Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

July 11, 2002
Let's talk about sex -- And pain
Dr. Irv Binik, a Psychology professor at McGill and director of the Royal Victoria Sex and Couple Therapy Service, has been looking into the problem of pain during intercourse among women.

Researchers discover molecular 'switch' that tells body to store or burn fat
An enzyme called SCD-1 plays a crucial role -- through the hormone leptin -- in signaling the body to either store fat or burn it, report a team of scientists in the July 12 issue of the journal Science.

Planning better evacuations
A software application designed to assist public officials with emergency evacuation decisions is being developed by scientists at the Hazard Reduction and Recovery Center at Texas A&M University.

Academic Medicine highlights strong DMS education in patient care
Dartmouth Medical School physicians and researchers have collaborated on projects that address how to meet the challenges of teaching aspiring doctors in the outpatient setting.

Atazanavir improves cholesterol and triglyceride level in HIV patients
Atazanavir, a potent new HIV-fighting protease inhibitor, reduces high cholesterol and triglyceride levels that may be caused by other protease inhibitors, a Northwestern University researcher reported today at the XIV International AIDS Conference.

Postcode prescribing is alive and well in Scotland
Drug availability in Scotland continues to depend on local health board decisions, despite one of the intentions of the National Institute for Clinical Excellence (NICE) being to ensure that NHS patients have equitable access, argue doctors from Lothian in this week's BMJ.

Strongest medical evidence seldom considered newsworthy
The strongest medical evidence is seldom regarded as newsworthy and is underreported in British newspapers, according to researchers in this week's BMJ.

Nasal spray flu vaccine developed at U-M needs no additional clinical trials, says FDA
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has asked for additional information, but no additional clinical trials, as it considers approval of FluMist, an influenza vaccine delivered as a nasal spray.

Two thirds of adolescent Zimbabwean girls in study involved with older men
In Zimbabwe, rape is all too common and negotiating safe sex to prevent infection with HIV is almost impossible for many adolescent girls because involvement with older men in return for material benefits is widespread, according to researchers from UCSF.

NASA selects GSFC-led mission to study the role of salinity in ocean circulation and climate
As part of the Earth System Science Pathfinder small-satellite program, NASA has selected a new space mission proposal led by NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Md., that will yield fresh insight into how oceans affect and respond to climate change -- knowledge that will help better life here on Earth.

Research identifies enzyme involved in fat storage
HHMI researchers pursuing the cause of leptin's ability to boost metabolism and shed fat have identified a metabolic switch that appears to tell the body to store or burn fat.

New signaling pathway found, may be linked to movement disorders
Though previous evidence points to the contrary, scientists have discovered that the protein known as fibroblast growth factor 14 (FGF14) may not actually behave like a growth factor.

Good practice guidelines for mothers after stillbirth 'unjustified'
Authors of a UK study in this week's issue of THE LANCET suggest that guidelines introduced in the 1980s to help mothers overcome the death of a stillborn child do not appear to reduce symptoms of grief, and may actually traumatise some mothers.

High-volume hospitals equal higher survival rates for bleeding strokes
Patients are more likely to survive a stroke caused by a burst blood vessel if they are admitted to a hospital that treats these strokes more often.

Can longer consultations really save time and resources?
It has been argued that increasing the length of general practice consultations will save time and resources.

Physicians less likely to screen, but more likely to intervene, on domestic violence
Despite the fact that only a small percentage of physicians screen new patients for domestic violence compared to other health problems, their interventions are more intensive, according to new findings.

4% of HIV+ gay men have recent sexually transmitted infection
Three percent of HIV-infected gay men in New York and San Francisco had a current syphilis infection, half of one percent had a current case of chlamydia or gonorrhea when tested between 2000-2001, according to UCSF researchers.

Recognising mental illness in young people could prevent suicides
Recognising mental illness in young people and dealing with it appropriately could help prevent suicides, concludes a study in this week's BMJ.

Powerful burn-prevention video wins national award
An innovative new video that teaches about the dangers of fire through the first-person stories of children and teens who have suffered painful burn injuries has won a prestigious national award for educational films.

Growth hormone may stimulate production of T cells to boost body's ability to fight HIV
Growth hormone may stimulate the production of T cells in hiv-infected patients, research at the Gladstone Institute Of Virology and Immunology shows.

Drug developed at Duke appears effective in treating respiratory failure in newborns
Investigators from Duke University Neonatal-Perinatal Research Institute and the Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) have developed a new drug that appears in preliminary testing to be successful in treating newborns whose lungs are unable to properly oxygenate their blood.

Medical mistakes under the microscope
In 1999, the Institute of Medicine issued a scathing report on the deadly toll of medical errors that spurred a movement to increase patient safety.

Teenage boys exposed to environmental pollutants
A research letter in this week's issue of THE LANCET provides further evidence that adolescent boys exposed to organic pollutants are less likely to father a male child in adulthood.

Vogel's new book is meaty
Steven Vogel was suffering sore muscles -- ironic for a biologist who had just published a widely praised book on the science and history of muscles, from flies to humans.

Prostate cancer survival benefit from combination of androgen suppression and external irradiation
Disease-free survival from advanced prostate cancer could be almost doubled if hormone-suppression therapy is used during and after radiotherapy for a duration of 3 years, suggest authors of an international study in this week's issue of THE LANCET.

Measuring earthshine: How new terra data are improving weather and climate forecast models
A sensor aboard NASA's Terra satellite is helping scientists map how much sunlight the Earth's surface reflects back up into the atmosphere, and this new detailed information should help to greatly improve weather and forecast models.

High cholesterol elevates women's risk of stroke death
Elevated cholesterol is a risk factor for stroke death in younger women, particularly African-American women with no history of cardiovascular disease, according to a large, long-term analysis in the July issue of Stroke: Journal of the American Heart Association.

Clear outlook: Study finds no link between weather and stroke
Challenging previous reports of a little-understood link between stroke and weather, a Canadian study found no discernible connection between the two, researchers report in the July issue of Stroke: Journal of the American Heart Association.

Timely antiretroviral therapy essential for best prognosis in people with HIV-1 infection
Authors of an international study in this week's issue of THE LANCET highlight how timely treatment with highly-active antiretroviral therapy (HAART) can substantially improve the three-year prognosis for people with HIV-1 infection.

Heart-felt stress can be more dangerous to immune system
People who react to stress more in their heart than in their vascular system are more likely to suffer immune system problems, according to a new study.

Lower degrees of 'social capital' predict higher rates of sexually transmitted diseases
The amount of trust, reciprocity and cooperation among community members working together to achieve common goals -- referred to as

Astrophysicists discover possible nanodiamond formation in the early solar system
An astrophysicist from Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory's Institute for Geophysics and Planetary Physics has found that some nanodiamonds, the most famous and exotic form of stardust, may instead have formed within the inner solar system.

Scientists meet to discuss sudden oak death
Since it was discovered in 1995, Sudden Oak Death has had a devastating impact on the west coast, sending plant health scientists scrambling to find a way to control it.
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