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Herbal Extracts Alter Amyloid Beta Levels in SH-SY5Y Neuroblastoma Cells

Xu et al. | Feb 25, 2020

Herbal Extracts Alter Amyloid Beta Levels in SH-SY5Y Neuroblastoma Cells

Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is a type of dementia that affects more than 5.5 million Americans, and there are no approved treatments that can delay the advancement of the disease. In this work, Xu and Mitchell test the effects of various herbal extracts (bugleweed, hops, sassafras, and white camphor) on Aβ1-40 peptide levels in human neuroblastoma cells. Their results suggest that bugleweed may have the potential to reduce Aβ1-40 levels through its anti-inflammatory properties.

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Testing Different Polymers and Boron Nitride Nanotube Properties in Fabrication of Ion-selective Membranes

Yi et al. | Sep 28, 2020

Testing Different Polymers and Boron Nitride Nanotube Properties in Fabrication of Ion-selective Membranes

One largely untapped source of clean energy is the use of osmotic gradients where freshwater and saltwater are mixed, for example at estuaries. To harness such energy, charge-selective membranes are needed to separate the anions and cations in saltwater, establishing an electric potential like a battery. The objective of this study was twofold: to investigate the creation of the polymer matrix and test the properties of boron nitride nanotubes, as both are essential in the creation of an ion-selective membrane. Out of three polymer samples tested in this study, the mixture known as Soltech 704 showed the best resistance to etching, as well as the highest UV cure rate.

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Mitigating microplastic exposure from water consumption in junior high students and teachers

Chow et al. | May 10, 2024

Mitigating microplastic exposure from water consumption in junior high students and teachers
Image credit: Pixabay

Microplastics (MPs) are inorganic material that have been observed within items destined for human consumption, including water, and may pose a potential health hazard. Here we estimated the average amount of MPs junior high students and teachers consumed from different water sources and determined whether promoting awareness of microplastic (MP) exposure influenced choice of water source and potential MPs consumed.

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Analysis of electrodialysis as a method of producing potable water

Shen et al. | May 03, 2024

Analysis of electrodialysis as a method of producing potable water

Here, seeking a way to convert the vast quantity of seawater to drinking water, the authors investigated the purification of seawater to drinking water through electrodialysis. Using total dissolved solids (TDS) as their measure, they found that electrodialysis was able to produce deionized water with TDS values under the acceptable range for consumable water.

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Enhancing marine debris identification with convolutional neural networks

Wahlig et al. | Apr 03, 2024

Enhancing marine debris identification with convolutional neural networks
Image credit: The authors

Plastic pollution in the ocean is a major global concern. Remotely Operated Vehicles (ROVs) have promise for removing debris from the ocean, but more research is needed to achieve full effectiveness of the ROV technology. Wahlig and Gonzales tackle this issue by developing a deep learning model to distinguish trash from the environment in ROV images.

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Investigating ecosystem resiliency in different flood zones of south Brooklyn, New York

Ng et al. | Mar 23, 2024

Investigating ecosystem resiliency in different flood zones of south Brooklyn, New York
Image credit: Ng and Zheng et al 2024

With climate change and rising sea levels, south Brooklyn is exposed to massive flooding and intense precipitation. Previous research discovered that flooding shifts plant species distribution, decreases soil pH, and increases salt concentration, nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium levels. The authors predicted a decreasing trend from Zone 1 to 6: high-pH, high-salt, and high-nutrients in more flood-prone areas to low-pH, low-salt, and low-nutrient in less flood-prone regions. They performed DNA barcoding to identify plant species inhabiting flood zones with expectations of decreasing salt tolerance and moisture uptake by plants' soil from Zones 1-6. Furthermore, they predicted an increase in invasive species, ultimately resulting in a decrease in biodiversity. After barcoding, they researched existing information regarding invasiveness, ideal soil, pH tolerance, and salt tolerance. They performed soil analyses to identify pH, nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P), and potassium (K) levels. For N and P levels, we discovered a general decreasing trend from Zone 1 to 6 with low and moderate statistical significance respectively. Previous studies found that soil moisture can increase N and P uptake, helping plants adopt efficient resource-use strategies and reduce water stress from flooding. Although characteristics of plants were distributed throughout all zones, demonstrating overall diversity, the soil analyses hinted at the possibility of a rising trend of plants adapting to the increase in flooding. Future expansive research is needed to comprehensively map these trends. Ultimately, investigating trends between flood zones and the prevalence of different species will assist in guiding solutions to weathering climate change and protecting biodiversity in Brooklyn.

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