Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Science X Newsletter Wednesday, Jul 5

Dear Reader ,

Here is your customized Science X Newsletter for July 5, 2017:

Spotlight Stories Headlines

Your brain on mesh: Injectable flexible probe melds with neurons, causes little or no chronic immune response

Physicists provide support for retrocausal quantum theory, in which the future influences the past

Radio emission detected from a gamma-ray pulsar

Fastest stars in the Milky Way are 'runaways' from another galaxy

Three-dimensional chip combines computing and data storage

Neutrons detect elusive Higgs amplitude mode in quantum material

Global use of wastewater to irrigate agriculture at least 50 percent greater than thought

Self-driving cars may soon be able to make moral and ethical decisions as humans do

Herbicide boost for tadpoles: study

Researchers make significant progress in engineering digestive system tissues

Brain's immune cells may drive overeating and weight gain

Volvo goes electric, ditches cars powered solely by gas

Flowers' genome duplication contributes to their spectacular diversity

Teaching threatened species to be wary of predators

New species of yeast could help beer brewers reach new heights

Astronomy & Space news

Radio emission detected from a gamma-ray pulsar

(—A team of astronomers led by Yogesh Maan of the Netherlands Institute for Radio Astronomy (ASTRON) has discovered radio emission from the gamma-ray pulsar known as J1732−3131. The study, presented in a paper published June 26 on, provides more details about J1732−3131, which was originally detected as a radio-quiet pulsar.

Fastest stars in the Milky Way are 'runaways' from another galaxy

A group of astronomers have shown that the fastest-moving stars in our galaxy - which are travelling so fast that they can escape the Milky Way - are in fact runaways from a much smaller galaxy in orbit around our own.

Early moon model shows heavy metal atmosphere

(—A team of researchers working at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center has developed a model meant to show what the early moon may have looked like. As they note in their paper uploaded to the arXiv preprint server, study of rocks from the area between the near and far side of the moon could bolster their theory—and if it is found likely to be correct, it could impact theories regarding how the moon formed.

Dazzling spiral with an active heart

ESO's Very Large Telescope (VLT) has captured a magnificent face-on view of the barred spiral galaxy Messier 77. The image does justice to the galaxy's beauty, showcasing its glittering arms criss-crossed with dust lanes—but it fails to betray Messier 77's turbulent nature.

Calm lakes on Titan could mean smooth landing for future space probes

The lakes of liquid methane on Saturn's moon, Titan, are perfect for paddling but not for surfing. New research led by The University of Texas at Austin has found that most waves on Titan's lakes reach only about 1 centimeter high, a finding that indicates a serene environment that could be good news for future probes sent to the surface of that moon.

Cosmic farming

A third prototype of the AstroPlant citizen science initiative made its debut at the Border Sessions festival in the Netherlands last week. The desktop greenhouse allows people to help collect data on potential crops to grow in space.

Technology news

Volvo goes electric, ditches cars powered solely by gas

Volvo plans to build only electric and hybrid vehicles starting in 2019, making it the first major automaker to abandon cars and SUVs powered solely by the internal combustion engine.

'Smart' transformers could make reliable smart grid a reality

A new study using complex computational models finds that smart solid-state transformers (SSTs) could be used to make a stable, reliable "smart grid" - allowing the power distribution system to route renewable energy from homes and businesses into the power grid.

Researchers use Kinect to scan T. rex skull

Last year, a team of forensic dentists got authorization to perform a 3-D scan of the prized Tyrannosaurus rex skull at the Field Museum of Natural History in Chicago, in an effort to try to explain some strange holes in the jawbone.

Custom-made clothes for all within reach says top designer

Japanese designer Yuima Nakazato claimed Wednesday that he has cracked a digital technique which could revolutionise fashion with mass made-to-measure clothes.

Researchers explore how a desk surface can serve as a touchscreen

(Tech Xplore)—The digitally augmented desk is a focus area for Carnegie Mellon's Future Interfaces Group and they are on to something quite interesting.

First battery-free cellphone makes calls by harvesting ambient power

University of Washington researchers have invented a cellphone that requires no batteries—a major leap forward in moving beyond chargers, cords and dying phones. Instead, the phone harvests the few microwatts of power it requires from either ambient radio signals or light.

Troubled China tech giant LeEco confirms assets frozen

Assets linked to Chinese tech giant LeEco have been frozen in a dispute with a creditor, a unit of the troubled company has confirmed, highlighting its perilous financial state.

Concrete from wood

Houses can be made of wood, as they were in the past – or of concrete, as they are today. To build for tomorrow, the two building methods are being combined: These hybrid structures, which contain both wood and concrete elements, are becoming increasingly popular in contemporary architecture.

Are smart meters delivering on their promise?

Smart meters have two clear goals: to save energy and to shift consumer use of energy from on-peak to off-peak hours.

Baidu CEO's self-driving car stunt stumps police: media

Chinese internet giant Baidu's roll-out of a new self-driving car may have police trying to figure out who to ticket, local media reported Wednesday, after CEO Robin Li took one of the vehicles for a joy-ride on a Beijing highway.

China's WeChat fans can chat on the go in Europe

Chinese tourists can now use the popular WeChat messaging app while soaking up the sights in Europe this summer thanks to Dutch telecoms provider KPN.

Tracking humans in 3-D with off-the-shelf webcams

Many applications require that people and their movements are captured digitally in 3-D in real-time. Until now, this was possible only with expensive systems of several cameras, or by having people wear special suits. Computer scientists at the Max Planck Institute for Computer Science have developed a system that requires only a single video camera. It can even estimate the 3-D pose of a person acting in a pre-recorded video, for instance a YouTube video.

New Mexico firm uses motion of the ocean to bring fresh water to coastal communities

Hurricane Katrina whipped up huge, powerful waves that caused severe destruction in 2005 along the U.S. Gulf Coast. Their size and strength convinced Phil Kithil of Santa Fe, New Mexico, there had to be a way to harness that energy.

Dubai's Emirates says US has exempted it from laptop ban

Dubai-based Emirates airlines says the U.S. has exempted it from a ban on laptops in airplane cabins.

Image: Drone antenna test

This 6 m-wingspan unmanned aircraft is supported in mid-air within ESA's Hertz radio-frequency test chamber, as if suspended in flight, to check it can maintain contact with its controller through satellite links.

Team develops sprayable sensing network technology for structural health monitoring

The Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU) research team developed a novel breed of nanocomposites-inspired sensors which can be sprayed directly on flat or curved engineering structural surfaces, such as train tracks and aeroplane structures. The sprayed sensors can be networked, to render rich real-time information on the health status of the structure under monitoring. Due to its light weight and low fabrication cost, large quantities of sensors can be deployed in a sensor network for detecting hidden flaws of structures, paving the way for a new era of ultrasonics-based structural health monitoring.

Sixth MOX nuclear shipment leaves France for Japan

A cargo of reprocessed nuclear fuel containing highly radioactive plutonium left the French port of Cherbourg for Japan under heavy security on Wednesday as demonstrators protested against the transport.

Medicine & Health news

Self-driving cars may soon be able to make moral and ethical decisions as humans do

Can a self-driving vehicle be moral, act like humans do, or act like humans expect humans to? Contrary to previous thinking, a ground-breaking new study has found for the first time that human morality can be modelled meaning that machine based moral decisions are, in principle, possible.

Researchers make significant progress in engineering digestive system tissues

Researchers at Wake Forest Institute for Regenerative Medicine have reached important milestones in their quest to engineer replacement tissue in the lab to treat digestive system conditions - from infants born with too-short bowels to adults with inflammatory bowel disease, colon cancer, or fecal incontinence.

Brain's immune cells may drive overeating and weight gain

Immune cells in the brain trigger overeating and weight gain in response to diets rich in fat, according to a new study in mice led by researchers from UC San Francisco and the University of Washington Medical Center, and published online on July 5 in Cell Metabolism.

Repurposed asthma drug shows blood sugar improvement among some diabetics

After 12 weeks of taking an anti-asthma drug, a subset of patients with type 2 diabetes showed a clinically significant reduction in blood glucose during a randomized, double blind, placebo-controlled clinical trial, report University of California San Diego School of Medicine and University of Michigan researchers.

For mice, too much muscle glycogen impairs endurance exercise performance

In 2009, Usain Bolt set the world record in the 100-meter dash, thanks in large part to a carb called glycogen. This molecule is stored in skeletal muscle and later released to fuel short and intense bouts of physical activity. The basics of glycogen biology are thought to be well established, but a study in rodents published July 5th in the journal Cell Metabolism turns long-standing assumptions on their head. Surprisingly, the researchers found that glycogen synthesis does not require a protein called glycogenin, and that high glycogen levels actually impair endurance muscle performance in mice.

Smelling your food makes you fat

Our sense of smell is key to the enjoyment of food, so it may be no surprise that in experiments at the University of California, Berkeley, obese mice who lost their sense of smell also lost weight.

Neuroscientists call for more comprehensive view of how brain forms memories

Neuroscientists from the University of Chicago argue that research on how memories form in the brain should consider activity of groups of brain cells working together, not just the connections between them.

Watch cancer spread in a mouse

Researchers in Japan have developed a method to image cancer at the single-cell level by using chemical techniques to make whole mouse bodies and organs highly transparent. Combining their preparation with existing imaging technology, they were able view cancer cells multiplying within organs, including the lungs, intestines, and liver, and traveling through the body to and from new tumors in distant locales. The work appears July 5 in Cell Reports.

Study uses new technique to challenge brain development hypothesis

A new study involving The University of Queensland, which might be useful for biomedical research, re-writes parts of the rulebook on how mammalian brains - including our own - could have evolved.

Study shows psychopathic brains are wired in a way that can lead to dangerous and violent actions

Josh Buckholtz wants to change the way you think about psychopaths - and he's willing to go to prison to do it.

How a few drops of blood led to a breakthrough in immunology

Scientists from the Research Institute of the McGill University Health Centre (RI-MUHC) may have cracked the code to understanding the function of special cells called regulatory T Cells. Treg cells, as they are often known, control and regulate our immune system to prevent excessive reactions. The findings, published in Science Immunology, could have a major impact in our understanding and treatment of all autoimmune diseases and most chronic inflammatory diseases such as arthritis, Crohn's disease as well as broader conditions such as asthma, allergies and cancer.

Medical tourism in spotlight as experts call for tighter regulation

Countries should unite to tackle unscrupulous advertising of unproven therapies involving stem cells, experts say.

Study shows our faces reveal whether we're rich or poor

Put on a happy face, your success may depend on it, suggests a study by psychology researchers at the University of Toronto's Faculty of Arts and Science.

Brain changes accompany development of metamemory from childhood to adolescence

Being able to assess our own memories helps us to avoid errors and prompts us to collect more information to fill the gaps. Psychologists know that this ability is present in elementary school-age children. Now a new study shows how this "metamemory" improves from childhood through adolescence, with accompanying changes in brain structure. The work is published this week in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Personal neoantigen vaccine prompts strong anti-tumor response in patients, study shows

A personal cancer treatment vaccine that targets distinctive "neoantigens" on tumor cells has been shown to stimulate a potent, safe, and highly specific immune anti-tumor response in melanoma patients, report scientists from Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard.

New brain cancer drug targets revealed

Researchers from Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine and The Cleveland Clinic designed a way to screen brain tumor cells and identify potential drug targets missed by other methods. The team successfully used their technique to find a glioblastoma cancer gene that, when blocked, extends mouse survival rates.

Removal of invasive shrub could be an easy way to help reduce malaria transmission

Removing the flowers of an invasive shrub from mosquito-prone areas might be a simple way to help reduce malaria transmission, according to a new study published in the open access Malaria Journal. Removing the flowers from villages in Mali decreased the local mosquito vector population by nearly 60%.

People with Parkinson's should be monitored for melanoma, study finds

People with the movement disorder Parkinson's disease have a much higher risk of the skin cancer melanoma, and vice versa, a Mayo Clinic study finds. While further research is needed into the connection, physicians treating one disease should be vigilant for signs of the other and counsel those patients about risk, the authors say. The findings are published in Mayo Clinic Proceedings.

Meaningless accelerating scores yield better performance

Seemingly any behavior can be "gamified" and awarded digital points these days, from tracking the steps you've walked to the online purchases you've made and even the chores you've completed. Tracking behavior in this way helps to spur further action and new research shows that even meaningless scores can serve as effective motivators, as long as those scores are accelerating.

Malaysia hit by first rabies deaths in almost 20 years

Two Malaysian children have died after contracting rabies, the country's first such deaths in almost two decades, as authorities battle a rare outbreak of the disease, officials said Wednesday.

Tick towns: Researchers target neighborhoods in Lyme effort

Maybe it will take a village to fight Lyme disease. Or a bunch of them.

Endocrine disrupters: potentially harmful chemicals for human hormones

Potentially harmful chemicals which can interfere with the normal functioning of human hormones are known as endocrine disruptors (EDs).

Fertility treatment does not increase the risk of divorce

Despite repeated claims that the disappointments of infertility and stress of treatment can put intolerable strain on relationships, a large nationwide study involving more than 40,000 women has found that fertility treatment does not increase the risk of divorce.

Mothers with history of herpes can protect their offspring from neurological infection

Pregnant women with a previous history of herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1) infection maintain active antibodies against the virus, and researchers have found that this protection can pass to the nervous systems of their offspring.

Researchers use virtual reality to unpack causes of common diseases

Researchers from the University of Oxford are using a unique blend of virtual reality and innovative genetic techniques to understand the causes of diseases such as diabetes and anaemia.

How to keep your kids out of the ER this summer

(HealthDay)—Make sure safety is part of kids' summer fun.

Pot with patents could plant the seeds of future lawsuits

It's hard to make sense of cannabis regulation.

We're not ready for the 'silver tsunami' of older adults living with cancer

In the next few decades, the number of adults living with cancer is expected to triple in size.

Protein to control breast cancer progression identified

Switching off a protein produced in breast cancer cells can stop cancer progression, researchers from The University of Queensland have found.

Last call for parents who supply teens with booze

Parents supplying their teens with alcohol are not only fuelling underage drinking but are increasing the risk that their children and their children's friends will drink heavily.

End-of-life support is lacking for homeless people

A UCL-led study found that homeless people who are terminally ill are falling between cracks in services, and not able to access the same level of support as others.

Parents, supervisors and co-workers have greatest interpersonal influences in reducing young worker injuries

Parents, as your kids prepare for their summer jobs, have you talked to them about workplace safety? You really should.

Greater access to genetic testing needed for cancer diagnosis and treatment

Cancer patients should have routine access to genetic testing to improve diagnosis and treatment, according to England's chief medical officer.

Pain relievers without dangerous side effects

Scientists from Freie Universität Berlin and Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin at Campus Benjamin Franklin have developed a new class of pain medication. Using new chemical synthesis methods, the conventional pain medication morphine was coupled to carrier molecules, so-called nanocarriers. Their bond is only broken in the target tissue, in the case of injuries in the inflamed environment, so the morphine cannot cause side effects in healthy tissues such as the brain or the intestinal wall.

Marijuana and vulnerability to psychosis

Going from an occasional user of marijuana to a weekly or daily user increases an adolescent's risk of having recurrent psychotic-like experiences by 159 percent, according to a new Canadian study published today in the Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry. The study also reports effects of marijuana use on cognitive development and shows that the link between marijuana use and psychotic-like experiences is best explained by emerging symptoms of depression.

A new way to think about dementia and sex

Persons living with dementia don't have sex. Or they have weird sex. Or they have dangerous sex, in need of containment.

Doctors and nurses can't always tell if someone's drunk or on drugs, and misdiagnosis can be dangerous

Bob has arrived at the emergency department at 10am on a Tuesday after breaking several fingers slamming his hand in a car door. Bob is quite anxious; he speaks quickly and paces around. When asked to sit and explain what has happened, he provides an articulate account of events. A look at past medical records indicates Bob has recently been admitted to hospital for alcohol withdrawal. Bob's blood alcohol concentration is 0.35% (or 0.35 grams per decilitre). For the average person, this could be fatal. But Bob is sitting upright with little outward cues he has been drinking heavily.

Lutein may suppress inflammation

Lutein, a nutrient found in several highly coloured vegetables and fruits, can suppress inflammation, according to a new study by researchers at Linköping University, Sweden. The results, published in Atherosclerosis, suggest that lutein itself has anti-inflammatory effects in patients with coronary artery disease.

Children in single-mother-by-choice families do just as well as those in two-parent families

A study comparing the well-being of children growing up in single-mother-by-choice and heterosexual two-parent families has found no differences in terms of parent-child relationship or child development. However, the study did find that the single-mothers-by-choice did have a greater social support network.

Bandage alerts nursing staff if wound starts healing badly

A novel bandage alerts the nursing staff as soon as a wound starts healing badly. Sensors incorporated into the base material glow with a different intensity if the wound's pH level changes. This way even chronic wounds could be monitored at home.

People with tic disorders at increased suicide risk

People with Tourette's disorder or chronic tic disorder are over four times more likely to die by suicide than the general population, according to a new study in Biological Psychiatry. Dr. David Mataix-Cols of Karolinska Institute, Sweden, led the study of the largest group of patients with tic disorders in the world.

How much does dementia risk increase after traumatic brain injury?

Having a moderate or severe traumatic brain injury (TBI) in middle-age is associated with an increased risk for future dementia, according to a retrospective of study of more than 40,000 TBI patients published in PLOS Medicine by Rahul Raj of the University of Helsinki, Finland, and colleagues.

Two out of three US adults have not completed an advance directive

Advance directives are the primary tool for individuals to communicate their wishes if they become incapacitated and are unable to make their own health care decisions, particularly near the end of life. Despite this, 63 percent of American adults have not completed one, reports the most comprehensive study to date on the subject from researchers at the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania this week in the July issue of Health Affairs.

Sleep problems may be early sign of Alzheimer's

Poor sleep may be a sign that people who are otherwise healthy may be more at risk of developing Alzheimer's disease later in life than people who do not have sleep problems, according to a study published in the July 5, 2017, online issue of Neurology, the medical journal of the American Academy of Neurology. Researchers have found a link between sleep disturbances and biological markers for Alzheimer's disease found in the spinal fluid.

Bringing precision to Medicare cancer care

Medicare policies governing cancer patients' end-of-life care are based on generalized statistics—such as average survival time and treatment costs—that often fail to reflect the variety of experiences across patient subpopulations, as well as among individual patients, according to a new study led by Harvard Medical School researchers, published in the July issue of the journal Health Affairs.

V.A. campaign to increase hospice care showing results

A new study in the July issue of Health Affairs finds that a U.S Department of Veterans Affairs (V.A.) initiative to improve care at the end of life led to a substantial increase in the use of hospice among U.S. veterans.

Black and Hispanic patients more likely to use lower-quality hospices

Black and Hispanic patients are more likely to receive care from poorer quality hospices, and their family caregivers are less likely to receive the right amount of emotional and religious support in hospice care, according to a new RAND Corporation study.

Do blind people express their emotions in the same way as people who can see?

Facial expressions play a powerful role in social interactions from birth to adulthood. Fear, joy, anger—all our emotions are articulated and understood thanks to universal codes. Common sense sees this enterprise as an act of imitation: children imitate their parents by reproducing the facial expression linked to each emotion. But if this is the case, does the same hold true for people who were born blind? Do they show their emotions in the same way? The UNIGE researchers analyzed 21 scientific studies conducted between 1932 and 2015 to find the answer, and you can read a summary of their results in the journal Psychonomic Bulletin & Review.

Small-molecule therapeutic boosts spatial memory and motor function in Rett syndrome mice

New research into Rett syndrome therapeutics suggests that a small molecule already reported to improve respiratory problems associated with the disease may also improve spatial memory and motor skill defects.

Colored glasses may provide light sensitivity relief post-concussion

Following a concussion or mild traumatic brain injury (TBI), patients may suffer from light sensitivity or photophobia, making it challenging to return to normal activities. The sensitivity may also trigger or exacerbate headaches.

Scientists discover an essential mechanism in the immune response

Scientists at the Centro Nacional de Investigaciones Cardiovasculares Carlos III (CNIC) have discovered that the transcriptional regulator CTCF plays an essential role in antibody production. The study, led by Dr. Almudena Ramiro and published in Nature Communications, demonstrates that CTCF is essential for the ability of B lymphocytes to correctly protect the body against infection by pathogens. The research team shows that in the absence of CTCF, the immune system does not function correctly, a finding with implications for vaccine research.

Gaze direction affects sensitivity to sounds

Listening to something while looking in a different direction can slow down reaction times while the brain works harder to suppress distractions, finds a new UCL study.

Sleep scientists' latest book debunks 40 myths on getting a good night's sleep

A new book by leading sleep scientists debunks 40 popular and persistent myths on how to get a good night's sleep - from the efficacy of bed socks to the potentially negative consequences of sticking to 'the eight hour rule'.

Study sheds light on new Lyme disease-causing bacteria

A new species of bacteria that causes Lyme disease needs the same amount of time for transmission after a tick bite compared to previously implicated bacteria, according to new research by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Existing guidelines for frequent tick checks and prompt removal of attached ticks remain the same.

Research could give insight into genetic basis of of the human muscle disease, myopathy

Pioneering research using the tropical zebrafish could provide new insights into the genetic basis of myopathy, a type of human muscle disease.

Training can improve athletes' stereo vision

Stereo vision allows individuals to perceive depth differences in their surroundings. Important to pedestrians and drivers, for example, depth perception plays a key role in many sporting activities. If the ability to accurately determine the distance and speed of a fast-moving object can be improved, athletes have the potential to improve their performance. In a new study published in Restorative Neurology and Neuroscience, researchers found that by training athletes using repetitive stereoscopic stimuli, their reaction speed to those stimuli could be significantly improved.

Bowel cancer diagnosis delayed by other illness

The researchers from the University of Exeter analysed clinical data from over 4,500 patients across the UK who were later diagnosed with bowel cancer. In a study published in the British Journal of Cancer, they looked at whether pre-existing illness affected the time it took them to get a cancer diagnosis, making it one of the first studies to investigate this.

Gut bacteria can help to predict how the body will respond to fatty foods

Chemical signatures from gut bacteria which show up in urine can be used to predict how the body will respond to a 'junk' diet.

Worldwide health authorities urged to rethink vitamin D guidelines

Worldwide health authorities are being urged to rethink official guidance around vitamin D following the publication of a ground breaking study from the University of Surrey, which dispels the myth that vitamin D2 and D3 have the same nutritional value.

Team finds provider consolidation can lead to higher physician prices

The Medica Research Institute has published work in the journal Health Economics that analyzes the impact of physician prices as a result of provider consolidation or integration.

Study: No link seen between traumatic brain injury and cognitive decline

Although much research has examined traumatic brain injury (TBI) as a possible risk factor for later life dementia from neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer's disease (AD), little is known regarding how TBI influences the rate of age-related cognitive change. A new study now shows that history of TBI (with loss of consciousness) does not appear to affect the rate of cognitive change over time for participants with normal cognition or even those with AD dementia.

Hospital, office physicians have differing laments about electronic records

A new study reports widespread agreement among physicians that maintaining electronic health records (EHRs) undermines their connection with patients. The analysis found, however, that hospital-based physicians most often decried how EHRs take time away from patient contact, while office-based physicians most often lamented that EHRs detract from the quality of their patient interactions.

Higher BMI linked with increased risk of high blood pressure, heart disease, type 2 diabetes

Results of a new study add to the evidence of an association between higher body mass index (BMI) and increased risk of cardiometabolic diseases such as hypertension, coronary heart disease, type 2 diabetes, according to a study published by JAMA Cardiology.

Skin plays significant role in spread of leishmaniasis

Scientists at the University of York have discovered that parasites responsible for leishmaniasis - a globally occurring neglected tropical disease spread by sand flies - are mainly acquired from the skin rather than a person's blood.

Intervention for caregivers of dementia patients can lead to substantial Medicaid savings

A new study published in The Gerontologist finds that states could save tens of millions of dollars—and help more Americans with dementia remain in their communities—if their caregivers took part in a program designed to improve their emotional and physical well-being so that they were able care for their spouses or partners effectively at home.

Soft contact lenses safe for kids and teens, review finds

(HealthDay)—Soft contact lenses are as safe for children and teens as they are for adults, a new review finds.

Take a new view of yoga

(HealthDay)—Want to add strength training, flexibility, and even stress reduction to your fitness plan?

Moms, kids and TV: A complicated relationship that's not all bad

Watching television sometimes gets a bad rap—especially where children and screen time are concerned—but not all of it's deserved.

Make up after the break up: Men choose sex, women tears and quality time

If a man wants to make amends with his girlfriend after an argument, he should dedicate quality time and shed a few tears while asking for forgiveness. However, these are not the best ways for a woman to make up with her boyfriend; men consider a kind gesture or receiving sexual favors as the best form of apology. This was revealed in a study led by T. Joel Wade of Bucknell University in the US. Overall, it was found that showing emotional commitment is the best way of reconciling a conflict between romantic partners, but that there are systematic differences in how men and women prefer this to be put into practice. The findings were published in Springer's journal Evolutionary Psychological Science.

Science Says: Too early for forecast on Lyme disease ticks

Tick populations are exploding? Tick-borne diseases are on the rise?

Improved risk recognition expected to enhance fertility preservation for cancer patients

About 11 percent of females who survive childhood cancer have an ovarian condition that leaves them at risk for infertility, weaker bones and frail health as young adults, according to research from St. Jude Children's Research Hospital. The findings appear today in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism.

Researchers' neural network model can predict melanoma from images with a high degree of accuracy

It's a mark on your skin you've never noticed before. It's a spot with irregular borders, or a mole that seems to be changing. Maybe it's a wound that does not heal.

'Substance P' in tears—a noninvasive test for diabetes-related nerve damage?

Levels of a nerve cell signaling molecule called substance P—measured in tear samples—might be a useful marker of diabetes-related nerve damage (neuropathy), suggests a study in the July issue of Optometry and Vision Science, the official journal of the American Academy of Optometry.

Over 1.2 million people in England and Wales will be living with dementia by 2040

By 2040, there will be over 1.2 million people living with dementia in England and Wales (an increase of 57% from 2016), largely due to increased life expectancy, say researchers in The BMJ today.

Combo immunotherapy may herald new standard of care for kidney cancer

Combination therapy with two immunotherapy drugs produces an unprecedented doubling of response rates from 20 percent to 40 percent, a new study shows.

New paradigm launched for antibiotic discovery and production

Scientists from the National Physical Laboratory (NPL), biotechnology company Ingenza and Plymouth University have joined efforts to develop a discovery and production platform for a new family of antibiotics.

Multichannel EEG recordings enable precise brain wave measurement of fish

A research team led by Professor Sohee Kim at the Robotics Engineering department succeeded in measuring zebrafish's multi-channel electroencephalogram (EEG) on June 12 for the first time in the world.

Tenofovir alafenamide in chronic hepatitis B: Added benefit not proven, data incomplete

The antiviral drug tenofovir alafenamide (TAF) has been used since 2015 in different combinations for the treatment of HIV and has already been subject to 3 early benefit assessments for this therapeutic indication. It has now also been approved for the treatment of adults and adolescents with chronic hepatitis B. The German Institute for Quality and Efficiency in Health Care (IQWiG) now examined in a further early benefit assessment whether the drug offers an added benefit for these patients.

Sex now needs to be included as a biological variable in NIH-funded research, but how?

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) instituted a policy that now expects sex to be considered as a variable, much like a subject's age or weight, in the biomedical research it funds, but researchers appear unclear what this should entail. How to take into consideration the potential influence of sex and how to ensure that it is a critical element of study design and results interpretation are the focus of an article published in Gender and the Genome.

Recognition and mechanisms of chemical and environmental sensitivities in ecopsychology

A comprehensive look at the under-recognized problem of environmental sensitivity and related disorders that develop as a result of exposure to chemicals and other toxic factors is published in a special issue of Ecopsychology entitled "Ecopsychology and Environmental Sensitivities: Chemical, Electrical, and Beyond,".

CHLA conducts satisfaction survey in the pediatric emergency department

Physician researchers at Children's Hospital Los Angeles (CHLA) surveyed caregivers to understand their expectations and satisfaction of urgent care in a pediatric emergency department (ED). They found that expectations about care delivered in the ED are directly related to satisfaction of care at the end of the visit. In an emergency department that sees more than 82,000 patients per year, the study authors were pleasantly surprised to discover that caregivers were generally more satisfied with the actual care than the urgent care physicians expected.

UN: Cholera outbreak in Yemen has spread and over 1,600 dead

The United Nations says the cholera outbreak in war-torn Yemen has now spread to all 21 governorates and there have been 270,000 suspected cases and over 1,600 deaths from the disease since late April.

New guideline on pelvic girdle pain during pregnancy

Pelvic girdle pain (PGP) is a common condition that causes pain and physical impairment, most frequently during the antepartum (before delivery) period. A new guideline for evidence-based physical therapy practice for PGP during pregnancy appears in the Journal of Women's Health Physical Therapy, official journal of the Section on Women's Health (SOWH) of the American Physical Therapy Association.

Biology news

Herbicide boost for tadpoles: study

Maligned as a bee-killer and possibly cancer-causing, a common herbicide has turned out to be a boon for tadpoles making them more toxic to predators, researchers said Wednesday.

Flowers' genome duplication contributes to their spectacular diversity

Scientists at the University of Bristol have shed new light on the evolution of flowers in research published today in the Royal Society journal Proceedings of the Royal Society B.

Teaching threatened species to be wary of predators

A study of burrowing bettongs in the Australian desert has shown for the first time that exposing threatened native animals to small numbers of predators in the wild teaches them how to avoid their enemies.

New species of yeast could help beer brewers reach new heights

Researchers at the University of Manchester have discovered a new species of yeast that could help brewers create better lager.

Powerful new technique can clone thousands of genes at once

Scientists at Johns Hopkins, Rutgers, the University of Trento in Italy, and Harvard Medical School report they have developed a new molecular technique called LASSO cloning, which can be used to isolate thousands of long DNA sequences at the same time, more than ever before possible. The new technology, they say, speeds up the creation of proteins, the final products of genes, and is likely to lead to far more rapid discovery of new medicines and biomarkers for scores of diseases.

Muscles can 'ask' for the energy they need

Muscles require energy to perform all of the movements that we do in a day, and now, for the first time, researchers at the Texas A&M College of Medicine have shown how muscles "request" more energy from fat storage tissues in fruit fly models. They also discovered that this circuit is dependent on circadian rhythms, which could have implications for obesity in humans. Their findings published today in the journal Current Biology.

A whole-genome sequenced rice mutant resource for the study of biofuel feedstocks

Rice is a staple food for over half of the world's population and a model for studies of candidate bioenergy grasses such as sorghum, switchgrass, and Miscanthus. To optimize crops for biofuel production, scientists are seeking to identify genes that control key traits such as yield, resistance to disease, and water use efficiency.

Detailed study reveals genes are constantly rearranged by cells

Moving genes about could help cells to respond to change according to scientists at the Babraham Institute in Cambridge, UK and the Weizmann Institute, Israel. Changing the location of a gene within a cell alters its activity. Like mixing music, different locations can make a gene 'louder' or 'quieter', with louder genes contributing more actively to the life of a cell.

Malaria parasites able to sense their hosts calorie intake

Even though malaria still kills one child every minute, the vast majority of those infected still survive, with roughly 200 million new infections every year. A new study has shown that the infectious agent responsible for malaria, the Plasmodium parasite, is able to to sense and actively adapt to the host's nutritional status. Using mouse models of malaria infection, scientists led by Maria M. Mota from Instituto de Medicina Molecular in Lisbon (iMM Lisboa), found that mice who ate 30% fewer calories had a significantly lower parasite load.

Researchers provide new insights on the connection between autophagy and lifespan

Researchers at Sanford Burnham Prebys Medical Discovery Institute (SBP) have undertaken the first ever comprehensive analysis of autophagy in a living animal during aging. "Autophagy," which means "self-eating" based on its Greek roots, is the normal physiological process the body's cells use to remove viruses, bacteria, and damaged material from the cell. Autophagy also helps cells "clean house" by recycling building blocks—similar to the way we recycle glass, plastic and metal. In recent years, defective autophagy has been linked to age-related diseases such as cancer, neurodegeneration and heart disease.

In the egg, American bullfrogs learn how to avoid becoming lunch

When exposed to potential predators as an embryo, the invasive American bullfrog becomes harder to kill when it becomes a tadpole, according to a new study by Oregon State University researchers.

Winging it: How do bats out-maneuver their prey?

Bats catch food 'on the wing' without touching the ground, but how do they do it? A new study by Per Henningsson at Lund University, Sweden is the first of its kind to analyse the aerodynamics of bats performing manoeuvers during flight.

A twist in the tail: Flying fish give clues to 'tandem wing' airplane design

Ribbon halfbeak are a species of fish with the ability to fly above the sea surface - but unlike true 'flying fish', they lack the necessary hind wing fins. So how do they fly? Dr Yoshinobu Inada from Tokai University, Japan says, "Investigating the design of ribbon halfbeak could provide useful information for the optimal design of tandem wing airplanes."

Whale attack simulations reveal prey escape strategies

Humpback whales feed from a range of species that have adapted to escape their fate in a variety of ways. As much as humans track their prey according to the species they are stalking, so whales lunge open-mouthed in different ways depending on the target they are hunting.

Genetics may lie at the heart of crop yield limitation

You might think that plants grow according to how much nutrition, water and sunlight they are exposed to, but new research by Dr Nick Pullen and a team from the John Innes Centre, UK shows that the plant's own genetics may be the real limiting factor.

Sea shells for sale: A new source of sustainable biomaterials

Over 7 million tonnes of mollusc shells are discarded by the seafood industry each year as unwanted waste - and the vast majority of these shells are either thrown in landfills or dumped at sea. Dr James Morris and a team of CACHE researchers from the Royal Belgian Institute of Natural Sciences are looking at environmentally and economically sustainable options for these biomaterials.

Naturalness as a success factor

"Naturalness" is a construct – but according to a new study from the ETH Consumer Behavior group, a product's success on the food market is primarily defined by whether or not consumers perceive it as natural.

Drosophilia brings to light the role of morphogens in limb growth

Researchers working in the Development and Growth Control Lab at IRB Barcelona reveal that the Dpp gene (BMP in humans) plays a double role in the structural organisation and growth of the wings of the fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster. This study, which has been published in the journal eLife, demonstrates that Dpp is necessary for tissue growth but that "its gradient does not direct wing growth," explains Marco Milán, ICREA research professor and head of the study. This and two other studies published simultaneously in the journal eLife settle the intense scientific debate regarding the function of Dpp and other morphogens involved in development.

Fresh look at desalination plants uncovers bacterial blocks

A new study by a Murdoch researcher may help keep desalination plants flowing.

Sulfide-producing bacteria dominate hydraulically fractured oil and gas wells

Researchers have found that the microbes inhabiting a hydraulically fractured shale formation produce toxic, corrosive sulfide through a poorly understood pathway. The team's findings, published this week in mSphere, an open-access journal of the American Society for Microbiology, reveal that the oil and gas industry may need new ways to monitor and mitigate sulfide-producing bacteria in fractured shales.

Skin microbe diversity can vary with forest type and habitat in Brazilian frogs

The diversity of microbes on the skin of frog species in Brazil's Atlantic Forest can vary with habitat, according to a study published July 5, 2017 in the open-access journal PLOS ONE by Ananda Brito de Assis from University of São Paulo, Brazil, and colleagues.

Global ocean health relatively stable over past five years

While global ocean health has remained relatively stable over the past five years, individual countries have seen changes, according to a study published July 5, 2017 in the open-access journal PLOS ONE by Benjamin Halpern from University of California Santa Barbara, USA and colleagues.

Who'll win at Wimbledon? Just listen to the pitch of the grunts

Never mind counting aces and killer shots. If you want to predict the outcome of a tennis match, pay attention to the players' grunts.

Local views key to unlocking ways to fairer and more successful nature conservation

New research led by the University of East Anglia (UEA) shows how a policy aimed at ensuring the world's protected areas are "equitably managed" has potential to improve nature conservation and outcomes for local people, although current practices that treat it as a 'check box' exercise put the global goal at risk.

Ancient fungi could help Canada's future northern forests

As Canada's vast boreal and tundra ecosystems experience dramatic warming due to climate change, trees are rapidly spreading north. New research from UBC's Okanagan Campus suggests some of these trees could be getting help from a surprising source: fungi that have lain dormant underground for thousands of years.

Fish prefer to swim with sporty shoalmates

Just like humans, many fish like to surround themselves with active companions - but frisky friends also make for fierce competition. New research from PhD student, Ms Anna Persson, and a team of researchers from the University of Glasgow, UK reveals that minnows would rather swim with their most active friends, even if they pose more of a threat.

Saving the paintbrush lily from extinction

A major effort is underway to conserve the last remaining 60 individual paintbrush lilies (Haemanthus pumilio) in the Duthie Nature Reserve in Stellenbosch, South Africa, as well as increase the population through micropropagation.

Marine parasites: Different strokes for different folks

The bigger the host, the better for its guests. That certainly holds for parasitic barnacles. A new study confirms the link and reveals the strategy adopted by these unusual crustaceans in the early phases of the evolution of their lifestyle.

Synthetic horns may save rhinos if they are not like the real thing

Every eight hours, a rhinoceros is slaughtered in South Africa. Rhino poaching in South Africa surged from 83 in 2008 to a record 1,215 in 2014 to meet demands by newly-affluent Asian countries, where the horn is a key ingredient in traditional medicines.

When temps rise, Japanese quail require a breeze

Tiny Japanese quail eggs are a small niche market in the United States, but they're a big business in Brazil where they are sold fresh in grocery stores in egg cartons that hold 30 of the small, speckled delicacies, and are a hard-boiled staple on restaurant salad bars. Recent research from the University of Illinois helps Brazilian producers understand the birds' behavior under wind and temperature variables and suggests environmental changes to boost their egg-laying productivity.

The big ecological roles of small natural features

Ecologists and conservationists have long recognized that keystone species have major ecological importance disproportionate to their abundance or size. Think beavers, sea stars and prairie dogs—species that keep a ecosystem balanced.

Krill hotspot fuels incredible biodiversity in Antarctic region

There are so many Antarctic krill in the Southern Ocean that the combined mass of these tiny aquatic organisms is more than that of the world's 7.5 billion human inhabitants.

Even light oiling is like flying with a ball and chain for birds

It's a depressingly familiar sight when an oil well blows or a tanker runs aground: thousands of stranded, helpless animals wallowing in cloying crude oil. 'Birds are often used as the poster children for the deadly effects of oil', says Ivan Maggini from Western University, Canada, recalling the shocking images of struggling animals that accompanied the catastrophic Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico in 2010. 'However, the effects of oiling go far beyond the unfortunate individuals that become heavily oiled', says Maggini, highlighting the risks of hypothermia and toxin ingestion for lightly oiled birds when they preen. Western University physiological ecologist Chris Guglielmo has been assessing the toxicity of crude oil since 2011. However, no previous study had looked at the effect of oiling on flight, so Maggini, Guglielmo and Karen Dean wondered how even a small amount of contamination might affect the flight of migratory birds that cover great distances. They publish their discovery that light oiling can dramatically increase the flight costs of migrating birds in Journal of Experimental Biology.

Liberia takes a major step forward in protecting its elephants

Fantastic news for Liberian forest elephants as the President gives her formal signature for the immediate implementation of a National Elephant Action Plan.

Jailbird: Swiss collector sentenced for filching feathers

A Swiss hawk enthusiast was on Wednesday sentenced to three years behind bars for stealing more than 10,000 bird feathers worth an estimated $6 million from European museums.

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