Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

June 03, 2003
Transplanted kidneys from living donors survive longer with NeoralĀ® compared with tacrolimus
Basel, June 3rd 2003 - The long-term chances of survival of a transplanted kidney from a living donor are significantly greater with immunosuppressive therapy based on NeoralĀ® (cyclosporin microemulsion) than with therapy based on tacrolimus, according to a major new study presented today at this year's American Transplant Congress in Washington, DC, USA.1 Immunosuppressive therapy is used to help prevent the body from rejecting a transplanted organ.

Research reveals no benefit of rapid MRI over X-rays in patients with low back pain
Faster magnetic resonance imaging -- increasingly used in place of standard X-rays to diagnose patients' complaints of low back pain -- does not improve patient outcomes and may increase medical costs because of a higher number of spine operations.

Short-term exposure to estrogen cuts fish fertility
While several studies have focused on how estrogen from contraceptives may alter sex organs of juvenile fish, few studies have analyzed how exposure to estrogen affects adult fish as they make their way through rivers, lakes and streams to spawn.

Research pinpointing investors risk tolerance could massively benefit stock markets
Researchers from the University of Warwick have devised a new method of obtaining a precise understanding of a consumer's tolerance of risk.

Study finds space shuttle exhaust creates night-shining clouds
Exhaust from NASA's space shuttle, which is almost 97 percent water vapor, can travel to the Arctic in the Earth's thermosphere where it forms ice to create some of the Earth's highest clouds that literally shine at night, according to a new study led by the Naval Research Laboratory (NRL) and jointly funded by the Office of Naval Research (ONR) and NASA.

International physics meeting at Duke to address interactions between fundamental particles
About 250 scientists from more than 30 countries will gather on the Duke University campus June 5-10 for the 17th International Union of Pure and Applied Physics (IUPAP) conference on

Monoclonal antibody achieves best results for chronic lymphocytic leukemia
Pairing chemotherapy with the new monoclonal antibody, Rituximab, delivers the most effective treatment yet for chronic lymphocytic leukemia, say researchers at The University of Texas M.

Use of common anti-inflammatory drug fails to slow progression of Alzheimer's disease
Hopes that Aleve and Vioxx, two common nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, could slow the progression of Alzheimer's disease have been dashed as researchers at Georgetown University Medical Center report that neither drug tested slows cognitive deterioration.

World's leading scientists issue unprecedented plan for protecting ocean and marine life
For the first time ever, the world's largest environmental organizations, working with scientists, the business community and international governments, met specifically to develop a comprehensive and achievable agenda to reverse the decline in health of the world's ocean.

Libraries urge Justice Department to block Cinven and Candover purchase of BertelsmannSpringer
The Information Access Alliance, a group of six library organizations, is urging the U.S.

Going vegetarian?
Think that vegetarian diets are risky or just a passing phase?

Cooking oil to fight fat and cholesterol
What seems like a miracle is actually a reality. A new blend of cooking oil designed by McGill University researchers has been proven to be beneficial for weight loss.

New nanoscale device reveals behavior of individual electrons
Laptop computers can generate enough heat that, in rare cases, they actually catch fire.

Protein linked to brain cell scarring after injury
A new study links a protein discovered a few years ago at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill with formation of scar tissue that occurs after injury to nerve cells in the brain or spinal cord.

UI search for water on Mars set for June 2 launch
University of Iowa professor and space physicist Don Gurnett's $7 million, NASA-funded project to search for underground water on Mars is scheduled for launch at 12:45 p.m.

Hospitalized children experience medical errors at the same rate as adults
As healthcare leaders from around the country continue to examine ways to improve patient safety in hospitals nationwide, a new study from researchers at the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) finds that hospitalized children experience rates of medical errors similar to those of hospitalized adults.

DNA arrays diagnose, predict survival for Sezary syndrome cancer patients
Using customized DNA arrays to assess the activity of 4,500 different genes in a particular form of cancer, researchers have identified 385 genes that may play a role in the disease.

Patients lose access to neurological care, according to survey
Liability issues have forced neurologists to make hard choices about their practices, according to the results of a Professional Medical Liability Survey recently completed by the American Medical Association and the American Academy of Neurology.

Better lung cancer detection technology is needed
Lung cancer detection technology is not as accurate or reliable as doctors would like it to be.

Cloning embryos from cancer cells
Nuclei removed from mouse brain tumor cells and transplanted into mouse eggs whose own nuclei have been removed, give rise to cloned embryos with normal tissues, even though the mutations causing the cancer are still present.

Post-discharge factors could explain why poor heart disease patients have worse outcomes
A Duke University Medical Center analysis of the relationship between income and heart disease has shown that poverty is associated with worse short- and intermediate-term outcomes -- despite the fact that low- and high-income patients generally receive similar levels of care while in the hospital.

Tamoxifen effective at lower doses, study shows
Decreasing the dose of the breast cancer prevention drug tamoxifen may cut the risk of side effects associated with the drug without reducing its effectiveness, according to a pilot study in the June 4 issue of the Journal of the National Cancer Institute. The study found that 1 mg of tamoxifen a day had the same effect on reducing levels of a breast cancer proliferation marker as the standard 20 mg of tamoxifen a day.

Gleevec therapy shows promise for Kaposi's sarcoma patients
The cancer drug Gleevec has shown activity in the treatment of Kaposi's sarcoma, a malignant tumor commonly associated with the HIV virus, according to findings presented today at the annual meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO).

Engineering a solution to waste crisis
Engineers at Cardiff University, UK, are using the latest technology to update a time-honoured practice - and turn a serious environmental problem into a valuable resource.

Booster seats provide significant protection from injury through age 7
The use of belt-positioning booster seats lowers the risk of injury to children in crashes by 59 percent compared to the use of vehicle seat belts.

First quarter prescription drug spending: Generic drugs slow upward trend
Growth in prescription drug spending slowed to 11.3% during first quarter 2003 as consumers used more wallet-friendly generic drugs and, as a result of a mild flu season, fewer antihistamines and cough-cold remedies.

Johns Hopkins researchers report from the American Transplant Congress meeting
The following news tips are based on abstracts or posters to be presented at the annual meeting of the American Transplant Congress, May 30-June 4 in Washington.

High gene mutation rate may contribute to hereditary skin cancers
Researchers have discovered a high rate of ultraviolet light (UV)-inducible mutations among people with hereditary--but not sporadic--melanoma, a finding that may explain why people genetically predisposed to this deadly skin cancer are particularly sensitive to sun exposure.

Radio frequency tagging for preventing theft and tracking stocks
Tagging individual items with barely noticeable disposable electronic circuits that can be detected with a radio wave scanner is becoming increasingly common, with over 4 billion circuits sold last year.

Jefferson scientists create tobacco plant to produce antibodies against rabies
Researchers at the Biotechnology Foundation at Jefferson Medical College have genetically engineered tobacco plants to produce human proteins - antibodies - against rabies.

Pancreatic cancer genes ID'd in most accurate study to date
Being diagnosed with pancreatic cancer is like receiving a death sentence, with only 3 percent of all patients still alive five years after diagnosis.

Affymetrix to support AAAS Newcomb Cleveland Prize
Affymetrix and the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) today announced Affymetrix' support of the AAAS Newcomb Cleveland Prize.

Some with HIV have unprotected sex without disclosure
Thirteen percent of HIV-positive people are having unprotected sex with partners who are HIV-negative or uncertain of their virus status without telling these partners that they have HIV, according to a new study in the American Journal of Public Health.

St. Jude study may point the way to reducing stroke risk in African Americans
African-American children who have siblings with sickle cell disease (SCD) are more likely to have abnormal,

Researchers find treatments that preserve ovarian function in young women with cancer
Two studies by researchers at The University of Texas M.

Length of stay in medicare home care programs declines after passage of Balanced Budget Act
The median length of stay for Medicare patients in home health care programs dropped sharply after passage of the 1997 federal Balanced Budget Act, particularly among people receiving care from for-profit agencies, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center researchers report in the June 4 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association, urging more study on the effect of shortened length of stay on quality of care and patient outcomes.

University of Central Florida to help fill teaching needs with work force professionals
The Transition to Math and Science Teaching, or T-MAST, program was created through a collaboration of Lockheed Martin; Orange County, Fla., Public Schools; and UCF's College of Education to address a critical need for math and science teachers in middle schools.

Islet cells from swine reverse insulin dependency in diabetic non-human primates
At the American Transplant Congress, the University of Minnesota and Immerge BioTherapeutics, Inc., will present data showing reversal of diabetes in monkeys after transplantation with porcine islet cells.

New FPGA program techniques kick 'but'
Field Programmable Gate Arrays (FPGAS) combine the speed of dedicated, application-optimized hardware with the ability to flexibly change chip resource allocation, so the same system can run many applications, optimized for each one -- but the difficulty of programming them has limited their usefulness.

Other highlights of the June 4 JNCI
Other highlights in the June 4 issue of JNCI include a study showing an association between night shift work and risk of colorectal cancer, a study examining different personality traits and the risk of cancer, a study showing that cutaneous melanoma may develop from more than one pathway, and two studies looking at polymorphisms and prostate cancer risk.

Long-term treatment with CellCeptĀ® reduces the risk of cancer In kidney transplant patients
New data from the largest-ever* three year study of over 13,500 people with kidney transplants show a reduced risk of developing any malignancy in patients treated with CellCept (mycophenolate mofetil - MMF), compared to those receiving other immunosuppressant treatment regimens.

Antidepressant found to reduce hot flashes
Menopausal women battling hot flashes may have a new weapon to add to their arsenal: paroxetine.
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