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Comparing the Dietary Preference of Caenorhabditis elegans for Bacterial Probiotics vs. Escherichia coli.

Lulla et al. | Dec 18, 2020

Comparing the Dietary Preference of <i>Caenorhabditis elegans</i> for Bacterial Probiotics vs. <i>Escherichia coli</i>.

In this experiment, the authors used C. elegans as a simple model organism to observe the impact of probiotics on the human digestive system. The results of the experiments showed that the C. elegans were, on average, most present in Chobani cultures over other tested yogurts. While not statistically significant, these results still demonstrated that C. elegans might prefer Chobani cultures over other probiotic yogurts, which may also indicate greater gut benefits from Chobani over the other yogurt brands tested.

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Firearm-purchase laws that limit the number of guns on the market reduce gun homicides in the South Side of Chicago

Krishnan et al. | Jan 24, 2022

Firearm-purchase laws that limit the number of guns on the market reduce gun homicides in the South Side of Chicago

Gun violence has been a serious issue in the South Side of Chicago for a long time. To intervene, regulators have passed legislation they hoped to curb -if not completely eradicate- the issue. However, there is little analysis done on how effective the various laws have been at reducing gun violence. Here the authors explore the association between firearm purchase laws passed between 1993-2018 and the incidence of gun homicide in Chicago's South Side. Their analysis suggests that some laws have been more effective than others, while some might have exacerbated the issue. However, they do not consider other contributing factors, which makes it difficult to prove causation without further investigation.

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Cocktail therapy to inhibit multispecies biofilm in cystic fibrosis patients

Bhat et al. | Sep 22, 2022

Cocktail therapy to inhibit multispecies biofilm in cystic fibrosis patients

Here, recognizing the important role of bacterial biofilms in many life-threatening chronic infections, the authors investigated the effectiveness of a combination treatment on biofilms composed of up to three different common species within the lungs of cystic fibrosis patients with computational analysis. They found that a triple cocktail therapy targeting three different signaling pathways has significant potential as both a treatment and prophylaxis.

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Reddit v. Wall Street: Why Redditors beat Wall Street at its own game

Bhakar et al. | Sep 13, 2022

Reddit v. Wall Street: Why Redditors beat Wall Street at its own game

Here the authors investigated the motivation of a short squeeze of GameStop stock where users of the internet forum Reddit drove a sudden increase in GameStop stock price during the start of 2021. They relied on both qualitative and quantitative analyses where they tracked activity on the r/WallStreetBets subreddit in relation to mentions of GameStop. With these methods they found that while initially the short squeeze was driven by financial motivations, later on emotional motivations became more important. They suggest that social phenomena can be dynamic and evolve necessitating mixed method approaches to study them.

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Reading recall: A comparison of reading comprehension

Rudins et al. | Nov 16, 2022

Reading recall: A comparison of reading comprehension

Researchers query whether reading comprehension is the same, worse, or better when using e-books as compared with standard paper texts. This study evaluated this question in the elementary school population. Our hypothesis was that information would be retained equally whether read from paper or from an electronic device. Each participant read four stories, alternating between electronic and paper media types. After each reading, the participants completed a five-question test covering the information read. The study participants correctly answered 167 out of 200 comprehension questions when reading from an electronic device. These same participants correctly answered 145 out of 200 comprehension questions when reading from paper. At a significance level of p < 0.05, the results showed that there was a statistically significant difference in reading comprehension between the two media, demonstrating better comprehension when using electronic media. The unexpected results of this study demonstrate a shift in children’s performance and desirability of using electronic media as a reading source.

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Survival of Escherichia coli K-12 in various types of drinking water

Hanna et al. | Sep 25, 2022

Survival of <i>Escherichia coli</i> K-12 in various types of drinking water

For public health, drinking water should be free of bacterial contamination. The objective of this research is to identify the fate of bacteria if drinking water becomes contaminated and inform consumers on which water type enables the least bacteria to survive. We hypothesized that bottled mineral water would provide the most sufficient conditions for E. coli to survive. We found that if water becomes contaminated, the conditions offered by the three water types at room temperature allow E. coli to survive up to three days. At 72 hours, the bottled spring water had the highest average colony forming units (CFUs), with tap and mineral water CFU values statistically lower than spring water but not significantly different from each other. The findings of this research highlight the need of implementing accessible quality drinking water for the underserved population and for the regulation of water sources.

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Examining the Accuracy of DNA Parentage Tests Using Computer Simulations and Known Pedigrees

Wang et al. | Jul 13, 2020

Examining the Accuracy of DNA Parentage Tests Using Computer Simulations and Known Pedigrees

How accurate are DNA parentage tests? In this study, the authors hypothesized that current parentage tests are reliable if the analysis involves only one or a few families of yellow perch fish Perca flavescens. Their results suggest that DNA parentage tests are reliable as long as the right methods are used, since these tests involve only one family in most cases, and that the results from parentage analyses of large populations can only be used as a reference.

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Attitudes towards mental health in Indians who practice yoga regularly and those who do not

Komar et al. | Jul 13, 2022

Attitudes towards mental health in Indians who practice yoga regularly and those who do not

Whether it is through implicit association or intentional practice, yoga has been known to help individuals maintain good mental health. However, many communities, such as South Asian communities, often project the stereotype that embodies neglecting topics such as mental health and considering them taboo. In this online survey-based study, the authors focused on examining whether yoga would alter individuals’ attitudes toward mental health. They hypothesized that 1) participants who regularly practiced yoga would be more familiar with the term mental health, 2) participants who practiced yoga would value their mental health more, and 3) participants who practiced yoga regularly would be more open about their mental health and be more likely to reach out for professional help if needed. They did not find a statistical significance for any of our hypotheses which suggests that yoga may not have an effect on perceptions of mental health in yoga-practicing Indian adults.

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