Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

January 17, 2005
Individualized medicine emerging from gene-environment studies
New understanding of the dynamic interplay between genes and environment, made possible by technologies arising from the Human Genome Project, helps support the individualization of medicine and makes focusing on racial or ethnic group differences in disease less relevant, say Penn State researchers.

New genetic mutation linked to Parkinson's disease
Tatiana Foroud, Ph.D., of the Indiana University School of Medicine, principal investigator of the multi-site Parkinson Study Group study says that a mutation in a recently discovered Parkinson's disease gene (LRRK2) is the most common genetic cause of inherited forms of the disease.

Grapefruit juice and medication can be a dangerous mix
Grapefruit juice can be deadly for people on certain medications, nurse researchers remind everyone who takes medicine and enjoys grapefruit juice.

American Thoracic Society Journal news tips for January 2005 (second issue)
Newsworthy highlights include studies showing that: total maternal vitamin C intake during pregnancy was associated with wheeze during the infant's second year; in a study of 2,760 asthma patients, inhaled corticosteroid combined with a long-acting beta2-agonist reduced exacerbation rates by 45 percent, improved symptom control, and resulted in better lung function; and U.S.-born Mexican Americans have a higher prevalence of asthma than do Mexican Americans born in Mexico.

Study identifies the most common genetic cause of Parkinson's disease
Researchers have found that a single mutation in a recently discovered Parkinson's disease gene is responsible for 5 percent of inherited Parkinson's disease cases.

Student architect designs disaster relief in a box
When it comes to disaster relief, University of Toronto master of architecture student Michael Donaldson is thinking inside the box.

Columbia crew catches a mysterious TIGER in the Indian Ocean
An unprecedented flash observed by the space shuttle Columbia crew in 2003 over the Indian Ocean may be a new type of transient luminous event, like lightning sprites, but one that is not necessarily caused by a thunderstorm.

View from ten kilometres high
30 images from ESA's Huygens probe are available
Hebrew University professor wins Wolf Prize in Medicine for work in cancer research
Alexander Levitzki, the Wolfson Famly Professor of Biochemistry at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, has been named as one of the three winners of the 2005 Wolf Prize in Medicine.

Scientists detect probable genetic cause of some Parkinson's disease cases
Two new studies strongly suggest that a mutation in a recently discovered gene is the most common genetic cause of Parkinson's disease identified to date.

Parkinson's disease clinical researchers invited to submit study information to new patient website
Clinical researchers seeking patient volunteers within the U.S. are invited to submit information about their clinical trial to a new patient website dedicated to Parkinson's clinical trials,
Behavior and quality of life improve for children who receive treatment for obstructive sleep apnea
Behavioral and emotional difficulties are found in children with obstructive sleep apnea, but they improve after treatment, according to a study in the January issue of Archives of Otolaryngology - Head & Neck Surgery, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

Research sheds light on how cancer cells become resistant to treatment
A new study by researchers at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center and The Johns Hopkins University provides new insight into how tumor cells can become resistant to anti-cancer therapy.

Future of clinical medicine research is at risk, warns professor
Changes to the training of junior medical doctors, combined with the increased emphasis on clinical work in the new consultant contract will damage the future of clinical research in the UK, a University of Edinburgh Professor will state in his inaugural lecture on Tuesday, 18 January, 2005.

Blood test shows promise as monitor for antiangiogenic cancer therapy
Scientists have uncovered critical information that may lead to an urgently needed method for effective monitoring of antiangiogenic cancer therapies.

A proverb a day may make you healthier
It's time to add to our store of proverbs with new phrases that teach us how to be healthier, says a University of Toronto researcher.

2005: A critical year for action towards millennium development goals
Today the UN Millennium Project will deliver its reports to the UN Secretary-General.

Ecologists see the primeval wood for the trees
Ancient woodlands in Europe may have been remarkably similar to the dark forests of ancient folklore according to a paper in Journal of Ecology by Dr Fraser Mitchell.

Jump-starting T cells in skin cancer
Advanced melanoma, the most deadly form of skin cancer, can be successfully treated in some cases by vaccinating patients with tumor proteins.

Combination therapy boosts effectiveness of telomere-directed cancer cell death
A new research study published in the January issue of Cancer Cell provides exciting new information about how to boost the effectiveness of a promising cancer treatment that targets telomeres in an attempt to interfere with the ability of a cancer cell to continuously divide.

Penn researchers add more evidence to demonstrate role of COX inhibitors in heart-disease risk
In two-related papers, researchers from the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine provide further evidence for the role of cyclooxygenases in heart-disease risk.

Cancer vaccines: A two-pronged attack?
The latest findings in cancer vaccine development suggest that cancer vaccines may have two modes of action; specific immunization and non-specific activation of immune cells paralyzed by the tumor.

Mayo Clinic recommends broadening treatment to battle recurrence of endometrial cancer
Mayo Clinic researchers studying endometrial cancer have found that patients at risk for relapse based on identified risk factors had a 46 percent probability of experiencing recurrence within five years despite treatment with state-of-the-art therapy.

Astronomy's case of the missing disks
Astronomers announced this week they have a lead in the case of the missing disks, which may account for the missing evidence of red dwarfs forming planetary systems.

Adult moms more affectionate with their infants: Study
Mothers who are more mature tend to display more affection towards their infants whereas teenage mothers often focus on instrumental behaviour - fixing their infant's clothes or their soother - finds a new study of maternal behaviour.

Genetic testing for Parkinson's disease on the horizon
Three studies published online by THE LANCET today identify a single gene mutation as the cause of around one in 25 cases of Parkinson's disease worldwide.

Making plastics from oranges
Cornell University researchers have discovered how to make plastics from citrus fruits, such as oranges, and carbon dioxide.

After tsunami, poverty eradication must top global agenda: UN agency
UN International Fund for Agricultural Development describes the impact of the tsunami on Asian development and the resulting need to redouble efforts to reach the Millennium Development Goals.

Mobile surgical units prevent delays in treating wounded combat patients in Iraq
The use of new mobile surgical teams resulted in the faster treatment of injured US Marines and Iraqi patients, according to an article in the January issue of Archives of Surgery, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

Tip sheet Annals of Internal Medicine, Jan. 18, 2005
This issue includes the following two articles: A single office-based stool blood test (FOBT) is a poor, but often used, screening test for colorectal cancer; Improving HDL cholesterol limited progression of heart disease.

Multiple therapies curb declining ability to learn with age
A new study of beagles led by researchers at the University of Toronto at Scarborough underscores the importance of using a combination of diet and behaviour therapies to curb the progressive decline in the ability to learn that occurs with advanced aging. 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