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New water batteries stay cool under pressure

New water batteries stay cool under pressure
2024-02-21
A global team of researchers and industry collaborators led by RMIT University has invented recyclable ‘water batteries’ that won’t catch fire or explode. Lithium-ion energy storage dominates the market due to its technological maturity, but its suitability for large-scale grid energy storage is limited by safety concerns with the volatile materials inside. Lead researcher Distinguished Professor Tianyi Ma said their batteries were at the cutting edge of an emerging field of aqueous energy storage devices, with breakthroughs that significantly improve the technology’s performance and lifespan. “What ...

Focus on patient experience can improve diabetes care

2024-02-21
WASHINGTON—Health care providers who treat diabetes need to think beyond the clinical numbers, such as solely focusing on a person’s glucose goals. Taking the patient experience into account can improve the quality of care and facilitate attainment of treatment goals, according to a new position statement published in the Endocrine Society’s Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism. The position statement reflects the consensus of two virtual roundtables the Endocrine Society held in 2022. Participants ...

KIER’s success in the development of the world's top-level semi-transparent perovskite solar cells

KIER’s success in the development of the worlds top-level semi-transparent perovskite solar cells
2024-02-21
The Photovoltaics Research Department of the Korea Institute of Energy Research (hereafter KIER), working with the KIER Energy AI and Computational Science Lab, has achieved advancements in the stability and efficiency of semi-transparent perovskite solar cells. These cells have potential use in building windows and tandem solar cells*. The semi-transparent solar cells achieved a record-breaking efficiency of 21.68%, making them the most efficient amongst the perovskite solar cells using transparent electrodes in the world. Additionally, they showed ...

NIH grant to aid Rumbaugh’s biofilm dispersal research

NIH grant to aid Rumbaugh’s biofilm dispersal research
2024-02-21
Most chronic wound infections share one thing in common: the presence of biofilms, which are composed of many different microorganisms that congregate as a mass, usually on some type of surface such as a wound bed. Biofilms are thought to be associated with up to 80% of infections, and their ability to stick together makes the biofilm and infection exceptionally difficult to kill. To combat this health care challenge, researchers such as Kendra Rumbaugh, Ph.D., a professor in the Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center (TTUHSC) School of Medicine’s Department of Surgery, are pursuing biofilm dispersal agents such as ...

Study details toxic elements found in stranded whales, dolphins over 15 years

Study details toxic elements found in stranded whales, dolphins over 15 years
2024-02-21
Whales and dolphins get their nutrients and essential elements through their diet. While eating fish, squid, octopus, crustaceans and other marine mammals, they are also exposed to heavy metal contaminants. Elevated levels of toxins have been found in stranded dolphins and whales along the Southeastern Coast of the United States. Monitoring toxic contaminants in these stranded marine animals, which serve as important sentinels of environmental contamination, and whose health may be linked to human health, is vital. Yet, data remain sparse on how specific elements are distributed within an animal’s body, especially for many rarely encountered ...

Inaccurate pulse oximeter readings could limit transplants, heart pumps for Black patients with heart failure

2024-02-21
Racially biased readings of oxygen levels in the blood using pulse oximeters may further limit opportunities for Black patients with heart failure to receive potentially lifesaving treatments, such as heart pumps and transplants, a Michigan Medicine study finds. “This is especially important because we know that Black patients are already less likely to receive heart pumps or transplants compared to their white counterparts, and these inaccurate readings can further widen a disparity that must be addressed by our health care system,” said first author Scott W. Ketcham, M.D., a third year ...

An awkward family reunion: Sea monsters are our cousins

An awkward family reunion: Sea monsters are our cousins
2024-02-21
KANSAS CITY, MO—February 21, 2024—The sea lamprey, a 500-million-year-old animal with a sharp-toothed suction cup for a mouth, is the thing of nightmares. A new study from the Stowers Institute for Medical Research discovered that the hindbrain—the part of the brain controlling vital functions like blood pressure and heart rate—of both sea lampreys and humans is built using an extraordinarily similar molecular and genetic toolkit.  Research from the lab of Investigator Robb Krumlauf, Ph.D., published on February 20, 2024 in Nature Communications offers a glimpse into how the brains of ancient animals evolved. The team unexpectedly uncovered that ...

Highways through historically redlined areas likely cause air pollution disparities today

2024-02-21
As part of the New Deal, several governmental programs were created to expand homeownership through mortgages and loans. However, neighborhoods with primarily Black or immigrant communities often were rated “hazardous” for repayment under the discriminatory, “redlining” practice that restricted lending. Today, those same areas are exposed to more air pollution than other urban neighborhoods, and according to research published in ACS’ Environmental Science & Technology, the cause could ...

Mercury levels in tuna remain nearly unchanged since 1971, study says

2024-02-21
Tuna is one of the most popular seafoods worldwide. But this protein-rich fish can build up high levels of methylmercury from feeding on contaminated prey, like smaller fish or crustaceans. Despite efforts to reduce mercury emissions into the environment, researchers report in ACS’ Environmental Science & Technology Letters that levels in tuna appear to be unchanged since 1971. They warn that more aggressive emission reduction targets are needed to start nudging down tuna mercury levels. Environmental ...

Compounds in female ginseng could lead to new osteoporosis treatments

2024-02-21
With ever-increasing life expectancy comes the challenge of treating age-related disorders such as osteoporosis. Although there are effective drugs for treating this metabolic bone disease, they can be expensive and have side effects, limiting their availability to some people. In the search for alternative drug candidates, researchers reporting in ACS Central Science have discovered and fully replicated a compound from a botanical source, female ginseng, that had potent anti-osteoporotic activity in cellular tests. Osteoporosis and low bone mass impact 54 million American ...

Communities of color breathe Denver’s worst air

2024-02-21
History determines who gets to breathe fresh air, according to a new study published today in Environmental Science and Technology. The CIRES led-study found that historic, discriminatory lending practices known as redlining in the city are linked to inequities in air quality today. Alex Bradley, a fourth-year chemistry Ph.D. student in CIRES’ de Gouw group at the University of Colorado Boulder, used his background in chemistry coupled with an environmental justice lens to understand how pollution impacts communities of color in Denver.  What he discovered wasn’t ...

Japan versus UK: Impact of social camouflage on mental health in autistic adults

Japan versus UK: Impact of social camouflage on mental health in autistic adults
2024-02-21
As people with autism grow up, they face unique challenges. They find it difficult to deal with mental health issues. There is a big gap in understanding how pretending to fit in (known as social camouflage), cultural beliefs, and mental well-being are connected. This is especially true for non-Western countries like Japan. In societies that stress conformity, autistic individuals may feel more pressure to act non-autistic. This, in turn, affects their mental health. Not enough studies in Japan have investigated this concern, which leaves a crucial gap in our ...

Asian Fund for Cancer Research (AFCR) commends Dr. Yung-Chi Cheng's three decades of pioneering research and celebrates Yiviva's recent partnership with AstraZeneca China

Asian Fund for Cancer Research (AFCR) commends Dr. Yung-Chi Chengs three decades of pioneering research and celebrates Yivivas recent partnership with AstraZeneca China
2024-02-21
The Asian Fund for Cancer Research (AFCR) proudly recognizes the exceptional contributions of Dr. Yung-Chi Cheng, AFCR Scientific Advisory Board Member, and Henry Bronson Professor of Pharmacology and Medicine at Yale University. Dr. Cheng's unwavering commitment over the past thirty years has led to the establishment of Yiviva, a clinical-stage platform biotechnology company dedicated to developing transformative medicines targeting cancer and aging-related diseases. AFCR was the early champion behind Dr. Yung-Chi Cheng's pursuit of applying a systems biology approach ...

Teachers’ growth mindset appears more important than warmth

2024-02-21
PULLMAN, Wash. -- Students tend to like friendly teachers, but they like those who believe they can improve even more, new research indicates. Students in a study still responded positively to instructors described as being cold but who also had a growth mindset, meaning they felt students’ ability in a subject could improve by working hard and trying different strategies. The opposite was also true: more participants reacted negatively to a warm, smiling teacher when they stated a fixed mindset, which is a belief that innate abilities cannot be changed, such as someone being naturally good at math. “It's not enough to just be nice,” said lead author Makita ...

Older adults with a history of stroke at high risk of pandemic-induced depression

2024-02-21
Toronto, ON — A new longitudinal study from the University of Toronto highlights the substantial mental health toll of the COVID-19 pandemic on older adults with a history of stroke. Researchers examined a sample of over 500 older adults with a history of stroke from the Canadian Longitudinal Study on Aging, a large dataset of older Canadians. Their findings indicated high levels of depression in this population during the COVID-19 pandemic. “People who have experienced a stroke are already highly vulnerable to adverse mental health outcomes, such as depression,” said lead author Andie MacNeil, a research assistant at the University ...

Revealing what makes bacteria life-threatening

2024-02-21
Queensland researchers have discovered that a mutation allows some E. coli bacteria to cause severe disease in people while other bacteria are harmless, a finding that could help to combat antibiotic resistance. Professor Mark Schembri and Dr Nhu Nguyen from The University of Queensland’s Institute for Molecular Bioscience and Associate Professor Sumaira Hasnain from Mater Research found the mutation in the cellulose making machinery of E. coli bacteria. Professor Schembri said the mutation gives the affected E. coli bacteria the green light ...

Durham University scientists discover the real-life impacts of northern elephant seal bottleneck

2024-02-21
New research of northern elephant seals has revealed their reproductive and foraging success has been affected by a population bottleneck which nearly caused their extinction and could make them vulnerable as the environment changes in the future. The northern elephant seal is an iconic species living along the very accessible Pacific coastline of Mexico and North America, hauling out on beaches to breed. For much of the 19th century, they were hunted for the oil derived from their blubber. They were thought extinct after the last few that could be found were taken in 1892. Fortunately, around 20 had survived, and they made a remarkable comeback. Now less than 150 years later, ...

NIH study offers new clues into the causes of post-infectious ME/CFS

2024-02-21
In a detailed clinical study, researchers at the National Institutes of Health have found differences in the brains and immune systems of people with post-infectious myalgic encephalomyelitis/chronic fatigue syndrome (PI-ME/CFS). They also found distinct differences between men and women with the disease. The findings were published in Nature Communications. “People with ME/CFS have very real and disabling symptoms, but uncovering their biological basis has been extremely difficult,” said Walter Koroshetz, M.D., director of NIH’s National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS). “This in-depth study of a small group of people found ...

Weedy rice gets competitive boost from its wild neighbors

Weedy rice gets competitive boost from its wild neighbors
2024-02-21
Rice feeds the world. But a look-alike weed has many ways of getting ahead. Weedy rice is an agricultural pest with a global economic impact. It is an aggressive weed that outcompetes cultivated rice and causes billions of dollars in yield losses worldwide. In the U.S. alone, crop losses attributed to weedy rice could feed an additional 12 million people annually. A study from Washington University in St. Louis offers new insights into genetic changes that give weedy rice its edge over cultivated rice in tropical regions of the world. Writing in Nature Communications, researchers ...

Butterfly and moth genomes mostly unchanged despite 250 million years of evolution

Butterfly and moth genomes mostly  unchanged despite 250 million years of  evolution
2024-02-21
The most extensive analysis of its kind reveals how butterfly and moth chromosomes have remained largely unchanged since their last common ancestor over 250 million years ago. This stability exists despite the incredible diversity seen today in wing patterns, sizes, and caterpillar forms across over 160,000 species globally. Researchers from the Wellcome Sanger Institute and their collaborators at the University of Edinburgh analysed and compared over 200 high-quality chromosome-level genomes across butterflies and moths to better understand their evolutionary history. They further uncovered rare groups of species that broke these genetic norms ...

Hepatocellular carcinoma incidence and mortality in the USA by sex, age, and race: A nationwide analysis of two decades

Hepatocellular carcinoma incidence and mortality in the USA by sex, age, and race: A nationwide analysis of two decades
2024-02-21
Background and Aims Over the past two decades, there has been a significant increase in the incidence of primary liver cancer in the USA, with higher rates observed in men. Its burden increases with age and disproportionately affects men, with mortality rates three times higher in men than in women. The higher incidence in men can be partially attributed to a greater prevalence of risk factors such as alcohol abuse and chronic HBV and HCV infections. A recent study of the Surveillance Epidemiology and End Results (SEER) database showed rising incidence and mortality of liver cancer in the USA from 1975 to ...

AGA now recommends fecal microbiota transplant for the majority of recurrent C. diff patients

2024-02-21
Bethesda, MD (Feb. 21, 2024) — In the first comprehensive evidence-based guideline on the use of fecal microbiota-based therapies for gastrointestinal disease, the American Gastroenterological Association recommends fecal microbiota transplant (FMT) for most patients with recurrent Clostridioides difficile (C. diff) infection.   “Using fecal microbiota transplant, we take stool from a healthy donor and transfer it to the colon of the person with recurrent C. diff, restoring balance to their gut microbiome,” explains guideline author Dr. Anne Peery. “FMT is a safe and effective treatment with enough scientific ...

Why are fish getting smaller as waters warm? It’s not their gills, finds study led by UMass Amherst

Why are fish getting smaller as waters warm? It’s not their gills, finds study led by UMass Amherst
2024-02-21
February 21, 2024   Why Are Fish Getting Smaller as Waters Warm? It’s Not Their Gills, Finds Study Led by UMass Amherst Biologists find no link between fish size and gill surface area—study suggests that models underlying some projections of future fisheries yields need to be reconsidered   AMHERST, Mass. – A collaborative team of scientists led by the University of Massachusetts Amherst recently found that there is no physiological evidence supporting a leading theory— which involves the surface area of fish gills —as to why many fish species are ...

Can yoga effectively treat chronic back pain?

2024-02-21
New research published in the Journal of Orthopaedic Research suggests that the physical postures, breathing exercises, and mindfulness practices of yoga may benefit individuals with back pain. In the study, 10 women with and 11 without chronic low back pain underwent an 8‐session yoga program over 4 weeks, with the first session conducted in a clinic and the rest delivered with a tele‐approach. Women with chronic low back pain experienced a significant decrease in pain intensity, as assessed through a 10-point visual analog scale (an average ...

Do immigrant deaths at the border influence white and Latinx Americans’ belief in the American dream?

2024-02-21
The American dream narrative posits that anyone who works hard can become successful in the US, whereas the systemic racism narrative argues that the US is a racist country where minorities are systemically held back. A survey-based study in Analyses of Social Issues and Public Policy found that these narratives predict individuals’ support for the presidential candidacy of Donald Trump or Joe Biden, above and beyond more traditional political ideologies. In a follow-up experiment in which participants were confronted with news clips of immigrant deaths at the border, white individuals decreased their ...
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