Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

October 25, 2001
Does prescribing heroin to heroin addicts work?
Researchers from Switzerland report, in this week's Lancet, success with a controversial heroin-assisted treatment programme for chronically addicted heroin addicts who failed to respond to traditional treatments.

Diversity of species triumphs
A new data analysis has dealt a blow to arguments that the link between species diversity and productivity in ecosystems could be due to experimental artifact.

Anthrax - Trail of terror
As reports are continuing to emerge of new anthrax attacks, New Scientist can reveal that the anthrax used in the attacks is not a strain that Iraq or the former Soviet Union used in mass produced anthrax.

Charging for breast-cancer screening reduces attendance
Researchers from Finland report, in this week's Lancet, a fall in uptake of breast cancer screening with the introduction of charges.

New small gene class found by Dartmouth geneticists may exert far reaching influence on cell behavior
Geneticists at Dartmouth Medical School have discovered a new family of unusually small genes that act in the finely tuned yet remarkably versatile orchestration of development and behavior, adding still another dimension to the diversity and complexity of the cell

Horseshoe Crab Research Center provides information to improve management
Mmanagement of the horseshoe crab population has become increasingly controversial.

Europe and United States assess international support of science in Russia and Ukraine
Western Countries assess international support of science in Russia and Ukraine.

A personal approach can enhance diabetes care
Evidence is increasing that good control of diabetes may postpone the development of diabetic complications, but maintaining good control over a long period can be difficult.

Breast cancer in relatives of women with breast cancer
Although first-degree relatives of women with breast cancer (mothers, sisters, daughters) are at increased risk of the disease, most women who develop breast cancer do not have an affected relative, report researchers from Oxford in this week's Lancet.

USF Alzheimer's vaccine research boosted by $1.1-million NIH grant
The University of South Florida's nationally recognized work to refine a promising vaccine for Alzheimer's disease was boosted by a new $1.1-million National Institutes of Health grant.

Action needed to reduce hospital admission for asthma in south Asian groups
Black and South Asian people with asthma are at increased risk of hospital admission from acute attacks than white patients.

Science Report: Super-crocodile crawls out of the African Cretaceous
Researchers report newly discovered skulls and skeletons of a giant crocodile-like reptile from Cretaceous (about 112 million-year old) deposits in Niger.

Database protection laws could threaten economic development and scientific research
A European Community (EC) policy that allows government agencies and private companies to charge fees for factual data not protected by copyright could threaten economic development and hamper scientific research, according to an article in this week's issue of the journal Science.

Prostate cancer screening: a suitable case for ethical treatment
Testing men for prostate cancer without informing them how such screening has divided the medical profession is unethical.

A parvovirus may be linked to infertility in men say German scientists
German scientists have found evidence that a parvovirus called adeno-associated virus (AAV) may play a role in male infertility according to research published in Human Reproduction.

Betting on climate change: Alaskan gambling contest yields treasure trove of scientific data
A celebrated betting pool in Alaska is providing researchers with a remarkably accurate record of global climate change, according to a new study in the journal Science.

Scientists find simple way of identifying the likeliest days to conceive
A simple way of establishing on which days in a woman's menstrual cycle she is fertile has been identified by US and Italian fertility experts, according to research published in Europe's leading reproductive medicine journal, Human Reproduction.

Researchers find cause of liver cirrhosis and develop treatment that blocks it
Researchers in San Diego and the United Kingdom have identified a protein segment and the mechanism that underlies excess fibrous tissue growth leading to conditions such as liver fibrosis and cirrhosis.

Kansas State University nutrition research finds: Eggs have a lipid that lowers cholesterol absorption
Nutrition researchers at Kansas State University have published the first evidence that the absorption of cholesterol is reduced by another compound in the egg, a lecithin.

A way of predicting civil war
Researchers in the US have developed a

Screening might help to increase success rate of surgical treatment of one of the world's biggest killers
Death rates from colorectal cancer could be cut by 20% through screening people in order to identify the disease before symptons develop.

Study points to mysteries behind type 2 diabetes in youth
What do healthy adolescents and people with type 2 diabetes have in common?

Two Hopkins faculty members receive 'genius' awards
The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation has awarded two Johns Hopkins faculty members MacArthur Fellowships.

Doctors issue alert over spontaneous natural conception while undergoing IVF
A woman undergoing fertility treatment in the USA has given birth to quadruplets of whom at least one, and possibly two, were conceived spontaneously while she was undergoing fertility treatment.

Lilly Endowment grants almost $26 million to Purdue Discovery Park
Purdue University today (Thursday, 10/25) announced that Lilly Endowment has awarded the university a grant of almost $26 million for its new Discovery Park, a complex for advanced interdisciplinary research and education.

Introgen's gene drug demonstrates tumor growth control
For the first time in humans cells, preclinical studies show the MDA-7 protein is lost as melanoma tumors become more aggressive and metastasize.

Conference to explore how developments in cognitive science and studies of the mind impact on the law
Developments in cognitive science are transforming our understanding of the mind.

Immune system in mice affected by changes in daylight
Researchers here have discovered how seasonal changes in the length of the day affect the immune system in mice.

New children's environmental health centers to study cause of autism and other disorders
Four new children's environmental health centers will help us understand whether environmental factors play a role in the progress of autism and other childhood disorders and illnesses.

Does people management enhance profit in British business?
Companies which value their employees by implementing people management practices like training and job security may well be rewarded by higher productivity, says new research funded by the Economic & Social Research Council's (ESRC) Future of Work Programme.

Why fat children are at increased risk of cardiovascular disease as adults
It is well recognised that many fat (obese) children go on to develop cardiovascular disease (disease of the arteries that leads to heart attacks and strokes) later in life.

Women with multiple sclerosis and low mobility receive less preventive services
Women with multiple sclerosis and considerable disability are less likely to receive appropriate preventive care than those with less disability, despite their undiminished life expectancy, concludes a study in this week's BMJ.

Anthrax - How to protect ourselves
What if someone disperses anthrax spores over a crowd without anyone noticing?

Physicists advance theory for new class of quantum phase transition
Rice University-led physicists have made a key advancement in understanding how complex quantum fluctuations play a role in the transformation of metals from one electronic state to another.

Gene-rich pufferfish DNA decoded
A substantial short cut to the biologically important information embedded in the human genome has been taken by an international research consortium with the completion of a draft sequence of the genome of the Japanese pufferfish Fugu rubripes.

Science in The Service of Police Investigations - 2002 International science competition entries now being accepted
Entries for the 2002 OlympiYeda - International Teen Science Competition focusing on Science in Service of Police Investigations are now being accepted.

Rules for medical research on patients questioned
In The Lancet this week, the 2000 revision of the Declaration of Helsinki (available on
Does the Pill affect libido by blunting a woman's sense of smell?
Italian scientists have confirmed that the Pill appears to affect a woman's sensitivity to smells In Human Reproduction they suggest this could affect libido and also that the concept of hidden ovulation in humans may need to be rethought.

Improved care needed for people with depression
Around 450 million people worldwide have mental or psychosocial problems, but up to a quarter of those who turn to health services for help will not be correctly diagnosed and will not, therefore, get the right treatment.

New study from the United Nations Food and Agricultural Organization and Mayo Clinic sets the stage for future nutritional research throughout the world
A new study, which found that women in a population center of western Africa need more energy than men based on their work burden, sets the stage for development of a model to research nutritional needs of women throughout the world.

Researchers identify pathogen-specific gene response in human immune cells
Using DNA microarray technology, researchers at the Whitehead Institute have discovered that a type of human immune cell, known as a dendritic cell, initiates an immune response that is tailor-made for specific infectious organisms, whether a bacteria, virus, or fungus.

What's the weather like on neutron stars?
Earth-like weather systems on the surface of neutron stars could explain why they emit mysterious flickering X-rays, according to an American astrophysicist.
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