Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

September 24, 2003
US air transportation system 'in peril' - report
A report released yesterday by the National Research Council found that the nation's air transportation system is

Researchers urge caution over using ginseng in early pregnancy
Researchers from Hong Kong have warned that women should be cautious about using the herbal remedy ginseng in the early stages of pregnancy according to a report in the latest issue of Human Reproduction.

Did a gamma-ray burst devastate life on Earth?
A burst of gamma-rays may have caused one of Earth's most devastating mass extinctions, 443 million years ago.

Docetaxel versus paclitaxel in breast cancer - Results of world's first head to head trial
Eagerly awaited results from the world's first head to head trial between the anti-cancer drugs docetaxel (Taxotere) and paclitaxel (Taxol)1 have shown that there was a better overall response rate and longer overall survival among breast cancer patients given docetaxel - although docetaxel was associated with more severe side effect a US oncologist told the European Cancer Conference.

Sex selection for social reasons: religious and moral perspectives
Two reports in the 25 September 2003 issue of Human Reproduction suggest that the coming availability of sex selection technology is not likely to skew the balance between the sexes.

Special report on hurricanes
Last week, Isabel became the latest hurricane to strike the US, fueling predictions that hurricanes are on the increase.

Retinoblastoma survivors face increased risk of a second cancer
Children with an inherited risk of developing retinoblastoma, and who have been treated for the disease, are more likely to develop another cancer later in life than retinoblasoma survivors without such a hereditary risk.

Workers embrace IT that fosters coordination; reject IT that controls
Managers about to add new computer-based systems should be aware: a technology that fosters access and coordination will be embraced by workers while one that controls behavior to increase productivity will be rejected, say two Penn State researchers who studied how workers adopted IT tools such as software, cell phones and other Internet applications.

Sex selection for social reasons unlikely to skew gender balance in Germany and UK
Allowing sex selection for social reasons would be highly unlikely to skew the gender balance - at least in Germany and the UK - according to new research published in the latest issue of Europe's leading reproductive medicine journal Human Reproduction.

Field Museum gives prestigious Parker Gentry Award to Tanzanian anti-poaching activist
The Field Museum gives its eighth annual Parker/Gentry Award to Lorivi Ole Moirana, Chief Warden of Tanzania's National Park System, for his courageous and tireless efforts on behalf of Tanzania's parks.

Oct. GSA Bulletin media highlights
The October issue of the GEOLOGICAL SOCIETY OF AMERICA BULLETIN includes a number of potentially newsworthy items.

Study links IQ and affluence level to longevity
By following nearly 1,000 subjects during a 70-year span, Scottish researchers have found that people with high IQs who reside in poor neighborhoods lived longer than people in similar areas with low IQs, while the intelligence score was not important for longevity for people living in wealthy neighborhoods.

Genes can individualize treatment for high blood pressure
Genes that cause hypertension may also determine which blood pressure-lowering drugs are most effective for different people.

Dispute over toxic shock syndrome
Based on results of a study, the maker of Tampax told a meeting last week that they are trying to develop a test for genetic susceptibility to toxic shock syndrome.

Radical innovation helps dominant pharmaceutical firms most
A new study shows that dominant pharmaceutical firms introduce many more radical innovations than nondominant firms and that Wall Street values their innovations much more.

Supported housing for the homeless is more efffective, but also more costly
The combination of subsidized housing and intensive case management for homeless people with mental illness keeps many more people off the street, but at an additional cost of $45 per day housed, or approximately $2,000 a year, according to a Yale study.

Duke to lead first comparative trial of hepatitis C therapies
Researchers from Duke University Medical Center and The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine will lead the first ever direct comparison of the two leading treatments for hepatitis C infection, a study they hope will help refine treatment practices to maximize benefit for patients.

Rice wins $5m to probe social evolution using latest genetic tools
Rice University won a $5 million federal grant to use the latest techniques of modern molecular genetics and large-scale genomics to study the causes, mechanisms and effects of social evolution.

Oct. Geology & GSA Today media highlights
Topics include: new arguments against impact events as cause of volcanic eruptions on Earth and Venus; insights into growth and activity of Hawaiian volcanoes; analysis of active lava flows from NASA's Earth Observing-1 satellite; and impacts of the late Paleozoic ice age on the global marine ecosystem.

Study demonstrates improved survival in women with metastatic breast cancer
Today at the European Cancer Conference (ECCO) annual meeting, results from a randomized, Phase III study were presented which demonstrated that women with metastatic breast cancer who were treated with TaxotereÃ’ (docetaxel) Injection Concentrate had a statistically significant improvement in overall survival and time to disease progression compared to those who were treated with paclitaxel.

Antigen targeted in therapy for melanoma also prompts immune response in brain tumor cells
Scientists seeking better ways to enlist the immune system in the battle against malignant brain tumors have a new target - an antigen that was previously detected in melanomas.

Mediterranean hot flush detected after scorching summer
Our record-breaking long hot summer heated Europe's seas as well as the land.

Baby satellites
ESA's second microsatellite, Proba-2, is under development for a launch early in 2006.

Proteomics, genomics topics for November ACS ProSpectives' conference
The American Chemical Society, the world's largest scientific society, will hold this year's last ACS ProSpectives conference on Nov.

Nanoneurosurgery, search for E-T life, bioscan technology and home holograms at frontiers of optics
The Optical Society of America's (OSA) Frontiers in Optics 2003, a conference providing up-to-the-minute advancements in optics and photonics research, features a breadth of significant topics from medicine to astronomy and computing.

Could diabetes treatments fight cancer?
Drugs that treat diabetes may also be effective against some cancers.

NREL research team wins R&D 100 award
The National Renewable Energy Laboratory and First Solar have been selected to receive a 2003 R&D 100 award from R&D Magazine for developing a new process for depositing semiconductor layers onto photovoltaic (PV) modules.

Scientists identify molecular mechanism underlying tumor selectivity of Hsp90 inhibitors
A newly identified biochemical difference between malignant and normal cells points to a novel target for developing selective anti-cancer drugs.

First study to show link between children's solid tumours and their mothers' breast cancer
A study of the mothers of a group of 2694 children who had been diagnosed with a solid tumour when they were younger than 15 showed a third higher cases of breast cancer than would have been expected.

Brain transportation system defect linked to Huntington's by UCSD team
UCSD School of Medcine researchers have linked a defective protein in Huntington's disease to gridlock in the transportation system that moves signals and vital protein cargoes within the brain, eventually leading to neuron cell death.

New evidence eases some concerns about bone fracture risk with breast cancer drug
New evidence about the breast cancer drug anastrozole (Arimidex) shows that the incidence of a major side-effect - bone fractures - appears to stabilise after reaching a peak at two years of treatment, easing some of the concerns about the drug the European Cancer Conference heard.

Health of independent clinical trials in danger, scientist warns
EU legislation due to take effect next year could have a disastrous effect academic clinical trials across Europe.

ORNL to showcase new solar technology Oct. 7-8
Representatives from major retailers, the lighting industry and the Tennessee Valley Authority are scheduled to participate in a hybrid solar lighting summit hosted by Oak Ridge National Laboratory Oct.

UCAR wins funding for new weather forecasting tools to aid scientists and the public
The University Corporation for Atmospheric Research (UCAR) and seven other institutions have won a prestigious National Science Foundation (NSF) grant to create a series of powerful tools for weather forecasters and the public.

Call for entries: The AAAAI presents the 4th Annual Samter Journalism Award
The American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology (AAAAI) is pleased to announce the 4th Annual Samter Journalism Award Program.

PA inventory shows fossil fuels remain largest source of carbon dioxide
Carbon dioxide emissions from fossil fuels are the most significant greenhouse gas emissions in Pennsylvania according to the Greenhouse Gas Emissions Inventory for Pennsylvania prepared by Penn State researchers.

Study shows increased risk of cancer for stressed women
Stress can increase a woman's chances of getting breast cancer, but how much stress is needed to increase the risk is unknown.

ESA's SMART-1 satellite ready for lift-off
Follow the SMART-1 launch from an ESA or Arianespace establishment.

More children survive cancer but the after-effects present a challenge to doctors
The number of children who survive childhood cancer is improving dramatically, but because of the side effects of their treatment the majority continue to need specialist care for many years.

Experts present new research on the hot topics of aging at GSA's Annual Meeting
A sampling of what to expect at the 55th Annual Scientific Meeting of The Gerontological Society of America, the national organization of professionals in the field of aging.

NSF'S 'FIBR' to mix disciplines, use breakthroughs on 5-year explorations into biology's mysteries
How do species arise? Do they even matter among microbes?

Resistance exercise resets the body clock
Resistance exercise may directly reset the body clocks in skeletal muscle, according to research published in Genome Biology this week.
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