Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

August 19, 2002
New Geocentrifuge Research Laboratory coming online
The Department of Energy's Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory in collaboration with Bechtel National are launching a new user facility dedicated to environmental and geo-engineering research.

Occupational therapy is cost effective, significantly improves quality of life for seniors
Preventive occupational therapy is a cost-effective health care intervention for independent-living senior citizens, according to a University of Southern California study published this month in the Journal of American Geriatrics Society.

Would 'race' disappear if the United States officially stopped measuring it?
What if the U.S. government stopped measuring race? Would the results be positive, negative, or indifferent?

Anti-inflammatory drug reduces growth of cancerous tumors In rats
Research led by a nurse investigator at Johns Hopkins has found that a pain reliever commonly used to treat serious and painful forms of arthritis may also reduce the growth of malignant tumors after cancer surgery.

Puerto Rican women influenced more by quality of medical care than doctor's ethnicity
Among Puerto Rican women living in the United States, empathy (sympatia) and mutual respect (dignidad) are more important priorities in choosing a doctor than the doctor's ethnicity, according to a Penn State study.

Honey fights cholesterol as well as some fruits and vegetables
Honey contains about the same level of antioxidants as spinach and is comparable to the levels found in apples, bananas, oranges and strawberries, according to a University of Illinois study of men who drank a mixture of water and honey.

Transplantation Society Congress
The XIX International Congress of The Transplantation Society will be held Aug.

Pediatric autopsies
Technology advances have facilitated routine postmortem screening for metabolic disorders that cause death in some infants and children, rather than SIDS.

New AIDS drug discoveries to battle drug-resistant HIV strains
Belgian and American scientists have collaborated in discovering several new potential anti-AIDS drugs, including compounds that can block all known drug-resistant strains of the virus.

American Thoracic Society Journal news tips for August (second issue)
Newsworthy journal highlights include research showing asthma and wheezing asociated with fetal exposure to maternal smoking in children who had a common genetic susceptibility and how low weight patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease had more muscle atrophy and worse exercise capcity than did those with normal weight.

Promising multi-strain HIV vaccine candidate emerges
AIDS researcher at the University of Maryland Biotechnology Institute have developed a candidate vaccine strategy that, for the first time, demonstrates an ability to elicit antibodies that block the infection of multiple HIV virus strains -- an elusive scientific goal that has been pursued for a decade.

Annals of Internal Medicine Aug. 20 tip sheet
Subjects in this issue include: 'Flu vaccination cost-effective for all adults, not just older people,' and 'Hormone replacement therapy does not prevent or reduce the rate of developing heart disease, new review says.'

Ending at square 1: Does order of good & bad events matter to consumers?
In these roller coaster times for the economy, there is qualified hope: operations researchers report that peoples' reaction to a sequence of occurrences in which an initial event is unexpectedly reversed is more favorable if the first event is a loss than if it is a gain, according to a study in a journal of the Institute for Operations Research and the Management Sciences (INFORMSĀ®).

MRI studies provide new insight into how emotions interfere with staying focused
Duke University researchers have shown how emotions such as fear or horror travel along separate paths through the brain and are more likely than simple distractions to interfere with a person's efforts to focus on a task such as driving.

'Jolly fat' hypothesis doesn't carry weight
A team of researchers asks in a new health journal article,

High levels of C-reactive protein indicate early heart disease
Using a simple, inexpensive test to determine levels of C-reactive protein in the blood, researchers were able to detect heart disease before symptoms were apparent, according to a report in today's rapid access issue of Circulation: Journal of the American Heart Association.

Low-income mothers' mental health may soften the impact of growing up in poverty
Growing up in poverty can cause depression and low self-esteem in adolescents, but having a caring mother who feels in control of her life can reduce this effect, says a Penn State researcher.

Obstacles fall to feasibility of hybrid fuel cell vehicle
A series of obstacles fell before the onslaught of a Penn State engineering graduate class as they tackled and found solutions to all the barriers preventing development of a hybrid fuel cell automobile using hydrogen fuel cells and battery storage.

Study identifies hypertension patients who can benefit from the little used diuretic amiloride
A study conducted by a team of Alabama researchers, led by James K.

Enzyme level linked to death after angioplasty
A test commonly used to diagnose heart attacks may also identify patients at increased risk of death after balloon angioplasty, according to a study in today's rapid access issue of Circulation: Journal of the American Heart Association.

Antibiotics help heart patients
In the largest study of its kind published to date, researchers report that hospitalized heart patients who took antibiotics had a significantly lower risk of returning to the hospital with severe chest pain within one year compared with those on a placebo.

Something to write home about: Journaling can help after trauma
Keeping a journal of one's feelings about a traumatic experience, as well as the effort to mentally process that experience, can help people effectively work through it, according to a new study.

$1.2 million grant backs study of environmental stress, cancer origins
Five collaborative research initiatives at Emory University will investigate DNA repair, damage tolerance, and damage prevention in response to radiation or chemical agents that can corrupt cellular DNA.

Almonds have cholesterol benefits
Almonds significantly lowered bad cholesterol levels in a study of people with high cholesterol reported in today's rapid access issue of Circulation: Journal of the American Heart Association.

Religion used to justify superiority of white Americans in 19th Century
During the 19th century, many White Americans used religion to create an identity as a new chosen people with a divine commission to convert non-White Americans into Christians and thus one hundred percent Americans, according to a Penn State sociologist of religion.

Racial profiling across social institutions is featured in plenary session
Racial profiling is widely associated with

Cancer revealed: New $10M grant establishes cancer imaging center
A new $10 million grant will help develop medical-imaging scans that may tell future cancer patients and their doctors not only where their tumors are, but also how fast their cancer is growing, what genes inside their cancerous cells have mutated, what treatments might kill their cancer most effectively, and whether or not they're responding to treatment.

Food irradiation is focus of two-day symposium, Aug. 19-20
The majority of the scientific and medical community agree that irradiation of food is a safe way to reduce or eliminate harmful bacteria.

Stanford researcher shows flu shot benefits outweigh costs in healthy young adults
Flu shots can save lives, especially among the elderly who account for most of the 20,000 flu-related deaths in the United States each year.
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