Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

February 02, 2005
Mayo Clinic researchers create 'obedient virus'; First step to use measles virus against cancer
An international team of Mayo Clinic-led researchers is first to devise a system that consistently converts the measles virus into a therapeutic killer that hunts down and destroys cancer cells -- and cancer cells only.

Molecular biology fills gaps in knowledge of bat evolution
One in five mammals living on Earth is a bat, yet their evolutionary history is largely unknown because of a limited fossil record and conflicting or incomplete theories about their origins and divergence.

New component of the 'brakes' on nerve regeneration found
Among the principal obstacles to regenerating spinal cord and brain cells after injury is the

Lost and found: X-ray telescope locates missing matter
NASATMs Chandra X-ray Observatory has discovered two huge intergalactic clouds of diffuse hot gas.

NJIT expert recommends 16 easy, affordable ways to make homes safer for people with disabilities
Environmental psychologist Richard Olsen, PhD, a research professor at New Jersey Institute of Technology (NJIT), has developed 16 easy and affordable ways people can make their homes safer and more comfortable.

Evidence of waterfowl mediated gene-flow in aquatic invertebrates
How do aquatic invertebrates such as water fleas move between isolated waterbodies so as to colonize new habitats or maintain genetic exchange between populations?

New treatment rivals chemotherapy for lymphoma, U-M study finds
A new form of treatment for lymphoma that takes a fraction of the time of traditional chemotherapy with fewer side effects caused tumors to shrink in 95 percent of patients, a new study by researchers at the University of Michigan Comprehensive Cancer Center found.

Canadian neurologist wins highest award as American Stroke Association honors five
One of North America's foremost neurologists and stroke researchers, Vladimir Hachinski, M.D., D.Sc., professor of neurology at the University of Western Ontario, London, Ont., Canada, is the recipient of the American Stroke Association's highest honor - the Thomas Willis Award - for 2005.

The birth of galaxies and stars
Experts at Cardiff University, UK, are designing and building highly sophisticated equipment, which will travel deep into space to enable scientists to look back in time to observe the formation of galaxies and stars.

Clinical breast examination offers modest benefit to breast cancer screening program
Adding clinical breast examination to a mammography screening program provides only a modest benefit in detecting cancer, a new study shows.

New UCLA study disputes antidepressant/suicide link
Challenging recent claims linking antidepressant use to suicidal behavior, a new UCLA study shows that American suicide rates have dropped steadily since the introduction of Prozac and other serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) drugs.

NHS Trusts meeting government target on stroke units 'in name only'
A large proportion of eligible NHS hospital trusts seem to be meeting the UK government target for setting up stroke units, but in name only, suggests a national audit, published in Quality and Safety in Health Care.

Dartmouth Medical School launches partnership to enroll City College of New York graduates
Dartmouth Medical School (DMS) will initiate a partnership to expand opportunities for promising medical students from diverse backgrounds through a cooperative program with Sophie Davis School of Biomedical Education at the City College of New York (CCNY).

IDSA applauds Senate leadership for introduction of S. 3
The Infectious Diseases Society of America (IDSA) today applauded the Senate Republican leadership for putting biopreparedness at the top of its health care agenda.

New technology could make TV more exciting
Live TV outside broadcasts that combine real action and computer-generated images could become possible for the first time, thanks to camera navigation technology now under development.

New neurons born in adult rat cortex
Scientists have found newly born neurons that communicate via the chemical messenger GABA in adult rat cortex, seat of higher order

Rat whisking may provide insight into debilitating eye disorder
Physicists at the University of California, San Diego have discovered a neural circuit in rats that could provide a powerful model for understanding a neurological condition known as blepharospasm--uncontrolled eye blinking that affects 50,000 people in the U.S. and leaves some patients functionally blind.

IEEE-USA supports prolonging life of Hubble Space Telescope
NASA should explore all possible avenues toward prolonging the useful life of the Hubble Space Telescope, IEEE-USA said today in a statement to the House Science Committee.

Blacks in the South have greater risk of dying from stroke
African American men who live in southern states are at significantly higher risk of dying from stroke than African American men living elsewhere.

Marsh-dwelling mole gives new meaning to the term 'fast food'
A study published in the Feb. 3 issue of

Think fast: Reaction time and IQ may predict long life
Studies have shown that people with lower IQs tend to die at younger ages than those with higher IQs.

McGill researchers shed light on formation of carcinogen in food
A potentially carcinogenic chemical called furan has recently been found in a wide array of processed food products.

Highest average rate of US road deaths on Independence Day
More than 100 people die on US roads every day, but there is definitely a seasonal trend, with the highest average death toll on July 4, Independence Day, reveals research in Injury Prevention.

The opportunity for canalization and the evolution of genetic networks
Using a combination of mathematical and computational models, Stephen R.

Stroke patients receive better care when hospitals 'get with the guidelines'
The care of stroke patients improved dramatically over a short time when hospitals implemented

Wisconsin scientists find portal to show animals evolve
University of Wisconsin-Madison discovery provides critical evidence of how animals evolve new features to improve their chances of reproductive success and survival.

New study in JAMA details trends in diagnosis, treatment of brain tumors
A two year study involving over 560 patients with the newly-diagnosed malignant brain tumors shows that patterns of care are varied and there is a need for new, detailed clinical guidelines for management of brain tumors.

NJIT professor receives NSF CAREER award for emergency response research
David Mendonca, Ph.D., an assistant professor of information systems at New Jersey Institute of Technology (NJIT) who has worked to improve the way society responds to disasters, has received a National Science Foundation (NSF) CAREER award - the foundation's most prestigious award for new faculty members.

New study finds kelp can reduce level of hormone related to breast cancer risk
A type of vegetation that is often found washed ashore on beaches may soon emerge as a new player in the field of cancer-fighting foods.

Biodiversity hotspots identify conservation priorities
The new book Hotspots Revisited identifies 34 regions worldwide where 75 percent of the planet's most threatened mammals, birds, and amphibians survive within habitat covering just 2.3 percent of the Earth's surface (roughly equivalent to the combined areas of the five largest U.S. states).

Suffering from fatigue, abdominal discomfort or bloody diarrhea?
People living with fatigue, abdominal discomfort and bloody diarrhea caused by the chronic inflammation of ulcerative colitis may no longer need to undergo frequent and uncomfortable endoscopies, a new study shows.

NSF funds science of learning center at Dartmouth
The National Science Foundation (NSF) has awarded $21.8 million to Dartmouth College to establish the Center for Cognitive and Educational Neuroscience (CCEN).

Research using mouse models reveals a novel key player in the initiation of colon cancer
Klaus Kaestner from the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine has headed a study that identifies another molecular player influencing the initiation of colon cancers.

Inflammatory cells highly promising target in NF 1
Indiana University School of Medicine researchers are identifying drugs that can disrupt the function of mast cells and their proteins in ways that they believe will starve NF tumors.

Third of European cancer patients use complementary and alternative therapies
More than a third of cancer patients in Europe make use of complementary and alternative medicine (CAM), according to one of the largest surveys undertaken of CAM in cancer, which is published (3 February) in Annals of Oncology.

Astronomers find part of universe's missing matter
Found: 7 percent of the mass of the universe. Missing since: 10 billion years ago.

Male surgeons report highest rate of mistakes in patient care
Male surgeons report the highest rate of mistakes in patient care, reveals a study of doctors' attitudes to

MRI 'excellent choice' for overcoming challenges of diagnosing pregnant women with abdominal pain
MRI is both safe and accurate for diagnosing pregnant women with acute pain in the abdomen and pelvis, surpassing the limits of both CT and ultrasound for this purpose, according to a new study by researchers from University of North Carolina Hospitals in Chapel Hill, NC.

NASA research to aid federal invasive species council efforts
NASA recently accepted an invitation to join the National Invasive Species Council (NISC).

Smoking hurts wealth as well as health, study suggests
Maybe packs of cigarettes should come with a new warning:

Key trigger of opioid withdrawal symptoms found
Researchers have discovered an important chemical in the brain's neuronal machinery that triggers some of the withdrawal symptoms of opioid drugs like morphine and heroin.

Microsoft invests in Europe through EuroScience Initiative
At the Government Leaders Forum today, Microsoft Chairman and Chief Software Architect Bill Gates announced the EuroScience Initiative in his keynote to over 500 government leaders and public officials.

Self-organization and vegetation collapse in salt marsh ecosystems
It is a premise in ecology that undisturbed ecosystems are relatively stable, and hence that sudden changes in ecosystem are likely to result from external, mostly human influences.

Gene used in brain development can cause childhood brain cancers
A gene that's normally silenced after contributing to brain development was found to be expressed in cells from medulloblastoma, the most common form of pediatric brain malignancy in children, scientists report in an article published in the February 1 issue of the journal Cancer Research.

Survivors who stop taking aspirin increase risk of another stroke
Stroke survivors who stopped taking their prescribed daily aspirin tripled their risk of having another stroke within the month, according to research presented today at the American Stroke Association's International Stroke Conference 2005.

Association publishes blueprint to strengthen stroke care from prevention through recovery
Stroke care providers must develop systems of care to improve each link in the chain of survival in preventing and treating stroke, the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association urges in a new statement.

Illness and medical bills cause half of all bankruptcies
Medical problems contributed to about half of all bankruptcies, involving 700,000 households in 2001, according to a story published as a Web exclusive by the journal Health Affairs.

Selective predation and productivity jointly drive complex behavior in host-parasite systems
Spencer R. Hall, Meghan A. Duffy, and Carla E. Cáceres studied a simple model which shows how predators that strongly prefer parasitized hosts can introduce

Detecting secondary aerosols
A new detection device that will aid research into global climate change and environmental and life-science issues by measuring the particles formed in reactions.

Scientists find male finches frugal in their attempts to attract females
Attracting a mate can be a costly endeavor, according to a University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill scientist, but new experiments he helped lead show that some male animals economize on courting when the chance of success seems low.
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