245 articles from TUESDAY 12.5.2020

'Water wires' may play bigger role in cellular function

Each of our cells is surrounded by a complex membrane that functions as a biological border, letting ions and nutrients such as salt, potassium and sugar in and out. The guards are membrane proteins, which do the hard work of permitting or blocking the traffic of these molecules.

Silver nanocubes make point-of-care diagnostics easier to read

Engineers at Duke University have shown that nanosized silver cubes can make diagnostic tests that rely on fluorescence easier to read by making them more than 150 times brighter. Combined with an emerging point-of-care diagnostic platform already shown capable of detecting small traces of viruses and other biomarkers, the approach could allow such tests to become much cheaper and more widespread.

Ancient reptile had mammal-like tooth enamel

A new study by paleontologists shows that one type of ancient reptiles evolved a special type of tooth enamel, similar to that of mammals, with high resistance to wear and tear. The study is the first to report this kind of enamel in a fossil reptile.

Silver nanocubes make point-of-care diagnostics easier to read

Engineers have shown that nanosized silver cubes can make diagnostic tests that rely on fluorescence easier to read by making them more than 150 times brighter. Combined with an emerging point-of-care diagnostic platform already shown to be able to detect small traces of viruses and other biomarkers, the approach could allow such tests to become much cheaper and more widespread.

Powerful new AI technique detects and classifies galaxies in astronomy image data

Researchers have developed a powerful new computer program called Morpheus that can analyze astronomical image data pixel by pixel to identify and classify all of the galaxies and stars in large data sets from astronomy surveys. Morpheus is a deep-learning framework that incorporates a variety of artificial intelligence technologies developed for applications such as image and speech recognition.

New software supports decision-making for breeding

Researchers have developed an innovative software program for the simulation of breeding programs. The ''Modular Breeding Program Simulator'' (MoBPS) enables the simulation of complex breeding programs in animal and plant breeding and is designed to assist breeders in their everyday decisions. In addition to economic criteria in breeding, the research team strives for goals such as sustainability,...

How memory function could be preserved after brain injury

A new study examining the effect of the immune receptor known as Toll-like Receptor 4, or TLR4, on how memory functions in both the normal and injured brain has found vastly different cellular pathways contribute to the receptor's effects on excitability in the uninjured and injured brain. Further, the researchers found novel mechanisms for how TLR4 regulates memory function in the normal,...

Dogs can detect traces of gasoline down to one billionth of a teaspoon

Trained dogs can detect fire accelerants such as gasoline in quantities as small as one billionth of a teaspoon, according to new research by University of Alberta chemists. The study provides the lowest estimate of the limit of sensitivity of dogs' noses and has implications for arson investigations.