Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

November 04, 2004
Loyola warns lower temps mean greater risk of fire from space heaters
The Burn Center at Loyola University Medical Center is warning the public about the dangers of space heaters and other electrical appliances used to keep warm during winter cold snaps.

NJIT's smart gun moves closer to completion with $1.1 million grant
Scientists at New Jersey Institute of Technology (NJIT) were awarded $1.1 million by the US Department of Justice to continue testing a safer personalized weapon.

Standing up to earthquakes
From the Pacific coast to our nation's interior, more than 75 million Americans in 39 states live in towns and cities at risk for earthquake devastation.

Crucial evolutionary link points to origins of modern cells
A team of researchers at Rockefeller University and University of California, San Francisco, have discovered a possible crucial evolutionary link between the simple cells that make up bacteria and the more complex cells that comprise animal and plant cells, including those of humans.

No justification for colposcopy in screening of young women for cervical cancer
Results of a US study in this week's issue of The Lancet suggest that regular smear tests rather than colposcopy is the best way of monitoring low-grade cervical lesions among adolescents and young women.

Detrol LA combined with standard treatment for enlarged prostate is twice as effective
Combination therapy with Pfizer Inc's DETROLĀ® LA (tolterodine tartrate extended release capsules) and an alpha blocker, a standard treatment for enlarged prostate, was twice as effective in relieving overactive bladder (OAB) symptoms as the alpha blocker alone in men with both bladder obstruction and OAB, according to a study published in the October issue of the British Journal of Urology.

FDA buys technology that identifies drug toxicity to heart
Researchers have developed a new tool to assess whether a medication might be harmful to the heart.

Researchers discover transport molecule that allows boron into cells
Researchers at UT Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas have identified a protein that transports the essential nutrient boron into cells, where it is important for cell growth and bone development.

Four new vertebrate fossil finds in Ischigualasto, Argentina
Four new fossil finds collected by Earthwatch teams working with Dr.

Paleontologist snares research prize with new approach to evolutionary theory
Peter Wagner's research on the twists and turns of fossil snail shells and evolutionary theory has earned him the 2004 Charles Schuchert Award from the Paleontological Society.

Powerful 'toolkit' developed for functional profiling of yeast genes
Johns Hopkins researchers have built a powerful

'Smart' police cars focus of $1 million grant to UH
The Batmobile and KITT have nothing on the

Dopamine key to learning likes and dislikes, says Colorado U. team
For those who have wondered why they like or dislike certain things, or how they decide what to order from a menu, a team of researchers at the University of Colorado at Boulder says it's dopamine.

NIH funds seven science education partnership awards
The NIH announced today it will provide $8.1 million to fund seven Science Education Partnership Awards (SEPA).

Audio conference: Insulin resistance and polycystic ovary syndrome
On Monday, November 8, 2004, The Endocrine Society will host an audio conference on diagnosing and treating polycystic overy syndrome.

Research on fabrics and cancer-fighting foods featured at ACS meeting
Smart fabrics and cancer-fighting foods highlight the 56th Southeast Regional Meeting of the American Chemical Society in Research Triangle Park, N.C., Nov.

Vioxx should have been withdrawn 4 years ago
New research published online by The Lancet highlights how there was enough evidence 4 years ago to justify the removal of Vioxx from the pharmaceutical market.

Pitt researchers identify biomarkers of lupus which could lead to quicker and better diagnosis
University of Pittsburgh researchers have identified biomarkers that could result in earlier and more accurate diagnosis of lupus, which affects 1.5 million Americans.

UNC Lineberger researchers identify molecular markers of aging
Researchers at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center may have made a crucial discovery in the understanding of cellular aging.

Link between immune protein and longer survival in melanoma patients identified
Immune responses to prevent or delay the spread of melanoma, a deadly form of skin cancer, are more likely to prolong survival in patients if their immune cells carry a special kind of marker on the surface, according to a team of researchers at the University of Virginia Health System.

Churches nationwide issue plea for increased rates of African American organ donation
African American churches and black transplant surgeons nationwide will take part in the Linkages to Life: Organ, Tissue, and Bone Marrow Donation Awareness Program on November 14, with hopes of saving thousands of African Americans waiting for a transplant.

It's time to allow people to die at home with dignity
People with terminal conditions should be able to die at home with dignity, say researchers in this week's BMJ.

The effect of osteoporosis drugs on osteoarthritis of the knee
Researchers recently evaluated the effects of bone-strengthening drugs on knee Osteoarthritis (OA) in the Health, Aging, and Body Composition (ABC) Study.

Little benefit from comprehensive assessment of older people in general practice
Results of the largest study to date to identify the best ways to assess and treat elderly patients is published in this week's issue of The Lancet.

MIT team lets one airplane speak to another in English
Aeronautics researchers at MIT have developed an aircraft guidance system that allows a pilot in one plane to guide a separate, pilotless airplane by speaking commands in English.

Scientists pinpoint flaw, offer new promise for stroke treatment
The best treatment doctors currently have for stroke, tPA, can accelerate the death of brain cells in addition to dissolving blood clots, researchers report.

Professor: Military experience affects adolescents' self-esteem
Timothy J. Owens, a Purdue University associate professor of sociology who studies self-concept and identity, says it is too early to tell how the self-esteem of the young men and women serving in today's military will be shaped by their experiences, and he cautions others to remember how the Vietnam War affected the self-esteem of some adolescent males who were involved.

The anti-arthritic effects of bee venom
Researchers in South Korea recently conducted an investigation into the molecular mechanisms behind bee venom's therapeutic impact on Rheumatoid Arthritis.

Brain regions activated by food craving overlap with areas implicated in drug craving
Researchers at the Monell Chemical Senses Center and the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine used fMRI to reveal that food cravings activate brain areas related to emotion, memory and reward - areas also activated during drug-craving studies.

McMaster named Canadian Research University of the Year
McMaster University has earned the designation Research University of the Year based on its ability to attract and capitalize on research income.

White physicians slower to prescribe HIV medications for African-Americans than for whites
A new UCLA study shows that African-American HIV patients treated by white doctors receive life-saving HIV medication less than those who have an African-American doctor.The clinical implications of the findings are that delay in effective treatment could result in more deaths for African-American patients.

Tiny paddle oscillator senses the mass of a virus
Using a device only six millionths of a meter long, researchers at Cornell University have been able to detect the presence of as few as a half-dozen viruses, and they say the device is sensitive enough to notice just one.

Ernest Mancini to receive AGI's distinguished Ian Campbell Award
The 2004 Ian Campbell Award, the American Geological Institute's most distinguished award, is to be presented to Dr.

Women's reproductive factors and the risk of rheumatoid arthritis
A new study explores the contribution of hormonal factors occurring prior to the onset of RA and the impact of postmenopausal hormone replacement therapy on the risk of disease.

Mentally ill offender treatment and crime reduction act becomes law
The Mentally Ill Offender Treatment and Crime Reduction Act (S.

Body shaving and turf burns spread infection in college football team
Turf burns and cosmetic body shaving were responsible for the spread of a bacterial skin infection among players on a college football team, according to an article in the November 15 issue of Clinical Infectious Diseases, now available online.

NJIT announces partnership for high altitude airship commercialization
New Jersey Institute of Technology (NJIT) announced today the formation of a strategic partnership between researchers at the university and Auxilia Inc., Albany, NY.

Cell enzyme may help suppress cancer development
A new study shows that an enzyme that normally alters the activity of other protein molecules in cells may also help prevent cancer.

$2.8 million public-private partnership to examine how surroundings can encourage active lifestyles
A new $2.8 million effort, partnering public and private funding agencies, will examine how better community design encourages people to be more physically active in their daily lives.

Britain should adopt universal hepatitis B immunisation
Britain should adopt universal hepatitis B immunisation, says a senior doctor in this week's BMJ.

Norman D. Newell to receive Legendary Geoscientist Award
Norman D. Newell, former professor at the University of Kansas, University of Wisconsin, and Columbia University and Emeritus Curator for the American Museum of Natural History in New York, will receive the Legendary Geoscientist Award of the American Geological Institute (AGI) and AGI Foundation during the American Geological Institute Past Presidents Dinner on Sunday, November 7 in Denver.

Study casts doubt over widely prescribed beta blocker
Results of a study in this week's issue of The Lancet suggest that atenolol--one of the most widely prescribed beta-blockers for reducing blood pressure--may not be effective in reducing heart attacks or death from cardiovascular causes.

AGI announces recipients of two distinguished service awards
The American Geological Institute (AGI) proudly announces the winners of two distinguished AGI awards; the William B.

Problem gambling is a serious health issue
Problem gambling is a health issue that needs to be taken seriously by all within the medical profession, argues a researcher in this week's BMJ.

Indiana University one of the nation's 'best places to work,' scientists say
Indiana University and Purdue University are two of the nation's 10

Scientists find acid rain an unlikely ally in the battle against a greenhouse gas
Depending on how you look at it, something good can always come out of something bad.

U-M researcher examines the cell's housekeeping habits
The cells of higher organisms have an internal mechanism for chewing up and recycling parts of themselves, particularly in times of stress, like starvation and disease.

UCSF receives $21 million NIH contract for sexually transmitted infection research
The National Institutes of Health has awarded $21 million to the UCSF Women's Global Health Imperative to conduct clinical trials for new treatments as well as prevention and diagnostic products for non-HIV sexually transmitted infections (STI).

NASA & partners create new worldwide coral reef library
A NASA-funded project has created an archive of approximately 1,500 images of worldwide coral reefs.

Embark on a 'journey to better vision' at UH
There's hope for those whose poor vision prevents them from reading, driving and other taken-for-granted tasks. 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