Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

March 11, 2004
Two asteroid fly-bys for Rosetta
Today the Rosetta Science Working Team has made the final selection of the asteroids that Rosetta will observe at close quarters during its journey to Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko.

Families, media and education crucial in preventing eating disorders
The process of educating young people on the prevention of eating disorders needs to start as early as middle-school, emphasizes Danny J.

MIT adds artistic spin to study of electromagnetism
The winning images in MIT's first annual

The hidden health trauma of child soldiers
A research letter and editorial in this week's issue report the horror facing an estimated 300,000 children worldwide forced to become child soldiers.

UCI study identifies how new neurons grow in adult brain
A UC Irvine study on cell growth in the adult brain may provide important clues to the potential use of stem cells in the treatment of memory-related diseases such as Alzheimer's.

Loss of smell linked to key protein in Alzheimer's disease
Researchers at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine have linked smell loss in mice with excessive levels of a key protein associated with Alzheimer's and Parkinson's disease.

Novel prostate cancer marker may lead to earlier diagnosis and fewer repeat bioposies
Findings published in this month's issue of the Journal of Urology indicate prostate cancer could be detected five years before it is currently being diagnosed by testing for a protein in tissue that indicates the presence of early disease.

Current policy for complex surgery is misguided
Survival after complex surgery is better not only in hospitals that do a large volume of the same procedure, but also in hospitals that do a large volume of any complex procedure, finds new research.

Protease-inhibitor cocktail protects, increases anti-microbial action of promising new peptide
The anti-microbial activity of promising peptides shown in laboratory studies to kill several medically important fungi, some of which are resistant to current drugs, can be enhanced further by protecting the peptides from enzymes programmed to destroy them, University at Buffalo oral biologists have found.

Revolutionary chemical instrument receives historical recognition
The development of the Beckman pH meter solved a problem confronting the California citrus industry: How to get a rapid and accurate measurement of acidity in lemon juice.

Method produces uniform, self-assembled nanocells
NIST researchers have applied for a patent on a new method for producing uniform, self-assembled nanocells.

Researchers model embryo implantation and tumour metastasis in fruit flies
A research team at The Hospital for Sick Children and the University of Toronto led by Dr.

Study suggests brain haemorrhage in babies over age one month unlikely from traumatic delivery
UK research in this week's issue of THE LANCET shows how asymptomatic subdural haematomas (bleeding in the brain) among newborn babies are more common than previously thought, are associated with the mode of delivery during childbirth, and are undetectable after a baby is a month old.

Scientists call for less destructive remediation at DOE sites
Some clean-up efforts have been based on the unrealistic scenario that people will live on slightly contaminated land on U.S.

Gene variants may increase susceptibility to type 2 diabetes
International research teams studying two distinct populations have found variants in a gene that may predispose people to type 2 diabetes, the most common form of the disease.

New study supports use of PET scans in early diagnosis of Alzheimer's disease
Recent studies have demonstrated that Positron Emission Tomography (PET) scans may be the most accurate method of diagnosing Alzheimer's disease (AD), particularly in its early stages.

Field Museum maps 'social assets' of Chicago's industrialized Lake Calumet region
Is the community half full or half empty? Is Chicago's Lake Calumet region the wasteland or jewel of the city?

Light wave measurements make circuits better
New NIST measurements of key wavelengths of ultraviolet light -- down to a few millionths of a nanometer -- are among the most precise ever reported.

High-performance, single-crystal plastic transistors reveal hidden behavior
Printing circuits on sheets of plastic may offer a low-cost technique for manufacturing thin-film transistors for flexible displays, but maximizing the performance of such devices will require a detailed, fundamental understanding of how charge flows through organic semiconductors.

New environmental journalism website holds more than 700 articles in three languages
The Biodiversity Reporting Award (BDRA), an environmental journalism competition held in six countries, launched its revamped website today, making more than 700 environmental articles in three languages available to researchers and journalists.

How couples manage parenting forecasts later marital quality, study finds
Just because a married couple has a good relationship when a child is born is no guarantee the marriage will stay that way as their child grows older, a new study suggests.

Gene links hereditary intestinal disorder with stroke danger
Two seemingly disparate hereditary syndromes actually stem, in some patients, from a single genetic defect, according to Duke University Medical Center geneticists.

Delving into defects spurs prospects for chip insulator
Hafnium oxide prevents currents from leaking through the ultrathin layers of semiconductor chips about 1000 times better than conventional silicon oxide, but its prospects have been dampened by too many current-draining defects.

Newly cloned gene key to global adaptation of wheat
By isolating and cloning the VRN2 gene in wheat that controls vernalization -- the cold-weather requirement for triggering flowering -- a team of researchers at the University of California, Davis, has pieced together a clearer picture of how wheat has been able to adapt to such a wide range of climates and become one of the world's staple food grains.

Stark differences in care at top US hospitals revealed
Striking differences exist in the care provided to dying patients by top US hospitals, according to researchers in this week's BMJ.

Charge doping of molecules one atom at a time
In the semiconductor industry, bulk silicon is doped with various atoms to get materials with precisely tuned electronic properties.

Study: National medical privacy law makes health research harder, more expensive
As the one-year anniversary of the nation's medical privacy law approaches, a new study shows the negative impact that its implementation may be having on certain kinds of health research.

Johns Hopkins gene hunters pinpoint new cancer gene target
Scientists at the Johns Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Center and Howard Hughes Medical Institute have found mutations in a gene linked to the progression of colon and other cancers.

Electronic device standards to yield choicer chops
Increasingly meat processors use electronic devices and equipments such as optical probes, ultrasonic sensors and digital cameras to evaluate critical fat to meat ratios.

SARS without pneumonia could be common in outbreak areas
Results of research from Hong Kong in this week's issue of THE LANCET suggests that severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) without pneumonia could be common among populations affected by SARS outbreaks.

USGS report: America's thirst remains stable
Despite growing population and increasing electricity production, water use in the United States remains fairly stable, according to a new report released today by the U.S.

NIST study helps auto engineers by the numbers
A NIST research project has identified a potential source of error in the surface roughness data used in the automotive industry to predict how friction affects production of metal parts during forming.

Breast cancer study suggests role for tissue in carcinogenesis
A breast cancer study suggests a role for tissue in carcinogenesis, according to Tufts University researchers.

'Before and after' diet ads promote bias against overweight people
A particular form of diet advertisement - the

Random drug testing in schools is unworkable
Random drug testing in schools is unworkable because schools could not satisfy government criteria for introducing new screening programmes, claims a public health expert in this week's BMJ.

National Academies announce nanotechnology conference set for November
The National Academies Keck FUTURES INITIATIVE today announced that it will host a conference on nanoscience and nanotechnology from Nov.

Doping buckyballs with atoms, one at a time
By adding potassium atoms to familiar soccer-ball-shaped carbon

Possible link discovered between gene responsible for blood vessel development and ACD in newborns
Researchers at St. Michael's Hospital examining a gene responsible for blood vessel development have discovered a possible link to a fatal respiratory disease in newborns which has no identified cause or cure.

Microbe's trick provides a template for willowy crystals
Writing in the March 12, 2004 issue of the journal Science, a team of scientists from the University of California, Berkeley and the University of Wisconsin-Madison describe not only the discovery of the willowy microbe-made crystalline structures, but also the process by which they are produced.
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