Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

March 24, 2003
Encrustation provides clues about ancient seas
The encrustation of seashells provides a great deal of ecological data or, for fossils, paleoecological data, which researchers are just beginning to look at.

Emory University to lead $10 million prostate cancer project
The Winship Cancer Institute of Emory University announced today that it has been awarded a $10 million grant from the U.S.

New website features live webcast with Dr. Gregory Stock and Bill McKibben
The Alliance for Aging Research today announces the launch of
How loneliness and health risks of older men go unseen
The lifestyles of lone older men, including dangers to their health, are almost invisible in a society which measures the quality of elderly people's lives with a 'feminine ruler', according to new research sponsored by the ESRC.

American Thoracic Society Journal news tips for April 2003 (first issue)
Newsworthy research includes studies showing that: investigators have developed a new Composite Physiologic Index that more effectively shows the structural extent of pulmonary fibrosis in patients; and, in the future, stem cells could be used to replace dying lung cells in acute lung injury and its most serious form, acute respiratory distress syndrome.

More efficient and reliable refrigerators and air conditioners a step closer to reality
Scientists at Research Triangle Institute have created the world's first working device that uses nanometer-scale materials to convert electric power into cooling or heating, or heat into electricity.

Study provides new evidence that cranberry juice may help fight heart disease
There's more good news about cranberry juice: Based on human studies, researchers have found that drinking three glasses a day significantly raises levels of

Chemical force microscopy chooses materials for lightweight nanotube-based composites
A microscopy technique originally developed to image the molecular-scale topography of surfaces is now helping engineers choose the right materials for a new generation of lightweight high-strength composites based on carbon nanotubes.

APOE genotype identified as risk factor for diabetic peripheral neuropathy
A cross-sectional study has convinced some researchers that the APOE genotype is a risk factor for diabetic neuropathy severity equal to having 15 extra years of age or diabetes duration.

New study reveals that only men are at greater risk of developing rheumatoid arthritis by smoking
New research from Stanford University, published in the latest issue of Arthritis Research & Therapy, investigates the complex interactions between smoking and rheumatoid arthritis in men and women.

A subtle tool to study mankind's diseases
Up until recently, the technology to artificially remove and add bits of DNA to an organism's genome has been limited to small segments of DNA.

Embryonic facial development subject to insult or repair longer than expected
The sculpting of the face during embryonic development - the physical molding that determines what we will look like - may remain open to change much longer than had been thought, according to research by UCSF scientists.

Porous ceramic can sort proteins magnetically
Cornell University materials scientists have incorporated tiny magnetic particles of iron oxide into the walls of porous ceramic structures in a simple

Molecules designed to interfere with DNA upon signal
Many scientists are trying to develop compounds that can be released upon command in the presence of disease cells.

New 'spin-in' business is out of this world
Newcastle University, UK, which is a world leader in the field of geomatics - the modern name for surveying which uses satellite technology and other advanced methods - has set up a new consultancy offering geomatics solutions to business problems.

Redheaded women respond better to painkilling drug
A gene associated with red hair and fair skin may also be responsible for how females respond to painkillers, according to a study conducted by lead researcher Jeffrey Mogil, a psychology professor at Canada's McGill University, and collaborators in the United States.

Los Alamos flips the mercury 'off' switch
Mercury, that silvery liquid metal ubiquitous in switches, pressure gauges and thermometers, is an environmental bad-boy and toxic to humans through inhalation, skin contact and ingestion.

Pakistani and Afghani drug users at high HIV risk
Reseachers from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health found that only 16 percent of Pakistani and Afghani male drug injectors who participated in a recent study lack basic knowledge of HIV and the risk factors that lead to infection.

Geologists meet in Kansas City
Geoscientists from around the country are gathering this week in Kansas City at a meeting of the North-Central Section of the Geological Society of America.

How immigration is improving the UK labour market
Fears that EU enlargement will unleash a great wave of migrants into western European labour markets - where they will take over local jobs causing increased unemployment and depressed wages - are unfounded, according to new research by Professor Roger Vickerman.

Morphine-like painkiller appears to be less addictive
Move over, morphine: Researchers at the University of Arizona and the University of New England have developed a new narcotic based on a natural painkiller found in the body that appears in animal studies to be more potent but less addictive.

DNA-repair protein functions differently in different organisms
Plants, pond scum, and even organisms that live where the sun doesn't shine have something that humans do not -- an enzyme that repairs DNA damaged by ultraviolet (UV) light.

Phase III study results with Raptiva™ in the treatment of psoriasis presented at Annual AAD meeting
Genentech and XOMA announced positive results from a randomized Phase III clinical trial with RaptivaTM (efalizumab) that studied efficacy and safety in the treatment of adults with moderate-to-severe plaque psoriasis.

Geologists focus on area water quality, earthquakes, climate, and history
Highlights from the 37th annual meeting, North-Central Section, of the Geological Society of America include presentations on water quality, earthquakes and the history associated with Lewis and Clark's

Researchers discover gene that contributes to sense of balance
Researchers have discovered a gene that appears to be critical for maintaining a healthy sense of balance in mice.

Scientist says recent UNC research suggests better nerve agent treatment
Research conducted at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in rats suggests that a promising new treatment for nerve agent toxicity may exist, and scientists involved in the experiments say further work should reveal the most appropriate conditions and timing for its use.

Powered by your liquor cabinet, 'biofuel cell' could replace rechargeable batteries
Scientists at Saint Louis University have developed a new type of biofuel cell that can be recharged instantly with a few drops of alcohol.

Engineers create world's first transparent transistor
Engineers at Oregon State University have created the world's first transparent transistor, a see-through electronics component that could open the door to a new industry.

Mayo Clinic study establishes 'new paradigm' for coronary artery disease
A key component of blockages in the heart's blood vessels appears to originate in the bone marrow instead of the vessel walls, according to findings published this week in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Results from open-label Raptiva™ study suggest continued benefit with long-term treatment
Genentech and XOMA today announced preliminary results from an open-label, multicenter trial evaluating the long-term safety and tolerability of continuous RaptivaTM (efalizumab) treatment in patients with moderate-to-severe psoriasis.

Motor oil of the future may come from veggies
Vegetable oil similar to the stuff you use to cook your food may one day fill your car's engine.

New high-purity plutonium sources produced at Los Alamos
For the first time since 1987, new high-purity plutonium sources for use as primary analytical chemistry standards have been produced at Los Alamos National Laboratory using a new extrusion method developed at the Laboratory.

Statins before procedures reduce cardiovascular events and death
Taking cholesterol-lowering drugs before undergoing artery-clearing procedures appears to reduce deaths, heart attacks, and recurrent blockages among patients with elevated levels of an inflammation marker, according to research reported in today's rapid access issue of Circulation: Journal of the American Heart Association.

Nature inspires DNA/protein
A new generation of nanoscale devices are being developed based on inspiration found in nature.

A new class of catalysts will help boost production, quality of transportation fuels
Virginia Tech chemical engineering professor S.T. (

Researchers say electronic diaries help migraine sufferers learn to predict headache onset
Fatigue, difficulty concentrating and a stiff neck can be tell-tell signs that a headache is coming, as many migraine sufferers already know.

Study of insecticide neurotoxicity yields clues to onset of Parkinson's Disease
Some insecticides may cause a cascade of chemical events in the brain that could lead to Parkinson's Disease.

Hypertension-related eye damage more common in blacks than whites
For the first time, researchers have shown that hypertensive retinopathy, a form of blood vessel damage in the eye, is twice as common in African Americans as in Caucasians, according to a study in today's rapid access issue of Hypertension: Journal of the American Heart Association.
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