Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

January 08, 2004
RNA lariat may tie up loose ends to decades-old mystery of retrovirus life cycle
Studies on common baker's yeast have led to the discovery of what may be a long-sought mechanism in the life cycle of retroviruses, including the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV).

Mayo researchers observe genetic fusion of human, animal cells -may help explain origin of AIDS
Mayo Clinic genomics researchers are the first to demonstrate that mixing of genetic material can occur naturally, in a living body.

New g-2 measurement deviates further from standard model
The latest result from an international collaboration of scientists investigating how the spin of a muon is affected as this type of subatomic particle moves through a magnetic field deviates further than previous measurements from theoretical predictions.

Gene affecting bone mass, osteoporosis risk identified
Researchers at Oregon Health & Science University, Portland Veterans Affairs Medical Center and Roche have identified an enzyme affecting skeletal development in mice that may have relevance to human osteoporosis.

New report presents options for oversight of genetic testing of human embryos
A new report by the Genetics and Public Policy Center at Johns Hopkins University outlines policy options to address the scientific and ethical challenges raised by genetic testing of human embryos.

Water and sanitation key to health of infants in developing countries
Research among households in Peru in this week's issue of THE LANCET highlights how healthy growth of infants in less-developed countries is directly related to water supply, water storage, and sanitation-children who grow up in households where these facilities are unavailable or of poor quality are more likely to experience diarrhoeal disease and reduced body growth, with implications for later adult development.

New insight into control of parental gene expression in eggs
Howard Hughes Medical Institute researchers have identified a crucial step in a genetic process required for the development of viable eggs.

Urban areas organized in well developed partnering 'markets'
As more people remain single for longer periods of time, or become single because of divorce, elaborate

Historian reveals spiralling debt has shaped consumer culture for centuries
New Year sales and Christmas shopping sprees have a sting in the tail when credit card bills hit doormats in January, but new research from the University of Warwick shows that rather than being a modern phenomenon, debt and consumer credit dependency were rife in the 1800-1900s, and that formal and informal money-lending was integral to goods exchange.

Salk news: Understanding organ placement
A Salk Institute team of biologists, mathematicians, and physicists has uncovered a novel paradigm for cell communication that provides new insights into the complex question of how the body determines where organs are placed.

Researchers seek to clone 'mad cow disease' resistant cattle strain
Having knocked out prion proteins in laboratory mice, scientists expect to clone a cow by year's end.

NIH funds project to help senior citizens access health care
Receiving services in a convenient way is not a matter of choice for many older people, but of necessity.

Mystery particle may hold clues to universe
University of Melbourne physicists have helped discover a new state of matter that may shed light on the fabric of the universe.

Asthma could be several diseases masquerading as one
People who develop asthma as children may have a different disease than those who develop it as an adult.

First supernova companion star found
A joint European/University of Hawaii team of astronomers has for the first time observed a stellar 'survivor' to emerge from a double star system involving an exploded supernova.

UA astronomers report the widest lensed quasar
UA astronomers have detected a lensed quasar more than twice as wide as any previously reported.

'Science' showcases research on forgetting
Researchers at the University of Oregon and Stanford University have located a mechanism in the human brain that blocks unwanted memories.

Anti-eosinophil therapy shown to be effective in treating hypereosinophilic syndrome
Anti-eosinophil therapy is a safe and effective way to treat patients with hypereosinophilic syndromes, according to new research published in the January 2004 Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology (JACI).

Medically supervised injecting centres should be piloted in the UK
A programme of medically supervised injecting centres should be piloted in the UK, as part of an integrated public health strategy, say the authors of an article in this week's BMJ.

Study suggests possible clue to miscarriage
Low concentrations in early pregnancy of a protein involved in the immune system could be a potential indicator for miscarriage, suggest authors of a research letter in this week's issue of THE LANCET.

Low tar cigarettes do not cut lung cancer risk
The risk of lung cancer is no different in people who smoke medium tar cigarettes, low tar cigarettes, or very low tar cigarettes, concludes new research from the United States.

Overweight and obesity thresholds may be misleading for Asian populations
Internationally recognised body-mass index (BMI) cut-off points for overweight and obesity may not be appropriate for some Asian populations, conclude authors of an article in this week's issue of THE LANCET.

Air pollution may significantly worsen respiratory allergies in individuals with genetic risk
California researchers have found that airborne components of diesel engine exhaust significantly worsen allergy symptoms in people with a certain genetic makeup.

Gene essential for development of normal brain connections resulting from sensory input discovered
Biologists at the University of California, San Diego and the Johns Hopkins University have discovered a gene that plays a key role in initiating changes in the brain in response to sensory experience, a finding that may provide insight into certain types of learning disorders.

UF study suggests life on Earth sprang from borax minerals
Researchers at the University of Florida say they have shown that minerals were key to some of the initial processes that formed life on Earth.

Media Advisory 2 - AGU Ocean Sciences Meeting
Preliminary information is provided on press conferences planned for the 2004 AGU Ocean Sciences Meeting in Portland, Oregon (January 26-30), along with information on the meeting's Press Room.

Hebrew University young researcher award goes to Dr. Nayef Jarrous
Dr. Nayef Jarrous, a young researcher from Shfaram in the north of Israel, is the recipient of the Yoram Ben-Porath Prize as this year's outstanding young researcher at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.

Study finds genital pain more common than believed
A little known condition could be causing pain to millions of women throughout the country.

New UCI center promotes diversity in technology fields
UC Irvine has established a research center in its School of Information and Computer Science (ICS) to study diversity in the computing and information technology fields.

Social stress adversely affects digestive function in subordinate cichlid fish
A new study has determined that social stress adversely affects digestive function in subordinate cichlid fish.

DNA registry to study links among genetics, environment, disease
Scientists at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS) are developing a voluntary DNA registry to study the link among environmental exposures, genetic susceptibility and human disease.

Research reveals brain has biological mechanism to block unwanted memories
For the first time, researchers at Stanford University and the University of Oregon have shown that a biological mechanism exists in the human brain to block unwanted memories.

Book on youth development for practitioners
To inspire youth workers and others interested in cultivating environments that promote positive youth development and behavior, Cornell University human development experts Stephen Hamilton and Mary Agnes Hamilton have published

Farmed salmon more toxic than wild salmon, study finds
A study of more than two metric tons of North American, South American and European salmon has shown that PCBs and other environmental toxins are present at higher levels in farm-raised salmon than in their wild counterparts.

UCSD, Salk researchers define role of abnormal muscle, fat & liver in common metabolic disorder
Metabolic Syndrome, a cluster of health symptoms including obesity, high blood pressure and insulin resistance, puts one in four Americans at increased risk for diabetes, heart disease and stroke.

Scientists identify genes that regulate allergic response to diesel fumes
The risk of developing respiratory allergies from exposure to diesel emissions depends largely on genetics, according to a study funded by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH).
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