Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

January 05, 2004
Faintest spectra ever raise glaring question
Until now, astronomers have been nearly blind when looking back in time to survey an era when most stars in the Universe were expected to have formed.

Depression, other psychiatric illnesses common following traumatic brain injury
Many patients who experience a traumatic injury to the brain experience major depression or other psychiatric illnesses within a year after their head injuries, according to two articles in the January issue of The Archives of General Psychiatry, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

Parasite's enzyme structure helps address a public health issue
By revealing the architecture of an essential enzyme in a parasite, Dartmouth researchers are helping address a public health issue.

Dance of the molecules
Until now, scientists studying the workings of ultra-microscopic forms have had to rely on the scientific equivalents of still photos, something like trying to fathom driving by looking at a photograph of a car.

United States has highest prevalence of overweight teens in 15 country study
In a study of adolescents across 15 countries, adolescents in the United States had the highest prevalence of overweight, according to an article in the January issue of The Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

Placebo-controlled clinical trials put children with asthma at risk
Enrolling children with asthma in the placebo arm of a clinical trial is common, harmful and ethically unjustified argue researchers from the University of Chicago and the National Institutes of Health in the January 2004 issue of Pediatrics.

Methamphetamine withdrawal associated with brain changes seen in mood disorders
Results of a new study indicate that people who have recently stopped abusing the powerfully addictive drug methamphetamine may have brain abnormalities similar to those seen in people with mood disorders.

Study on toxic exposures in urban environments
Columbia and Harvard University Researchers find that steel dust generated by New York City's subway system affects the amount of iron, manganese and chromium that commuters breathe.

A novel way to boost childhood immunizations: Use baby pictures on personalized calendars
In the face of mounting concern over low childhood immunization rates, a Saint Louis University researcher has found a way to help urban families keep their toddlers immunized.

Enzyme fully degrades mad cow disease prion
Research by North Carolina State University scientists, in conjunction with scientists from the Netherlands and BioResource International, an NC State spin-off biotechnology company, has shown that, under proper conditions, an enzyme can fully degrade the prion - or protein particle - believed to be responsible for mad cow disease and other related animal and human diseases.

New study suggests El Niño-related fires may be significant source of greenhouse gases
In 1997-98, while California was ravaged by rainfall in one of the strongest El Niños of the last century, several other regions of the Earth suffered severe droughts, which led to large-scale fires.

Endurance of plants under quartz rocks possible model for life on early Earth, Mars
Microscopic Mojave Desert plants growing on the underside of translucent quartz pebbles can endure both chilly and near-boiling temperatures, scavenge nitrogen from the air, and utilize the equivalent of nighttime moonlight levels for photosynthesis, a new study reports.

El Nino-related fires increase greenhouse gas emissions
Year-to-year changes in concentration of carbon dioxide and methane, two important greenhouse gases in the atmosphere, can be linked to fire activity associated with the El Nino-La Nina cycle, according to a study conducted by a team of NASA scientists and other researchers.

Malpractice reform must focus on reducing patient injury, not just limiting awards
Reducing medical injury is essential to solving the current medical malpractice crisis, and physicians must play an active role in developing and implementing systems to improve patient safety--rather than just focusing on capping malpractice awards, say Stephen C.

Study looks at students' drinking misperceptions, behavior
College students' drinking behaviors are influenced more by their perceptions of their friends' drinking behaviors than by social norms marketing campaigns that encourage students to

Story tips from the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory, January 2004
Story tips from the Oak Ridge National Laboratory for January 2004 relate to energy efficient homes, weight in motion technology, quick decontamination and attacking bioterrorism.

Metastasis of colon cancer cells reversed in vitro
Weizmann Institute scientists have succeeded in reversing the metastatic properties of colon cancer cells, in vitro.

Ozone standards pose health risk, scientists report
The air Americans breathe contains more ozone from pollution than the Environmental Protection Agency estimates, scientists report.

Nasal spray flu vaccine may help prevent influenza in healthy children
An influenza virus vaccine delivered as a nasal spray, appears to be effective in protecting healthy children against certain strains of influenza, according to an article in the January issue of The Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

New light-emitting transistor could revolutionize electronics industry
Professors Nick Holonyak Jr. and Milton Feng at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have uncovered a light-emitting transistor that could make the transistor the fundamental element in optoelectronics as well as in electronics.

CHF announces 2004-2005 academic fellowships
CHF offers six academic-year fellowships (September-May) to support scholars in residence.

Outpatient medical settings differ in educational experiences
Do academic medical centers and community-based settings offer comparable outpatient learning experiences for medical students?

Old equation may shed new light on planet formation
New work with an old equation may help scientists calculate the thickness of ice covering the oceans on Jupiter's moon Europa and ultimately provide insight into planet formation.

Petrochemical Heritage Award to William A. McMinn, Jr.
The Chemical Heritage Foundation (CHF) and the Founders Club today announced that William A.

Vegetables that prevent may ultimately cure some cancers
Broccoli, cabbage, turnips and mustard greens. A dose a day keeps most cancers away.

Astronomers: Star may be biggest, brightest yet observed
A University of Florida-led team of astronomers may have discovered the brightest star yet observed in the universe, a fiery behemoth that could be as much as much as seven times brighter than the current record holder.

Pittcon Heritage Award to Paul A. Wilks, Jr.
The Chemical Heritage Foundation (CHF) announced that Paul A. Wilks, Jr., will receive the third annual Pittcon Heritage Award.

Chemical Heritage Press releases new book by Peter H. Spitz
The Chemical Industry at the Millennium is a must read for industry professionals and anyone else interested in the changes and challenges facing a great and essential industry.

MTBE alternatives could pose similar environmental threat
Designing underground fuel tanks that don't leak rather than replacing MTBE with alternative fuel additives could be a better way to prevent groundwater contamination, according to new research that will appear in the Jan.

Old galaxies in a young universe: Finding stumps astronomers
Scientists conducting the multinational Gemini Deep Deep Survey (GDDS) expected to see small, young galaxies colliding and growing in the adolescent universe when it was about 20% to 40% of its present age.

Patients recovering from depression with talk therapy show a 'distinct' pattern of brain changes
An imaging study by neuroscientists in Canada has found that patients who recover from depression with Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) show a pattern of brain changes that is distinct from patients who recover with drug therapy.

Effect of diabetes case management among low-income minority populations
Diabetes case management substantially improves glycemic control among low-income ethnic minority populations.

MUHC researchers develop new way to test for sleep apnea in children
Approximately one to three percent of children are affected by obstructive sleep apnea (OSA).

Study reveals teachers' attitudes about having chronically ill children in the classroom
Teachers have an overall positive attitude about having children with chronic illnesses in their classrooms, according to an article in the January issue of The Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

Annals of Internal Medicine, tip sheet, January 6, 2004
Highlights include studies suggesting that caffeinated coffee consumption linked to lower risk for type 2 diabetes and kidney disease may be associated with new metabolic risk factors for heart disease.
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