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Economic security requires new measures of well-being

2015-09-01
BUFFALO, N.Y. - Economic well-being for low-income families in the U.S. is often determined by federal measures that establish basic requirements for essentials such as food, shelter and clothing, but a new study by a University at Buffalo research team suggests that such a definition is unrealistically narrow. To help families move out of poverty, the existing perspective of economic well-being and its short-term focus on basic needs should reflect possibilities for long-term stability, including a savings plan, rather than day-to-day survival, says Yunju Nam, an associate ...

Story tips from the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory, September 2015

2015-09-01
To arrange for an interview with a researcher, please contact the Communications staff member identified at the end of each tip. For more information on ORNL and its research and development activities, please refer to one of our media contacts. If you have a general media-related question or comment, you can send it to news@ornl.gov. MATERIALS - Solar bake test for NASA ... To test an instrument for a spacecraft that will fly closer to the sun than any before, engineers at Oak Ridge National Laboratory and the University of California-Berkeley used ORNL's powerful ...

To email or not to email? For those in love, it's better than leaving a voice message

2015-09-01
BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- In her hit single, Carly Rae Jepsen may have sung, "Here's my number, so call me maybe." But according to a new research study from Indiana University, she might be more successful in finding love if she asked him to send her an email. The research, which has been accepted for publication in the journal Computers in Human Behavior, suggests that, in this digital age, an email can be more effective in expressing romantic feelings than leaving a voicemail message. Previous research and conventional wisdom suggested the opposite, that a voicemail message ...

How much liposuction is 'safe'? The answer varies by body weight

2015-09-01
September 1, 2015 - What's the "safe" amount of fat to remove in patients undergoing liposuction? Rather than a hard-and-fast rule, the answer depends on the patient's body mass index (BMI), according to a report in the September issue of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery®, the official medical journal of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS). "Our study shows that liposuction is associated with a very low complication rate, with major complications occurring in less than 1 in 1,000 patients," comments ASPS Member Surgeon John Y.S. Kim of Northwestern ...

Yeast study yields insights into cell-division cycle

2015-09-01
ANN ARBOR--Studies using yeast genetics have provided new, fundamental insights into the cell-division cycle, researchers at the University of Michigan Life Sciences Institute report. Findings published Aug. 31 in the journal eLife show that an organelle known as the vacuole, which performs a variety of cellular housekeeping functions, plays an essential role in the initiation of the cell-division cycle. The cell-division cycle, also known simply as the cell cycle, is the series of events inside a cell that leads to its division. "The yeast vacuole has a counterpart ...

Study in mice suggests how anesthesia may fight lung infections

2015-09-01
In use for more than a century, inhaled anesthetics like nitrous oxide and halothane have made modern surgery possible. Now, in experiments in mice, researchers at Johns Hopkins and elsewhere have added to evidence that certain so-called "volatile" anesthetics -- commonly used during surgeries -- may also possess powerful effects on the immune system that can combat viral and bacterial infections in the lung, including influenza and pneumonia. A report on the experiments is published in the September 1 issue of the journal Anesthesiology. The Johns Hopkins and University ...

NASA-NOAA's Suomi NPP satellite sees Tropical Depression 14E disorganized

NASA-NOAAs Suomi NPP satellite sees Tropical Depression 14E disorganized
2015-09-01
Tropical Depression 14E was born in the Eastern Pacific Ocean early on September 1 when NASA-NOAA's Suomi NPP satellite passed overhead and looked at it in infrared light. Infrared light shows temperature, which is helpful in determining cloud top temperatures of the thunderstorms that make up a tropical cyclone line Tropical Depression 14E (TD 14E). The colder the storm, the higher they stretch into the troposphere (lowest layer of the atmosphere) and the stronger the storms tend to be. On September 1 at 0900 UTC (5 a.m. EDT), NASA-NOAA's Suomi NPP satellite passed ...

NASA sees wind shear affecting Hurricane Ignacio

NASA sees wind shear affecting Hurricane Ignacio
2015-09-01
Hurricane Ignacio is staying far enough away from the Hawaiian Islands to not bring heavy rainfall or gusty winds, but is still causing rough surf. Infrared satellite data on September 1 shows that wind shear is adversely affecting the storm and weakening it. The Atmospheric Infrared Sounder or AIRS instrument that flies aboard NASA's Aqua satellite gathers infrared data that reveals temperatures. When NASA's Aqua satellite passed over Ignacio on September 1 at 11:41 UTC (7:41 a.m. EDT), the AIRS data and showed some high, cold, strong thunderstorms surrounded the center ...

Could tiny jellyfish propulsion drive design of new underwater craft?

Could tiny jellyfish propulsion drive design of new underwater craft?
2015-09-01
EUGENE, Ore. - Sept. 1, 2015 - The University of Oregon's Kelly Sutherland has seen the future of under-sea exploration by studying the swimming prowess of tiny jellyfish gathered from Puget Sound off Washington's San Juan Island. In a paper with four colleagues in the Sept. 2 issue of the journal Nature Communications, Sutherland details how a tiny type of jellyfish - colonial siphonophores - swim rapidly by coordinating multiple water-shooting jets from separate but genetically identical units that make up the animal. Information on the biomechanics of a living organism ...

Marine animal colony is a multi-jet swimming machine, scientists report

Marine animal colony is a multi-jet swimming machine, scientists report
2015-09-01
WOODS HOLE, MASS.--Marine animals that swim by jet propulsion, such as squid and jellyfish, are not uncommon. But it's rare to find a colony of animals that coordinates multiple jets for whole-group locomotion. This week in Nature Communications, scientists report on a colonial jellyfish-like species, Nanomia bijuga, that uses a sophisticated, multi-jet propulsion system based on an elegant division of labor among young and old members of the colony. This locomotive solution, the team suggests, could illuminate the design of underwater distributed-propulsion vehicles. "This ...

Can marijuana help transplant patients? New research says maybe

2015-09-01
Here's another discovery to bolster the case for medical marijuana: New research in mice suggests that THC, the active ingredient in marijuana, may delay the rejection of incompatible organs. Although more research is necessary to determine if there are benefits to humans, this suggests that THC, or a derivative, might prove to be a useful antirejection therapy, particularly in situations where transplanted organs may not be a perfect match. These findings were published in the September 2015 issue of The Journal of Leukocyte Biology. "We are excited to demonstrate for ...

Forgiving others protects women from depression, but not men

2015-09-01
COLUMBIA, Mo. - Forgiveness is a complex process, one often fraught with difficulty and angst. Now, researchers in the University of Missouri College of Human Environmental Sciences studied how different facets of forgiveness affected aging adults' feelings of depression. The researchers found older women who forgave others were less likely to report depressive symptoms regardless of whether they felt unforgiven by others. Older men, however, reported the highest levels of depression when they both forgave others and felt unforgiven by others. The researchers say their ...

Police at risk of traffic injuries in stopped cars, as well as when speeding, study finds

2015-09-01
Police officers face an elevated risk of being injured in a collision when they are sitting in a stationary car as compared to low-speed driving, as well as when they are responding to an emergency call with their siren blaring as compared to routine patrol, according to a new RAND Corporation study. In addition, officers face a higher risk of being injured in a crash when they are riding a motorcycle compared to a driving a car, driving solo compared to having a second officer in the car, or not wearing a seatbelt compared to wearing a seatbelt. The findings provide ...

Vitamin a implicated in the development of alcoholic liver disease

2015-09-01
With a name like "Alcoholic Liver Disease," you may not think about vitamin A as being part of the problem. That's exactly what scientists have shown, however, in a new research report appearing in the September 2015 issue of The FASEB Journal. In particular, they found that chronic alcohol consumption has a dramatic effect on the way the body handles vitamin A. Long-term drinking lowers vitamin A levels in the liver, which is the main site of alcohol breakdown and vitamin A storage, while raising vitamin A levels in many other tissues. This opens the doors for novel treatments ...

Inntags: new tools for innocuous protein tagging

2015-09-01
The study, published today at Nature Methods (the most prestigious journal for the presentation of results in methods development), proposes the use of two plant protein epitopes, named inntags, as the most innocuous and stable tagging tools in the study of physical and functional interactions of proteins. Proteins and peptides of various sizes and shapes have been used since the early 80s to tag proteins with many different purposes, ranging from affinity purification to fluorescence-based microscopic detection in whole organisms. However, tagging strategies used nowadays ...

Climate change will irreversibly force key ocean bacteria into overdrive

2015-09-01
Imagine being in a car with the gas pedal stuck to the floor, heading toward a cliff's edge. Metaphorically speaking, that's what climate change will do to the key group of ocean bacteria known as Trichodesmium, scientists have discovered. Trichodesmium (called "Tricho" for short by researchers) is one of the few organisms in the ocean that can "fix" atmospheric nitrogen gas, making it available to other organisms. It is crucial because all life -- from algae to whales -- needs nitrogen to grow. A new study from USC and the Massachusetts-based Woods Hole Oceanographic ...

New treatment strategy identified for tumors associated with diabetes

2015-09-01
If you have diabetes and cancer, here's some hope. In a new research report appearing in the September 2015 issue of The FASEB Journal, scientists reveal a newly discovered tissue- and organ-specific mechanism that regulates blood vessel growth, and when inhibited reduced the growth of tumors in diabetic mice. In addition to the treatment of the diabetes-related cancers, the approach may be also used to treat other diabetic complications that are associated with the increased blood vessel growth, like retinopathy or nephropathy for example. "Complications of diabetes ...

Big differences in US healthcare costs for fixing back pain

2015-09-01
Costs for spinal fusion vary substantially by region, with costs being lowest in the Midwest and highest in the Northeast, according to the new research by Dr. W. Ryan Spiker and colleagues of University of Utah, Salt Lake City. They write, "This data sheds light on the actual cost of common surgeries throughout the United States, and will allow further progress towards the development of cost effective, value driven care." New Data on 'Actual Costs' of Common Spine Surgeries The researchers analyzed 2012 Medicare data on the costs of two common types of spinal fusion ...

Preterm birth linked with lower math abilities and less wealth

2015-09-01
People who are born premature tend to accumulate less wealth as adults, and a new study suggests that this may be due to lower mathematics abilities. The findings, published in Psychological Science, a journal of the Association for Psychological Science, show that preterm birth is associated with lower academic abilities in childhood, and lower educational attainment and less wealth in adulthood. "Our findings suggest that the economic costs of preterm birth are not limited to healthcare and educational support in childhood, but extend well into adulthood," says psychological ...

An app twice a day keeps the dentist away

2015-09-01
Research published in the British Dental Journal shows that Brush DJ, an app designed to encourage youngsters to adopt and maintain an effective oral health care routine using evidence-based techniques, is effective in its aims. Brush DJ was launched on the Apple App Store at the end of 2011 and in 2013 it was accepted into the NHS Choices Health Apps Library. By February 2015 Brush DJ, which is free with no advertisements or in-app purchases, had been downloaded on more than 197,000 devices in 188 countries. It can be used with any type of toothbrush. The app plays ...

New technique lowers cost of energy-efficient embedded computer systems

2015-09-01
Electrical and computer engineers at North Carolina State University have developed a new technique for creating less-expensive, low-power embedded systems - the computing devices found in everything from thermostats to automobiles. "Using our techniques, we've been able to create prototype systems with power converters that have a combination of energy efficiency and low cost that - as far as we've been able to tell - is unmatched by anything currently on the market," says Alex Dean, co-author of a paper on the work and an associate professor of electrical and computer ...

Heat and acid could squeeze trout out of southern Appalachian streams

2015-09-01
A newly published research study that combines effects of warming temperatures from climate change with stream acidity projects average losses of around 10 percent of stream habitat for coldwater aquatic species for seven national forests in the southern Appalachians - and up to a 20 percent loss of habitat in the Pisgah and Nantahala National Forests in western North Carolina. Published in the online journal PLOS ONE, the results represent the first regional assessment in the U.S. of aquatic habitat suitability tied to the combined effects of stream temperature and ...

Accuracy of dementia brain imaging must improve

2015-09-01
MRI scans and other tools to detect and diagnose dementia are helpful but not definitive - according to new research from the University of East Anglia. A report published today in The Lancet Neurology evaluates for the first time how well different types of brain imaging tests work to detect Alzheimer's and predict how the disease will progress. The results show that the accuracy of brain imaging must be improved before it can be rolled out on a scale that could be useful to healthcare providers and patients. Co-author Prof Chris Fox says that overplaying the current ...

Can marijuanna help transplant patients? New research says maybe

2015-09-01
Here's another discovery to bolster the case for medical marijuana: New research in mice suggests that THC, the active ingredient in marijuana, may delay the rejection of incompatible organs. Although more research is necessary to determine if there are benefits to humans, this suggests that THC, or a derivative, might prove to be a useful antirejection therapy, particularly in situations where transplanted organs may not be a perfect match. These findings were published in the September 2015 issue of The Journal of Leukocyte Biology. "We are excited to demonstrate for ...

Water heals a bioplastic

Water heals a bioplastic
2015-09-01
A drop of water self-heals a multiphase polymer derived from the genetic code of squid ring teeth, which may someday extend the life of medical implants, fiber-optic cables and other hard to repair in place objects, according to an international team of researchers. "What's unique about this plastic is the ability to stick itself back together with a drop of water," said Melik Demirel, professor of engineering science and mechanics, Penn State. "There are other materials that are self healing, but not with water." Demirel and his team looked at the ring teeth of squid ...
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