Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

May 27, 2004
COX-2 inhibitor could be safest anti-inflammatory drug for older people
A Canadian study involving over 130,000 older people in this week's issue of The Lancet shows how the anti-inflammatory cyclo-oxygenase-2 (COX-2) inhibitor celecoxib may have a lower risk of congestive heart failure compared with other non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs.

Anaesthesia guidance system can reduce awareness during surgery
An Australian study in this week's issue of The Lancet highlights how the neuromonitoring of brain patterns of patients during surgery could help guide the use of anaesthesia and reduce the risk of patients becoming aware during surgery-thought to occur in around 0.1-0.2% of patients.

NSF launches Discovery Corps fellowship program
The National Science Foundation (NSF) has named the first six fellows of its new Discovery Corps: a pilot program that is exploring innovative ways for scientists to combine their research expertise with service to society as a whole.

Ecological science for a crowded planet
Ecologists must take their science in bold new directions if humans and the natural systems on which they depend are to coexist in the future.

Mutant biological machine makes proteins but can't let go
Writing in the May 28 issue of Cell, Johns Hopkins researchers report that four critical components of cells' protein-building machine don't do what scientists had long assumed.

Figs may inhibit growth and survival of harmful microbes in food
Figs may inhibit growth and survival of harmful microbes in food, according to research presented at the 104th General Meeting of the American Society for Microbiology.

UC Riverside professor to spend year with US State Department
Dr. David A. Eastmond, a toxicologist and professor of cell biology at UC Riverside, was among five academics announced Wednesday, May 26, by Secretary of State Colin L.

Fusion science centers funded at University of Maryland/UCLA and University of Rochester
The Energy Department has selected the University of Maryland/UCLA and the University of Rochester to host two new Fusion Science Centers.

Global warming: a formidable challenge to health
Global warming is a real concern to health experts, according to a senior scientist in this week's BMJ.

Microbes found in Mayan ruins may deteriorate stone from inside out
Microbes found in Mayan ruins may deteriorate stone from inside out, according to research presented at the 104th General Meeting of the American Society for Microbiology.

Reduced mitochondrial function important mechanism in aging
Scientists at the Karolinska Institute have found that changes in the

GPs' beliefs about patients influences treatment
General practitioners' beliefs and attitudes towards patients with chronic fatigue syndrome may be a barrier to effective treatment, finds new research available on

'Noisy' genes can have big impact
Experiments by Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) investigators have revealed how randomness in gene expression can have profound biological effects, both good and bad.

UW-Madison scientists find a key to cell division
A cellular structure discovered 125 years ago and dismissed by many biologists as

More than one-third of US adults use complementary and alternative medicine
According to a new nationwide government survey, 36 percent of U.S. adults aged 18 years and over use some form of complementary and alternative medicine (CAM).

Patent on beagle dogs cancelled
In a major victory for patented beagle dogs, the Board of Regents of the University of Texas System in Austin, Texas, disclaimed patent #6,444,872, which covers live beagle dogs intended for use in experiments.

Mouse study could aid vaccine designers
Investigators from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), part of the National Institutes of Health, have conducted studies in mice to gain a new picture of how the immune system's

Hormone therapy may still offer important health benefits to postmenopausal women
Despite the highly publicized closing of the Women's Health Initiative study, the scientific community should not rule out that women may benefit from hormone therapy after menopause, say researchers at UC Davis, Duke and Harvard Universities.

Gene therapy with growth factor seems promising therapy for incurable muscle disorder ALS
ALS is an incurable paralysing muscle disorder affecting five in every one hundred thousand people.

Big tobacco is watching
Leading public-health scientists writing in this week's issue of The Lancet are calling for changes in the management of British American Tobacco's (BATs) UK information depository.

Chemists make molecular interlocked rings
UCLA chemists have made a mechanically interlocked compound whose molecules have the topology of the interlocked Borromean rings, which research groups worldwide have been pursuing, they report May 28 in Science.

Study suggests double punch could more efficiently kill viruses
A study revealing new information about how viral proteins move between cells and alert the immune system suggests that a double-punch approach to vaccine design would make them more effective.

Fostering Diversity in the Sciences Symposium
Increasing participation of underrepresented groups in the environmental and biological sciences is the theme for an upcoming symposium presented by the Organization for Tropical Studies (OTS).

Distinguished, outstanding, innovative - optometrists receive honors from UH
At the recent commencement ceremonies for the University of Houston's College of Optometry (UHCO), a trio of awards was bestowed on two alumni and one faculty member.

More energy from smokestacks
Two inventors have come up with a simple idea to harvest waste heat from industrial smokestacks, and turn it into electricity.

Faith in child protection system must be restored
Recent court cases into unexplained infant deaths have led to widespread confusion and have made many paediatricians reluctant to take part in child protection cases, warn experts in this week's BMJ.

UT Southwestern's Dr. Charles Pak receives international award for kidney-stone research
Dr. Charles Y.C. Pak, a world-renowned leader in mineral metabolism research and professor of internal medicine at UT Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas, today received the International Urolithiasis Society's Lifetime Contributions in Stone Disease Award at its symposium in Hong Kong.

Floods, bugs and Hollywood disasters
Devastation at the box office, bug whoopee and toxic mementos are just a few of the topics experts at Michigan State University can discuss as we end a week of heavy rains and head into the holiday weekend.

Researchers identify basis for irreversible damage in multiple sclerosis
Yale researchers and collaborators have identified molecules that underlie nerve fiber degeneration in patients with secondary progressive multiple sclerosis.

Unexpected changes in Earth's climate observed on the dark side of the moon
Scientists who monitor Earth's reflectance by measuring the moon's earthshine have observed large climate fluctuations since 1984.

Inexperienced surgeons operate on most ovarian cancer patients in Maryland
Johns Hopkins researchers report that more than half of ovarian cancer surgeries in Maryland are done by surgeons who perform the operation only once or at most four times a year.

Offending by psychiatric patients is rare
Despite great public concern, offending by psychiatric patients after discharge is rare, according to new research available on

Addressing the Healthcare Needs of Our Aging Population with Technology
Addressing the Healthcare Needs of Our Aging Population with Technology is a one-day symposium designed to focus on the role of computer, communication and other electronic technologies to improve the quality and cost-efficiency of geriatric care.

Quake in Alaska changed Yellowstone geysers
A powerful earthquake that rocked Alaska in 2002 not only triggered small earthquakes almost 2,000 miles away at Wyoming's Yellowstone National Park - as was reported at the time - but also changed the timing and behavior of some of Yellowstone's geysers and hot springs, a new study says.

History of vineyards maps Britain's changing climate
The locations of vineyards across the UK during the last 2,000 years and what they may tell us about how our climate has changed will be tackled in a lecture by Professor Richard Selley of Imperial College London on Wednesday 2 June.

Pharmacogenomics could replace 'trial-and-error' with science from the human genome
The future use of a gene-based technology called pharmacogenomics could lower the cost of health care by decreasing the occurrence of adverse drug effects and increasing the probability of successful therapy.

Clemson University researcher reaches for the stars to prevent osteoporosis
A Clemson University researcher looks to astronauts in space to help prevent osteoporosis here on earth.

U.S. Rep. Dave Weldon, Florida Tech announce new hydrogen fuel center
U.S. Rep. Dave Weldon and the Florida Institute of Technology announced today at a joint news conference the creation of the Florida Tech Hydrogen Research Center.

Soya foods may help to reduce cancer of the womb
Regular intake of soya foods is associated with a reduced risk of endometrial cancer (cancer affecting the lining of the womb), finds a study among Chinese women in this week's BMJ.

New painless myogrpahy technique aids neuromuscular disease research
There are more than 200 known neuromuscular diseases affecting over 400,000 people in the United States alone.

The silence of the genes
Researchers from the USC/Norris Comprehensive Cancer Center are heralding an entirely new approach to the treatment of aging, inherited diseases and cancer in a review paper published in today's issue of the journal Nature.

Serono receives FDA approval for Gonal-f RFF Pen to treat infertility
Serono, Inc., the US affiliate of Serono (virt-x: SEO and NYSE: SRA), announced today that the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved a prefilled device that delivers a new liquid formulation of the most prescribed gonadotropin in the world: Gonal-f® RFF Pen (follitropin alfa injection).

Milky way churning out new stars at a furious pace
Some of the first data from a new orbiting infrared telescope are revealing that the Milky Way - and by analogy galaxies in general - is making new stars at a much more prolific pace than astronomers imagined.

Researchers identify new target of protein involved in cancerous cell growth
Researchers have identified a new target of a cancer-causing gene.

Staying on the path - One atom at a time
A new report in the May 24 Proceedings of the Royal Society of London.

Targeting genes with viruses to select populations of nerve cells
Yale scientists have discovered a new way of illuminating MCH neurons by using a virus that has been genetically engineered so that it cannot replicate.

'Heads-up' display lives up to its name
Using a common laptop computer and a sophisticated head-mounted projection device, students at the University of Washington (UW) have created a system to help people with poor vision navigate around stationary objects.

Chronic care medicine: Physicians say 'help!'
In a national survey of practicing family physicians, pediatricians, internists and surgeons, the majority reported that their training in chronic care medicine was too thin overall to meet the demands of their practices.

Brain disease research, particle physics meet in the middle (ware)
The study of Alzheimer's disease and the analysis of particle collisions may not appear to have much in common, but behind the scenes, middleware being developed with support from the National Science Foundation (NSF) is helping groups of researchers in neuroscience, physics and other fields to apply the power of grid-based computational resources.

Loyola decides to test new blood substitute in trauma patients at the scene of injury
Loyola University Health System plans to test PolyHeme®, an investigational oxygen-carrying blood substitute designed to increase survival of critically injured and bleeding trauma patients at the scene of injury, beginning July 1, 2004, as part of a national clinical trial.

Published research contains 'high level of statistical errors'
Evidence based practice is currently in vogue, and basing medical practice on published evidence is clearly a good idea, but what if the published findings are inaccurate?

A research cliffhanger awaits University of Cincinnati team heading to Crete
A tiny speck of an island in the broad expanse of the Mediterranean is drowning with tourists.

Scientists look at moon to shed light on Earth's climate
According to a new NASA-funded study, insights into Earth's climate may come from an unlikely place: the moon. 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