Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

January 22, 2002
High prevalence of malnutrition among patients who enter convalescent hospitals
Inadequate nutrition is often present in patients after discharge from an acute care hospital, and a new study indicates that malnutrition reaches epidemic proportions once patients go from the hospital to a convalescent facility.

Engineers develop odour eaters for pulp mills
Drive by a pulp and paper mill and one of the first things you'll almost certainly notice is the unmistakable smell.

Can weight loss decrease heart disease in type 2 diabetes?
More than 40 men and women from the Boston area - ranging from nurses to accountants to retirees - have already put their New Year's resolutions to lose weight and exercise more to the ultimate test by enrolling in the first long-term study to look at the effects of weight loss in people with type 2 diabetes in a nationwide study conducted locally at Massachusetts General Hospital, Joslin Diabetes Center and Beth Israel-Deaconess Medical Center.

Panel issues recommendations regarding common clinical GI procedure
An independent panel convened by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) concluded that in light of advances in medical imaging technologies, Endoscopic Retrograde Cholangiopancreatography (ERCP) is evolving into a therapeutic, rather than diagnostic tool.

Fox Chase Cancer Center offers topical gel to treat precursor to skin cancer
Researchers at Fox Chase Cancer Center are conducting an innovative clinical trial using bexarotene (Targretin®), a form of vitamin A in a topical gel, to treat parapsoriasis and prevent the disease from progressing into cancer.

Researchers investigate genes in cancer resistance
Studies on genetic resistance to certain types of cancer in rats are helping University of Toronto researchers learn more about cancer resistance in humans, according to an article in the January issue of the journal Carcinogenesis.

Counterintuitively, after extreme droughts, wading birds flourish
When rain brought an end to an intense drought in the Everglades a decade ago, wildlife biologist Peter Frederick thought there would be few wading birds left.

US female physicians' study links personal dietary habits to patient counseling
In a study examining parallels between female physicians' personal diet-related habits and the counseling they provide to their patients, Frank et al. found that each physician's experiences with her weight and the relative healthiness of her diet influence the frequency and emphasis of nutritional advice she gives to her patients.

Recovery from spinal cord injury seen in mice when scarring is minimized
A new study in mice suggests that the key to recovery from severe spinal-cord injury may lie in limiting the scarring process that generally follows such an injury, rather than in an enhanced regenerative capacity.

AAAS announces Science Journalism Award winners
AAAS recognizes twelve individuals as winners in the six categories that comprise the Science Journalism Award (SJA) competition.

'Johns' say they'll steer clear of prostitutes, says study
Most first-time 'johns' who attended a one-day seminar on the dangers of prostitution report they would not re-offend, say University of Toronto researchers.

New method speeds up discovery of materials
A new method promises to change how companies create materials -- using artificial intelligence and a technique that simultaneously tests thousands of formulations -- dramatically speeding up the discovery process.

Hospitalist care destined to become dominant model of inpatient care in the US, say UCSF researchers
The rapidly growing hospitalist model of inpatient care has now achieved many of the attributes of other medical specialties and seems destined to become the dominant model of hospital care in the United States, according to a study published in the January 23, 2002 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA).

Growth benefits of zinc in children with sickle cell disease
A study of children aged 4-10 years who had sickle cell disease evaluated the long-term effects of zinc supplementation in normalizing growth.

Study examines data withholding in academic genetics
While it is generally acknowledged that the progress of science depends on the free exchange of resources and knowledge, a new study finds that data, materials and information are often kept secret in academic genetics.

Transition counseling needed following exposure to combat situations, Yale researcher recommends
With the Vietnam War in the somewhat distant past, people need to be reminded about the crippling occupational, marital and psychological effects on soldiers who fight wars, says a Yale researcher who is studying veterans.

Scientists describe century of human impact on global surface temperature
Human activity has affected Earth's surface temperature during the last 130 years, according to a new study of greenhouse gas concentrations, human sulfur emissions, and variations in solar activity between 1865 and 1990.

Transferring traits can lead to comic result: Psychologist
Transferring personality traits from one individual to another or from an individual to an inanimate object is an automatic brain function that can lead to absurd and often amusing associations, says a University of Toronto study.

Neuroscientists searching for roots of empathy find brain regions involved in learning by imitation
In a pair of pioneering studies, a French and American team of social-cognitive neuroscientists have identified a network of brain regions that are involved in human imitation and specific brain areas that enable a person to distinguish the self from others.
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