Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

March 01, 2004
VLT smashes the record of the farthest known galaxy
Using ESO's Very Large Telescope, and the magnification effect of a gravitational lens, French and Swiss astronomers have provided a strong case for what is now the new record holder - and by far - of the most distant galaxy known in the Universe.

Improved manufacturing produces better polymer displays
High-speed, reproducible, and reliable processes, such as roll-to-roll display manufacturing, is proving effective in the fabrication of light-emitting polymers (LEPs).

Memories light up the corners of our minds
Memories do indeed light up the corners of our mind, just as the songwriter said.

U Iowa study identifies damaging mechanism in transplants and heart attacks
A University of Iowa study suggests that inhibiting a certain protein involved in inflammation might be of therapeutic benefit in organ transplantation, heart attacks and possibly stroke.

Hecates Tholus volcano in 3D
Hecates Tholus volcano as seen by the High Resolution Stereo Camera (HRSC) on Mars Express during orbit 32 from an altitude of 275 km.

Field tests advance seismic landmine-detection system
A landmine-detection system under development at the Georgia Institute of Technology offers potential advantages over existing technologies and could ultimately help prevent the thousands of injuries and deaths land mines cause annually.

Activism prompts teen smokers to cut back on cigarettes, Stanford study finds
A Stanford study involving 10 Bay Area continuation, or alternative, high schools found that among students who were regular smokers, those who engaged in anti-tobacco advocacy efforts significantly reduced their own cigarette use compared to teens in traditional drug abuse prevention classes.

Dads miss opportunity to learn about their kids
Urban fathers say they want to participate in their child's health care but work and other barriers stand in the way, according to a study in Pediatrics by a Saint Louis University doctor.

New imaging technique developed to identify breast cancer
Researchers at Johns Hopkins have for the first time used a chemical marker detected by proton magnetic resonance spectroscopic imaging (MRSI) to successfully diagnose breast cancer.

Viral immunosuppression: Not just a game of hide and go seek
When facing immune responses, viruses can either attempt to elude them or confront them.

Patients should be consulted before dialysis treatment begins
Patients undergoing kidney dialysis should be educated about the differnt health effects of hemodialysis and peritoneal dialysis.

Vaccine nips breast cancer in the bud
Preneoplastic lesions, detectable by breast cancer screening, are made up of altered cells that are not themselves cancerous but indicate an increased likelihood that a benign or cancerous tumor may subsequently form.

Breast cancer follow-ups 'no longer guess-work' thanks to new physics research
Research published today (Monday 1st March 2004) in the Institute of Physics journal Physics in Medicine & Biology reveals a new technique that will help doctors to judge more accurately how long they should continue to see patients following successful treatment of breast cancer.

Teens and young adults - the new frontier in cancer says US cancer specialist
Adolescent and young adult cancer is the new frontier in oncology, according to leading US cancer specialist Professor Archie Bleyer speaking in London at the Teenage Cancer Trust's Third International Conference on Cancer and the Adolescent.

Desert science center aims to bridge rift between Jordan and Israel
In an effort to encourage scientific collaboration between Arab and Israeli students, the governments of Jordan and Israel have agreed to set aside 150 acres along their border for the construction of a major environmental research center that will be operated in collaboration with Stanford University and Cornell University.

Targeted antiviral prophylaxis of flu case contacts could successfully contain pandemic influenza
In a future outbreak of pandemic influenza, supplies of flu vaccine might not be available quickly enough to contain the spread of disease.

Enigmatic X-ray sources may point to new class of black holes
Mysterious, powerful X-ray sources found in nearby galaxies may represent a new class of objects, according to data from NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory.

Toxin combo common in fish appears capable of impairing motor skills
Pups of female rats exposed to a combination of polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) and methylmercury (MeHg) slip and fall more often trying to maneuver on a rotating rod than do pups from non-exposed moms, scientists say.

Envisat concludes a busy second year in orbit
On the last night of February 2002 ESA's Envisat - the largest and most sophisticated Earth Observation spacecraft ever built - swapped the tropical atmosphere of French Guiana for orbital vacuum, as it was shot 800 km into the sky by Ariane 5 launcher.

Stevens helps establish National Small Arms Center
Stevens Institute of Technology is a partner in the founding of the National Small Arms Center at New Jersey's Picatinny Arsenal, it was announced recently.

Carnegie Mellon's Nanofab Lab gears up to be region's best equipped for tech startups
Carnegie Mellon University's Nanofabrication Facility is becoming home-sweet-home for a handful of technology startups using tiny computer chips that can improve the sound in cell phones or gauge damage done to a disk drive when dropped by a user.

March 2, 2004, Annals of Internal Medicine tip sheet
Highlights of this issue of the Annals of Internal Medicine include a new study finding that antibacterial products don't reduce symptoms of infections and a U.S. group does not recommend for or against screening for family violence.

Announcement of the chicken genome sequence and genome variation maps
The Beijing Genomics Institute (BGI) of the Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS) announced today the construction of a chicken genome variation map.

Gene therapy for a broken heart
Gene therapy represents a potential strategy for the treatment of cardiac dysfunction.

The hidden impact of SARS
Leslie Nickell and colleagues present a glimpse of the hidden toll exacted by SARS among staff at the Sunnybrook and Women's College Health Sciences Centre during the first phase of the outbreak in Toronto.

Keep prescribing information private
Dick Zoutman and colleagues weigh in on the issue of protecting patient and physician prescription information and question the propriety of the practice of pharmacies selling such information to pharmaceutical companies.

Homeless children have high rates of asthma
The prevalence of asthma among homeless children in New York City is approximately 40 percent, which is six times the national rate for children, according to an article in the March issue of The Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

Fast food chains like to be close to the competition
Rather like buses - first there are no fast food outlets to be seen, then two or three come along almost together, according to new research sponsored by the ESRC.

Fat: It isn't always bad for the heart
Unwanted fat may have a bigger effect on the heart than physicians previously thought.

Researchers to design intervention for work-related injury
The National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases has awarded Temple University researchers a $1.7 million grant to determine whether intervention can prevent work-related injury from developing into a chronic disability.

PNNL recognized for commercializing technologies
Pacific Northwest National Laboratory has been recognized for transferring technologies that will enhance drug discovery, treat cancer with fewer side effects, and advance the capabilities of sophisticated analytical instruments known as inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometers for biological and biomedical research.

Rensselaer awarded $2.7 million NIH grant to improve drug development process
The National Institutes of Health (NIH) has awarded Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute a $2.7 million, four-year grant to develop new tools for drug discovery.

Michigan's Allen Creek Preschool recipient of first Children and Family Community Service Award
The American Psychoanalytic Association (APsaA) is pleased to announce that the Allen Creek Preschool in Ann Arbor, Michigan is the recipient of the association's first Children and Family Community Service Award.

Potentially blinding eye disease more prevalent than previously thought
The incidence and prevalence of uveitis, a potentially blinding eye disease, was found to be much greater than previous estimates.

International public health expert Jeffrey Koplan addresses emerging infectious diseases conference
Many of the dominant public health topics of the past two years, including smallpox, SARS, avian influenza, and mad cow disease, illustrate the complex relationship between the science of public health and infectious diseases and the practice of public health and politics.

Research news from Tufts University, Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy: March 2004
This press release offers the latest information from the Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy at Tufts University.

New Web site for biogeoscience community announced
The emerging field of biogeoscience will soon have a new home on the World Wide Web.

UK Teenage Cancer Trust demands government action to aid young cancer patients
Teenagers and young adults have been neglected ignored and 'defined out of existence' by the government and the NHS, the head of a UK cancer charity said today (1 March) in London at the Teenage Cancer Trust's Third International Conference on Cancer and the Adolescent.

Study shows United States may have more pediatricians than it needs for the next 20 years
Researchers have found there will be a 58 percent increase in the number of pediatricians and only a 9.3 percent increase in the number of kids in the US during the next 20 years.

Chicken genome assembled
The National Human Genome Research Institute (NHGRI), one of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), today announced that the first draft of the chicken genome sequence has been deposited into free public databases for use by biomedical and agricultural researchers around the globe.

NIH researchers test promising new therapy for blinding eye disease
A clinical trial found that once monthly intravenous infusions with an immune therapy drug called daclizumab controlled uveitis and was well tolerated in seven of 10 patients over a four-year period.

Founder of UCSD bioengineering program honored with lifetime achievement award
UC San Diego bioengineering professor Yuen-Cheng Fung, widely considered the father of biomechanics, has received a lifetime achievement award from fellow Asian American engineers.

Tony Hunter and Raymond N. DuBois awarded Landon-AACR Prizes for Cancer Research
Two scientists whose landmark discoveries in basic and translational research set the stage for new ways to treat and prevent cancer are being honored this year with the prestigious Landon-AACR Prizes for Cancer Research.

New technique dates Saharan groundwater as million years old
An international team of researchers report the most extensive measurements yet made for krypton-81 in groundwater.

Minors able to buy nicotine replacement therapy products
Although over-the-counter nicotine replacement therapy products like gum and patches have labeling indicating that they are not for sale to minors, these products were successfully purchased by a minor in more than 80 percent of purchase attempts, according to an article in The Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

American Academy of Neurology presents 56th Annual Meeting in San Francisco, April 24 - May 1, 2004
More than 10,000 are expected to attend the American Academy of Neurology 56th Annual Meeting in San Francisco, April 24 - May 1, 2004.

Penn researchers introduce a new nanotube-laced gel, create new means of aligning nanotubes
Penn researchers have devised a new method for aligning isolated single wall carbon nanotubes and, in the process, have created a new kind of material with liquid crystal-like properties, which they call nematic nanotube gels.

Blacks at greater risk for developing cataracts
For the first time, a nine-year population study has demonstrated that persons of African descent have nearly twice the incidence of cataracts than Caucasians.

ESA's Rosetta launch re-scheduled: Follow the launch from an ESA establishment
After two successive delays, the launch of Rosetta is now scheduled for Tuesday 2 March at 04:17 or 04:37 Kourou time (08:17 or 08:37 CET) on board an Ariane 5 launcher from the European Spaceport in Kourou, French Guiana.

Orthokeratology contact lenses cause permanent vision loss in children
Children who wore contact lenses overnight as part of their orthokeratology regime developed corneal ulcers, resulting in corneal scarring and vision loss.

Psychiatric study for cancer patients to measure psychoactive medication
Stage IV cancer patients who suffer from anxiety may want to investigate a new research study recently approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) taking place at The Research and Education Institute at Harbor-UCLA Medical Center in Torrance, CA.

Elective cesarean sections
Mary Hannah argues that a woman's request for elective cesarean section should be supported if she understands the potential risks and benefits.

Cancer rates in teens and early 20s rising
A new analysis of cancer figures for England shows that the overall incidence among teenagers and young adults is rising, with the biggest increase among 20 to 24-year-olds, particularly in lymphoma, melanoma and germ cell tumours, including testicular germ cell tumours, the Teenage Cancer Trust's Third International Conference on Teenage Cancer in London is being told.

Disulfiram and cognitive behavioral therapy appear effective for treating cocaine dependence
Disulfiram (a drug used to help selected patients with alcohol disorders remain sober) and cognitive behavioral therapy appear effective in reducing cocaine use, especially among cocaine users who are not dependent on alcohol, according to an article in the March issue of The Archives of General Psychiatry, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

More affordable distributed generation will reduce likelihood of major blackouts
Recent power blackouts in the United States and Europe as well as increasing loads on centralized generation underline the greater need for distributed generation.

High societal cost of brain and nervous system disorders attributed to genetic influences
More than 40 percent of the societal burden of brain disorders is estimated to be due to complex genetic influences, according to a special report in the March issue of The Archives of General Psychiatry, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

Studies focus on vascular spasm as a common cause of cardiomyopathy
Even though many cardiologists ignore it, vascular spasm happens. During spasm, constricted vessels cut off the blood supply to parts of the heart, causing further damage, reduced cardiac function, irregular heart rhythms and death.

ORNL earns four Federal Laboratory Consortium awards
Four of the 24 awards to be presented in May for outstanding work in the process of transferring a technology to the commercial marketplace will go to the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory.

Information paradox solved? If so, black holes are 'fuzzballs'
Stephen Hawking and Kip Thorne may owe John Preskill a set of encyclopedias.

Three APsaA members receive $35,000 awards
The American Psychoanalytic Association (APsaA) is pleased to announce that three of its members are among the four recipients of the 2003 Signourney Awards
Teenagers with cancer are missing out on vital services
Dr Ian Gibson MP, Chair of the UK's All Party Working Group on Cancer, has today called on the Government to make further provisions for teenagers with cancer, who are currently falling far behind children and adults when it comes to cancer services.

Screening removes West Nile from bood supply
Screening of blood donations for West Nile virus by blood banks has likely prevented more than 1,000 transfusion-related infections during the second half of 2003, say researchers from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Wavefront-guided LASIK improves contrast sensitivity
Wavefront-guided LASIK corrects higher-order optical distortions and provides significantly improved contrast sensitivity compared with standard LASIK.

Bar characteristics, women's behavior in bars tied to their risk for bar-related aggression
Environmental characteristics of bars, as well as women's behavior in bars, influence their risk for bar-related aggression, according to a study conducted by researchers in the University at Buffalo's Research Institute on Addictions.

Physics tip sheet #40 - March 1, 2004
Highlights of this tip sheet include the physics of file swapping; frictionless, nanoscale motion; a look at what makes some networks particularly resilient; precise manipulations of millions of atoms; and further research on sonolunminescent fusion.

Human health, astronomy, and environmental concerns merge at Dark-Sky meeting
Physicians, engineers, national park staff, astronomers, government officials, and many others will gather at the 16th Annual International Dark-Sky Association Meeting in Tucson, Ariz., March 10-13, to discuss their shared interest in the night-time environment and its affect on human activity. 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