Riviste scientifiche

A thousand words, unspoken

Nature - Ven, 15/10/2021 - 00:00

Nature, Published online: 15 October 2021; doi:10.1038/d41586-021-02767-1

Memories are made of this.

How I wrote a pop-science book

Nature - Ven, 15/10/2021 - 00:00

Nature, Published online: 15 October 2021; doi:10.1038/d41586-021-02835-6

Much of John Tregoning’s pandemic year was spent writing a book about infectious disease. Now that it’s out, what has he learnt?

Physicists make most precise measurement ever of neutron’s lifetime

Nature - Ven, 15/10/2021 - 00:00

Nature, Published online: 15 October 2021; doi:10.1038/d41586-021-02812-z

But decades-long mystery of how long the particles live persists.

Snakes started eating birds and mammals after dinosaurs went extinct

New Scientist - Gio, 14/10/2021 - 21:00
Snakes typically ate insects before the mass extinction event that wiped out the non-bird dinosaurs, but then they broadened diets to include birds and mammals

US military may get a dog-like robot armed with a sniper rifle

New Scientist - Gio, 14/10/2021 - 20:44
A four-legged robot made by Ghost Robotics and outfitted with a sniper rifle and night-vision cameras was displayed at a meeting of the Association of the United States Army

Venomous viper species from the Tibetan plateau discovered in museum

New Scientist - Gio, 14/10/2021 - 19:56
A DNA analysis of museum snake specimens has revealed two previously unrecognised species of Asian pit viper, both from the eastern Tibetan plateau

Weird shape-shifting clouds of dust seem to be orbiting a distant star

New Scientist - Gio, 14/10/2021 - 18:38
The light from a distant star appears to be orbited by something that is continually changing shape and size, possibly clouds of dust from repeated collisions

Highly processed junk food consumption is rising among US adults

New Scientist - Gio, 14/10/2021 - 17:00
US adults are eating more highly processed junk food now than they were 20 years ago, with the trend particularly clear among those without a college degree

Can long covid clinics in England cope if cases rise this winter?

New Scientist - Gio, 14/10/2021 - 16:36
The care situation for long covid patients in England is improving, but a winter spike in cases will put the country’s 89 specialist clinics under new pressure

HMG-CoA reductase inhibitors and COVID-19 mortality in Stockholm, Sweden: A registry-based cohort study

PLoS Medicine - Gio, 14/10/2021 - 16:00

by Rita Bergqvist, Viktor H. Ahlqvist, Michael Lundberg, Maria-Pia Hergens, Johan Sundström, Max Bell, Cecilia Magnusson

Background

The relationship between statin treatment and Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) mortality has been discussed due to the pleiotropic effects of statins on coagulation and immune mechanisms. However, available observational studies are hampered by study design flaws, resulting in substantial heterogeneity and ambiguities. Here, we aim to determine the relationship between statin treatment and COVID-19 mortality.

Methods and findings

This cohort study included all Stockholm residents aged 45 or older (N = 963,876), followed up from 1 March 2020 until 11 November 2020. The exposure was statin treatment initiated before the COVID-19-pandemic, defined as recorded statin dispensation in the Swedish Prescribed Drug Register between 1 March 2019 and 29 February 2020. COVID-19-specific mortality was ascertained from the Swedish Cause of Death Registry. Hazard ratios (HRs) were calculated using multivariable Cox regression models. We further performed a target trial emulation restricted to initiators of statins.In the cohort (51.6% female), 169,642 individuals (17.6%) were statin users. Statin users were older (71.0 versus 58.0 years), more likely to be male (53.3% versus 46.7%), more often diagnosed with comorbidities (for example, ischemic heart disease 23.3% versus 1.6%), more frequently on anticoagulant and antihypertensive treatments, less likely to have a university-level education (34.5% versus 45.4%), and more likely to have a low disposable income (20.6% versus 25.2%), but less likely to reside in crowded housing (6.1% versus 10.3%).A total of 2,545 individuals died from COVID-19 during follow-up, including 765 (0.5%) of the statin users and 1,780 (0.2%) of the nonusers. Statin treatment was associated with a lowered COVID-19 mortality (adjusted HR, 0.88; 95% CI, 0.79 to 0.97, P = 0.01), and this association did not vary appreciably across age groups, sexes, or COVID-19 risk groups. The confounder adjusted HR for statin treatment initiators was 0.78 (95% CI, 0.59 to 1.05, P = 0.10) in the emulated target trial. Limitations of this study include the observational design, reliance on dispensation data, and the inability to study specific drug regimens.

Conclusions

Statin treatment had a modest negative association with COVID-19 mortality. While this finding needs confirmation from randomized clinical trials, it supports the continued use of statin treatment for medical prevention according to current recommendations also during the COVID-19 pandemic.

NASA’s Lucy mission is launching to study asteroids near Jupiter

New Scientist - Gio, 14/10/2021 - 15:45
A NASA spacecraft called Lucy is about to blast off to study the Trojan asteroids near Jupiter, which are pristine relics from the early solar system

Covid-19 news: Positive lateral flow test results ‘should be trusted’

New Scientist - Gio, 14/10/2021 - 15:21
The latest coronavirus news updated every day including coronavirus cases, the latest news, features and interviews from New Scientist and essential information about the covid-19 pandemic

A battery that’s not just greener but better

Nature - Gio, 14/10/2021 - 00:00

Nature, Published online: 14 October 2021; doi:10.1038/d41586-021-02814-x

Lithium-ion batteries that incorporate a recycled material outperform those made with a commercial version.

Finicky no more: ancient snakes ate their way to success

Nature - Gio, 14/10/2021 - 00:00

Nature, Published online: 14 October 2021; doi:10.1038/d41586-021-02790-2

The ancestor of living snakes lived on invertebrates, but its descendants colonized the planet by going gourmet.

First mission to Jupiter’s asteroids could reveal Solar System origins

Nature - Gio, 14/10/2021 - 00:00

Nature, Published online: 14 October 2021; doi:10.1038/d41586-021-02807-w

NASA’s Lucy spacecraft will loop past the never-before-explored ‘Trojan’ asteroids during a 12-year journey.

Daily briefing: Evidence for tobacco use going back to the Pleistocene

Nature - Gio, 14/10/2021 - 00:00

Nature, Published online: 14 October 2021; doi:10.1038/d41586-021-02821-y

Charred seeds push the earliest tobacco use back 9,000 years. Plus, how the COVID pandemic unleashed attacks on scientists, and exploring the singularity at the top of an apple.

WHO names researchers to reboot outbreak origin investigations

Nature - Gio, 14/10/2021 - 00:00

Nature, Published online: 14 October 2021; doi:10.1038/d41586-021-02813-y

The group, called SAGO, will create a permanent framework for probing epidemics, and initiate the next phase of the COVID origins hunt.

Author Correction: Structural basis of ketamine action on human NMDA receptors

Nature - Gio, 14/10/2021 - 00:00

Nature, Published online: 14 October 2021; doi:10.1038/s41586-021-04038-5

Author Correction: Structural basis of ketamine action on human NMDA receptors

Author Correction: Mapping the emergence of molecular vibrations mediating bond formation

Nature - Gio, 14/10/2021 - 00:00

Nature, Published online: 14 October 2021; doi:10.1038/s41586-021-04036-7

Author Correction: Mapping the emergence of molecular vibrations mediating bond formation

Genomic reconstruction of the SARS-CoV-2 epidemic in England

Nature - Gio, 14/10/2021 - 00:00

Nature, Published online: 14 October 2021; doi:10.1038/s41586-021-04069-y

Genomic reconstruction of the SARS-CoV-2 epidemic in England