Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

August 02, 2004
Substance use and mood and anxiety disorders among the most prevalent psychiatric disorders
Substance abuse and mood and anxiety disorders that arise independently of substance abuse and withdrawal are some of the most common psychiatric disorders in the United States, according to an article in the August issue of The Archives of General Psychiatry, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

Genetic discovery could dramatically reduce need for liver transplants in children
A new study published in the Journal of Clinical Investigation opens the door to the possibility of new treatments for children who suffer from biliary atresia, a deadly disease of infancy and the most common reason for liver transplantation in children.

Physicists discover dramatic difference in behavior of matter versus antimatter
The BaBar experiment at SLAC, a DOE laboratory operated by Stanford, submitted exciting new results demonstrating a dramatic difference in the behavior of matter and antimatter to Physical Review Letters.

Plant pathologists meeting in Anaheim, CA to discuss agricultural security, food safety, and more
Plant pathologists (plant disease experts) from around the world are meeting in Anaheim, CA for the 2004 Annual Meeting of The American Phytopathological Society (APS) that runs through August 4.

Malignant cancer cells generate mice through cloning
Nature can reset the clock in certain types of cancer and reverse many of the elements responsible for causing malignancy, reports a research team led by Whitehead Institute Member Rudolf Jaenisch, in collaboration with Lynda Chin from Dana Farber Cancer Institute.

How strongly does the sun influence the global climate?
Researchers at the MPS have shown that the Sun can be responsible for, at most, only a small part of the warming over the last 20-30 years.

Adherence to treatment guidelines improves early breast cancer survival
The first study to compare survival between women with breast cancer whose treatment was based on consensus guidelines and those whose treatment was not shows that adhering to established guidelines improves survival and reduces the risk of recurrence.

Leptin has layers of control
Leptin is produced in fat cells and controls appetite by regulating the production of several small proteins called neuropeptides.

Wasting away in muscle-ville
Loss of skeletal muscle tissue, termed cachexia, occurs in over half of cancer patients and, rather than tumor burden, is the direct cause of nearly one-third of cancer deaths.

Dr. Brenda Milner promoted to Companion of the Order of Canada
On July 29, 2004, Her Excellency the Right Honourable Adrienne Clarkson, Governor General of Canada, announced 79 new appointments to the Order of Canada.

Jumping gene plays pivotal role in reproduction
A mutation in a retroposed gene (a gene that has duplicated itself and jumped to a new position in the genome) called mUtp14b can cause infertility, said a Baylor College of Medicine researcher in a report in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Wheelchairs biomechanics, prosthetic development
The current issue of the Journal of Rehabilitation Research and Development (JRRD) focuses on wheelchair innovations, from the biomechanics of wheelchair design to wheelchair ramp design.

Exposure to influenza during pregnancy may increase risk of schizophrenia in offspring
A new study published today in the JAMA publication, Archives of General Psychiatry, indicates that prenatal exposure to influenza may increase the risk for development of schizophrenia years later.

Diffusion tensor MRI better than T2-weighted for evaluating diseased brain tissue in MS patients
Areas of abnormal white matter in the brains of multiple sclerosis (MS) patients appear much larger on diffusion tensor MRI than on T2-weighted MRI, a finding which could impact therapy options, according to a new study by researchers from Duke University Medical Center in Durham, NC.

Lung function worsens for some children with mild and moderate asthma
One quarter of children in a long-term study of mild to moderate asthma suffered a significant loss of lung function over four to six years.

New research explains lag in onset of common type of vertigo
Scientists may have pinpointed a microscopic reason why people suffering from the most common type of vertigo experience a distinct time lag between a rapid head motion and the onset of dizziness.

Virginia Tech's smelly 'corpse plant' due to bloom Aug. 4
The smelly plant is rare because it puts forth one blossom every four to 10 years.

Stroking up cellular therapy
Stroke is the second largest cause of death worldwide and the leading cause of long-term neurological disability.

Annals of Internal Medicine, tip sheet, August 3, 2004
The topics covered by the American College of Physicians tip sheet for August 3, 2004 include: elderly benefit from early, aggressive management of C.A.D., female physicians in academic medicine earn less than male counterparts, Netherlands study examines practice of terminal sedation in the care of dying patients, and ACP cites 8 principles to heal ethnic disparities in health care.

American Thoracic Society journal news tips for August 2004 (first issue)
ATS journal news highlights feature studies showing that: a diet high in fiber from fruit and soy foods can reduce the incidence of phlegm production; the use of a rapid new molecular technique has allowed researchers to identify low dose tuberculosis in those with limited contact with a confirmed case; and an important bacterial cause of exacerbations is present in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease patients than is apparent from a sputum culture.

Retreating glaciers spur Alaskan earthquakes
In a new study, NASA and United States Geological Survey (USGS) scientists found that retreating glaciers in southern Alaska may be opening the way for future earthquakes.

Landmark survey reports on the prevalence of personality disorders in the United States
An estimated 30.8 million American adults (14.8 percent) meet standard diagnostic criteria for at least one personality disorder as defined in the American Psychiatric Association's DSM-IV, according to the results of the 2001-2002 National Epidemiologic Survey on Alcohol and Related Conditions (NESARC).

$12 million grant to improvement transfusion safety in Africa awarded to Emory, AABB, and Red Cross
Transfusion medicine experts at Emory University, the American Association of Blood Banks and the American Red Cross will use a new $12 million grant from the President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief to improve the safety of blood transfusion in Kenya, South Africa, Mozambique and Guyana.

Wolf reintroduction reshapes Yellowstone ecology
The 1995 reintroduction of wolves in the northern range of Yellowstone National Park has led to increased growth of willow and cottonwood in the park by causing fear responses in elk and other ungulates, according to William J.

'Smart gene therapy' protects against damage from heart attack
Early intervention with a novel kind of

Asymmetric feature shows puzzling face for superconductivity
The weird behavior of electrons tunneling across an atomically flat interface within a cuprate superconductor has defied explanation by theories of high-temperature superconductivity.

Adolescents hospitalized for psychiatric disorders experience more emotional distress in adulthood
Adolescents hospitalized for psychiatric disorders are more likely to report higher levels of emotional distress as adults, and are less likely to graduate from high school and complete college or graduate school, according to an article in the August issue of The Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine, a theme issue on mental health and one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

Two enzymes key to calorie-burning, Brown research shows
A Brown-led research team has discovered a pair of universal switches in the brain that tell the body to stop eating - and start burning calories.

MSU group reviews Berkeley venture into brave new science funding world
When a big corporation acquired the research enterprise of an entire California university science department, it hoped it was sowing a bounty of discovery and profit. receives top honors has been awarded top honors in the Spring 2004 World Wide Web Health Awards contest.

FDA approves EPZICOM
EPZICOMTM, a new product combining two HIV medicines into one tablet dosed once a day (QD) with no food or fluid requirements, was cleared for prescription use today by the U.S.

From science fiction to reality: Nanomedicine brings fresh hope to the medical world
Emerging nanomedicine technologies could dramatically transform medical science as we know it today with their potential to address unmet medical needs and provide targeted therapy.

Johns Hopkins launches pilot study of a free home test kit for sexually transmitted diseases
Researchers at Johns Hopkins have launched the first government-sponsored study to measure the effectiveness of a Web- and community-based home test kit for common sexually transmitted diseases, such as Chlamydia and gonorrhea.

Proportion of Tennessee children using antipsychotic medications up significantly
The proportion of children and adolescents in Tennessee taking antipsychotic medications nearly doubled between 1996 and 2001, with the largest increase in the use of antipsychotics to treat attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, conduct disorder, and affective disorders, according to an article in the August issue of The Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine, a theme issue on pediatric mental health and one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

Antipsychotic drug prescriptions nearly double for kids with ADHD
Prescriptions for atypical antipsychotic drugs for children with ADHD nearly doubled between 1996 and 2001; drugs not proven affective, side affects not well known.

Study reports prevalence and co-occurrence of alcohol, drug, mood and anxiety disorders
An estimated 17.6 million American adults (8.5 percent) meet standard diagnostic criteria for an alcohol use disorder* and approximately 4.2 million (2 percent) meet criteria for a drug use disorder.

Family meals appear to be associated with adolescent's well-being
A Minnesota survey suggests that eating family meals may be associated with improved health and well-being in adolescents, according to an article in the August issue of The Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine, a theme issue on mental health and one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

UCSB professor and director receives two national awards
Two national awards are being presented this summer to Jim Reichman, director of the National Center for Ecological Analysis and Synthesis (NCEAS), based at the University of California, Santa Barbara, where he is also a professor in the Department of Ecology, Evolution and Marine Biology.

Scientists' showdown with soil moisture at the O.K. corral
Tombstone, Ariz., is a dusty place known for Wyatt Earp's famous 1881

Mount Sinai nursing leader awarded national fellowship
Kathleen Capitulo, DNSc, RN, FACCE, Director of Maternal Child Health, Patient Education, and Nursing Research at Mount Sinai Medical Center, has been selected as a Robert Wood Johnson Executive Nurse Fellow.

New technique helps scientists reveal interactions between genes and drugs
Scientists have developed a new screening technique to help them look for genes that change patients' responses to cancer drugs and other medications.

UCLA study discovers adult stem cells migrate to lung and contribute to pulmonary fibrosis
UCLA researchers for the first time identified and then stopped a type of adult stem cell from migrating to the lung and contributing to pulmonary fibrosis in an animal model.

Levels of certain hormones may be increased by stress
Higher levels of certain hormones may be associated with stress, and can influence a person's ability to cope with the negative effects of stress, according to an article in the August issue of The Archives of General Psychiatry, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

Modern heart devices can be safely used during magnetic resonance imaging scans, new study shows
In animal and laboratory studies, scientists at Johns Hopkins have shown that modern, implanted heart assist devices - such as pacemakers and defibrillators - can be safe for use in magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) machines, a diagnostic and imaging tool long ruled potentially unsafe and off-limits for more than 2 million Americans who currently have a surgically implanted cardiac device.

Matter-antimatter: Discovered new, striking difference
If we can look at stars, planets and all living beings in the Universe, as well as ourselves, is because, as theoretical physicists suggest, after the primordial cosmic explosion, the

Involvement in bullying linked with poor psychosocial adjustment
Being a bully or victim of bullying was consistently associated with poor psychosocial adjustment for students from 25 countries, according to an article in the August issue of The Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine, a theme issue on mental health and one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

UCI study finds kidney disease treatment also reduces related cardiovascular ailments
Cardiovascular ailments related to kidney diseases possibly can be avoided by blocking a newly identified enzyme that, in excess amounts, raises blood cholesterol levels and promotes arteriosclerosis, according to a UC Irvine College of Medicine study.

New diagnostic technology helps justify earlier cataract surgery
Wavefront disgnostics corroborate patient cataract vision comlaints not demonstratable by current tests.

Many adolescent girls experience headache, stomachache, back pain and fatigue
Complaints of headache, stomachache, back pain and morning fatigue are common among United States adolescent girls, according to an article in the August issue of The Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine, a theme issue on mental health and one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

Pocket gophers serve as 'ecosystem engineers'
Love them or hate them, pocket gophers have an important effect on the soil and plants where they live.

Achieving 'adulthood' is more elusive; transition to adulthood occurring at a later age
Today, adulthood no longer begins when adolescence ends. In the bridge to adulthood, also referred to as early adulthood, many more young people are caught between the demands of employment (e.g., the need to learn advanced job skills) and economic dependence on their family to support them during this transition.

Another key for the p53 door
Researchers at the Uppsala Branch of the Ludwig Institute for Cancer Research have discovered that the transcription factor Yin Yang 1 (YY1) is a novel regulator of the p53 tumor suppressor, making YY1 a novel target for cancer therapy.

Helping HIV-affected families to cope benefits their children and saves taxpayers money
UCLA AIDS Institute scientists found that coping programs for adolescent children of HIV-infected parents help teens develop into productive young adults while saving taxpayers significant expenses in government services.

How well informed are volunteers giving 'informed consent'?
Pregnant women may be volunteering to participate in HIV research without fully understanding the benefits or consequences, according to a study published today in BMC Medicine.

New light on how metals change shape at the nanoscale
University of Pittsburgh scientists, working at the National Center for Electron Microscopy at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, have found that the prominent method of deformation in nanocrystalline metals is not dislocation but sliding of grain boundaries past one another, allowing the grains to rotate and fit together in new ways.

ASCO releases new technology assessment
A new technology assessment from the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) states that the use of chemotherapy sensitivity and resistance assays (CSRAs) to select chemotherapeutic agents for cancer patients should not be undertaken outside of the clinical trial setting.

Being overweight when entering kindergarten linked to behavior problems in girls
Overweight is associated with behavior problems among girls entering kindergarten, but not boys, according to an article in the August issue of The Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine, a theme issue on mental health and one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

Science more creative and less 'true' than many believe, educator says
Science is not just evidence, but intuition, not just procedures, but creativity.

Study shows impact of emotionally healthy fathers when mothers' poor mental health affects children
A new Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center study points to the important role fathers play in their children's emotional and behavioral health.

Study highlights long-term survival & side effect issues of adjuvant breast cancer therapy
Data published today in JCO shows that two chemotherapy regimens using different doses of ELLENCE are associated with lower risk of heart damage in women with breast cancer. 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