Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

September 18, 2003
SPR Annual Meeting features newsworthy discoveries
The annual meeting of the Society for Psychophysiological Research is widely regarded as a leading forum for presentations on cutting-edge research on the connections between the physiological and psychological aspects of behavior.

Male injecting-drug users at greater risk of drug-related death
A study of injecting-drug users in Scotland in this week's issue of THE LANCET highlights how men-and all injectors over 34 years of age-have the highest drug-related mortality risk.

Louis Leakey Centennial Tribute
Dozens of the world's leading anthropologists, geologists, biologists and evolutionary scientists - including Meave and Louise Leakey - will mark the 100th anniversary of Louis Leakey's birth at a two-day Centennial Tribute presented by The Leakey Foundation and held at The Field Museum Oct.

Have the police hijacked our DNA?
Creating a DNA database of all UK men to assist in criminal investigations may sound extreme; however this week's editorial proposes that there has been no more rational option to date in an attempt to use DNA profiling to assist in the identification of violent offenders in the UK, 80% of whom are men.

Differences in cancer screening rates reported
UCLA Center for Health Policy Research. The differences -- attributed to cultural, education, language and other barriers -- persist even when comparing like income levels or health insurance status across racial and ethnic groups.

Florida study shows surgical mishaps more likely in physician offices than surgery centers
Patients operated on in ambulatory surgery centers are safer than those who undergo procedures in doctors' offices, a new Florida study shows.

Long-term natural gas supplies should meet growing demand in coming decades, study finds
Sudden price spikes have led to speculation that the United States is facing a critical shortage of natural gas.

Guinea-zilla? World's largest rodent identified as ancient sibling to guinea pigs
Roughly the size of a buffalo, a giant rodent that roamed the banks of an ancient Venezuelan river some 8 million years ago, dining on sea grass and dodging crocodiles, was an evolutionary sibling to modern-day guinea pigs.

Built-in eyeshade offers clue to prehistoric past
A new, rare fossil of a prehistoric sea creature bearing eyes like

Stress makes MS symptoms worse
For patients with multiple sclerosis, stressful life events seem to make their symptoms worse, finds a study in this week's BMJ.

Pet scans could provide insight into HIV-1 progression
An article and a research letter in this week's issue of THE LANCET provide preliminary data suggesting that positron emission tomography (PET) scans could identify the effect of HIV-1 infection on the body's lymphatic system.

Hormones and drugs that control blood pressure also control malaria infection
Hormones that regulate cardiovascular function have been discovered to influence malaria infection.

Zebrafish studies provide insight into blood-cell formation
Howard Hughes Medical Institute researchers tracking down the cause of anemia in mutant zebrafish embryos have discovered a protein that guides the creation of new blood cells.

Virginia Tech, University of Texas to create wireless simulator
Future wireless devices will enable streaming video, voice over the Internet, and vast amounts of data transfer.

Hot topics in pharmacogenomics
The 2nd annual meeting of the International Society of Pharmacogenomics (ISP), a joint meeting with the Pacific Rim Association for Clinical Pharmacogenetics (PRACPG), will be held at the Biltmore Hotel in downtown Los Angeles for two days of rich presentation and knowledge-sharing.

Chronic fatigue syndrome is rare in children
There have been no proper estimates of the numbers of children with chronic fatigue syndrome or myalgic encephalomyelitis (CFS/ME) in the UK.

Adult stem cell research
The adult mammalian heart has long been viewed as an organ incapable of repairing itself.

Link between cannabis and death still not established
Although the use of cannabis is not harmless, its link with death is still not established, argues a senior researcher in this week's BMJ.

Americans' knowledge of genetically modified foods remains low and opinions on safety still split
Americans' knowledge of genetically modified (GM) foods remains low and their opinions about its safety are just as divided as they were two years ago, according to a new survey released today by the Pew Initiative on Food and Biotechnology.

UCR engineer awarded EPA grant to study air pollution
Dennis Fitz, a research engineer at UC Riverside, has been awarded a grant of $187,000 by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to study air pollution.

Saving dirt: Pristine soils losing out to agriculture and development
A new UC Berkeley study may cause some people to rethink the phrase,

Accelerated radiotherapy more effective for treating head and neck cancer
Danish research published in this week's issue of THE LANCET provides strong evidence that the shortening of radiotherapy treatment time has definitive benefits for people being treated for head and neck cancer.

Should living liver donation be available in the NHS?
Living liver donation should be available on the NHS, although it should not be adopted without full public debate and agreement because of the risks to donors, argue researchers in this week's BMJ.

Faster radiotherapy more effective in head and neck cancer, trial shows
The world's largest trial in accelerated radiotherapy for head and neck cancer - the DAHANCA trial - proves conclusively that increasing the number of treatments per week from five to six can benefit patients.

Genes discovered that regulate blood stem cell development
Researchers at Children's Hospital Boston have isolated a gene responsible for making blood stem cells.

Web-based program optimizes stroke care in rural areas
Stroke patients in rural communities can be assessed and treated essentially as well by a neurologist via a wireless Internet program as they can in person, according to a new study.

Different approaches required for monitoring suicide trends
UK authors of a research letter in this week's issue of THE LANCET suggest that conventional methods for assessing trends in suicide rates-which show an overall reduction in suicide in England and Wales over the past two decades-have masked an important increase in suicide rates among younger men.

NSF awards $12.5 million to Cal-(IT)²
The National Science Foundation today announced it will award $9 million to UC Irvine and $3.5 million to UC San Diego to address how information technology can revolutionize response to crises, including natural disasters.

Carnegie Mellon to host first U.S.-based int'l conference on electronic commerce
Carnegie Mellon University will host the Fifth International Conference on Electronic Commerce (ICEC2003) at the Hilton Hotel in Pittsburgh.
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