Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

June 09, 2004
The rush to pick a perfect embryo
The latest hope for couples struggling to have children is PGD, for pre-implantation genetic diagnosis.

Strengthening independent junior research groups in collaborative research centres
The decision made by the responsible Grants Committee on 24 and 25 May 2004 brings the total number of Collaborative Research Centres funded this year to 272, located at 61 universities, including 19 Transregional Collaborative Research Centres and 14 Transfer Units, receiving total funding of about €363 million.

New research shows that the seasons may be involved in onset of menopause
Research by Hungarian fertility experts published (Thursday 10 June) in Europe's leading reproductive medicine journal Human Reproduction, has revealed that the onset of the menopause may not be dictated only by the fact that a woman's lifetime supply of eggs are running low, but also by changes in the seasons.

How brain gives special resonance to emotional memories
If the emotional memory of a traumatic car accident or the thrill of first love are remembered with a special resonance, it is because they engage different brain structures than do normal memories, Duke University researchers have discovered.

Evidence of flooding at Mangala Valles
These images of fluvial surface features at Mangala Valles on Mars were obtained by the High Resolution Stereo Camera (HRSC) on board the ESA Mars Express spacecraft.

Memory fails you after severe stress
People think they'll never forget traumatic experiences, but new research shows that memory is very hazy after severe stress.

Alzheimer's may leave some forms of memory intact
Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) researchers have made the surprising discovery that people with Alzheimer's disease retain the capability for a specific form of memory used for rote learning of skills, even though their memories of people and events are extinguished.

NNii statement on new thimerosal study
This week, the journal Molecular Psychiatry published a study by researchers at Columbia University on the neurotoxic effects on mice of thimerosal, a mercury derivative that has been used as a preservative in vaccines.

Cult experts converge on University of Alberta campus
More than 170 experts on cults, including former and current members of cults, will meet at the University of Alberta this weekend to discuss issues such as how to re-socialize children who were born and raised in cults.

Damaged genes in aging human brain provide clues to cognitive decline
Researchers at Children's Hospital Boston have uncovered a kind of genetic signature associated with the aging human brain that may contribute to cognitive decline associated with aging.

Nature's ambush: pregnancy more likely from single unprotected intercourse than believed
US research published (Thursday 10 June) in Europe's leading reproductive medicine journal Human Reproduction suggests that a single act of unprotected intercourse is more likely to lead to an unwanted pregnancy than was previously believed.

Low-cost robot could locate land mines in rugged terrain
Four Johns Hopkins undergraduate engineering students have designed and built a remote-controlled robotic vehicle to find deadly land mines in rugged terrain and mark their location with a spray of paint.

Researchers develop better understanding of tamoxifen resistance in breast cancer patients
A new study by researchers at Georgetown's Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center may have implications for the thousands of breast cancer patients who develop resistance to antiestrogen drugs such as Tamoxifen®.

Oldest Antarctic ice core reveals climate history
Secrets of the Earth's past climate locked in a three-kilometre long Antarctic ice core are revealed this week in the journal Nature. The core from Dome C, high on East Antarctica's plateau, contains snowfall from the last 740,000 years and is by far the oldest continuous climate record obtained from ice cores so far.

Study of proteins offers insights into organization of biological networks
Research into the many-sided interactions of proteins in yeast cells is revealing that such networks may have something in common with other kinds of systems, from the World Wide Web to the country's electric-power grid.

New genetic risk factor for colon cancer identified
An international research team has identified a virulent, new genetic risk factor for colon cancer - a discovery that could lead to early screening and treatment for people who have this genetic disposition to contract the disease.

BU chemists debut online resource for researchers seeking to build new bioactive compounds
Chemists in the Center for Chemical Methodology and Library Development at Boston University (CMLD-BU) have unveiled a fully searchable, publicly accessible, Internet-based notebook of organic chemistry protocols.

NASA data shows deforestation affects climate in the Amazon
NASA satellite data are giving scientists insight into how large-scale deforestation in the Amazon Basin in South America is affecting regional climate.

Exercise more critical than calcium for adolescent bones
Exercise is more influential than calcium intake in determining bone strength in young women, a Penn State College of Medicine study suggests.

Smile-saving devices help save face
Let the games begin! As the weather starts warming up, people naturally start heading outdoors in search of physical activity, thus increasing a person's chance of suffering a mouth-related injury.

UO researchers learn to precisely control nanoparticle spacing
University of Oregon chemists can now control precisely the spacing between small gold nanoparticles.

Landmarks smaller than a pinhead
A team at the University of Newcastle upon Tyne, UK, has recreated two major British landmarks - the Tyne Bridge and the Antony Gormley's Angel of the North sculpture - so they are smaller than a pinhead and invisible to the naked eye, to showcase their expertise in advanced miniaturisation technology.

Story tips from the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory, June 2004
Tips from the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratories include new roofing materials that reflect more of the sun's IR rays, solving a mystery regarding superconductor's high-transition temperatures, and why measuring the carbon flux of the environment provides important information.

Novel 'delivery' method for nutrients wins Kaye Innovation Award for Hebrew university students
Two Ph.D. students at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem have contributed to the development of

Effectiveness of chest compression devise to be tested by University of Pittsburgh
As part of an international study, researchers in the department of emergency medicine at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine will test the effectiveness of a mechanical chest compression device, known as AutoPulse,ä developed by Revivant Corporation of Sunnyvale, Calif., to see if it does a better job than manual chest compressions for the treatment of out-of-hospital sudden cardiac arrest.

Drunken worms reveal a genetic basis of alcohol response
By exposing populations of the roundworm C. elegans to alcohol and pinpointing subtle genetic differences among strains that respond differently, researchers have identified one gene that affects alcohol sensitivity.

Pepper prodigies pursue plants like those picked by parents
At the Chile Pepper Institute at New Mexico State University, research can be pretty hot and kind of cool at the same time.

Human subjects play mind games
That's using your brain. For the first time in humans, a team headed by researchers at Washington University in St.

Spinal trial raises hope
An initial trial for a controversial therapy for spinal cord injuries may aid recovery if administered within two weeks of an accident, the American company behind the trial claims.

Fermilab results change Higgs mass estimate
Scientists at the Department of Energy's Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory announced on June 9, 2004 new results that change the best estimate of the mass of the postulated Higgs boson from approximately 96 GeV/c2 to 117 GeV/c2.

Team set to upgrade weather station on Mt. McKinley
Obtaining weather data from North America's highest peak is no easy task.

Tongue studs cause more problems than chipped teeth
Wearing a tongue stud puts people at risk for chipped teeth, recessed gums and nerve damage.

New non-aspirin pain drug proves effective against recurrent prostate cancer
Early results from a University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Medicine study may determine if drugs called Cox-2 inhibitors, a newer type of non-aspirin pain medicine now widely prescribed for arthritis symptoms, may benefit men with recurrent prostate cancer.

Top quark measurements give 'God particle' new lease on life
Researchers from the University of Rochester have helped measure the elusive top quark with unparalleled precision, and the surprising results affect everything from the Higgs boson, nicknamed the

Osteoporosis and oral health
Osteoporosis affects 10 million people. Most individuals inflicted with osteoporosis are not diagnosed until a fracture occurs.

Study suggests how Alzheimer's patients can be trained
Researchers have discovered that people with early-stage Alzheimer's retain a form of memory capability that could point the way toward training and rehabilitation to help preserve their mental functioning.

Nitric oxide deficiency raises cardiovascular disease risk in African Americans
African Americans suffer from cardiovascular diseases at a rate about five times higher than the rest of the U.S. population.

Soft drinks, especially non-colas and iced tea, hurt hard enamel
Many carbonated beverages - especially non-cola drinks and canned ice tea -- harm enamel, the protective shell around teeth.

NIH launches first center in Nationwide Chemical Genomics Network
The National Institutes of Health (NIH) today announced the establishment of the NIH Chemical Genomics Center - the first component of a nationwide network that will produce innovative chemical

Why grandparents prefer certain kin to others
Grandparents systemically prefer some grandchildren to others because of doubts about genetic lineage new Australian research confirms.

All ecosystems are equally productive under drought conditions
Under drought conditions, tropical forests can be as efficient at using water as desert ecosystems, researchers report.

Carnegie Mellon computational biologist Russell Schwartz receives prestigious CAREER award
Carnegie Mellon University computational biologist Russell Schwartz has received the National Science Foundation's prestigious Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) award.

Enzyme containing selenium may promote type 2 diabetes
A Cornell study suggests that higher than normal amounts of a selenium-containing enzyme could promote type 2 diabetes.

Yoga reduces fatigue in MS patients, OHSU study finds
Just six months of yoga significantly reduces fatigue in people with multiple sclerosis (MS), but it has no effect on alertness and cognitive function, says a new Oregon Health & Science University study published in Neurology.

Astronomers detect molecular nitrogen outside Solar System
Researchers have for the first time detected molecular nitrogen in interstellar space, giving them their first detailed look into how the universe's fifth most-abundant element behaves in an environment outside the Solar System.

New ice core record will help understanding of ice ages, global warming, CU prof says
Recovery of a new ice core in Antarctica that extends back 740,000 years -- nearly twice as long as any other ice core record -- is extremely important and will help scientists better understand the Earth's climate and issues related to global warming, according to a University of Colorado at Boulder professor. 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