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Life Sciences - Environment - 22.12.2021
Greater diversity of Iberian spiders previously unknown
Greater diversity of Iberian spiders previously unknown
Populations of peninsular spiders that make aerial spider webs and move around the air by ballooning (using the silk threads as parachutes) present a more homogeneous genetics structure and are better connected between them. However, species of nocturnal spiders, which hunt on the ground and have a low dispersal capacity, show less genetically connected populations and are more vulnerable to local extinction processes due to environmental factors.

Life Sciences - Environment - 20.12.2021
Space and time: how to better understand biological processes in plants
Space and time: how to better understand biological processes in plants
If the perspective of space and time is not properly applied to plant research, the understanding of biological processes is limited as well as the response to the threats that endanger the life of plants worldwide. This is one of the main conclusions of an article published in the journal Trends in Plant Science by Professor Sergi Munné-Bosch, from the Faculty of Biology , the Biodiversity Research Institute ( IRBio ) and the Institute for Nutrition and Food Safety ( INSA ) of the UB.

Physics - Health - 20.12.2021
An aptasensor has been designed to detect the SARS-CoV-2 virus in saliva
Scientists at the Universidad Carlos III de Madrid (UC3M) have developed the first photo-electrochemical aptasensor that detects the SARS-CoV-2 virus in a saliva sample. This sensor, which uses aptamers (a type of artificial antibody), is more sensitive that antigen-based sensors and detects the virus more quickly and cheaply than PCR tests.

Social Sciences - 17.12.2021
Researchers write the first global report on sexual violence in Spain
Researchers write the first global report on sexual violence in Spain
UB researchers have written, required by the Spanish Ministry of Home Affairs, a report on sexual violence in Spain which gathers and analyses the existing data in order to provide a global view of the phenomenon. The authors of the study used official figures, such as the number of reports and sentences, and several published surveys and researches on this issue, among other sources.

Astronomy / Space Science - 14.12.2021
Unveiling substructures at the edge of the Galaxy
Unveiling substructures at the edge of the Galaxy
An international team of astronomers led by researcher Chervin Laporte of the Institute of Cosmos Sciences of the University of Barcelona (ICCUB-IEEC) has revealed a new map of the Milky Way's outer disc using data from the Gaia space misison. The findings have been published in the journal Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society .

Psychology - Computer Science - 14.12.2021
Voice assistants could be used for life coaching
Researchers from UPF and the UAB have developed a conversational agent for life coaching with very positive results. Life coaching is a process in which a life coach helps a person to identify and achieve the most important goals for them personally and professionally. The idea is to provide the person with tools and show them attitudes that allow them to take control of their decision and make it a reality.

Environment - 09.12.2021
A system that combines solar energy and a chemical reactor to get more from biomass has been designed
Researchers at the Universidad Carlos III de Madrid (UC3M) and the University of Rome "Tor Vergata" (Italy) have designed a new system that allows more to be got from biomass (such as forest and agricultural waste) thanks to a chemical reactor that works with a small solar power facility. Biological waste contains a large amount of energy, if used properly.

Innovation - Life Sciences - 03.12.2021
New gene-writing technology to obtain more effective and safe therapies developed
The technology has been developed by researchers from the Translational Synthetic Biology Laboratory at UPF led by Dr. Marc Güell. Find Cut-and-Transfer (FiCAT) is a tool capable of accurately writing small and large genes.

Life Sciences - Health - 02.12.2021
A new perspective of the key moments of embryonic development
Alfonso Martínez Arias, head of the Stembryo Engineering Lab at UPF, participates in a review published in Science in which the authors offer offer a new perspective of the role of a structure in embryonic development known as the primitive streak. In a review published in the journal Science , the researchers Guojun Sheng (Kumamoto University, Japan), Alfonso Martínez Arias (UPF) and Ann Sutherland (University of Virginia Health System, USA) offer a new perspective of the role of a structure in embryonic development known as the primitive streak.

Economics / Business - 02.12.2021
Facebook advertising can be targeted at a specific person
Facebook advertising can be targeted at a specific person
A piece of research undertaken by scientists at the Universidad Carlos III de Madrid (UC3M) and the Graz University of Technology (Austria) shows that an advertising campaign on Facebook can target a specific person, with the campaign being based only on four unique interests assigned to the user by the social network.

Health - Computer Science - 01.12.2021
A new system for analysing thoracic CT scans with deep learning enables COVID-19 lesion detection
A new system for analysing thoracic CT scans with deep learning enables COVID-19 lesion detection
A new automated system that involves deep learning technology enables the detection of COVID-19 lesion via the analysis of a computed tomography (CT) scan. This system, described in a study published in the journal Computers in Biology and Medicine, has been carried out by researchers of the UB, the EURECAT Technology Centre of Catalonia, and the Computing Vision Center (CVC).

Life Sciences - 29.11.2021
Another step forward in the fight against lower back pain: integrating computer experiments and methods
Research by Laura Baumgartner of the BCN MedTech Unit combines experimental research with mathematical and computational techniques to predict intervertebral disc degeneration. Lower back pain is the most widespread musculoskeletal problem in the population, with a huge economic and social impact. According to data for 2017 , years of living with disability due to lower back pain have increased by more than 50% since 1990, especially in lowand middle-income countries.

Physics - 29.11.2021
Breaking the symmetry of sound waves allows the sound to be directed to a certain place
Research undertaken by the Universidad Carlos III de Madrid (UC3M) has concluded that sound can be directed to a certain place if the sound waves' symmetry is broken. In order to carry out this work, recently published in the Nature journal, researchers used the whispering gallery phenomenon, a circular, vaulted room in which you can hear what is being said in a specific part of the room from anywhere, even if it is being whispered.

Health - Life Sciences - 25.11.2021
Presence of murine coronavirus in Canary Islands mice population
Presence of murine coronavirus in Canary Islands mice population
A study published in Frontiers in Veterinary Science reveals the presence of murine coronavirus -the murine hepatitis virus or M-CoV- in mice of the Canary archipelago that could have reached the islands by maritime transport from the European continent. This is the first ecoepidemiological study to examine the presence of coronaviruses that circulate in mice and rats of the natural and urban environment of the islands of La Palma, El Hierro, Tenerife and Lanzarote.

Life Sciences - Health - 17.11.2021
Matters of the Heart
Matters of the Heart
The cover of this week's edition of Nature , with the eye-catching title "Matters of the heart", features a basic research study carried out exclusively by the Research Group on Evolution and Development (Evo-Devo) of the Genetics Section of the Faculty of Biology of the UB. The study deciphers one of the remaining enigmas about the transition between free and sedentary lifestyle in the ancestors of our own phylum: chordates.

Health - Pharmacology - 12.11.2021
Presentation of the first personalized virtual planning and navigation system for craniosynostosis surgery
Hospital Gregorio Marañón and Universidad Carlos III de Madrid (UC3M) have presented a navigation system that will improve planning, precision, and personalisation in surgical correction of craniosynostosis (a congenital defect causing cranial malformations). Developed by doctors and engineers from both institutions, it combines surgical navigation, three-dimensional photography, and augmented reality so that surgeons can estimate and correct the position of bone fragments during surgery.

Life Sciences - Environment - 12.11.2021
Research on the only skeleton of a calf of straight-tusked elephant in Europe
Research on the only skeleton of a calf of straight-tusked elephant in Europe
UB researchers Montserrat Sanz and Joan Daura have studied the only remains of a calf in Europe, a species known as the straight-tusked elephant: Palaeoloxodon antiquus . The study has been carried out jointly with Maria Rita Palombo, of the Sapienza University of Rome and researcher at the Institute of Environmental Geology and Geoengineering of the National Research Council of Italy (CNR).

Agronomy / Food Science - 11.11.2021
Artificial smell to control food quality
Artificial smell to control food quality
A team led by Santiago Marco, professor at the Department of Electronic Engineering of the UB and member of IBEC, has optimised the use of a technique that analyses, at a molecular level, the present substances in the aroma of food. Therefore, it differentiates, among Iberian ham samples, those pigs that had been fed with acorn and those fed with feed.

Environment - Life Sciences - 11.11.2021
Complex behaviour of sea urchins regarding the predators' threat
Complex behaviour of sea urchins regarding the predators’ threat
Sea urchins, albeit having a limited and ancestral sensory system, can show a complex behaviour when escaping a predator. These marine invertebrates tend to move slowly and with unpredictable movements, but when they smell a predator, they escape following a ballistic motion -straightforward, quick and directional- to escape the threat.

Life Sciences - Health - 10.11.2021
Study proposes new biomarkers to determine the neuronal damage in Alzheimer's
Study proposes new biomarkers to determine the neuronal damage in Alzheimer’s
Alzheimer's disease is the main neurodegenerative disease in old people for which there is no treatment or efficient prevention yet. Current diagnostic methods do not detect one of the earliest and most relevant alterations of the disease: the degree of synaptic dysfunction that shows the neuronal damage.
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