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Key: Meeting Journal Funder
Public Release: 27-Nov-2014
Science
Single-atom gold catalysts may offer path to low-cost production of fuel and chemicals
New catalysts designed and investigated by Tufts engineering researchers and collaborators have potential to greatly reduce processing costs in future fuels like hydrogen. The catalysts are composed of a unique structure of single gold atoms bound by oxygen to sodium or potassium atoms, supported on non-reactive silica materials. They demonstrate comparable activity and stability with catalysts comprising precious metal nanoparticles on rare earth and other reducible oxide supports when used in producing highly purified hydrogen.
US Department of Energy

Contact: Kim Thurler
kim.thurler@tufts.edu
617-627-3175
Tufts University

Public Release: 27-Nov-2014
Cell Death & Disease
Stroke damage mechanism identified
Researchers have discovered a mechanism linked to the brain damage often suffered by stroke victims -- and are now searching for drugs to block it.
Royal Society, Alzheimer's Research UK, Natural Science Foundation of China, National Basic Research Program of China

Contact: Chris Bunting
c.j.bunting@leeds.ac.uk
44-011-334-32049
University of Leeds

Public Release: 27-Nov-2014
Cell Reports
Fragile X study offers hope of new autism treatment
Researchers at the University of Edinburgh and McGill University have identified a chemical pathway that goes awry in the brains of Fragile X patients. A drug that targets this pathway reverses behavioral symptoms in mice and offers hope of new treatments for people with this common form of inherited autism.

Contact: Jen Middleton
jen.middleton@ed.ac.uk
44-779-564-0662
University of Edinburgh

Public Release: 27-Nov-2014
Science
Secret of tetanus toxicity offers new way to treat motor neuron disease
The way that tetanus neurotoxin enters nerve cells has been discovered by UCL scientists, who showed that this process can be blocked, offering a potential therapeutic intervention for tetanus. This newly-discovered pathway could be exploited to deliver therapies to the nervous system, opening up a whole new way to treat neurological disorders such as motor neuron disease and peripheral neuropathies.
Medical Research Council, Cancer Research UK

Contact: Siobhan Pipa
siobhan.pipa@ucl.ac.uk
44-207-679-9041
University College London

Public Release: 26-Nov-2014
Nature Communications
TGen-Luxembourg scientific team conducts unprecedented analysis of microbial ecosystem
An international team of scientists from the Translational Genomics Research Institute and The Luxembourg Centre for Systems Biomedicine have completed a first-of-its-kind microbial analysis of a biological waste water treatment plant that has broad implications for protecting the environment, energy recovery and human health. The study, published Nov. 26 in the scientific journal Nature Communications, describes in unprecedented detail the complex relationships within a model ecosystem.

Contact: Steve Yozwiak
syozwiak@tgen.org
602-343-8704
The Translational Genomics Research Institute

Public Release: 26-Nov-2014
Nature
NASA's Van Allen Probes spot an impenetrable barrier in space
Two donuts of seething radiation that surround Earth, called the Van Allen radiation belts, have been found to contain a nearly impenetrable barrier that prevents the fastest, most energetic electrons from reaching Earth.
NASA

Contact: Susan Hendrix
Susan.m.hendrix@nasa.gov
301-286-7745
NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center

Public Release: 26-Nov-2014
The Electricity Journal
Matched 'hybrid' systems may hold key to wider use of renewable energy
The use of renewable energy in the United States could take a significant leap forward with improved storage technologies or more efforts to 'match' different forms of alternative energy systems that provide an overall more steady flow of electricity, researchers say in a new report.

Contact: Joshua Merritt
merrittj@oregonstate.edu
Oregon State University

Public Release: 26-Nov-2014
Physical Review Letters
UNL study details laser pulse effects on electron behavior
Paper should help laser physicists 'see' how electrons make atomic and molecular transitions.

Contact: Anthony Starace
astarace@unl.edu
University of Nebraska-Lincoln

Public Release: 26-Nov-2014
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
Copper on the brain at rest
A new study by Berkeley Lab researchers has shown that proper copper levels are essential to the health of the brain at rest.
National Institutes of Health and Howard Hughes Medical Institute

Contact: Lynn Yarris
lcyarris@lbl.gov
510-486-5375
DOE/Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory

Public Release: 26-Nov-2014
Advances in Space Research
Process converts human waste into rocket fuel
Buck Rogers surely couldn't have seen this one coming, but at NASA's request, University of Florida researchers have figured out how to turn human waste -- yes, that kind -- into rocket fuel.

Contact: Pratap Pullammanappallil
pcpratap@ufl.edu
352-392-1864 x203
University of Florida

Public Release: 26-Nov-2014
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
Particles, waves and ants
Particles or waves traveling through disordered media are scattered at small impurities. Surprisingly, the density of these impurities does not affect the overall dwell time the particle -- or wave -- spends inside the medium. This remarkable finding applies not only to particles and waves, but also to crawling ants or drunken sailors hitting streetlamps.

Contact: Florian Aigner
florian.aigner@tuwien.ac.at
43-158-801-41027
Vienna University of Technology

Public Release: 26-Nov-2014
Nature
Protons fuel graphene prospects
Graphene, impermeable to all gases and liquids, can easily allow protons to pass through it, University of Manchester researchers have found.

Contact: Daniel Cochlin
daniel.cochlin@manchester.ac.uk
44-161-275-8382
University of Manchester

Public Release: 26-Nov-2014
5th International GOCE User Workshop
Geophysical Research Letters
First harvest of research based on the final GOCE gravity model
Just four months after the final data package from ESA's GOCE satellite mission was delivered, researchers are laying out a rich harvest of scientific results at the 5th International GOCE User Workshop in Paris. The GOCE Gravity Consortium, coordinated by the Technische Universität München, produced all of the mission's data products. On this basis, studies in geophysics, geology, ocean circulation, climate change, and civil engineering are sharpening the picture of our dynamic planet.
European Space Agency

Contact: Patrick Regan
patrick.regan@tum.de
49-162-427-9876
Technische Universitaet Muenchen

Public Release: 26-Nov-2014
Optics Express
Global quantum communications -- no longer the stuff of fiction?
Neither quantum computers nor quantum cryptography will become prevalent technologies without memory systems able to manipulate quantum information easily and effectively. The Faculty of Physics at the University of Warsaw has recently made inroads into popularizing quantum information technologies by creating an atomic memory with outstanding parameters and an extremely simple construction.
Polish National Research Centre

Contact: Dr. Wojciech Wasilewski
wojciech.wasilewski@fuw.edu.pl
Faculty of Physics University of Warsaw

Public Release: 26-Nov-2014
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
Glassy protein solution may cause eyesight deterioration
Long-sightedness caused by age could be due to proteins in the lens of the eye that are converted from a fluid solution to a solid, glassy state. This has been shown in a study by researchers from institutions including Lund University.

Contact: Anna Stradner
anna.stradner@fkem1.lu.se
46-462-228-214
Lund University

Public Release: 26-Nov-2014
Chinese Science Bulletin
Young scientist discovers new method to achieve ultra-narrow laser linewidth
Chinese researchers have discovered a new method to highly compress laser linewidth based on Rayleigh backscattering.
National Natural Science Foundation of China

Contact: Tao Zhu
zhutao@cqu.edu.cn
Science China Press

Public Release: 26-Nov-2014
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
Classical enzymatic theory revised by including water motions
The main focus of enzymology lies on enzymes themselves, whereas the role of water motions in mediating the biological reaction is often left aside owing to the complex molecular behavior. The groups of Martina Havenith and Irit Sagi revised the classical enzymatic steady state theory by including long-lasting protein-water coupled motions into models of functional catalysis.
German Research Foundation

Contact: Martina Havenith-Newen
Martina.Havenith@rub.de
49-234-322-4249
Ruhr-University Bochum

Public Release: 26-Nov-2014
Physical Review Letters
The mysterious 'action at a distance' between liquid containers
For several years, it has been known that superfluid helium housed in reservoirs located next to each other acts collectively, even when the channels connecting the reservoirs are too narrow and too long to allow for substantial flow. A new theoretical model reveals that the phenomenon of mysterious communication 'at a distance' between fluid reservoirs is much more common than previously thought.

Contact: Anna Maciołek
maciolek@is.mpg.de
49-711-689-1903
Institute of Physical Chemistry of the Polish Academy of Sciences

Public Release: 26-Nov-2014
Nature
Shaping the future of energy storage with conductive clay
Materials scientists from Drexel University's College of Engineering invented the clay, which is both highly conductive and can easily be molded into a variety of shapes and sizes. It represents a turn away from the rather complicated and costly processing -- currently used to make materials for lithium-ion batteries and supercapacitors -- and toward one that looks a bit like rolling out cookie dough with results that are even sweeter from an energy storage standpoint.
National Science Foundation, US Department of Energy

Contact: Britt Faulstick
bef29@drexel.edu
215-895-2617
Drexel University

Public Release: 26-Nov-2014
Nature Communications
Van der Waals force re-measured
Van der Waals forces act like a sort of quantum glue on all types of matter. Scientists from Forschungszentrum Jülich experimentally determined for the first time all of the key details of how strongly the single molecules bind to a surface. They demonstrated that the forces do not just increase with molecular size, but that they even grow disproportionately fast. Their findings could help to improve simulation methods for chemistry, physics, biology, and materials science.

Contact: Tobias Schloesser
t.schloesser@fz-juelich.de
49-246-161-4771
Forschungszentrum Juelich

Public Release: 26-Nov-2014
PLOS ONE
Carnegie Mellon researchers identify brain regions that encode words, grammar, story
Carnegie Mellon University scientists have produced the first integrated computational model of reading, identifying which parts of the brain are responsible for such sub-processes as parsing sentences, determining the meaning of words and understanding relationships between characters. They based their results on brain scan of people reading a Harry Potter book.
National Science Foundation, NIH/National Institute of Child Health and Human Development

Contact: Byron Spice
bspice@cs.cmu.edu
412-268-9068
Carnegie Mellon University

Public Release: 26-Nov-2014
Nature
Using supermassive black holes to measure cosmic distances
One of the major problems in astronomy is measuring very large distances in the universe. The current most common methods measure relative distances, but now research from the Niels Bohr Institute demonstrates that precise distances can be measured using supermassive black holes. The results are published in the scientific journal, Nature.

Contact: Gertie Skaarup
skaarup@nbi.dk
45-28-75-06-20
University of Copenhagen - Niels Bohr Institute

Public Release: 26-Nov-2014
Nature
'Eye of Sauron' provides new way of measuring distances to galaxies
A team of scientists, led by Dr. Sebastian Hoenig from the University of Southampton, have developed a new way of measuring precise distances to galaxies tens of millions of light years away.

Contact: Glenn Harris
G.Harris@soton.ac.uk
44-023-805-93212
University of Southampton

Public Release: 26-Nov-2014
A colorful gathering of middle-aged stars
The MPG/ESO 2.2-meter telescope at ESO's La Silla Observatory in Chile has captured a richly colorful view of the bright star cluster NGC 3532. Some of the stars still shine with a hot bluish color, but many of the more massive ones have become red giants and glow with a rich orange hue.

Contact: Richard Hook
rhook@eso.org
49-893-200-6655
ESO

Public Release: 26-Nov-2014
Nature
Stanford engineers invent high-tech mirror to beam heat away from buildings into space
Stanford engineers have invented a material designed to help cool buildings. The material reflects incoming sunlight, and it sends heat from inside the structure directly into space as infrared radiation.

Contact: Tom Abate
tabate@stanford.edu
650-736-2245
Stanford School of Engineering