Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

December 31, 2002
Other highlights of the January 1 JNCI
Other highlights include a study suggesting that a negative Pap test combined with a negative HPV DNA test is a good indication of low cervical cancer risk, recommendations on ways to improve DNA microarray analysis and interpretation, and findings on the mechanism of oltipraz chemoprevention.

Fluorine chemists take their expertise to the sunshine state
The American Chemical Society, the world's largest scientific society, will convene its 16th biennial winter fluorine conference, Jan.

Knocking the Sox off early mammalian development
Scientists have identified a gene that is required during early mammalian embryogenesis to maintain cellular pluripotency - the ability of an embryonic cell to develop into virtually any cell type of the adult animal.

Substantial improvements in cancer trials not likely caused by placebo effects
An analysis of placebo effects in randomized double-blinded placebo-controlled trials of cancer treatments has found that placebos are sometimes associated with improved control of symptoms such as pain and appetite but rarely with objective tumor response.

New book offers 'prescriptions' for improving environmental impacts on human health
Although we're all concerned about the impact our daily lives make on the environment, few know how to improve it.

Exposure to contaminated poliovirus vaccine not likely linked to rare cancer
The poliovirus vaccine used in mass immunization programs in the late 1950s and early 1960s was contaminated with the monkey virus SV40, which has been detected in some human tumors, particularly pleural mesothelioma.

American Thoracic Society Journal news tips for January (first issue)
Newsworthy journal highlights include studies that show: maternal smoking during pregnancy alters airway structure which can lead to excessive airway narrowing in newborns; a low molecular weight catalytic antioxidant tested in baboon infants could constitute a potential therapy for a deadly lung disease in human premature newborns;and the upper airway of children with obstructive sleep apnea is significantly smaller than that of matched controls without the disease.

Anti-cholesterol statins do not reduce reproductive hormones in women of child-bearing age
A new study suggests that neither the use of statins nor low blood cholesterol levels significantly affected reproductive hormone levels in pre-, peri, or postmenopausal women.

Combination hormone therapy associated with increase in breast density
A new study suggests that the use of combination hormone therapy, but not estrogen alone, is associated with a modest increase in breast density, a known risk factor for breast cancer.
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