Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

September 16, 2004
Hib infections on the rise in adults despite child vaccination programme
Cases of the Hib infection (haemophilus influenzae type b) among children and adults have risen in recent years, despite a vaccination programme which initially proved successful, say researchers in this week's BMJ.

Cancer drug shows promise against lupus
A drug now used to treat a type of cancer appears to be very effective at treating lupus, with just one injection easing symptoms in several patients for a year or more.

Washington University in St. Louis leads group studying aging process
A research team of biologists and engineers led by faculty at Washington University in St.

Poverty not strongly linked to winter deaths in the elderly
Poverty is not strongly linked to winter deaths in elderly British people, finds new research in this week's BMJ.

Consortium identifies novel potential therapeutic targets for spinal cord repair
The Christopher Reeve Paralysis Foundation (CRPF) announced today that its Research Consortium on Spinal Cord Injury published the results of a pioneering study that used microarray technology to look at changes in gene expression after contusion injury in the adult rat spinal cord.

UMaine shares ice core technology with China
In an ongoing collaboration between the University of Maine's Climate Change Institute (CCI) and Chinese scientists, UMaine has loaned an important ice core research instrument to the Cold and Arid Regions Environment and Engineering Research Institute of the Chinese Academy of Science in Lanzhou in central China.

Information system to help scientists analyze mechanisms of social behavior
With a $5 million, five-year grant from the National Science Foundation, the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign will create BeeSpace, a system to help scientists analyze all sources of information relevant to the mechanisms of social behavior.

US investment firm gives away Rhode Island-sized lands in Chile
Goldman Sachs has announced the unprecedented gift of a sprawling wilderness in Chile to the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS).

USC study links historical increases in life span to lower childhood exposure to infection
Starting in the mid-1850s, humans began living longer due, researchers believe, to improvements in living conditions, nutrition, income levels and medicine.

Massage, whirl pools help nursing home residents with pain
Nursing home companies have banded together in an effort to better manage their residents' pain.

New sign language suggests children create language's fundamentals through learning
At a school in Managua, Nicaragua, deaf children are speaking a new language entirely their own, which nonetheless has remarkable similarities to the world's other languages.

Past Antarctic ice sheet development linked to ocean temperatures and carbon dioxide
New research published in the September 17 issue of the journal Science sheds light on the evolution of Earth's climate system by identifying changes in temperature, ocean circulation, and global carbon cycling associated with the rapid growth of Antarctic ice sheets approximately 14 million years ago.

Proving that shape-shifting robots can get a move on
It started with tennis balls. As a former collegiate tennis player, Daniela Rus habitually rolls two tennis balls around in her hand as she paces her office.

The American Phytopathological Society announces 2004 awards
The American Phytopathological Society (APS) is pleased to announce its 2004 award recipients.

Joslin researchers clarify mechanisms for beta-cell formation
A new study by researchers at Joslin Diabetes Center sheds light on the key mechanisms by which new pancreatic beta cells normally form in response to insulin resistance.

US soft drink consumption grew 135% since 1977, boosting obesity
One of the simpler ways to curtail the obesity epidemic could be to cut the volume of sweetened soft drinks and fruit drinks Americans are increasingly consuming, authors of new study say.

New grant addresses minority nurse shortage
Faculty in the department of nursing at Temple University's College of Health Professions now have a plan in place to reduce the nurse shortage by increasing the number of African Americans and Hispanics entering into the profession.

Coronary angioplasty soon after medical therapy could be best treatment for heart-attack patients
Results of a randomised trial in this week's issue of The Lancet suggest that a more aggressive approach involving coronary angioplasty soon after anti-clotting medical therapy is safe and could offer a better prognosis than more conservative treatment for patients who have had heart attack.

Popular Science announces Third Annual 'Brilliant 10'
Popular Science magazine's annual roundup of ten exceptional young scientists who are gaining recognition among their peers yet remain virtually unknown to the public.

Glass research earns Lehigh a coveted NSF award
The new IMI, a collaboration between Lehigh and Penn State University, will bring together scientists and engineers from around the world to find new uses for glass and to arrest the slide of research in the field.

US child health worse than other industrialized countries
According to new research from a Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health researcher, the health of U.S. children is worse in virtually all categories when compared to children in other industrialized countries.

A bacterial cause of Crohn's disease?
A study in this week's issue of The Lancet suggests that Crohn's disease may be caused by Mycobacterium avium subspecies paratuberculosis (MAP), the same bacterium that causes a similar intestinal disorder (known as Paratuberculosis or Johne's disease) in cattle, sheep, and goats.

K-State, other universities to study how climate affects plant evolution
Kansas State University is one of several universities that will share an estimated $5 million federal grant to study how plants respond to environmental changes and how the genetic pathways underlying their responses evolve in different climates.

A traveling-wave engine to power deep space travel
A University of California scientist working at Los Alamos National Laboratory and researchers from Northrop Grumman Space Technology have developed a novel method for generating electrical power for deep-space travel using sound waves.

Two studies in Science point to new evidence in asthma development
Researchers at Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center point to new evidence in asthma development.

New way to protect brain from stroke damage
Research links stroke damage to a rise in brain acidity following the oxygen depletion characteristic of the condition.

National Academies news: Communication Awards winners announced
The National Academies today announced the recipients of its 2004 National Academies Communication Awards.

Neutron physics instrument may unlock mysteries of universe
Fundamental questions that particle physicists have pondered for decades might be answered when a $9.2 million neutron physics beam line is built at the Department of Energy's Spallation Neutron Source on Chestnut Ridge.

Humans not irrational, just wary
Psychologists often conclude from research subjects' behavior in psychological experiments that humans are irrational.

NSF announces six 'FIBR' awards to tackle some of biology's most challenging questions
How exactly do animals move? How do organisms adapt to newly acquired genes?

What are you on? - three out of five Israeli clinicians still using placebos
Three out of five Israeli clinicians report using placebos - inactive treatments or drugs - in treating patients, despite the medical profession's official disapproval of their use, say the authors of a BMJ Online First paper this week.

Doubtful post-mortem evidence may lead to miscarraiges of justice
The science of measuring drug levels in the blood after death is far from robust and based on flawed evidence- leading to likely miscarraiges of justice and conspiracy theories, say forensic scientists in this week's BMJ.

Experts warn of more climate shocks from global warming at hill-sponsored briefing
Health/Heat Waves/Hurricanes/Global Warming: Experts warn there may be more climate

Tips from the Journals of the American Society for Microbiology
This issue includes: Combination of cranberry and oregano extracts may inhibit bacteria in meat and fish; bacteria in dental plaque of children may predict gum disease as adult; refrigerating milk harms cheese-making bacteria.

$4.9 million for Hartford Doctoral Fellows program in geriatric social work
A $4.89 million five-year grant from The John A. Hartford Foundation of New York City to The Gerontological Society of America (GSA) will continue and significantly expand the Hartford Doctoral Fellows program.

Food study finds diets get healthier over time
Adults eat around twice the amount of fruit and vegetables and less fat and sugar than they did as children, a new study by UK researchers suggests, although many perceive there are still many barriers to healthy eating.

Cockroach-like robot leads new research effort
RHex, a robot that scampers like a cockroach, is the center of a new effort to understand how animals move without falling over.

MayoClinic.com recognized in 2004 WebAward competition
MayoClinic.com has been awarded an Outstanding Web site WebAward in the 2004 WebAward Competition.

Mayo Clinic researchers define link between eosinophils and asthma
Mayo Clinic researchers have used a comparative genomic strategy to demonstrate a causative link between eosinophils, a rare type of white blood cell, and asthma.

Folic acid vitamin use by women reaches all-time high, March of Dimes survey finds
A record 40 percent of American women of childbearing age are taking a daily multivitamin containing folic acid, the highest level since the March of Dimes began surveying women, according to a report published today in Morbidity & Mortality Weekly Report.

Study highlights potential link between schizophrenia and suicide in China
The potential relationship of two important public health problems for China--schizophrenia and suicide--is highlighted by an epidemiological study in this week's issue of The Lancet.
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