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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 51-75 out of 912.

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Public Release: 24-Nov-2016
Science
For platinum catalysts, tiny squeeze gives big boost in performance, Stanford study says
Squeezing a platinum catalyst a fraction of a nanometer nearly doubles its catalytic activity, a finding that could lead to better fuel cells and other clean energy technologies, say Stanford scientists. The findings are published in the Nov. 25 issue of Science.
US Department of Energy, Stanford Global Climate and Energy Project, Stanford Interdisciplinary Graduate Fellowship Program, National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship Program

Contact: Mark Shwartz
mshwartz@stanford.edu
650-723-9296
Stanford University

Public Release: 24-Nov-2016
Science
Bringing silicon to life
Living organisms have been persuaded to make chemical bonds not found in nature, a finding that may change how medicines and other chemicals are made in the future.
National Science Foundation, Caltech Innovation Initiative program, Jacobs Institute for Molecular Engineering for Medicine at Caltech

Contact: Whitney Clavin
wclavin@caltech.edu
626-390-9601
California Institute of Technology

Public Release: 23-Nov-2016
The eye has it: Vitreous gel could hold clues to visual impairment
Research is underway at Rochester Institute of Technology that will give scientists a better understanding of the vitreous humor, or gel, that fills the eye and could lead to advances in the treatment of vision disorders, drug delivery and eye surgery. RIT biophysicist Moumita Das is leading a National Science Foundation-funded study to explore properties critical to the function of the vitreous and the eye.
National Science Foundation

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

Public Release: 23-Nov-2016
Nature
Uncovering the secrets of friction on graphene
Researchers have uncovered the secrets of friction on two-dimensional materials such as graphene and boron nitride.
National Science Foundation

Contact: Ms. Karl-Lydie Jean-Baptiste
kjeanbap@mit.edu
617-253-1682
Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Public Release: 23-Nov-2016
$2 million grant to help youngest students learn science
Using a four-year, $2.2 million grant from the National Science Foundation, Michigan State University scholars plan to help teachers across the nation introduce science to the youngest students.
National Science Foundation

Contact: Andy Henion
henion@msu.edu
517-355-3294
Michigan State University

Public Release: 23-Nov-2016
Nature
Researchers put mouse embryos in suspended animation
UC San Francisco researchers have found a way to pause the development of early mouse embryos for up to a month in the lab, a finding with potential implications for assisted reproduction, regenerative medicine, aging, and even cancer, the authors say.
National Institutes of Health, National Science Foundation

Contact: Nicholas Weiler
nicholas.weiler@ucsf.edu
415-476-8255
University of California - San Francisco

Public Release: 23-Nov-2016
Scientific Reports
Hurricane risk to northeast USA coast increasing, research warns
The Northeastern coast of the USA could be struck by more frequent and more powerful hurricanes in the future due to shifting weather patterns, according to new research.
European Research Council, National Science Foundation, Alphawood Foundation, Schweizer National Fund, Sinergia, Inter-American Institute for Global Change Research

Contact: Dionne Hamil
dionne.hamil@dur.ac.uk
0044-191-334-6078
Durham University

Public Release: 23-Nov-2016
Science Advances
Huge reduction in African dust plume impacted climate 11,000 years ago
Researchers from MIT, Yale University, and elsewhere now report that the African plume was far less dusty between 5,000 and 11,000 years ago, containing only half the amount of dust that is transported today. In a paper published today in Science Advances, the researchers have reconstructed the African dust plume over the last 23,000 years and observed a dramatic reduction in dust beginning around 11,000 years ago.
National Science Foundation

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

Public Release: 23-Nov-2016
Nature
New study reveals when West Antarctica's largest glacier started retreating
Reporting this week in the journal Nature an international team led by British Antarctic Survey explains that present-day thinning and retreat of Pine Island Glacier, one of the largest and fastest shrinking glaciers of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet, is part of a climate trend that was already underway as early as the 1940s.
National Science Foundation, Natural Environment Research Council

Contact: Athena Dinar
amdi@bas.ac.uk
44-122-322-1441
British Antarctic Survey

Public Release: 22-Nov-2016
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
Single enzyme controls 2 plant hormones
Scientists at Washington University in St. Louis have isolated the first enzyme shown to be capable of controlling the levels of two distinct plant hormones, involved both in normal growth and in responses to infections. Overexpressing the protein in plants reduced the levels of active hormones, leading to stunted plants. The researchers purified the protein and solved the structure, showing surprising similarities with enzymes that could only bind a single hormone.
National Science Foundation, US Department of Agriculture

Contact: Diana Lutz
dlutz@wustl.edu
314-935-5272
Washington University in St. Louis

Public Release: 22-Nov-2016
Physics of Plasmas
Article proposes theory behind fast magnetic reconnection
Theoretical description of the physics behind fast magnetic reconnection.
National Science Foundation, US Department of Energy

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

Public Release: 22-Nov-2016
Earth's Future
Oceans act as 'heat sink'
Study by three universities, NASA, NOAA and NCAR, points to the prominent role global ocean played in absorbing extra heat from the atmosphere by acting as a 'heat sink' as an explanation for the observed decrease in a key indicator of climate change.
National Science Foundation, NASA, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory

Contact: Peter Bothum
pbothum@udel.edu
302-831-1418
University of Delaware

Public Release: 22-Nov-2016
Royal Society Proceedings B
Feast without fear: USU scientist says more snake species resist toxin
Scientists from Utah State University and Kyoto University report snakes throughout the globe, some of which never eat toads chemically defended by bufadienolides, nevertheless possess the life-saving mutation that enables them to resist the ill effects of the toxins, which suggests these mutations are highly ancestral and pose no negative consequences for the snakes.
Society for Integrative and Comparative Grant-in-Aid of Research, National Science Foundation, Japan Society for the Promotion of Science

Contact: Shabnam Mohammadi
shab.mohammadi@gmail.com
435-797-1575
Utah State University

Public Release: 22-Nov-2016
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
Cancer cells 'talk' to their environment, and it talks back
A Cornell-led team has devised a method for measuring the mechanical force cells exert on their surroundings, which can help scientists design better biomaterial scaffolds for tissue engineering.
National Science Foundation, National Institutes of Health, NIH/National Cancer Institute

Contact: Tom Fleischman
tjf85@cornell.edu
607-255-9735
Cornell University

Public Release: 22-Nov-2016
Insectes Sociaux
New dominant ant species discovered in Ethiopia shows potential for global invasion
A team of scientists conducting a recent biodiversity survey in the ancient church forests of Ethiopia made an unexpected discovery -- a rather infamous ant species (Lepisiota canescens) displaying signs of supercolony formation.
Tree Research, Exploration & Education Foundation, Southeast Climate 39 Science Center, National Science Foundation

Contact: D. Magdalena Sorger
dm.sorger@gmail.com
North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences

Public Release: 21-Nov-2016
Geology
Scientists reconstruct formation of the southern Appalachians
A new study finds that the process that built the Appalachian Mountains 300 million years ago is similar to the process building the Himalayas today.
National Science Foundation, EarthScope Program

Contact: Kevin Stacey
kevin_stacey@brown.edu
401-863-3766
Brown University

Public Release: 21-Nov-2016
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
Catching molecular dance moves in slow motion by adding white noise
If you could watch to a molecule of medication attaching to a cell receptor in extreme slow motion, they would look something like a space ship docking with a space station -- some twists, turns, sputters then locking together tight. With a new improvement to atomic force microscopy by Georgia Tech engineers, seeing this kind of detail is more likely to become possible.
National Science Foundation

Contact: Ben Brumfield
ben.brumfield@comm.gatech.edu
404-660-1408
Georgia Institute of Technology

Public Release: 21-Nov-2016
Geophysical Research Letters
How to monitor global ocean warming -- without harming whales
Tracking the speed of internal tides offers a cheap, simple way to monitor temperature changes throughout the world's oceans.
National Science Foundation, NASA

Contact: Hannah Hickey
hickeyh@uw.edu
206-788-7314
University of Washington

Public Release: 21-Nov-2016
Nature Physics
New clues emerge in 30-year-old superconductor mystery
Researchers are taking steps toward cracking the puzzle of how high-temperature superconductors work.
Army Research Office, National Science Foundation, Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation, Canadian Institute for Advanced Research, Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council

Contact: Whitney Clavin
wclavin@caltech.edu
626-395-1856
California Institute of Technology

Public Release: 21-Nov-2016
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
US record high temps could outpace record lows 15 to 1 before
If society continues to pump greenhouse gases into the atmosphere at the current rate, Americans later this century will have to endure, on average, about 15 daily maximum temperature records for every time that the mercury notches a record low, new research indicates.
National Science Foundation, US Department of Energy

Contact: David Hosansky
hosansky@ucar.edu
303-497-8611
National Center for Atmospheric Research/University Corporation for Atmospheric Research

Public Release: 21-Nov-2016
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
Keratin and melanosomes preserved in 130-million-year-old bird fossil
New research from North Carolina State University, the Chinese Academy of Sciences and Linyi University has found evidence of original keratin and melanosome preservation in a 130-million-year-old Eoconfuciusornis specimen. The work extends the timeframe in which original molecules may preserve, and demonstrates the ability to distinguish between ancient microstructures in fossils.
National Science Foundation, David and Lucille Packard Foundation, National Natural Science Foundation of China

Contact: Tracey Peake
tracey_peake@ncsu.edu
919-515-6142
North Carolina State University

Public Release: 21-Nov-2016
Methods in Ecology and Evolution
Scientist strengthens tools to track animal, ecosystem responses to environmental changes
By charting the slopes and crags on animals' teeth as if they were mountain ranges, scientists at the Smithsonian's Natural History Museum have created a powerful new way to learn about the diets of extinct animals from the fossil record. The new quantitative approach to analyzing dentition, reported Nov. 21 in Methods in Ecology and Evolution, will also give researchers a clearer picture of how animals evolve in response to changes in their environment.
National Science Foundation

Contact: Ryan Lavery
laveryr@si.edu
202-633-0826
Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History

Public Release: 21-Nov-2016
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
Rockfish siblings shed new light on how offspring diffuse and disperse
A splitnose rockfish's thousands of tiny offspring can stick together in sibling groups from the time they are released into the open ocean until they move to shallower water.
National Science Foundation

Contact: Kirsten Grorud-Colvert
grorudck@science.oregonstate.edu
541-737-9981
Oregon State University

Public Release: 18-Nov-2016
Science Advances
'Freeze-frame' proteins show how cancer evolves
Scientists from Rice University, Baylor College of Medicine and other institutions are using synthetic biology to capture elusive, short-lived snippets of DNA that healthy cells produce on their way to becoming cancerous.
WM Keck Foundation, National Institutes of Health, NASA, Cancer Prevention and Research Institute of Texas, National Science Foundation, Welch Foundation, Baylor College of Medicine, Dan L Duncan Comprehensive Cancer Center, John S. Dunn Gulf Coast Consor

Contact: Jade Boyd
jadeboyd@rice.edu
713-348-6778
Rice University

Public Release: 17-Nov-2016
Journal of Experimental Psychology
The role of physical environment in the 'broken windows' theory
For decades, the influential 'broken windows' theory has linked signs of petty crime to bigger problems in a neighborhood. Largely left out of such discussions, however, is the role simple perceptual features in physical environments play in encouraging rule-breaking. In a new study, researchers at the University of Chicago explored whether mostly subconscious visual cues embedded in dilapidated buildings, overgrown lots and littered streets can fuel deviant behavior.
TKF Foundation, John Templeton Foundation, National Science Foundation

Contact: Mark Peters
petersm@uchicago.edu
773-702-8356
University of Chicago

Showing releases 51-75 out of 912.

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