109 articles from FRIDAY 2.6.2023

EPA decision to tighten oversight of gene-edited crops draws mixed response

When the CRISPR gene editor landed in U.S. plant science labs a decade ago, allowing researchers to tweak a crop’s own DNA instead of pasting in foreign genes, hopes rose that it would pave the way for looser regulation of genetically modified crops. Last year, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) gave plant scientists much of their wish, exempting certain gene-edited changes to...

Biden’s plan to tap former North Carolina health chief as CDC director wins praise

Public health advocates today applauded the news that President Joe Biden intends to name Mandy Cohen, a physician and public health expert with broad government experience, to lead the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Biden will appoint Cohen by the end of the month to replace current CDC Director Rochelle Walensky, who will step down on 30 June,...

AI software can provide 'roadmap' for biological discoveries

Predicting a protein's location within a cell can help researchers unlock a plethora of biological information that's critical for developing future scientific discoveries related to drug development and treating diseases like epilepsy. That's because proteins are the body's "workhorses," largely responsible for most cellular functions.

Improving fluid simulations with embedded neural networks

While neural networks can help to improve the accuracy of fluid flow simulations, new research shows how their accuracy is limited unless the right approach is taken. By embedding fluid properties into neural networks, simulation accuracy can improve by orders of magnitude.

Predicting the composition of a steel alloy

Producing energy on Earth through nuclear fusion, the type of reaction that powers the sun, has proven to be a major challenge. The extreme conditions needed for such a reaction require the walls of a nuclear fusion device to be made of a material with a particular set of mechanical properties, including being able to withstand incredibly high temperatures and be shock- and corrosion-resistant....

Better understanding the bonds between carbon group elements

The bonds between clusters of elements in the fourteenth group of the periodic table are known to be fickle. Ranging from the nonmetal carbon, to the metalloids silicon and germanium, to the metals tin and lead, all these elements share the same configuration of valence electrons—electrons in their atoms' outermost energy level.

Examining domain walls in magnetic nanowires

Magnetic domains walls are known to be a source of electrical resistance due to the difficulty for transport electron spins to follow their magnetic texture. This phenomenon holds potential for utilization in spintronic devices, where the electrical resistance can vary based on the presence or absence of a domain wall.

School closings during pandemic affected parents' work schedules, finds German study

A new study shows that the closing of education and childcare facilities in Germany during the coronavirus pandemic actually had an impact on parents' employment, as the opening of facilities led to a rebound in their work hours. For example, parents whose children had at least partial access to care or schooling in attendance worked about 1.5 to 2 hours more per week than parents whose children...

Buckle up: A new class of materials is here

Usually, the two characterizations of a material are mutually exclusive: something is either stiff, or it can absorb vibrations well—but rarely both. However, if we could make materials that are both stiff and good at absorbing vibrations, there would be a whole host of potential applications, from design at the nanoscale to aerospace engineering.

Examining the propagation of ultrasonic waves through liquids containing encapsulated bubbles

Scientists from the University of Tsukuba obtained a new theoretical equation for the propagation of ultrasonic waves through liquids containing encapsulated bubbles. They found that including the compressibility of the bubble shell was vital for accurately predicting the behavior of sound waves. This work may lead to improved resolution of ultrasound imaging based on the development of improved...

Speaking up for the annoying fruit fly

Fruit flies can be truly annoying when they are buzzing around your living room or landing in your wine. But we have much to thank these tiny nuisances for—they revolutionized biological and medical science.