Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

December 05, 2002
Nursing shortage might not exist
The true extent of the NHS nursing shortage - if it exists at all - will be known only when nurses spend all their time nursing, argues Professor Steven Lewis in this week's BMJ.

Wake Forest, Pittsburgh doctors find gene behind two kidney diseases
Researchers at Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center and the University of Pittsburgh report in the current Journal of Medical Genetics that they have found defects in the gene that produces a common protein in urine and that these defects are linked to two inherited kidney diseases.

Studies dispute ultraviolet effect on amphibian population declines
It has been widely believed that increased ultraviolet-B radiation, because of thinning of atmospheric ozone, was a major culprit in deforming amphibian offspring and dwindling populations.

Robot space cowboys
Researchers are prototyping an audacious project to have pieces of the proposed half-mile-long Space Solar Power System satellite self-assemble without the help of astronauts using

New CU-NASA research belies previous idea that Mars was once warm, wet planet
A new study led by University of Colorado at Boulder researchers indicates Mars has been primarily a cold, dry planet following its formation some 4 billion years ago, making the possibility of the evolution of life there challenging at best.

Nurses no worse than junior doctors in assessing patients before surgery
Reform of junior doctors' hours has increased the pressure to use non-medical staff to assess patients before surgery.

Search for cholesterol absorption genes narrows to two chromosome regions
Two people eat the same egg, cheese and ham muffin for breakfast, yet one absorbs significantly more cholesterol into his or her blood than the other.

Sunlight and serotonin underlie seasonal mood disorders
Authors of a research letter in this week's issue of The Lancet provide further evidence that the effect of sunlight on neurotransmitters in the brain plays a significant role in seasonal mood disorders.

Climate change surprise: High carbon dioxide levels can retard plant growth, study reveals
The prevailing view among scientists is that global climate change may benefit many farmers and foresters whose crops and trees thrive on atmospheric CO2.

Patients should be more involved in the clinical trial process
Patients should be treated as participants rather than subjects during clinical trials, suggest researchers in this week's BMJ.

UC Davis to begin identifying eligible families for study on environmental factors in autism
UC Davis researchers are ready to launch the first-ever major epidemiological case-control study of up to 2,000 California children to examine genetic and environmental factors that may affect the development of autism, mental retardation and developmental delay in children.

Call for WHO elections to be more open and transparent
The fate of billions of the world's population hangs in the balance this week as 9 candidates gear up for the most important election in global health - that of the WHO's Director-General.

Researchers study screening and treatment of new immigrants for latent stage of tuberculosis
Study findings from the Inner City Health Research Unit at St.

Alternative therapies may help people with dementia
Aromatherapy and bright light treatment may have an important role in managing behavioural problems in people with dementia, conclude researchers in this week's BMJ.

Medical groups agree: Resources for treating people with Alzheimer's are available but underutilized
Care of patients with Alzheimer's disease is a challenging task, but can be improved; according to seven medical organizations that met to discuss strengths and potential pitfalls in the diagnosis and treatment of Alzheimer's disease.

Reconstructing salmon populations
In a recent study published in Ecology, Deanne C. Drake, Robert J.

Organic & Biomolecular Chemistry
The first issue of Organic & Biomolecular Chemistry, formed from the merger and strategic development of Perkin Transactions 1 & 2, will be published on 10 January 2003.

Salk Institute and SUGEN scientists map 'human kinome'
A California research team has mapped an entire group of human enzymes, providing important information for the development of a new generation of drugs to treat cancer and other diseases.

Three European astronauts to fly to the ISS in 2003
Next year three more European astronauts are scheduled to fly to the International Space Station (ISS).

Videotaping message helps black teens eat more fruits, veggies
African American adolescents who talked about healthy diet and exercise recommendations in front of a video camera increased their own fruit and vegetable intake after a 12-week program, a new study reports.

New system created by Rensselaer group speeds the mapping of blood vessel networks in live tumors
Rensselaer researchers have developed an automated system, called RPI-Trace3D, that can swiftly map capillaries in a live tumor.

Signaling pathway in melanoma could provide target for diagnosis, prevention and treatment
Scientists at Emory University School of Medicine have identified a signaling pathway that is turned on when benign moles turn into early-stage malignant melanoma.

Emory study finds most baby-boomers fall short of good health
Most baby-boomers are not aging well, and as they enter their golden years, the burden and cost of their health care will only increase according to a new Emory University study that found only one in five adults has good, comprehensive mental and physical health.

Scripps Institution researchers develop new approach for designing marine reserves
The culmination of hundreds of research dives, scientific analysis, and high-tech mapping software has led to a fundamentally new approach for designing networks of marine reserves.

Comparisons of the new mouse genome sequence
Hot on the heels of the mouse genome sequence published in this week's Nature by the Mouse Genome Sequencing Consortium of publicly funded laboratories, Genome Biology publishes the first comparison of this 'public' mouse genome sequence with the mouse genome sequence generated by the private company Celera, and with the human genome.

Genital infection may be linked to miscarriage
The genital infection, bacterial vaginosis, may be linked to miscarriage during the second trimester of pregnancy (13-15 weeks), concludes a study in this week's BMJ.

Scientists find earliest 'New World' writings in Mexico
Scientists have uncovered evidence of what is believed to be the earliest form of writing ever found in the New World.

More treatment options for women requiring emergency contraception
Results of an international study in this week's issue of The Lancet suggest that there are three effective therapeutic options for women requiring emergency contraception after sexual intercourse.

Fossil fuels for household use are viable option for world's poor
Contrary to conventional wisdom, the use of fossil fuels for household cooking and heating may make more environmental sense for the estimated 2 billion rural poor in the world, says a researcher at the University of California, Berkeley, in an editorial in this week's Science.

Combining global environmental changes yields surprising ecosystem response
Scientists have discovered that elevated atmospheric CO2 (carbon dioxide) can suppress plant growth when increases of this important greenhouse gas are combined with a broad suite of already-occurring environmental changes.The traditional view that elevated CO2 always stimulates plant growth simply isn't correct. 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