Tech

Researchers have identified a total of four cases of newborn babies with COVID-19 infection in China. In all cases the babies experienced only mild symptoms with none requiring intensive care or mechanical ventilation according to research published in in the European Respiratory Journal today (Thursday). [2]

The study was carried out by Dr Zhi-Jiang Zhang and colleagues at Wuhan University in China. The team report that all four babies were born to mothers with COVID-19 and all were delivered by caesarean section. Three were separated from their mothers at birth.

Probiotic bacteria that have been killed by heat can significantly improve symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) compared to placebo, and are not associated with any safety risk, according to a new 12-week, randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled clinical trial with 443 patients published in The Lancet Gastroenterology & Hepatology journal.

Timing is everything. A fresh example supporting the old saying has been found in connection with the systems regulated by biological clocks.

There is plenty of scientific evidence that the health of a mother can impact the health of her child. Now a Northwestern University study flips that relationship around: Researchers have discovered the health of the fertilized embryo determines the functional health of the mother, which has implications for healthy aging, stress resilience and suppression of protein damage.

Essentially, a bad egg does good by protecting the mother from cellular stress, ensuring she lives longer and is healthy enough to produce the next generation.

Emitting light from silicon has been the 'Holy Grail' in the microelectronics industry for decades. Solving this puzzle would revolutionize computing, as chips will become faster than ever. Researchers from Eindhoven University of Technology now succeeded: they have developed an alloy with silicon that can emit light. The results have been published in the journal Nature. The team will now start creating a silicon laser to be integrated into current chips.

For years, scientists have looked for ways to cool molecules down to ultracold temperatures, at which point the molecules should slow to a crawl, allowing scientists to precisely control their quantum behavior. This could enable researchers to use molecules as complex bits for quantum computing, tuning individual molecules like tiny knobs to carry out multiple streams of calculations at a time.

While scientists have super-cooled atoms, doing the same for molecules, which are more complex in their behavior and structure, has proven to be a much bigger challenge.

Greek and Norwegian researchers have conducted a study on the health conditions in six refugee camps in Greece.

"We found high levels of trauma," says Professor Terje A. Eikemo.

He heads the Centre for Global Health Inequalities Research (CHAIN) at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU). CHAIN collaborated with the National Center for Social Research in Athens, and others, to survey refugee health.

WASHINGTON, April 8, 2020 -- Crooner Bing Crosby knew a thing or two about sound. In 1947, recognizing that recorded music sounded better on magnetic reel-to-reel tape than on vinyl records, he invested in a company to develop equipment to record his radio shows. Soon, reel-to-reel tapes and recording and playback machines were a household craze. Now, as reel-to-reel tapes make a comeback among audio buffs, scientists are unraveling the secret of why some decades-old tapes are unplayable, while others retain their original superb audio fidelity.

A team of scientists at Friedrich-Alexander Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg (FAU) has developed a novel mechanical cleaning method for surfaces on the nanoscale. The technique successfully removes even the tiniest contaminants down to the atomic scale, achieving an unprecedented level of cleanliness. The results of this study led by Prof. Dr. Erdmann Spiecker from the Department of Materials Science at FAU have now been published in the prestigious journal Nature Communications.

World's smallest broom

Research findings suggest gut microbes can effect allergic immune responses. Tasuku Ogita who has recently joined Shinshu University is an expert on teas and their effects on gut bacteria. In this study, his team looked at green tea and the abundance of Flavonifractor plautii (FP) bacteria found in the gut. FP has been reported to be a part of the catechin metabolism in the intestines. Catechin is an antioxidant found in a variety of foods including green tea, of which 30 to 42% of its dry weight is catechin.

Amsterdam, NL, April 8, 2020 - Clinical neuropsychology and psychology have evolved as diagnostic and treatment-oriented disciplines necessary for individuals with neurological, psychiatric, and medical conditions.

Someday, microbial cyborgs -- bacteria combined with electronic devices -- could be useful in fuel cells, biosensors and bioreactors. But first, scientists need to develop materials that not only nurture the microbes, but also efficiently and controllably harvest the electricity or other resources they make. Now, researchers reporting in ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces have developed one such material that enabled them to create a programmable "biohybrid" system that conducts electrons from electricity-producing (exoelectrogenic) bacteria.

As the coronavirus pandemic claims lives and overwhelms health care systems throughout the world, scientists are closely watching several late-stage trials of the antiviral drug remdesivir. Developed to treat Ebola, remdesivir is now being tested against COVID-19. However, many infectious disease experts caution that the trials are unlikely to yield clear-cut results, according to an article in Chemical & Engineering News (C&EN), the weekly newsmagazine of the American Chemical Society. 

GAINESVILLE, Fla. --- The bright chirp of the coquí frog, the national symbol of Puerto Rico, has likely resounded through Caribbean forests for at least 29 million years.

A new study published in Biology Letters describes a fragmented arm bone from a frog in the genus Eleutherodactylus, also known as rain frogs or coquís. The fossil is the oldest record of frogs in the Caribbean and, fittingly, was discovered on the island where coquís are most beloved.

Pregnant women who deliver early are more likely to have a diverse community of vaginal bacteria, finds a new study published in Frontiers in Microbiology. These findings also highlight specific bacteria associated with premature birth and could help identify the women most at risk of giving birth prematurely.