Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

May 12, 2003
Alcohol increases rectal cancer risk, but risk is smaller among regular wine drinkers
Regular drinkers significantly increase their risk of rectal cancer, but that risk is reduced if wine makes up a third or more of weekly consumption.

For best results, stick to one search engine
Web users who stick to one or two search engines and learn those well will have better results for their queries than users who try the same query or various engines, a Penn State researcher says.

Should Memphis build for California's earthquakes?
The federal government is urging Memphis and other parts of the Midwest to adopt a new building code that would make buildings as earthquake resistant as those in southern California, where shaking is much more likely to seriously damage a building than in the New Madrid seismic zone (NMSZ).

Epilepsy in developing countries often left untreated
A new study shows that the number of people with epilepsy in rural areas of China and the number who are not adequately treated are even higher than previously estimated.

Researchers get to the root of cassava's cyanide-producing abilities
Cassava is the third-most important food source in tropical countries, but it has one major problem: The roots and leaves of poorly processed cassava plants contain a substance that, when eaten, can trigger the production of cyanide.

Setting boundaries between work and life helps families thrive
With e-mail at home, cell calls to the boss on the way to work, and text messaging the next appointment, home and office seem indistinguishable.

Fetus heart races when mom reads poetry
New research findings show that a fetus can recognize its mother's voice and even distinguish it from other female voices.

New virtual reality array allows immersive experience without the disorienting 3-D goggles
The University of Pennsylvania has installed a virtual reality system that allows a participant full-body interaction with a virtual environment without the hassle of bulky, dizzying 3-D glasses.

Gene that controls susceptibility to tuberculosis discovered
Investigators at the Research Institute of the McGill University Health Centre (MUHC) have identified a gene that regulates the susceptibility to tuberculosis.

Astronomers map the hidden Universe
Astronomers from Cardiff University, UK are completing the first survey ever for cosmic hydrogen, the primeval gas which emerged from the Big Bang to form all the stars and galaxies we can see today.

Study shows molecular analysis of early breast cancer lesions may be key to choosing best treatment
A team of researchers from Massachusetts General Hospital and the biotechnology company Arcturus has discovered molecular changes occurring in early stages of breast cancer that characterize the aggressive potential of the tumor.

Computational method identifies genes that regulate cell's machinery
An interdisciplinary team of researchers from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Stanford University and Tel Aviv University has developed the first computational method that can identify clusters of genes responsible for controlling processes within a cell, when those clusters become active, and, most importantly, how the clusters are regulated.

Online classes provide better way to teach global education, researcher says
Web-based college classes are more than just a technological novelty for graduate students who are learning global education, according to an Ohio State University researcher.

Eunice Park named a 2003 Hartford Doctoral Fellow
The John A. Hartford Foundation of New York City and The Gerontological Society of America (GSA) has selected Eunice Park as a Hartford Doctoral Fellow.

Doctors find patient relationships highlight of profession
According to a Regenstrief Institute and Indiana University School of Medicine study published in Annals of Internal Medicine, both male and female physicians say they find relationships with patients the most meaningful element of their work.

Gene analysis finds 'fingerprint' of defects in heart development
Using a multiple-gene analysis technique, German researchers have gained new insights into specific genetic alterations that lead to congenital heart defects.

Electron beam CT helps with risk assessment
Electron beam computed tomography (EBCT) scans can help doctors predict whether otherwise-healthy people with risk factors such as high blood pressure or elevated cholesterol will develop heart disease.

BioScience Managers and Imperial College London to raise UKP50 million venture fund
BioScience Managers Limited (BML), the specialist bioscience fund manager, and Imperial College London, one of the world's leading science-based universities, today announced a joint initiative to raise a new venture capital fund focused on early stage medical and life science companies.

Drug-naive schizophrenia: The dopamine connection
Several studies have suggested the importance of cortical dopamine transmission in the pathophysiology of schizophrenia.

High calorie diet seems to increase chances of surviving bowel cancer for longer
A high calorie diet seems to lengthen survival time after a diagnosis of bowel cancer.

New sensor bares faults in smallest possible, most advanced circuits
Scientists at Brown University have created a magnetic-sensing microscope that allows them to watch electricity flow through the world's tiniest components.

DuPont R&D leader named American Academy of Arts and Sciences Fellow
The American Academy of Arts and Sciences today announced that DuPont vice president of Central Research and Development Uma Chowdhry has been named among its newly-elected Fellows.

Unique NASA satellite watches rainfall from space
Your local weather forecaster uses Doppler radar systems, covering U.S.

Neurology study 'fraught with design flaws,' according to American Chiropractic Association
A May 13 study in the journal Neurology claiming that chiropractic neck manipulation is a risk factor for strokes resulting from vertebral artery dissections is fraught with design flaws, provides little new and useful information, and needlessly alarms the public about a safe and effective form of treatment for neck pain and headaches, according to the American Chiropractic Association (ACA).

Max Planck supports open access to research
The Max Planck Society has become a BioMed Central Institutional Member.

Two genes found to influence anorexia nervosa
An international team identified two genes associated with anorexia nervosa (AN).

Public doesn't know symptoms of mini-stroke; Many with symptoms don't seek medical attention
Public education is needed about the symptoms and risks of mini-stroke, also called transient ischemic attack or TIA, according to the first large study on the topic, which is published in the May 13 issue of Neurology, the scientific journal of the American Academy of Neurology.

U.S. scholarly organizations unite to protect Iraqi cultural heritage
Representatives of major scholarly societies and research centers active in archaeological and cultural work in Iraq met on Tuesday, May 6 at the Institute for Fine Arts of New York University in conjunction with the opening ceremonies for the exhibition on the Art of the First Cities: The Third Millennium B.C. from the Mediterranean to the Indus organized by the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York.

Reduced daily eye patching effectively treats childhood's most common eye disorder
A study conducted at Emory Eye Center and 35 other clinical sites found that patching the unaffected eye of children with moderate amblyopia for two hours daily works as well as patching the eye for six hours.

Vaccination halts progression of atherosclerosis in animal studies, UCSD researchers report
UCSD researchers have shown in mice that a vaccine for pneumonia also triggers elements of the immune system to reduce atherosclerosis, the build-up of fatty deposits and chronic inflammation in blood vessels, which leads to heart attacks and stroke.

Protein mimetics could lead to more successful coronary bypasses
Severe spasm of blood vessels contributes to the failure of coronary bypass surgeries and to strokes following the rupture of an aneurysm in the brain.

Reduced daily eye patching effectively treats 'lazy eye'
Researchers at the Johns Hopkins Children's Center and 34 other ophthalmology centers across North America report that in children with moderate amblyopia, or

Nine chosen to receive funding for geriatric social work research
The John A. Hartford Foundation will fund nine scholars' research projects focused on evaluating and improving the field of geriatric social work.

National Science Board's annual Public Service Award
The National Science Board (NSB) today announced former astronaut Kathryn D.

Heat zapps bone tumors
A team of radiologists and orthopedic specialists at Johns Hopkins Medicine has successfully used heat generated by electrode-tipped probes to destroy painful, benign bone tumors in eight of nine patients in a clinical study.

Chiropractic treatment of the neck can be a risk factor for stroke
A retrospective study of stroke cases at two major academic medical centers, led by University of California, San Francisco neurologists, indicates that chiropractic manipulation of the neck can cause vertebral artery dissection, a tearing of the vertebral artery leading to the brain that causes stroke or transient ischemic attack (TIA).

Women benefit from rehab programs following heart complications, despite lack of referrals
Physicians are often reluctant to refer older women to cardiac rehabilitation (CR) programs following a heart attack or surgery, but a University of Alberta study shows not only does CR improve physical function--such as perception of one's strength, how much one can work at usual tasks and how much one tires--but the quality of life (QOL) as well.

Molecule helps prevent inflammation and heart disease in fat-fed mice
A molecule thought to contribute to the development of heart disease appears instead to help suppress it, according to research at Washington University School of Medicine in St.

Gene mutation in some uterine tumors may signal that cancer runs in family
Testing younger women with endometrial cancer for mutations in a certain gene might help identify families at risk for inherited cancers, according to a study led by Washington University School of Medicine in St.

Neck and spine adjustments linked to increased risk of stroke
Neck and spine adjustments by chiropractors and other practitioners can increase the risk of stroke, according to a study published in the May 13 issue of Neurology, the scientific journal of the American Academy of Neurology.

Less death on British roads thanks to medical advances says new study
Improvements in medical technology and better medical care can take much credit for reducing the death toll from accidents on Britain's roads according to new research by transport policy experts at Imperial College London.

Pattern recognition method zeroes in on genes that regulate cell's genetic machinery
Using a new technique for recognizing patterns in biological databases, a team of US and Israeli computer scientists and geneticists have developed a practical computational method that zeroes in on the genes responsible for controlling the genetic machinery of a cell.

Trio of trouble: Infection, autoimmunity & inflammation gang up on heart
Chronic infections, autoimmune conditions and inflammation work together to increase the risk of heart disease, according to the first study to examine a possible relationship between the three conditions and the development of heart attacks.

Early-life environments shape development of stress behaviors and learning abilities in mice
Genetically identical mice placed in different environments both pre- and post-natally differ dramatically as adults in their stress responses and learning abilities.

Concerns over peanut allergy
In this issue of CMAJ, Dr. Rhoda Kagen and colleagues provide a comprehensive review of the prevalence of peanut allergy, which causes the largest number of severe reactions, presents early in life and rarely resolves.

Does TV turn people off politics?
Television news programmes may be contributing to current political apathy, according to a new report funded by the Economic and Social Research Council.

Society of Nuclear Medicine 50th Annual Meeting
When nuclear medicine physicians, scientists, pharmacists and technologists gather in New Orleans from June 21-25 for the Society of Nuclear Medicine's 50th Annual Meeting, there will be more news to share than one press briefing can hold. 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