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The Impact of Age on Post-Concussive Symptoms: A Comparative Study of Symptoms Related and Not Related to the Default Mode Network

Wurscher et al. | Mar 05, 2017

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The Default Mode Network (DMN) is a network of connected brain regions that are active when the brain is not focused on external tasks. Minor brain injuries, such as concussions, can affect this network and manifest symptoms. In this study, the authors examined correlations between DMN age and post-concussion symptoms in previously concussed individuals and healthy controls.

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Extroverts as Materialists: Correlating Personality Traits, Materialism, and Spending Behavior

Jackson et al. | Feb 19, 2017

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The authors investigated the relationship between personality traits and adolescent materialism, as well as how materialism relates to spending habits. Results indicate that extroversion was positively correlated with materialism, and that adolescents' purchases were affected by the purchasing behaviors of their friends or peers. Moreover, materialistic youth were more likely than non-materialistic youth to spend money on themselves when given a hypothetical windfall of $500.

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Phytoplankton Plastid Proteomics: Cracking open Diatoms to Understand Plastid Biochemistry under Iron Limitation

Nunn et al. | Feb 10, 2017

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In many areas of the world’s oceans, diatoms such as Thalassiosira pseudonana are limited in growth by the availability of iron (Fe), which is an essential nutrient for diatoms. The authors of this study examined if Fe-limitation makes a significant difference in the proteins expressed within the chloroplast, the power source for diatoms, utilizing a new plastid isolation technique specific to diatoms and completing 14 mass spectrometry experiments.

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Do Initial Strategies or Choice of Piece Color Lead to Advantages in Chess Games?

Ponnaluri et al. | Feb 07, 2017

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White pieces make the first move in chess games, and there are several opening strategies and consequent defense strategies that white and black pieces, respectively, can take . The author of this paper investigated whether taking a specific opening and defense strategy, as well as playing as white vs. black, can increase the chances of winning the game, by playing against various human and computer opponents.

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Bacteroides thetaiotaomicron Growth Numbers are Unchanged in the Presence of Yogurt

Phan et al. | Dec 29, 2016

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Disruptions to the microbiome, specifically the imbalance in the two major phyla, the Firmicutes and the Bacteroidetes, have been linked to the development of obesity. This study explored whether or not Fage plain total 0% Greek yogurt, which contains live and active bacterial cultures belonging to the Firmicute phylum, could decrease the numbers of Bacteroides thetaiotaomicron, an organism found in the human gut that belongs to the Bacteroidetes phylum.

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The Effect of Common Cations on DNA Degradation

Larina et al. | Nov 06, 2016

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Heating of DNA-containing solutions is a part of many experiment protocols, but it can also cause damage and degradation of the DNA molecules, potentially leading to error in the experimental results. The authors of this paper investigate whether the presence of certain cations during heating can stabilize the DNA polymer and aid the preservation of the molecule.

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Evolution of Neuroplastin-65

Cremers et al. | Oct 26, 2016

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Human intelligence is correlated with variation in the protein neuroplastin-65, which is encoded by the NPTN gene. The authors examine the evolution of this gene across different animal species.

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Bacterial Richness of Soil Samples from Southern New Hampshire

Chalasani et al. | Sep 21, 2016

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Advancement in DNA sequencing technology has greatly increased our understanding about the role of bacteria in soil. The authors of this study examine the microbial content of soil samples taken from three locations in southern New Hampshire with varying pH and plant composition.

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Molecular Alterations in a High-Fat Mouse Model Before the Onset of Diet–Induced Nonalcoholic Fatty Liver Disease

Lee et al. | Sep 20, 2016

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Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is one of the most prevalent chronic liver diseases worldwide, but there are few studied warning signs for early detection of the disease. Here, researchers study alterations that occur in a mouse model of NAFLD, which indicate the onset of NAFLD sooner. Earlier detection of diseases can lead to better prevention and treatment.

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The Emergence of Tetracycline Resistance in Rumen Bacteria

Memili et al. | Sep 16, 2016

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The emergence of antibiotic-resistant pathogenic bacteria is a major concern for human health, rendering some antibiotics ineffective in treating diseases. The authors of this study tested the hypothesis that exposing rumen bacteria to tetracycline will gradually lead to the development of tetracycline-resistant bacteria, some of which will develop multidrug resistance.

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Peptidomimetics Targeting the Polo-box Domain of Polo-like Kinase 1

Jang et al. | Aug 19, 2016

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Polo-like kinase 1 (Plk1) is a master regulator of mitosis, initiating key steps of cell cycle regulation, and its overexpression is associated with certain types of cancer. In this study, the authors carefully designed peptides that were able to bind to Plk1 at a location that is important for its proper localization and function. Future studies could further develop these peptides to selectively target Plk1 in cancer cells and induce mitotic arrest.

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Purification of Water by Aloe

Sharma et al. | Aug 19, 2016

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The authors test the ability of aloe vera gel to purify water of four separate contaminants. Aloe reduced the levels of copper, iron, and phosphate, but not nitrate. Potential applications of this purification system are discussed.

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