Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

November 26, 2001
Boneless, brainy, and ancient
How to make a robotic arm that is able to flex in an infinite number of ways and order it to do so without disorder and confusion?

Gene study hunt finds new clue to premature heart attacks
In one of the largest genetic studies of its kind, researchers have discovered three previously unidentified genetic variants that may explain why some families are prone to premature heart disease.

Assaulting the mosquito's sense of smell
The mosquito may be nature's most effective bioterrorist, accounting for millions of deaths each year.

Antique device makes microscope faster
As part of an NWO project, Utrecht researchers have adapted a spectrograph for use in fluorescence microscopes.

Ancient Chinese folk remedy may hold key to non-toxic cancer treatment
Two bioengineering researchers at the University of Washington have discovered a promising potential treatment for cancer among the ancient arts of Chinese folk medicine.

Protein could help rejuvenate oxygen-starved cardiac tissue, heal wounds
A UCSF-led team is reporting striking results in mice that indicate that a molecule known as HIF-1α could prove an effective target for inducing the growth of blood vessels in oxygen-starved tissues.

Personal decisions exercise the emotional part of the brain
People use the emotional parts of their brain to make so-called rational personal decisions.

Alzheimer's disease and exposure to vaccines
As part of the Canadian Study of Health and Aging, René Verreault and colleagues prospectively studied the possible relationship between exposure to vaccines and the risk of Alzheimer's disease.

Hip research: Making more durable artificial joints
Researchers at Case Western Reserve University and Exponent, a leading engineering and science-consulting firm in Philadelphia, are working to improve the wear and performance of artificial joints made of ultra-high molecular weight polyethylene.

Trends in the use of Ritalin in Canada
Stimulants such as methylphenidate (Ritalin) are commonly prescribed for attention-deficit disorder (ADD) with or without hyperactivity.

Parental marital discord affects quality of offspring marriages
Parents who are jealous, moody, inclined to fly off the handle, critical and prone to dominate their spouse have a far worse effect on their children's marriage than does parental divorce or poor parent-child relations, according to a Penn State study.

Mirror, mirror on the ball...
Starshine-2, the third in a programmed series of mirror-covered satellites built with help of schoolchildren will be launched from the Space Shuttle Endeavor on November 29th.

Iron Age burial sites provide evidence of social changes
During the course of the Iron Age, monumental burial sites in the south of the Netherlands fell into disuse.

The terrible twos: What might happen if our Sun had a twin
How would our Sun behave differently if it had a closely orbiting twin?

Small-scale analyzer detects, analyzes aerosols
Da-Ren Chen, Ph.D., mechanical engineer at Washington University in St.

Earth's magnetic field really did reverse itself
NWO researchers have developed an improved method of identifying the magnetic signals in old geological strata.

Genetically engineered T cell tackles kidney cancer
As part of a project financed by NWO, an experimental method has been developed to tackle metastasised kidney cancer.

New bacteria target cancers in mice
Scientists from the Sidney Kimmel Comprehensive Cancer Center at Johns Hopkins have created bacteria that selectively target large advanced tumors in mice.

New epilepsy treatment guidelines reflect significant changes in drug choices
A notable shift is reflected in new guidelines for the treatment of adolescents and adults with epilepsy, compared to just 10 years ago.

ThermoChemistry on a chip
Dreaming of the potential of thermocouple devices? Well, perhaps you should.

The immune system and Alzheimer's disease
Utrecht researchers, funded by NWO, have determined the role played by brain cells from the immune system that are located close to dying memory cells.

Black Hole research shows English football (soccer) is 30 times more boring than football (soccer) games in rest of world
Astrophysicists at the University of Warwick studying the extreme variability in X-rays emitted from matter falling into black holes, have discovered that their research methods also show English top diviosn football (soccer) is 30 times more boring than the rest of the world's top division football (soccer) matches.

TRMM continues to provide diverse insights into climate processes on its fourth anniversary
The Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (TRMM) satellite, the world's first space mission dedicated to observing and understanding tropical rainfall, has successfully completed its fourth year of continuous data gathering by providing exciting new insight into tropical and global rainfall and hurricanes.

Analyses show water stayed on Mars longer than previously thought
An analysis of high-resolution topographic maps and photographs, as well as recent studies of Martian meteorites suggest the presence of water on the Red Planet for a longer time scale than scientists had previously believed.

Pain, price, insurance delays for new vaccines concern kids' doctors
Doctors who care for children are expressing concerns about a new infant vaccine, Prevnar, saying it's too expensive, adds yet another injection to infants' already vaccine-heavy office visits, and initially wasn't covered by many public and private insurers, creating an unequal situation for some kids.

Maternal separation causes death of brain cells - Prozac treatment reverses those changes
Rats that are separated from their mothers lose cells in the brain.

Chlorophyllin reduces Aflatoxin indicators among people at risk for liver cancer
A study conducted by researchers at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health shows that chlorophyllin intervention could prevent some environmental cancers.

Electrical brain stimulation reduces Parkinson's symptoms
Electrical brain stimulation can reduce the problems Parkinson's patients develop after long-term use of the drug levodopa, the main treatment for Parkinson's, according to a study published in the November 27 issue of Neurology, the scientific journal of the American Academy of Neurology.

Using genetic research to treat inflammatory diseases - Vienna centre of excellence in biomedicine harnesses basic research
Austria's first centre of excellence in biomedicine, Vienna based Bio Molecular Therapeutics (BMT), is going from strength to strength.

Antarctic plants repair themselves
Dutch researchers funded by NWO have studied the effects of the hole in the ozone layer on the vegetation in Antarctica. is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to