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eNews from AlphaGalileo

January 2020

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Image of the month

NUS study: Common species tolerant of environmental crisis shown to have much lower genetic diversity than decades ago , National University of Singapore (NTNU)

Measures of genetic diversity of a fruit bat common in Singapore decreased 30-fold over the last 90 years. Cynopterus brachyotis, also known as the Sunda fruit bat, a common tropical fruit bat species. A team of NUS researchers have found that the effective population size and genetic diversity of Singapore’s Cynopterus brachyotis, believed to remain widely unaffected by urbanisation, has shrunk significantly qover the last 90 years – revealing that the current biodiversity crisis may be much broader than widely assumed, affecting even species thought to be common and tolerant of fragmentation and habitat loss. Photo Credit: ©2013 Simon J. Tonge

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December's Hits Parade - Top 5 items on the service

1. Does Medicaid Managed Care Impact Obstetrical Care and Birth Outcomes? published Mary Ann Liebert, Inc. on 20/12/19

A new study shows that among a set of disadvantaged women, Medicaid managed care reduces the women’s access to high-quality hospital services during pregnancy and delivery and was associated with worse birth outcomes, worse prenatal care, and a higher risk of inappropriate gestational weight gain. The specific results and their implications are reported in a study published in Journal of Women’s Health, a peer-reviewed publication from Mary Ann Liebert, Inc., publishers.

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2. Home for the Holidays – But Will Grandpa Remember Me? Now there’s Hope Hebrew University Team Finds TB Vaccine Lowers Rates of Alzheimer’s Disease in Cancer Patients published Hebrew University of Jerusalem on 23/12/19

Holidays are a time for family. Festive gatherings with parents, grandparents, aunts and uncles create memories that last a lifetime. But when a loved one has Alzheimer’s disease (AD), holidays often become painful reminders of loss and deterioration. Currently, Alzheimer’s affects one-in-ten adults over the age of 65—a number that is expected to triple by 2030. The need to find a cure is great.

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3. Emerging Role of Adenosine in Brain Disorders and Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis published by Mary Ann Liebert, Inc., Publishers, on 06/12/19

The role of adenosine in neurodegeneration and neuroregeneration has led to growing attention on adenosine receptors as potential drug targets in a range of brain disorders, including neuroregenerative therapy and treatment for amyotrophyic lateral sclerosis (ALS). These are just two areas of focus in the upcoming special issue on Adenosine and Neurodegeneration – Part II published in Journal of Caffeine and Adenosine Research, a peer-reviewed journal from Mary Ann Liebert, Inc., publishers.

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4. Developing drugs that activate defences against tumours published by Universitaet Bielefeld on 20/12/19

Over the next four years, a new project of Bielefeld University and 14 European partners will be studying targeted cancer treatments. The idea is that special molecules will track tumour cells in the body and then deliver an active agent that ensures that the cancerous cells are removed. Fifteen doctoral students will be working together in the ‘Magicbullet::Reloaded’ research network.

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5. Breaking the dogma: Key cell death regulator has more than one way to get the job done published by St. Jude Children's Research Hospital on 23/12/19

Immunologists from St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital have revealed two independent mechanisms driving self-defense molecules to trigger cell death.

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News Managers' selections

El Comité Oleícola Internacional certifica la copa roja para la cata de aceite de oliva desarrollada por la UJA y Elaia Zait 04/12/2019 University of Jaen

El Comité Oleícola Internacional (COI) ha certificado que la copa de color rojo para la cata de aceite de oliva, desarrollada por la Universidad de Jaén junto a la empresa Elaia Zait, cumple con la norma del ‘Método de valoración organoléptica del aceite de oliva virgen’ adoptado por este organismo. Dicha norma establece que “es de vidrio oscuro, lo que hace que el catador no perciba el color del aceite, impidiéndole así cualquier prejuicio y la posibilidad de crear sesgos o tendencias que afecten a la objetividad de la determinación”.

Copa de cata roja desarrollada por la UJA y Elaia Zait

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How humans learnt to dance; from the Chimpanzee Conga 12/12/2019 University of Warwick

Two chimpanzees housed in a zoo in the US have sparked the question about how human dance evolved after being observed performing a duo dance-like behaviour, similar to a human conga-line. In the paper ‘Coupled whole-body rhythmic entrainment between two chimpanzees’ published on the 12th of December in the Journal Scientific Reports, researchers led by the University of Warwick found the levels of motoric co-ordination, synchrony and rhythm between the two female chimpanzees matched the levels shown by orchestra players performing the same musical piece.

Caption: An illustration of the chimp's conga. Credit: University of Warwick

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Les câbles sous-marins : des milliards de capteurs sismiques potentiels -, 18/12/2019 -Institut de Recherche pour le Développement (IRD)

Des scientifiques montrent pour la première fois qu’il est possible de détecter la propagation d'ondes sismiques au fond des océans avec des câbles sous-marins de télécommunication. D’après leurs observations, ces infrastructures existantes pourraient être exploitées pour détecter les séismes, mais aussi la houle ou encore le bruit sous-marin.

Image caption: Animation montrant l’effet de la houle enregistré sur les huit premiers kilomètres de fibre optique.© Diane Rivet

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Schwangerschaft: Kaffee, Nikotin und Amphetamine aktivieren „Hot Spots“ im Gehirn des Ungeborenen 04/12/2019 Medical University of Vienna

Werden in der Schwangerschaft vermehrt die Psychostimulanzien Kaffee, Nikotin und Amphetamin von der werdenden Mutter eingenommen, dann erhöht sich das Risiko beim Kind für neurologische und psychiatrische Probleme. ForscherInnen vom Zentrum für Hirnforschung der MedUni Wien konnten nun jene Gehirn-Regionen identifizieren, die als „Hot Spots“ für die Psychostimulanzien fungieren und dass die Reaktionen der Mutter auf diese Stoffe ganz unterschiedlich zu jenen des Babys verlaufen. Die Studie wurde nun im Top-Journal PNAS veröffentlicht.

Klaus Reicherter von der Universität Aachen untersucht einen Felsbrocken, der von dem Tsunami auf die Klippen verfrachtet wurde. © Foto: Gösta Hoffmann/Uni Bonn

Image caption: Schwangerschaft: Kaffee, Nikotin und Amphetamine aktivieren „Hot Spots“ im Gehirn des Ungeborenen - Erhöhtes Risiko für spätere neurologische und psychiatrische Probleme

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