Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

May 14, 1998
"Noisy" Ventilators Are Better Ventilators
A new model of ventilator assisted lung function developed at Boston University may improve gas exchange in patients with lung injury and minimize additional trauma.

Biochemists Gain Crystal-Clear Insight into 'Ancient' Enzyme
Biochemists from the University of Pennsylvania and Duke University Medical Center have reported analytical studies revealing unexpected new insights into how two very different molecules - a protein and an RNA - work together to form an enzyme that performs one of the fundamental tasks of constructing the protein-making machinery of the cell.

Wistar Scientist Awarded American Cancer Society Grant For Research On Gene Therapy
Frank J. Rauscher III, Ph.D., head of The Wistar Institute's Molecular Genetics Program, has been awarded a $224,000 two- year grant from the American Cancer Society.

Very Fruitful Collaboration Between French And German Scientists Yields Unusual Insights Into The Structure Of Membrane Proteins
Scientists from the Max Planck Institute of Biochemistry in Martinsried, Germany, and the Institute of Structural Biology in Grenoble, France, used neutron beams to expand current knowledge on structure-function relations in the ion pump bacteriorhodopsin.

Novel Drug Trial To Treat Advanced Prostate Cancer Enrolling Patients At UCSF/Mount Zion Cancer Center
Advanced prostate cancer patients who have become resistant to standard hormone treatment therapy may be eligible to participate in a UCSF/Mount Zion Cancer Center clinical trial of a drug that researchers hope will inhibit the growth of blood vessels that nourish tumor cells.

Consumer-Oriented Environmental Policy Unsuccessful
In the Netherlands consumption of energy and materials is still increasing.

Nasal Spray Vaccine Prevents Both The Flu And Flu-Related Earaches
A vaccine sprayed as a fine mist into children's nostrils is highly effective at preventing both the flu and flu-related ear infections, according to results of a nationwide study published in the May 14 issue of The New England Journal of Medicine.

Mice Lacking The Pax8 Gene Suffer From Hypothyroidism And Fail To FormThyroxin-Producing Cells Of The Thyroid Gland
In the May issue of Nature Genetics, Scientists at the Max Planck Institute for Biophysical Chemistry, Goettingen, Germany report on the generation of a mouse mutant lacking the Pax8 gene.

Gene Detected That Decreases "Bad" LDL Cholesterol In Men May Cut Heart Disease Risk By 50 Percent
A gene that helps keep bad cholesterol at bay -- and may reduce heart disease risk by 50 percent -- has been discovered by researchers reporting in this month's Arteriosclerosis, Thombosis and Vascular Biology: Journal of the American Heart Association.

Do Giant Planets Form Quickly Or Slowly?
Carnegie's Alan Boss suggests that by looking for wobbles in young stars, astronomers can determine the mechanism by which giant planets form around them.

15 Drugs, Dyes And Other Chemicals Newly Listed As Known Or Likely Human Carcinogens
The National Toxicology Program,headquartered at the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, today announced the addition of 14 substances--including several diesel combustion products--to the 184 already included in the federal government's official list of known or

Discharged Mental Patients Without Substance Abuse Exhibit Same Rate Of Violence As Non-Mentally Ill Neighbors, Study Finds
In a major report from a large-scale study of people discharged from psychiatric hospitals, investigators have found that discharged patients who do not exhibit symptoms of alcohol or drug abuse are about as safe as their non-patient neighbors.

Inhibition Of A Novel Gene Involved In Phosphorylating Starch In TransgenicPotato Tubers Leads To The Repression Of Cold Induced Sweetening
Scientists at the Max Planck Institute of Molecular Plant Physiology in Golm, Germany, have isolated a novel gene that is responsible for the phosphorylation of starch.

Compound In Meat Prevents Diabetes, Study Suggests
A common type of fat found in red meats and cheeses may prevent diabetes, according to a research team from Purdue University and The Pennsylvania State University.

Scientists Create Extremely Sensitive Test For Detecting Radiation Damage
Canadian scientists collaborating with a University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill researcher have developed the most precise test yet for genetic damage caused by ionizing radiation and cancer-causing chemicals.

Antimicrobial Resistance: Issues And Options
Fighting the problem of antibiotic resistance will require a better system of surveillance, as well as increased efforts to prolong the effectiveness of existing antibiotics and to develop new drugs, says a new report from the Institute of Medicine.

Indonesian New Guinea Inhabited For More Than Ten Thousand Years
Excavations in the interior of the Indonesian part of New Guinea, Irian Jaya, have shown that people have lived there since the end of the Pleistocene epoch, in other words, for at least ten thousand years.

Researchers Unable To Document Existence Of Transient HIV Infection In Infants
Research published this week in the journal Science failed to verify even one case of transient infection among 42 cases where infants showed evidence of HIV-1 infection contracted from their mothers, but somehow became free of the virus that causes AIDS.

Memories Of Sexual Abuse Often Unconvincing In Court
In cases of sexual abuse which the supposed victim only remembers at a later date, no proof is found other than the victim's own statement.

Remarkable Skull Of Predatory Dinosaur Unearthed On Madagascar
Several specimens of a large predatory dinosaur -- including a nearly complete, exquisitely preserved skull -- were recently recovered on the island of Madagascar.

Different Molecular Events Underly Experience-Dependent Loss And Gain Of The Function Of The Developing Brain
Sensory experience is capable of modifying neuronal connectivities in the brain, either by enhancing or diminishing the flow of information.
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