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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 201-225 out of 838.

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Public Release: 18-May-2015
Nature Geoscience
OU geologist collaborates on study to determine mechanism associated with fault weakening
A University of Oklahoma structural geologist and collaborators are studying earthquake instability and the mechanisms associated with fault weakening during slip. The mechanism of this weakening is central to understanding earthquake sliding.
National Science Foundation

Contact: Jana Smith
jana.smith@ou.edu
405-325-1322
University of Oklahoma

Public Release: 18-May-2015
Psychological Science
Imagination beats practice in boosting visual search performance
Practice may not make perfect, but visualization might. New research shows that people who imagined a visual target before having to pick it out of a group of distracting items were faster at finding the target than those who did an actual practice run beforehand. The findings are published in Psychological Science, a journal of the Association for Psychological Science.
National Institutes of Health, National Science Foundation

Contact: Anna Mikulak
amikulak@psychologicalscience.org
202-293-9300
Association for Psychological Science

Public Release: 18-May-2015
Cyberheart research begins with virtual models, mathematics and NSF support
The NSF is supporting the early development of medical and cyber-physical systems that fuse software and hardware and go beyond today's pacemakers. Rochester Institute of Technology professor Elizabeth Cherry is on the multidisciplinary team, spanning seven universities and centers, developing the 'Cyberheart' platform for virtual, patient-specific human heart models and associated device therapies.
National Science Foundation

Contact: Susan Gawlowicz
smguns@rit.edu
585-475-5061
Rochester Institute of Technology

Public Release: 18-May-2015
Advanced Optical Materials
Penn researchers develop liquid-crystal-based compound lenses that work like insect eyes
Researchers have shown how liquid crystals can be employed to create compound lenses similar to those found in nature. Taking advantage of the geometry in which these liquid crystals like to arrange themselves, the researchers are able to grow compound lenses with controllable sizes.
National Science Foundation, US Department of Education, Simons Foundation

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

Public Release: 18-May-2015
Ecology Letters
Chronic illness causes less harm when carnivores cooperate
Gray wolves in Yellowstone National Park have given researchers the first scientific evidence from wild mammals that living in a group can lessen the impacts of a chronic disease. The research also is one of the first studies to measure the costs of infected non-human individuals of any species on members of their group.
US Geological Survey, National Park Service, National Science Foundation

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

Public Release: 18-May-2015
Nature Climate Change
US West's power grid must be prepared for impacts of climate change
Arizona State University researchers say in coming decades a changing climate will pose challenges to operations of power generation facilities, especially in the Western United States. They recommend what should be done to ensure reliable electricity supplies as the region gets hotter and drier. One suggestion: More use of renewable energy sources.
National Science Foundation

Contact: Joe Kullman
joe.kullman@asu.edu
480-965-8122
Arizona State University

Public Release: 18-May-2015
Nature Geoscience
Study proposes common mechanism for shallow and deep earthquakes
A new study published online in Nature Geosciences by a research team led by University of California, Riverside geologists reports that a universal sliding mechanism operates for earthquakes of all depths -- from the deep ones all the way up to the crustal ones. The physics of the sliding is the self-lubrication of the earthquake fault by flow of a new material consisting of tiny new crystals, the study reports.
National Science Foundation

Contact: Iqbal Pittalwala
iqbal@ucr.edu
951-827-6050
University of California - Riverside

Public Release: 18-May-2015
Nature Chemical Biology
Discovery paves way for homebrewed drugs
A research team led by UC Berkeley bioengineers has completed key steps needed to turn sugar-fed yeast into a microbial factory for producing morphine and potentially other drugs, including antibiotics and anticancer agents. The process could soon become as straightforward as making homebrewed beer, prompting calls for urgent regulation.
US Department of Energy, National Science Foundation, Genome Canada, Genome Quebec

Contact: Sarah Yang
scyang@berkeley.edu
510-643-7741
University of California - Berkeley

Public Release: 18-May-2015
ACS Central Science
New link between ocean microbes and atmosphere uncovered
Few things are more refreshing than the kiss of sea spray on your face. You may not realize it, but that cool, moist air influences our climate by affecting how clouds are formed and how sunlight is scattered over the oceans. Today, in ACS Central Science, researchers demonstrate that microbes in seawater can control the chemistry of sea spray ejected into the atmosphere.
National Science Foundation

Contact: Michael Bernstein
m_bernstein@acs.org
202-872-6042
American Chemical Society

Public Release: 18-May-2015
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
Agriculture, declining mobility drove humans' shift to lighter bones
Modern lifestyles have famously made humans heavier, but, in one particular way, noticeably lighter weight than our hunter-gatherer ancestors: in the bones. Now a new study of the bones of hundreds of humans who lived during the past 33,000 years in Europe finds the rise of agriculture and a corresponding fall in mobility drove the change, rather than urbanization, nutrition or other factors.
National Science Foundation, Grant Agency of the Czech Republic, Academy of Finland, Finnish Cultural Foundation

Contact: Shawna Williams
shawna@jhmi.edu
410-955-8236
Johns Hopkins Medicine

Public Release: 15-May-2015
Scientific Reports
New screening method for prostate cancer recurrence
Researchers in the Quantitative Light Imaging Laboratory at the Beckman Institute for Advanced Science and Technology at the University of Illinois used spatial light interference microscopy in order to identify patients at higher risk for prostate cancer recurrence.
National Science Foundation, Agilent Laboratories

Contact: Maeve Reilly
mjreilly@illinois.edu
217-244-7316
Beckman Institute for Advanced Science and Technology

Public Release: 15-May-2015
Science Translational Medicine
Antiviral compound may protect brain from pathogens, West Nile virus study shows
Researchers have found that an antiviral compound may protect the brain from invading pathogens. Studying West Nile virus infection in mice, scientists at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis showed that interferon-lambda tightens the blood-brain barrier, making it harder for the virus to invade the brain.
National Institutes of Health, National Science Foundation

Contact: Judy Martin Finch
martinju@wustl.edu
314-286-0105
Washington University School of Medicine

Public Release: 15-May-2015
Scientific Reports
Random nanowire configurations increase conductivity over heavily ordered configurations
Researchers at Lehigh University have identified for the first time that a performance gain in the electrical conductivity of random metal nanowire networks can be achieved by slightly restricting nanowire orientation. The most surprising result of the study is that heavily ordered configurations do not outperform configurations with some degree of randomness; randomness in the case of metal nanowire orientations acts to increase conductivity.
National Science Foundation, Daniel E. '39 and Patricia M. Smith Endowed Chair Professorship Fund, Center for Photonics and Nanoelectronics at Lehigh University

Contact: Jordan Reese
jor310@lehigh.edu
610-758-6656
Lehigh University

Public Release: 15-May-2015
Ecology Letters
It's best to make friends of friends
Bonding with a friend of a friend is something most humans gravitate toward naturally, or at least Facebook likes to think so every time it suggests friends for you to 'friend.' But a certain four-legged predator, the spotted hyena, seems to know the benefits of this type of social bonding instinctively, according to a new study from the National Institute for Mathematical and Biological Synthesis.
National Institute for Mathematical and Biological Synthesis, National Science Foundation

Contact: Catherine Crawley
ccrawley@nimbios.org
865-974-9350
National Institute for Mathematical and Biological Synthesis (NIMBioS)

Public Release: 14-May-2015
PLOS Pathogens
Antibody's unusual abilities might inspire vaccine strategies
The recent discovery of a novel antibody that works in an unusual way could inspire new vaccine strategies. The antibody appears to have properties that might keep bacteria like disease-causing E. coli from adhering to human cell surfaces and also dislodge those already attached. Among the common pathogens for which researchers are seeking more effective methods to prevent adherence to human cell surfaces are the forms of E. coli that cause urinary tract infections.
National Institutes of Health, National Science Foundation

Contact: Leila Gray
leilag@uw.edu
206-685-0381
University of Washington Health Sciences/UW Medicine

Public Release: 14-May-2015
Journal of Geophysical Research - Solid Earth
Earthquakes reveal deep secrets beneath East Asia
A new supercomputer model combined earthquake data to create 3-D tomographic images to depths of 900 km, or 560 miles below East Asia. The XSEDE Campus Champions, Stampede and Lonestar4 supercomputers of TACC provided computational experts and resources to develop model. Notable features found include a high velocity structure beneath Tibetan Plateau; and a deep mantle upwelling under Hangai dome in Mongolia. This research could help find hidden hydrocarbon resources and explore deep structures elsewhere.
National Science Foundation

Contact: Jorge Salazar
jorge@tacc.utexas.edu
512-471-3980
University of Texas at Austin, Texas Advanced Computing Center

Public Release: 14-May-2015
Nano Letters
CLAIRE brings electron microscopy to soft materials
Berkeley Lab researchers, working at the Molecular Foundry, have invented a technique called 'CLAIRE' that extends the incredible resolution of electron microscopy to the noninvasive nanoscale imaging of soft matter, including biomolecules.
US Department of Energy Office of Science, National Science Foundation

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

Public Release: 14-May-2015
Science
Revealing the ocean's hidden fertilizer
Phosphorus is one of the most common substances on Earth. An essential nutrient for every living organism -- humans require approximately 700 milligrams per day -- we are rarely concerned about consuming enough of it because it is present in most of the foods we eat. Despite its ubiquity and living organisms' utter dependence on it, we know surprisingly little about how it moves, or cycles, through the ocean environment.
National Science Foundation, Simons Foundation

Contact: WHOI Media Relations Office
media@whoi.edu
508-289-3340
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

Public Release: 13-May-2015
Nature
Two Large Hadron Collider experiments first to observe rare subatomic process
Two experiments at the Large Hadron Collider at the European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN) in Geneva, Switzerland, have combined their results and observed a previously unseen subatomic process.
DOE/Office of Science, National Science Foundation

Contact: Andre Salles
media@fnal.gov
630-840-3351
DOE/Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory

Public Release: 13-May-2015
Physical Review Letters
Researchers build new fermion microscope
A team of MIT physicists has built a microscope that is able to see up to 1,000 individual fermionic atoms. The researchers devised a laser-based technique to trap and freeze fermions in place, and image the particles simultaneously.
National Science Foundation, Air Force Office of Scientific Research, Office of Naval Research, Army Research Office, David and Lucile Packard Foundation

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

Public Release: 13-May-2015
ACS Nano
New nanomaterials inspired by bird feathers play with light to create color
Inspired by the way iridescent bird feathers play with light, scientists have created thin films of material in a wide range of pure colors -- from red to green -- with hues determined by physical structure rather than pigments. Chemists synthesized and assembled nanoparticles of a synthetic version of melanin to mimic the natural structures found in bird feathers.
Air Force Office of Scientific Research, National Science Foundation

Contact: Susan Brown
sdbrown@ucsd.edu
858-246-0161
University of California - San Diego

Public Release: 13-May-2015
Nature
Study reveals how rivers regulate global carbon cycle
River transport of carbon to the ocean is not on a scale that will solve our CO2 problem, but we haven't known how much carbon the world's rivers routinely flush into the ocean, until now. A study by WHOI scientists calculated the first direct estimate of how much and in what form organic carbon is exported by rivers. The estimate will help modelers predict how this export may shift as Earth's climate changes.
National Science Foundation, Swiss National Science Foundation

Contact: WHOI Media Office
media@whoi.edu
508-289-3340
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

Public Release: 13-May-2015
PLOS ONE
Trap-jaw ants jump with their jaws to escape the antlion's den
Some species of trap-jaw ants use their spring-loaded mandibles to hurl themselves out of harm's way when an ant-trapping predator stalks, researchers report in the journal PLOS ONE. This dramatic maneuver doubles the ants' survival when other escape methods fail, the researchers found. (See video.)
National Geographic Society Committee for Research and Exploration, National Science Foundation, American Museum of Natural History

Contact: Diana Yates
diya@illinois.edu
217-333-5802
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Public Release: 12-May-2015
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
Molecular switch that promotes heart cell maturation discovered
The difficulty in getting stem cells to mature into more adult-like heart cells has hindered the search for regenerative treatments for hearts damaged by disease. A molecular switch has now been discovered that appears to help embryonic heart cells switch from a glucose to fatty acid based metabolism. They become larger, stronger, and look and act like more mature heart cells. This discovery may lead to lab methods to grow heart cells that function more like those in adult hearts.
National Institutes of Health, Teitze Young Scientist Award, National Science Foundation, Hahn Family, University of Washington Stem Cell & Regenerative Medicine Research Institute

Contact: Leila Gray
leilag@uw.edu
206-685-0381
University of Washington Health Sciences/UW Medicine

Public Release: 12-May-2015
Scientific Reports
Male hormones help lemur females rule
Lemur girls behave more like the guys, thanks to a little testosterone, finds a new study. When it comes to conventional gender roles, lemurs -- distant primate cousins of ours -- buck the trend. Duke University researchers say females have significantly lower testosterone levels than the males across the board. But when they compared six lemur species, they found that females of species where females dominate have higher testosterone than females of more egalitarian species.
National Science Foundation, Margot Marsh Biodiversity Foundation

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

Showing releases 201-225 out of 838.

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