Latest Science News -- ScienceDaily
Human 'chimeric' cells restore crucial protein in Duchenne muscular dystrophy
Fri, 16 Mar 2018 19:25:15 EDT
Cells made by fusing a normal human muscle cell with a muscle cell from a person with Duchenne muscular dystrophy -- a rare but fatal form of muscular dystrophy -- were able to significantly improve muscle function when implanted into the muscles of a mouse model of the disease.
Soot transported from elsewhere in world contributes little to melting of some Antarctic glaciers
Fri, 16 Mar 2018 19:25:12 EDT
Airborne soot produced by wildfires and fossil-fuel combustion and transported to the remote McMurdo Dry Valleys of Antarctica contains levels of black carbon too low to contribute significantly to the melting of local glaciers, according to a new study.
Raising transparency in the online advertising ecosystem
Fri, 16 Mar 2018 19:25:09 EDT
The online advertising business, led by companies like Google or Facebook, generated over $200 billion revenue in 2017, with an year-over-year growth over 15 percent. This online advertising explosion is raising serious data privacy concerns.
Online intervention improves depression treatment rates in teen moms
Fri, 16 Mar 2018 19:25:06 EDT
An online program persuaded teenage mothers across 10 Kentucky counties to seek medical help for depression, highlighting an inexpensive way to increase mental health treatment rates for the vulnerable group.
The absence of ants: Entomologist confirms first Saharan farming 10,000 years ago
Fri, 16 Mar 2018 15:39:09 EDT
By analysing a prehistoric site in the Libyan desert, a team of researchers has been able to establish that people in Saharan Africa were cultivating and storing wild cereals 10,000 years ago. In addition to revelations about early agricultural practices, there could be a lesson for the future, if global warming leads to a necessity for alternative crops.
Chirping is welcome in birds but not in fusion devices
Fri, 16 Mar 2018 15:39:06 EDT
Birds do it and so do doughnut-shaped fusion facilities called 'tokamaks.' But tokamak chirping -- a rapidly changing frequency wave that can be far above what the human ear can detect -- is hardly welcome to researchers who seek to bring the fusion that powers the sun and stars to Earth.
Piezomagnetic material changes magnetic properties when stretched
Fri, 16 Mar 2018 15:39:02 EDT
Piezoelectric materials, which generate an electric current when compressed or stretched, are familiar and widely used: lighters that spark when you press a switch, microphones, sensors, motors and all kinds of other devices. Now a group of physicists has found a material with a similar property, but for magnetism. This 'piezomagnetic' material changes its magnetic properties when put under mechanical strain.
Genetic variant discovery to help asthma sufferers
Fri, 16 Mar 2018 15:38:59 EDT
Researchers have identified a genetic variant that could improve the safety and effectiveness of corticosteroids, drugs that are used to treat a range of common and rare conditions including asthma, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).
Tree care workers need better training to handle dangers on the job
Fri, 16 Mar 2018 15:38:56 EDT
A new study calls attention to post-storm hazards posed to tree care workers and provides safety recommendations.
Soil fungi may help determine the resilience of forests to environmental change
Fri, 16 Mar 2018 15:38:52 EDT
A major new study reveals that soil fungi could play a significant role in the ability of forests to adapt to environmental change.
Plasmons triggered in nanotube quantum wells
Fri, 16 Mar 2018 12:11:58 EDT
A novel quantum effect observed in a carbon nanotube film could lead to the development of near-infrared lasers and other optoelectronic devices, according to scientists.
Wandering greenhouse gas
Fri, 16 Mar 2018 12:11:56 EDT
On the seafloor of the shallow coastal regions north of Siberia, microorganisms produce methane when they break down plant remains. If this greenhouse gas finds its way into the water, it can also become trapped in the sea ice that forms in these coastal waters.
Mice change their appearance as a result of frequent exposure to humans
Fri, 16 Mar 2018 11:30:53 EDT
Many tame domesticated animals have a different appearance compared to their relatives in the wild, for example white patches in their fur or shorter snouts. Researchers have now for the first time shown that wild house mice develop the same visible changes -- without selection, as a result of exposure to humans alone.
Two better than one: Chemists advance sustainable battery technology
Fri, 16 Mar 2018 11:14:18 EDT
Chemists describe design and synthesis of a pi-conjugation-extended viologen molecule as a novel, two-electron storage anolyte for neutral total organic aqueous redox flow batteries.
Researchers advise the use of anesthesia in fetuses from 21 weeks of gestation
Fri, 16 Mar 2018 11:14:13 EDT
Although the problem of whether fetuses are able to feel pain or not is still controversial, researchers in Spain have found that from the second trimester of pregnancy, the future baby already shows signs of pain when given a harmful stimulus or as a response to stress. The finding, the researchers argue, indicate the need to anesthetize the fetus during open fetal surgery.
Climate change promotes the spread of mosquito and tick-borne viruses
Fri, 16 Mar 2018 11:13:11 EDT
Scientists find that global warming has allowed disease-bearing insects to proliferate, increasing exposure to viral infections.
Neighborhood wellbeing and a sense of community is at the heart of a good home, say researchers
Fri, 16 Mar 2018 10:10:18 EDT
A sense of wellbeing and a thriving community is key to a happy neighborhood according to housing researchers, who looked at the relationship between the experience of the home and well-being.
Menomous Solenodon, last survivor of a branch of mammals that appeared at the time of the dinosaurs, sequenced
Fri, 16 Mar 2018 10:06:38 EDT
An article presents a draft genome of a small shrew-like animal, the venomous Hispaniolan solenodon. This unusual animal is one of the only extant venomous mammals, and it is the sole remaining branch of mammals that split from other insectivores at the time of the dinosaurs. The solenodon genome sequence revealed the answer to several evolutionary questions, such as whether the solenodon species indeed survived the meteor impact that killed the dinosaurs.
Potential RNA Markers of abnormal heart rhythms identified in circulating blood
Fri, 16 Mar 2018 10:05:38 EDT
The irregular heart rhythm atrial fibrillation (AF) increases the risk of stroke and heart failure, but is often undiagnosed because of a lack of symptoms. Now, researchers have identified four short lengths of RNA (miRNAs) that show increased expression in the circulating blood of AF patients. These miRNAs could be used as potential biomarkers to predict the onset of AF disease.
Americans slow down the clock of age
Fri, 16 Mar 2018 10:04:36 EDT
A close examination of national health data indicate that the rate of biological aging appears to be more delayed for all Americans, but particularly for men, which may extend their lives. Researchers cite advancements in medicine as one possible reason for the deceleration.
Reefs help protect vulnerable Caribbean fish from climate change
Fri, 16 Mar 2018 10:03:14 EDT
New research suggests that larger reef areas may help protect the Caribbean's coral reef fish communities from the impacts of ocean warming.
Coral reefs suffering in Philippines despite outlawing damaging fishing practices
Fri, 16 Mar 2018 10:03:07 EDT
Some of the fishing methods used in today's small-scale fisheries are causing more damage to coral reefs than ever, a new study has found.
Which skills will help patients with obsessive-compulsive disorder?
Fri, 16 Mar 2018 10:02:45 EDT
Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is a complex psychological condition, and those who suffer from it experience severe reduction in their quality of life. A new study now shows that OCD sufferers need to adopt adaptive coping skills rather than the maladaptive strategies often used such as repetitive, compulsive actions or creating emotional distance from a situation, in order to effectively manage their condition.
Study of nearly 300,000 people challenges the 'obesity paradox'
Thu, 15 Mar 2018 20:39:16 EDT
The idea that it might be possible to be overweight or obese but not at increased risk of heart disease, otherwise known as the 'obesity paradox', has been challenged by a study of nearly 300,000 people. The research shows that the risk of heart and blood vessel problems, such as heart attacks, strokes and high blood pressure, increases as body mass index (BMI) increases beyond a BMI of 22-23 kg/m2.
Early puberty linked with increased risk of obesity for women
Thu, 15 Mar 2018 20:38:19 EDT
Girls who start puberty earlier are more likely to be overweight as adults, finds new research.
Ending overfishing would stop the population declines of endangered bycatch species about half the time
Thu, 15 Mar 2018 15:54:49 EDT
A study finds that ending overfishing would stop the population declines of endangered bycatch species about half the time.
Artificial sweetener could intensify symptoms in those with Crohn's disease
Thu, 15 Mar 2018 15:54:11 EDT
In a study that has implications for humans with inflammatory diseases, researchers have found that, given over a six-week period, the artificial sweetener sucralose, known by the brand name Splenda, worsens gut inflammation in mice with Crohn's disease, but had no substantive effect on those without the condition.
Virtual coaches, fitness trackers help patients stay fit after cardiac rehab
Thu, 15 Mar 2018 14:50:01 EDT
A 12-week mobile health, or mHealth, program not only kept cardiac rehab patients from losing ground, it appeared to help them maintain and even gain fitness.
New understanding of parasite biology might help stop malaria transmission
Thu, 15 Mar 2018 14:12:32 EDT
Researchers made an important step toward deeper understanding of how malaria blood stage parasites turn the switch to become transmissible to other humans. This knowledge is fundamental for future research aiming to interrupt malaria transmission.
Clearing clumps of protein in aging neural stem cells boosts their activity
Thu, 15 Mar 2018 14:12:29 EDT
Young, resting neural stem cells in the brains of mice store large clumps of proteins in specialized cellular trash compartments known as lysosomes, researchers have found.
New methods find undiagnosed genetic diseases in electronic health records
Thu, 15 Mar 2018 14:12:24 EDT
Researchers have found a way to search genetic data in electronic health records to identify undiagnosed genetic diseases in large populations so treatments can be tailored to the actual cause of the illness.
Scientists discover genomic ancestry of Stone Age North Africans from Morocco
Thu, 15 Mar 2018 14:12:21 EDT
An international team of researchers have sequenced DNA from individuals from Morocco dating to approximately 15,000 years ago. This is the oldest nuclear DNA from Africa ever successfully analyzed. The study shows that the individuals, dating to the Late Stone Age, had a genetic heritage that was in part similar to ancient Levantine Natufians and an uncharacterized sub-Saharan African lineage to which modern West Africans are genetically closest.
Improved capture of cancer cells in blood could help track disease
Thu, 15 Mar 2018 14:12:15 EDT
New research builds on several years of work in isolating circulating tumor cells, or CTCs, by demonstrating improved methods for their capture on clinical samples for the first time.
Democratizing single-cell analysis
Thu, 15 Mar 2018 14:12:10 EDT
Scientists have developed a new low-cost technique for profiling gene expression in hundreds of thousands of cells.
Infants can't talk, but they know how to reason
Thu, 15 Mar 2018 14:07:38 EDT
A new study reveals that preverbal infants are able to make rational deductions, showing surprise when an outcome does not occur as expected.
Researchers create a protein 'mat' that can soak up pollution
Thu, 15 Mar 2018 14:07:35 EDT
In a breakthrough that could lead to a new class of materials with functions found only in living systems, scientists have figured out a way to keep certain proteins active outside of the cell. The researchers used this technology to create mats that can soak up and trap chemical pollution.
Scientists discover evidence of early human innovation, pushing back evolutionary timeline
Thu, 15 Mar 2018 14:07:33 EDT
Scientists discovered that early humans in East Africa had -- by about 320,000 years ago -- begun trading with distant groups, using color pigments and manufacturing more sophisticated tools than those of the Early Stone Age, tens of thousands of years earlier than previous evidence has shown in eastern Africa. As earthquakes remodeled the landscape and climate fluctuated between wet and dry conditions, technological and social innovation would have helped early humans survive unpredictable conditions.
Topsy-turvy currents key to removing nitrate from streams
Thu, 15 Mar 2018 14:07:30 EDT
More than 500 years ago, Leonardo da Vinci sketched what he called 'la turbolenza,' comparing chaotic swirls atop flowing water to curly human hair. It turns out those patterns influence myriad phenomena, from the drag on an airplane's wings and the formation of Jupiter's red spot to the rustling of tree leaves.
Bacterial and host cell proteins interact to regulate Chlamydia's 'exit strategy'
Thu, 15 Mar 2018 14:07:27 EDT
Interactions between Chlamydia trachomatis proteins and host cell proteins help determine whether the bacterium leaves an infected cell via breakdown of the cellular membrane (lysis) or in a membrane-bound package, according to new research.
New model links yellow fever in Africa to climate, environment
Thu, 15 Mar 2018 14:07:24 EDT
The burden of yellow fever in any given area is known to be heavily dependent on climate, particularly rainfall and temperature which can impact both mosquito life cycle and viral replication. Now, researchers have developed a new model to quantify yellow fever dynamics across Africa using not only annual averages of these climatic measures, but seasonal dynamics.
How royal jelly helps honeybee larvae defy gravity and become queens
Thu, 15 Mar 2018 14:07:21 EDT
Honeybee larvae develop into queen bees if they are fed large quantities of a food called royal jelly. But royal jelly does more than determine whether a larva becomes a queen: it also keeps her safely anchored to the roof of the queen cell in which she develops. Research explains how the pH of royal jelly helps make the substance viscous enough to keep the queen-to-be from falling.
Modern humans interbred with Denisovans twice in history
Thu, 15 Mar 2018 14:07:18 EDT
Modern humans co-existed and interbred not only with Neanderthals, but also with another species of archaic humans, the mysterious Denisovans. Research now describes how, while developing a new genome-analysis method for comparing whole genomes between modern human and Denisovan populations, researchers unexpectedly discovered two distinct episodes of Denisovan genetic intermixing, or admixing, between the two. This suggests a more diverse genetic history than previously thought between the Denisovans and modern humans.
Getting lost: Why older people might lose their way
Thu, 15 Mar 2018 14:07:15 EDT
Researchers have found a possible explanation for the difficulty in spatial orientation experienced sometimes by elderly people. In the brains of older adults, they detected an unstable activity in an area that is central for spatial navigation.
Diabetes: Are high blood glucose levels an effect rather than the cause of the disease?
Thu, 15 Mar 2018 14:07:10 EDT
Insulin resistance and elevated blood glucose levels are considered to be the cause of type 2 diabetes. However, scientists have now provided evidence that things might be completely different. They showed in flies that elevated levels of the metabolite MG (methylglyoxal) cause the typical diabetic disturbances of the metabolism and lead to insulin resistance, obesity and elevated blood sugar levels.
Altering songbird brain provides insight into human behavior
Thu, 15 Mar 2018 14:07:07 EDT
A study demonstrates that a bird's song can be altered -- to the syllable -- by activating and deactivating a neuronal pathway responsible for helping the brain determine whether a vocalization is performed correctly.
Potential for personalized immunotherapy to large variety of cancers
Thu, 15 Mar 2018 14:07:05 EDT
A new study shows that ovarian cancer, which has proved resistant to currently available immunotherapies, could be susceptible to personalized immunotherapy.
When natural disaster strikes, can insects and other invertebrates recover?
Thu, 15 Mar 2018 14:07:02 EDT
After a 100-year flood struck south central Oklahoma in 2015, a study of the insects, arthropods, and other invertebrates in the area revealed striking declines of most invertebrates in the local ecosystem, a result that researchers say illustrates the hidden impacts of natural disasters.
Compact fiber optic sensor offers sensitive analysis in narrow spaces
Thu, 15 Mar 2018 14:07:00 EDT
Researchers have developed a new flexible sensor with high sensitivity that is designed to perform variety of chemical and biological analyses in very small spaces.
Microplastics in rivers
Thu, 15 Mar 2018 13:08:37 EDT
To what extent are Germany's rivers contaminated by microplastics? A new study provides some specific clues for the first time. Between 2014 and 2017, a research group gathered and analyzed water samples from 22 rivers, mainly in the catchment area of the Rhein and Donau rivers. The new findings now represent one of the world's largest data sets from standardized studies on the appearance of plastic particles in rivers.
False beliefs about MMR vaccine found to influence acceptance of Zika vaccine
Thu, 15 Mar 2018 13:07:17 EDT
People's willingness to use a Zika vaccine, once it's available, will be influenced by how they weigh the risks associated with the disease and the vaccine, but also by their misconceptions about other vaccines.
Childhood aggression linked to deficits in executive function
Thu, 15 Mar 2018 13:07:14 EDT
Researchers find that primary school children with reduced cognitive skills for planning and self-restraint are more likely to show increased aggression in middle childhood. The study examined the relationship between aggression and executive function -- a measure of cognitive skills that allow a person to achieve goals by controlling their behavior. The results suggest that helping children to increase their executive function could reduce their aggression.
The complex journey of red bloods cells through microvascular networks
Thu, 15 Mar 2018 13:07:10 EDT
While the behavior of blood cells flowing within single, straight vessels is a well-known problem, less is known about the individual cellular-scale events giving rise to blood behavior in microvascular networks.
The view from inside supersonic combustion
Thu, 15 Mar 2018 13:07:07 EDT
In supersonic engines, achieving the right flow speed, producing the right ratio of evaporated fuel and causing ignition at the right time is complex. Vortices are affected by the shock wave, and this changes the way the fuel combusts and multiplies the number of possibilities of how particles can behave. To deepen our understanding, researchers use numerical modeling to calculate the huge variety of possible outcomes.
Scientists map the portal to the cell's nucleus
Thu, 15 Mar 2018 13:07:04 EDT
The gateway to cellular headquarters has 552 components. A new map that shows how all these pieces fit together could help scientists study numerous diseases.
Cell therapy could improve brain function for Alzheimer's disease
Thu, 15 Mar 2018 13:06:59 EDT
Inhibitory interneurons are particularly important for managing brain rhythms. Researchers have uncovered the therapeutic benefits of genetically improving these interneurons and transplanting them into the brain of a mouse model of Alzheimer's disease.
Neuroscientists identify brain circuit that integrates head motion with visual signals
Thu, 15 Mar 2018 13:06:56 EDT
Neuroscientists have identified a circuit in the primary visual cortex (V1) of the brain that integrates head- and visual-motion signals. The study elucidates the mechanisms by which visual and vestibular inputs to the brain sum together to enable appropriate behavioral responses.
A new use for graphene: Making better hair dyes
Thu, 15 Mar 2018 12:29:48 EDT
Graphene, a naturally black material, could provide a new strategy for dyeing dark hair that will make it less prone to staticky flyaways. Researchers have put it to the test. They used sheets of graphene to make a dye that adheres to the surface of hair, forming a coating that is resistant to 30 washes without the need for chemicals that damage the hair cuticle.
Brain mechanism involved in language learning
Thu, 15 Mar 2018 12:29:45 EDT
Psychologists found that when we learn the names of unfamiliar objects, brain regions involved in learning actively predict the objects the names correspond to.
Molecular basis of major antibiotic resistance transfer mechanism unraveled
Thu, 15 Mar 2018 12:29:43 EDT
One of the biggest current threats to global health is the rise of multi-drug resistant bacteria, caused by the spreading of antibiotic resistance amongst them. In an attempt to help fight this threat, researchers have unraveled the molecular basis of a major antibiotic resistance transfer mechanism. They also developed molecules and a proof-of-principle for blocking this transfer.
CRISPR genetic editing takes another big step forward, targeting RNA
Thu, 15 Mar 2018 12:29:40 EDT
Scientists create new molecular scissors to correct protein imbalance in cellular model of dementia.