Tuesday, August 21, 2018

Science X Newsletter Tuesday, Aug 21

Dear Reader ,

Here is your customized Science X Newsletter for August 21, 2018:

Spotlight Stories Headlines

A new map management process for visual localization in outdoor environments

Bioprinting bone substitute materials with cell-laden bioinks

Researchers develop sub-7-nm memory device without nanofabrication

Ice confirmed at the Moon's poles

Understanding of light momentum: Researchers shine a light on 150-year old mystery

Researchers investigate a peculiar star-forming dwarf galaxy candidate

Infant exoplanet weighed by Hipparcos and Gaia

Fake news detector algorithm works better than a human

Quantum simulation reveals mobility edge in a low-dimensional disordered landscape

Must do better: Japan eyes AI robots in class to boost English

Engineers develop computerized camera without optics that instead uses an ordinary window as the lens

Simple leg exercises could reduce impact of sedentary lifestyle on heart and blood vessels

Water bottles, other recycled 3-D printing materials could avoid military supply snags

Gut bacteria provide key to making universal blood

Portable freshwater harvester could draw up to 10 gallons per hour from the air

Astronomy & Space news

Ice confirmed at the Moon's poles

In the darkest and coldest parts of its polar regions, a team of scientists has directly observed definitive evidence of water ice on the Moon's surface. These ice deposits are patchily distributed and could possibly be ancient. At the southern pole, most of the ice is concentrated at lunar craters, while the northern pole's ice is more widely, but sparsely spread.

Researchers investigate a peculiar star-forming dwarf galaxy candidate

European astronomers have recently conducted a study of a star-forming dwarf galaxy candidate located in the halo of the galaxy NGC 4634. The new research, presented in a paper published August 8 on the arXiv pre-print server, provides insights into the nature and origin of this peculiar object.

Infant exoplanet weighed by Hipparcos and Gaia

The mass of a very young exoplanet has been revealed for the first time using data from ESA's star mapping spacecraft Gaia and its predecessor, the quarter-century retired Hipparcos satellite.

Image: Hubble's treasure chest of galaxies

Galaxies abound in this spectacular Hubble image; spiral arms swirl in all colors and orientations, and fuzzy ellipticals can be seen speckled across the frame as softly glowing smudges on the sky. Each visible speck of a galaxy is home to countless stars. A few stars closer to home shine brightly in the foreground, while a massive galaxy cluster nestles at the very center of the image—an immense collection of maybe thousands of galaxies, all held together by the relentless force of gravity.

Swift's telescope reveals births, deaths and collisions of stars through through 1 million snapshots in UV

Imagine if the color camera had never been invented and all our images were in black and white. The world would still look beautiful, but incomplete. For thousands of years, that was how humans saw the universe. On Earth, we can only see part of the light that stars emit.

In search of the best telescope location, astronomer heads to high places

It is a tale of North and South with an astronomical twist, with a UNSW astronomer and a UNSW PhD alumnus heading from Antarctica to the Tibetan Plateau to help find the best site for a new, 12-metre optical telescope.

Image: Planet of clouds

From the vantage point of space, astronaut Alexander Gerst of the European Space Agency reminds us of the the beauty and wonder of our planet.

Technology news

A new map management process for visual localization in outdoor environments

Researchers at ETH Zürich's Autonomous Systems Lab have recently developed a map management process for visual localization systems, specifically designed for operations in outdoor environments involving several vehicles. Their study, presented at this year's Intelligent Vehicles Symposium (IV) and available on arXiv, addresses the key challenge of incorporating large amounts of visual localization data into a lifelong visual map, in order to consistently provide effective localization under all appearance conditions.

Fake news detector algorithm works better than a human

An algorithm-based system that identifies telltale linguistic cues in fake news stories could provide news aggregator and social media sites like Google News with a new weapon in the fight against misinformation.

Must do better: Japan eyes AI robots in class to boost English

English-speaking AI robots will be helping out in some 500 Japanese classrooms from next year as the country seeks to improve its English skills among both children and teachers.

Engineers develop computerized camera without optics that instead uses an ordinary window as the lens

In the future, your car windshield could become a giant camera sensing objects on the road. Or each window in a home could be turned into a security camera.

Optogenetics – controlling neurons with light – may lead to cures for PTSD, Alzheimer's

Through the emerging field of optogenetics, a technology that allows genetically modified neurons in living tissue to be precisely controlled by means of light, scientists are attempting to gain a better understanding of how the brain works in hopes of discovering cures for debilitating neural disorders such as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and Alzheimer's disease.

Wireless communication breaks through water-air barrier

MIT researchers have taken a step toward solving a longstanding challenge with wireless communication: direct data transmission between underwater and airborne devices.

States aim to stop internet release of 3D-printed gun plans

A federal judge in Seattle is scheduled to hear arguments Tuesday on whether to block a settlement the U.S. State Department reached with a company that would allow it to post blueprints for printing 3D weapons on the internet.

Google sued for unwanted tracking of phone locations

A lawsuit filed in federal court here accuses Google of invading people's privacy by tracking the whereabouts of smartphones users despite "location history" settings being turned off.

Researchers are developing fast-charging solid-state batteries

Solid-state batteries contain no liquid parts that could leak or catch fire. For this reason, they do not require cooling, and are considered to be much safer, more reliable, and longer lasting than traditional lithium-ion batteries. Juelich scientists have now introduced a new concept that allows currents up to 10 times greater during charging and discharging than previously described in the literature.

Metamolds—molding a mold

The method of fabricating objects via silicone molding has a long tradition. Until now, however, creating molds for casting complex objects required a lot of experience and involved manual work, which made the process expensive and slow. Researchers from the Istituto di Scienza e Tecnologie dell'Informazione (ISTI-CNR) and the Institute of Science and Technology Austria (IST Austria) have now developed a tool that not only automatically finds the best way of designing the molds, but also delivers templates for so-called "metamolds": Rigid, 3-D-printed molds used to fabricate the optimized silicone molds. Their method, which can lower the cost of this fabricating technique, is presented at this year's SIGGRAPH conference.

Ban 'killer robots' to protect fundamental moral and legal principles

When drafting a treaty on the laws of war at the end of the 19th century, diplomats could not foresee the future of weapons development. But they did adopt a legal and moral standard for judging new technology not covered by existing treaty language.

Fly high and far with Asia's first fully solar-powered quadcopter drone

A team from the National University of Singapore (NUS) Faculty of Engineering has developed Asia's first fully solar-powered quadcopter drone. The aircraft has flown above 10 metres in test flights and achieved controllable flight without the use of batteries.

Alexa and Google Home are no threat to regional accents – here's why

"Hey, Google. Can you understand my accent?"

First large-scale market analysis of underground cybercrime economy

Cybercrime is easier to carry out as more and more online criminal services (commodities) become available. Delft University of Technology (TU Delft) researcher Rolf van Wegberg investigated the extent and growth of this specific online underground economy.

Workplace software startup Slack valued at $7.1 bn in new funding

Slack, the workplace collaboration software startup that aims to fuel a move away from email, said Tuesday it raised $427 million to give it a valuation of some $7.1 billion.

Facebook, NYU team up to make MRI scans faster through AI

Facebook is working with the NYU School of Medicine to shorten the length of time patients must spend in MRI scanners.

Reminder: Your smartphone is likely tracking your location

A new lawsuit accusing Google of tracking people's locations against their will has served as a reminder that every movement of most smartphone users is being recorded, often without their knowledge.

Facebook flags users who try to 'game' fact-checking effort

Facebook acknowledged Tuesday it has developed tools to identify users "indiscriminately" flagging fake news as it refines its effort to combat misinformation.

NIST details steps to keep buildings functioning after natural hazards

After an earthquake, hurricane, tornado or other natural hazard, it's considered a win if no one gets hurt and buildings stay standing. But an even bigger victory is possible: keeping those structures operational. This outcome could become more likely with improved standards and codes for the construction of residential and commercial buildings, according to a new report recently delivered to the U.S. Congress by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST).

Microsoft uncovers more Russian hacking ahead of midterms

Microsoft has uncovered new Russian hacking efforts targeting U.S. political groups ahead of the midterm elections.

India calls for WhatApp reforms after lynchings

India on Tuesday called on WhatsApp to clamp down on fake news spread on the messaging app that has been blamed for lynchings across the vast South Asian country.

New device increases the efficiency and reduces the cost of telecommunication satellites

Researchers at Valencia's Polytechnic University (UPV), working for the Telecommunications and Multimedia Applications Institute (iTEAM), have developed a new device that increases the efficiency of satellites while reducing their cost. It is a prototype of a radiant cell that incorporates the four traditional beams from satellites with multibeam technology. These signals are currently emitted by four antennas, each with their own reflective systems; the device designed by the iTEAM groups them together in a single piece of equipment.

Air Canada, partners buy Aeroplan loyalty program

Air Canada led a consortium of banks in buying back Canada's leading loyalty program Aeroplan, and said Tuesday it plans to roll it into its own points card.

Medicine & Health news

Bioprinting bone substitute materials with cell-laden bioinks

Bone tissue engineering (BTE) is a developing field in materials science and bioengineering, in which researchers aim to engineer an ideal, bioinspired material to promote assisted bone repair. Since experimental strategies are yet to translate from the laboratory bench to clinical practice in orthopedics, the research field combines cutting-edge technologies for exciting new approaches in bone substitute materials development. The interplay of cells, proteins, biological components and biomaterials during biofabrication in the lab can assist the manufacture of biological building blocks at the industrial scale for applications in regenerative medicine.

Simple leg exercises could reduce impact of sedentary lifestyle on heart and blood vessels

A sedentary lifestyle can cause an impairment of the transport of blood around the body, which increases the risk of disease in the heart and blood vessels. New research published in Experimental Physiology suggests that performing simple leg exercises whilst lying down might help to prevent these problems.

Two consumer baby monitors show worrisome results in measuring vital signs

Researchers who tested two commercially available baby monitors are raising serious concerns about the accuracy of these products, which are marketed to parents, but are not regulated by the U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA).

'It's all in the eyes': The role of the amygdala in the experience and perception of fear

Researchers have long believed that the amygdala, an almond-shaped structure in the brain, is central to the experience and perception of fear. Studies initiated in the 1990s of a patient with a rare condition affecting the amygdala initially seemed to support this conclusion. However, as Lisa Feldman Barrett, Ph.D., of the Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) Department of Psychiatry writes in a new paper, the role of the amygdala has turned out to be more complex than originally thought. Barrett, a research scientist at the Athinoula A. Martinos Center for Biomedical Imaging at MGH and a University Distinguished Professor of Psychology at Northeastern University, was invited to write the paper for the 40th anniversary issue of the journal Trends in Neurosciences.

First in-depth profile of CAR T-cell signals suggests how to improve immunotherapy

CAR T-cell therapy, which reprograms immune cells to fight cancer, has shown great promise in people with some blood cancers who have not responded to other treatments. But until now, the underlying biological pathways enabling anti-cancer responses have not been thoroughly examined.

Sequencing genomes of Nigerian women could help prevent many lethal breast cancers

For the first time, DNA contributed by Sub-Saharan African women has been thoroughly evaluated with innovative genomics technology in an effort to understand the genetic bases for breast cancer in African populations.

Researchers discover novel subtype of multiple sclerosis

Cleveland Clinic researchers have discovered a new subtype of multiple sclerosis (MS), providing a better understanding of the individualized nature of the disease.

High-speed atomic force microscopy reveals clock protein interactions

For the first time, researchers have seen how proteins involved in the daily biological clock interact with each other, helping them to further understand a process tied to numerous metabolic and eating disorders, problems with shift work, jet lag and mental health issues.

Policing protein restrains genes to enable healthy development

Melbourne scientists have shown for the first time how a protein called SMCHD1 helps to police healthy development in the body.

How do muscles know what time it is?

How do muscle cells prepare for the particular metabolic challenges of the day? Scientists at Helmholtz Zentrum München and Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München (LMU), members of the German Center for Diabetes Research (DZD), have investigated this question and published their results in PLOS Biology. The study has uncovered a metabolic network which is, contrary to expectations, not controlled by the brain but rather by the 'circadian clock' of muscle cells.

Powerful molecules provide new findings about Huntington's disease

Researchers at Lund University in Sweden have discovered a direct link between the protein aggregation in nerve cells that is typical for neurodegenerative diseases, and the regulation of gene expression in Huntington's disease. The results pave the way for the development of new treatment strategies for diseases that involve impairment of the basic mechanism by which the body's cells can break down and recycle their own component parts. This process, called autophagy, is disrupted in for example Huntington's and other neurodegenerative diseases.

Scientists take step toward new, targeted lung cancer treatment

Scientists have identified a key molecular player in a subtype of lung cancer which could lead to a new way to tackle the disease, according to research published in Nature Communications.

Study sheds light on how brain lets animals hunt for food by following smells

Most animals have a keen sense of smell, which assists them in everyday tasks. Now, a new study led by researchers at NYU School of Medicine sheds light on exactly how animals follow smells.

Dehydration alters human brain shape and activity, slackens task performance

When dehydration strikes, part of the brain can swell, neural signaling can intensify, and doing monotonous tasks can get harder.

I hear what you say! Or do I?

Even with an acute sense of hearing adults don't always pick up exactly what someone has said. That's because from childhood to adulthood we rely on vision to understand speech and this can influence our perception of sound.

New ESMO tumor DNA scale helps match patients with cancer to optimal targeted medicines

A new scale for tumour DNA mutations which will simplify and standardise choices for targeted cancer treatment has been agreed by leading cancer specialists in Europe and North America. The scale, called ESCAT (ESMO Scale for Clinical Actionability of molecular Targets), is published this week in the Annals of Oncology. It aims to optimise patient care by making it easier to identify patients with cancer who are likely to respond to precision medicines, and help make treatment more cost effective.

Gene therapy vectors carrying the telomerase gene do not increase the risk of cancer

Negative results and findings in science are perhaps less newsworthy, but they are no less important. In fact, negative results in a cancer study have demonstrated that a possible new therapeutic pathway against idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis and other diseases associated with short telomeres is, in fact, safe. Researchers from the Spanish National Cancer Research Centre (CNIO) have shown in a new study that the gene therapy with telomerase, proven effective in mice against diseases caused by excessive telomere shortening and aging, does not cause cancer or increase cancer risk, even in a cancer-prone setting. Their paper has been published in the journal PLoS Genetics .

Research informs new national cervical cancer screening recommendation

A comprehensive analysis of eight clinical trials and four cohort studies on cervical cancer screening by researchers from UC Davis and Kaiser Permanente Northwest has found that while Pap smears are still highly effective for detecting pre-cancerous cells and cancer, testing for the virus that causes these cancers also is an excellent screening tool.

Annual pap test a 'thing of the past?'

The United States Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) has released new recommendations on screening for cervical cancer. These latest recommendations continue the trend of decreasing participant burden by lengthening screening intervals, making the "annual Pap" a historical artifact. Since its introduction 75 years ago, exfoliative cytology commonly known as the Pap test has been the "gold-standard" screening test for cervical cancer.

Lower-risk malaria regions are breeding grounds for drug-resistant strains

New drug-resistant strains of the parasite that causes malaria tend to evolve in regions with a lower risk of malaria. This is because in hard-hit areas with high transmission rates, like sub-Saharan Africa, they get outcompeted by the more common, drug-sensitive strains inside the human host. In such high-transmission settings, it takes a long time for drug-resistant strains to take hold, but once they do, they can spread very rapidly, according to a new study publishing on August 21 in the open access journal PLOS Biology, by Mary Bushman of Emory University and her colleagues.

New method may allow country-level real-time surveillance of drug-resistant tuberculosis

Global tuberculosis control and elimination will require detailed real-time information on the location of individuals with the disease, the presence of drug resistance, and the patterns of transmission. The surveys currently used are only conducted periodically and are not sufficient to effectively control tuberculosis, which causes more than 4,500 deaths daily. This week in PLOS Medicine, Karen Jacobson, from the Boston University School of Medicine and Boston Medical Center, and colleagues, describe a new technique for linking samples submitted for tuberculosis testing to the individuals who provided the samples and the location from where they were submitted, in a way that can provide the continuous national surveillance necessary for eradicating tuberculosis and drug-resistant tuberculosis.

If you've got MS, exercise means much more than moving

For people with multiple sclerosis, the meaning of exercise stretches way beyond health and keeping fit, shows new research revealing what life's really like with the condition.

STAT3 can be a therapeutic target for chronic active EBV infection, a fatal disorder

Chronic active Epstein-Barr virus infection (CAEBV) is an EBV-positive T- or NK-cell neoplasm accompanied by sustained systemic inflammation. Many studies have attempted to understand the case of CAEBV; none have provided a clear explanation until now.

New in­form­a­tion on the brain areas linked to tact­ile sense and meta­cog­nit­ive abil­ity

According to the results of a new doctoral thesis by Juha Gogulski, magnetic stimulation of prefrontal cortex affected subjects' performance in tactile tasks and their ability to evaluate their performance.

UK group warns hospitals could run out of drugs post Brexit

A group that represents U.K. hospitals and ambulance services has warned that its members may run out of drugs if Britain leaves the European Union without an agreement on future relations.

In the midst of opioid crisis, treatment for drug-dependent newborns evolves

Dr. Jodi Jackson has worked for years to address infant mortality in Kansas. Often, that means she treats newborns in a high-tech neonatal intensive care unit with sophisticated equipment whirring and beeping. And that is exactly the wrong place for an infant like Lili.

Scientist explores the nexus between appetite and psychology

Rachel Herz, an adjunct assistant professor in Brown's Department of Psychiatry and Human Behavior, arrives at an East Greenwich, Rhode Island, café feeling stressed. She'd lost a document when her computer crashed and she isn't sure how to retrieve it. "If I were an emotional eater, I'd be running to get a huge slice of cheesecake," she says with a laugh.

Online suicide and the dark psychology of internet insult forums

Leon Jenkins was 43 when he took his own life in July 2018. He livestreamed his suicide on an internet forum where users can freely – and viciously – insult, berate, provoke and abuse each other. The idea is to make people leave the site when they can take no more.

Mental health—ASMR videos could be a new digital therapy

You may know "ASMR" as the niche genre of YouTube video which people watch on tablets and laptops to help them relax, perhaps before bed or in the lull of a Sunday afternoon. These videos typically involve someone role-playing a mundane professional service, such as giving you a haircut, a massage, or booking you in for a doctors' appointment.

Exercises with impact benefit bone health

Osteoporosis is associated with high morbidity, mortality and economic costs amongst older people. For prevention to be successful more needs to be known about the right forms of exercise to take.

Study identifies 'compulsivity circuit' in heavy alcohol drinkers

Heavy alcohol drinkers attempt to acquire alcohol despite the threat of a negative consequence more so than light drinkers, a study in Biological Psychiatry: Cognitive Neuroscience and Neuroimaging has found, and this behavior is associated with unique activation of brain circuitry in heavy drinkers.

Ultrasound could improve early detection of vascular diseases, research shows

Ultrasound conducted before a patient develops symptoms could improve early detection of diseases in blood vessels, research led by the University of Leicester has shown.

Saving the brain with a new nerve agent antidote

Terror on a Tokyo subway, 1995; attacks on Syrian civilians, 2013 and 2017; assassinations in an airport in Kuala Lumpur, 2017; attempted assassination in London, 2018. Tremors, foaming at the mouth, seizures, respiratory shutdown, sometimes death. What do these events have in common? Poisoning via a nerve agent – a chemical warfare substance that disrupts communication between the nervous system and muscles and organs.

How to feed your gut bacteria

Day 1 of the meal plan seems simple enough.

Alzheimer's linked to the brain's 'garbage disposal service'

Researchers in South Australia have found a genetic link between Alzheimer's disease and the endo-lysosomal system, a critical part of biological recycling machinery that maintains the health of brain cells.

Study: 'Sound' differences between age groups

By exploring differences in the way younger and older adults respond to sounds, Western neuroscientists have found that our brains become more sensitive to sounds as we age, likely leading to hearing challenges over a lifetime.

Predicting work status in patients with schizophrenia

Osaka University-led Japanese researchers clarified that intellectual deterioration (IQ decline) was related to work status in patients with schizophrenia. The researchers also proposed a method for estimating probabilities of work outcome in those patients based on related factors, such as IQ decline, social function, and psychiatric symptoms.

Explainer: What is loss aversion and is it real?

A recent study claims a core idea in behavioural economics – loss aversion – is a fallacy. Loss aversion is the theory that the pain of losing something is greater than the pleasure we feel by gaining something equivalent.

Kids' play is healthy, pediatricians' group says

(HealthDay)—Play is a child's most important work, preschool teachers like to say, and a new American Academy of Pediatrics report wholeheartedly agrees.

What do your earliest childhood memories say about you?

We experience thousands of events across childhood, and yet as adults we recall only a handful. Some might be "firsts" (our first ice cream, our first day at school), or significant life events (the birth of a sibling, moving house). Others are surprisingly trivial.

Six steps for promoting heart health in women

(HealthDay)—While the total number of U.S. deaths from heart disease has declined in recent years, it has stayed the same for younger women.

Babies need more than tummy time to strengthen necks and prevent flat heads

Supervised, awake tummy time is recommended to facilitate a baby's development and minimise flat head syndrome.

New research sheds light on why suicide is more common in autistic people

People who hide their autism by 'camouflaging' to try to fit into society, or who don't receive correct support are at higher risk of suicide, according to new research.

A depressed spouse may increase one's own cognitive decline, study finds

Researchers at Yale School of Public Health and their scientific partners have found that having a depressed spouse can increase one's own depressive symptoms as well as cognitive decline over time in late life. 

Clay fights MRSA, other superbugs in wounds

The use of mud or wet clay as a topical skin treatment, or poultice, is a common practice in many cultures. In fact, the concept of using mud as medicine goes back to the earliest times.

Seven percent of children in orthodontic care at 'high risk' for sleep disorders, according to new research

A child who is restless, hyperactive and can't concentrate could have a problem rooted in a source parents might not suspect: a sleep disorder.

Obesity linked to social class

While the rich get thinner, the poorest pile on the pounds. What accounts for this "social gradient," which results in obesity being most prevalent among the least well-off? The pleasure – tinged with guilt and anxiety – that they take in overeating is an explanation explored by a University of Huddersfield professor and his colleagues.

The hidden epidemic of compulsive hair pulling

Christina Pearson was 14 years old when she started pulling out her hair, creating bald patches on her head. She was taken to a psychiatrist, but in 1970 there was no name for her disorder, and certainly no treatment.

Infectious diseases treated on the spot

Point-of-care testing developed at Flinders University will be part of the rollout of new services targeting infectious diseases across remote Australia and also the Asia-Pacific.

World's largest study of catheters reveals major inconsistencies in clinical practice

New global research led by Western Sydney University has found major problems with the management of short peripheral catheters – with two thirds of catheter insertions found to be placed in non-recommended sites or at risk of failure, and one in five catheters found to be unnecessarily painful or malfunctioning.

Physicians rate communication during visit lower than patients

(HealthDay)—There is a lack of correlation between physician scores and those of others for physician-patient communication, according to a study published in the July/August issue of the Annals of Family Medicine.

Experts offer tips for provider appeal of denied medical claims

(HealthDay)—Knowing payer policies and regulatory requirements is critical to appealing denials, according to an article published in Medical Economics.

Odds of death up with exposure to pregabalin, opioids

(HealthDay)—Concomitant exposure to pregabalin and opioids is associated with increased odds of opioid-related death, according to a research letter published online Aug. 21 in the Annals of Internal Medicine.

New wave of complex street drugs puzzles emergency doctors

At a time when drug overdoses are becoming more prevalent and lethal, a new report provides a snapshot of regional illicit drug use and, for the first time, highlights the complexity of detecting and treating patients at hospital emergency departments for a severe drug-related event.

New compound advances into Phase 1 trial for pancreatic cancer

A compound discovered at Sanford Burnham Prebys Medical Discovery Institute (SBP) has advanced into a Phase 1 trial for metastatic pancreatic cancer. Called CEND-1 (scientifically known as iRGD), the compound was exclusively licensed in 2015 to a private company, DrugCendR Inc. The drug candidate was discovered in the laboratory of Erkki Ruoslahti, M.D., Ph.D., distinguished professor at SBP and founder, president and CEO of DrugCendR.

Untreated genital warts may increase risk of HIV transmission

A new study has shown that genital warts may promote HIV sexual transmission and, in turn, their treatment and prevention could help decrease the spread of the disease.

Study shows children with multidrug-resistant tuberculosis can be treated

The results of a large, international systematic review published in the journal PLOS Medicine show that tuberculosis treatment is successful in children with multidrug-resistant tuberculosis (MDR-TB). The study was used to inform the World Health Organization guidelines on treatment of MDR-TB in children.

Simple test could identify bladder cancer patients who won't respond to immunotherapy

Patients who are unlikely to benefit from a commonly used immunotherapy for bladder cancer could be identified by a simple blood test, according to researchers at Brighton and Sussex Medical School (BSMS).

Largest brain study of 62,454 scans identifies drivers of brain aging

In the largest known brain imaging study, scientists from Amen Clinics (Costa Mesa, CA), Google, John's Hopkins University, University of California, Los Angeles and the University of California, San Francisco evaluated 62,454 brain SPECT (single photon emission computed tomography) scans of more than 30,000 individuals from 9 months old to 105 years of age to investigate factors that accelerate brain aging. SPECT tomography) evaluates regional cerebral blood flow in the brain that is reduced in various disorders.

For women undergoing IVF, is fresh or frozen embryo transfer best?

The world's first baby born via in-vitro fertilization turned 40 years old this summer. Still, after four decades, IVF is a relatively new field with ongoing debate on how to get the best results for families who have placed their hopes—and often their personal savings—into fertility treatment.

A new way to target high rates of obesity

A novel drug is being touted as a major step forward in the battle against Australia's escalating rates of obesity and associated metabolic diseases. As it stands, 2 in 3 adults in Australia are classified as being overweight or obese. A long-term study between researchers at the Centenary Institute and UNSW Sydney has led to the creation of a drug which targets an enzyme linked to insulin resistance—a key contributor of metabolic diseases, such as Type II diabetes.

Large study finds HPV vaccination does not negatively impact fertility in adolescents

Adolescents who receive recommended vaccinations, including for human papillomavirus, have no increased risk of primary ovarian insufficiency, also known as premature menopause, according to a Kaiser Permanente study published today in Pediatrics.

Scientists identify new genetic regulators of regeneration

Scientists at the MDI Biological Laboratory and the University of Maine have discovered that genetic material in the cell that was previously thought to be "junk" because of its apparent lack of function likely plays a part in regulating genetic circuits responsible for regeneration in highly regenerative animals.

Antipsychotic use in older adults after heart surgery

Delirium is the medical term for an abrupt, rapid change in mental function that goes well beyond the typical forgetfulness of aging. Delirium can cause you to become confused, potentially aggressive, agitated, sleepy, and/or inactive. Post-operative delirium can occur after you've had an operation, and is the most common complication older adults experience after they have surgery. Older adults are at high risk for post-operative delirium after they have heart surgery.

Genetic model offers elegant tool for testing Parkinson's disease therapies

For the past decade, Parkinson's disease researchers have relied on the experimental equivalent of using a sledgehammer to tune a guitar to test new therapies for the disease. This may be a reason clinical trials of promising neuroprotective drugs fail. But, in new research published today in Nature Parkinson's Disease, University of British Columbia researchers may have found the ideal tool for the job.

Sharp increase in falls in women during midlife—new international research

Falls are not just a problem of advanced age, according to researchers in Trinity College Dublin, who have identified a sharp increase in falls after the age of 40, particularly in women.

Exodus of Saudi medical trainees reveals vulnerability of Canadian health care

The sudden loss of Saudi medical trainees who must leave Canada in the next two weeks will negatively affect patient care, which should serve as a wake-up call to governments to increase the number of funded residency and fellowship positions for Canadian medical students, argues Dr. Matthew Stanbrook in an editorial in CMAJ (Canadian Medical Association Journal).

Education program successful at reducing forced sex in South African adolescents

Southern Africa has some of the highest rates of sexual assault in the world, with 20 percent of adolescent girls and boys reporting that they have been forced to have sex. In many cases, they are also the perpetrators: In one survey, 12 percent of boys and 5 percent of girls admitted they have forced someone else onto sex.

Depressed patients see quality of life improve with nerve stimulation

People with depression who are treated with nerve stimulation experience significant improvements in quality of life, even when their depression symptoms don't completely subside, according to results of a national study led by researchers at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis.

New type 1 diabetes therapy shows promise for long-term reversal in both humans, dogs

What if instead of daily insulin injections or wearing pumps, just getting a shot every few months could reverse Type 1 diabetes for you—or your dog?

Certain antibiotic-resistant infections on the rise, new research shows

Nearly six percent of urinary tract infections analyzed by a California emergency department were caused by drug-resistant bacteria in a one-year study period, according to new research in Annals of Emergency Medicine. The bacteria were resistant to most of the commonly used antibiotics. And, in many cases, patients had no identifiable risk for this kind of infection, the study found.

Sentinel lymph node mapping most cost-effective for uterine CA

(HealthDay)—Sentinel lymph node mapping has the lowest costs and highest quality-adjusted survival compared to both routine and selective lymphadenectomy for managing low-risk endometrial carcinoma, according to a study published in the July issue of Obstetrics & Gynecology.

Preventable adverse drug events usually of minor severity in kids

(HealthDay)—The incidence of preventable adverse drug events (pADEs) is zero to 17 per 1,000 patient-days in general pediatric wards and zero to 29 in intensive care units, with most pADEs of minor severity, according to a review published online Aug. 10 in Pediatrics.

Hypnosis doesn't cut post-op pain in breast cancer surgery

(HealthDay)—Hypnosis before general anesthesia does not reduce postoperative breast pain among patients undergoing minor breast cancer surgery, according to a study published online Aug. 17 in JAMA Network Open.

Side effects of biologics for rheumatic Dz may up anxiety

(HealthDay)—Potential side effects of biological agents may increase anxiety in patients with rheumatic disease, according to research published in the June issue of the International Journal of Rheumatic Diseases.

Young, growing athletes at high risk for ACL injuries

(HealthDay)—Young, growing athletes are at high risk for anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) injuries, according to a report published by Penn State Health News.

Interim guidance provided for men with possible Zika infection

(HealthDay)—Interim guidance recommends that men with possible Zika virus infection wait three months before trying to conceive or engaging in unprotected sex, according to research published in the Aug. 10 issue of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.

Large number of presumed sudden cardiac deaths are not

(HealthDay)—A large percentage of deaths attributed to cardiac arrest are neither sudden nor unexpected, according to a study published recently in Circulation.

Poisonings from kratom, sold as an herbal supplement, are rising. But no one knows how much

An unregulated herbal product that advocates say can relieve pain and help with opioid withdrawal has been linked to at least four deaths in the Philadelphia region, but with many authorities failing to track kratom poisonings, there's no way to know if there are more deaths related to the substance.

Towards enhanced regenerative medicine to cure epilepsy

At the border between regenerative medicine and neural engineering lies enhanced regenerative medicine. Using brain tissue modulated by electronic components, EU research has tackled the most common form of epilepsy.

Today's teens increasingly disconnected from books, TV, movies

As modern teenagers increasingly turn to digital technology, they are rejecting legacy media—books, newspapers and television—at an alarming rate.

Antibiotics or not? Improved method of diagnosing infection may soon help doctors decide

Researchers have found a novel way to diagnose and manage patients with fever. How? Through new biomarkers that can tell the difference between bacterial and viral infection.

Food in elderly care better with dieticians

While both the Swedish National Food Agency and the Swedish National Board of Health and Welfare in recent years have come up with new guidelines for food for the elderly, not all municipalities conform to them by any means. There are different conditions and levels of aspiration that govern the commitment. Municipalities that employ dieticians are most successful. This is shown by a new doctoral thesis from Uppsala University.

FDA research informs smokeless tobacco prevention messaging for at-risk youth

Recent findings from formative research conducted with rural, non-Hispanic White males aged 12-17 years informed the development of health messaging for the U.S. Food and Drug Administration's (FDA's) first nationwide smokeless tobacco (SLT) public education campaign. The youth were receptive to messaging that conveyed authenticity and contained straightforward facts about the health consequences of SLT use. Messages which portrayed the progression from familiar short-term health effects to more serious long-term consequences of SLT use, also resonated with the youth. The findings are described in detail in an article published in Health Equity.

Pennsylvania case could affect evidence for malpractice defense

(HealthDay)—The Pennsylvania Supreme Court has agreed to hear a case that could affect what evidence physicians may present in defense during medical malpractice suits, according to an article published in the American Medical Association's AMA Wire.

Biology news

Leaves possess a molecular compass

Leaves provide us with food, forest canopies and football fields. Every leaf grows from only a few cells.

Researchers discover key to mass producing beneficial plant compounds

Purdue University scientists have discovered the switch in plants that turns off production of terpenoids, compounds that play roles in plant physiology and are used by humans in everything from fragrances and flavoring to biofuels and pharmaceuticals.

Mapping of cells and proteins improved with combined help of gamers and AI

Building on a map that shows hundreds of thousands of microscopic images of human cells, an international research team is working with the gaming community and with artificial intelligence to gain a more granular understanding of patterns of proteins arranged within cells.

Trapdoor spider 'stunt double' study reveals summer wasp threat

Curtin researchers using 'stunt spiders' found male trapdoor spiders leaving their burrows to mate faced predators such as birds, lizards and rodents all year round while wasps posed a threat only in summer.

A common ancestral gene causes body segmentation in spiders and insects

Scientists have pinpointed a key gene that controls segmentation during spider development, which reveals a further similarity to the control of segmentation in insects, a study in eLife reports.

Plant protein complex plays large role in important growth and development process

A little-studied plant cellular complex plays an essential role in a biological process—vacuole fusion—critical to plant growth and development, according to new research from North Carolina State University. The findings shed light on complex and important plant processes as well as on how plants may have adapted to respond to environmental signals.

Less drain on freshwater supplies with seawater fuel discovery

Researchers have found that seawater can replace freshwater to produce the sustainable fuel Bioethanol, reducing the need to drain precious resources.

New method of genome editing not only gives the user complete spatiotemporal control but also treads lightly on DNA

A major obstacle to in-cell genome editing is, well, the cell itself.

Researchers target protein that protects bacteria's DNA 'recipes'

Bacteria cause many serious illnesses, from food poisoning to pneumonia. The challenge for scientists is that disease-causing bacteria are extraordinarily resilient. For example, when bacteria like Escherichia coli (E. coli) undergo starvation, they massively reorganize their bacterial DNA, allowing them to survive stressful conditions.

Genetic error led humans to evolve bigger, but more vulnerable, brains

Newly-discovered genes that helped supersize human brains along with DNA retrieved from extinct humans, which can still be found in people living today, are expanding scientists' understanding of how our species evolved.

Mechanism behind orchid beauty revealed

Researchers at Tohoku University in Japan have identified the gene related to the greenish flower mutation in the Habenaria orchid. Associate Professor Akira Kanno and Ph.D. candidate Mai Mitoma have discovered that the greenish flower mutation is caused by a retrotransposon insertion in one of the floral homeotic genes in the Habenaria orchid. The modification of this gene by a genetic transformation system enables the development of greenish flowers in orchids and other plant species.

Mysterious eels travel thousands of miles. This scientist wants to uncover their secrets

American eels are slimy, sinuous creatures that slither their slender, scaled bodies through water both fresh and salty.

Protein interaction helps Yersinia cause disease

Researchers at Umeå University, Sweden, in collaboration with an international team, have discovered a new mechanism for interaction between two proteins that are vital for the Yersinia pseudotuberculosis bacteria's pathogenic ability.

New method could save iconic English chalk grasslands

A three-year experiment by ecologists from The University of Manchester, the Centre for Ecology & Hydrology and Lancaster University has revealed how our iconic chalk grasslands—damaged by intensive farming—could be regenerated.

Engineering scientists use bacteria to create biosynthetic silk threads stronger and more tensile than before

Spider silk is among the strongest and toughest materials in the natural world, as strong as some steel alloys with a toughness even greater than bulletproof Kevlar. Spider silk's unmatched combination of strength and toughness have made this protein-based material desirable for many applications ranging from super thin surgical sutures to projectile resistant clothing. Unfortunately, due to spiders' territorial and cannibalistic nature, their silk has been impossible to mass produce, so practical applications have yet to materialize.

Even a single species of bacteria can positively affect soils and plants

Microbes deep in the soil influence plant health by releasing potent natural antibiotics such as PCA (phenazine-1-carboxylic acid). PCA-producing bacteria thrive on roots of dryland wheat throughout the Columbia Plateau, a major wheat-producing region in central Washington and Oregon, but their role in this important ecosystem was something of a mystery. Now the work of an international team of scientists provides direct evidence for the first time that these bacteria affect not only the wheat, but the soil around it.

More manatees have died in Florida so far this year than in all of 2017. Here's why

The number of manatee deaths in Florida this year has already exceeded the total for all of 2017.

Sex in plants requires thrust

In a paper to be published in the September 2018 issue of TECHNOLOGY, the thrust produced by the microscopic organ delivering sperm cells in plants has now been measured using microfluidic technology. A team of nano and microsystems engineers and plant biologists at the University of Montreal (now known as Université de Montréal), McGill University and Concordia University devised a microchip that enabled the researchers to measure how much force the sperm delivery tools used by plants exert when negotiating the female flower tissues to accomplish fertilization.

Ancestor of all life on Earth evolved earlier than we thought, according to our new timescale

Science may have enabled us to travel in space and trace the history of the entire universe, but it has not yet been able to answer exactly how and when life first arose on our planet. Traditionally, scientists have used the fossil record to try to answer these questions. Yet, as palaeontologists are all too aware, fossils are increasingly hard to find as we move backwards in time.

Cameroon pangolin traffickers caught in the act

Police in Cameroon have shut down an international poaching gang after catching six traffickers carrying more than 700 kilos of pangolin scales, a conservation group said Tuesday.

Two koalas die in a month at Belgian zoo

Two of the three koalas at a top Belgian zoo have died in the space of a month, officials said Tuesday while rejecting fears of an "epidemic" among the Australian marsupials.

Study pioneers humane feline research facility

Spay and neuter services can reduce the number of feral and free-roaming cats, but the invasive procedures are expensive and require a high level of veterinary training. Researchers have considered an injectable contraceptive vaccine—GonaCon—that has been shown to be effective in several mammals, including deer, horses, and laboratory-raised cats. But field-testing such a product is complicated. That's why a group of University of Illinois researchers created a unique study environment designed to bridge the gap between the lab and the real world. In short, it's a cat wonderland in which resident cats help to advance science.

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