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  • New brain pathways for understanding type 2 diabetes and obesity uncovered
    Researchers have identified neural pathways that increase understanding of how the brain regulates body weight, energy expenditure, and blood glucose levels – a discovery that can lead to new therapies for treating Type 2 diabetes and obesity.
  • Scalping can raise ticket prices
    A new study finds that resale markets like Craigslist can add value to tickets sold by concert venues and Ticketmaster.
  • New EMS system dramatically improves survival from cardiac arrest
    A new emergency medicine system that sent patients to designated cardiac receiving centers dramatically increased the survival rate of victims of sudden cardiac arrest in Arizona, according to a study. Under the study, 31 hospitals, serving about 80 percent of the state's population, were designated as cardiac receiving centers between December 2007 and November 2010. Approximately 55 emergency medicine service agencies also participated in the study.
  • Designer potatoes on the menu to boost consumption
    A decline in overall potato consumption has breeders working on “designer” spuds that meet the time constraints and unique tastes of a younger generation.
  • Slow walking speed, memory complaints can predict dementia
    A study involving nearly 27,000 older adults on five continents found that nearly 1 in 10 met criteria for pre-dementia based on a simple test that measures how fast people walk and whether they have cognitive complaints. People who tested positive for pre-dementia were twice as likely as others to develop dementia within 12 years.
  • Anti-inflammatory drug can prevent neuron loss in Parkinson's model
    An experimental anti-inflammatory drug can protect vulnerable neurons and reduce motor deficits in a rat model of Parkinson's disease, a study has shown. The findings demonstrate that the drug, called XPro1595, can reach the brain at sufficient levels and have beneficial effects when administered by subcutaneous injection, like an insulin shot. Previous studies of XPro1595 in animals tested more invasive modes of delivery, such as direct injection into the brain.
  • Manipulating key protein in brain holds potential against obesity, diabetes
    A protein that controls when genes are switched on or off plays a key role in specific areas of the brain to regulate metabolism, researchers have found. The research potentially could lead to new therapies to treat obesity and diabetes, since the transcription factor involved – spliced X-box binding protein 1 – appears to influence the body's sensitivity to insulin and leptin signaling.
  • Experiences at every stage of life contribute to cognitive abilities in old age
    Early life experiences, such as childhood socioeconomic status and literacy, may have greater influence on the risk of cognitive impairment late in life than such demographic characteristics as race and ethnicity, a large study has found. "These findings are important," explained the lead author of the study "because it challenges earlier research that suggests associations between race and ethnicity, particularly among Latinos, and an increased risk of late-life cognitive impairment and dementia.
  • Collecting just the right data: Algorithm helps identify which data to target
    Much artificial-intelligence research addresses the problem of making predictions based on large data sets. An obvious example is the recommendation engines at retail sites like Amazon and Netflix. But some types of data are harder to collect -- information about geological formations thousands of feet underground, for instance. And in other applications -- such as trying to predict the path of a storm -- there may just not be enough time to crunch all the available data. When you can't collect all the data you need, a new algorithm tells you which to target.
  • Intensity of hurricanes: New study helps improve predictions of storm intensity
    While predicting the path of hurricanes has gotten better, little has been done to improve predicting a storm's intensity. That is, until now. "The air-water interface -- whether it had significant waves or significant spray -- is a big factor in storm intensity," said one expert involved in a new study. "Hurricanes gain heat energy through the interface and they lose mechanical energy at the interface."
  • Test increases odds of correct surgery for thyroid cancer patients
    The routine use of a molecular testing panel increases the likelihood of performing the correct initial surgery for thyroid cancer patients by 30 percent, researchers report. "Before this test, about one in five potential thyroid cancer cases couldn't be diagnosed without an operation to remove a portion of the thyroid," said the lead author.
  • Magnets for fusion energy: High-temperature superconductor achieves new world record for electrical current
    Scientists have achieved an electrical current of 100,000 amperes, which is by far the highest in the world, by using the new idea of assembling the state-of-the-art yttrium-based high-temperature superconducting tapes to fabricate a large-scale magnet conductor.
  • Why do men prefer nice women? Responsiveness and desire
    Does responsiveness increase sexual desire in the other person? Do men perceive responsive women as more attractive, and does the same hold true for women's perceptions of men? A recent study undertook to answer those questions.
  • New system to detect mercury in water systems
    A new ultra-sensitive, low-cost and portable system for detecting mercury in environmental water has been developed by researchers. "The promising sensing performance of this system along with its cost-competiveness and portability make it an excellent potential alternative to current analytical techniques," says the project's leader. "This technique could provide the basis for future point-of-analysis systems for monitoring water quality on site and may help implement better monitoring processes around the world."
  • Nanoparticle 'alarm clock' tested to awaken immune systems put to sleep by cancer
    Researchers are exploring ways to wake up the immune system so it recognizes and attacks invading cancer cells. One pioneering approach uses nanoparticles to jumpstart the body’s ability to fight tumors. Nanoparticles are too small to imagine. One billion could fit on the head of a pin. This makes them stealthy enough to penetrate cancer cells with therapeutic agents such as antibodies, drugs, vaccine type viruses, or even metallic particles.
  • Monitoring rise and fall of the microbiome
    Close analysis of bacteria in the human digestive tract reveals links to diet and other lifestyle factors, researchers report. Trillions of bacteria live in each person's digestive tract. Scientists believe that some of these bacteria help digest food and stave off harmful infections, but their role in human health is not well understood.
  • Total darkness at night key to success of breast cancer therapy, study shows
    Exposure to light at night, which shuts off nighttime production of the hormone melatonin, renders breast cancer completely resistant to tamoxifen, a widely used breast cancer drug, says a new study. Melatonin by itself delayed the formation of tumors and significantly slowed their growth, researchers report, but tamoxifen caused a dramatic regression of tumors in animals with either high nighttime levels of melatonin during complete darkness or those receiving melatonin supplementation during dim light at night exposure.
  • Informed consent: False positives not a worry in lung cancer study
    A false positive screen result -- a screening test in which initial findings of concern for cancer are later found not to be worrisome -- did not cause participants undue anxiety or reduced quality of life, a new study shows. Researchers hypothesize that clear and accurate consent forms prepared patients for these false positive diagnoses.
  • Less than 1% of UK public research funding spent on antibiotic research in past 5 years
    Less than 1% of research funding awarded by public and charitable bodies to UK researchers in 2008–13 was awarded for research on antibiotics, according to new research. The study, which is the first detailed assessment of public and charitable funding to UK researchers focusing on bacteriology and antibiotic research, suggests that present levels of funding for antibiotic research in the UK are inadequate, and will need to be urgently increased if the growing crisis of antibiotic resistance is to be tackled effectively by UK researchers.
  • Could heart attack patients could be treated more quickly?
    Clinical judgement, combined with an electrocardiogram (ECG) and blood test on arrival, is effective in reducing unnecessary hospital admissions for chest pain, a new study shows. The findings of a research group could potentially make a huge difference to a large number of patients. Researchers assessed the diagnostic accuracy of emergency doctors’ clinical judgement for acute coronary syndromes – both alone and in combination with the tests available on arrival – ECG and a blood test which detects a protein called troponin.
  • Bacteria manipulate salt to build shelters to hibernate
    For the first time, researchers have detected an unknown interaction between microorganisms and salt. When Escherichia coli cells are introduced into a droplet of salt water that is left to dry, bacteria manipulate the sodium chloride crystallization to create biomineralogical biosaline 3-D morphologically complex formations, where they hibernate. Afterwards, simply by rehydrating the material, bacteria are revived. The discovery was made by chance with a home microscope.
  • Breakthrough laser experiment reveals liquid-like motion of atoms within an ultra-cold cluster
    A new study has furthered our understanding of how tiny nanosystems function, unlocking the potential to create new materials using nanosized ‘building blocks’.
  • Physicists create tool to foresee language destruction impact and thus prevent it
    Researchers defined parameters that estimate the speed of regression of a native language when replaced by one of its neighboring languages. The study focused on the case of Welsh. In a wider context, this type of model could be applied to other examples of cultural changes in which the more favorable traits expand and abolish the predominance of a native cultural trait.
  • Optimum ventilation strategy during general anaesthesia in abdominal operations found
    A multi-centre study at 30 centres across Europe, North and South America involving a total of 900 test subjects has investigated various ventilation strategies currently used during anaesthesia given for surgical procedures involving the abdomen to see just how effective they are.
  • GSAD and Plant rDNA database: Two open platforms with plant cytogenetic information
    Having cytogenetic information about plants is basic to classify species and promote new studies on agriculture and crop improvement. This is the main objective of two online platforms that collect chromosome information and provide it to the scientific community.
  • Dementia carers need more medication support, report says
    Family carers of people with dementia may need more support with medication management, according to a recent study. "Family carers have a key role in supporting medication management particularly as the dementia progresses. We need to understand the challenges that family carers face and how healthcare professionals can help," an author noted.
  • 'Light pollution' may affect love lives of birds in the Viennese Forests
    Artificial light in cities exerts negative effects on humans, animals, and their environment. In an ongoing research project, behavioral biologists are investigating how blue tits in the Viennese Forests react to "light pollution." The study might help to understand effects of “light-at-night” on reproductive behavior of birds. In consequence, it could help developing concepts, minimizing negative effects on the lives of animals and the ecological system, by reducing light sources in specific regions.
  • Is Europe putting cancer research at risk?
    Experts have expressed concern that the proposed EU General Data Protection Regulation could make cancer research impossible and add a significant burden to both doctors and cancer patients. The proposed wording of the regulation stipulates ‘explicit and specific patient consent’, meaning that researchers would have to approach patients every single time research is planned in order to consult their data or use tissue samples stored for research purposes.
  • Vulnerable populations disproportionately affected by food security, despite public programs
    Vulnerable populations such as children, the elderly, ethnic minorities, and low-income households are disproportionately affected by food security, despite the extensive private and public food safety net in the United States, according to a new report. The USDA refers to food insecurity as the limited or uncertain availability of nutritionally adequate and safe foods, or limited or uncertain ability to obtain food in socially acceptable ways.
  • New hope for powdery mildew resistant barley
    New research has opened the way for the development of new lines of barley with resistance to powdery mildew. "Powdery mildew is a significant problem wherever barley is grown around the world," says the lead researcher. "Growers with infected crops can expect up to 25% reductions in yield and the barley may also be downgraded from high quality malting barley to that of feed quality, with an associated loss in market value."
  • Brain tumor causes, risk factors elude scientists
    Today, nearly 700,000 people in the U.S. are living with a brain tumor, and yet, when it comes to pinpointing causes or risk factors, scientists are still searching for answers. "Unlike the strong correlation between smoking and lung cancer, we just haven't found a specific risk factor like that for brain tumors," said a researcher. "We have determined that ionizing radiation to the head is a risk factor when received in therapeutic doses, but even in those cases, the risk of developing a brain tumor is low."
  • Steam energy from the sun: New spongelike structure converts solar energy into steam
    A new material structure generates steam by soaking up the sun. The structure -- a layer of graphite flakes and an underlying carbon foam -- is a porous, insulating material structure that floats on water. When sunlight hits the structure's surface, it creates a hotspot in the graphite, drawing water up through the material's pores, where it evaporates as steam. The brighter the light, the more steam is generated.
  • Common blood thinner for pregnant women proven ineffective
    A daily injection to the belly commonly prescribed for pregnant women at risk of developing blood clots is found to be ineffective. As many as one in 10 pregnant women have a tendency to develop blood clots in their veins, a condition called thrombophilia. The anticoagulant LMWH has been prescribed for two decades to prevent related pregnancy complications. Now, a study provides conclusive evidence that it has no positive benefits for the mother or child, and could actually cause pregnant women some minor harm.
  • Saharan dust is key to formation of Bahamas' Great Bank, study finds
    Saharan dust played a major role in the formation of the Bahamas islands, a new study suggests. Researchers showed that iron-rich Saharan dust provides the nutrients necessary for specialized bacteria to produce the island chain's carbonate-based foundation. Persistent winds across Africa's 3.5-million square mile Sahara Desert lifts mineral-rich sand into the atmosphere where it travels the nearly 5,000-mile northwest journey towards the U.S. and Caribbean.
  • Large raptors in Africa used for bushmeat, study indicates
    Bushmeat, the use of native animal species for food or commercial food sale, has been heavily documented to be a significant factor in the decline of many species of primates and other mammals. However, a new study indicates that more than half of the species being consumed are birds, particularly large birds like raptors and hornbills.
  • Overweight, obese preschoolers lose more weight when parent is also treated
    Primary care treatment of overweight and obese preschoolers works better when treatment targets both parent and child compared to when only the child is targeted. The study results suggest that overweight or obese children and their parents can be successfully treated in the primary care setting with the assistance of practice enhancers.
  • Earlier Stone Age artifacts found in Northern Cape of South Africa
    Excavations at an archaeological site at Kathu in the Northern Cape province of South Africa have produced tens of thousands of Earlier Stone Age artifacts, including hand axes and other tools.
  • Parched West is using up underground water: Study points to grave implications for Western U.S. water supply
    A new study finds more than 75 percent of the water loss in the drought-stricken Colorado River Basin since late 2004 came from underground resources. The extent of groundwater loss may pose a greater threat to the water supply of the western United States than previously thought.
  • Brain's dynamic duel underlies win-win choices
    People choosing between two or more equally positive outcomes experience paradoxical feelings of pleasure and anxiety, feelings associated with activity in different regions of the brain, according to research. In the study, participants made choices between paired products with different or similar values. Choosing between two items of high value evoked the most positive feelings and the greatest anxiety.
  • Moose drool inhibits growth of toxic fungus
    Research shows a surprisingly effective way to fight against a certain species of toxic grass fungus: moose saliva. Inspired by an earlier study that showed that moose grazing and saliva distribution can have a positive effect on plant growth, the research team set out to test an interesting hypothesis -- whether moose saliva may, in fact, "detoxify" the grass before it is eaten.
  • Antioxidant biomaterial promotes healing
    The first-ever inherently antioxidant biomaterial has been created by researcher. It has the potential to prevent failure in medical devices and surgical implants. The lead researcher said the new biomaterial could be used to create scaffolds for tissue engineering, coat or build safer medical devices, promote healing in regenerative medicine, and protect cells, genes, and viruses during drug delivery. He added that the new biomaterial is easy to make and inexpensive.
  • Biologist warn of early stages of Earth's sixth mass extinction event
    The planet's current biodiversity, the product of 3.5 billion years of evolutionary trial and error, is the highest in the history of life. But it may be reaching a tipping point. Scientists caution that the loss and decline of animals is contributing to what appears to be the early days of the planet's sixth mass biological extinction event. Since 1500, more than 320 terrestrial vertebrates have become extinct. Populations of the remaining species show a 25 percent average decline in abundance. The situation is similarly dire for invertebrate animal life.
  • New approach to form non-equilibrium structures
    Researchers get closer to understanding the fundamentals of non-equilibrium, self-assembled structures, unlocking potential in a variety of fields. By injecting energy through oscillations, researchers can force particles to self assemble under non-equilibrium conditions, they report.
  • New characteristics of complex oxide surfaces revealed
    A combination of microscopy and data processing has given researchers an unprecedented look at the surface of a material known for its unusual physical and electrochemical properties.
  • Humans share fairness concerns with other species
    Humans aren’t the only species to react strongly to actions they consider unfair. A similar drive for fairness in monkeys and some dogs may offer insight into people’s desire for equity, according to experts.
  • Gun violence prevention requires public health approach, experts say
    Preventing gun violence will require a scientific public health approach and recognition of the limits of predicting individual cases of violence, according to experts.
  • How to power California with wind, water and sun
    New research outlines the path to a possible future for California in which renewable energy creates a healthier environment, generates jobs and stabilizes energy prices.
  • Books, videos and other 'experiential products' provide same happiness boost as life experiences
    'Experiential products,' items such as books or musical instruments that are designed to create or enhance an experience, can make shoppers just as happy as life experiences, according to a new study. While life experiences help consumers feel closer to others, experiential products fulfill their users' need for 'competence' by utilizing their skills and knowledge. Both effects provide the same happiness boost, researchers found.
  • Global wildlife decline driving slave labor, organized crime
    Global decline of wildlife populations is driving increases in violent conflicts, organized crime and child labor around the world, according to a experts. Researchers call for biologists to join forces with experts such as economists, political scientists, criminologists, public health officials and international development specialists to collectively tackle a complex challenge.
  • Pesticide linked to three generations of disease: Methoxychlor causes epigenetic changes
    Researchers say ancestral exposures to the pesticide methoxychlor may lead to adult onset kidney disease, ovarian disease and obesity in future generations.
  • Linking microbial, immune environment in semen to HIV viral load, transmission
    HIV infection re-shapes the relationship between semen bacteria and immune factors which in turn affects viral load, suggesting that the semen microbiome plays a role in sexual transmission of HIV, researchers report. While HIV is found in many body fluids, sexual transmission through semen is the most common route of infection.
  • No returning to Eden: Researchers explore how to restore species in a changing world
    Reversing the increasing rate of global biodiversity losses may not be possible without embracing intensive, and sometimes controversial, forms of threatened species management, according to zoologists.
  • Synchronization of North Atlantic, North Pacific preceded abrupt warming, end of ice age
    Scientists have long been concerned that global warming may push Earth's climate system across a 'tipping point,' where rapid melting of ice and further warming may become irreversible -- a hotly debated scenario with an unclear picture of what this point of no return may look like. A new study suggests that combined warming of the North Atlantic and Pacific Oceans thousands of years ago may have provided the tipping point for abrupt warming and rapid melting of the northern ice sheets.
  • DNA mostly 'junk?' Only 8.2 percent of human DNA is 'functional', study finds
    Only 8.2 percent of human DNA is likely to be doing something important -- is 'functional' -- say researchers. This figure is very different from one given in 2012, when some scientists involved in the ENCODE (Encyclopedia of DNA Elements) project stated that 80% of our genome has some biochemical function.
  • Atomic structure of key muscle component revealed
    Adding to the growing fundamental understanding of the machinery of muscle cells, a group of biophysicists describe -- in minute detail -- how actin filaments are stabilized at one of their ends to form a basic muscle structure called the sarcomere. With the help of many other proteins, actin molecules polymerize to form filaments that give rise to structures of many different shapes. The actin filaments have a polarity, with a plus and minus end, reflecting their natural tendency to gain or lose subunits when not stabilized.
  • Leaf-mining insects destroyed with the dinosaurs, others quickly appeared
    After the asteroid impact at the end of the Cretaceous period that triggered the dinosaurs' extinction and ushered in the Paleocene, leaf-mining insects in the western United States completely disappeared. Only a million years later, at Mexican Hat, in southeastern Montana, fossil leaves show diverse leaf-mining traces from new insects that were not present during the Cretaceous, according to paleontologists.
  • Childhood friendships crucial in learning to value others
    Friends play an extremely important role in a person’s life. From infancy on, we have a desire to connect and those early relationships help to mold and develop our adult character. Through interactions with one another, we learn to think beyond ourselves to understand the needs and desires of others.
  • Incisionless transcatheter aortic valve replacement (TAVR) surgery associated with shorter hospital stays
    Incisionless transcatheter aortic valve replacement (TAVR) surgery cuts length of hospital stay by 30 percent and has no impact on post-operative vascular complication rates when compared with conventional transfemoral TAVR, which requires an incision in the groin, a study has concluded.
  • Protein couple controls flow of information into brain's memory center
    Neuroscientists have succeeded in providing new insights into how the brain works by analyzing tissue samples from mice to identify how two specific proteins, 'CKAMP44' and 'TARP Gamma-8', act upon the brain's memory center. Brain function depends on the active communication between nerve cells, known as neurons. For this purpose, neurons are woven together into a dense network where they constantly relay signals to one another.
  • Election surprises tend to erode trust in government
    When asked who is going to win an election, people tend to predict their own candidate will come out on top. When that doesn't happen, according to a new study, these 'surprised losers' often have less trust in government and democracy.
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