevent repeat strokes in children with bow hunter syndrome, a rare condition that affects a handful of U.S. pediatric patients each year, UT Southwestern researchers suggest in a recent study.

Once bitten, twice shy: the neurology of why one bad curry could put us off for life
A negative experience with food usually leaves us unable to stomach the thought of eating that particular dish again.

Want to hire more women? Expand your short list
As more male-dominated industries look for ways to hire women, new Cornell University research offers employers a simple solution -- make your initial job candidate short list longer.

Finnish study shows how the uncertainty in the Bitcoin market responds to cyberattacks
A University of Vaasa researcher, Klaus Grobys, investigates how the uncertainty in the Bitcoin market reacts if Bitcoin is subject to hacking incidents - or so-called cyberattacks.

Study: Facing heat illness, dehydration risks, marching bands need access to athletic trainers
A KU study measured marching band members' core temperatures, fluid intake and behaviors through high-tech methods to determine their risks of heat illness.

Insights into the role of DNA repair and Huntington's disease gene mutation open new avenues for drug discovery
DNA repair is an important factor that determines how early or late Huntington's disease (HD) occurs in individuals who carry the expanded CAG repeat in the HTT gene that causes HD.

Echocardiographic screening for rheumatic heart disease in Nepal
An international research team led by Thomas Pilgrim of the Department of Cardiology at Inselspital has published a much-noticed study on early detection of rheumatic heart disease (RHD) in «JAMA cardiology».

Use of mobile stroke units improves clinical outcomes
STEMOs have been serving Berlin for ten years. The specialized stroke emergency response vehicles allow physicians to start treating stroke patients before they reach hospital.

Diversity in policing can improve police-civilian interactions
Black and Hispanic officers make far fewer stops and arrests and use less force than white officers, especially against Black civilians, when facing otherwise common circumstances.

Gender gap: Women represent two-thirds of doctorates, only one-third of academic jobs
Women today represent two-thirds of all Canadian doctorates in archaeology, but only one-third of Canadian tenure-stream faculty.

STING activation reduces graft-versus-host disease in a mouse model
MUSC Hollings Cancer Center researcher Yongxia Wu, Ph.D., identified a new target molecule in the fight against graft-versus-host disease.

Small mammals climb higher to flee warming temperatures in the Rockies
The golden-mantled ground squirrel is one of the most photographed animals in the Rocky Mountains.

Rebuilding soil microbiomes in high-tunnel agricultural systems focus of study
The presence of high salt and nitrogen concentrations in high- tunnel soils may make it more challenging to rebuild a healthy soil microbiome following a soil-clearing event, according to microbial ecologists in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences.

Seismic surveys using fin whale songs
Fin whale song - one of the strongest animal calls in the ocean - can be used as a seismic source for probing the structure of Earth's crust at the seafloor, researchers report.

Women better at reading minds than men - new study
Psychologists at the University of Bath, Cardiff, and London have developed the first ever 'mind-reading questionnaire' to assess how well people understand what others are really thinking.

To help keep cats from killing wildlife, add more meat and play to their day
Domestic cats are a major threat to wild species, including birds and small mammals.

SARS-CoV-2 screening using CRISPR-based methods
This observational study assessed CRISPR-based methods for screening to detect SARS-CoV-2 among asymptomatic college students.

Ebola is a master of disguise
Ebola is so pernicious because it pulls a fast one on the body, disguising itself as a dying cell.

Learn what you live? Study finds watching others can reduce decision bias
New research finds first evidence that watching and learning from others can help reduce bias and improve decision-making.

Bringing bad proteins back into the fold
A study led by UT Southwestern has identified a mechanism that controls the activity of proteins known as chaperones, which guide proteins to fold into the right shapes.

TalTech scientists developed novel immune diagnostics of multiple sclerosis
Multiple sclerosis (MS) is the most common neurological disease in young adults, affecting more than 2 million individuals worldwide, with about 1500 cases in Estonia.

Climate research: rapid formation of iodic particles over the Arctic
When sea ice melts and the water surface increases, more iodine-containing vapours rise from the sea.

Big data reveal threats to minorities policed by white and male officers
Using a dataset on daily patrols and enforcement activities of officers in the Chicago Police Department (CPD) - an agency that has undergone substantial diversification in recent decades - researchers report Black officers used force less often than white officers during the three-year period studied, and women used force less often than men.

A new perceptually-consistent method for MSI visualization
Skoltech scientists have proposed a Mass Spectrometry Imaging (MSI) method leveraging the unique features of human vision

Risk factors associated with COVID-19 ICU admission or death in Argentina
A nationwide analysis of data from the first 6 months of the COVID-19 pandemic in Argentina has identified factors associated with increased risk of death or admission to an intensive care unit (ICU) due to the disease, including older age, male sex, coma, seizures, and underlying comorbidities.

UMass Amherst team helps demonstrate spontaneous quantum error correction
Published by the journal Nature, research co-authored by University of Massachusetts Amherst physicist Chen Wang, graduate students Jeffrey Gertler and Shruti Shirol, and postdoctoral researcher Juliang Li takes a step toward building a fault-tolerant quantum computer.

At least 50% of COVID-19 infections come from people who aren't showing symptoms
A new study out of the University of Chicago has found that during the initial wave of the COVID-19 outbreak in New York City, only 1 in 5 to 1 in 7 cases of the virus was symptomatic.

Prediabetes may be linked to worse brain health
For the study, published in the journal Diabetes, Obesity and Metabolism, researchers analysed data from the UK Biobank of 500,000 people aged 58 years on average, and found that people with higher than normal blood sugar levels were 42% more likely to experience cognitive decline over an average of four years, and were 54% more likely to develop vascular dementia over an average of eight years (although absolute rates of both cognitive decline and dementia were low).

The politics of synonyms
A team of researchers at Carnegie Mellon University found people are more successful at identifying language associated with Republican speech than Democratic speech patterns.

Implant improves balance, movement and quality of life for people with inner ear disorder
Johns Hopkins Medicine researchers have shown that they can facilitate walking, relieve dizziness and improve quality of life in patients with BVH by surgically implanting a stimulator that electrically bypasses malfunctioning areas of the inner ear and partially restores the sensation of balance.

Chemotherapy and hearing loss: Until now, an unquantified risk
Researchers conduct largest-ever study of cisplatin-induced hearing loss in pediatric patients.

Researchers find parallels in spread of brain cancer in mammals, zebrafish
Virginia Tech scientists have identified a new zebrafish model that could help advance glioblastoma multiforme research.

Mexico's poor have little luck obtaining opioids intended for palliative care
Despite a Mexican government initiative to improve access to prescription opioids among palliative care patients, the country has seen only a marginal increase in dispensing levels, and inequities in dispensing have left many of the nation's poorest residents without comfort in their final days.

New machine learning theory raises questions about nature of science
A novel computer algorithm, or set of rules, that accurately predicts the orbits of planets in the solar system could be adapted to better predict and control the behavior of the plasma that fuels fusion facilities designed to harvest on Earth the fusion energy that powers the sun and stars.
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