Riviste scientifiche

NASA is planning a permanent moon base. What will it take to build it?

New Scientist - Ma, 13/09/2022 - 19:30
The US wants to build a long-term human outpost on the moon by around 2030. Here is all the tech that will be needed, from a space station in lunar orbit to a way to avoid 'space hay fever'

How should we regulate the firms planning to mine and sell moon rocks?

New Scientist - Ma, 13/09/2022 - 19:30
Several companies are making plans to mine and sell lunar resources, like rock and water ice. Now the race is on to agree a legal framework that is fair for everyone

Return to the moon: Why are we restarting human lunar exploration now?

New Scientist - Ma, 13/09/2022 - 19:30
NASA and SpaceX are among the key players leading a surge of missions to the moon, including crewed ones. Here’s what is special about this moment – and why it is happening

Scientists discover that it takes 10 ants to form a stable raft

New Scientist - Ma, 13/09/2022 - 18:58
Ants prefer not to make a collective raft when on water. However, once there are 10 insects near each other, the so-called Cheerios effect pushes them together and is too strong to counteract

Ethereum Merge: What will the radical update mean for cryptocurrency?

New Scientist - Ma, 13/09/2022 - 18:57
The electricity consumption of the Ethereum cryptocurrency rivals that of some countries, but a controversial update to how it works will slash this by 99 per cent – here's the low-down on what's going on

Weird ‘failed star’ seen blasting off its outer layers for first time

New Scientist - Ma, 13/09/2022 - 18:12
A brown dwarf – partway between a planet and a star – has been spotted engulfed in a cloud of gas, which it probably produced after a huge pulse of heat blasted through it

The fastest way to soothe a crying baby, according to science

New Scientist - Ma, 13/09/2022 - 18:00
Babies fall asleep faster when you hold them while walking, compared with when you hold them in a chair or lay them down

Bangalore floods highlight how cities must adapt to climate change

New Scientist - Ma, 13/09/2022 - 17:33
Exceptionally heavy monsoon rains have been exacerbated by poor urban planning in the Indian tech hub, showing the need for improved water systems

Why do AIs keep creating nightmarish images of strange characters?

New Scientist - Ma, 13/09/2022 - 15:43
Image-generating AIs seem to produce mythical characters that look consistently recognisable – but their appearance has a rational explanation

Simple puzzles are revealing why humans are the only talking apes

New Scientist - Ma, 13/09/2022 - 15:00
Cognitive scientist Gillian Forrester is challenging chimps and gorillas to solve puzzles in an attempt to address the long-standing mystery of how humans evolved the ability to speak

Strange hexagonal diamonds found in meteorite from another planet

New Scientist - Lu, 12/09/2022 - 22:00
Diamonds found in four meteorites in north-west Africa probably came from an ancient dwarf planet, and they are expected to be harder than Earth diamonds

Google AI can tell what things smell like by the molecular structure

New Scientist - Lu, 12/09/2022 - 19:00
An artificial intelligence model that maps the structure of molecules to their smell could help create specific food tastes or find compounds to better repel disease-carrying organisms like mosquitoes

Google AI can tell what things smells like by the molecular structure

New Scientist - Lu, 12/09/2022 - 19:00
An artificial intelligence model that maps the structure of molecules to their smell could help create specific food tastes or find compounds to better repel disease-carrying organisms like mosquitoes

JWST has caught hot stars destroying gas and dust in the Orion Nebula

New Scientist - Lu, 12/09/2022 - 18:12
The James Webb Space Telescope has peered through the clouds of the Orion Nebula to spot stars blazing as they heat the area around them and blast apart molecules

Sydney residents in cultural evolution war with bin-raiding cockatoos

New Scientist - Lu, 12/09/2022 - 18:00
Sulphur-crested cockatoos have learned to nudge off bricks weighing down bin lids but humans have struck back to protect their garbage

Continued attendance in a PrEP program despite low adherence and non-protective drug levels among adolescent girls and young women in Kenya: Results from a prospective cohort study

PLoS Medicine - Lu, 12/09/2022 - 16:00

by Jean de Dieu Tapsoba, Jane Cover, Christopher Obong’o, Martha Brady, Tim R. Cressey, Kira Mori, Gordon Okomo, Edward Kariithi, Rael Obanda, Daniel Oluoch Madiang, Ying Qing Chen, Paul Drain, Ann Duerr

Background

In sub-Saharan Africa (SSA), adolescent girls and young women (AGYW) ages 15 to 24 years represent <10% of the population yet account for 1 in 5 new HIV infections. Although oral pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) with tenofovir disoproxil fumarate/emtricitabine (TDF/FTC) can be highly effective, low persistence in PrEP programs and poor adherence have limited its ability to reduce HIV incidence among women.

Methods and findings

A total of 336 AGYW participating in the PEPFAR-funded DREAMS PrEP program in western Kenya were enrolled into a study of PrEP use conducted between 6/2019 to 1/2020. AGYW, which used daily oral TDF/FTC, completed interviews and provided dried blood spots (DBS) for measurement of tenofovir-diphosphate (TFV-DP) concentrations at enrollment and 3 months later, and 176/302 (58.3%, 95% confidence interval [95% CI 52.3 to 63.8]) met our definition of PrEP persistence: having expressed intention to use PrEP and attended both the second interview and an interim refill visit. Among AGYW with DBS taken at the second interview, only 9/197 (4.6%, [95% CI 1.6 to 7.5]) had protective TFV-DP levels (≥700 fmol/punch) and 163/197 (82.7%, [95% CI 77.5 to 88]) had levels consistent with no recent PrEP use (<10 fmol/punch). Perception of being at moderate-to-high risk for HIV if not taking PrEP was associated with persistence (adjusted odds ratio, 10.17 [95% CI 5.14 to 20.13], p < 0.001) in a model accounting for county of residence and variables that had p-value <0.1 in unadjusted analysis (age, being in school, initiated PrEP 2 to 3 months before the first interview, still active in DREAMS, having children, having multiple sex partners, partner aware of PrEP use, partner very supportive of PrEP use, partner has other partners, AGYW believes that a partner puts her at risk, male condom use, injectable contraceptive use, and implant contraceptive use). Among AGYW who reported continuing PrEP, >90% indicated they were using PrEP to prevent HIV, although almost all had non-protective TFV-DP levels. Limitations included short study duration and inclusion of only DREAMS participants.

Conclusions

Many AGYW persisted in the PrEP program without taking PrEP frequently enough to receive benefit. Notably, AGYW who persisted had a higher self-perceived risk of HIV infection. These AGYW may be optimal candidates for long-acting PrEP.

Self-replicating protein factories are a step towards artificial life

New Scientist - Lu, 12/09/2022 - 15:56
Ribosomes, tiny structures where proteins are produced inside cells, have been made to self-replicate outside cells for the first time, which could help us understand the origins of life

Quantum diamond sensor used to measure neuron activity in mouse tissue

New Scientist - Lu, 12/09/2022 - 15:45
The activity of neurons has been measured in a slice of mouse tissue using a quantum diamond sensor – and it might one day enable a new type of non-invasive brain scanning

[Comment] Combined nivolumab and ipilimumab in non-resectable Merkel cell carcinoma

The Lancet - Lu, 12/09/2022 - 08:30
Merkel cell carcinoma, a life-threatening but radiosensitive cancer, accounts for less than 1% of all cutaneous malignancies.1 It is found predominantly in White populations and risk factors include older age (ie, age 65 years and older), ultraviolet exposure, male sex, immunosuppression, and Merkel cell polyomavirus infection.1

[Articles] Combined nivolumab and ipilimumab with or without stereotactic body radiation therapy for advanced Merkel cell carcinoma: a randomised, open label, phase 2 trial

The Lancet - Lu, 12/09/2022 - 08:30
First-line combined nivolumab and ipilimumab in patients with advanced Merkel cell carcinoma showed a high ORR with durable responses and an expected safety profile. Combined nivolumab and ipilimumab also showed clinical benefit in patients with previous anti-PD-1 and PD-L1 treatment. Addition of SBRT did not improve efficacy of combined nivolumab and ipilimumab. The combination of nivolumab and ipilimumab represents a new first-line and salvage therapeutic option for advanced Merkel cell carcinoma.
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