Thursday, February 6, 2020

Science X Newsletter Thursday, Feb 6

Dear Reader ,

Here is your customized Science X Newsletter for February 6, 2020:

Spotlight Stories Headlines

3-D trapping of Rydberg atoms in holographic optical bottle beam traps

A vision for the creation of 6G communications

Collaboration lets researchers 'read' proteins for new properties

Key molecular machine in cells pictured in detail for the first time

Water-conducting membrane allows carbon dioxide to transform into fuel more efficiently

Why bumble bees are going extinct in time of 'climate chaos'

CRISPR-edited immune cells can survive and thrive after infusion into cancer patients

World's most powerful particle accelerator one big step closer

Rosetta data reveals process behind color-changing chameleon comet

Study shows acceleration of global mean ocean circulation since 1990s

Researchers develop a roadmap for growth of new solar cells

Team finds that their cancer-fighting compound fights obesity and diabetes, too

Sediment loading key to predicting post-wildfire debris flows

US astronaut returns to Earth after longest mission by woman

Multiple eco-crises could trigger 'systemic collapse': scientists

Astronomy & Space news

Rosetta data reveals process behind color-changing chameleon comet

A grand synthesis of Rosetta data has shown how its target comet repeatedly changed color during the two years it was watched by the spacecraft. The chameleon comet's nucleus became progressively less red as it made its close pass around the sun, and then red again as it returned to deep space.

US astronaut returns to Earth after longest mission by woman

NASA's Christina Koch returned to Earth safely on Thursday after shattering the spaceflight record for female astronauts with a stay of almost 11 months aboard the International Space Station.

Black holes eat stars in variable mood lighting

When a black hole chews up a star, it produces visible light or X-rays, but astronomers have almost never detected both types of radiation. Astronomer Peter Jonker (SRON / Radboud University) and his colleagues have now spotted a number of captured stars with an X-ray telescope a few years after they were discovered in optical light. It appears that black holes all dine in the same way after all, while the mood lighting varies according to a fixed pattern. Their study is published in the Astrophysical Journal.

For the first time, an ESA deep space antenna controlled two spacecraft with one dish

For the first time, an ESA deep space antenna has sent commands to two ESA spacecraft, simultaneously, at the Red Planet.

'Racing certainty' there's life on Europa and Mars, says leading UK space scientist

It's 'almost a racing certainty' there's alien life on Jupiter's moon Europa—and Mars could be hiding primitive microorganisms, too.

Solar Orbiter: Ready for launch

The fairing of the US Atlas V 411 rocket with ESA's Solar Orbiter spacecraft inside at the Astrotech payload processing facility near Kennedy Space Center in Florida during launch preparations on 21 January 2020.

Technology news

A vision for the creation of 6G communications

Now that the standardization of fifth-generation (5G) communications has been accomplished, with the 5G network set to be launched this year, researchers have already started thinking about what a 6G network could look like. An interesting perspective on the future development of 6G can be found in a paper published in Nature Electronics, carried out by researchers at King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST), in Saudi Arabia.

Researchers develop a roadmap for growth of new solar cells

Materials called perovskites show strong potential for a new generation of solar cells, but they've had trouble gaining traction in a market dominated by silicon-based solar cells. Now, a study by researchers at MIT and elsewhere outlines a roadmap for how this promising technology could move from the laboratory to a significant place in the global solar market.

Patches to make Sudo utility less open to abuse

A flaw that gave out root privileges gets patched. It is a utility that, said Dan Goodin in Ars Technica, can be found in "dozens of Unix-like operating systems."

Improving pavement networks by predicting the future

With around 4.18 million miles of roads in the United States, planning pavement maintenance can seem like a daunting process.

Could the next generation of particle accelerators come out of a 3-D printer?

Imagine being able to manufacture complex devices whenever you want and wherever you are. It would create unforeseen possibilities even in the most remote locations, such as building spare parts or new components on board a spacecraft. 3-D printing, or additive manufacturing, could be a way of doing just that. All you would need is the materials the device will be made of, a printer and a computer that controls the process.

Energy choices can be contagious – but why? New insights into peer influence

A growing body of research shows that the behavior of peers has a significant influence on an individual's energy-related decisions, whether it's choosing to install solar panels or to purchase a hybrid vehicle. In short, personal energy choices can be contagious.

Apps could take up less space on your phone, thanks to new 'streaming' software

If you resort to deleting apps when your phone's storage space is full, researchers have a solution.

Toyota logs nine-month profit gain, upgrades annual forecasts

Japanese car giant Toyota on Thursday reported a surge in net profit on record sales for the nine months to December, and upgraded its full-year profit forecasts.

Staff making iPhones in central China plant to be quarantined

Workers making iPhones at tech giant Foxconn's plant in central China will be quarantined for up to two weeks, the company said Thursday, as cities on the mainland tighten their defences against the deadly coronavirus outbreak.

Airbnb to limit bookings by people under 25 in Canada

People under 25 will no longer be able to rent local listings for entire homes on Airbnb in Canada, the company announced Wednesday after a fatal shooting at a Toronto apartment booked through the website.

Child safety groups urge Facebook to halt encryption plans

More than 100 child protection organizations Thursday urged Facebook to halt plans for strong encryption of all its platforms, saying that would allow predators to operate freely.

Huawei sues Verizon over alleged patent infringement

Chinese telecoms giant Huawei said Thursday it had filed two lawsuits in Texas courts against Verizon that accuse the US wireless carrier of patent infringement.

Google Maps marks 15-year milestone with new features

Google Maps marked 15 years on the road Thursday with the rollout of new features for the popular mobile app which has helped move navigation into the digital age.

Nokia reports higher profit, boosts 5G investments

Finnish telecom equipment maker Nokia Corp. has reported a rise in fourth-quarter earnings mainly due to cost savings and pledged to boost investments in next-generation 5G networks, of which it is one of the world's main suppliers.

Twitter surges as global user growth revives

Twitter shares jumped Thursday after an update showing it added millions of new users and boosted ad revenue in the fourth quarter, sparking optimism over its growth prospects.

Engineers mix and match materials to make new stretchy electronics

At the heart of any electronic device is a cold, hard computer chip, covered in a miniature city of transistors and other semiconducting elements. Because computer chips are rigid, the electronic devices that they power, such as our smartphones, laptops, watches, and televisions, are similarly inflexible.

Self-driving the longest route yet

A project researching the latest autonomous vehicle technologies has successfully completed a 230-mile self-navigated journey on UK roads.

Making memes accessible for people with visual impairments

People with visual impairments use social media like everyone else, often with the help of screen reader software. But that technology falls short when it encounters memes, which don't include alternate text, or alt text, to describe what's depicted in the image.

Engineering a better world using mirrors, sun and steam

Partha Dutta, a professor of electrical, computer, and systems engineering at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, envisions a not-so-distant future where even the most remote parts of the world would have access to clean and renewable energy. His vision wouldn't require a large power grid or expensive technology. Instead, he believes it could be accomplished using simple mirrors, local resources, and the sun.

Testing shows drones can use autonomous technology to dodge other air traffic

In the drone industry, it's called "the detect and avoid problem." Enabling drones to sense nearby aircraft and move out of their way has long been one of the most formidable barriers between a technology narrowly confined to specialized applications and one reaching its potential.

Charging your phone using a public USB port? Beware of 'juice jacking'

Have you ever used a public charging station to charge your mobile phone when it runs out of battery? If so, watch out for "juice jacking."

New production process for perovskite cells: Fast, cheap track to new types of solar cells

The semiconductor perovskite is seen as a new hope to bring the production price of solar cells down below that of silicon used so far. Empa is developing new manufacturing processes to make perovskite solar cells not only cheaper but also faster to produce and make them ready for industrial use.

Online dating goes mainstream despite some doubts: US survey

Americans' use of online apps and dating websites to meet potential partners is growing even if many people express concerns about participating in these services, a survey showed Thursday.

US lets autonomous vehicle bypass human-driver safety rules

For the first time, the U.S. government's highway safety agency has approved a company's request to deploy a self-driving vehicle that doesn't meet federal safety standards that apply to cars and trucks driven by humans.

Design approach may help fix bias in artificial intelligence

Bias in artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning programs is well established. Researchers from North Carolina State University and Pennsylvania State University are now proposing that software developers incorporate the concept of "feminist design thinking" into their development process as a way of improving equity—particularly in the development of software used in the hiring process.

FAA says Boeing MAX test flight could come in weeks

Boeing shares rallied Thursday following a top US air safety regulator that a certification flight for the 737 MAX could occur within weeks.

Tinder a good example of how people use technology for more than we think

Tinder's meteoric rise in popularity has cemented its position as the go-to dating app for millions of young and not-so-young users. Although it is widely known as a platform to facilitate hookups and casual dating, some of the app's estimated 50 million+ worldwide users are employing it for something altogether different.

US agency to hear patent complaint over Google speakers

A US trade panel said Thursday it was investigating a complaint that Google infringed on patented technology of smart speaker maker Sonos.

Uber loses $1.1B investing in food delivery, driverless cars

Uber continued to lose money as it builds up its food delivery business and develops technology for driverless cars, but revenue for its rides business nearly tripled as the company picked up more passengers around the world.

Inkjet printing technology for battery elements

A group of St. Petersburg scientists has proposed a new method of manufacturing electrodes for lithium-ion batteries that power laptops, smartphones and tablets. The researchers have shown that these elements can be printed with an inkjet printer, which will reduce the electrode thickness by 10 to 20 times and open up new possibilities for manufacturers of compact electronics. Their article has been published in the journal Energy Technology.

Crawling the invisible web genetically

The world-wide web has grown immensely since its academic and research inception in 1991, and its subsequent expansion into the public and commercial domains. Initially, it was a network of hyperlinked pages and other digital resources. Very early on, it became obvious that some resources were so vast that it would make more sense to generate the materials required by individual users dynamically rather than storing every single digital entity as a unique item.

Fiat Chrysler profit skids as sales slow

US-Italian automaker Fiat Chrysler said Thursday its net earnings fell by nearly a fifth last year as sales slowed, although both rose in the final quarter.

Artificial intelligence brings greater precision to operations

Operations based on an MRI or CT scan are made trickier by the fact that people can never lie completely still. Doctoral candidate Koen Eppenhof has shown that an algorithm based on deep learning can be used to correct for the inevitable movements.

Fiat Chrysler: prolonged virus trouble can hurt Europe plant

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles said Thursday that while the virus outbreak in China posed no immediate business risk, production at one European plant could be affected if supply chains remain blocked.

US should buy control of Nokia, Ericsson to fight Huawei: attorney general

The United States and its allies should take controlling stakes in Nokia, Ericsson or both to battle Chinese telecoms giant Huawei's dominance of the 5G market, US Attorney general Bill Barr said Thursday.

Medicine & Health news

CRISPR-edited immune cells can survive and thrive after infusion into cancer patients

Genetically-edited immune cells can persist, thrive, and function months after a cancer patient receives them, according to new data published by researchers from the Abramson Cancer Center of the University of Pennsylvania. The team showed cells removed from patients and brought back into the lab setting were able to kill cancer months after their original manufacturing and infusion. Further analysis of these cells confirmed they were successfully edited in three specific ways, marking the first-ever sanctioned investigational use of multiple edits to the human genome. This is the first U.S. clinical trial to test the gene editing approach in humans, and the publication of this new data today in Science follows on the initial report last year that researchers were able to use CRISPR/Cas9 technology to successfully edit three cancer patients' immune cells. Penn is conducting the ongoing study in cooperation with the Parker Institute for Cancer Immunotherapy and Tmunity Therapeutics.

Team finds that their cancer-fighting compound fights obesity and diabetes, too

Eric Prossnitz, Ph.D., and his team hope to help 93 million obese Americans fight their fat.

Toxic protein, linked to Alzheimer's and neurodegenerative diseases, exposed in new detail

The protein tau has long been implicated in Alzheimer's and a host of other debilitating brain diseases. But scientists have struggled to understand exactly how tau converts from its normal, functional form into a misfolded, harmful one. Now, researchers at Columbia University's Zuckerman Institute and Mayo Clinic in Florida have used cutting-edge technologies to see tau in unprecedented detail. By analyzing brain tissue from patients, this research team has revealed that modifications to the tau protein may influence the different ways it can misfold in a person's brain cells. These differences are closely linked to the type of neurodegenerative disease that will develop—and how quickly that disease will spread throughout the brain.

Molecular 'switch' reverses chronic inflammation and aging

Chronic inflammation, which results when old age, stress or environmental toxins keep the body's immune system in overdrive, can contribute to a variety of devastating diseases, from Alzheimer's and Parkinson's to diabetes and cancer.

Antioxidant reverses BPD-induced fertility damage in worms

From plastics to pesticides, it seems like every week delivers fresh news about the dangers of endocrine disruptors—chemicals in the environment that alter the body's hormones and can lead to reproductive, developmental, neurologic and immune problems and cancer.

Engineered living-cell blood vessel provides new insights to progeria

Biomedical engineers at Duke University have developed the most advanced disease model for blood vessels to date and used it to discover a unique role of the endothelium in Hutchinson-Gilford Progeria Syndrome. Called progeria for short, the devastating and extremely rare genetic disease causes symptoms resembling accelerated aging in children.

Two enzymes control liver damage in NASH, study shows

As much as 12 percent of adults in the United States are living with nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH), an aggressive condition that can lead to cirrhosis or liver cancer. After identifying a molecular pathway that allows NASH to progress into liver cell death, University of California San Diego School of Medicine researchers were able to halt further liver damage in mouse models with NASH.

Scientists discover how rogue communications between cells lead to leukemia

New research has deciphered how rogue communications in blood stem cells can cause leukaemia.

Discovering new details of the human intestinal mesentery

A new discovery regarding the human intestinal mesentery may radically change the fundamentals of anatomy and embryology and related surgical approaches.

Researchers find that ubiquitous protein plays lead role in cell survival

The protein known as polycystin 2 is present in every cell in the body, but until now scientists knew little about its purpose. Yale researchers have discovered that it protects against cell death, making it a potential target for therapies to treat a variety of diseases of the liver and kidneys, as well as for brain aneurysms, heart disease, and cancer.

Hybrid microscope could bring digital biopsy to the clinic

By adding infrared capability to the ubiquitous, standard optical microscope, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign hope to bring cancer diagnosis into the digital era.

Breathing may change your mind about free will

Have you ever gone ahead and eaten that piece of chocolate, despite yourself?

Abnormal bone formation after trauma explained and reversed in mice

Hip replacements, severe burns, spinal cord injuries, blast injuries, traumatic brain injuries—these seemingly disparate traumas can each lead to a painful complication during the healing process called heterotopic ossification. Heterotopic ossification is abnormal bone formation within muscle and soft tissues, an unfortunately common phenomenon that typically occurs weeks after an injury or surgery. Patients with heterotopic ossification experience decreased range of motion, swelling and pain.

Study provides new understanding of mitochondria genome, potential for new avenues of treatment for cancers

A study led by The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center furthered understanding about mitochondria, the cell components known as the "powerhouse of the cell." Knowing more about the genome is crucial given that mitochondria play important roles in tumorigenesis.

Religious, moral beliefs may exacerbate concerns about porn addiction

Moral or religious beliefs may lead some people to believe they are addicted to pornography even when their porn use is low or average, according to new research published by the American Psychological Association.

VA's 'Healthy Teaching Kitchens' benefit from holistic approach

Over the next decade, older adults will grow to become 20 percent of the US population. A new paper in the Journal of Nutrition Education and Behavior found Healthy Teaching Kitchen programs are great vehicles for nutrition education specifically among older veterans.

Team develops model to predict hernia surgery recovery outcomes

Could patients experience less pain and possibly have better recovery outcomes if their fears or emotional issues were addressed before surgery?

Study reveals global breast size dissatisfaction

A new global study has found that the majority of women are unhappy with the size of their breasts—a finding that has important public health implications.

Pregnant women with very high blood pressure face greater heart disease risk

Women with high blood pressure in their first pregnancy have a greater risk of heart attack or cardiovascular death, according to a Rutgers study.

China scrambles to find beds for virus patients as deaths hit 563

China scrambled to find bed space for thousands of newly infected patients on Thursday, as the death toll from the novel coronavirus soared to 563.

10 more sick with virus on one of two isolated cruise ships

Ten more people were sickened with a new virus aboard one of two quarantined cruise ships with some 5,400 passengers and crew aboard, health officials in Japan said Thursday, as China reported 73 more deaths and announced that the first group of patients were expected to start taking a new antiviral drug.

Chinese scientists ask for patent on US drug to fight virus

Scientists in the city at the center of China's virus outbreak have applied to patent a drug made by U.S. company Gilead Sciences Inc. to treat the disease, possibly fueling conflict over technology policy that helped trigger Washington's tariff war with Beijing.

Europe dodges US fentanyl crisis but for how long?

When 18-year-old Joseph bought a pill at a fun fair in the French Riviera resort of Cannes, he was convinced it was morphine.

False virus cure claims infect the internet

Gargle salt water, use herbal eyedrops, steam-clean a face mask—false claims about how to combat a deadly coranavirus epidemic emerging out of China are flooding the internet.

Massive genome study unlocks secrets of how cancers form

A massive, decade-long study sequencing the genomes of dozens of cancers has revealed the secrets of how tumours form and may pave the way for better and more targeted treatment.

How hereditary genetic testing results impact breast cancer treatment

Women with early stage breast cancer who test positive for an inherited genetic variant are not always receiving cancer treatment that follows current guidelines, a new study finds.

Brain tumor surgery that pushes boundaries boosts patients survival

Survival may more than double for adults with glioblastoma, the most common and deadly type of brain tumor, if neurosurgeons remove the surrounding tissue as aggressively as they remove the cancerous core of the tumor.

For aging patients, one missed doctor's visit can lead to vision loss

Missing a single ophthalmology appointment over a two-year period was associated with decreased visual acuity for patients with macular degeneration—a leading cause of permanent vision loss in the elderly—according to a new Penn Medicine study. The findings, published today in JAMA Ophthalmology, suggest that more attention should be paid to ensuring visit adherence for this patient population. The authors say the results of the study also have financial implications for clinicians, due to impending changes in Medicare reimbursement. These changes will reportedly shift financial risks to the physician, while also accounting for patient outcomes.

High volumes of mental health-related tweets associated with crisis referrals

Referrals to two mental healthcare providers in London for patients requiring urgent help were significantly greater on days with a higher than average number of tweets discussing topics around mental health, according to a study published in Scientific Reports. The study used data collected between January 2010 and December 2014 at South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust (SLAM) and Camden and Islington NHS Foundation Trust (C&I).

Stopping onchocerciasis on two sides of a border

Pathogens don't pay attention to international borders, with transmission and endemic areas often stretching between countries. In the new work, Moses Katabarwa of the Carter Center, USA, and colleagues report in PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases the first known and successful coordinated cross-border mass drug administration (MDA) effort with ivermectin to stop onchocerciasis.

'Big problems' in China response to virus: HRW

Human Rights Watch on Thursday accused China of suppressing criticism of its response to the deadly novel coronavirus and said it had made the outbreak worse.

Characterizing RNA alterations in cancer

Researchers at EMBL-EBI were among the leaders of a large international consortium that carried out a joint analysis of data from over 1000 donors of more than 25 cancer types, studying data on their whole genomes along with tumor transcriptome data, which indicates the genes that are active within a tumor. These data represent the largest comparative resource to date of cancer-specific RNA alterations matched with whole-genome sequencing data.

'Chromosome shattering': Understanding chromothripsis in human cancer

Researchers at Harvard Medical School and EMBL-EBI have carried out the largest analysis across cancer types of the newly discovered mutational phenomenon chromothripsis. This study is the largest of its kind to date, containing whole-genome sequencing (WGS) data from over 2600 tumors spanning 38 different types of cancer.

Study sheds light on why people self-injure

A study by a team of psychologists has revealed that people who self-injure often feel positively—as well as negatively—about their behavior.

New ingredient in cocaine vaccine shows promise in mouse study

A new ingredient added to a current cocaine vaccine appears to enhance its effectiveness in blocking the drug's "high" when tested in mice, Duke Health researchers report.

Study finds blood test accurately tracks HPV-linked head and neck cancer

An experimental blood test accurately detected HPV-linked head and neck cancer recurrence and confirmed when patients remained cancer-free, according to findings from a study led by University of North Carolina Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center researchers.

Do some children really hear 30 million more words than others?

The concept that children from lower socioeconomic backgrounds start out at a learning disadvantage because they hear fewer words than children from higher socioeconomic backgrounds—a so-called 30 million-word gap—should be explored with more detail, says a Purdue University social scientist and researcher.

Melanoma risk in young Australians goes beyond the burn

Australians with melanoma detected before they turn 40 are more likely to have the cancer on non-sun damaged parts of the body compared to people diagnosed when older.

How long can China's mass quarantine stave off a coronavirus pandemic?

The number of cases of novel coronavirus is growing rapidly in China, but the outbreak has largely been contained within the country, as a result of sweeping measures by the Chinese government.

Using 'the language of cells' to find new treatments for asthma, allergies

Yale researchers have discovered that microRNAs, small ribonucleic acids that drive communication between cells, present a new potential pathway for treating allergies and asthma. The study was published in the latest issue of the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology.

Better prescribing for bad backs

Low back pain is a major cause of disability among adults and a top reason patients are prescribed opioids. However, a recent study in the Journal of the American Board of Family Medicine finds that patients with new low back pain are receiving opioids less frequently, though prescribing rates remain uneven across the country. Given opioids' limited effectiveness for low back pain and risk of harm to patients, these results are heartening.

Want a more elastic brain? Try mixing up your workout

Looking for an exercise regime that gives both the heart and brain the best workout? A new study from the University of South Australia may have the answer.

Unveiling how lymph nodes regulate immune response

Pathogens such as severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS), Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS), and recently the novel coronavirus in Wuhan, China (2019-nCoV) have been a global threat. Lymph nodes (LNs) fight against infectious diseases by providing a shelter for immune cells to grow and launch an attack against pathogens. However, LNs' particular inner workings are poorly understood.

A new approach to calm that angry nose

Eosinophilic chronic rhinosinusitis (ECRS) is a type of airway disease involving nasal inflammation. Many studies have attempted to understand the molecular-based pathogenesis of recurrent ECRS; none have provided a clear explanation, until now.

Menopause timing hard to determine in every third woman

Is it possible to investigate menopausal age, or not? In more than one in three women aged 50, the body provides no clear answer about the menopause, a University of Gothenburg study shows. Increased use of hormonal intrauterine devices and contraceptive pills are the cause.

Vaccinating children—why peace of mind should not be forgotten when it comes to funding

Vaccinating children against serious diseases is a complicated process. Even after all the scientific discoveries and developments, there are important decisions to be made by parents and politicians.

Missing medication doses can bring serious consequences

According to the Partnership to Fight Chronic Disease, 7.7 million Pennsylvanians live with at least one chronic health condition, such as diabetes, asthma, heart failure, hypertension or high cholesterol. Yet an alarming number of people don't take the medications prescribed by their health care provider to manage those conditions.

'Watch-and-wait' strategy could safely replace surgery in more than 20% of rectal cancers

A team of doctors and scientists from the Champalimaud Clinical Centre in Lisbon, Portugal, and the Netherlands Cancer Institute in Amsterdam, has shown that patients with "low" rectal cancer (that is, very close to the anus) who show no sign of tumors after a course of radio- and chemotherapy can safely choose to postpone invasive and complication-prone surgical procedures. These results have been published in the journal Annals of Surgery.

Global fears rise as more China virus cases found on cruise ship

China's coronavirus crisis deepened on Thursday with the death toll soaring to 563, as thousands of people trapped on quarantined cruise ships added to global panic about the epidemic.

Discovery of genes involved in infertility mechanism

Most cells in the tissues of organisms proliferate through somatic cell division (mitosis). This is a continuous cycle by which a single cell doubles its genetic information (chromosomes) and divides equally to create two copies of the original cell. In contrast, germ cells (eggs and sperm) are produced through a special type of cell division called meiosis, which takes place in the gonads. This process begins like normal mitosis, but switches after some time to create four genetically dissimilar germ cells that have half the original cell's genetic material. The mechanism that causes this switch has been a longstanding research problem, and controlling it is an important, yet challenging issue in reproductive medicine.

Hard times are coming: Brain tissue stiffness is crucial for neurogenesis

In mammalian adult brains, neural stem cells are only present in few specific regions, so-called niches. Only these niches are capable of generating new neurons. For the first time, researchers have defined the proteome of these niches, the entire set of expressed proteins, and compared it to other regions of the brain. The findings help to identify key regulators for neurogenesis, an important step towards activating neurogenesis after brain injuries.

Nearly half of all childhood asthma cases in Barcelona are attributable to air pollution

As many as 1,230 cases of childhood asthma in Barcelona—48% of the total—could be attributable to air pollution each year. This is the main conclusion of a new study led by the Barcelona Institute for Global Health (ISGlobal). The study also finds that childhood asthma related to air pollution may have a larger effect on the city's less socially deprived children.

Growing new blood vessels could provide new treatment for recovering movement

Many health conditions—ranging from disease of particular organs such as heart and lungs, widespread metabolic issues such as diabetes, or following trauma such as spinal cord injury—cause difficulties with movement. This can severely affect quality of life and new research published today in the Journal of Physiology highlights the link between loss of the smallest blood vessels in muscle and difficulties moving and exercising. Understanding this link opens up the possibility of aiding recovery by growing more blood vessels in your muscles.

5 things we learned about changing behaviors for antibiotic stewardship

What is needed to better harness the huge potential of behavior change science for antibiotic stewardship? This is the question we set out to answer last year.

Racial, ethnic, sex, insurance disparities ID'd in acne care

Racial/ethnic, sex, and insurance-based disparities are seen in acne care, according to a study published online Feb. 5 in JAMA Dermatology.

Prenatal vitamin D does not reduce asthma, wheeze at age 6

Among children at risk for asthma, prenatal vitamin D supplementation does not affect the incidence of asthma or recurrent wheeze at age 6, according to a study published in the Feb. 6 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

Do young adults really 'age out' of heavy drinking?

During the late teens and early 20s, young people may booze it up a lot, but they eventually dial it back, right?

End-of life-care needs will nearly double over the next 30 years, highlighting urgent need for funding

New research at Trinity College Dublin, published today (Thursday, February 6th, 2020), shows that the number of people dying in Ireland with palliative care needs will increase 84% to 2046.

Simple tool assesses physical and social frailty, predicts outcomes for vulnerable patients

A simple tool developed more than 20 years ago at the University of Alberta is proving useful around the world to help a wider range of vulnerable patients than first imagined by its creator.

Why weight training may be the best exercise for everyone

While research shows little or no link between exercise and any meaningful long-term weight loss, that doesn't mean exercising, particularly resistance training, doesn't provide a long list of health benefits, both physical and mental.

What the discovery of a new HIV strain means for the pandemic

The discovery of a rare new strain of HIV for the first time in nearly 20 years recently made headlines around the world.

Researchers recreating live-animal markets in the lab can see how pathogens jump species

Nobody yet knows for sure the definitive origins of the newly recognized coronavirus now known as 2019-nCoV that's currently spreading across the globe as a human respiratory pathogen. Early reports indicate that the source of the virus was the Huanan seafood market in Wuhan, China, where an eclectic mix of animals including rodents, rabbits, bats and other wild animals and seafood are all on display for consumption and in contact with human shoppers.

Novel coronavirus: Infectious virus detected in the nose and throat of patients with mild symptoms

Universitätsmedizin Berlin, the Bundeswehr Institute of Microbiology and Munich Clinic Schwabing has revealed that infectious virus can be isolated from nose and throat swabs even where these have been obtained from patients with mild symptoms. The research groups have therefore come to the conclusion that even persons with mild symptoms are capable of transmitting the virus.

Computer simulation for understanding brain cancer growth

The growth of brain cancers can be better understood with the help of a new computer platform developed by international scientists coordinated by Newcastle University.

Earlier detection of women's vascular health issues can affect heart disease risk

Men and women differ in the way their vascular systems age and the rate at which atherosclerosis—the hardening of artery walls or buildup of arterial blockage—progresses over time. These sex- and age-related differences have a direct bearing on a woman's risk factors for cardiovascular disease.

Study takes a stand against prolonged sitting

In many workplaces, standing desks and walking meetings are addressing the health dangers of sitting too long each day, but for universities, the natural question is how to make such adjustments in classrooms.

Steroids could do more harm than good in treating coronavirus

Steroids should be avoided in the treatment of the current novel coronavirus, experts have advised.

Oh my aching back: Do yoga, tai chi or qigong help?

It's a pain. About 80 percent of adults in the United States will experience lower back pain at some point. Treating back pain typically involves medication, including opioids, surgery, therapy and self-care options. Efforts to reduce opioid use and increase physically based therapies to reduce pain and increase physical function and safety are crucial.

New virus cases in UK, Germany bring Europe's total to 30

Britain and Germany announced more cases of the Wuhan virus on Thursday, bringing the total number of confirmed virus cases in Europe to 30.

When kids face discrimination, their mothers' health may suffer

A new study is the first to suggest that children's exposure to discrimination can harm their mothers' health.

Recognise and control new variants of the deadly Ebola virus more quickly

The situation is extraordinary: there have only ever been four declarations of public health emergencies of international concern in the past and now there are two at the same time. Whilst the risks associated with the novel coronavirus are still unclear, people in the Democratic Republic of the Congo are still battling with an outbreak of the deadly Ebola virus which has been ongoing since 2018 and has already claimed over 2000 lives. One issue is the precise characterisation of the pathogen because the ebolaviruses, like lots of viruses, appear in various genetic forms. Only the analysis of its genetic material provides the information necessary to develop specific tests for diagnosis and decide on efficient measures for controlling the outbreak. A German Center for Infection Research (DZIF) team at Charité - Universitätsmedizin Berlin has now developed a test which accelerates the process of identifying the genetic makeup of the virus.

How and where receptors touch at the surface of a cell may influence the strength of neuronal connections

Like buoys bobbing on the ocean, many receptors float on the surface of a cell's membrane with a part sticking above the water and another underwater, inside the cell's cytoplasm. But for cells to function, these receptors must be docked at specific regions of the cell. Most research has focused on the 'underwater' portions. That's where the cell's molecular machines swarm and interact with a receptor's underwater tails, with those interactions then fueling signals that dive deep into the nucleus, changing the cell's course.

Bridging the gap between AI and the clinic

The power of artificial intelligence (AI) in medicine lies in its ability to find important statistical patterns in large datasets. A recently published study is an important proof of concept for how AI can help doctors and brain tumour patients make better treatment decisions.

Botanical drug is shown to help patients with head and neck cancers

In a UCLA-led phase I clinical trial, a new plant-based drug called APG-157 showed signs of helping patients fight oral and oropharyngeal cancers. These cancers are located in the head and the neck.

Researchers find synchronization of memory cells critical for learning and forming memories

The phrase "Pavlov's dogs" has long evoked images of bells, food and salivating dogs. Even though this tried-and-true model of repetitive patterns mimics a variety of learning processes, what happens on a cellular level in the brain isn't clear. Researchers at the University of New Hampshire took a closer look at the hippocampus, the part of the brain critical for long-term memory formation, and found that the neurons involved in so-called Pavlovian learning shift their behavior during the process and become more synchronized when a memory is being formed—a finding that helps better understand memory mechanisms and provides clues for the development of future therapies for memory-related diseases like dementia, autism and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

FDA crackdown on vaping flavors has blind spot: disposables

The U.S. government on Thursday began enforcing restrictions on flavored electronic cigarettes aimed at curbing underage vaping. But some teenagers may be one step ahead of the rules.

Experts scramble, but new virus vaccine may not come in time

The flu-like virus that exploded from China has researchers worldwide once again scrambling to find a vaccine against a surprise health threat, with no guarantee one will arrive in time.

Repeated measures of 9/11-related PTSD tied to mortality

(HealthDay)—Based on repeated measures, 9/11-related probable posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is associated with an increased mortality risk, according to a study published online Feb. 5 in JAMA Network Open.

Reference pricing linked to lower prices paid by employers

(HealthDay)—Reference prices are associated with lower prices paid by employers and lower cost sharing by employees, according to a study published online Feb. 5 in JAMA Network Open.

Expert heart advice for rare genetic muscle disorder

A rare, inherited muscle disorder that occurs in about 1 in 8,000 people, myotonic dystrophy also can affect the heart and other organs. A new set of expert recommendations offers guidance for managing the progressive condition.

Half of lupus rashes harbor high levels of bacteria responsible for infections

A new study finds that one side effect of lupus could also make patients with the autoimmune condition more vulnerable to a skin infection, or spreading the infection to others.

Chemical found in drinking water linked to tooth decay in children

Children with higher concentrations of a certain chemical in their blood are more likely to get cavities, according to a new study by West Virginia University School of Dentistry researchers.

What is your risk from smoking? Your network knows!

How many people will die from tobacco use in developed countries in 2030?

Chinese doctor who sounded the alarm about the virus dies

A Chinese doctor who got in trouble with authorities in the communist country for sounding an early warning about the coronavirus outbreak died after coming down with the illness Friday, a hospital reported.

Natural compound in vegetables helps fight fatty liver disease

A new study led by Texas A&M AgriLife Research scientists shows how a natural compound found in many well-known and widely consumed vegetables can also be used to fight fatty liver disease.

Study catalogues cancer 'fingerprints' in decade-long global effort to map cancer genomes

Cancer is the leading cause of death in Singapore and the second leading cause of death around the world, implicated in about one in six deaths globally. An international consortium of scientists has now identified 81 mutational 'signatures' that could help reveal the origins and development of various types of cancer, and inform new strategies to prevent, diagnose and treat the disease.

Saudi Arabia bars citizens, residents from travel to China

Saudi Arabia on Thursday barred its citizens and residents of the kingdom from traveling to China amid the new virus outbreak.

Airlines extend China flight suspensions

International airlines Air France-KLM, Virgin and Iberia said Thursday they would extend their initial suspension of flights to China where authorities are struggling to contain a coronavirus outbreak.

New robot will provide surgical assistance in uterine operations

A team of researchers from the Polytechnic University of Valencia (UPV), belonging to the Institute of Automation and Industrial Informatics (AI2), has developed a gynecological surgical assistance robot for uterine operations.

Fighting coronavirus fear with empathy: Lessons learned from how Africans got blamed for Ebola

With coronavirus cases exploding in China, the U.S. is once again responding to a global epidemic. Five years ago, when the Ebola virus infected more than 28,000 people in 10 countries, many people were surprised to learn that four of these cases were diagnosed on U.S. soil.

Animal abuse as a pretext for interpersonal violence

The federal government recently passed a bill making it a felony to torture, abuse and/or neglect animals. Violating the law carries up to a seven-year prison sentence.

All women should be educated after childbirth about high blood pressure

After childbirth, it is not uncommon for women to experience high blood pressure. If not treated, it can have serious consequences, including stroke and, in some cases, death. It is unclear what causes high blood pressure after childbirth, or who may develop it.

Officials: 70 China evacuees to be quarantined in Nebraska

Officials said Thursday that 70 Americans being evacuated from China over a viral outbreak will be flown into Omaha and quarantined at a nearby Nebraska National Guard training base.

What interventional radiologists need to know about frostbite and amputation

An ahead-of-print article in the April issue of the American Journal of Roentgenology (AJR) reviewing various techniques and clinical management paradigms to treat severe frostbite injuries—relevant for interventional radiologists, especially—showed promising results using both intraarterial (IA) and IV tPA (tissue plasminogen activator) to reduce amputation.

How runaway healthcare costs are a threat to older adults and what to do about it

Empowering Medicare to directly negotiate drug prices, accelerating the adoption of value-based care, using philanthropy as a catalyst for reform and expanding senior-specific models of care are among recommendations for reducing healthcare costs published in a new special report and supplement to the Winter 2019-20 edition of Generations, the journal of the American Society of Aging (ASA).

Global panic deepens over China virus

China's coronavirus crisis worsened Thursday as the death toll soared to 563 and the plight of thousands trapped on quarantined cruise ships deepened global panic over the epidemic.

Biology news

Collaboration lets researchers 'read' proteins for new properties

Clumps of proteins inside cells are a common thread in many neurodegenerative diseases, including amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) or Lou Gehrig's disease. These clumps, or solid aggregates of proteins, appear to be the result of an abnormality in the process known as liquid-liquid phase separation (LLPS), in which individual proteins come together to form a liquid-like droplet.

Key molecular machine in cells pictured in detail for the first time

Scientists from the UNC School of Medicine, Columbia University, and Rockefeller University have revealed the inner workings of one of the most fundamental and important molecular machines in cells.

Why bumble bees are going extinct in time of 'climate chaos'

When you were young, were you the type of child who would scour open fields looking for bumble bees? Today, it is much harder for kids to spot them, since bumble bees are drastically declining in North America and in Europe.

Tropical trees are living time capsules of human history

In a new article published in Trends in Plant Science, an international team of scientists presents the combined use of dendrochronology, radiocarbon dating and isotopic and genetic analysis as a means of investigating the effects of human activities on forest disturbances and the growth dynamics of tropical tree species. The study presents the potential applicability of these methods for investigating prehistoric, historical and industrial periods in tropical forests around the world and suggests that they have the potential to detect time-transgressive anthropogenic threats, insights that can inform and guide conservation priorities in these rapidly disappearing environments.

Sheep know the grass isn't always greener when it comes to their health

Sheep appear to forage and avoid parasites differently depending on how healthy they are, according to new University of Bristol research published in Proceedings of the Royal Society B. The study, which used remote GPS sensing data to monitor the foraging patterns of sheep, revealed less healthy animals chose to avoid high-quality vegetation due to a higher prevalence of ticks.

A method to engineer immune cells so they grow even in hostile tumors

Tumors can create a hostile environment for cancer-fighting immune cells. In a new study, University of North Carolina Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center researchers have developed a method for engineering immune cells to improve their survival and proliferation, even within a hostile tumor.

A protein lulls algae to 'sleep,' and what that means for making green fuels

Algae have the potential to become a sustainable source of high value biofuels and oils. A big hurdle that holds us back from mass producing algae feedstocks is that they make more oil when stressed out, like during starvation.

Structure of human thyroglobulin identified

A team of researchers from the U.K., Slovenia and Germany has determined the structure of human thyroglobulin using cryo-electron microscopy. In their paper published in the journal Nature, the group describes their study of the protein and its structure. Nancy Carrasco with Vanderbilt University has published a News & Views piece outlining the work by the team in the same journal issue.

Analysis of human genomes in the cloud

Most bioinformatics software used for genomic analysis is experimental in nature and has a relatively high failure rate. In addition, cloud infrastructure itself, when run at scale, is prone to system crashes. These setbacks mean that big biomedical data analysis can take a long time and incur huge costs. To solve these problems, Sergei Yakneen, Jan Korbel, and colleagues at EMBL developed a system that identifies and fixes crashes efficiently.

How plants are built to be strong and responsive

Organised cellulose fibres allow plants to grow, support themselves and store fixed carbon from the atmosphere. Wood and dietary fibre is largely made of cellulose, and coal is derived from cellulose synthesised millions of years ago.

Research could be step toward lab-grown eggs and sperm to treat infertility

A new study on how and when the precursors to eggs and sperm are formed during development could help pave the way for generating egg and sperm cells in the lab to treat infertility.

Researchers study elephants' unique interactions with their dead

Stories of unique and sentient interactions between elephants and their dead are a familiar part of the species' lore, but a comprehensive study of these interactions has been lacking—until now. A recent review of documented field observations of elephants at carcasses reveals patterns of elephants' behavior toward their dead, regardless of the strength of former relationships with the deceased individual.

Conflict between ranchers and wildlife intensifies as climate change worsens in Chile

Scientists from the University of La Serena, Newcastle University, UK, and the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile surveyed ranchers to find out what they thought were the drivers of conflict between people and guanacos (a wild camelid species closely related to the Llama).

An invasive flatworm from Argentina, Obama nungara, found across France and Europe

One of the consequences of globalization is the inadvertent human-mediated spread of invasive species. The presence of a new invader, named Obama nungara, is reported in France by an international team led by Jean-Lou Justine of ISYEB (Muséum National d'Histoire Naturelle, Paris, France). This is the first study of this invasion, reported in an article published in the open-access journal PeerJ.

Whales coordinate deep dives to evade predators

Groups of beaked whales reduce predation risk through extreme diving synchronization, according to a study in Scientific Reports. This behaviour has not been observed in other deep diving whales and the underlying reasons have remained unclear.

How farmers' opinions determine success of plant-disease control strategies

To successfully combat a crop-threatening disease, it may be more important to educate growers about the effectiveness of control strategies than to emphasize the risk posed by the disease, according to new research by Alice Milne of Rothamsted Research in Harpenden, U.K., and colleagues. These findings appear in PLOS Computational Biology.

Study reveals evolutionary clues to honeybees' social complexity

The complex social life of honeybees—with their queens and workers cooperating to produce honey—is deeply entrenched in the public's imagination. But the majority of the world's more than 20,000 bee species are solitary: One female mates, gathers provisions, lays eggs and walls them up with food in a secure spot.

Sugar ants' preference for pee may reduce greenhouse gas emissions

An unlikely penchant for pee is putting a common sugar ant on the map, as new research from the University of South Australia shows their taste for urine could play a role in reducing greenhouse gases.

8 things we do that really confuse our dogs

Dog behaviour is extraordinarily flexible—this is why we can keep them in our homes and take them to cafes with us at the weekend.

Bogong Bikkies: Nutritionally suitable baked biscuits help mountain pygmy-possums after bushfires

Australia's recent bushfires have razed over ten million hectares, and killed at least a billion animals. It's likely countless more will die in the aftermath, as many species face starvation as the landscape slowly regenerates.

Switzerland flags 'atypical' mad cow case

Switzerland on Thursday reported an "atypical" case of mad cow disease but said there was no danger to human health.

The invasive Argentine ant has seasonal viruses

Argentine ants are one of the most successful invasive species in the world. Scientist from University of Oulu and University of Girona, Spain, have previously identified viruses from the invasive Argentine ants of the Mediterranean region and found several new virus species. Now the researchers studied the ant's virus ecology, because loss of pathogen may help an invasive species succeed in a new environment.

Proposed hydropower dams pose threat to Gabon's fishes

Proposed hydropower dams in Gabon pose a substantial threat to the African nation's most culturally and economically important fishes, according to a new study.

Rejuvenate Bio launches to help dogs live longer, healthier lives

The Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering at Harvard University announced today that Rejuvenate Bio has secured an exclusive worldwide license from the Harvard Office of Technology Development to commercialize a gene therapy technology developed at the Wyss Institute and Harvard Medical School (HMS) to prevent and treat several age-related diseases in dogs, extending their overall healthspan. The announcement follows the publication in PNAS of a study led by Harvard researchers detailing the technology's efficacy in mitigating obesity, type II diabetes, heart failure, and renal failure in mice.

The unchanging viscosity of cells

The only thing that appears to be unchanging in living cells is that they are constantly changing. However, scientists from the IPC PAS have managed to show that there is a certain parameter that does not change. It's their viscosity. This research, although basic, may contribute to the development of completely new diagnostic and therapeutic methods.

Group seeks endangered species listing for Alaska lake seals

The only known freshwater harbor seals in the U.S. should be listed as as threatened or endangered, an environmental group said Thursday in its second petition for the animals.

Botswana to start auctions of elephant hunting licences

Botswana on Friday will hold its first major auction for trophy elephant hunting quotas since controversially scrapping a hunting ban last year, a wildlife official said.

France keeps eyes peeled for ruinous tomato virus

France's agriculture ministry said Thursday that it was increasing surveillance of fields to stave off a ruinous virus affecting tomatoes that has already been found in neighbouring countries.

Researchers refute fifty-year old doctrine on cell membrane regulation

The cell membrane can be regarded as the boundary between life and non-life. The ability of the membrane to adapt to changes in the environment is essential for all forms of life. Up until now, the accepted view was that cells can respond to changes in temperature by sensing the fluidity of their cell membranes. However, a research project has now shown that the underlying hypothesis, which was a widely accepted doctrine, is not correct.

This email is a free service of Science X Network
You received this email because you subscribed to our list.
If you do not wish to receive such emails in the future, please unsubscribe here.
You are subscribed as You may manage your subscription options from your Science X profile


No comments: