188 articles from TUESDAY 27.9.2022

Researchers in Puerto Rico struggle to adapt in the aftermath of Hurricane Fiona

Three days after Hurricane Fiona tore its way through Puerto Rico, Ileana Rodríguez-Velez arrived at her laboratory, which had lost power, not knowing what to expect. A chemist at the University of Puerto Rico (UPR), Humacao, Rodríguez-Velez opened a refrigerator that stores the samples of rare plants her lab studies for their potential medical uses. The inside was warm, and most of the...

Researchers discover method to control carcinogenic formaldehyde release from wood in the home

New research, led jointly by the University of Massachusetts Amherst and the University of North Texas, advances our understanding of how the wood in our homes and offices can release formaldehyde, a potent carcinogen, at levels that can exceed certain health limits. The findings, published recently in Green Chemistry, promise to advance public health. Their solution, for which the team has filed...

Scientists bring the fusion energy that lights the sun and stars closer to reality on Earth

Physicists at the U.S. Department of Energy's (DOE) Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory (PPPL) have proposed the source of the sudden and puzzling collapse of heat that precedes disruptions that can damage doughnut-shaped tokamak fusion facilities. Coping with the source could overcome one of the most critical challenges that future fusion facilities will face and bring closer to reality the...

Researchers discover new predator damaging our ecosystems

For Arizona State University's Ph.D. recent graduate Julie Bethany Rakes, it all started as a failed experiment that ended up being an impactful discovery for the microbiology community. Recently in Nature Communications, Rakes and Regents' Professor Ferran Garcia-Pichel reported on a new bacterium that preys on soil cyanobacteria in biocrusts. In this publication, they describe the newly...

Big COVID-19 waves may be coming, new Omicron strains suggest

Nearly 3 years into the pandemic, SARS-CoV-2 faces a formidable challenge: finding new ways around the immunity humans have built up through vaccines and countless infections. Worrisome new data show it is up to the challenge. Several new and highly immune-evasive strains of the virus have caught scientists’ attention in recent weeks; one or more may well cause big, new COVID-19 waves...

How the false rumor of a Chinese coup went viral

Hi, and welcome back to China Report! If you are on Twitter and follow news about China, you likely have heard a pretty wild rumor recently: that President Xi Jinping was under house arrest and that there was about to be a major power grab in the country. First of all, let me be very clear: this report is false and should not be taken seriously. No credible sources on China have bought it....

Researchers unlock a new method for testing protein-based drugs

New Jersey Institute of Technology (NJIT) researchers have unveiled a new lab technique they say represents a "paradigm shift" in how pharmaceutical laboratories test and produce new protein-based drugs, such as therapeutic monoclonal antibodies being developed to treat a variety of diseases, from cancers to infectious diseases.

Climate Change is Helping to Rapidly Turbocharge Storms Like Hurricane Ian

Hurricane Ian is quickly gaining monstrous strength as it moves over oceans partly heated up by climate change, just like 30 other Atlantic tropical storms since 2017 that became much more powerful in less than a day. As the world warms, this turbo-charging of storms is likely to become even more frequent, scientists say. After getting 67% stronger in less than 22 hours from Monday to Tuesday,...

Researchers reconstruct the genome of the common ancestor of all mammals

Every modern mammal, from a platypus to a blue whale, is descended from a common ancestor that lived about 180 million years ago. We don't know a great deal about this animal, but the organization of its genome has now been computationally reconstructed by an international team of researchers. The work is published Sept. 30 in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Quantum effects in memristive devices

At the nanoscale, the laws of classical physics suddenly become inadequate to explain the behavior of matter. It is precisely at this juncture that quantum theory comes into play, effectively describing the physical phenomena characteristic of the atomic and subatomic world. Thanks to the different behavior of matter on these length and energy scales, it is possible to develop new materials,...

Determining how and why cells make decisions

Cells are constantly making decisions that lead to differentiation. For instance, cells in an embryo make a series of decisions that determine whether they will become neurons in some cases and muscle cells in others. How do cells make these decisions?

Fasting-mimicking diet reduces signs of dementia in mice

Cycles of a diet that mimics fasting appear to reduce signs of Alzheimer's in mice genetically engineered to develop the illness, according to a new study. Short cycles of a low-calorie diet that replicates fasting appeared to reduce inflammation and delay cognitive decline in mouse models of Alzheimer's disease; initial data indicates diet's safety in Alzheimer's patients.

Gas Companies Are Promoting Hydrogen to Heat Homes. But the Science Isn’t on Their Side

National Grid’s green energy plans look like a carbon-free utopia. In an animation presented as part of the Climate Week NYC last week, the utility—which serves New York and Massachusetts—showed how wind farms off the shore of Long Island would be able to power facilities to produce hydrogen, which could then provide energy for ships, trucks, and aircraft, and back up regional...