Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

August 12, 2003
Researcher invents new graphing method
Researchers at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health have developed a new Diamond Graph method to replace the inaccurate and misleading three-dimensional bar graph, which is used in computer programs, scientific journals and newspapers to display financial, medical and other information.

JAMA study: Medicare coverage boosts cancer, cholesterol screening for previously uninsured adults
Gaining access to Medicare coverage substantially improved uninsured older adults' use of clinical preventive measures such as cholesterol testing, mammography, and prostate exams, compared with a similar group of insured adults, according to a new study in the August 13 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA).

Genetic risks for disease often missing from patient charts
Standard history-taking in internal medicine practices may not fully capture patients' risks for developing certain diseases and internists may lose opportunities to provide preventive medical recommendations, according to a study from Northwestern University.

Finding dirty bombs and other radiation threats
NIST is working with the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers and the American National Standards Institute to develop new standards for a variety of radiation detectors and monitors.

Extraordinary Number of unique species discovered in Caribbean
The Caribbean Sea has the greatest concentration of marine life in the entire Atlantic and is home to hundreds of species that live only in precariously small areas, making life there far richer and more delicate than previously thought, according to a new study.

Overcoming fear: New book by SLU professor gives agoraphobics a step-by-step guide
A national expert on anxiety disorders offers advice to help people who have agoraphobia recover.

Chlamydia infection prevalent among female army recruits
Nearly 10 percent of female Army recruits tested positive for the bacteria that causes the sexually transmitted disease chlamydia (Chlamydia trachomatis), according to researchers from Johns Hopkins, the Department of Defense and the Army.

Training mechanics online
Well-trained mechanics keep the motor industry on the road. Now, a combination of hardware training systems, innovative software and webcams means trainee mechanics or automotive technology students can learn without travelling to their instructors' offices.

Speakers, musicians both change their tempo to more closely match others, study finds
People change the rate at which they speak or play music to more closely match speakers or musicians they have just heard, new research suggests.

Recent study suggests that tooth loss/gum disease may be associated with heart disease
The September issue of Stroke: Journal of the American Heart Association, identified a potential link between tooth loss and atherosclerosis, which can lead to stroke or heart attack.

NIST helps chip industry measure features by counting atoms
In a quest to develop a nanotechnology equivalent of a ruler, NIST researchers have developed a novel device that can resolve distances smaller than the radius of an atom and a reliable method for writing 10-nanometer features on silicon.

UC Riverside geneticist awarded $2.4 million grant by the National Science Foundation
Tim Close, professor of genetics in the department of botany and plant sciences at UC Riverside, has been awarded a $2.4 million grant by the National Science Foundation for a project that will facilitate researchers' access to the barley genome to build a fuller understanding of cereal plant traits relevant to agriculture and biology.

Endostatin promising treatments for AIDS-related cancer
New research suggests that the anti-tumor compound endostatin delivers a one-two punch to Kaposi's sarcoma - the most common AIDS-related cancer.

Schizophrenia could cause patients to forget their medication
Patients with schizophrenia must take medication regularly to reduce their risk of relapse.

Aurora student design competition finalists
Student teams from all over Europe and Canada have been flocking to enter the Aurora design competition since its inception in January.

Study shows new drug reduces advanced Parkinson's disease symptoms
After 40 years of treating Parkinson's disease with dopamine medications, a new study shows potential for a non-dopamine drug that may benefit patients with advanced Parkinson's disease.

Fred Hutchinson uses IBM technology to help find genetic links to immune-system diseases
Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center today announced that its researchers are using IBM technology to help discover why some people are more susceptible than others to infectious and autoimmune diseases, such as leukemia and AIDS.

Worm farmers wriggle into US market
A company that uses advanced technology to breed sandworms in England is opening a branch in the USA to help avert a bait shortage among America's anglers.

NIST developing virtual reality training tool for firefighters
NIST is developing a virtual reality simulation of fire situations that will enable fire professionals to demonstrate and test firefighting tactics on computers without risk to life and limb.

Natural hormone could reverse heart damage
By altering the signaling pathway of the natural hormone leptin, Johns Hopkins researchers say, doctors may one day be able to minimize or even reverse a dangerous enlarged heart condition linked to obesity.

Single photon detector conquers the dark side
Researchers from NIST and Boston University have demonstrated a detector that counts single pulses of light, while simultaneously reducing false or

Penn study: Herb product used to lower cholesterol works no better than placebo
A natural extract often favored by health-conscious Americans as an alternative to manufactured drugs in lowering cholesterol has turned out to be no more effective than a placebo in clinical trials at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine.

Drug may eliminate transfusions in patients with blood disorder
The use of hydroxyurea may eliminate the need for future blood transfusions in children with beta-thalassemia major, an inherited blood disorder, according to a study published in the August 15th issue of Blood.

Infants more vulnerable to serious brain injury from falling than previously thought
Babies are more vulnerable to serious head injury during a fall than had been previously thought, according to new research that may also begin to help child abuse investigators distinguish between accidental and intentional injury.

Vaccine development sparks debate on changes to cervical cancer screening guidelines
While vaccines for cervical cancer that appear to be clinically useful remain in clinical trials, an analysis by Duke University Medical Center researchers concludes that while such a vaccine could delay the need for an initial Pap test it would not eliminate the need for screening.

One-day conference on perchlorate at UC Riverside discussed risks, regulation and treatment
UC Riverside hosted on its campus a one-day scientific conference on August 7, 2003, to discuss perchlorate, including its risks, regulation and treatment.

UCLA researcher first to solve structure of membrane transport protein
UCLA physiologist H. Ronald Kaback recently solved the three-dimensional structure of lactose permease (LacY), which moves lactose across the cell membrane of E. coli.

Global warming not man-made phenomenon
Global warming will not be helped much by efforts to reduce carbon dioxide emission into the atmosphere, say two scientists who have studied the matter.

New NIST facility soon will be 'reflecting' on safer signs
A new facility built by NIST researchers will help improve measurements of how much light reflects off stop signs and other roadway markings.

Scientists celebrate a sea turtle's homecoming
When Miss Pearl finally returned to the Pearl Cays in Nicaragua last month after a three-year hiatus, it was cause for celebration.

Hypnosis doesn't improve pain relief strategies
Techniques like relaxation and visualizing a pleasant scene can take the sting out of mild pain, but adding hypnosis to the mix does not make such techniques more effective, according to a new report in Health Psychology.

Millions turn a blind eye to dangerous driving
As many as 2.5 million adults in the UK are putting themselves and others at risk by deliberately ignoring the fact that they have bad eyesight.

Study calls for major reforms in marketing of ephedra
In a study published in the August 2003 issue of Mayo Clinic Proceedings, researchers found that some Web sites that advertise dietary herbal supplements containing the popular weight-loss dietary supplement ephedra fail to disclose potential adverse effects and make misleading statements about the safety, use and efficacy of the supplements.

Endostatin also effective on head and neck cancers
Researchers at Ohio State found that endostatin has a dual effect on head and neck cancer cells - the compound prevented the cells from developing new blood vessels and also hindered the mechanism cancer cells use to migrate throughout the body and invade other tissues.
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