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Last feed update: Friday October 23rd, 2020 05:07:16 AM

Tackling alarming decline in nature requires 'safety net' of multiple, ambitious goals

Thursday October 22nd, 2020 07:17:45 PM
A 'safety net' made up of multiple ambitious and interlinked goals is needed to tackle nature's alarming decline, according to an international team of researchers analyzing the new goals for biodiversity being drafted by the UN's Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD).

Future VR could employ new ultrahigh-res display

Thursday October 22nd, 2020 07:17:43 PM
Repurposed solar panel research could be the foundation for a new ultrahigh-resolution microdisplay. The OLED display would feature brighter images with purer colors and more than 10,000 pixels per inch.

Ancient Maya built sophisticated water filters

Thursday October 22nd, 2020 07:17:41 PM
Ancient Maya in the once-bustling city of Tikal built sophisticated water filters using natural materials they imported from miles away, according to new research. A multidisciplinary team of anthropologists, geographers and biologists identified quartz and zeolite, a crystalline compound consisting of silicon and aluminum, that created a natural molecular sieve. Both minerals are used in modern water filtration.

Galactic archaeology

Thursday October 22nd, 2020 07:17:39 PM
Computational astrophysics study modeled for the first time faint supernovae of metal-free first stars, yielding carbon-enhanced abundance patterns for star formation. Study investigated formation of first stars and the origin of elements heavier than hydrogen, helium, lithium.

Collaboration sparks new model for ceramic conductivity

Thursday October 22nd, 2020 07:17:35 PM
As insulators, metal oxides - also known as ceramics - may not seem like obvious candidates for electrical conductivity. While electrons zip back and forth in regular metals, their movement in ceramic materials is sluggish and difficult to detect.

Do the twist: Making two-dimensional quantum materials using curved surfaces

Thursday October 22nd, 2020 06:45:33 PM
Scientists have discovered a way to control the growth of twisting, microscopic spirals of materials just one atom thick. The continuously twisting stacks of two-dimensional materials built by a team create new properties that scientists can exploit to study quantum physics on the nanoscale.

A promising discovery could lead to better treatment for Hepatitis C

Thursday October 22nd, 2020 06:45:32 PM
Virologists have identified a critical role played by a cellular protein in the progression of Hepatitis C virus infection, paving the way for more effective treatment. No vaccine currently exists for Hepatitis C virus infection, which affects more than 130 million people worldwide and nearly 250,000 Canadians. Antivirals exist but are expensive and not readily available in developing countries, where the disease is most prevalent.

AI detects hidden earthquakes

Thursday October 22nd, 2020 06:39:39 PM
Tiny movements in Earth's outermost layer may provide a Rosetta Stone for deciphering the physics and warning signs of big quakes. New algorithms that work a little like human vision are now detecting these long-hidden microquakes in the growing mountain of seismic data.

How'd we get so picky about friendship late in life? Ask the chimps

Thursday October 22nd, 2020 06:39:34 PM
When humans age, they tend to favor small circles of meaningful, already established friendships rather than seek new ones. People are also more likely to lean toward positive relationships rather than ones that bring tension or conflict. These behaviors were thought to be unique to humans but it turns out chimpanzees, one of our closest living relatives, have these traits, too. The study shows what's believed to be the first evidence of nonhuman animals actively selecting who they socialize with during aging.

Upcycling polyethylene plastic waste into valuable molecules

Thursday October 22nd, 2020 06:39:28 PM
Researchers develop a one-pot, low temperature catalytic method to turn polyethylene polymers into alkylaromatic molecules.

Stigma impacts psychological, physical health of multiracial people

Thursday October 22nd, 2020 05:47:25 PM
Policy changes can help to fight stigmas of multiracial Americans, one of the fasting growing minority groups in the United States according to a new study.

Humans are born with brains 'prewired' to see words

Thursday October 22nd, 2020 04:55:25 PM
Humans are born with a part of the brain that is prewired to be receptive to seeing words and letters, setting the stage at birth for people to learn how to read, a new study suggests. Analyzing brain scans of newborns, researchers found that this part of the brain -- called the 'visual word form area' (VWFA) -- is connected to the language network of the brain.

Individuals may legitimize hacking when angry with system or authority

Thursday October 22nd, 2020 04:55:22 PM
New research has found that when individuals feel that a system or authority is unresponsive to their demands, they are more likely to legitimize hacker activity at an organization's expense.

Increasing sleep time after trauma could ease ill effects

Thursday October 22nd, 2020 04:55:13 PM
Increasing the amount of time spent asleep immediately after a traumatic experience may ease any negative consequences, suggests a new study conducted by researchers. The study helps build a case for use of sleep therapeutics following trauma exposure. The finding holds promise for populations that are routinely exposed to trauma, such as military personnel and first responders, and may also benefit victims of accidents, natural disaster, violence, and abuse.

Turning streetwear into solar power plants

Thursday October 22nd, 2020 04:31:23 PM
Researchers have developed a material that works like a luminescent solar concentrator and can even be applied to textiles. This opens up numerous possibilities for producing energy directly where it is needed, i.e. in the use of everyday electronics.

New tool can diagnose strokes with a smartphone

Thursday October 22nd, 2020 04:31:20 PM
A new tool could diagnose a stroke based on abnormalities in a patient's speech ability and facial muscular movements, and with the accuracy of an emergency room physician -- all within minutes from an interaction with a smartphone.

Researchers identify how night-shift work causes internal clock confusion

Thursday October 22nd, 2020 04:31:16 PM
Night-shift workers face an increased risk of obesity and diabetes, but the underlying reason for that has been a mystery. Now, researchers have found a potential cause for metabolic changes during night-shift work that creates confusion between cells in the body and the central clock in the brain.

Are bushmeat hunters aware of zoonotic disease? Yes, but that's not the issue

Thursday October 22nd, 2020 04:31:13 PM
A recent article outlines how researchers with the measured the attitudes, practices and zoonoses awareness among community members associated with the bushmeat trade in northern Uganda.

Toward a new staging system for prostate cancer, and why it matters

Thursday October 22nd, 2020 04:31:11 PM
The development and validation of a staging system for non-metastatic prostate cancer could help doctors and patients assess treatment options, as well as improve clinical trials.

Simplified method to modify disease signaling with light

Thursday October 22nd, 2020 03:26:26 PM
Cellular optogenetics is a technique that allows researchers to use light to precisely control cell signaling and function in space and time enabling the investigation of mechanisms involved in disease processes. A research team has developed a novel way to make cellular optogenetic tools much easier to monitor and apply, and showed how they can be used to investigate the cellular side effects of medicines used to treat cancer.

Reviewing multiferroics for future, low-energy data storage

Thursday October 22nd, 2020 03:26:22 PM
Big data and exponential demands for computations are driving an unsustainable rise in global ICT energy use. A new study reviews the use of the 'multiferroic' material bismuth-ferrite, which allows for low-energy switching in data storage devices and could be applied in a future generation of ultra-low-energy electronics.

Cicada-inspired waterproof surfaces closer to reality

Thursday October 22nd, 2020 03:26:20 PM
A multidisciplinary group that studies the physical and chemical properties of insect wings has demonstrated the ability to reproduce the nanostructures that help cicada wings repel water and prevent bacteria from establishing on the surface. The new technique - which uses commercial nail polish - is economical and straightforward, and the researchers said it will help fabricate future high-tech waterproof materials.

Finally, a way to see molecules 'wobble'

Thursday October 22nd, 2020 03:26:18 PM
Researchers have found a way to visualize those molecules in even greater detail, showing their position and orientation in 3D, and even how they wobble and oscillate. This could shed invaluable insights into the biological processes involved, for example, when a cell and the proteins that regulate its functions react to a COVID-19 virus.

These two bird-sized dinosaurs evolved the ability to glide, but weren't great at it

Thursday October 22nd, 2020 03:26:13 PM
Despite having bat-like wings, two small dinosaurs, Yi and Ambopteryx, struggled to fly, only managing to glide clumsily between the trees where they lived, researchers report. Unable to compete with other tree-dwelling dinosaurs and early birds, they went extinct after just a few million years. The findings support that dinosaurs evolved flight in several different ways before modern birds evolved.

A wearable sensor to help ALS patients communicate

Thursday October 22nd, 2020 03:26:09 PM
Researchers have designed a skin-like device that can be attached to the face and measure small movements such as a twitch or a smile. With this approach, patients with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) could communicate a variety of sentiments with small movements that are measured and interpreted by the device.

Antiretroviral therapy can't completely stop accelerated cell aging seen in HIV

Thursday October 22nd, 2020 03:26:08 PM
Untreated HIV infection is linked with epigenetic changes that suggest rapid aging. A new study shows that antiretroviral therapy given over two years was unable to completely restore age-appropriate epigenetic patterns, leaving patients more susceptible to aging-related illnesses.

Simple actions can help people survive landslides

Thursday October 22nd, 2020 03:26:04 PM
Simple actions can dramatically improve a person's chances of surviving a landslide, according to records from 38 landslides in the US and around the world. People who survived landslides tended to show key behaviors such as being aware of the risk, moving to higher ground, and making noise if buried.

Researchers solve 'protein paradox' and suggest way to exploit cancer weakness

Thursday October 22nd, 2020 03:26:01 PM
Researchers have discovered how thus far a mysterious function of the so-called MCM proteins protect the human cells against DNA instability, which can cause devastating diseases including cancer. In addition to their known role as molecular motors of genome duplication, MCM proteins control the speed of this process. How cells manage to constrain the speed of DNA replication has puzzled researchers for decades and has even been called a 'MCM paradox'.

Social life as a driving factor of birds' generosity

Thursday October 22nd, 2020 03:25:57 PM
Taking a look at generosity within the crow family reveals parallels with human evolution. Working together to raise offspring and increased tolerance towards group members contribute to the emergence of generous behavior among ravens, crows, magpies and company. Biologists found that the social life of corvids is a crucial factor for whether the birds act generously or not.

Multiple sclerosis as the flip side of immune fitness

Thursday October 22nd, 2020 03:25:54 PM
About half of the people with multiple sclerosis have the HLA-DR15 gene variant. A study has now shown how this genetic predisposition contributes to the development of the autoimmune disease multiple sclerosis in combination with environmental factors. The decisive factor is the shaping of a repertoire of immune cells which - although they are effective in fighting off pathogens such as Epstein-Barr virus - also attack brain tissue.

New approach to fighting cancer could reduce costs and side effects

Thursday October 22nd, 2020 01:39:56 PM
Researchers have developed a novel approach based on microfluidic technology to 'purify' the immune cells of patients in the fight against cancer.

For the first time: Realistic simulation of plasma edge instabilities in tokamaks

Thursday October 22nd, 2020 01:39:54 PM
Among the loads to which the plasma vessel in a fusion device may be exposed, so-called edge localized modes are particularly undesirable. By computer simulations the origin and the course of this plasma-edge instability could now be explained for the first time in detail.

Optical wiring for large quantum computers

Thursday October 22nd, 2020 01:39:50 PM
Researchers have demonstrated a new technique for carrying out sensitive quantum operations on atoms. In this technique, the control laser light is delivered directly inside a chip. This should make it possible to build large-scale quantum computers based on trapped atoms.

Preventing lead poisoning at the source

Thursday October 22nd, 2020 01:39:44 PM
Using a variety of public records, researchers examined every rental property in Cleveland from 2016-18 on factors related to the likelihood that the property could have lead-safety problems.

Bacterial metabolism of dietary soy may lower risk factor for dementia

Thursday October 22nd, 2020 12:33:11 PM
A metabolite produced following consumption of dietary soy may decrease a key risk factor for dementia - with the help of the right bacteria, according to a new discovery.

Grafting with epigenetically-modified rootstock yields surprise

Thursday October 22nd, 2020 12:33:03 PM
Novel grafted plants -- consisting of rootstock epigenetically modified to 'believe' it has been under stress -- joined to an unmodified scion, or above-ground shoot, give rise to progeny that are more vigorous, productive and resilient than the parental plants.

Wildfires can cause dangerous debris flows

Thursday October 22nd, 2020 12:33:01 PM
Wildfires don't stop being dangerous after the flames go out. Even one modest rainfall after a fire can cause a deadly landslide, according to new research.

Cognitive elements of language have existed for 40 million years

Wednesday October 21st, 2020 10:07:40 PM
Humans are not the only beings that can identify rules in complex language-like constructions -- monkeys and great apes can do so, too, a new study has shown. Researcher used a series of experiments based on an 'artificial grammar' to conclude that this ability can be traced back to our ancient primate ancestors.

ALMA shows volcanic impact on Io's atmosphere

Wednesday October 21st, 2020 08:39:38 PM
New radio images from ALMA show for the first time the direct effect of volcanic activity on the atmosphere of Jupiter's moon Io.

Genome sequencing shows climate barrier to spread of Africanized bees

Wednesday October 21st, 2020 08:39:36 PM
Since the 1950s, 'Africanized' honeybees have spread north and south across the Americas until apparently coming to a halt in California and northern Argentina. Now genome sequencing of hundreds of bees from the northern and southern limits shows a gradual decline in African ancestry across hundreds of miles, rather than an abrupt shift.

Highly effective tumor detection strategy for common childhood brain tumors

Wednesday October 21st, 2020 08:39:32 PM
A team of scientists have developed a way to more accurately both detect and monitor a common type of pediatric brain cancer, setting the stage for giving clinicians a real-time view into how the cancer responds to treatment.

Smile, wave: Some exoplanets may be able to see us, too

Wednesday October 21st, 2020 06:09:31 PM
Three decades after astronomer Carl Sagan suggested that Voyager 1 snap Earth's picture from billions of miles away -- resulting in the iconic Pale Blue Dot photograph - two astronomers now offer another unique cosmic perspective: Some exoplanets -- planets from beyond our own solar system - have a direct line of sight to observe Earth's biological qualities from far, far away.

Turbulent era sparked leap in human behavior, adaptability 320,000 years ago

Wednesday October 21st, 2020 06:09:19 PM
The first analysis of a sedimentary drill core representing 1 million years of environmental history in the East African Rift Valley shows that at the same time early humans were abandoning old tools in favor of more sophisticated technology and broadening their trade, their landscape was experiencing frequent fluctuations in vegetation and water supply that made resources less reliably available. The findings suggest that instability in their landscape was a key driver of human adaptability.

Observed COVID-19 variability may have underlying molecular sources

Wednesday October 21st, 2020 06:09:15 PM
People have different susceptibilities to SARS-CoV-2, the virus behind the COVID-19 pandemic, and develop varying degrees of fever, fatigue, and breathing problems -- common symptoms of the illness. What might explain this variation? Scientists may have an answer to this mystery.

DNA: At our cores, we're all strengthened by 'dumbbells'

Wednesday October 21st, 2020 06:09:12 PM
Scientists detail the structure of dumbbell-like sequences in DNA during interphase that suggest several unseen aspects of chromosome configuration and function.

Genome archeologists discover path to activate immune response against cancer

Wednesday October 21st, 2020 06:09:10 PM
Ancient embedded elements in our DNA from generations past can activate a powerful immune response to kill cancer cells like an infection.

Novel method for measuring spatial dependencies turns less data into more data

Wednesday October 21st, 2020 06:09:08 PM
Researcher makes 'little data' act big through, the application of mathematical techniques normally used for time-series, to spatial processes.

Tumor DNA in spinal fluid could help doctors better monitor childhood brain cancer

Wednesday October 21st, 2020 05:01:48 PM
Researchers have demonstrated that a new liquid biopsy approach overcomes traditional barriers to quickly and efficiently diagnose and monitor high-grade pediatric gliomas.

Delivering proteins to testes could someday treat male infertility

Wednesday October 21st, 2020 05:01:45 PM
According to the Mayo Clinic, about 15% of couples are infertile, and male infertility plays a role in over one-third of these cases. Often, problems with sperm development are to blame. Now, researchers have found a way to deliver a protein important for sperm cell production directly to mouse testicles, where it restored normal sperm development and allowed previously infertile mice to father pups.

A flexible color-changing film inspired by chameleon skin

Wednesday October 21st, 2020 05:01:41 PM
Chameleons can famously change their colors to camouflage themselves, communicate and regulate their temperature. Scientists have tried to replicate these color-changing properties for stealth technologies, anti-counterfeiting measures and electronic displays, but the materials have limitations. Now, researchers have developed a flexible film that changes color in response to stretching, pressure or humidity.

Chili-shaped device could reveal just how hot that pepper is

Wednesday October 21st, 2020 05:01:39 PM
Some people love spicy food -- the hotter, the better. Others go out of their way to avoid the palate-singeing burn of capsaicin, the compound that gives chili peppers their kick. Now, researchers have developed a portable device (whimsically shaped like a chili pepper) that can reveal how much capsaicin a pepper contains, before biting into it.

Americans' responses to COVID-19 stay-home orders differed according to population density

Wednesday October 21st, 2020 05:01:36 PM
Americans strongly reduced their visits to grocery stores, pharmacies, and transit stations following stay-at-home orders from mayors and governors earlier this year, but did not reduce their visits to parks and beaches.

Protected areas help waterbirds adapt to climate change

Wednesday October 21st, 2020 05:01:32 PM
Climate change pushes species distribution areas northward. However, the expansion of species ranges is not self-evident due to e.g. habitat degradation and unsustainable harvesting caused by human activities. A new study suggests that protected areas can facilitate wintering waterbird adaptation to climate warming by advancing their range shifts towards north.

How do snakes 'see' in the dark? Researchers have an answer

Wednesday October 21st, 2020 05:01:25 PM
Certain species of snake -- think pit vipers, boa constrictors and pythons, among others -- are able to find and capture prey with uncanny accuracy, even in total darkness. Now scientists have discovered how these creatures are able to convert the heat from organisms that are warmer than their ambient surroundings into electrical signals, allowing them to 'see' in the dark.

MonoEye: A human motion capture system using a single wearable camera

Wednesday October 21st, 2020 03:24:16 PM
Researchers have developed a new human motion capture system that consists of a single ultra-wide fisheye camera mounted on the user's chest. The simplicity of their system could be conducive to a wide range of applications in the sports, medical and entertainment fields.

A new way of looking at the Earth's interior

Wednesday October 21st, 2020 03:24:14 PM
Current understanding is that the chemical composition of the Earth's mantle is relatively homogeneous. But experiments now show that this view is too simplistic. Their results solve a key problem facing the geosciences - and raise some new questions.

Kitchen temperature supercurrents from stacked 2D materials

Wednesday October 21st, 2020 03:24:06 PM
A 'stack' of 2D materials could allow for supercurrents at ground-breakingly warm temperatures, easily achievable in the household kitchen. An international study opens a new route to high-temperature supercurrents -- at temperatures, as 'warm' as inside your kitchen fridge. (Previously, superconductivity has been difficult even at temperatures as low as -170°C, making superconductivity impractical for many of its most exciting applications.)

The consequences of mating at the molecular level

Wednesday October 21st, 2020 03:24:04 PM
Researchers identified a novel mechanism by which mating affects the behavior of germline stem cells (GSCs). By studying Drosophila melanogaster, the researchers showed that the neurons that are activated during mating result in increased intracellular calcium signaling in cells adjacent to GSCs, which in turn resulted in the activation of the protein matrix metalloproteinase to increase GSCs. This study describes how stem cell behavior is regulated by environmental cues.

Simple software creates complex wooden joints

Wednesday October 21st, 2020 03:24:02 PM
Wood is considered an attractive construction material for both aesthetic and environmental purposes. Construction of useful wood objects requires complicated structures and ways to connect components together. Researchers created a novel 3D design application to hugely simplify the design process and also provide milling machine instructions to efficiently produce the designed components. The designs do not require nails or glue, meaning items made with this system can be easily assembled, disassembled, reused, repaired or recycled.

This white paint keeps surfaces cooler than surroundings, even under direct sunlight

Wednesday October 21st, 2020 03:23:58 PM
Scientists have developed a white paint that cools below the temperature of its ambient surroundings even under direct sunlight. Their research demonstrates a radiative cooling technology that could be used in commercial paints, that could be less expensive to manufacture, and that passively reflects 95.5% of sunlight that reaches its surface back into outer space.






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