Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

November 06, 2003
Sex a necessary evolutionary commodity, new study shows
Writing in the current issue (Nov. 7) of the journal Science, a team of scientists from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and the University of Alberta, reports that sexual reproduction in the worm C. elegans enhances the developmental flexibility of progeny, allowing them to change their sex and genetic makeup after birth to confer a critical advantage for survival when times are hard.

New TB vaccine shows promise in HIV infection
An innovative vaccine against tuberculosis has shown promise in persons with HIV, researchers from Dartmouth Medical School and the National Public Health Institute of Finland report in the Nov.

Nitrates abundant in arid southwest
Deserts soils in the Southwest U.S. may be nutrient poor, but the subsoils below are rich in nitrate according to new research appearing in the Nov.

Teaching your cell phone where it is and how to act
NIST scientists and engineers have teamed up with a variety of computing and telecommunications companies to develop both the test methods and the standard protocols needed for programmable wireless devices.

'Survivor' mass-extinction style: Geologist reveals bust and boom cycles
Mass extinctions may have a silver lining, reports University of Cincinnati geologist Arnold Miller in the Nov.

Training GPs to manage obesity does not affect weight loss
The usefulness of providing training in obesity management to general practice teams is questioned by researchers in this week's BMJ.

NIST chemist receives rare forensics award
John Butler, a NIST research chemist, has been awarded the Scientific Prize of the International Society for Forensic Genetics (ISFG) for outstanding work on standardization and pioneering work on new DNA analysis technologies for forensic applications.

University of Pittsburgh receives grant for research on cancer and aging
The University of Pittsburgh has received a grant from the National Cancer Institute to improve health outcomes in older people with cancer.

The affordable cosmic vision
Today, at its 105th meeting, ESA's Science Programme Committee (SPC) has made important decisions concerning the Cosmic Vision programme.

How interest and social relations impact the economy
To provide a general introduction to the ways social relations, culture, politics, law and gender influence economic decisions, Richard Swedberg, Cornell University professor of sociology, has just published an introductory text,

Cellular problem discovered behind syndrome of obesity, learning disabilities
A research team led by Johns Hopkins scientists has discovered a potential new contributor to obesity -- faulty cilia.

UCI Cancer Center selected by National Cancer Institute to test cancer prevention drugs
The Chao Family Comprehensive Cancer Center at UC Irvine has been chosen by the National Cancer Institute (NCI) to test the effectiveness of promising new cancer prevention drugs.

Highlights of the November 2003 Journal of the American Dietetic Association
The November 2003 issue of the Journal of the American Dietetic Association contains articles and research studies you may find of interest.

See a total eclipse of the Moon
On Saturday night, 8 November 2003, the full Moon will pass through the Earth's shadow, producing a total lunar eclipse for skywatchers throughout North America, Europe and Africa.

November science picks!
This monthly collection of science story ideas can help you cover ongoing earth and natural science research and investigations at the U.S.

Ice cores may yield clues to 5,000-year-old mystery
The latest expeditions to ice caps in the high, tropical Peruvian Andes Mountains by Ohio State University scientists may shed light on a mysterious global climate change they believe occurred more than 5,000 years ago.

1 in 3 injections given in developing countries is unsafe
Overuse of injections and unsafe practices are still common in developing and transitional countries, find researchers in this week's BMJ.

AIDS epidemic should be treated as a disaster
In September, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared the HIV/AIDS epidemic a global health emergency requiring a rapid scaled-up treatment response, but researchers in this week's BMJ argue that governments should go one step further and treat it as a disaster.

UT Southwestern scientist receives international award for lipid research
Dr. David J. Mangelsdorf, professor of pharmacology and biochemistry at UT Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas and an associate investigator in the university's Howard Hughes Medical Institute, has been awarded Germany's highly respected Heinrich Wieland Prize for his research on lipids.

Mixed verdict on Iraq 'embedded' reporters
Research published today (Thursday November 6th) by Cardiff University, Wales, UK, has delivered a mixed verdict on the use of ¡¥embedded¡¦ reporters in the Iraq war.

Open-access publishing: The debate continues
The arguments surrounding open-access publishing are detailed in this week's issue of THE LANCET.

Scripps scientists link ozone to atherosclerosis
A team of investigators led by The Scripps Research Institute (TSRI) President Richard A.

Addressing medical students as 'student doctors' may help quell patient fears
Simple semantics may help quell patient's fears about taking part in medical education, according to a letter to this week's BMJ.

UK trial results on value of cannabis for multiple sclerosis patients
Researchers funded by the UK Medical Research Council have found mixed evidence about the value of cannabis-derived treatments for people with Multiple Sclerosis but conclude that such treatments may be of benefit for some patients.

Volcanic mysteries unraveled underwater
Almost all of the active volcanoes on Earth lie beneath miles of seawater at mid-ocean ridges, creating the long chain of volcanic mountains that encircles the Earth like the seam of a baseball.

COPD's changing face
In the last 30 years, while mortality from cardiovascular disease and cancer was falling, death rates from chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) rose 163 percent.

Draft federal guidelines issued for computer security
NIST computer scientists released on Nov. 3 an initial public draft of Recommended Security Controls for Federal Information Systems (NIST SP 800-53).

Volcanic Ash Detector to safeguard air travel
Air safety will be boosted and the world aviation industry is set to save millions of dollars with the development by Australian company Tenix and CSIRO of an airborne volcanic gas and ash detector.

Sleep apnea, depression linked in Stanford study
People with depression are five times more likely to have a breathing-related sleep disorder than non-depressed people, according to a study at the Stanford University School of Medicine.

Nanowire film brings cheaper, faster electronics a step closer
Researchers at Harvard University have demonstrated for the first time that they can easily apply a film of tiny, high-performance silicon nanowires to glass and plastic, a development that could pave the way for the next generation of cheaper, lighter and more powerful consumer electronics.

Are you ready for Mars?
ESA's Mars Express probe is scheduled to arrive at Mars at Christmas: the Beagle 2 lander is expected to touch down on the surface of the Red Planet on the night of 24 to 25 December.

Mixed results for study investigating potential of cannabis treatment for MS
Results of the first large-scale randomised trial to assess the potential benefit of cannabis in the treatment of multiple sclerosis are detailed in this week's issue of THE LANCET.

Scientists work to break cellular code
Despite the rich knowledge scientists now have of the genes that constitute the human genome, researchers have yet to unravel the precise choreography by which they work - or malfunction - together in the cell in response to triggers from the outside world.

Conference to highlight medical advances resulting from 50 years of DNA knowledge
In celebration of the 50th anniversary of the description of DNA structure by James Watson and Francis Crick, the Gene Therapy Program at the UCSD School of Medicine and the journal, Science, will bring together many of the world renowned scientists who ave spearheaded the era of molecular medicine.

Duke leaders propose overhaul of health care and the practice of medicine
The U.S. health-care system is inefficient, wasteful, expensive, frequently inaccessible and in need of repair.

New superconductor study confirms, extends Nobel theory
In newly reported research, NIST and Brown University scientists have determined that so-called type II superconductors have the equivalent of a multiple personality--at least three distinct physical states, each with its own superconducting behavior.

Plants' circadian clocks tune into latitude to enhance fitness
Dartmouth researchers have learned that natural variations in a plant's circadian clock correlate with the plant's latitude.

Lehigh-Unilever study sheds light on mystery of cloudy wineglasses
Scientists find that invisible micro-scratches form as wineglasses are manufactured.

Can viruses that infect bacteria fight plant disease?
While the medical community has been exploring the use of bacteriophages, a form of virus that can be used to manage bacteria that have become resistant to antibiotics, plant pathologists with the American Phytopathological Society (APS) now say that this same approach may also help fight plant disease.

Study suggests radiography unnecessary to identify TB in HIV pts in some settings
Authors of a research letter in this week's issue of THE LANCET provide evidence that counters UNAIDS/WHO guidelines with respect to preventive tuberculosis treatment for people with HIV-1 infection.

Astronomers break ground on Atacama Large Millimeter Array (ALMA)
Scientists and dignitaries from Europe, North America and Chile are breaking ground today (Thursday, November 6, 2003) on what will be the world's largest, most sensitive radio telescope operating at millimetre wavelengths.

DuPont awarded highest US honor for technological innovation
DuPont today was awarded the National Medal of Technology - the highest honor for technological innovation in the United States -- by U.S.

Marie Curie Nobel Centennial Celebration of Women in Science
Yale University is hosting a three-day conference, November 6, 7 and 8, highlighting the impact of women scientists historically and addressing the scientific challenges for the 21st Century.

Next ISS flight named DELTA
The Dutch Ministers of Economical Affairs and of Education, Culture and Science have announced the mission name of the next Soyuz flight to the International Space Station, which has Dutch ESA astronaut André Kuipers serving as flight engineer.

Sex in the soil
Even in the animal world, mating is so desirable that the nematode worm will change its sex to increase the chances of partners--a groundbreaking discovery of nurture changing nature, says a University of Alberta scientist, part of a team which conducted the research. is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to