New research database can help shape the most effective and efficient response to COVID-19

Researchers around the world can tap into a new inter-disciplinary online database of COVID-19 research – allowing them to search for new partners, resources and funding to boost the global battle against the virus.

Launched today, the international open-access database for ongoing research activity COVID CORPUS aims to encourage collaboration and reduce duplication between researchers across all academic disciplines working on Covid-19 research.

Through its easy-to-use interface, the database will allow researchers and funders around the globe to coordinate, collaborate and network to help shape the most effective and efficient response to COVID-19 and its many impacts.

University of Birmingham experts in Computer Science and Medicine worked with the Institute for Global Innovation to create the database, which includes all disciplines of research, including health-related, socio-economic, behavioural, educational, cultural, science and technology.

Fighting COVID-19 requires the academic community to share ideas

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In Mayo’s hometown, DFLers look to put science, and Trump’s response to COVID-19, on the ballot

For Republicans in key state Senate races across Greater Minnesota, running alongside Donald Trump could be an asset given the president’s strength outside of the Twin Cities metro area. So much so that Democrats in places like Moorhead, Bemidji and St. Cloud haven’t put the president front and center in their races.

Rochester is different.

In Senate District 26, which includes much of Med City and a more rural slice of Olmsted County, Democrat and retired Mayo Clinic doctor Aleta Borrud hopes to tie three-term Republican Sen. Carla Nelson to Trump — and particularly to the president’s handling of the COVID-19 pandemic. It’s a bet that the district, home to Mayo and a legion of medical professionals, opposes Trump and the GOP’s response to the coronavirus enough that they will oust Nelson in the Nov. 3 election.

“Somebody who is supporting and allying with somebody who is anti-science really speaks

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Mouse study suggests parental response to infant distress is innate but adapts to change — ScienceDaily

A National Institutes of Health study in mice suggests that parents have an innate capacity to respond to an infant’s cries for help and this capacity may serve as a foundation from which a parent learns to adjust to an infant’s changing needs. The study was conducted by Robert C. Froemke, Ph.D., of New York University School of Medicine, and colleagues. It appears in Nature.

When housed with mice who have given birth, unmated female mice will assist with the care of the newborn pups. The researchers evaluated the ability of such babysitter mice to respond to a variety of recorded newborn distress cries. These included typical distress cries as well as a range of cries that had been digitally altered — sped up or slowed down to include more or fewer syllables than typical distress vocalizations.

Experienced babysitters responded to typical distress cries 80% of the time, compared

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The Technology 202: Twitter’s response to Trump’s coronavirus diagnosis highlights inconsistencies in company’s handling of abuse

From Democratic Reps. Rashida Tlaib (Mich.) and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (N.Y.):

Reps. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.) and Ayanna Pressley (D-Mass.) also responded to the company’s tweet.

Twitter on Saturday said it would do better:

The episode highlighted the broader issue of social media abuse directed at female politicians particularly from minority backgrounds. 

Female congresswomen are far more likely than their male counterparts to be targeted with abusive posts on Facebook and Twitter, according to a new analysis from the Institute for Strategic Dialogue shared exclusively with The Technology 202. And the research shows that Ocasio-Cortez and Omar received the highest proportion of abusive comments. 

The findings are particularly important in the final weeks of a contentious presidential election, where a Black and Asian American woman is for the first time on the presidential ticket. They’re also a reminder that vice presidential candidate and Sen. Kamala D. Harris (D-Calif.) is particularly vulnerable

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Spanish groups urge scientific response to virus

MADRID — Groups representing more than 170,000 health workers are urging Spanish politicians to base their response to the pandemic on scientific grounds rather than politics.

A 10-point manifesto by 55 scientific societies published Sunday in all the major newspapers said “decisions must be based on the best available scientific evidence, completely detached from the continuous political confrontation.”

The campaign comes after a dispute between the left-wing national government and the conservative regional authorities of the Madrid region led to weeks of back and forth before partially locking down the Spanish capital late Friday amid a surge of infections.

The manifesto also calls for less red-tape in adopting measures against virus outbreaks, for authorities in Spain’s 19 regions to abide by a set of national scientific standards that would dictate the response, and calls for stopping interference in medical decisions.

Addressing “politicians” in general, the scientists write: “On behalf of

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Cells sacrifice themselves to boost immune response to viruses — ScienceDaily

Whether flu or coronavirus, it can take several days for the body to ramp up an effective response to a viral infection. New research appearing in the journal Nature Immunology describes how different cells in the immune system work together, communicate, and — in the case of cells called neutrophils — bring about their own death to help fight off infections. The findings could have important implications for the development of vaccines and anti-viral therapies.

“The immune system consists of several different types of cells, all acting in coordination,” said Minsoo Kim, Ph.D., a professor of Microbiology and Immunology at the University of Rochester Medical Center (URMC) and senior author of the study. “These findings show that cells called neutrophils play an important altruistic role that benefits other immune cells by providing key resources for their survival and, in the process, enhancing the body’s immune response against a virus.”

Neutrophils

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Report backs NASA exploration efforts as response to Chinese space program

WASHINGTON — A new report used the growth of China’s space program to argue for continued support of NASA’s own exploration ambitions as well as legislation to assist the space industry and space traffic management.

The China Task Force Report, prepared by a group of Republican House members and released Sept. 30, covers a wide range of issues that group linked to the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) and saw as threats to the United States. Much of the report was devoted to issues of national security and the economy.

However, two pages of the 130-page report discussed space exploration. In it, the task force noted Chinese development of a space station and long-term, although as yet unscheduled, plans human lunar mission. “The U.S. should be concerned about the technological innovations and leadership role for the CCP that could come from missions crewed by [People’s Republic of China]-nationals to the Moon,”

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UW researchers driving around Seattle using Street View-style camera to study response to pandemic

In images of of the streets of Seattle, University of Washington researchers are using algorithms to help identify things such as cars, people and whether they are physically distancing in each frame of (University of Washington Photo)

The COVID-19 pandemic has altered life as we know it in Seattle, and a team from the University of Washington is conducting research using images from around the city to better understand just how much.

Since May, researchers have been driving around Seattle, scanning the streets with a car-mounted camera similar to Google’s Street View technology. Images capture a particular point in time and illustrate whether people are outside, how many cars are on the road, which business are open and so forth. According to UW News, researchers hope the massive data set will help answer questions about what makes a city resilient and how to better prepare for potential future pandemics and

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Women who have had repeated and unexplained pregnancy loss have an altered perception and brain response to men’s body odor — ScienceDaily

Women who have suffered unexplained repeated pregnancy loss (uRPL) have altered perceptions and brain responses to male body odours, in comparison to those with no history of uRPL, suggests a new study published today in eLife.

The results could lead to urgently needed answers for many women who experience repeat miscarriage with no clear underlying explanation.

Around 50% of human conceptions and 15% of human pregnancies result in miscarriage, but only a limited number of these can be explained. Body odour has been linked to many aspects of healthy human reproduction — such as synchrony of menstruation between women who live together, and the influence of body odours of breast-feeding women on the timing of ovulation and menstruation in others.

“Given that sense of smell is associated with human reproduction, we hypothesised that it may also be related to disorders of human reproduction,” explains lead author Liron Rozenkrantz, who

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Citizen scientists reveal frogs’ initial response to ‘black summer’ bushfires

Surviving the flames: citizen scientists reveal frogs’ initial response to ‘black summer’ bushfires
The threatened Southern Barred Frog, one of the frogs recorded calling in burnt areas post-fire using FrogID. Credit: Dr Jodi Rowley

New research from the Australian Museum (AM) and UNSW Sydney published today in Conservation Science and Practice reveals that many frog species in southeastern Australia have initially survived following the unprecedented bushfires in late 2019 and early 2020. By area burnt, this fire season was the largest in southeastern Australia since European occupation and as a result, it had a dramatic impact on biodiversity, including frogs.


Frogs are one of the most threatened groups of animals on earth and face many risks, including the growing threat of fires due to the climate crisis.

“However, we don’t know enough about frogs’ response to fire, and there are limited studies on the impact of fire on Australian frogs—so we urgently needed real-time data to understand how frogs fared after the fires,

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