Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

October 03, 2005
Exercise in midlife could reduce the risk of dementia and Alzheimer's disease
Being physically active in midlife could decrease a person's risk of dementia and Alzheimer's disease (AD) later in life, concludes an article published online today (Tuesday October 4, 2005) by The Lancet Neurology.

WiCell receives $16 million NIH grant to create national stem cell bank
The WiCell Research Institute has been selected by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to establish the federal government's first and only National Stem Cell Bank (NSCB), it was announced today at a news conference in Madison.

Phenotype is influenced by nature, nurture and noise
Geneticists have debated for decades the relative importance of nature versus nurture in determining how an animal looks and behaves, and now UCSD scientists report that noise could also be an important factor in determining phenotype.

Emergency departments may often under-diagnose mental disorders in youth
Young people visiting an emergency department following an episode of deliberate self-harm are diagnosed with a mental disorder about half the time, according to a study in the October issue of the Archives of General Psychiatry, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

Fetal brain imaging
A modified technique that uses the eyes as the line of reference means a 50 percent reduction in the time necessary to take MRI images of the fetal brain.

Researchers show key protein necessary for normal development of red blood cells
Virginia Commonwealth University researchers studying hemoglobin genes, mutations of which play a role in genetic blood disorders like sickle cell anemia and beta-thalassemia, have shown in studies with mice that the KLF2 protein is crucial for making young red blood cells.

High fat diet alters hepatic immune system in mice
Mice that were fed diets high in fat and sugar developed immune system abnormalities in their livers, including reduced numbers of natural killer T (NKT) cells.

KwaZulu-Natal's successful fight against malaria
In KwaZulu-Natal strengthening of vector control and a change in antimalarial treatment policy to use of artemether- lumefantrine has been associated with a decrease in malaria cases, admissions, and deaths, according to an article published in the freely-available online journal PLoS Medicine.

Boiler modifications cut mercury emissions 70 percent or more, research team finds
Lehigh University research team achieves reductions in emission of the toxic element by altering flue-gas temperature, size of coal particles burned and other physical conditions.

Mayo Clinic research collaboration discovers why some DNA repair fails
Mayo Clinic researchers have discovered the inner workings of a defective DNA repair process and are first to explain why certain mutations are not corrected in cells.

New battery technology helps stimulate nerves
With the help of new silicon-based compounds, scientists -- and patients -- are getting a significant new charge out of the tiny lithium batteries used in implantable devices to help treat nervous system and other disorders.

Solar-powered charging systems to help hurricane recovery efforts
The US Department of Energy's National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), working in partnership with the Florida Solar Energy Center (FSEC), is providing solar electric charging stations to help residents of Kiln, Miss., recover from the devastation of Hurricane Katrina.

EPA-led group finds same protein that attracts nutrient iron protects lung from particles
DMT1 has been exclusively studied for its vital role in transporting iron in the gut and into the body.

Hitting the bottle with the genetic basis for alcoholism
Genetics play a role in alcohol drinking behaviors. A new JCI study shows decreased function of CREB in the amygdala is involved in anxiety and alcohol drinking behavior.

Physical inactivity worsens GI symptoms in obese people
Physical activity may help reduce gastrointestinal (GI) symptoms in people who are obese.

Fried food and fatter kids
New research shows that adolescents who eat large amounts of fried food away from home are heavier and more likely to have a poor-quality diet.

Discovery links blood cell defect to common lung disorder, leads to novel treatment
A persistent scarcity of oxygen in body tissues - a widespread problem in patients with heart or lung disease - can create a defect of red blood cells that further exacerbates the condition by constricting blood vessels in the lung, Howard Hughes Medical Institute researchers at Duke University Medical Center have found.

Brenner Children's Hospital pediatrician says one symptom no longer a clear sign of child abuse
Children who come to a pediatrician's office with genital or anal warts may not be the victims of child abuse as once thought, according to pediatricians at Brenner Children's Hospital, part of Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center.

Kindergarten retention fails to help academic achievement
A new examination of research on this perennially-controversial issue indicates that retention does not improve achievement among kindergartners in reading or mathematics, nor does it facilitate instruction by making classrooms more homogeneous academically.

Gulf warm-water eddies intensify hurricane changes
Scientists monitoring ocean heat and circulation in the Gulf of Mexico during Hurricanes Katrina and Rita have a new understanding of how these tropical storms can gain intensity so quickly: The Gulf of Mexico's

Your favourite TV programme anywhere!
Good news for TV addicts. Soon they will have the possibility to watch their favourite TV programmes wherever they may be as a result of new chipsets for digital TV from a dynamic French electronics company.

Finding rewrites the evolutionary history of the origin of potatoes
Humans have cultivated potatoes for millennia, but there has been great controversy about the ubiquitous vegetable's origins.

Medication appears effective in treating teen heroin addiction
In a comparison of two drugs prescribed to treat teenagers dependent on heroin and other opioids, the drug buprenorphine was more effective, especially in treatment retention, according to a study in the October issue of Archives of General Psychiatry, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

American Thoracic Society journal news tips for October 2005 (first issue)
Newsworthy articles feature studies showing that: physicians can better determine the most effective inhaled corticosteroid dose for children with moderate to severe asthma by measuring nitric oxide levels in the patients' breath, rather than by observing symptoms; and an increase in the number of a certain type of stem cell in patient's blood was associated with a much improved survival rate for a devastating cause of respiratory failure, acute lung injury (ALI).

Candidate hookworm vaccine shows benefits in animal study
In a paper in the open access journal PLoS Medicine, vaccination of dogs with a recombinant protease produced by hookworms can reduce blood loss when these dogs are infected with the hookworm Ancylostoma caninum.

Fellowship funds major research project on medulloblastoma
Cure for Life FoundationTM has awarded one of the largest single fellowships on brain tumour research in Australia to a senior researcher at Children's Cancer Institute Australia (CCIA) for Medical Research in Randwick, NSW.

Burnham Institute to collaborate in NCI funded Center of Cancer Nanotechnology Excellence
As part of the newly funded Center of Cancer Nanotechnology Excellence (CCNE) established at the University of California by the National Cancer Institute (NCI Dr.

Large tularemia vaccine contracts among new NIAID biodefense awards
The National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), part of the National Institutes of Health, today announced that it has recently made several dozen awards to further strengthen the nation's biodefense and emerging disease research capabilities.

Medical College of Wisconsin study shows better parent-physician communication can substantially prevent hospitalizations for childhood asthma
Each year, some 196,000 children are hospitalized in the United States with asthma attacks.

Free-energy theory borne out in large-scale protein folding
Scientists at Rice University have combined theory and experiment for the first time to both predict theoretically and verify experimentally the protein-folding dynamics of a large, complex protein.

Tip sheet Annals of Internal Medicine, Oct. 4, 2005, issue
Tips for the October 4th issue of the Annals of Internal Medicine include: More heart patients die in the hospital in december than other months, but study shows hospital care similar to other months; Study: Majority of Americans likely to become overweight or obese, with serious implications for future health care and cost; and ACP does not recommend for or against screening for heriditary hemochromatosis.

Synthetic protein eases arthritis symptoms in mice
A lab-made version of a human protein alleviates symptoms of both acute and chronic arthritis in mice and could be the basis for a new arthritis drug for people, report scientists from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease (NIAID), part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH).

Molecular research suggests shift needed in how some drugs are created
The first close-up look at a pro-inflammatory signaling molecule involved in immune response in mammals suggests that researchers

Adolescents' HIV risk reduced with community intervention
A community-level intervention program aimed at young adolescents delays early intercourse, increases condom use and reduces the type of risky sexual behavior that can result in sexually transmitted diseases and HIV/AIDS, a Yale researcher reports in AIDS.

Sharper picture of major depression and alcohol disorders
Largest ever comorbidity study shows baby boomers, Native Americans are at increased risk.

Biomarkers used to predict recurrent disease in hepatitis C transplant patients
Two new studies on Hepatitis C (HCV) patients who underwent liver transplants examined a potential biomarker that could be used to predict who might develop hepatic fibrosis, a formation of scar-like tissue that can lead to cirrhosis.

Fitness-oriented gym classes demonstrate measurable health benefits for overweight children
Overweight children who took part in lifestyle-focused, fitness-oriented gym classes showed significant improvement in body composition, fitness, and insulin levels, according to a study in the October issue of Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

Evolutionary conservation of a mechanism of longevity from worms to mammals
Though the study of aging in the nematode model organism C. elegans has provided much insight into this complex process, it is not yet clear whether genes involved in aging in the worm have a similar role in mammals.

Mitochondrial biology gets a new chaperone
Mitochondrial complex I deficiency is a common defect in patients with mitochondrial disease.

Cancer treatment illustrates UI, private sector partnership
University of Iowa officials, along with state government leaders and representatives from Coley Pharmaceutical Group of Wellesley, Mass., today celebrated a milestone in Coley's development of a cancer treatment, CPG 7909.

Steroids reduce heart damage risk in children with Kawasaki's disease
When added to standard treatment, steroids significantly reduce the odds of developing heart damage in children with Kawasaki's disease, according to a study in the October issue of Pediatrics.

Extended release stimulant effective for long-term ADHD treatment
A new study has found that an all-day, extended-release stimulant for treating attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) remains effective for up to two years without significant side effects.

Carnegie Mellon scientists create PNA molecule with potential to build nanodevices
For the first time, a team of investigators at Carnegie Mellon University has shown that the binding of metal ions can mediate the formation of peptide nucleic acid (PNA) duplexes from single strands of PNA that are only partly complementary.

Do the Europeans turn ill sitting up so late?
Sleep loss can be a consequence of sleep disorders, shift work, socio-economic constraints or voluntary restriction of sleep, due to life style.

Cerebellum found to be important in cognition and behavior
Higher cognitive functions, like language and visual processing, have long been thought to reside primarily in the brain's cerebrum.

Kaustav Banerjee wins research award from Electrostatic Discharge Association
Kaustav Banerjee, an associate professor of electrical and computer engineering at the University of California, Santa Barbara won the 2005 international research award competition sponsored by the Electrostatic Discharge Association (ESDA).

El Carmen the first wilderness designation in Latin America
CEMEX, AgrupaciĆ³n Sierra Madre, Conservational International (CI), The Wild Foundation, Birdlife International and Comision Nacional de Areas Naturales Protegidas announced today the first Wilderness Designation in Latin America.

Brain protein linked to alcoholism and anxiety
Researchers at the University of Illinois at Chicago have discovered that a protein found in the brain is genetically linked to alcoholism and anxiety.

New book highlights world's borderless conservation areas
Nature knows no borders, according to a new book released today by CEMEX, Conservation International, and AgrupaciĆ³n Sierra Madre.

$16 million grant advances nanomedicine at Washington University
To advance nanotechnology for cancer diagnosis and treatment, the National Cancer Institute (NCI) has awarded $16 million over five years to the School of Medicine to establish the Siteman Center of Cancer Nanotechnology Excellence (SCCNE).

Substance lining blood vessels may cause cardiovascular disease
A paper published in the freely-available online journal PLoS Medicine reveals that pathophysiological concentrations of asymmetric dimethylarginine elicit significant changes in coronary artery endothelial cell gene expression and highlight specific molecular pathways for further investigation.

Phytochemicals may protect cartilage, prevent pain in joints
Researchers have discovered that plant-derived compounds known for their ability to protect tissue also block an enzyme that triggers inflammation in joints.

Energy Department awards $92 million
The Energy Department today announced research awards totaling $92 million for six projects to better understand microbes and microbial communities.

Examining how medicine is taught
Teams from eight medical schools across the United States and Canada met recently on the campus of the Indiana University School of Medicine for the nation's first conference focusing on assessing and improving the organizational environment and culture of academic medical centers.

North Shore-LIJ receives FDA approval for new drug application to manufacture PET scan drug
The Institute for Medical Research of the North Shore-Long Island Jewish Health System, located in Manhasset, NY, today announced that it has received approval from the U.S.

Special issue on cystic fibrosis in The Journal of Pediatrics
The Journal of Pediatrics has published a special supplement on current experience in treating cystic fibrosis and the benefit of newborn screening for cystic fibrosis.

Northwestern receives major award for nanotechnology cancer center
Northwestern University has been awarded a significant five-year grant from the National Cancer Institute to establish a Center for Cancer Nanotechnology Excellence (CCNE).

Hepatitis C drug proves cost-effective in helping patients with treatment-induced anemia
A UCLA/VA study found that for Hepatitis C patients who develop treatment-induced anemia due to a key medication, it is more cost-effective to take an additional drug to help prevent anemia, rather than reducing or stopping treatment altogether, which had been the standard approach.

UCLA scientist to present provost lecture on 'Nano Meccano' Oct. 7 at Science2005
An internationally recognized pioneer in the field of supramolecular chemistry--the chemistry beyond the molecule--from the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), will present the Provost Lecture at the University of Pittsburgh's fifth annual showcase of science and technology, Science2005: The New Research Ecology.

Chemical Biology & Drug Design. A new face, a new title, a new vision
From 2006, Tomi K Sawyer will take command of Chemical Biology & Drug Design, a significant re-launch of the internationally acclaimed Journal of Peptide Research.

Researchers win Nobel Medicine Prize for discovering cause of ulcers
Australian gastroenterologist Barry Marshall and pathologist Robin Warren were awarded the 2005 Nobel Medicine Prize today for discovering that the bacterium Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) is responsible for stomach inflammation and ulcers.

Vast majority of adults at risk of becoming overweight or obese
Framingham Heart Study researchers report that after 30 years, nine out of 10 men and seven out of 10 women were overweight or became overweight.

MERIS/AATSR Workshop looks at twin sensors with many uses
Two satellite sensors work better than one for the study of Earth's oceans, atmosphere and land - that was the message of a major ESA workshop bringing together scientific users of Envisat's MERIS and AATSR instruments.

A space station view on giant lightning
Do giant flashes of lightning striking upwards from thunder clouds merely pose an extraordinarily spectacular view?

DOE publishes roadmap for new biological research for energy and environmental needs
The Department of Energy today issued a comprehensive plan for a new generation of biology research that builds on genome project investments to help solve national energy and environmental challenges.

Researchers shed light on anxiety and alcohol intake
Scientists have identified a brain mechanism in rats that may play a central role in regulating anxiety and alcohol-drinking.

Intake of dietary copper helps Alzheimer's patients
As one of the services for patients with Alzheimer's disease, the Department of Psychiatry at the Saarland University Medical Center offers participation in a clinical phase II trial.

Precision bonding makes tiny high performance actuators possible
Using a new precision bonding process they developed, Penn State researchers have designed and fabricated tiny new piezoelectric microactuators -- the largest only a hair's breadth wide -- based on coupling commercially available materials with existing micromachining technology.

Health of coral reefs detected from orbit
Australian researchers have found Envisat's MERIS sensor can detect coral bleaching down to ten metres deep.

Many pediatricians say they would not continue care for families who refuse vaccines
More than one-third of pediatricians say they would dismiss a family from their practice for refusing all vaccinations, according to a study in the October issue of the Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

Many pediatricians say they would not continue care for families who refuse vaccines
More than one-third of pediatricians say they would dismiss a family from their practice for refusing all vaccinations, according to a study in the October issue of the Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

University of Aveiro hosts nanotechnology conference
Aveiro, Portugal was the venue that hosted nanoSMat2005 - the International Conference on Surfaces, Coatings and Nanostructured Materials from 7-9 September 2005.

Radiation dose reduction in liver cancer
A new digital angiography flat panel system reduces the radiation dose to patients undergoing interventional treatment for liver cancer by about one-fourth, a new study shows.

Amoxicillin use during infancy may be linked to tooth enamel defects
Use of the antibiotic amoxicillin during infancy appears to be linked to tooth enamel defects in permanent teeth, according to a study in the October issue of Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

The ACCP strives to close the 10/90 gap between rich and poor nations
Medical need in poor nations is a widely discussed issue in the medical and science communities.
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