Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

August 13, 2003
Atmospheric bromine, which attacks ozone layer, is decreasing
Researchers have discovered that total bromine in the lower atmosphere has been decreasing since 1998 and is now more than five percent below the peak reached that year.

Weedkiller may encourage blight
Toxic fungi grows faster when glyphosate-based weedkillers are used on wheat fields, say Canadian researchers.

Carnegie Mellon develops new process for growing bone
Carnegie Mellon researchers have developed a new therapy for regenerating bone.

Pioneering study compares 13 vertebrate genomes
In one of the most novel and extensive comparisons of vertebrate genomic sequences performed to date, a team led by the National Human Genome Research Institute (NHGRI) today reported results that demonstrate how such comparisons can reveal functionally important parts of the human genome beyond the genes themselves.

Scripps team part of collaboration that reveals first ecological genomic 'blueprints'
A broad international collaboration of scientists has uncovered the first genetic blueprints of organisms critically important in the world's ecological makeup.

And here's the local crime forecast...
A computer model that can forecast crime rates could be a powerful tool to help identify areas which need increased police resources.

UCI biomedical engineer receives $1.8 million grant
UC Irvine biomedical engineer Steven C. George, who is one of the first U.S. scientists to create three-dimensional living lung tissue, has received a $1.8 million grant from the National Institutes of Health to examine how asthma attacks the walls of the bronchial tubes.

Using the Internet may harm, not help, people find a job
Contrary to popular belief, using 'the Internet may not improve a person's chances of finding a job.

Researchers enter age of comparative genetics with large-scale study of vertebrate DNA
An Arizona State University researcher is part of a group of scientists reporting the first large-scale comparison of the human genome to 12 other vertebrates.

Glaciers strive for steady-state in bed erosion
Glaciers erode the mountain landscape, creating piles of boulders, rocks and gravel, and leaving scooped out tarns and cirques, but until recently, geologists were unsure how to model this erosion because the feedback mechanisms controlling it were unknown.

Boost your brain power
Research undertaken by scientists in Australia has shown that taking creatine, a compound found in muscle tissue, as a dietary supplement can give a significant boost to both working memory and general intelligence.

Introduced marine species get larger in the invaded region
The transport of species outside their native region through human activities often has a dramatic impact on the ecosystems into which these species are introduced and on the surrounding economies.

Gamma-ray weapons
A third class of weapon that blurs the distinction between nuclear and conventional weapons could give army commanders an advantage of increased force, which could lead to the possibility of the next arms race.

Lake ecosystem critical to East African food supply is threatened by climate change
In an important new study directly linking climatic warming with the survival of lake organisms, researchers have found multiple lines of evidence showing that increasing air and water temperatures and related factors are shrinking fish and algae populations in a major lake.

Distinctive advantages give optical sensors the edge over conventional systems
Fiber-optic sensors offer a wide spectrum of advantages over traditional sensing systems, such as small size and longer lifetime.

Childhood leukemia survivors not receiving radiation have same life expectancy as general population
A new study from St. Jude Children's Research Hospital indicates that survivors of childhood acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) who have not received radiation treatment as part of their therapy have virtually the same long-term life experiences as the general population.

Scientists rewrite laws of glacial erosion
Glaciers aren't so different from people - they can gain weight in their bottoms and be less active.

ID Migraine screener found to be highly reliable in detecting migraine in undiagnosed patients
A simple three-question test, called ID Migraine, can identify patients with migraine with about the same accuracy as widely used screening tests for other illnesses.

Rutgers scientists pinpoint brain cells involved in drug addiction relapse
Relapse among recovering drug addicts can now be linked to specific nerve cells in a particular region of the brain, according to a team of researchers at Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey.

Predators: an overlooked player in plant-pollinator relationships
Biologists have recognized that predators help to shape ecological communities.

Emory biostatisticians demonstrate method to bolster accuracy of vaccine studies
Scientists from the Rollins School of Public Health at Emory University have been exploring ways to measure vaccine effectiveness accurately, despite two persistent problems that threaten to confound statistical analysis: bias in reporting illness and non-specific definitions of disease.

Monitoring malaria: Genomic activity of the parasite in human blood cells
The deadliest form of malaria is caused by Plasmodium falciparum, a parasite harbored in mosquito saliva from where it is transmitted to the human host.

ACPM recommends research priorities for child and adolescent immunizations
The American College of Preventive Medicine (ACPM) recommended today research priorities that aim to encourage the development of new vaccines and increase immunization rates.

Parasites mediate plant invasions
A new study in Ecology Letters, August, Anurag Agrawal tests the hypothesis that parasites are less effective in attacking non-native plants compared to native plants.

Holiday weather on Mars
ESA's Mars Express is due to arrive at Mars in December 2003, and its Beagle 2 lander will be making a touchdown in the middle of the Martian winter.

Genomes of tiny microbes yield clues to global climate change
By analyzing the genomes of several microscopic ocean-dwelling organisms sequenced at the U.S.

Microbes' 'blueprints' promise insights into oceans, more
The world's smallest photosynthetic organisms, microbes that can turn sunlight and carbon dioxide into living biomass like plants do, will be in the limelight next week.

Brain patterns the same whether doing or just watching, Queen's researcher discovers
New findings from a Queen's behavioural expert in eye/hand movement provide the first direct evidence that our brain patterns are similar whether we are actually doing something or simply watching someone else do it.

Study shows babies determine shapes, objects at early age
They might not normally merit a second glance, but those everyday objects around the house are constantly undergoing intense scrutiny, categorization and classification by babies trying to make sense of a world only months new to them.

UCF brain cell research spawns hope for longer life
A molecular biologist and a nanoscientist at the University of Central Florida have found that nanomaterials developed for industry have an unexpected and potentially revolutionary side effect: They can triple or quadruple the life of brain cells.
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