Current Activities News and Events

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Global mapping projects aid humanitarian organisations
In disaster management and the implementation of the UN Sustainability Development Goals, free digital world maps like OpenStreetMap open up new possibilities to coordinate aid interventions and carry out sustainability projects. The required mapping data are collected by volunteer mappers either locally or on the basis of satellite images. An international team of researchers led by geoinformation scientists based at Heidelberg University is studying the evolution of humanitarian mapping and its repercussions on OpenStreetMap. (2021-02-17)

Clues for improving sleep in visually impaired athletes
Researchers from the University of Tsukuba have found that approximately one-third of a group of visually impaired athletes had sleep disorders. A later wake-up time and stress regarding interpersonal relationships in competition activities were related to the rate of sleep disorders. Addressing these factors may be key in improving sleep quality in this population. (2021-02-14)

Risk analysis helps contend with uncertainty of in-person activities
People now have access to better real-time information about COVID-19 infection and transmission rates, but they still have to decide what is safe to do. A new model co-authored by mathematician John McCarthy at Washington University in St. Louis helps to contend with the uncertainty. (2021-01-28)

Scientists show impact of human activity on bird species
Scientists have shown where bird species would exist in the absence of human activity under research that could provide a new approach to setting conservation priorities. (2021-01-25)

Study shows meaningful lockdown activity is more satisfying than busyness
With much of the world practicing varying degrees of social distancing and lockdown, researchers have been investigating the key to happiness in isolation. (2021-01-11)

Vanderbilt researchers discover strong correlation between partisanship and social mobility during COVID-19 pandemic
According to many medical experts, reduced social mobility - defined here as social contact and travel within and among communities - is a necessary factor to contain the spread of COVID-19. (2020-12-11)

Political partisanship has had outsized influence on individual social mobility during COVID-19 pand
In the United States, political partisanship has played a much stronger role in individuals' decisions to limit their social mobility during the COVID-19 pandemic than the local incidence of the disease in their own (2020-12-11)

Program reduces social isolation among middle-aged and older adults
An existing service in the North West of England called Community Connectors, which enables adults to access social activities within their community, can help reduce loneliness and social isolation, according to an analysis published in Health & Social Care in the Community. (2020-12-09)

Financial penalties imposed on large pharmaceutical firms for illegal activities
The UNC Charlotte study examined financial penalties imposed by government agencies using a sample of 26 large pharmaceutical firms over 13 years. Results indicated that 22 firms (85%) were penalized for illegal activities with most firms engaging in illegal activities for four or more years. Total penalties imposed during this period were $33 billion. The most common penalties were pricing violations, off-label marketing, and kickbacks. Four firms had no penalties assessed during the period. (2020-11-17)

???New insights can foster development of natural and safer fungicides
In a recent study published in PhytoFrontiers journal, plant pathologists confirmed that 13 natural and semi-synthetic glucosinolate derivatives are efficient fungicides alone or when used in combination against widespread genetically distant species of fungal plant pathogens. Combinations of these compounds showed strong synergistic fungitoxic effects. (2020-11-13)

Strenuous work during pregnancy increases likelihood of high birth weight
For the first time, researchers have attributed an understudied adverse fetal outcome to the strenuousness of an expectant mother's job. The study, 'Maternal and fetal health effects of working during pregnancy' is authored by Muzhe Yang, professor of economics at Lehigh University and Dhaval Dave, professor of economics at Bentley University, and has been published in the Review of Economics of the Household. (2020-11-10)

Teens who participate in extracurriculars, get less screen time, have better mental health
A new study from UBC researchers finds that teens, especially girls, have better mental health when they spend more time taking part in extracurricular activities, like sports and art, and less time in front of screens. (2020-11-02)

Study raises questions about role of leisure activity in dementia
Studies have suggested that taking part in leisure activities such as playing cards or gardening may be associated with a lower risk of developing dementia. But a new study found no association between taking part in leisure activities at age 56 and the risk of dementia over the next 18 years. The study is published in the October 28, 2020, online issue of Neurology®, the medical journal of the American Academy of Neurology. (2020-10-28)

Physical activity and sleep in adults with arthritis
A new study published in Arthritis Care & Research has examined patterns of 24-hour physical activity and sleep among patients with rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, and knee osteoarthritis. (2020-10-07)

Scientists are more specialized in larger and interdisciplinary teams
The roles of scientists change as research teams become more interdisciplinary and larger, finds new research from ESMT Berlin. Henry Sauermann, Professor of Strategy at ESMT Berlin, and Prof. Carolin Haeussler from the University of Passau found that division of labor increased with the size of the team, meaning a higher proportion of team members specialized in fewer tasks, sometimes only contributing to one activity. However, generalist members, which are less specialized and contribute to multiple activities, did not disappear completely. (2020-10-07)

Cortex-wide variation of neuronal cellular energy levels depending on the sleep-wake states
The brain is assumed to exert homeostatic functions to always keep the cellular energy status constant, this has not been proven. Researchers at Tokyo Metropolitan Institute of Medical Science discovered that cortical neuronal intracellular concentrations of ATP, the major cellular energy metabolite, greatly decreased during REM sleep, despite a simultaneous increase in cerebral hemodynamics for energy supply, compared with waking in mice. These indicate that cerebral energy metabolism may not always meet neuronal energy demands. (2020-10-07)

Poor cognitive performance predicts impairment in activities of daily living years later
Subtle differences in cognition may help identify individuals at risk for becoming dependent years later upon others to complete daily activities, such as managing medications or finances and other essential activities. (2020-09-30)

Theater improvisation techniques show promising results for science classroom engagement
A researcher at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC) has developed a unique method to improve class participation in a graduate-level thermodynamics course by incorporating theater improvisation activities in the classroom. (2020-09-25)

Camera traps show impact of recreational activity on wildlife
The COVID-19 pandemic has fired up interest in outdoor activities in our parks and forests. Now a new UBC study highlights the need to be mindful of how these activities may affect wildlife living in protected areas. All wildlife tended to avoid places that were recently visited by recreational users. And they avoided mountain bikers and motorized vehicles significantly more than they did hikers and horseback riders. (2020-09-24)

The key to happiness: Friends or family?
Think spending time with your kids and spouse is the key to your happiness? You may actually be happier getting together with your friends, a new SMU study finds. (2020-09-17)

Vibration device makes homes 'smart' by tracking appliances
To boost efficiency in typical households - where people forget to take wet clothes out of washing machines, retrieve hot food from microwaves and turn off dripping faucets - Cornell University researchers have developed a single device that can track 17 types of appliances using vibrations. (2020-09-09)

Expanding researchers' knowledge of the microbial defense toolkit
A new study identifies a wide array of previously unknown molecular functions and enzymatic activities microbes use to protect against viral threats. (2020-08-27)

Discovering the mechanism of brain vascular pathfinding during development
A research team led by Dr. DU Jiulin of the Institute of Neuroscience, Center for Excellence in Brain Science and Intelligence Technology (CEBSIT), Chinese Academy of Sciences, has revealed that Ca2+ activities mediated by mechanosensitive Piezo1 channels regulate the pathfinding of growing brain vessels in larval zebrafish. (2020-08-21)

To bond with nature, kids need solitary activities outdoors
A new study found solitary activities like fishing, hunting or exploring outside are key to building strong bonds between children and nature. (2020-08-05)

New study provides valuable historical dataset for Yellow River water management
Researchers led by Prof. LIU Yu from the Institute of Earth Environment of the Chinese Academy of Sciences and their collaborators reconstructed natural runoff history for the middle reach of the YR from 1492 to 2013 CE to assess the effects of human activities. (2020-07-27)

Some "inactive" drug ingredients may not be inert
The inactive ingredients that make up a major component of drug formulations may not be as inactive as previously thought, researchers report. (2020-07-23)

Early childhood education centers can boost parents' engagement at home
When early childhood education centers communicate well with parents, those parents are more likely to engage in educational activities with their children at home, a new University of Arizona study finds. (2020-07-07)

Comparing 13 different CRISPR-Cas9 DNA scissors
IBS scientists have achieved the most extensive high-throughput analysis of CRISPR-Cas9 activities. The team developed deep-learning-based computational models that predict the activities of SpCas9 variants for different DNA sequences. Published in Nature Biotechnology, this study represents a useful guide for selecting the most appropriate SpCas9 variant. (2020-06-25)

It's not about money -- why academic scientists engage in commercial activities
For scientists, engaging in commercial activities such as patenting and starting new ventures can be much more lucrative than relying on pure academic work. However, according to new research by ESMT Berlin, money is not the main reason why scientists choose to work on commercial activities. Motives such as social impact seem more important. (2020-06-18)

Domestic coastal and marine tourism could contribute to rebooting activity in the sect
NUI Galway's Socio-Economic Marine Research Unit (SEMRU) has released a report that presents estimates of the value of domestic coastal and marine tourism in the Republic of Ireland. (2020-05-21)

Scientists develop noninvasive ultrasound neuromodulation technique
Researchers from the Shenzhen Institutes of Advanced Technology (SIAT) of the Chinese Academy of Sciences developed a noninvasive ultrasound neuromodulation technique, which could potentially modulate neuronal excitability without any harm in the brain. (2020-05-14)

A review on phytochemistry, pharmacological action, ethanobotanical uses and nutritional potential
This comprehensive review presented by researchers from K.S. Rangasamy College of Arts and Science, Tiruchengode, Tamil-Nadu, India, gives readers a brief overview of phytoconstituents, nutritional values and medicinal properties of the plant. (2020-05-07)

Strenuous exercise safe for people at high risk of knee arthritis
People at high risk for knee osteoarthritis (OA) may be reluctant to participate in strenuous physical activities such as jogging, cycling, singles tennis and skiing. But a new study that followed high-risk individuals for 10 years showed vigorous exercise did not increase their risk of developing OA and may even protect them from it. (2020-05-04)

Conservation goals may be stymied by a lack of land for biodiversity offsetting
Developers may struggle to find enough land to offset the biodiversity impacts of future development, according to a University of Queensland study. UQ's Dr. Laura Sonter said the challenges were evident worldwide and could significantly limit the ability to achieve global conservation goals. (2020-04-29)

Natural mood regulation low or even absent in people with depression
Mood varies from hour-to-hour, day-to-day and healthy mood regulation involves choosing activities that help settle one's mood. However, in situations where personal choices of activities are constrained, such as during periods of social isolation and lockdown, this natural mood regulation is impaired which might result in depression. New research, published today in JAMA Psychiatry, from the Department of Psychiatry, University of Oxford suggests a new target for treating and reducing depression is supporting natural mood regulation. (2020-04-22)

Parents' physical activity helps kids with developmental disabilities improve motor skills
Kids with developmental disabilities face challenges in building motor skills, which makes them less able to participate in routine physical activity, which gives them less opportunity to practice those same motor skills. But parents can make a big difference by modeling and supporting physical activity in daily life, especially with younger children, a recent study from Oregon State University found. (2020-03-25)

Consumers value products more on sunny and snowy days but not when it rains
Weather is an ever-present force in consumers' daily lives, yet there is little marketing research on how it affects consumers and businesses. A new UBC Sauder School of Business study reveals that sunny and snowy conditions trigger consumers to mentally visualize using products associated with the respective weather, which leads to consumers placing a higher value on them. Researchers also found the link between weather and higher product valuation only works for products that are related to being outside. (2020-02-27)

Variety and consistency are essential to keep the mind healthy
The well-known adage 'use it or lose it' is just as important in your 30's as it is in older adults. But it's how you stay active that most impacts cognitive decline. (2020-02-18)

Status report: OSIRIS-REx completes closest flyover of sample site nightingale
OSIRIS-REx successfully executed a 0.4-mile (620-m) flyover of site Nightingale yesterday as part of the mission's Reconnaissance B phase activities. (2020-01-22)

Study: US presidents play surprising role in driving corporate social responsibility
A president's political party plays a big role in corporate social responsibility efforts, reveals new research from San Francisco State's Lam Family College of Business. (2020-01-03)

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