The use of salt to melt ice is a common and important practice to keep roadways safe during winter months. However, various subtypes of salt differ in their chemical and physical properties, as well as their environmental impact. In this study, the authors measure the effectiveness of different salts at disrupting ice structures and identify calcium chloride as the most effective.
Here, the authors sought to identify a method to optimize the lift generated by an airfoil based solely on its shape. By beginning with a Bernoullian model to predict an optimized wing shape, the authors then tested their model against other possible shapes by constructing them from Styrofoam and testing them in a small wind tunnel. Contrary to their hypothesis, they found their expected optimal airfoil shape did not result in the greatest lift generation. They attributed this to a variety of confounding variables and concluded that their results pointed to a correlation between airfoil shape and lift generation.
Caenorhabditis elegans xpa-1 and him-1 are orthologs of human XPA and human SMC1A, respectively. Mutations in the XPA are correlated with Xeroderma pigmentosum, a condition that induces hypersensitivity to ultraviolet (UV) radiation. Alternatively, SMC1A mutations may lead to Cornelia de Lange Syndrome, a multi-organ disorder that makes patients more sensitive to UVinduced DNA damage. Both C. elegans genes have been found to be involved in protection against UV radiation, but their combined effects have not been tested when they are both knocked down. The authors hypothesized that because these genes are involved in separate pathways, the simultaneous knockdown of both of these genes using RNA interference (RNAi) in C. elegans will cause them to become more sensitive to UV radiation than either of them knocked down individually. UV protection was measured via the percent survival of C. elegans post 365 nm and 5.4x10-19 joules of UV radiation. The double xpa-1/him-1 RNAi knockdown showed a significantly reduced percent survival after 15 and 30 minutes of UV radiation relative to wild-type and xpa-1 and him-1 single knockdowns. These measurements were consistent with their hypothesis and demonstrated that xpa-1 and him-1 genes play distinct roles in resistance against UV stress in C. elegans. This result raises the possibility that the xpa-1/him-1 double knockdown could be useful as an animal model for studying the human disease Xeroderma pigmentosum and Cornelia de Lange Syndrome.
Current drug discovery processes can cost billions of dollars and usually take five to ten years. People have been researching and implementing various computational approaches to search for molecules and compounds from the chemical space, which can be on the order of 1060 molecules. One solution involves deep generative models, which are artificial intelligence models that learn from nonlinear data by modeling the probability distribution of chemical structures and creating similar data points from the trends it identifies. Aiming for faster runtime and greater robustness when analyzing high-dimensional data, we designed and implemented a Hybrid Quantum-Classical Generative Adversarial Network (QGAN) to synthesize molecules.
Here, the authors sought to use Cladophora macroalgae as a possible antibiotic to address the growing threat of antibiotic resistance in pathogenic bacteria. However, when they observed algae extracts to be greatly contaminated with gram-negative bacteria, they adapted to explore the ability to use ultraviolet light as a bactericide. They found that treatment with ultraviolet light had a significant effect.
Fossil fuels are a limited resource; thus, it is important to explore new sources of energy. The authors examine the ability of switchgrass to produce ethanol and test the effects of pretreatment and grinding on ethanol yield.
Scientist are investigating the use of methane-consuming bacteria to aid the growing problem of rising greenhouse gas emissions. While previous studies claim that low-frequency electromagnetic fields can accelerate the growth rate of these bacteria, Chu et al. demonstrate that this fundamental ideology is not on the same wavelength with their data.
Diagnosing of Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) using tools developed in the West is challenging in the Indian setting due to a huge diversity in sociocultural and economic backgrounds. Here, the authors developed a home-based, audiovisual game app (Autest) suitable for ASD risk assessment in Indian children under 10 years of age. Ratings suggested that the tool is effective and can reduce social inhibition and facilitate assessment. Further usage and development of Autest can improve risk assessment and early intervention measures for children with ASD in India.
Here, seeking a better understanding of what determines the fluffiness of a pancake, the authors began by considering a chemical reaction that results in the production of carbon dioxide gas from recipe ingredients, specifically sodium bicarbonate or baking soda. The substitution of homemade buttermilk for milk and adding more baking soda was found to result in significantly fluffier pancakes.