Culture

Analysis from a University of Texas at Arlington assistant professor of public policy suggests that nationalistic governments around the globe are more likely to copy other nationalistic governments in responding to the current pandemic.

FAIRFAX, Va.-- The final 2021 Medicare Physician Fee Schedule (MPFS) issued this week by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) will result in reimbursement cuts in the range of 10% for neurointerventional procedures, according to a detailed analysis published last week in the Journal of NeuroInterventional Surgery™, the leading international peer-reviewed journal for the clinical field of neurointerventional surgery. Practitioners warn that this measure will jeopardize access to lifesaving care for individuals experiencing strokes, aneurysms and other deadly conditions.

WASHINGTON--A small group of volcanic islands in Alaska's Aleutian chain might be part of a single, undiscovered giant volcano, say scientists presenting the findings Monday, 7 December at AGU's Fall Meeting 2020. If the researchers' suspicions are correct, the newfound volcanic caldera would belong to the same category of volcanoes as the Yellowstone Caldera and other volcanoes that have had super-eruptions with severe global consequences.

Scientists have identified 3 bacteriophages, 47 bacterial species, and 50 fecal metabolites that were significantly more or less abundant in people with major depressive disorder (MDD) compared with healthy controls, according to a study in 311 individuals. The findings provide evidence that MDD may be characterized by gut microbiome disturbances. Jian Yang and colleagues also developed a marker panel based on the bacterial, viral, and metabolic MDD signatures they uncovered, which effectively differentiated between patients with MDD and controls.

Despite the increase in use of e-cigarettes among adolescents, cigarette and smokeless tobacco prevalence declined more rapidly between 2012 and 2019 than in previous periods, according to a new study.

The analysis by the University of Michigan and Georgetown University shows that past 30-day and daily use of both cigarettes and smokeless tobacco fell more rapidly since 2012, even as e-cigarette use began to increase--leading to historical low levels of both cigarette use and smokeless tobacco among teens in the United States.

PITTSBURGH, Dec. 2, 2020 - A mutation in the gene regulating circadian rhythms increases self-administration of cocaine in mice, University of Pittsburgh Schools of the Health Sciences researchers found in a paper published today in the Journal of Neuroscience. The study reveals a molecular basis for the deep and fundamental connection between the disruption in circadian rhythms and predisposition to substance abuse.

The origin of glass beads dates back to early ancient times. The chemical composition of the beads and their morphological and technical characteristics can reveal where they come from; this information can then be used to reconstruct the trade channels between glass production areas and the sites where the beads were used at different times.

Elite athletes can be persuaded not to take banned substances - either by appealing to their sense of morality or educating them about the risks of using performance-enhancing drugs, according to a new study.

Researchers developed two separate intervention programmes - one targeting moral factors associated with doping likelihood, the other introducing doping and providing information about the health consequences of banned substances and the risks of sport supplements.

Nagoya University scientists have furthered understanding of how plants make a common pigment that might have medicinal applications. They published their findings in the journal Scientific Reports.

"We studied black soybeans and found a new biosynthetic precursor of the most common anthocyanin in plants," says Kumi Yoshida of Nagoya University, who led the study and specializes in natural products chemistry.

Non-invasive microscopic techniques such as optical coherence microscopy and two-photon microscopy are commonly used for in vivo imaging of living tissues. When light passes through turbid materials such as biological tissues, two types of light are generated: ballistic photons and multiply scattered photons. The ballistic photons travel straight through the object without experiencing any deflection and hence is used to reconstruct the object image.

Nonlinear photonic crystals (NPCs) are transparent materials that have a spatially uniform linear susceptibility, yet a periodically modulated quadratic nonlinear susceptibility. These engineered materials are used extensively for studying nonlinear wave dynamics and in many scientific and industrial applications. Over the past two decades, there has been a continuous effort to find a technique that will enable the construction of three-dimensional (3D) NPCs. Such capability will enable many new schemes of manipulation and control of nonlinear optical interactions.

Brexit offers the UK opportunities to strengthen its world-leading tobacco control measures, by creating greater flexibility to respond to industry action and market developments, according to new research from the University of Bath.

The UK is currently bound by EU rules, but will enjoy greater freedom to adopt types of tobacco tax that are more effective at lifting the price of cheap tobacco products, as well as more direct pricing policies such as minimum prices or the imposition of price caps. Higher prices are one of the most effective tobacco control measures.

Researchers led by Josef Lazar of the Institute of Organic Chemistry and Biochemistry of the Czech Academy of Sciences (IOCB Prague) have demonstrated that molecules of fluorescent proteins act as antennas with optical properties (i.e. the ability to absorb and emit light) dependent on their spatial orientation. First discovered in jellyfish, fluorescent proteins are nowadays widely used in studies of molecular processes in living cells and organisms. The newly described properties of these molecules will find applications in basic biological research as well as in novel drug discovery.

Plants get bacterial infections, just as humans do. When food crops and trees are infected, their yield and quality can suffer. Although some compounds have been developed to protect plants, few of them work on a wide variety of crops, and bacteria are developing resistance. Now, researchers reporting in ACS' Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry have modified natural plant alkaloids into new compounds that kill bacteria responsible for diseases in rice, kiwi and citrus.

In a study published this week in The Cryosphere, researchers from the National Centre for Atmospheric Science and University of Reading demonstrate how climate change could lead to irreversible sea level rise as temperatures continue to rise and the Greenland ice sheet continues to decline.

The massive ice sheet faces a point of no return, beyond which it will no longer fully regrow, permanently changing sea levels around the world.