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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 1001-1025 out of 1151.

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Public Release: 7-Aug-2020
Science Advances
Predicting drought in the American West just got more difficult
A new, USC-led study of more than 1,000 years of North American droughts and global conditions found that forecasting a lack of precipitation is rarely straightforward.
National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration, National Science Foundation, University of Southern California, Northern Arizona University

Contact: Gary Polakovic
polakovi@usc.edu
213-740-1927
University of Southern California

Public Release: 7-Aug-2020
Trends in Ecology and Evolution
Deep-sea misconceptions cause underestimation of seabed-mining impacts
A new publication on the impacts of deep-seabed mining by 13 prominent deep-sea biologists, led by University of Hawai'i at Mānoa, seeks to dispel scientific misconceptions that have led to miscalculations of the likely effects of commercial operations to extract minerals from the seabed.
Gordon & Betty Moore Foundation, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, National Science Foundation

Contact: Marcie Grabowski
mworkman@hawaii.edu
808-956-3151
University of Hawaii at Manoa

Public Release: 7-Aug-2020
Science Advances
Highly sensitive dopamine detector uses 2D materials
A supersensitive dopamine detector can help in the early diagnosis of several disorders that result in too much or too little dopamine, according to a group led by Penn State and including Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and universities in China and Japan.
National Science Foundation, IUCRC-ATOMIC Center

Contact: A'ndrea Elyse Messer
aem1@psu.edu
814-865-5689
Penn State

Public Release: 7-Aug-2020
Geophysical Research Letters
Researchers find link between Atlantic hurricanes and weather system in East Asia
Climate researchers led by the University of Iowa have found a link between hurricanes that form in the Atlantic Ocean - and threaten the United States - and a weather system in East Asia. A jet stream originating in East Asia carries an atmospheric wave to the Atlantic Ocean that affects wind shear - a key element in whether tropical storms develop.
US National Science Foundation, US Army Corps of Engineers' Institute for Water Resources, the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, the Carbon Mitigation Initiative, and the Cooperative Institute for Modeling the Earth System

Contact: Richard Lewis
richard-c-lewis@uiowa.edu
401-662-6336
University of Iowa

Public Release: 7-Aug-2020
D. Stamps receives NSF CAREER grant to study role of volcanism in continental rifting
D. Sarah Stamps, an assistant professor in the Department of Geosciences in the College of Science, has received a five-year Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) Program grant worth $625,000 from the National Science Foundation (NSF) to investigate the role of volcanism in early phase continental rifting -- the process in which two plates move apart and stretch the continental crust -- at the Natron Rift in Tanzania.
National Science Foundation

Contact: Steven Mackay
smackay@vt.edu
540-231-5035
Virginia Tech

Public Release: 7-Aug-2020
Nature Communications
Florida current is weaker now than at any point in the past century
A key component of the Gulf Stream has markedly slowed over the past century--that's the conclusion of a new research paper in Nature Communications published on August 7, 2020.
National Science Foundation

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

Public Release: 7-Aug-2020
Berry studying semiparametric methods for data assimilation & uncertainty quantification
Tyrus Berry, Assistant Professor, Mathematical Sciences, will soon begin a project developing semiparametric modeling techniques that optimally leverage the strengths of parametric and nonparametric methods, while negating their weaknesses.
National Science Foundation

Contact: Elizabeth Grisham
egrisham@gmu.edu
703-993-5381
George Mason University

Public Release: 7-Aug-2020
LaToza creating platform for conducting software engineering user studies
Thomas LaToza, Assistant Professor, Computer Science, Volgenau School of Engineering, is set to begin a project aimed at creating a community research infrastructure for conducting software engineering user studies.
National Science Foundation

Contact: Elizabeth Grisham
egrisham@gmu.edu
703-993-5381
George Mason University

Public Release: 7-Aug-2020
Proceedings of National Academy of Sciences
Smartwatch tracks medication levels to personalize treatments
Engineers at the UCLA Samueli School of Engineering and their colleagues at Stanford School of Medicine have demonstrated that drug levels inside the body can be tracked in real time using a custom smartwatch that analyzes the chemicals found in sweat. This wearable technology could be incorporated into a more personalized approach to medicine -- where an ideal drug and dosages can be tailored to an individual.
National Science Foundation, PhRMA Foundation, Brain and Behavior Foundation, Henry Jackson Foundation

Contact: Christine Wei-li Lee
clee@seas.ucla.edu
310-206-0540
University of California - Los Angeles

Public Release: 7-Aug-2020
Nature
The last unknown
New research reveals that New Guinea is the world's richest island for plants.
National Science Foundation

Contact: Joshua E Brown
joshua.brown@uvm.edu
802-557-7677
University of Vermont

Public Release: 6-Aug-2020
Scientific Reports
Training neural circuits early in development improves response, study finds
When it comes to training neural circuits for tissue engineering or biomedical applications, a new study suggests a key parameter: Train them young. Training of engineered neurons has many applications in bioengineering and regenerative medicine. Techniques usually involve training cells after they have fully matured. University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign researchers found that training them throughout early cell development and network formation led to lasting improvements in the connections, responsivity and gene expression of the resulting neural network.
National Science Foundation

Contact: Liz Ahlberg Touchstone
eahlberg@illinois.edu
217-244-1073
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, News Bureau

Public Release: 6-Aug-2020
Bioresource Technology
New science behind algae-based flip-flops
Sustainable flip-flops: A team of UC San Diego researchers has formulated polyurethane foams made from algae oil to meet commercial specifications for midsole shoes and the foot-bed of flip-flops. The results of their study are published in Bioresource Technology Reports and describe the team's successful development of these sustainable, consumer-ready and biodegradable materials.
Department of Energy Bioenergy Technologies Office, National Science Foundation

Contact: Mario Aguilera or Cynthia Dillon
maguilera@ucsd.edu
858-822-5148
University of California - San Diego

Public Release: 6-Aug-2020
Nature Machine Intelligence
Algorithm created by deep learning finds potential therapeutic targets throughout genome
A team of researchers have developed an algorithm through machine learning that helps predict sites of DNA methylation - a process that can change the activity of DNA without changing its overall structure - and could identify disease-causing mechanisms that would otherwise be missed by conventional screening methods.
Extreme Science and Engineering Discovery Environment, National Science Foundation

Contact: Ben Leach
leachb@email.chop.edu
609-634-7906
Children's Hospital of Philadelphia

Public Release: 6-Aug-2020
Genetics
Tasmanian devil research offers new insights for tackling cancer in humans
Researchers found a single genetic mutation that leads to reduced growth of a transmissible cancer in Tasmanian devils in the wild. The finding gives hope for the animals' survival and could lead to new treatment for human cancers.
National Institutes of Health, National Science Foundation and the Washington Research Foundation

Contact: Andrew Storfer
astorfer@wsu.edu
509-335-7922
Washington State University

Public Release: 6-Aug-2020
FAU's 'Fantastic Four' researchers receive prestigious NSF CAREER Awards
Four FAU researchers have received the coveted NSF Early Career (CAREER) award for research to develop a low-cost, disposable point-of-care platform to detect current and emerging infectious diseases; for a cognitive screening tool for the early detection of Alzheimer's disease using wearables and a smartphone; for mathematical tools and new ways of coding to enhance cybersecurity; and to better understand how marine animals tune, or dynamically adjust their movements using their skin and skeletons.
National Science Foundation (NSF) Early Career (CAREER) Awards

Contact: Gisele Galoustian
ggaloust@fau.edu
561-985-4615
Florida Atlantic University

Public Release: 5-Aug-2020
Science Advances
Herbivores, not predators, most at risk of extinction
One million years ago, the extinction of large-bodied plant-eaters changed the trajectory of life on Earth. The disappearance of these large herbivores reshaped plant life, altered fire regimes across Earth's landscapes, and modified biogeochemical cycling in such a way that Earth's climate became slightly colder.
Utah State University Ecology Center, Graduate Enhancement Award; an Early Career Research Fellowship from the Gulf Research Program of the National Academies of Sciences, Utah State University Agricultural Experiment Station, National Science Foundation

Contact: Trisha Atwood
trisha.atwood@usu.edu
S.J. & Jessie E. Quinney College of Natural Resources, Utah State University

Public Release: 5-Aug-2020
Proceedings of the Royal Society B
Warming climate may trigger more West Nile outbreaks in Southern California
A new study of captured mosquitoes in Los Angeles finds that West Nile infection is strongly associated with average temperature, and that temperatures above 73 degrees Fahrenheit are highly favorable for West Nile transmission. As climate change brings hotter weather to the region, it is likely that cooler, coastal neighborhoods will be pushed into the 'favorable' zone, accelerating transmission of the virus.
NIH/National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, National Science Foundation, National Institute of Health's Fogarty International Center and UC Office of the President

Contact: Kara Manke
kjmanke@berkeley.edu
University of California - Berkeley

Public Release: 5-Aug-2020
Cell Stem Cell
Implanted neural stem cell grafts show functionality in spinal cord injuries
Researchers at UC San Diego School of Medicine report successfully implanting specialized grafts of neural stem cells directly into spinal cord injuries in mice, then documenting how the grafts grew and filled the injury sites, mimicking the animals' existing neuronal network.
Wings for Life, University of California Frontiers of Innovation Scholars Program, Veterans Administration (Gordon Mansfield Spinal Cord Injury Collaborative Consortium), National Institutes of Health, Craig H. Neilsen Foundation

Contact: Scott LaFee
slafee@ucsd.edu
858-249-0456
University of California - San Diego

Public Release: 5-Aug-2020
Nature
Gut microbes shape our antibodies before we are infected by pathogens
Because the microbiota is so complex, containing hundreds of different bacterial species, it is not known how the presence of microbes in the intestine shaped the antibodies that are present even before we are challenged by an infection. Researchers at the Department for BioMedical Research (DBMR) of the University of Bern and the Inselspital, University Hospital Bern, have now shown how these beneficial microbes reprogram the repertoire of white blood B cells that produce antibodies and how this helps counter infections.
European Research Council ERC, Marie Sklodowska-Curie Program, European Molecular Biology Organization EMBO, Swiss National Science Foundation SNSF

Contact: Andrew Macpherson
andrew.macpherson@dbmr.unibe.ch
41-316-328-025
University of Bern

Public Release: 5-Aug-2020
Astrophyiscal Journal
Astronomers sink their teeth into special supernova
Astronomers using several telescopes at NOIRLab, including the Southern Astrophysical Research (SOAR) Telescope, have obtained critical data on a particular type of exploding star that produces copious amounts of calcium. The calcium produced in this unique type of supernova explosion is the same calcium found in our bones and teeth and these events account for up to half of the calcium found in the Universe.
National Science Foundation

Contact: Peter Michaud
pmichaud@gemini.edu
808-936-6643
Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy (AURA)

Public Release: 5-Aug-2020
Astrophyiscal Journal
Calcium-rich supernova examined with x-rays for first time
X-ray images give unprecedented view of extremely rare type of supernova. New information suggests that these supernovae start as compact stars that lose mass at the end of life. Calcium-rich supernovae are responsible for up to half the calcium in the entire universe. SN 2019ehk has the richest calcium emission of all known transients
National Science Foundation

Contact: Mari-Ela Chock
mchock@keck.hawaii.edu
808-554-0567
W. M. Keck Observatory

Public Release: 5-Aug-2020
Sciences Advances
Bay Area coastal flooding triggers regionwide commute disruptions
Researchers have modeled how coastal flooding will impact commutes in the Bay Area over the next 20 years. Regions with sparse road networks will have some of the worst commute delays, regardless of their distances from the coast.
UPS Endowment Fund, Stanford's Bill Lane Center for the American West, National Science Foundation's Office of Polar Programs

Contact: Danielle T. Tucker
dttucker@stanford.edu
650-497-9541
Stanford University

Public Release: 5-Aug-2020
Astrophyiscal Journal
Calcium-rich supernova examined with X-rays for first time
New findings reveal that a calcium-rich supernova is a compact star that sheds an outer layer of gas during the final stages of its life. When the star explodes, its matter collides with the loose material in that outer shell, emitting bright X-rays. The overall explosion causes intensely hot temperatures and high pressure, driving a chemical reaction that produces calcium.
National Science Foundation

Contact: Amanda Morris
amandamo@northwestern.edu
217-417-4846
Northwestern University

Public Release: 4-Aug-2020
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
FSU geologists publish new findings on carbonate melts in Earth's mantle
Geologists from Florida State University's Department of Earth, Ocean and Atmospheric Science have discovered how carbon-rich molten rock in the Earth's upper mantle might affect the movement of seismic waves.
National Science Foundation, National Natural Science Foundation of China

Contact: Bill Wellock
wwellock@fsu.edu
850-645-1504
Florida State University

Public Release: 4-Aug-2020
NSF backs bioinformatics approach to understanding plant RNA modifications
BTI's Andrew Nelson and collaborators received $2 million from the NSF to identify and infer the functional significance of dozens of different types of RNA modifications in 15 diverse model and crop species. This project will potentially enable researchers to develop more stress-tolerant crops, which is becoming increasingly important because of the effects of climate change. The project also places a strong focus on building undergraduate curricula teaching biology as a data-driven science.
National Science Foundation

Contact: AJ Bouchie
ajbouchie@btiscience.org
Boyce Thompson Institute

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