News That Matters

Tag: model

Brain model links herpes virus to development of Alzheimer’s disease

Brain model links herpes virus to development of Alzheimer’s disease

Health
May 6 (UPI) -- Bio-engineered models of the human brain infected with herpes simplex virus-1, or HSV-1, develop many of the same characteristics found in Alzheimer's disease, according to an analysis published Wednesday in the journal Science Advances. Engineers and scientists at Tufts University used a 3D human-tissue culture model designed to mimic the components and conditions of the brain to demonstrate a possible causal relationship between sporadic Alzheimer's disease and HSV-1. After infecting neurons in the brain with HSV-1, the researches observed the same amyloid plaque formation, neuronal loss, neuro-inflammation and diminished neural network functioning found in Alzheimer's disease. Treatment of the brain tissue models with the antiviral drug valacyclovir, which commonly is u...
Neuroscientists build model to identify internal brain states

Neuroscientists build model to identify internal brain states

Science
Nov. 25 (UPI) -- How humans respond to stimuli depends on not only external factors, but internal variables like mood and memory, as well. These internal brain states are invisible to the outside observer, but neuroscientists have developed a new model to predict internal brain states based on observations of outward behavior. For now, the model only works to predict the internal states of fruit flies, but it could eventually be used to better understand the relationship between human brain states and behavior. During a previous study, scientists were able to predict a portion of a male fruit fly's singing behavior by observing the insect's behavior. With the help of the new model, scientists can more accurately predict the fruit fly's seduction methods. "By estimating the fly's interna...
Scientists use 3D climate model to narrow search for habitable exoplanets

Scientists use 3D climate model to narrow search for habitable exoplanets

Science
Nov. 14 (UPI) -- For the first time, scientists used a 3D climate model that incorporates photochemistry to study the habitability of exoplanets surrounding M dwarf stars. The findings -- published Thursday in the Astrophysical Journal -- could help planetary scientists know what to look for when surveying potentially habitable exoplanets. Researchers adopted a 3D climate model, originally developed by scientists at the University of Colorado-Boulder for the study of Earth's climate, to simulate the atmospheric dynamics of faraway planets -- specifically exoplanets orbiting M dwarf stars. These stars, also called red dwarfs, give off relatively small amounts light and heat. Originally, scientists thought M dwarfs were rare, and because they're relatively cool, scientists assumed planetar...
The methane-filled lakes on Saturn’s moon Titan are explosion craters, model predicts

The methane-filled lakes on Saturn’s moon Titan are explosion craters, model predicts

Science
Sept. 9 (UPI) -- According to a new model developed by planetary scientists in Italy and the United States, many of the methane-filled lakes on Titan were likely formed after explosions of warming nitrogen left dozens of empty craters dotting the surface of Saturn's largest moon. Outside of Earth, Titan is the only planetary body in the solar system known to host stable liquid on its surface. While Earth hosts bodies of water, Titan's lakes are filled with liquid methane and ethane. On Earth, methane and ethane typically exist in gas form, but subzero temperatures on Titan allow the hydrocarbons to exist in liquid form. Previous models suggested Titan's lakes were formed over thousands of years as the liquid methane and ethane precipitated by Titan's clouds dissolving the moon's bedrock ...
Declining fertility led to Neanderthal extinction, new model suggests

Declining fertility led to Neanderthal extinction, new model suggests

Science
May 31 (UPI) -- To better understand the decline of Neanderthals, researchers in France developed a population model and used simulations to determine which demographic factors had the largest effect on Neanderthal numbers. Their analysis, published this week in the journal PLOS One, showed declining fertility offers the likeliest explanation for the disappearance of the Neanderthals. Scientists have previously suggested the Neanderthal's extinction is best explained by catastrophe, like climate change or the spread of disease. But with limited empirical evidence, such hypotheses are difficult to test. Neanderthal remains suggest the hominin species died out over a period of 4,000 to 10,000 years. To better understand this decline, researchers built a model and ran simulations to test th...