Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

October 20, 2003
ESA's Integral discovers hidden black holes
Integral, ESA's powerful gamma-ray space telescope, has discovered what seems to be a new class of astronomical objects.

Genetic differences in termite castes may lead to better control
Learning the molecular processes that cause termite larvae to grow into workers, soldiers or reproductive adults may lead to new methods to decimate colonies of the wood-eaters, according to Purdue University researchers.

Should the standard guidelines for assessing prostate cancer control be changed?
In the treatment of cancer, physicians use established guidelines to assess the effectiveness of the chosen anti-cancer therapy.

U of Minnesota receives NSF grant to sequence bacterial genome
The University of Minnesota has received a National Science Foundation grant of $699,245 for sequencing the genome of a soil bacterium that breaks down atrazine and other herbicides.

Imperial researchers show novel flu treatment eliminates symptoms in mice
Imperial College London researchers report today in the Journal of Experimental Medicine that they have developed a novel strategy for effectively treating the symptoms of the most deadly type of flu.

Who moved my cheese!?
By measuring the speed of smell, researchers have found that unlike humans, rats can tell two very similar odors apart with just one sniff.

Day 1 - Nuna in the lead
On the first race day of the World Solar Challenge race Nuna II, the solar car equipped with the most recent space technology, has taken the lead after only three hours.

The human dimension of disasters
The American Sociological Association (ASA)--in collaboration with George Washington University's Institute for Crisis, Disaster and Risk Management (ICDRM), and the Natural Hazards [Senate] Caucus Work Group--is sponsoring a briefing to elucidate the scientific knowledge base that could positively impact legislative- and policy-related efforts to prepare the nation to deal effectively with disasters.

Gene silencer may improve chemo and radiation
Like bacteria that resist common antibiotics, cancer cells can survive chemotherapy and radiation.

Drug may treat previously incurable brain cancer, say Stanford researchers
An old drug may have found a new role treating an incurable form of brain cancer called glioblastoma, according to preliminary research at Stanford University School of Medicine.

Media Advisory-GSA 2003 Annual Meeting
The 115th Annual Meeting of the Geological Society of America takes place November 2-5, 2003, at the Washington State Convention and Trade Center in Seattle.

Carnegie Mellon receives $2.5M to develop bio-molecular imaging and information discovery systems
Carnegie Mellon University scientist Robert Murphy has received $2.5 million from the National Science Foundation (NSF) as part of a five-year, $9.4 million multi-institutional grant headquartered at the University of California, Santa Barbara.

Leisure activity may reduce risk of Alzheimer's, says USC research team
Participation in a greater overall number of leisure activities during early and middle adulthood is related to lower risk of developing Alzheimer's disease, according a team of researchers headed by University of Southern California graduate student Michael Crowe.

New research links lung cancer screening to accelerated rates of smoking cessation
People screened for lung cancer by a spiral CT scanner have accelerated and prolonged quit rates of smoking regardless of whether the screening showed any type of malignancy.

Guidelines assessing outcome following radiation treatment and hormones overestimate progression
A new study from Fox Chase Cancer Center, Philadelphia, Pa., demonstrates that the current guidelines for assessing treatment outcome following radiation therapy overestimates progression when hormone therapy is added.

Breast cancer patients treated with lumpectomy and radiation survive longer if they don't smoke
A new study by physicians at Fox Chase Cancer Center in Philadelphia finds that women treated with breast-conservation surgery and radiation for their breast cancer live longer if they stop smoking.

Preliminary study finds stem cells in blood restore damaged heart muscle
Based on promising animal data, researchers at the University of Texas M.

Mix of factors related to exercise among minority women
Women from diverse racial and ethnic backgrounds say that having more convenient and inexpensive places to exercise would encourage them to become more active, a nationwide collection of studies in the September issue of the American Journal of Preventive Medicine concludes.

$5 million NSF grant to fund cybersecurity research
Developing ways to test defenses against attacks on computer networks by hackers, worms and viruses is the aim of a new project by researchers at UC Davis, Pennsylvania State University, Purdue University and the International Computer Science Institute in Berkeley, Calif., supported by a grant of $5.3 million from the National Science Foundation.

Gay, lesbian couples can teach heterosexuals how to improve relationships
Married heterosexual couples can learn a great deal from gay and lesbian couples, far more than the stereotypical images prsented by the television show

Annals of Internal Medicine, tip sheet, October 21, 2003
Highlights include studies indicating that patients may not fare best with docs or hospitals that most frequently perform the surgery and that topical treatment appears successful for bedsores.

Cincinnati scholar finds demon-chasing charms
Old books yield

Self-assembled nanocells function as non-volatile memory
Chemists under the direction of Rice University's Jim Tour have demonstrated that disordered assemblies of gold nanowires and conductive organic molecules can function as non-volatile memory.

Increasing MRSA in California jails
According to a study published in the November 15 issue of Clinical Infectious Diseases, not only are the rates of MRSA increasing, but newer, drug-resistant strains are appearing at an increasingly fast pace outside the hospital environment.

Better model of cancer development sheds light on potential angiogenesis target
Johns Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Center researchers have learned that a common, cancer-linked gene thought to control blood vessel growth may not turn out to be useful as an effective target for cancer drug development.

Report 13 in RERF study of mortality of A-bomb survivors extends coverage through 1997
The latest in an ongoing series of reports from the Radiation Effects Research Foundation (RERF) on the mortality of A-bomb survivors in Hiroshima and Nagasaki extends the study of solid cancer and noncancer disease mortality by 7 years to include the years 1950-1997.

Shire receives approvable letter for adult ADDERALL XR(R) from FDA
The US Food and Drug Administration issued an approvable letter for ADDERALL XR® once-daily treatment for adults with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) to Shire Pharmaceuticals Group plc (LSE: SHP, NASDAQ: SHPGY, TSX: SHQ).

Cognitive impairment worse than expected in seniors, says University of Pittsburgh study
The rate of mild cognitive impairment (MCI) in persons aged 75 and older is higher than expected, affecting 22 percent of those in the age group, according to two articles published in Archives of Neurology, one of the JAMA/Archives journals, and authored by Oscar Lopez, M.D., associate professor of neurology at the University of Pittsburgh.

University of Minnesota receives NSF grant to sequence legume genome
The University of Minnesota has received $10.8 million from the National Science Foundation (NSF) for a multi-institution initiative to sequence the genome of a model legume known by its scientific name, Medicago truncatula (the barrel medic).

Fighting the side effects of radiation
If facing their cancer weren't enough, brain tumor patients undergoing radiation also risk life-threatening infections such as pneumonia as their immune systems are suppressed by the corticosteroids used to ward off brain swelling and treatment-related headaches.

What you should know about statistics
Poor understanding of statistics causes many to view numbers cynically.

Book shows patterns within the bell curve
Complex, ordered patterns hidden within the ubiquitous bell-shaped curve are revealed in a new book,

Dose of radiation therapy directed to the prostate affects treatment outcome
The dose of radiation therapy delivered to the prostate for cancer treatment has a significant impact on clinical outcome.
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