Weekly News Bites: Grooves for the brain, an invisibility cloak, and a calcium storm

Asia Research News monitors the latest research news in Asia. Some highlights that caught our attention this week are how exercising to music can help cognitive function, a material inspired by a mythological creature, and choking cancer cells using calcium.

Groove your way to better brain health! A recent study from the University of Tsukuba reveals that exercising in sync with a “groove rhythm” enhances the prefrontal cortex, improving decision-making, emotional control, and concentration. Moving in time with the music gets our brains excited and makes the workout more enjoyable too.

University of Delhi researchers discovered a vast dinosaur hatchery, spanning 1000 km in the Lameta Formation in India. This large hatchery belonged to one of the largest dinosaurs to roam the Earth: the titanosaur. The nests reveal more about the titanosaur’s egg-laying behavior but also gives insights into their physiology and parenting styles.

We know our pets can tell between angry and happy voices, but can goats? Yes says the City University of Hong Kong who show that goats notice the emotional change. When listening to a recorded voice, the goats showed increased curiosity when the tone of voice changed from happy to angry and vice versa.

Inspired by a Greek mythological creature, the chimera, scientists from Jilin University and Tsinghua University combined characteristics from 3 animals’ survival strategies (chameleons, glass frogs and bearded dragons) into a material that can act like an invisibility cloak. This is an example of research into metamaterials which manipulate electromagnetic waves which can be used for stealth.

Scientists from China University of Geosciences, Huazhong University of Science and Technology, Hainan University, and Ewha Womans University have developed a drug that kills cancer cells through a “calcium storm”. A two-pronged attack floods the cell with too much calcium causing it to suffocate. The tumor cell takes up a nanoparticle which is activated by infrared light to cause this “storm”.