Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

January 14, 2003
Study finds more than 1 in 10 pregnant women drink alcohol
Fifteen percent of women taking part in a study in southeastern Michigan drank alcohol during their pregnancies, although most of the women report drinking only one drink or less each week, new research finds.

Ocean report calls for the immediate creation of marine reserves throughout the United States
A network of fully protected reserves should be established immediately in all major marine habitats of the coastal United States, according to a sweeping new report on the future of America's oceans.

Alcohol's effects on testosterone
Most research has shown that alcohol inhibits testosterone secretion in male animals and humans.

Expanding the genetic code--TSRI scientists synthesize 21-amino-acid bacterium
Scientists at The Scripps Research Institute (TSRI) report in an upcoming article in the Journal of the American Chemical Society their synthesis of a form of the bacterium Escherichia coli with a genetic code that uses 21 basic amino acid building blocks to synthesize proteins--instead of the 20 found in nature.

Dinosaurs experienced climate changes before K-T collision
Climate change had little to do with the demise of the dinosaurs, but the last million years before their extinction had a complex pattern of warming and cooling events that are important to our understanding of the end of their reign, according to geologists.

Breast cancer risk is not equal in both breasts after diagnosis of a specific type of atypia
Researchers in this week's issue of The Lancet report that breast cancer risk is not equal in both breasts after a diagnosis of atypical lobular hyperplasia.

The influence of dates of birth on rates of alcoholism
For some diseases, like Alzheimer's, rates of illness increase as individuals become older.

Adjuvant chemotherapy improves survival in early-stage ovarian cancer
Results from two large European studies suggest that adjuvant chemotherapy immediately after surgery for early-stage ovarian cancer can increase some patients' chances of both overall and recurrence-free survival.

Saving energy for sex
Dr. David Greenstein and colleagues at Vanderbilt University School of Medicine (Nashville, Tennessee) have identified a sperm-sensing control mechanism through which worms can coordinate oocyte (egg cell) development with sperm availability.

Story tips from the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory, January 2003
This press release contains story ideas in the areas of transportation, instrumentation, and the environment.

Tamoxifen's benefit greatest for preventing hormone-dependent breast cancer
Tamoxifen reduces the risk of developing breast cancer, but its benefits appear to be limited to women at high risk of the hormone-dependent form of the disease, according to an updated analysis of data from a major trial of tamoxifen.

International team uses genomic tools to discover gene for childhood genetic disorder
An international team of scientists announced that they have identified a gene that causes Leigh Syndrome, French Canadian type (LSFC).

Diet during puberty influences sex hormone levels, possibly breast cancer risk
A modest reduction in fat intake during puberty is associated with changes in the levels of certain sex hormones, according to a study of adolescent girls in the January 15 issue of the Journal of the National Cancer Institute. In adults, elevated levels of sex hormones are associated with an increase in breast cancer risk.

Thalidomide therapy for multiple myeloma patients may lengthen survival, researchers report
Nearly one-third of patients with advanced multiple myeloma who had failed current standard therapy of chemotherapy or stem cell transplantation responded to thalidomide for a median duration of nearly one year in a Mayo Clinic study of the effects of thalidomide on myeloma.

Scientists hone in on cause of amphibian deformities
A dramatic increase in deformed frogs and other amphibians is being caused by a range of environmental factors, all of which ultimately can be linked to human impacts on habitat, but the primary cause of many of the deformities is an epidemic of a key parasite.

Test identifies children who are unreliable witnesses
The Video Suggestibility Scale for Children (VSSC) developed at Cornell University, which can identify which children can be easily influenced by interviewers, has been found to be highly reliable in a new study at Cornell by Stephen J.

Stream erosion may contribute to decline of American eels
Research by USDA Forest Service Southern Research Station (SRS) scientists and collaborators suggests that erosion in small freshwater streams could be a contributing factor in the decline in American eel populations recorded over the last two decades.

Patterns of alcohol consumption among African Americans are more deadly
In general, moderate drinkers show a lower mortality risk than lifetime abstainers, and heavy drinkers show a higher mortality risk than both of the other groups.

Field Museum uncovers evidence behind man-eating; revises legend of its infamous man-eating lions
If the infamous man-eating lions of Tsavo were to be tried today, they might be convicted of lesser charges.

Researchers find a strong connection between 'behavioral undercontrol' and stimulation from alcohol
Alcohol can act as a stimulant, or a sedative, or both.

Worm sex receptor identified
Vanderbilt Medical Center investigators have identified a sperm-sensing receptor in the eggs of the microscopic worm, C. elegans.

Two Max Planck researchers recieve the Louis-Jeantet Prize for Medicine 2003
The Loius-Jeantet Prize for Medicine honours each year scientists who are distinguished for the highest quality of biomedical research in Europe.

'Moss in space' project to test how plants grow 'up'
An experiment scheduled for todays Space Shuttle Columbia mission may provide clues about just how plant growth is guided by gravity.

Tips from the Journals of the American Society for Microbiology
This issue includes research on a promising strategy for ulcer vaccines, a sourdough compound that delays mold growth, and microbes harmful to the inner ear that are potentially normal in the outer ear canal.

Students' expectations, parental history linked to alcohol problems
Students with a family history of alcohol problems and students with positive expectations about alcohol's effects had an increase in drinking-related problems over the course of their first college semester, according to a new study.

Other highlights of the January 15 JNCI
Other highlights in the January 15 issue of JNCI include a study of quantitative measurement of hormone receptor levels and HER-2/neu expression, a study that found an association between mutations in a gene for a rare disease and the risk of colon cancer, and a study examining the expression of the retinoic acid receptor and risk of lung cancer in heavy smokers.

Moderate physical activity is critical for reducing the risk of chronic disease in older women
Regular, moderate-intensity exercise may be critically important for postmenopausal women who want to reduce their risk of chronic diseases.

Scientists make a BID towards understanding chronic myelomonocytic leukemia
A collaboration of scientists from Harvard Medical School has discovered that mice lacking a gene called Bid develop the murine equivalent of human chronic myelomonocytic leukemia.

Study: 15 percent of pregnant women drink alcohol
Despite widespread warnings about the potential risk of drinking alcohol during pregnancy, fifteen percent of pregnant women in a new study said they had drunk alcohol at least once during their pregnancies.

Eye's light-detection system revealed
A research team led by Johns Hopkins scientists has discovered that a special, tiny group of cells at the back of the eye help tell the brain how much light there is, causing the pupil to get bigger or smaller.

Little value seen in CT scans for lung cancer screening
Computed tomography (CT) scans widely marketed to consumers may not be valuable for mass screening of lung cancer, a Johns Hopkins study has found.

Data presented on first cloned, double knock-out miniature swine
In a session of the annual meeting of the International Embryo Transfer Society (IETS), Randall Prather, Ph.D., (University of Missouri-Columbia), announced the successful cloning of the first miniature swine with both copies of a specific gene

Nanotechnology developments poised to redefine electronics markets
Nanotechnology promises devices that are small, fast, and inexpensive. These devices are poised to enable a range of innovative products, transforming industries from medicine to transportation. 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