The FAA has extended funding for the Maryland Smith-supported consortium that has developed decision support tools, operational and system concepts, and policymaking tools that benefit the FAA, the airline industry and the flying public.
Fentanyl is not typically part of hospital tests for illicit drug use, however, a new University of Maryland study found after expanding testing that fentanyl, linked to most fatal overdoses in Maryland, tops the list of drugs detected in overdose patients at two Baltimore hospital ERs. The researchers suggest addition of fentanyl to routine drug tests.
A new report from the Johns Hopkins Center for Gun Policy and Research at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health finds that broad “stop-and-search” practices used for many years by Baltimore police to look for illegally possessed guns have minimal, if any, impact on gun violence. These practices also result in mental and physical harm to those who are unjustifiably searched and serve to undermine community trust in police. The researchers also found that residents of communities most impacted by gun violence in Baltimore want more focused and accountable law enforcement to reduce gun violence.
Mathematician Shankar Venkataramani’s research group recently discovered a lot of new, powerful geometries involved in frilly surfaces, which he will describe at the 2019 APS March Meeting. For mathematicians, frilly is plain language for an inflected nonsmooth surface -- one that changes the direction in which it bends, such as with kale or coral. Venkataramani’s group developed the mathematics to describe these surfaces, and the combination of new geometry insights and age-old slugs might just be the right combination for a new generation of flexible, energy-efficient soft-bodied robots.
A new APS report, “The Impact of Industrial Physics on the U.S. Economy,” shows the significant role of physics, which contributed an estimated $2.3 trillion (12.6 percent of U.S. GDP) in 2016 alone. Industrial physics encompasses the application of physics knowledge and principles to the design and manufacture of products and services. Many people working within this field have job titles other than physicist, so this report includes all aspects of industrial physics contributions.
Researchers have created tiny functional, remote-powered, walking robots, developing a multistep nanofabrication technique that turns a 4-inch specialized silicon wafer into a million microscopic robots in just weeks. Each one of a robot’s four legs is just under 100-atoms-thick, but powered by laser light hitting the robots’ solar panels, they propel the tiny robots. The researchers are now working on smart versions of the robots that could potentially make incredible journeys in the human body.
The latest data from the giant planets has sent researchers back to the drawing board. Cassini orbited Saturn for 13 years before its dramatic final dive into the planet’s interior, while Juno has been orbiting Jupiter for two and a half years; the data collected has been “invaluable but also confounding,” said David Stevenson from Caltech, who will present an update of both missions at the 2019 APS March Meeting in Boston. Innovative design that protected the instruments from fierce radiation and powered the mission on solar energy alone has reaped plenty of surprises.
Solar cells offer a clean source of energy, but the efficiency of a fixed solar system is limited: The sun moves, but solar cells do not. Beth Parks has devised an astonishingly simple way to overcome this limitation -- a bucket of water. As she will describe at the 2019 APS March Meeting, she developed a frame that holds the solar cell with a bucket suspended on either end. By controlling the leak of water from one of the buckets, the solar cell shifts, tracking the arc of the sun throughout the day.
Knitting may be an ancient manufacturing method, but Elisabetta Matsumoto believes that understanding how different stitch types determine shape and mechanical strength will be invaluable for designing materials for future technologies, and a more detailed understanding of the knitting “code” could benefit manufacturers around the world. Members of the Matsumoto group are delving through the surprisingly complex mathematics that underlies tangles of yarn -- work Matsumoto will describe at the 2019 APS March Meeting.
Humans have a knack for finding patterns in the world around them. Researchers are building a model that shows how this ability might work, which they will describe at the 2019 APS March Meeting. The brain does more than just process incoming information, the researchers say. It constantly tries to predict what’s coming next. The new model attempts to explain how people can make such predictions.
Incorporating the arts—rapping, dancing, drawing—into science lessons can help low-achieving students retain more knowledge and possibly help students of all ability levels be more creative in their learning, finds a new study by Johns Hopkins University.
A new frontier in the study of magnetic materials, femtomagnetism, could lead to ultrafast magnetic storage devices that would transform information processing technologies. Now, researchers report a tabletop method to characterize such a faster magnetic storage using high-harmonic generation of laser light in iron thin films. Their work, which Guoping Zhang will present at the 2019 APS March Meeting, has the same vision as quantum technology.
Princeton researchers are exploring how cooperation arises in human societies, where people tend to cluster into various group types -- political, religious, familial, professional, etc. -- which they will describe at the 2019 APS March Meeting. Within such groups, people can cooperate or “defect” and receive payoffs based on those exchanges. Cooperation, they observed, is most favored when allowing for the existence of “loners” -- people who are temporarily not members of any group.
Researchers have analyzed the real-time effect of a large-scale hack on automobiles in a major urban environment. Using percolation theory, they analyzed how a large, disseminated hack on automobiles would affect traffic flow in New York City, and they found that it could create citywide gridlock. However, based on these findings the team also developed a risk-mitigation strategy to prevent mass urban disruption -- work they will describe at the 2019 APS March Meeting.
Theory suggests that metallic hydrogen should be a superconductor at room temperature; however, this material has yet to be produced in the lab. Metal superhydrides are packed with hydrogen atoms in a configuration similar to the structure of metallic hydrogen. Models predict they should behave similarly. Samples of superhydrides of lanthanum have been made and tested, and at the 2019 APS March Meeting in Boston, Russell Hemley will describe his group’s work studying the material.
Because cracks propagate quickly, studying the fracturing process -- which can tell us a lot about the materials and the physics involved -- currently requires expensive high-speed cameras. A new imaging method known as the virtual frame technique allows ordinary digital cameras to capture millions of frames per second for several seconds, requiring only a short and intense pulse of light. At the 2019 APS March Meeting, researchers will describe how the virtual frame technique would allow direct imaging of fracturing and other material surface processes.
Medical practitioners commonly treat organs in isolation, but Boston University physicist Plamen Ivanov wants to usher in a new paradigm. As he will describe at the 2019 APS March Meeting, “It’s time to view health and disease not only from the perspective of individual organs but from the point of view of their integration,” he said. “We need to show how the different systems communicate with each other and stay in sync.” Ivanov calls the field he’s pioneering “network physiology.”
A popular theme in the movies is that of an incoming asteroid that could extinguish life on the planet, and our heroes are launched into space to blow it up. But incoming asteroids may be harder to break than scientists previously thought, finds a Johns Hopkins study that used a new understanding of rock fracture and a new computer modeling method to simulate asteroid collisions.
To investigate how shortfin mako sharks achieve their impressive speeds, researchers tested real sharkskin samples, using digital particle image velocimetry. They discovered that a “passive bristling” capability of the microscopic surface geometry of the shark’s scales controlled flow separation, which causes pressure drag -- the most influential cause of drag on aircraft. The work will be described at the 2019 APS March Meeting, and could lead to new designs to reduce drag on aircraft.
For best chances of in vitro fertilization success, the most motile sperm are chosen from semen. But current methods of sperm selection are inefficient and can cause fragmentation of the precious DNA carried in sperm heads. Afrouz Ataei has developed an alternative mechanism to sort sperm, which avoids genetic damage while also being faster and more cost-effective. Ataei will describe the device at the 2019 APS March Meeting in Boston.
Researchers at the University of Maryland School of Medicine have discovered a mechanism for how androgens -- male sex steroids -- sculpt brain development. The research, conducted by Margaret M. McCarthy, Ph.D., who Chairs the Department of Pharmacology, could ultimately help researchers understand behavioral development differences between males and females.
Researchers at the University of Illinois College of Medicine find that TRPM8, long ago identified as a cold-temperature sensor, regulates aggressive and hypersexual behavior in response to testosterone
Researchers at the University of Colorado Boulder study fast-growing python hearts, which could provide insights to aid those with diseased heart growth. Their latest work reveals ways to study python heart cells.
Researchers at Imperial College London created a bioreactor to allow heart tissue to experience mechanical forces in sync with the beats, like it would in the body, to study the mechanics of healthy and diseased hearts.
A U.S.-funded initiative to improve quality of care and referrals during pregnancy and childbirth in Indonesia resulted in significant reductions in maternal and newborn mortality at participating hospitals, according to a new study led by scientists at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health.
A new Johns Hopkins study offers promise towards someday being able to non-invasively examine changes in cancerous tumors to determine whether they’ll respond to radiation treatment, before treatment even begins.
Researchers at Rockefeller University characterized a molecular spring attached to the membrane of inner ear cells that converts bending forces created by a sound wave to electrical signals that the brain can interpret.
Researchers at the University of Oslo find that when lipids land on a surface they form tiny cell-like containers without external input, and that large organic molecules similar in size to DNA’s building blocks can spontaneously enter these protocells while they grow. Both of these are crucial steps towards forming a functioning cell.
“Teaching Tomorrow’s Scientists: An ASCB Regional Meeting” is a day-long meeting that will include education research and scientific plenaries, a poster session, networking lunch, afternoon workshops, and mixer.
BETHESDA, MD (February 27, 2019) – The American College of Gastroenterology (ACG) is pleased to announce the publication of the ACG Clinical Guideline on Ulcerative Colitis (UC) in Adults, which was published online today in The American Journal of Gastroenterology and which serves as an update to the College’s 2010 UC guideline.
By sequencing the entire genomes of tumor cells from six people with a rare cancer of the nose and sinus cavity, Johns Hopkins researchers report they unexpectedly found the same genetic changeone in a gene involved in muscle formationin five of the tumors.
Around 40-60% of healthy adults carry around the fungus Candida albicans in their mouth or guts; in immunocompromised people, however, this normally harmless cohabitant becomes a deadly pathogen. A report in the journal GENETICS describes the genomes of three Candida albicans strains isolated from the barks of oak trees in an ancient wood pasture, providing genetic evidence that this yeast can live on plants for extended periods of time.
For nanomedicine to achieve the envisioned breakthroughs in disease treatment, scientists must learn why the immune system often responds inhospitably to these therapies. An NIH-funded team at the University of Colorado (UC) has assembled a clearer picture of the molecular activity that occurs when nanoparticles injected into the body are marked for immune system attack.
Salisbury University has signed the first agreements with prospective industrial hemp growers under a new Maryland Department of Agriculture pilot program to legalize the crop with a university research component.
The Johns Hopkins Center for Communication Programs (CCP) has been awarded the U.S. Agency for International Development’s newest five-year, $35 million global knowledge management project. CCP is based at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health.
Edward J. Benz Jr., MD, joins the Johns Hopkins School of Nursing (JHSON) Nursing Advisory Board bringing extensive experience and perspective as a leader in academia, internal medicine, mentorship, and research. He is the Richard and Susan Smith Distinguished Professor of Medicine and Professor of Pediatrics and Genetics at Harvard Medical School, President and CEO Emeritus for the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and Director Emeritus of the Dana Farber/Harvard Cancer Center.
Precision medicine is a focus of ongoing debate. In an environment of limited research funds, there are those who believe that precision medicine should be funded because it will improve population health, and those who feel that it shouldn’t, because it won’t. In a viewpoint published Jan. 28 in the Journal of Clinical Investigation, experts at Johns Hopkins call for a redefinition of precision medicine to ensure its success, and propose a new approach.
A small, retrospective study has found that, in patients with particular pancreatic duct lesions, the presence of an inherited mutation in a pancreatic cancer susceptibility gene may increase the patients’ risk of developing pancreatic cancer. To verify these results and learn more about the development of this deadly cancer, the researchers recommend more genetic studies. Their hope—in line with the goals of precision medicine—is to eventually find a better way to guide patient care, dividing patients, for example, into those who need regular screening versus immediate surgery or other early interventions.
Richard W. Thomas, MD, DDS, president of the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, will be inducted into the West Virginia University Academy of Distinguished Alumni (www.alumni.wvu.edu/give-back/awards/academy-of-distinguished-alumni), joining notable WVU graduates like best-selling author Stephen Coonts, comedic actor Don Knotts, NBA star Jerry West, and NASA astrophysicist Dr. Katherine Weaver.
In a study of older people with no clinical diagnosis or signs of dementia when hospitalized to repair hip fractures, Johns Hopkins researchers say they found biomarkers of Alzheimer’s disease in most of the patients’ spinal fluid samples. The researchers say results of their study add to evidence that brain alterations that lead to poor balance in older people may underpin both increased risk of hip-fracturing falls and Alzheimer’s disease, and that hip fracture itself may therefore serve as a first sign of undiagnosed disease.