Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

September 29, 2004
New surface chemistry may extend life of technology for making transistors
Researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have developed a technique that uses surface chemistry to make tinier and more effective p-n junctions in silicon-based semiconductors.

LA BioMed research briefs
This release contains research briefs from the current issue of LA BioMed.

ESO views of Earth-approaching asteroid Toutatis
Several photos of asteroid Toutatis that passes the Earth today have been obtained this morning from the ESO observatories at La Silla and Paranal (Chile).

Innovative young Yale engineers selected for NAE's 2004 U.S. Frontiers of Engineering symposium
Two Yale engineers are among 86 of the nation's brightest young engineers selected to participate in the National Academy of Engineering's (NAE) 10th annual Frontiers of Engineering symposium.

Alzheimer's disease is not accelerated aging
Certain brain changes that are common in normal aging are not the beginnings of Alzheimer's disease.

Yale researcher receives Sixth Annual Novartis Award in diabetes
Yale researcher Robert S. Sherwin, the C.N.H. Long Professor of Internal Medicine at Yale School of Medicine, is one of four physician-scientists recognized by Novartis Pharmaceuticals for significant and innovative research, clinical practice advances and education efforts in diabetes.

Caffeine withdrawal recognized as a disorder
If you missed your morning coffee and now you have a headache and difficulty concentrating, you might be able to blame it on caffeine withdrawal.

Award winning researchers reveal potential new role for Glivec
Imatinib - or Glivec as it also known - looks as if it may become an effective treatment for yet another type of cancer the EORTC-NCI-AACR cancer conference will hear on Wednesday (29 September).

Pacific Northwest team unveils largest virus proteome to date
Scientists have discovered a record number of proteins for one of the largest and most complex viruses, the highly infectious and stealthy human cytomegalovirus, a team from Pacific Northwest National Laboratory and Oregon Health & Science University reported today in the October Journal of Virology.

New Arizona State center brings science to policy on issues of water resources and urban growth
A new $6.9-million center at Arizona State University will study the decision processes used to plan and manage water resources and desert city growth.

National Science Foundation awards $9.7 million to Pittsburgh Supercomputing Center for Cray system
The U.S. academic community will soon have access to a new supercomputer modeled on the highest-performance systems currently being built in the United States, through a $9.7 million award to the Pittsburgh Supercomputing Center (PSC) announced today by the National Science Foundation (NSF).

Genetic differences might help distinguish thyroid cancers
Two types of thyroid cancer that are closely related and sometimes difficult to distinguish can be readily identified by differences in only a few genes, new research shows.

History of smoking significantly reduces survival in head and neck cancer patients
A new study shows that a history of smoking affects survival in patients with cancer of the head and neck.

Laser wakefield acceleration: Channeling the best beams ever
Researchers at the Department of Energy's Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory have taken a giant step toward realizing the promise of laser wakefield acceleration, by guiding and controlling extremely intense laser beams over greater distances than ever before to produce high-quality, energetic electron beams.

AAAS US Presidential Candidates' Forum
Stem cell research, climate change and many other scientific matters are currently attracting significant interest from both candidates for the U.S. presidency and the general public as science and technology issues increasingly motivate major policy decisions.

News tips from the Journal of Neuroscience
This week's issue of the Journal of Neuroscience includes: Septal GABAergic neurons and hippocampal theta; and A shift in tonic inhibition with chronic seizures.

Global climate hot topic for AAAS conference in Anchorage, AK
When it comes to global climate change, effects of the phenomenon are seen in Arctic regions first.

DNA lends scientists a hand, revealing new chemical reactions
Scientists at Harvard University have developed a powerful way of mining the chemical universe for new reactions by piggybacking collections of different small organic molecules onto short strands of DNA, which then gives the reactants the opportunity to react by zipping together.

'Most recent common ancestor' of all living humans surprisingly recent
In this week's issue of Nature, a Yale mathematician presents models showing that the most recent person who was a direct ancestor of all humans currently alive may have lived just a few thousand years ago.

Millions of Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders at increased risk for type 2 diabetes
About 40 percent of adults ages 40 to 74 - or 41 million people -have pre-diabetes, a condition that raises a person's risk for developing type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and stroke.

Half-million dollar landmark achieved for the Methuselah Mouse Prize
The Methuselah Foundation, creators of the Methuselah Mouse Prize, the world's first scientific prize for research on extending longevity, today announced that it has secured a total of $500,000 in funding commitments with the long term support commitment from an anonymous supporter making his donation in the name of the X PRIZE Foundation, the multi-million-dollar bounty which has successfully encouraged the development of private passenger space travel.

St. Petersburg/New Haven Partnership for HIV/AIDS Care, Treatment and Support launched
The St. Petersburg/New Haven Partnership for HIV/AIDS Care, Treatment and Support was launched on September 20.

Unrecognized iron deficiency can impair immunity in older women
Iron deficiency, which can masquerade as routine old age symptoms, was found to impair measures of immunity from 28 to 50 percent in a group of seemingly healthy, well-nourished, homebound, older women, age 60 and above, in a Penn State study.

Yale researchers discover VEGF molecule contributes to the development of asthma
In a whole new approach to asthma research, scientists at Yale have discovered that a molecule called Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor (VEGF) likely plays an important role in the development of the disease and raises the possibility of new asthma drugs that block VEGF receptors and signaling pathways.

The sweetest spot in your home theater
A new upgrade for home theater enthusiasts provides as many as eight listeners with the same surroundsound experience.

Studies strengthen kidney and heart disease link
A pair of new epidemiology studies confirms that chronic kidney disease independently increases the risk of developing cardiovascular disease, even among people with early kidney disease and after considering other risk factors such as diabetes, hypertension and high cholesterol.

Brain-scanning life's memories yields new insights
Neuroscientists at Duke University have figured out how to study with rigorous experimental control how the brain recalls autobiographical memories -- the memories of a person's past experiences.

Plants will not save us from greenhouse gases
According to researchers at McGill University, we have been overestimating the ability of plants to counteract the greenhouse effect.

Bacteria's 'glue valve' surprises scientists
Researchers at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis are working to better understand how Haemophilus influenza bacteria interacts with host cells.

Injuries are the fourth leading cause of death in the Philippines
New research from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and the University of the Philippines found that while the overall death rate in the Philippines has declined in the last 35 years, deaths from injuries increased 196 percent.

New protocols in kidney- pancreas transplantation produces better results for patients
Due to refined surgical techniques and advances in anti-rejection therapy, transplant surgeons at the University of Pittsburgh's Thomas E.

New study indicates arsenic could be suitable as first-line treatment in type of leukaemia
The EORTC-NCI-AACR conference will hear (Wednesday 29 September) that arsenic trioxide - a highly poisonous substance best known as an effective weed killer or pesticide and notorious for being a favourite 'weapon' of choice in murder mystery novels - is being re-invented as a treatment for a rare type of leukaemia.

Scientists tame electron beams, bringing 'table top' particle accelerators a step closer
Scientists from the UK and the USA have successfully demonstrated a new technique that could help to shrink the size and cost of future particle accelerators for fundamental physics experiments and applications in materials and biomedicine.

Safety of isoflavones in dietary supplements targeted by Illinois initiative
A multidisciplinary team of scientists at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign is embarking on a comprehensive five-year study of the effects of soy isoflavones found in dietary supplements on various body tissues.

Adverse event reporting system helps curb severe anemia from epoetin use
Cooperation among international adverse event reporting agencies has led to an 83 percent decline in a rare, potentially life-threatening form of anemia associated with recombinant human erythropoietin (epoetin), a widely used product for anemia that occurs among cancer patients or persons undergoing dialysis.

Phase II trials of second-generation antisense cancer drug planned following successful early study
Phase II trials of the first second-generation antisense cancer drug to be used in patients are soon to be underway in the wake of a successful Phase I study, delegates at EORTC-NCI-AACR conference in Geneva will hear Wednesday (29 September).

Experts on global HIV/AIDS to gather in Indy Oct. 31
Conference at Indiana University School of Medicine will convene some of the world's chief experts on medical, ethical, political and economics issues related to HIV/AIDS.

Researchers identify protein promoting vascular tumor growth
Researchers have discovered a new mechanism responsible for the growth of blood vessel tumors that can cause facial deformities in infants and young children, paving the way for an antibody-based treatment to remove cells that fuel the tumors' growth.

Psychoanalysts to convene Winter 2005 Meeting
The Winter 2005 Meeting of the American Psychoanalytic Association (APsaA) will be held at the Waldorf=Astoria Hotel, New York City from Wednesday, January 19 through Sunday, January 23, 2005.

Cardiac arrest may hinder ability to learn certain tasks
A new study in mice suggests that survivors of severe heart attacks may have a difficult time with some learning tasks.

The UK's productivity gap: The latest evidence from economic research
Productivity is the key indicator of economic health - over the long haul, real income growth and hence living standards must follow the growth of labour productivity.

E-learning attracts the 'usual suspects'
Despite Government efforts to promote 'lifelong learning' and a more equitable and inclusive 'learning society' there is little special or new about adult learning in the digital age, according to research at Cardiff University.

Sandia creates motion detector 1,000 times more sensitive than any known
A new class of very small handheld devices can detect motion a thousand times more subtly than any tool known.

Trial shows which brain cancer patients benefit from temozolomide
The EORTC-NCI-AACR conference will hear today (Wednesday 29 September) which patients with the deadly form of brain tumours called glioblastomas are likely to live longer if they are treated with temozolomide, and which patients are likely to get only marginal, if any, benefit.

New research shows plants can shuffle and paste gene pieces to generate genetic diversity
A researcher at the University of Georgia has discovered a new way that genetic entities called transposable elements (TEs) can promote evolutionary change in plants.

Cancer vaccine based on pathogenic listeria bacteria shows promise targeting metastases
Based on the work of UC Berkeley microbiologist Dan Portnoy, a San Francisco area biotech firm has developed a promising cancer vaccine using disabled listeria bacteria.

New molecular link key to cellular proteins involved in cancer progression, other diseases
A study led by University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill scientists has discovered the molecular mechanism used by cellular proteins that are known to be involved in cell development and progression of diseases including cancer.

Out of Africa: Scientists find earliest evidence yet of human presence in Northeast Asia
Early humans lived in northern China about 1.66 million years ago, according to a research reported in the journal Nature this week.

Control of molecular switches increased by tailored intermolecular interactions
A means to stabilize molecular switches based on chemical interactions with surrounding molecules has been developed at by a research team at Penn State.

Pack-MULEs are toting a new look at plant evolution
An article in this week's Nature elevates a little-considered group of elements in the genome sequence to potentially major players in the process of evolution.

UT Southwestern biochemist honored with NIH Director's Pioneer Award
Dr. Steven McKnight, chairman of biochemistry at UT Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas, is the recipient of a National Institutes of Health Director's Pioneer Award, a new initiative designed to support exceptionally creative investigators.
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