Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

May 02, 2002
Deaths by drowning fall, but pools abroad still 'a major concern'
The number of children drowning in the United Kingdom has declined between 1988-89 and 1998-99.

Scientists produce long, hair-like nanotubes
For the first time, researchers have created a simplified method for making long, continuous, hair-like strands of carbon nanotubes that are as much as eight inches in length.

Natural compound used in India reduces cholesterol by blocking metabolism-controlling receptor
UT Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas researchers have helped prove that a naturally occurring compound used for centuries as a dietary supplement in India can help lower cholesterol levels.

Pentoxifylline beneficial for treating leg ulcers
Results of a systematic review in this week's issue of THE LANCET suggest that the drug pentoxifylline could be effective in the treatment of leg ulcers, either in addition to compression therapy, or as sole treatment when compression therapy is not effective.

Planning could preserve urban forests for future enjoyment
Provisions for fire prevention and fire fighting including restrictions on campfires, prevention of illegal dumping and control of tree vandalism can go a long way toward maintaining the viability of urban forests, according to a Penn State researcher.

Hopkins scientists reveal how sound becomes electric
Scientists from The Center for Hearing and Balance at Johns Hopkins have discovered how tiny cells in the inner ear change sound into an electrical signal the brain can understand.

Gene may link alcohol drinking and stress, mouse study suggests in Science
Variations in a key stress response gene may suggest a link between alcohol drinking and stress in mice.

Heavy drinkers bear the heavy burden of bleeding stroke
Getting America's heavy drinkers to cut down may be one of the most important ways to reduce the burden of hemorrhagic (bleeding) stroke.

A new weapon to disable bacteria discovered
The mechanism with which blood cells use an enzyme, called elastase, to neutralize the bacterial defenses that cause disease, was discovered by researchers Arturo Zychlinsky at the Max Planck Institute for Infection Biology in Berlin and Yvette Weinrauch at New York University School of Medicine (Nature, 2.

Study: Showering boosts concentrations of potentially hazardous trihalomethanes
Trihalomethanes -- byproducts of interaction between chlorine used to disinfect water and organic matter found in raw water -- increase significantly in the bloodstream after showering, a new study shows.

Ancient flower fossil points to underwater origins
The world's oldest known flower never bloomed, but it has opened scientific questions into whether all of modern flowering plants share underwater origins.

Number of teens --primarily boys -- having sex declined in '90s
Birds do it. Bees do it. But fewer teen-age boys are doing it.

American Thoracic Society Journal news tips for May (first issue)
Newsworthy articles include research showing that: a group of 23 Australian infants with flow limitation in expiratory breathing at 4 weeks of age continued to have reduced lung function and increased airway resistance through age 11; rhinovirus infection leads to increased disease severity in infants with acute bronchiolitis; and women with sickle cell disease can safely perform maximal cardiopulmonary exercise if allowed to stop their activity when the need arises.

American Cancer Society funds Space Station scientist who studies how good cells turn bad
To understand how basic molecular processes cause breast cancer, the American Cancer Society has awarded a $768,000, four-year grant to Dr.

Stroke survivors have brittler bones, more likely to fracture
Doctors may need to add treatment for osteoporosis to stroke rehabilitation therapy.

Scientist explores the future of research collaboration
Why do scientists collaborate? asks Donald deB. Beaver in

American Stroke Association kicks off American Stroke Month
If you asked 1,000 people what health threat they fear the most, how many would say

Foods rich in folate may reduce risk of stroke
For the first time, high dietary folate was found to decrease the incidence of stroke, according to a 20-year study.

Controlled crying reduces infant sleep problems
Teaching mothers how to implement controlled crying techniques can reduce infant sleep problems and symptoms of postnatal depression, finds a study in this week's BMJ.

General public fails to recognise early signs of stroke
The general public does not find it easy to recognise the early symptoms of stroke because they vary so much, and this often results in delay in seeking medical attention, finds a study in this week's BMJ.

Stem cells help brain repair, make new neurons and blood vessels after stroke
In the first hours and days following a stroke, stem cells leave the bone marrow to help the injured brain repair damaged neurons and make new neurons and blood vessels, according to researchers at the Medical College of Georgia.

Disorder forces DNA molecules out of tight spaces
A new understanding of how large biological molecules behave in tiny spaces could lead to a method for separating DNA strands by length.

European research area creates new opportunities for cooperation
Dr. Achilleas Mitsos, Director General for Research of the European Commission, will address the importance of integrating European research at the seminar,

Early promise of simple test for diagnosing malignant hyperthermia
German authors of a research letter in this week's issue of THE LANCET describe the potential of a straightforward test for identifying people at risk of the often fatal reaction to general anaesthetics, a syndrome known as malignant hyperthermia.

Looking for clues about how proteins talk to each other
Proteins perform distinct and very well-defined tasks, but little is known about how interactions among them are structured at the cellular level.

Basic macromolecular research aimed at national defense technologies
Advanced defense technologies is one focus of fundamental research into novel macromolecular compositions being conducted by scientists at three universities who have received a multimillion dollar DOD grant.

Steroid pill prolongs survival in patients with multiple myeloma
Researchers at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center report that treatment with a steroid pill improves the overall survival of patients with multiple myeloma, a cancer of the plasma cells in bone marrow.

Research highights from Pacific Northwest National Laboratory
This quarterly news tipsheet highlights research conducted at the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory.

UF expert: ancient fossil suggests flowers may be underwater gift
The world's oldest known flower never bloomed, but it has opened scientific questioning into whether all of today's flowering plants had their origins from beneath ancient waters, says a University of Florida researcher.

Natural cholesterol-lowerer shows the way
Baylor College of Medicine scientists studying a natural product used in Indian traditional medicine for more than 2,500 years have unlocked the secret to its cholesterol-lowering success and possibly opened the door to production of more potent medicines.

Long-term safety data on Xalatan presented
Data presented for the first time at the XXIXth International Congress of Ophthalmology in Sydney, Australia, show that long-term (5-year) adjunctive treatment with XALATAN® (latanoprost ophthalmic solution) presented no new safety concerns and effectively lowered intra-ocular pressure (IOP) in patients with open-angle glaucoma (OAG).

American Chemical Society to honor Albert Szent-Györgyi
Work of Hungarian biochemist honored with international historic chemical landmark status for discoveries in connection with the biological combustion process, with special reference to vitamin C and the catalysis of fumaric acid.

New treatment for difficult-to-treat inflammatory disease
Hypereosinophilic syndrome (HES) is an occasional disorder in which eosinophils, a type of inflammation-causing white blood cell, increase to excessive levels in the blood.

Study suggests global extinction crisis more serious than previously thought
Singling out vulnerable species for protection has been an important conservation tool for nearly 30 years.

Researchers identify cell, genetic environment behind nerve-tissue tumors that lead to cancer
Researchers at UT Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas believe they are hot on the trail of a way to prevent benign tumors that attack the nervous system and can be precursors to terminal cancer.

Infliximab could offer long-term benefits to people with Crohn's disease
Sustained use of the drug infliximab could offer substantial clinical benefit to people with Crohn's disease, conclude authors of a study in this week's issue of THE LANCET.

EMBO Award for Communication in the Life Sciences
This year for the first time EMBO will award Euro 5,000 and a silver medal for outstanding works of public communication in the life sciences.

Thunderstorms are affected by pollution
A NASA-funded researcher has discovered that tiny airborne particles of pollution may modify developing thunderclouds by increasing the quantity and reducing the size of ice crystals within them.

Study shows infliximab can prolong remissions in Crohn's disease
Sustained treatment with the monoclonal antibody infliximab prolongs remissions in patients with Crohn's disease.

UCSF, UC Davis establish joint pediatric heart center
Two top Northern California academic medical institutions have joined forces to establish a world-class pediatric heart center in Sacramento that will identify and treat infants and children born with congenital heart disease.

Successful measles vaccination feasible in low-income countries
Results of a study in this week's issue of THE LANCET highlight the success of a WHO-recommended measles elimination strategy in southern Africa.

Electricity can pump medicine in implanted medical devices
Engineers at Ohio State University have developed a computer model to help tiny medical implants dispense drugs on demand -- electrically.

Bidding goodbye to borders: migration in the new Europe
New research shows that the economic impact of labour mobility is largely positive, both in the home and host countries, and can improve labour flexibility in Europe.

Leprosy bug provides clues to early nerve degeneration
In the May 3 issue of Science, scientists at Rockefeller University and New York University School of Medicine report that the nerve damage that leads to a loss of sensation and disability of people with leprosy occurs in the early stages of infection.
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