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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

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Showing releases 201-225 out of 801.

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Public Release: 15-Jun-2015
Nature Geoscience
Small thunderstorms may add up to massive cyclones on Saturn
In a paper published today in the journal Nature Geoscience, atmospheric scientists at MIT propose a possible mechanism for Saturn's polar cyclones: over time, small, short-lived thunderstorms across the planet may build up angular momentum, or spin, within the atmosphere -- ultimately stirring up a massive and long-lasting vortex at the poles.
National Science Foundation

Contact: Abby Abazorius
abbya@mit.edu
617-253-2709
Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Public Release: 15-Jun-2015
Applied Physics Letters
Penn researchers develop a new type of gecko-like gripper
Researchers at the University of Pennsylvania are developing a new kind of gripper, motivated by the ability of animals like the gecko to grip and release surfaces. Like the gecko, the gripper has 'tunable adhesion,' meaning that, despite having no moving parts, its effective stickiness can be tuned from strong to weak. Unlike the gecko and other artificial imitators that rely on structures with complex shapes, the Penn team's gripper uses a simpler, two-material structure that is easier to mass-produce.
National Science Foundation, US Department of Education

Contact: Evan Lerner
elerner@upenn.edu
215-573-6604
University of Pennsylvania

Public Release: 15-Jun-2015
BMJ Open
Researchers correlate rheumatoid arthritis and giant cell arteritis with solar cycles
A rare collaboration of physicists and medical researchers finds a correlation between rheumatoid arthritis and giant cell arteritis and solar cycles.
National Institutes of Health, National Science Foundation, NASA, US Department of Energy

Contact: John Greenwald
jgreenwa@pppl.gov
609-243-2672
DOE/Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory

Public Release: 15-Jun-2015
Planta
Microbe mobilizes 'iron shield' to block arsenic uptake in rice
University of Delaware researchers have discovered a soil microbe that mobilizes an 'iron shield' to block the uptake of toxic arsenic in rice. The UD finding gives hope that a natural, low-cost solution -- a probiotic for rice plants -- may be in sight to protect this global food source from accumulating harmful levels of one of the deadliest poisons on the planet. Rice currently is a staple in the diet of more than half the world's population.
National Science Foundation

Contact: Andrea Boyle Tippett
aboyle@udel.edu
302-831-1421
University of Delaware

Public Release: 15-Jun-2015
Patent awarded to Kansas State University preclinical cancer detection test platform
A US patent has been awarded to a Kansas State University technology that quickly detects the early stages of cancer before physical symptoms ever appear. Results are produced in about 30 minutes and the technology has a 95 percent success rate at detecting cancer at stage one and beyond.
National Science Foundation, National Institutes of Health, Johnson Cancer Research Center at Kansas State University

Contact: Stefan Bossmann
sbossman@k-state.edu
785-532-6817
Kansas State University

Public Release: 15-Jun-2015
Nature Chemistry
Chemists find efficient, scalable way to synthesize potential brain-protecting compound
Chemists at The Scripps Research Institute have invented the first practical, scalable method for synthesizing jiadifenolide, a plant-derived molecule that may have powerful brain-protecting properties.
National Science Foundation, Amgen, Boehringer Ingelheim, Baxter Foundation, Bristol-Myers Squibb, Eli Lilly, Novartis, Sloan Foundation

Contact: Madeline McCurry-Schmidt
madms@scripps.edu
858-784-9254
Scripps Research Institute

Public Release: 15-Jun-2015
Nature Materials
Scientists are first to see elements transform at atomic scale
Chemists have witnessed atoms of one chemical element morph into another element for the first time ever. The isotope they studied -- iodine-125 -- is commonly used to treat cancer and this breakthrough unexpectedly revealed a possible new way to irradiate tumors more effectively.
National Science Foundation, US Department of Energy, European Research Council, Royal Society

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

Public Release: 15-Jun-2015
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
USF biologists: Biodiversity reduces human, wildlife diseases and crop pests
With infectious diseases increasing worldwide, the need to understand how and why disease outbreaks occur is becoming increasingly important. Looking for answers, a team of University of South Florida (USF) biologists and colleagues found broad evidence that supports the controversial 'dilution effect hypothesis,' which suggests that biodiversity limits outbreaks of disease among humans and wildlife.
National Science Foundation, National Institutes of Health, US Department of Agriculture, US Environmental Protection Agency

Contact: David Civitello
civitello@usf.edu
813-974-4694
University of South Florida (USF Health)

Public Release: 15-Jun-2015
Nature Climate Change
Genetic switch lets marine diatoms do less work at higher CO2
Rising CO2 lets diatoms return to their evolutionary roots, by skipping steps that concentrate CO2. Over time, the drifting algae adjust by slowing down their metabolism.
National Science Foundation, Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation

Contact: Hannah Hickey
hickeyh@uw.edu
206-543-2580
University of Washington

Public Release: 15-Jun-2015
Nature Nanotechnology
World's thinnest lightbulb -- graphene gets bright!
Led by James Hone's group at Columbia Engineering, a team of scientists from Columbia, SNU, and KRISS demonstrated -- for the first time -- an on-chip visible light source using graphene, an atomically thin and perfectly crystalline form of carbon, as a filament. They attached small strips of graphene to metal electrodes, suspended the strips above the substrate, and passed a current through the filaments to cause them to heat up. (Nature Nanotechnology AOP June 15)
National Science Foundation, Air Force Office of Scientific Research, Korea Research Institute of Standards and Science, National Research Foundation of Korea, National Research Foundation of Korea

Contact: Holly Evarts
holly.evarts@columbia.edu
347-453-7408
Columbia University School of Engineering and Applied Science

Public Release: 15-Jun-2015
Journal of Animal Ecology
Underground ants can't take the heat
According to a new study from Drexel University, underground species of army ants are much less tolerant of high temperatures than their aboveground relatives -- and that difference in thermal tolerance could mean that many climate change models lack a key element of how animal physiology could affect responses to changing environments.
National Science Foundation

Contact: Rachel Ewing
re39@drexel.edu
215-895-2614
Drexel University

Public Release: 15-Jun-2015
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
Why big dinosaurs steered clear of the tropics
A remarkably detailed picture of the climate and ecology during the Triassic Period explains why dinosaurs failed to establish dominance near the equator for 30 million years.
National Science Foundation, Richard Salomon Foundation, National Geographic Society Committee for Research & Exploration, University of California Museum of Paleontology, University of Utah, Grainger Foundation, Dyson Foundation, and others

Contact: Joe Rojas-Burke
joe.rojas@utah.edu
801-585-6861
University of Utah

Public Release: 12-Jun-2015
Science Express
Argonne scientists announce first room-temperature magnetic skyrmion bubbles
Researchers at UCLA and Argonne National Laboratory announced today a new method for creating magnetic skyrmion bubbles at room temperature. The bubbles, a physics phenomenon thought to be an option for more energy-efficient and compact electronics, can be created with simple equipment and common materials.
US Department of Energy, National Science Foundation

Contact: Louise Lerner
media@anl.gov
630-252-5526
DOE/Argonne National Laboratory

Public Release: 12-Jun-2015
PLOS ONE
Behavior matters: Redesigning the clinical trial
Clinical trials are used to test the latest drugs and treatments, but few of these trials track how human behavior influences the effectiveness of these therapeutics. In a new study, Caltech's Erik Snowberg suggests an approach to tracking such influences.
National Science Foundation

Contact: Deborah Williams-Hedges
debwms@caltech.edu
626-395-3227
California Institute of Technology

Public Release: 12-Jun-2015
Science
We are entering a 'golden age' of animal tracking
Animals wearing new tagging and tracking devices give a real-time look at their behavior and at the environmental health of the planet, say research associates at the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute in the June 12 issue of Science magazine.
NASA, National Science Foundation

Contact: Beth King
kingb@si.edu
202-633-4700 x28216
Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute

Public Release: 12-Jun-2015
Journal of Human Evolution
Stone tools from Jordan point to dawn of division of labor
Charcoal samples enable remarkably accurate estimates of 40,000 to 45,000 years ago for the earliest Upper Paleolithic stone tools in the Near East. The toolmakers appear to have achieved a division of labor that may have been part of an emerging pattern of more organized social structures.
National Science Foundation (Grant #102352), Leakey Foundation, Oxford College of Emory University, the Pierce Institute for rLeadership and Community Engagement, a Gregory-Rackley Career Development Award.

Contact: Carol Clark
carol.clark@emory.edu
404-727-0501
Emory Health Sciences

Public Release: 12-Jun-2015
Scientific Reports
TAML catalysts safely and effectively remove estrogenic compounds from wastewater
Catalysts created by Carnegie Mellon University chemist Terrence J. Collins effectively and safely remove a potent and dangerous endocrine disruptor from wastewater. In a paper published in Scientific Reports, Collins' research team and collaborators led by Brunel University London's Susan Jobling and Rak Kanda demonstrate that the catalysts could be a viable option for large-scale water treatment.
The Heinz Endowments, Swiss National Science Foundation, Carnegie Mellon's Steinbrenner Institute for Environmental Education and Research, National Science Foundation, UK Water Industry Research

Contact: Jocelyn Duffy
jhduffy@andrew.cmu.edu
412-268-9982
Carnegie Mellon University

Public Release: 11-Jun-2015
Current Biology
Virtual reality sheds new light on how we navigate in the dark
A series of immersive reality experiments has confirmed that the human brain's internal navigation system works in the same fashion as the grid cell system recently found in other mammals.
National Science Foundation, Office of Naval Research

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

Public Release: 11-Jun-2015
Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention
Comorbid conditions associated with worse lung cancer survival
Lung cancer patients with comorbid conditions such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, diabetes, or congestive heart failure had a higher risk of death than lung cancer patients without comorbid conditions.
Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute, Veterans Health Administration, Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services, UNMC College of Public Health, National Science Foundation, CDC Public Health Infrastructure

Contact: Lauren Riley
lauren.riley@aacr.org
215-446-7155
American Association for Cancer Research

Public Release: 11-Jun-2015
Science
Variations in atmospheric oxygen levels shaped Earth's climate through the ages
Variations in the amount of oxygen in Earth's atmosphere significantly altered global climate throughout the planet's history. Efforts to reconstruct past climates must include this previously overlooked factor, a new University of Michigan-led study concludes.
National Science Foundation/Sedimentary Geology and Paleobiology Program and Marine Geology and Geophysics Program

Contact: Jim Erickson
ericksn@umich.edu
734-647-1842
University of Michigan

Public Release: 11-Jun-2015
Science
Study examines 'joiners' who help make startups successful
Research highlighted this week in the journal Science analyzes a class of 'joiners,' employees who support the founders of startup companies. The joiners resemble founders in their willingness to take risks and their desire for the freedom of a startup, but there are important differences.
Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation, National Science Foundation

Contact: John Toon
jtoon@gatech.edu
404-894-6986
Georgia Institute of Technology

Public Release: 11-Jun-2015
Science
How the hawkmoth sees, hovers and tracks flowers in the dark
Using high-speed infrared cameras and robotic flowers, scientists have learned how the hawkmoth juggles the complex sensing and control challenges of seeing in the dark, hovering in mid-air and tracking moving flowers. The work shows that the creatures can slow their brains to improve vision under low-light conditions -- while continuing to perform demanding tasks.
National Science Foundation, Air Force Office of Scientific Research

Contact: John Toon
jtoon@gatech.edu
404-894-6986
Georgia Institute of Technology

Public Release: 11-Jun-2015
Neuron
Serotonin receptor is involved in eczema and other itch conditions
Scratching the itch of eczema, researchers have identified the serotonin receptor HTR7 as a key mediator of eczema and other forms of chronic itch. Eczema affects some 10 percent of the population and can involve intense, frequent itching and a flaming red rash. There is no cure and treatments are often not effective. The research, in mice, points to targets for new treatments and helps explain why itch can be a side effect of antidepressants.
National Institutes of Health, National Science Foundation

Contact: Kris Rebillot
krebillot@buckinstitute.org
415-209-2080
Buck Institute for Research on Aging

Public Release: 10-Jun-2015
Marine Pollution Bulletin
New tool better protects beachgoers from harmful bacteria levels
An international team, led by researchers at the University of Miami Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science, has developed a new, timelier method to identify harmful bacteria levels on recreational beaches. The new model provides beach managers with a better prediction tool to identify when closures are required to protect beachgoers from harmful contaminates in the water.
National Science Foundation

Contact: Diana Udel
dudel@rsmas.miami.edu
305-421-4704
University of Miami Rosenstiel School of Marine & Atmospheric Science

Public Release: 10-Jun-2015
Applied Optics
University of Cincinnati, industry partners develop low-cost, 'tunable' window tintings
Technology developed by the University of Cincinnati and industry partners can do something that neither blinds nor existing smart windows can do. This patent-pending research, supported by the National Science Foundation, will lead to low-cost window tinting which dynamically adapts for brightness, color temperatures and opacity (to provide for privacy while allowing light in).
National Science Foundation

Contact: M.B. Reilly
reillymb@ucmail.uc.edu
513-556-1824
University of Cincinnati

Showing releases 201-225 out of 801.

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