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Study reveals vision’s role in vowel perception

In a study based at Brown University, researchers found that the motion and configuration of a speaker’s lips are key components of the information people gather when distinguishing vowels in speech.
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Backed by the Brown Institute for Brain Science and organized by a neuroscience postdoc, the weeklong series of talks, film screenings, art shows and fairs aims to make brain research fun, educational and accessible.
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Perovskite solar cells are a promising new low-cost photovoltaic technology, but most contain toxic lead; a team led by Brown researchers has introduced solar cells with a new titanium-perovskite material that gets the lead out.
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A new study shows terahertz data links are possible even without direct line-of-sight between transmitter and receiver, a promising finding for future ultra-high-capacity terahertz data networks.
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A new approach to calibrating the pioneering BrainGate brain-computer interface allowed three clinical trial participants with tetraplegia to gain control of a computer cursor after just one simple calibration step.
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New research in mice and humans suggests that an enzyme called SNRK suppresses inflammation in obesity-related “white fat” while increasing metabolism in heat-producing “brown fat,” making SNRK an intriguing target in the battle against obesity.
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Results of a new randomized, double-blinded, controlled clinical trial in veterans showed a 75 percent reduction in the risk of needing surgery to treat a squamous cell carcinoma for a year after applying a skin cream for up to four weeks.
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Researchers report that thousands of leukemia patients who received frequent transfusions had very short stays in hospice at the end of life, suggesting that transfusion dependence presents a barrier to making meaningful use of palliative care.
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New research suggests that the bulk of clay minerals on Mars could have been formed as the planet’s crust cooled and solidified, not by later interactions with water on the surface as has long been assumed.
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The detection of gravitational waves has given astronomers a new way of looking at the universe, and a new study shows how these ripples in the fabric of spacetime might confirm or rule out the existence of a certain type of black hole.
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Subduction--the sliding of one tectonic plate beneath another--is possible on the ice shell of Jupiter's moon Europa, a new study shows. The process could supply chemical food for life to a subsurface ocean.
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For their distinguished contributions to science, professors Stephen Helfand and Sharon Swartz and have been elected fellows of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.
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News from Brown

NIH grant will expand community asthma care program

An $8 million grant to Rhode Island Hospital will allow two Warren Alpert Medical School and Hassenfeld Child Health Innovation Institute pediatric psychologists to develop a community-based program to address disparities in asthma outcomes in children.
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Accompanied by the island nation’s prime minister, Brown University public health professor Stephen McGarvey celebrated a new facility for studying the lifestyle and genetic influences of obesity and non-communicable diseases in Samoa.
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A team of computer scientists led by Brown’s Philip Klein has come up with a new algorithmic approach to drawing congressional districts that would prevent contortions for partisan gain.
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The proposed detector would use superfluid helium to explore mass ranges of dark matter particles thousands of times smaller than current large-scale experiments can detect.
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Fatigue due to repetitive strain is the leading cause of failure in metal components and structures, but new research shows how crystalline structures called nanotwins can slow the accumulation of fatigue-related damage.
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A person’s ability to smell may vary throughout the day in accordance with their circadian rhythm, according to new evidence in a small study by Brown University researchers who are looking at how sleep may influence eating patterns in teens.
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News from Brown

Brown launches global health master’s degree

With an emphasis on global field experience and integration with social sciences, the Brown University School of Public Health will offer a two-year master’s degree in global public health beginning next fall.
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