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  News From the National Science Foundation
The National Science Foundation (NSF) — For more information about NSF and its programs, visit www.nsf.gov

NSF Funded News

Key: Meeting M      Journal J      Funder F

Showing releases 1-25 out of 828.

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Public Release: 7-Jul-2015
PLOS ONE
Scientists develop free, online genetic research tool
For most genetic scientists, the lack of access to computer servers and programs capable of quickly handling vast amounts of data can hinder genetic advancements. Now, a group of scientists at the University of Missouri has introduced a game changer in the world of biological research. The online, free service, RNAMiner, has been developed to handle large datasets which could lead to faster results in the study of plant and animal genomics.
National Institutes of Health, National Science Foundation

Contact: Jeff Sossamon
sossamonj@missouri.edu
573-882-3346
University of Missouri-Columbia

Public Release: 7-Jul-2015
Privacy Enhancing Technologies Symposium
Proceedings on Privacy Enhancing Technologies
Fewer women than men are shown online ads related to high-paying jobs
Experiments by Carnegie Mellon University showed that significantly fewer women than men were shown online ads promising them help getting jobs paying more than $200,000, raising questions about the fairness of targeting ads online.
National Science Foundation

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

Public Release: 7-Jul-2015
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
Bats do it, dolphins do it -- now humans can do it, too
Bats have been using sonar to navigate and communicate for ages, and now humans can do the same, thanks to lightweight and efficient ultrasound microphones and loudspeakers developed by UC Berkeley physicists. The devices owe their flat frequency response to graphene, which makes a stiff and responsive diaphragm far superior to those in today's ultrasound receivers and transmitters. Biologists can even slap one on a bat to record its nightly ultrasonic conversations.
US Department of Energy, Office of Naval Research, National Science Foundation

Contact: Robert Sanders
rlsanders@berkeley.edu
510-643-6998
University of California - Berkeley

Public Release: 7-Jul-2015
NSF funds methane research with potential for greener energy, manufacturing
The National Science Foundation has awarded its most prestigious honor for young researchers to a new NYU Polytechnic School of Engineering faculty member who is trying to solve the difficult problem of controlling methane's carbon-hydrogen bonds at moderate temperatures -- a problem which, if solved, could lead to greener energy, improve the manufacture of commodities, chemicals, and pharmaceuticals, and perhaps even keep future intergalactic travelers healthy.
National Science Foundation

Contact: Kathleen Hamilton
kathleen.hamilton@nyu.edu
718-260-3792
New York University Polytechnic School of Engineering

Public Release: 7-Jul-2015
British Journal of Educational Technology
Smartphones may be detrimental to learning process
A yearlong study of first-time smartphone users by researchers at Rice University and the US Air Force found that users felt smartphones were actually detrimental to their ability to learn.
National Science Foundation

Contact: David Ruth
david@rice.edu
713-348-6327
Rice University

Public Release: 7-Jul-2015
Nature Communications
The next anti-tuberculosis drug may already be in your local pharmacy
Testing thousands of approved drugs, EPFL scientists have identified an unlikely anti-tuberculosis drug: the over-the-counter antacid lansoprazole (Prevacid).
Swiss National Science Foundation, German Federal Ministry of Research and Education

Contact: Nik Papageorgiou
n.papageorgiou@epfl.ch
41-216-932-105
Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne

Public Release: 6-Jul-2015
Nature Nanotechnology
Surfing a wake of light
For the first time, Harvard researchers have created wakes of light-like waves moving on a metallic surface, called surface plasmons, and demonstrated that they can be controlled and steered. The creation and control of surface plasmon wakes could lead to new types of plasmonic couplers and lenses that could create two-dimensional holograms or focus light at the nanoscale.
National Science Foundation, Air Force Office of Scientific Research

Contact: Leah Burrows
lburrows@seas.harvard.edu
617-496-1351
Harvard University

Public Release: 6-Jul-2015
Nature Medicine
Age-related cognitive decline tied to immune-system molecule
Researchers at UC San Francisco and Stanford School of Medicine have shown that a blood-borne molecule that increases in abundance as we age blocks regeneration of brain cells and promotes cognitive decline.
California Institute for Regenerative Medicine, National Science Foundation, US Department of Veterans Affairs, NIH/National Institute on Aging, Sandler Foundation, Marc and Lynne Benioff, UCSF Clinical and Translational Science Institute

Contact: Pete Farley
peter.farley@ucsf.edu
415-502-4608
University of California - San Francisco

Public Release: 5-Jul-2015
Cell Reports
How the mammoth got its wool: Genetic changes are identified
Evolutionary change in a gene resurrected in the lab from the extinct woolly mammoth altered the gene's temperature sensitivity and likely was part of a suite of adaptations that allowed the mammoth to survive in harsh arctic environments, new research reveals.
National Science Foundation

Contact: Barbara K. Kennedy
science@psu.edu
814-863-4682
Penn State

Public Release: 3-Jul-2015
Nature Communications
Old World monkey had tiny, complex brain
The brain hidden inside the oldest known Old World monkey skull has been visualized for the first time. The ancient monkey, known as Victoriapithecus, first made headlines in 1997 when its 15 million-year-old skull was discovered on an island in Kenya's Lake Victoria. Now, X-ray imaging reveals that the creature's brain was tiny but surprisingly wrinkled and complex. The findings suggest that brain complexity can evolve before brain size in the primate family tree.
Max Planck Society, University College London, National Science Foundation

Contact: Robin Ann Smith
ras10@duke.edu
919-681-8057
Duke University

Public Release: 2-Jul-2015
Journal of Materials Chemistry C
New technology using silver may hold key to electronics advances
Engineers have invented a way to fabricate silver, a highly conductive metal, for printed electronics that are produced at room temperature. There may be broad applications in microelectronics, sensors, energy devices, low emissivity coatings and even transparent displays.
National Science Foundation

Contact: Chih-hung Chang
changch@che.orst.edu
541-737-8548
Oregon State University

Public Release: 2-Jul-2015
Cell Reports
First comprehensive analysis of the woolly mammoth genome completed
The first comprehensive analysis of the woolly mammoth genome reveals extensive genetic changes that allowed mammoths to adapt to life in the arctic. Newly-identified mammoth genes played roles in skin and hair development, fat metabolism, insulin signaling and numerous other traits -- even physical ones such as skull shape, small ears and short tails. As a test of function, a mammoth gene involved in temperature sensation was resurrected in the laboratory and its protein product characterized.
National Science Foundation

Contact: Kevin Jiang
kevin.jiang@uchospitals.edu
773-795-5227
University of Chicago Medical Center

Public Release: 2-Jul-2015
International consortium to study plant fertility evolution
Taking advantage of recent research progress and advanced gene sequencing technology, Brown University will join a consortium of European researchers for a three-year, $2.9 million study of how fertilization has evolved in flowering plants. A goal is to improve crop yields.
National Science Foundation

Contact: David Orenstein
david_orenstein@brown.edu
401-863-1862
Brown University

Public Release: 2-Jul-2015
Advanced Functional Materials
Elastic gel to heal wounds
A team of bioengineers at Brigham and Women's Hospital has developed a new protein-based gel that, when exposed to light, mimics many of the properties of elastic tissue, such as skin and blood vessels. In a paper published in Advanced Functional Materials, the research team reports on the new material's key properties, many of which can be finely tuned, and on the results of using the material in preclinical models of wound healing.
National Institutes of Health, National Science Foundation

Contact: Haley Bridger
hbridger@partners.org
617-525-6383
Brigham and Women's Hospital

Public Release: 2-Jul-2015
Science
Why the seahorse's tail is square
Why is the seahorse's tail square? An international team of researchers has found the answer and it could lead to building better robots and medical devices. In a nutshell, a tail made of square, overlapping segments makes for better armor than a cylindrical tail. It's also better at gripping and grasping. Researchers describe their findings in the July 3 issue of Science.
Air Force Office of Scientific Research, National Science Foundation, Belgian Agency for Innovation by Science and Technology, Oregon State University, Clemson University

Contact: Ioana Patringenaru
ipatrin@eng.ucsd.edu
858-822-0899
University of California - San Diego

Public Release: 2-Jul-2015
Science
Oregon experiments open window on landscape formation
University of Oregon geologists have seen ridges and valleys form in real time and -- even though the work was a fast-forwarded operation done in a laboratory setting -- they now have an idea of how climate change may impact landscapes.
National Science Foundation

Contact: Jim Barlow
jebarlow@uoregon.edu
541-346-3481
University of Oregon

Public Release: 2-Jul-2015
Science
Tough tail of a seahorse may provide robotic solutions
One of the ocean's oddest little creatures, the seahorse, is providing inspiration for robotics researchers as they learn from nature how to build robots that have capabilities sometimes at odds with one another -- flexible, but also tough and strong. Their findings may soon help create technology that offers new approaches to surgery, search and rescue missions or industrial applications.
National Science Foundation, Air Force Office of Scientific Research, Agency for Innovation by Science and Technology

Contact: Ross Hatton
ross.hatton@oregonstate.edu
Oregon State University

Public Release: 1-Jul-2015
Soil Science Society of America Journal
A tale of 2 (soil) cities
Recent work showed that long-term differences in soil use and management influence not only the sizes and numbers of soil aggregates, but also what the pores inside them will look like.
US Department of Agriculture, National Science Foundation, Kellogg Biological Station, Michigan State University

Contact: Susan Fisk
sfisk@sciencesocieties.org
608-273-8091
American Society of Agronomy

Public Release: 1-Jul-2015
Astrophysical Journal Letters
We're not alone -- but the universe may be less crowded than we think
There may be far fewer galaxies further out in the universe then might be expected, according to a new study led by Michigan State University.
National Science Foundation, NASA

Contact: Layne Cameron
layne.cameron@cabs.msu.edu
517-355-2282
Michigan State University

Public Release: 1-Jul-2015
Water Resources Research
Researcher discovers groundwater modeling breakthrough
A newly discovered equation is expected to greatly improve the reliability and functionality for hundreds of important water models used by everyone from irrigators and city planners to climate scientists and botanists -- and trigger a new surge in data collection.
National Science Foundation, EPSCoR

Contact: Fred Ogden
fogden@uwyo.edu
307-766-6171
University of Wyoming

Public Release: 1-Jul-2015
Optics Express
Ultra-stable JILA microscopy technique tracks tiny objects for hours
JILA researchers have designed a microscope instrument so stable that it can accurately measure the 3-D movement of individual molecules over many hours -- hundreds of times longer than the current limit measured in seconds. The technology was designed to track the machinery of biological cells, down to the tiniest bits of DNA, a single 'base pair' of nucleotides among the 3 billion of these chemical units in human genes. But the instrument could be useful well beyond biology, biochemistry and biophysics, perhaps in manufacturing.
National Science Foundation, NIST

Contact: Laura Ost
laura.ost@nist.gov
303-497-4880
National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST)

Public Release: 1-Jul-2015
PLOS ONE
Dagger-like canines of saber-toothed cats took years to grow
The fearsome teeth of the saber-toothed cat Smilodon fatalis fully emerged at a later age than those of modern big cats, but grew at a rate about double that of their living relatives. The findings, for the first time, provide specific ages for developmental dental events in Smilodon. The eruption rate of the cat's permanent upper canines was a speedy six millimeters per month, but the teeth weren't fully developed until three years of age.
Society of Vertebrate Paleontology, University of California-Berkeley's Department of Integrative Biology, American Museum of Natural History's Theodore Roosevelt Grant, National Science Foundation

Contact: Kendra Snyder
ksnyder@amnh.org
212-496-3419
American Museum of Natural History

Public Release: 30-Jun-2015
Environmental Science & Technology Letters
New study identifies organic compounds of potential concern in fracking fluids
A new University of Colorado Boulder framework used to screen hundreds of organic chemical compounds used in hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, shows that 15 may be of concern as groundwater contaminants based on their toxicity, mobility, persistence and frequency of use.
National Science Foundation

Contact: Joseph Ryan
joseph.ryan@colorado.edu
303-492-0772
University of Colorado at Boulder

Public Release: 30-Jun-2015
Physical Review D
New model of cosmic stickiness favors 'Big Rip' demise of universe
Vanderbilt University mathematician Marcelo Disconzi, working with physicists Robert Scherrer and Tom Kephart, has come up with a new approach to calculate cosmic viscosity and the formulation favors the 'Big Rip' scenario for the end of the universe.
National Science Foundation, US Department of Energy

Contact: David Salisbury
david.salisbury@vanderbilt.edu
615-343-6803
Vanderbilt University

Public Release: 30-Jun-2015
A win-win-win-win
With $1.5 million in NSF funding, a group of researchers will study the effects of a novel way of eradicating schistosomiasis.
National Science Foundation

Contact: Sonia Fernandez
sonia.fernandez@ucsb.edu
805-893-4765
University of California - Santa Barbara

Showing releases 1-25 out of 828.

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