Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

April 15, 2005
Scientists model physics of stellar burning
A University of California scientist at Los Alamos National Laboratory working with astronomers from around the world recently validated a computer model that predicts the rebirth and stellar burning and mixing processes of evolved stars.

Highlights from the April issue of Ecology
This month's Ecology covers several topics including: Brown-headed cowbirds skew sex ratios, open-ocean fish communities impacted by commercial fishing, and the use of plant defense theory to understand inbreeding in plants.

Sociologist explores who goes to college and why
To give scholars a new framework to better understand who goes to college and why, Stephen L.

Research urgently needed to treat blood clots in children
Potentially deadly blood clots are being missed in children, and more research and awareness is needed in the medical community, according to a researcher from the University of Alberta.

Small clades at the periphery of passerine morphological space
Although large evolutionary radiations producing many species have captured the attention of biologists, comparison of the sizes of evolutionary lineages show that unusually small groups with few species are more frequent than one would expect from a model of random speciation and extinction.

Joining hands to solve a DNA replication problem
A Howard Hughes Medical Institute professor and a colleague who mentors HHMI-supported undergraduates in his structural biology lab are using the tools of molecular biology, biochemistry and biophysics to solve a scientific puzzle.

The evolution of phenotypic polymorphism
This new study, which will appear in the June 2005 issue of The American Naturalist, asserts that an individual could use his/her genotype as an informative cue when

Eocene plant diversity at Laguna del Hunco and RĂ­o PichileufĂș, Patagonia, Argentina
South American floras are famous for their high species diversity.

Scottish health minister launches major new clinical trials project to boost business and health
Andy Kerr MSP, Minister for Health, is set to launch Glasgow Biomedicine - a groundbreaking initiative set to boost health and business in Scotland.

The biggest family tree ever
The University of Arizona will perform the DNA analysis for the public participation component of the Genographic Project, the world's most ambitious project tracing the genetic and migratory history of the human race.

A kiss that binds
Fragile X syndrome results from loss of expression of the Fragile X mental retardation protein (FMRP), the product of the FMR1 gene.

Signatures of the first stars
A primitive star with extremely low iron content has been discovered by an international research team from Sweden, Japan, Germany, USA, Australia and Great Britain.

Easing the anxiety of pregnancy after miscarriage
Pregnancy for most women means joyous anticipation of the birth of a baby, day-dreaming about the child, preparing the nursery, accepting congratulations from friends.

Diversity, endemism, and age distributions in macroevolutionary sources and sinks
Regions with high diversity or many unique species are often assumed to be hotbeds of species origination, but a new theory demonstrates that such places could instead result from the immigration of species.

American Thoracic Society Journal news tips for April 2005 (second issue)
Newsworthy articles feature studies showing that: family conferences in intensive care units to discuss the withholding or withdrawing of life-sustaining therapy in critically ill patients demonstrated missed opportunities to provide either family support or information; and Chinese investigators have revealed that the early presence of interferon-inducible protein 10, an immunoregulatory protein, is a prominent characteristic of the body's immune reaction to the SARS virus, and could lead to better diagnosis and treatment.

Study uncovers bacteria's worst enemy
University of California scientists working at Los Alamos National Laboratory have found that the successful use of bacteria to remediate environmental contamination from nuclear waste and processing activities may depend more upon how resistant the bacteria are to chemicals than to how tolerant they are to radioactivity.

Shape-altering genes linked to ovarian cancer
Frequently referred to as a silent killer, ovarian cancer offers few clues to its presence, often until it has spread beyond the ovary to other tissues.

Rice, NC State win NAS/Keck Futures funding
Researchers from Rice University and North Carolina State University have received funding from the National Academies Keck Futures Initiative to study one of the critical questions in the biology of nanomaterials: how such particles cross membranes to interact with cells.

Researchers find that chocolate compound stops cancer cell cycle in lab experiments
Researchers from Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center at Georgetown University have shown how an ingredient found in chocolate seems to exert its anti-cancer properties -- findings that might be used one day to design novel cancer treatments.

New isotope gives a glimpse of the origins of precious metals
The beginnings of precious metals like gold can be traced to the blink of an eye in an exploding star billions of years ago, and scientists at the National Superconducting Cyclotron Laboratory at Michigan State University have been able to scrutinize a crucial step in that process.

SMART-1 search for lunar peaks of eternal light
ESA's SMART-1 mission to the Moon has been monitoring the illumination of lunar poles since the beginning of 2005 - about two months before arriving at its final science orbit.

Space debris mitigation: The case for a code of conduct
There is a lot of junk orbiting the Earth and the problem will worsen unless there are changes in how spacecraft operators operate.

8th World Wilderness Congress announced
The 8th World Wilderness Congress (WWC) will convene from September 30 - October 6, 2005 at the Egan Convention Center in Anchorage, Alaska.

MR spectroscopy may be superior for determining prostate cancer prognosis
A new way of evaluating prostate tumors may help physicians determine the best treatment strategy.

Lance Armstrong Foundation supports UHC research
The Lance Armstrong Foundation (LAF) has named Vivian von Gruenigen, MD, a gynecologic oncologist at University Hospitals of Cleveland, the winner of a

Watching microglia at work
Max Planck researchers shed light on the immune defense behaviour of microglial cells in the brain.

Northwestern's cancer genetics program finds gene variants that greatly increase breast cancer risk
Decreased activity within the Transforming Growth Factor Beta (TGF-beta) pathway is associated with increased breast cancer risk, according to a study published by researchers at Northwestern Memorial Hospital and Northwestern University's Robert H.
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