Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

June 17, 2005
Going to extremes to improve human health
The rare ability to simulate -- in a laboratory setting -- environments as specific as a mountain top at 18,000 feet, and to change variables including temperature and relative humidity at will -- now belongs to scientists in the University of Oregon's Department of Human Physiology.

Changing sexual behaviour in the UK
The past half-century has seen distinct changes in our sexual behaviour, and these changes have been considerably more marked among women than men.

Insects develop resistance to engineered crops
Cornell University entomologist Anthony Shelton finds when engineered crops containing just one Bt toxin grow near modified plants with two toxins, insects may more rapidly develop resistance to all the engineered plants.

Only transplant center that developed comprehensive protocol for liver transplants in kids with MSUD
One year ago, Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh became the first transplant center to develop a comprehensive, multidisciplinary medical protocol for performing liver transplants in patients with Maple Syrup Urine Disease.

Gifts from the sea
It's annual migration time on Cape Cod again, the time of year when Woods Hole squid arrive by the tens of thousands.

New study: Why solar cells lose potency
Commercial products such as laptop computer monitors and solar-powered calculators are constructed from a light-sensitive material with a peculiar problem: When exposed to intense light, it forms defects, reducing the efficiency of the solar cells by 10 to 15 percent.

Governments of Canada and Saskatchewan to cost-share remediation of uranium mines
The Government of Canada today announced that it will share the cost of remediating certain uranium mining facilities in northern Saskatchewan with that provincial government.

Street-level London air pollution warnings coming via mobile phones
The air pollution in Central London and the London borough of Croydon is being forecast daily as part of a pioneering ESA-backed project.

SEROQUEL: An effective treatment option for aggression in patients with schizophrenia
A new study, published today in the journal Human Psychopharmacology: Clinical and Experimental,1 shows that the atypical antipsychotic SEROQUEL (quetiapine), may be an effective treatment option for patients with schizophrenia who exhibit aggressive behaviour during psychotic episodes.

Seven deadly sins: A new look at society through an old lens
A new ESRC report, published to launch Social Science Week 2005, uses the seven deadly sins - pride, anger, lust, avarice, gluttony, envy and sloth - as a way of looking at some pressing issues of modern life: religious conflict, rage in kids and adults, sexual behaviour, corporate greed, binge drinking, rising personal debt and political apathy.

UC San Diego undergraduates do cyberinfrastructure research in Asia, Australia
Thirteen undergraduate engineers from UC San Diego fly to Japan, China, Taiwan and Australia on June 20 to begin summer-long research projects in the field of global cyber infrastructure.

New research evidence on anger in children and adults
New research uses longitudinal evidence to help understand anger and distinguish between people for whom anger is an occasional experience - and therefore quite normal - and those for whom it is more persistent.

VCU study shows big-brained people are smarter
People with bigger brains are smarter than their smaller-brained counterparts, according to a study conducted by a Virginia Commonwealth University researcher published in the journal

Smooth deployment for second MARSIS antenna boom
The second 20-metre antenna boom of the MARSIS instrument on board Mars Express was successfully - and smoothly - deployed, confirmed today by the ground team at ESA's European Space Operations Centre.

Tips from the Journals of the American Society for Microbiology
Tips from the Journals of the American Society for Microbiology include: Newly identified inhibitor of anthrax toxin may contribute to safer vaccine and offer postexposure therapy; Old drug may offer new hope in treating SARS; and One vaccine may protect against both parainfluenza and influenza viruses.

Personal debt: envy, penury or necessity?
What part does envy play in the apparently spiralling stock of personal debt in the UK, which last year passed the £1 trillion mark?

TGen awarded $7.1 million to accelerate brain disease research
The Translational Genomics Research Institute (TGen) today announced the receipt of a $7.1 million grant from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to continue a project designed to uncover the genetic causes of neurological and mental health disorders using sophisticated genetic scanning technologies.

Bipolar disorder more prevalent and costly than believed; Lithium could curb suicide rate
Preliminary results of a new survey indicate 4.3 percent of U.S. adults suffer from a bipolar disorder, considerably higher than earlier studies estimating 1 percent prevalence.

'Strange' physics experiment is unraveling structure of proton
An international team of nuclear physicists has determined that particles called strange quarks do, indeed, contribute to the ordinary properties of the proton.

FDA approves first blood test to predict risk for stroke
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved today the first blood test designed to help predict a patient's risk for ischemic stroke, the most common type of stroke and one of the nation's leading causes of long-term disability affecting approximately 700,000 people per year.

ACP publishes 'Hypertension'
As the population ages, hypertension will become a more frequent diagnosis for the primary care physician.

New alliance takes shape
Two of the world's leading agricultural research institutes have announced more details of an exciting new Alliance to help improve the lives of the millions of poor farmers in the developing world growing the cereal crops rice, wheat and maize.

BIDMC investigator receives Novartis Award in Diabetes
Endocrinologist Christos S. Mantzoros, MD, Director of the Human Nutrition Research Unit at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC), has received the 2005 Novartis Award in Diabetes (Young Investigator).

NIH awards $11.9 M to The Burnham Institute to establish the San Diego Chemical Screening Center
The Burnham Institute has been selected by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) as one of nine national centers for high-throughput chemical compound screening, known collectively as

Low election turnout reflects the failure of UK politicians
The general elections of 2001 and 2005 had the second and third worst turnouts since 1900, falling from 71% in 1997 to under 60% in 2001 and only just above 61% this May.

Cancer patients do better with surgeons, hospitals that treat higher volume
Patients with certain complex cancers fare better under the care of doctors and hospitals that do the most of that kind of surgery, a new review of studies finds.

Tight glucose control lowers CVD by about 50 percent in diabetes
A significantly lower risk of heart disease can now be added to the list of proven long-term benefits of tight glucose control in people with type 1 diabetes.

Vietnam war technology could aid elephant conservation
Seismic sensors developed to track enemy troop movements during the Vietnam war could help ecologists monitor and conserve elephant populations, according to new research published in the British Ecological Society's Journal of Applied Ecology.

A good game of golf--mind over matter
A new study from the University of Alberta shows the strategies that elite golfers use to manage performance stress effectively.

Study sheds light on why diabetes drug causes edema
In related discoveries with far-reaching implications for treating diabetes and understanding hypertension, University of Utah researchers have learned why thiazolidinediones (TZDs), a major anti-diabetes drug, cause edema and also have found a new pathway critical to fluid metabolism.

Bipolar disorder linked to specific brain regions; certain drugs alter brain metabolism
Special sessions focus on recent and promising research and offer clues into the brain mechanisms that underlie bipolar disorder.

'Binge drinkers': Folk devils of the binge economy
An extraordinary amount of media attention focuses on alcohol consumption and its impact on public order and health.

Rare chalk grassland takes 50 years to recover from military use
Rare and fragmented chalk grasslands may take at least half a century to recover from the damage done to them by military training, according to new research published in the British Ecological Society's Journal of Applied Ecology.
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