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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 676-700 out of 751.

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Public Release: 19-Feb-2014
Vector-Borne and Zoonotic Diseases
Research prevents zoonotic feline tularemia by finding influential geospatial factors
A Kansas State University epidemiologist is helping cats, pet owners and soldiers stay healthy by researching feline tularemia.
National Science Foundation

Contact: Ram Raghavan
rkraghavan@k-state.edu
785-532-4450
Kansas State University

Public Release: 19-Feb-2014
Nature
The ups and downs of early atmospheric oxygen
The period of extended low oxygen spanning from roughly two to less than one billion years ago was a time of remarkable chemical stability in the Earth's ocean and atmosphere. A University of California, Riverside team of biogeochemists reports that oxygen was much lower than previously thought during this important middle chapter in Earth history, which likely explains the low abundances and diversity of eukaryotic organisms and the absence of animals.
National Science Foundation, NASA

Contact: Iqbal Pittalwala
iqbal@ucr.edu
951-827-6397
University of California - Riverside

Public Release: 18-Feb-2014
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
Regenerating orthopedic tissues within the human body
A team of Duke University biomedical engineers has developed a polymer scaffold for growing cartilage that includes gene therapy vectors to induce stem cells to produce the growth factors they need. The new technique -- biomaterial-mediated gene delivery -- is shown to produce cartilage at least as good biochemically and biomechanically as if the growth factors were introduced in the laboratory.
Nancy Taylor Foundation for Chronic Diseases, Arthritis Foundation, AO Foundation, National Science Foundation, National Institutes of Health

Contact: Ken Kingery
ken.kingery@duke.edu
919-660-8414
Duke University

Public Release: 18-Feb-2014
eLife
Nitrogen-tracking tools for better crops and less pollution
As every gardner knows, nitrogen is crucial for a plant's growth. But nitrogen absorption is inefficient. This means that on the scale of food crops, adding significant levels of nitrogen to the soil through fertilizer presents a number of problems, particularly river and groundwater pollution. As a result, finding a way to improve nitrogen uptake in agricultural products could improve yields and decrease risks to environmental and human health.
National Science Foundation

Contact: Wolf Frommer
wfrommer@carnegiescience.edu
650-325-1521 x208
Carnegie Institution

Public Release: 18-Feb-2014
Biomaterials
Baby hearts need rhythm to develop correctly
Vanderbilt researchers report that they have taken an important step toward the goal of growing replacement heart valves from a patient's own cells by determining that the mechanical forces generated by the rhythmic expansion and contraction of cardiac muscle cells play an active role in the initial stage of heart valve formation.
National Institutes of Health, National Science Foundation, American Heart Association

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

Public Release: 18-Feb-2014
Nature Chemistry
Artificial cells and salad dressing
A University of California, Riverside assistant professor of engineering is among a group of researchers that have made important discoveries regarding the behavior of a synthetic molecular oscillator, which could serve as a timekeeping device to control artificial cells.
National Science Foundation

Contact: Sean Nealon
sean.nealon@ucr.edu
951-827-1287
University of California - Riverside

Public Release: 18-Feb-2014
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
Frequent flyers, bottle gourds crossed the ocean many times
Bottle gourds traveled the Atlantic Ocean from Africa and were likely domesticated many times in various parts of the New World, according to a team of scientists who studied bottle gourd genetics to show they have an African, not Asian ancestry.
National Science Foundation

Contact: A'ndrea Elyse Messer
aem1@psu.edu
814-865-9481
Penn State

Public Release: 18-Feb-2014
Nature Chemistry
Artificial leaf jumps developmental hurdle
Along with colleagues at Argonne National Laboratory, ASU scientists have reported advances toward perfecting an artificial leaf that uses solar energy to convert water cheaply and efficiently into hydrogen and oxygen. This development has the potential to sustainably harness the energy needed to provide the food, fuel and fiber that human needs are increasingly demanding.
US Department of Energy, National Science Foundation, MGE@MSA

Contact: Jenny Green
jenny.green@asu.edu
480-965-1430
Arizona State University

Public Release: 18-Feb-2014
Environmental Research Letters
Embarking on geoengineering, then stopping, would speed up global warming
Spraying reflective particles into the atmosphere to reflect sunlight and then stopping it would exacerbate the problem of climate change, research shows.
National Science Foundation, Tamaki Foundation, James S. McDonnell Foundation

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

Public Release: 18-Feb-2014
Environmental Science and Technology
University of Illinois study of 2011 flood will lead to better preparedness
In May 2011, when the US Army Corps of Engineers used explosives to breach a levee south of Cairo, Ill., diverting the rising waters of the Mississippi and Ohio rivers to prevent flooding in the town, about 130,000 acres of Missouri farmland were inundated. University of Illinois' researchers took advantage of this 'once-in-a-scientific-lifetime' occurrence to study the damage. Their study showed that landscape vulnerabilities can be mapped ahead of time to help communities prepare for extreme flooding.
National Science Foundation

Contact: Praveen Kumar
kumar1@illinois.edu
217-333-4688
University of Illinois College of Engineering

Public Release: 18-Feb-2014
Astrophysical Journal
When a black hole shreds a star, a bright flare tells the story
A new study explains what happens during the disruption of a normal sun-like star by a supermassive black hole. The study shows why observers might fail to see evidence of the hydrogen in the star, casting doubt on a 2012 report of the disruption of an exotic helium star.
Packard Foundation, National Science Foundation, NASA

Contact: Tim Stephens
stephens@ucsc.edu
831-459-2495
University of California - Santa Cruz

Public Release: 18-Feb-2014
Nature Communications
Quest for jellyfish robot leads to discovery of bending rules for animal wing, fin tips
A Navy-sponsored project to design a biologically inspired, swimming jellyfish robot has led scientists to the surprising discovery of common bending rules for the tips of wings, fins, flukes, mollusk feet, and other propulsors across a broad range of animal species.
Office of Naval Research, National Science Foundation

Contact: Diana Kenney
dkenney@mbl.edu
508-289-7139
Marine Biological Laboratory

Public Release: 18-Feb-2014
Nature Chemistry
The thousand-droplets test
In the future, an entire chemistry lab could be accommodated in a tiny little droplet. While simple reactions already work in these simplest models of an artificial cell now a group of scientists of the Cluster of Excellence Nanosystems Initiative Munich have established and investigated for the first time a complex biochemical system. They discovered a surprising diversity.
National Science Foundation, European Commission, German Research Foundation, Bavarian Elite Network

Contact: Dr. Andreas Battenberg
battenberg@zv.tum.de
49-892-891-0510
Technische Universitaet Muenchen

Public Release: 18-Feb-2014
International Journal of Epidemiology
More educated people from wealthier areas, women, more likely to die from assisted suicide
Researchers in Switzerland, where assisted suicide is legal, have conducted a study -- published online in the International Journal of Epidemiology today -- that shows assisted suicide is more common in women, the divorced, those living alone, the more educated, those with no religious affiliation, and those from wealthier areas.
Swiss National Science Foundation

Contact: Kirsty Doole
kirsty.doole@oup.com
44-018-653-55439
Oxford University Press

Public Release: 17-Feb-2014
Organic Letters
A better way to purify peptide-based drugs
During the production of peptide drugs, amino acids attach to each other in chains, but some of the chains are never completed. To separate these truncated peptides from the good ones, Shiyue Fang's team adds a polymerizable group of atoms to the mix. These atoms bind to either the perfect peptides or the unfinished ones, but not to both. The polymerized peptides become insoluble and precipitate out of the solution.
National Science Foundation

Contact: Marcia Goodrich
mtunews@mtu.edu
906-487-2343
Michigan Technological University

Public Release: 16-Feb-2014
2014 AAAS Annual Meeting
Archaeologists lend long-term perspective to food security and climate shock
What role does pre-existing vulnerabilities play for people who experience a climate shock? Does it amplify the effects of the climate shock or is effect negligible? Four Arizona State University archaeologists are looking into this as part of an international team examining how people can be most resilient to climate change when it comes to food security.
National Science Foundation

Contact: Skip Derra
skip.derra@asu.edu
480-965-4823
Arizona State University

Public Release: 16-Feb-2014
Nature
Volcanoes, including Mt. Hood, can go from dormant to active quickly
A new study suggests that the magma sitting 4-5 kilometers beneath the surface of Oregon's Mount Hood has been stored in near-solid conditions for thousands of years, but that the time it takes to liquefy and potentially erupt is surprisingly short -- perhaps as little as a couple of months.
National Science Foundation

Contact: Adam Kent
adam.kent@geo.oregonstate.edu
541-737-1205
Oregon State University

Public Release: 16-Feb-2014
Nature
Mount Hood study suggests volcano eruptibility is rare
Forecasts of when a volcano is ready to erupt could be a little closer thanks to work by geologists at UC Davis and Oregon State University.
National Science Foundation

Contact: Andy Fell
ahfell@ucdavis.edu
530-752-4533
University of California - Davis

Public Release: 15-Feb-2014
2014 AAAS Annual Meeting
Top-down and bottom-up approach needed to conserve potato agrobiodiversity
Mashed, smashed and fried, Americans love potatoes, but only a few varieties are grown in much of North American agriculture. In South America, where potatoes originated, more than 5,000 varieties continue to exist. A Penn State geographer is gathering all the information he can about the agrobiodiversity of these uniquely adapted tubers with an eye toward sustainability of this fourth largest food crop worldwide.
National Science Foundation

Contact: A'ndrea Elyse Messer
aem1@psu.edu
814-865-9481
Penn State

Public Release: 15-Feb-2014
2014 AAAS Annual Meeting
Beat-keeping sea lion shows surprising rhythmic ability
Ronan, a California sea lion at Long Marine Laboratory at University of California Santa Cruz, is the first non-human mammal convincingly shown to be able to keep the beat.
National Science Foundation, Packard Foundation

Contact: Tim Stephens
stephens@ucsc.edu
831-459-2495
University of California - Santa Cruz

Public Release: 14-Feb-2014
International Union of Crystallography Journal
Superbright and fast X-rays image single layer of proteins
In biology, a protein's shape is key to understanding how it causes disease or toxicity. Researchers who use X-rays to takes snapshots of proteins need a billion copies of the same protein stacked and packed into a neat crystal. Now, scientists using exceptionally bright and fast X-rays can take a picture that rivals conventional methods with a sheet of proteins just one protein molecule thick.
Department of Energy, National Institutes of Health, National Science Foundation

Contact: Mary Beckman
mary.beckman@pnnl.gov
509-375-3688
DOE/Pacific Northwest National Laboratory

Public Release: 14-Feb-2014
Advanced Functional Materials
Rice's carbon nanotube fibers outperform copper
Carbon nanotube-based fibers invented at Rice University have greater capacity to carry electrical current than copper cables of the same mass.
US Department of Energy, National Science Foundation, Robert A. Welch Foundation, Teijin Aramid BV, Air Force Office of Scientific Research, US Department of Defense National Defense Science and Engineering Graduate Fellowship

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

Public Release: 13-Feb-2014
Environmental Science & Technology
Screening wastewater biosolids for environmental contaminants
Researchers describe a cost-effective method for screening chemicals found in wastewater biosolids used in fertilizer for potential environmental impact. They have used the test to show that triclosan, an antimicrobial agent currently under fire from environmentalists, has troubling concentrations in the environment, and they raise suspicions about three other commonly used antimicrobial products.
National Science Foundation

Contact: Ken Kingery
ken.kingery@duke.edu
919-660-8414
Duke University

Public Release: 13-Feb-2014
Nature Scientific Reports
Environment influences ability of bacterium to block malaria transmission
The environment significantly influences whether or not a certain bacterium will block mosquitoes from transmitting malaria, according to researchers at Penn State.
National Science Foundation, National Institutes of Health, Pennsylvania Department of Health

Contact: A'ndrea Elyse Messer
aem1@psu.edu
814-865-9481
Penn State

Public Release: 12-Feb-2014
Global Environmental Change
Dartmouth study shows US Southwest irrigation system facing decline after 4 centuries
Communal irrigation systems known as acequias that have sustained farming villages in the arid southwestern United States for centuries are struggling because of dwindling snowmelt runoff and social and economic factors that favor modernism over tradition, a Dartmouth College study finds.
National Science Foundation

Contact: John Cramer
John.Cramer@Dartmouth.edu
603-646-9130
Dartmouth College

Showing releases 676-700 out of 751.

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