top ten research highlights

The following highlights are the top ten most viewed research highlights on the English website of during the past month.

21 May 2019 ~ 20 June 2019

  • Health science: Results of the integrative Human Microbiome Project

    Nature, May 30, 2019

    Overviews of how human health is affected by host and microbiome activity are presented in three papers by the integrative Human Microbiome Project (iHMP), published online in Nature and Nature Medicine this week. This initiative investigated changes in the microbiome and host in inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), prediabetes, and pregnancy and preterm birth. The findings help efforts to charact...

    Original article doi: 10.1038/s41586-019-1238-8

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  • Lung cancer identified earlier with AI

    Nature Medicine, May 21, 2019

    An artificial intelligence framework able to detect malignant lung nodules on chest computed tomography (CT) scans with performance meeting or exceeding that of expert radiologists is reported this week in Nature Medicine. This deep-learning model offers an automated image evaluation system to enhance the accuracy of early lung cancer diagnosis that could inform clinical interventions.


    Original article doi: 10.1038/s41591-019-0447-x

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  • Green monkeys respond to drones

    Nature Ecology & Evolution, May 28, 2019

    West African green monkeys produced a different hard-wired alarm call when faced with a new aerial threat and instantly learned what the new sound represented, according to a study published online this week in Nature Ecology & Evolution. This research sheds light on the evolution of complex communication systems in the animal kingdom.

    East African vervet monkeys produce alarm calls sig...

    Original article doi: 10.1038/s41559-019-0903-5

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  • Daily meditation app may improve focus and memory

    Nature Human Behaviour, June 4, 2019

    Several minutes of daily meditation training, using a closed-loop app over a 6-week period, improves the attention span of healthy young adults in a small study published online this week in Nature Human Behaviour.

    Recent research has shown that media and technology multitasking can affect on a young adult’s ability to pay attention, which can present challenges for decision-making, m...

    Original article doi: 10.1038/s41562-019-0611-9

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  • Protective mutation against HIV associated with increased mortality rate

    Nature Medicine, June 4, 2019

    Individuals who carry two copies of the Δ32 mutation of the CCR5 gene (which protects against HIV infection in Europeans) have a 21% increase in mortality rate, according to a study published in Nature Medicine this week. The results highlight the need to better understand how the unintended consequences of introducing mutations in humans may impact health.

    In 2018, Jiankui He announce...

    Original article doi: 10.1038/s41591-019-0459-6

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  • Environmental science: Location of increasing CFC-11 emissions identified

    Nature, May 23, 2019

    Emissions from eastern mainland China account for at least 40-60% of the global rise in trichlorofluoromethane (CFC-11) emissions since 2013, according to a study published in Nature this week. This rise is likely to be the result of new production and use, which is contrary to the Montreal Protocol agreement to globally phase out CFC production by 2010.

    The concentration of CFC-11 in t...

    Original article doi: 10.1038/s41586-019-1193-4

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  • Environment: Deep-sea microplastics distribution in Monterey Bay examined

    Scientific Reports, June 7, 2019

    One of the largest and currently underappreciated reservoirs of marine microplastics may exist within the pelagic zone, the deep-sea water column of the open ocean, according to a study in Monterey Bay, California, published in Scientific Reports.

    C. Anela Choy and colleagues used remotely operated vehicles and purpose-built samplers to collect and examine the distribution of microplast...

    Original article doi: 10.1038/s41598-019-44117-2

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  • Animal behaviour: First observations of chimpanzees preying on tortoises

    Scientific Reports, May 24, 2019

    The first known observations of chimpanzees preying on hinge-back tortoises are described in a study in Scientific Reports.

    Chimpanzees were previously known to hunt and consume the meat of various animals, but there have been no direct observations of tortoise predation by chimpanzees to date.

    Simone Pika and colleagues describe this behaviour in a group of wild chimpanzees of ...

    Original article doi: 10.1038/s41598-019-43301-8

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  • Engineering: ‘Smart glove’ could add a human touch to robots

    Nature, May 30, 2019

    A glove equipped with networks of sensors that can learn to identify individual objects, estimate weights and use tactile feedback while manipulating objects is reported in a paper published this week in Nature. This strategy may aid the future design of prosthetics, robotic tools and human-robot interactions.

    Humans can grasp and feel objects while simultaneously applying the correct a...

    Original article doi: 10.1038/s41586-019-1234-z

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  • Conservation: African elephant poaching in decline

    Nature Communications, May 29, 2019

    African elephant poaching rates have declined since 2011 according to an analysis published in Nature Communications. The paper reports that the decline in poaching at 53 sites across sub-Saharan Africa was correlated with changes in the demand for ivory from China. However, variation in poaching rates between the different sites was associated with indicators of corruption and poverty locally....

    Original article doi: 10.1038/s41467-019-09993-2

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