260 articles from MONDAY 31.8.2020

AstraZeneca's COVID-19 vaccine candidate begins late-stage U.S. study

Trial participants will receive either two doses of the experimental vaccine, dubbed AZD1222, four weeks apart, or a placebo, the company said. The trial is being conducted under U.S. government's Operation Warp Speed program, which aims to accelerate development, manufacturing and distribution of vaccines and treatments for COVID-19. U.S. President Donald Trump has said a vaccine for the novel...

How weather news impacts public transit ridership

Researchers found a correlation between words used in media coverage related to weather or air quality, and transit ridership. It's not enough yet to say that media coverage causes changes in ridership. But it's enough to explore what factors in to a person's decision to ride transit and whether that decision can be nudged.

Scientists show how brain flexibility emerges in infants

Cognitive flexibility, which refers to the brain's ability to switch between mental processes in response to external stimuli and different task demands, seems to begin developing during the first two years of life, which is much earlier than previously thought. Researchers used magnetic resonance imaging techniques to show the emergence of a functional flexible brain during early infancy.

To the choir: Forward-thinking faculty sharing innovations mostly among themselves

Surveys and network analyses of 192 STEM faculty at three universities revealed that frequent users of evidence-based instructional practices are far more likely to engage one another than colleagues less familiar with the practices. The finding suggests that faculty networks alone are not enough to disseminate and drive the adoption of evidence-based practices that could improve undergraduate...

Dodder uses the flowering signal of its host plant to flower

Researchers have investigated how the parasitic dodder Cuscuta australis controls flower formation. They showed that the parasite eavesdrops on the flowering signals of its host plants in order to activate its own flowering machinery. By synchronizing flowering with its host plant, the parasite makes sure that it can grow on its host long enough to produce the optimal amount of seeds.

Being a selfish jerk doesn't get you ahead: Study

Two studies provide empirical evidence to settle the question of whether being aggressively Machiavellian helps people get ahead. The studies concluded that being a jerk provides no advantage in career advancement. Any power boost disagreeable people get from being intimidating is offset by their poor interpersonal relationships, the studies concluded.

Genetic mutations may be linked to infertility, early menopause

A new study identifies a specific gene's previously unknown role in fertility. When the gene is missing in fruit flies, roundworms, zebrafish and mice, the animals are infertile or lose their fertility unusually early but appear otherwise healthy. Analyzing genetic data in people, the researchers found an association between mutations in this gene and early menopause.

Scientists reveal secret of material for promising infrared cameras

Researchers from the Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology and the RAS Institute for Theoretical and Applied Electromagnetics have discovered what makes vanadium dioxide films conduct electricity. Published in Physical Review B, their findings will enable thermal imaging devices with a sensitivity and reaction rate superior to those of the currently existing analogs.