Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

April 07, 2005
Christmas week snowstorm in Ohio River valley broke all records
Even though spring and warm-weather thoughts are here, a chilling, soon-to-be published report says that December's immense Midwest snowstorm was one to remember.

Post-traumatic stress disorder common among refugees in western countries
Refugees settled in western countries could be about ten times more likely to have post-traumatic stress disorder than general populations in those countries, suggests a study published in this week's issue of The Lancet.

Women with heart attacks benefit from stenting
Female heart attack patients undergoing angioplasty have a higher risk of death than men, but stenting may improve their outcomes, according to a study reported in Circulation: Journal of the American Heart Association.

New kidney protein regulates heart rate and blood pressure
In a study appearing in the JCI, researchers from Yale University searched for novel proteins secreted by the kidney.

Scientists' pied piper approach may have found Nemo faster
Finding Nemo might have been easier had his family used 'pied piper' techniques being developed by an international team of marine biologists led by the University of Edinburgh.

Viruses may one day help treat brain tumors
New research shows that a virus designed to kill cancer cells can significantly increase the survival of mice with an incurable human brain tumor, even in some animals with advanced disease.

Australian kidney researcher applauded
Melissa Little, a scientist from the University of Queensland's Institute for Molecular Bioscience (IMB) was presented with the prestigious GlaxoSmithKline Australia Award for Research Excellence tonight for her contribution to the development of new treatments for renal disease.

Mediterranean diet leads to longer life
The Mediterranean diet is associated with longer life expectancy among elderly Europeans, finds a study published online by the BMJ today.

Exposed: Tobacco companies efforts to influence industry privatisation
A paper in this week's issue of The Lancet highlights how two tobacco companies attempted to influence plans to privatise the state-owned tobacco industry in Moldova.

Hemodialysis causes antioxidant loss leading to long-term complications
An article published in Hemodialysis International discusses the role of oxidative stress (OS) in dialysis patients, an imbalance which can result in long-term health problems.

Scientists to study actions of botanical oils
Wake Forest University School of Medicine has received a $7.5 million grant from the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM) and the Office of Dietary Supplements (ODS) to open a research center to study dietary supplements.

UB conference to gather leaders in 'computational anatomy'
Some of the leading figures at the forefront of the new field of

Yale researchers use laser light to remote control flies
Scientists at Yale have genetically designed triggers in the brains of fruit flies that allow the flies' behavior to be controlled with laser light.In some experiments they altered how the flies jump, beat their wings and fly in an escape response.

Aussie scientists make animation splash
Kevin Cryan of CSIRO Mathematical and Information Sciences says that current approaches to animating fluids like water, smoke, gases, lava and molten metals are based on relatively simplistic calculations and do not deliver anything like realistic motion.

Lack of vigorous activity linked to functional decline in older adults with arthritis
A team of researchers at Northwestern University conducted a long-term study of various risk factors, based on a large national sample of older adults with arthritis.

Vigorously active adolescents are leaner, fitter
Adolescents who get daily vigorous physical activity tend to be leaner and fitter than their less active peers, researchers have shown.

Once-a-month naltrexone successfully used to treat alcohol dependence
Once-a-month, long acting injections of the drug naltrexone, combiined with psychotherapy, signficantly reduced heavy drinking in patients being treated for alcohol dependence.

Primates on the brink
Mankind's closest living relatives - the world's apes, monkeys, lemurs and other primates - face increasing peril from humans and some could soon disappear forever, according to a report released today by the Primate Specialist Group of IUCN-The World Conservation Union's Species Survival Commission (SSC) and the International Primatological Society (IPS), in collaboration with Conservation International (CI).

'Promiscuous' area of brain could explain role of antidepressants
A study at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston may lead to a better understanding of how antidepressants like Prozac work - and how to make them more effective.

Owl genomics presents a HEPATOCHIP for diagnosis of non-alcoholic steatohepatitis
OWL Genomics, biotechnological company, has presented at the CIC bioGUNE hold at the Bizkaia Technological Park (Derio), the first DNA chip concerning diagnosis and prognosis of non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH), allowing the discrimination between normal, steatosis and NASH predisposed subjects.

Lupus and the role of Epstein-Barr virus
Published in the April 2005 issue of Arthritis & Rheumatism, the results of the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS) study show a strong association of EBV-IgA antibodies with lupus in African Americans.

Genetic diversity predicts susceptibility to a deadly emerging disease
Like nearly a third of all amphibians, the Italian agile frog is a declining species facing potential extinction.

Where bacteria get their genes
Bacteria acquired up to 90 percent of their genetic material from distantly related bacteria species, according to new research.

Bacterial infection associated with heart attack in young men
Preliminary research suggests infection with Chlamydia pneumoniae may increase the risk of heart attack in young men, according to an article in the April 15 issue of Clinical Infectious Diseases, now available online.

Belgium doctors treating critically ill infants favour legalising euthanasia
Most paediatricians in Flanders, Belgium, favour the legalisation of lethal drugs to end the life of some critically ill babies and infants, concludes a study in this week's issue of The Lancet.

Fibril shape is the basis of prion strains and cross-species prion infection
Although prions from one species rarely infect other species, researchers suspected that the species barrier is overcome when prions in the two species share a certain level of genetic sequence similarity.

David Awschalom awarded the 2005 Agilent Europhysics Prize in condensed matter physics
Agilent Technologies Inc. has announced that the European Physical Society (EPS) awarded the 2005 Agilent Europhysics Prize for Outstanding Achievement in Condensed Matter Physics to Professor David Awschalom of the University of California, Santa Barbara.

Depression overtakes back pain for incapacity benefit claims
Common mental disorders, such as depression and anxiety, now account for more incapacity benefit claims than musculoskeletal conditions like low back pain, say researchers in this week's BMJ.

UK approval procedures will drive research overseas
Approval procedures for UK research will

Researchers improve design of genetic on-off switches
Researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have set a new standard in the design and engineering of nuclear hormone receptor-based genetic on-off switches, without causing new problems or aggravating existing ones.

HGM2005 (HUGO's 10th International Human Genome Meeting) will be held in Kyoto
The Human Genome Organization (HUGO) will hold HGM2005 (HUGO's 10th International Genome Meeting) in Kyoto from April 18-21, 2005.

OHSU researchers demonstrate how Alzheimer's disease impacts important brain cell function
Researchers at Oregon Health & Science University's Neurological Sciences Institute (NSI) have shed light on the brain cell damage caused by Alzheimer's disease.

Competition in health care may not result in better quality
For several decades, competition within the health care industry has been touted as the way to curb rising prices by reducing inefficient practices and improving quality and safety.

PSA screening for prostate cancer to be debated at annual meeting forum
Screening for prostate cancer with a PSA (prostate specific antigen) blood test, though routinely performed today in men middle-aged and older, remains a source of controversy.

Clearing the air on airplane cabin air
Fear about the safety of air in airplane cabins heightens whenever new infections, such as SARS or avian flu, appear in headlines.

Florida Tech professor announces new software testing journal
Dr. Cem Kaner, Florida Tech professor of computer science, announces the founding of the Journal of the Association for Software Testing.

Why do amyloid diseases strike different tissues?
Researchers at The Scripps Research Institute are reporting the results of a recent study that addresses why different tissues in the human body vary in their susceptibility to

U. of Colorado study shows early Earth atmosphere hydrogen-rich, favorable to life
A new University of Colorado at Boulder study indicates Earth in its infancy probably had substantial quantities of hydrogen in its atmosphere, a surprising finding that may alter the way many scientists think about how life began on the planet.

People with peanut allergy at risk of allergic reaction to lupin flour
A report in this week's issue of THE LANCET concludes that adults and children with an allergy to peanuts could also be allergic to lupin flour--a substance that is used in some European countries as a potential replacement for soya flour.

Unchaperoned examinations risk misconduct allegations
Doctors who continue performing intimate examinations unchaperoned risk allegations of misconduct, warn researchers in a letter to this week's BMJ.

Gene mutated in cancer found in some with autism
A gene that is changed in many forms of cancer has also been found to show similar changes in some forms of autism, according to preliminary research.

Dr. Gutin selected as Fulbright Senior Specialist
Dr. Bernard Gutin, a Medical College of Georgia researcher studying the relationship between fitness, fatness and health in children, has been selected a Fulbright Senior Specialist to help Spain deal with a growing childhood obesity problem.

The right to live gives us a right to die
Human beings' inalienable right to life means we also have the right to die, says an editorial in this week's BMJ.

Researchers unmask malaria parasite's cloaking mechanism
Scientists are making strides in understanding how the malaria parasite disguises itself to avoid detection by the immune system.

2005 AAAS human rights directory now available
The American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) released today a new directory to help ease the exchange of information among human rights groups, scientific societies, and individual scientists.

JCI table of contents May 1, 2005
This press release contains summaries, links to full PDFs and author contact information for the following newsworthy papers which will appear in the May issue of the Journal of Clinical Investigation: New kidney protein regulates heart rate and blood pressure; With a WNK and a smile, blood pressure is under control; The A B Cs of Tangier Disease; CD36 greases up fat secretion and clearance; and Vaccines get a boost from IL-7.

Protein tags regulate key ion channel
A recently discovered process known as sumoylation -- until now thought to be active only in the nucleus -- also occurs near the cell's surface where it regulates proteins, providing a novel target for the development of new drugs.

Study: Level I trauma centers boost head injury survival
Head injury patients transferred to level I trauma centers are more likely to survive than if they're transferred to level II facilities, an Oregon Health & Science University study has found.

'Born-again' stars reveal how the earth was created
Scientists at The University of Manchester have unveiled new research which shows how exploding stars may have helped to create the earth.

Students and young professionals from Europe and Canada design planetary habitats
The MoonMars Habitat Student Design Workshop is underway at ESA/ESTEC - working in the inspiring setting of the Erasmus User Centre, the 30 participants have until the end of the week to study, discuss and design a Moon, Mars or other planetary habitat.

Remote control flies?: Fly behavior controlled by laser light
Researcher have installed genetically encoded phototriggers -- ion channels that jump-start neuronal activity when illuminated -- in brain cells in fruit flies.

Lewis C. Cantley, Ph.D., receives Pezcoller-AACR International Award for Cancer Research
Lewis C. Cantley, Ph.D., chief of the Division of Signal Transduction at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC) and Professor of Systems Biology at Harvard Medical School, has been named the recipient of the eighth annual Pezcoller Foundation-American Association of Cancer Research International Award for Cancer Research.

Molecular motors cooperate in moving cellular cargo, study shows
Researchers using an extremely fast and accurate imaging technique have shed light on the tiny movements of molecular motors that shuttle material within living cells.

ISHLT updates guidelines for heart and lung transplants
During its annual meeting this week, the International Society for Heart and Lung Transplantation will revisit the current criteria used by organ centers for transplantation; the organization is working to provide comprehensive guidelines for transplant waiting lists and the management of potential transplant recipients.
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