Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

November 16, 2005
Riding roller coasters may actually be 'death-defying' for people with heart disease
The thrill of a roller coaster ride with its climbs, loops and dives can speed up the heart, sparking off an irregular heartbeat that could put individuals with heart disease at risk of having a cardiovascular event, according to new research reported at the American Heart Association's Scientific Sessions 2005.

Number of serotonin receptors influences brain's response to fear and stress
How we respond to stressful situations could be due in part to dominance of one cell-surface marker over another in a region of the brain that regulates emotional responses and behaviors, suggests results of a University of Pittsburgh study presented at the Society for Neuroscience annual meeting.

Robotic surgery-stenting combo opens coronary arteries, speeds recovery
Combining robotically assisted coronary artery bypass surgery (CABG) with stented angioplasty shows promise for treating extensive coronary artery disease, researchers reported at the American Heart Association's Scientific Sessions 2005.

UC Davis researchers shed new light on how chemotherapy-induced leukemia develops
Topoisomerase II inhibitors are among the most successful chemotherapy drugs used to treat human cancer.

New data shows ACTOS® reduced heart attacks by 28 percent in people with type 2 diabetes
New results from secondary analyses of the landmark PROactive Study found that ACTOS® (pioglitazone HCl) significantly reduced the occurrence of fatal and non-fatal heart attacks and acute coronary syndrome (ACS) in high-risk patients with type 2 diabetes who had a previous heart attack.

Growing health effects of global warming outlined on regional scale
In a synthesis report featured on the cover of the Nov.

Mice models developed at UCSD to benefit patients with multiple system atrophy
Researchers at the University of California, San Diego (UCSD) School of Medicine have developed a series of transgenic mouse models of multiple system atrophy, a progressive, fatal neurological disorder.

Cholesterol treatment, including statins, may slow Alzheimer's disease progression
Cholesterol lowering drugs, including statins, may slow the progression of Alzheimer's disease, concludes a study in the Journal of Neurology Neurosurgery and Psychiatry.

Scientists map one of biology's critical light-sensing structures
For the first time, scientists have obtained a detailed map of one of biology's most important light detectors, a protein found in many species across life's plant, fungal, and bacterial kingdoms.

Ozone levels may raise risk of underweight births
Babies born to women exposed to high ozone levels during pregnancy are at heightened risk for being significantly underweight, according to researchers at the Keck School of Medicine of the University of Southern California.

The food you eat could change your genes
A simple food supplement could change your behaviour for the better, or even potentially halt the genetic effects that predispose people to diseases such as schizophrenia or Huntingtons.

Antidepressants potentially misused in treating adolescents, Stanford study finds
Now new research from the Stanford University School of Medicine provides critical documentation of the potential misuse of these medications in the years leading up to the FDA's decision to issue the so-called

UC Davis researchers discover genetic switch involved in cells' response to radiation therapy
UC Davis Cancer Center researchers have discovered a genetic switch that causes cancer cells to become more sensitive to a drug administered to enhance radiation therapy effectiveness.

Active psoriatic arthritis patients on REMICADE® achieve major clinical response in arthritis
New data, including two-year treatment duration, show a significantly higher proportion of patients with active psoriatic arthritis receiving REMICADE® (infliximab) achieved and sustained a high degree of clinical improvement in arthritis, as assessed using the rheumatoid arthritis (RA) definition for

Australian National University's Anstey wins GSA's 2005 Margret M. Baltes Award
The Gerontological Society of America has chosen Dr. Kaarin Anstey of Australian National University as the 2005 recipient of the Margret M.

GSA confers 2005 M. Powell Lawton Award to Yale University's Tinetti
The Gerontological Society of America has chosen Yale University's Dr.

University of Minnesota's Warner wins GSA's 2005 Donald P. Kent Award
The Gerontological Society of America has chosen Dr. Huber Warner of the University of Minnesota as the 2005 recipient of the Donald P.

GSA confers 2005 Nathan Shock New Investigator Award to McGill University's Duque
The Gerontological Society of America has chosen Dr. Gustavo Duque of McGill University to receive its 2005 Nathan Shock New Investigator Award.

Masternak set to receive the Geron Corporation - Samuel Goldstein Distinguished Publication Award
Southern Illinois University's Dr. Michal M. Masternak has been chosen by The Gerontological Society of America to receive its 2005 Geron Corporation - Samuel Goldstein Distinguished Publication Award.

Exercise linked to reduced breast cancer risk
Both black women and white women who regularly exercise have a decreased risk of breast cancer compared to women who do not exercise, according to researchers at the Keck School of Medicine of the University of Southern California.

Magnetic fields revealed in technicolour
Vibrations of magnetization have for the first time been captured on camera by scientists at The University of Manchester revealing a rainbow of colours.

Studies show apo A-I Milano gene transfer and antibody therapy cut atherosclerotic plaque
According to a recent animal study of a new gene therapy, a single injection led to a significant reduction in plaque and moderation of an immune response that contributes to plaque buildup and rupture.

Lifestyle modification plus medication more effective than medication alone
A new study shows that treatment with a lifestyle modification program of diet, exercise and behavioral therapy when used in combination with the weight loss medication sibutramine (Meridia®) resulted in significantly greater weight loss among obese adults than treatment with the medication alone.

Jessie F. Richardson Foundation's Brown Wilson to receive GSA's 2005 Pollack Award
Dr. Keren Brown Wilson of the Jessie F. Richardson Foundation has been chosen by The Gerontological Society of America to receive its 2005 Maxwell A.

Study reveals best ways for pediatricians to educate families
Shari Barkin, M.D., a pediatrician at Brenner Children's Hospital, says physicians who discuss numerous health prevention topics with parents during a well-child visit run the risk of having the parent forget the information quickly.

Recycled or revamped therapeutics find novel anti-cancer applications
A second look at compounds and drugs, some previously used to treat illness and conditions ranging from malaria to contraception, is giving new life to several abandon therapies and new applications for existing drugs.

Drug may fight lupus and atherosclerosis simultaneously
People with lupus are prone to premature accelerated atherosclerosis. Now scientists at Wake Forest University School of Medicine think they have a way to prevent or decrease this atherosclerosis and prevent heart attacks.

Novel protein complex enables survival in hostile environment
Biswarup Mukhopadhyay and Eric Johnson from the Virginia Bioinformatics Institute at Virginia Tech have discovered a novel enzyme that represents an ancient detoxification system and provides a clue to the development of early metabolism on earth.

Illegal drug use could account for 1 million visits a year to emergency care in England
Illegal drug use could account for up to 1 million visits a year to emergency care departments and 400,000 admissions to hospital in England, suggests research in Emergency Medicine Journal.

Two UT Southwestern researchers honored by American Heart Association
A UT Southwestern professor of internal medicine and molecular genetics, Dr.

Breakthrough streamlines complex work assignments
Christodoulos Floudas and his students Stacy Janak and Martin Taylor have invented a mathematical formula that may transform the way that day-to-day work assignments are made across government and industry.

ANA encourages nurses and health care workers to get vaccinated against flu
A new survey supported by the American Nurses Association (ANA) reveals that 86 percent of polled registered nurses are extremely or very concerned about their patients becoming infected with influenza.

Tips from the journals of the American Society for Microbiology
Tips from the journals of the American Society for Microbiology include: Gene identified in epstein-barr virus that may contribute to cancer; New study suggests human papillomavirus could be spread through blood; New gene identified for antiviral activity.

GSA confers 2005 Distinguished Mentorship in Gerontology Award to USC's Bengtson
The Gerontological Society of America has chosen Dr. Vern Bengtson of the University of Southern California to receive its 2005 Award for the Distinguished Mentorship in Gerontology.

The Gerontological Society of America confers 2004 Richard Kalish Innovative Publication Award
The Gerontological Society of America has chosen Oregon State University's Dr.

African-Americans fare better in short term following coronary interventions, find Pitt researchers
A University of Pittsburgh study presented today at the American Heart Association meeting indicates that African-Americans fare better in the short term following coronary interventions.

MabThera - A unique approach providing lasting benefits for patients with rheumatoid arthritis
These data demonstrate that MabThera is highly effective in reducing the signs and symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis - providing relief to almost three times as many patients compared to placebo - following a course of just two administrations, two weeks apart MabThera is a safe and well tolerated treatment for rheumatoid arthritis.

The British National Space Centre and DMC join the International Charter 'Space and Major Disasters'
In London on Tuesday, the British National Space Centre (BNSC) formally became a partner agency of the International Charter 'Space and Major Disasters' on behalf of the Disaster Monitoring Constellation (DMC) Consortium.

Centocor & Schering-Plough next generation biologic promising in Phase 2 rheumatoid arthritis trial
Results from a Phase 2 rheumatoid arthritis (RA) study assessing the safety and efficacy of golimumab (CNTO 148), a fully-human anti-TNF-alpha therapy, showed that it achieved the primary endpoint of the study.

Astrophysicists put kibosh on alternative theory of star formation
The two competing theories of star formation differ in how much gas they predict the cores of new stars suck in from the clump of gas in which they're embedded.

Global signaling study suggests cancer link to protein promiscuity
When found at abnormally high concentrations, two proteins implicated in many human cancers have the potential to spur indiscriminate biochemical signaling inside cells, chemists at Harvard University have found.

Integral reveals new class of 'supergiant' X-ray binary stars
ESA's Integral gamma-ray observatory has discovered a new, highly populated class of X-ray fast 'transient' binary stars, undetected in previous observations.

Battle to beat the bugs wins bio-firm top honour
A fledgling bio-business -- developing products to combat deadly hospital infections like MRSA -- has won a prestigious industry award.

Statins may simulate stem cells for heart repair
The drug pravastatin, which is used widely to decrease high cholesterol, may provide a previously unknown cardiovascular benefit in addition to lowering lipids.

Zooming in on the protein-conducting channel
Researchers have gained the most detailed view yet of the heart of the translocon, a channel through which newly constructed proteins are inserted into the cell membrane.

Capsules effective in treating acute manic and mixed episodes of Bipolar I Disorder
Shire Pharmaceuticals Inc. has announced that University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill researchers studied the efficacy of carbamazepine extended-release capsules (CBZ-ERC, Equetro) in patients with manic or mixed episodes of Bipolar I Disorder over six months.

Scientists engineer mice to mimic Alzheimer's therapy
Researchers with the University of Florida and the California Institute of Technology have developed a new strain of genetically modified mice that allow scientists to examine the potential usefulness of new therapies for Alzheimer's disease.

A fast diagnosis for bacterial meningitis
University of Sydney researchers at Westmead Millennium Institute have developed an accurate and rapid method of diagnosing bacterial meningitis.

CERN awarded high-performance computing prize at Supercomputing 2005
CERN has received the High Performance Computing (HPC) Public Awareness Award at a ceremony at Supercomputing 2005 in Seattle this week.

UC San Francisco's Harrington wins GSA's 2005 Doris Schwartz Gerontological Nursing Award
The Gerontological Society of America has chosen Dr. Charlene Harrington of the University of California, San Francisco's School of Nursing, as the recipient of the 2005 Doris Schwartz Gerontological Nursing Award.

Jefferson researchers find drug may give some cardiac protection 24 hours after heart attack
A drug has been shown to provide some protection to the heart from injury even if given as much as 24 hours after a heart attack, Jefferson Medical College researchers report.

Case Western Reserve University's Noelker to receive GSA's 2005 Distinguished Career award
The Gerontological Society of America has chosen Dr. Linda Noelker of Case Western Reserve University's Sociology Department to receive its 2005 Award for the Distinguished Career Contribution to Gerontology.

NIDDK media availability: Obesity pharmacotherapy
This week's issue of The New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM) has two articles and an editorial on obesity pharmacotherapy.

Cardiovascular drug may improve heart failure and help prevent sudden death
Research shows that Carvedilol, a cardiovascular drug, could be useful in reducing cardiac death in high risk patients with prior myocardial infarction and/or heart failure and also in reducing the incidence and/or preventing the occurrence of atrial fibrillation in a number of clinical situations.

Edinburgh vet's bid to cut deaths from rabies in Africa
The fatal disease of rabies, which kills thousands of people in Africa and Asia each year, could be dealt a body blow if a new dog vaccination programme in Tanzania proves successful.

Twelve-point plan tackles moral and ethical issues of using email for health research
Email provides exciting new opportunities for health researchers but also raises a wide range of moral and ethical issues, according to a paper in the latest Journal of Advanced Nursing.

Experts call for re-focussing of COPD management to reduce hospital admissions and mortality
A new report on the importance of treating Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) exacerbations is launched today, on World COPD Day.

Journal of Rehabilitation Research & Development tipsheet
The current issue of the Journal of Rehabilitation Research and Development includes four articles on sensory communication, including effectiveness of blind rehabilitation and mobility for people with vision impairment; four articles on spinal cord injury (SCI)-related research addressing the monitoring of voluntary movement in patients with SCI and wheelchair design and an array of other articles on such topics as postural stability, traumatic injury assessment, and poststroke treatment and outcomes.

The Gerontological Society of America bestows Robert W. Kleemeier Award to Duke University's Blazer
The Gerontological Society of America has chosen Dr. Dan Blazer as the 2005 recipient of the Robert W.

UCLA scientists report promising new molecular approach to fighting schizophrenia
In new research that helps to reveal the nature of schizophrenia at the cellular level, UCLA scientists report the discovery of unique DNA sequence variations associated with increased risk for schizophrenia, memory impairments, and other cognitive deficits.

Study uncovers potential biomarker for lupus atherosclerosis
Groundbreaking research reported at the annual meeting of the American College of Rheumatology indicates that a certain form of the normally

Research reveals likely connection between early-life stress and teenage mental health problems
Research conducted at the Oregon National Primate Research Center at OHSU and at the University of Pittsburgh suggests a strong link between significant stress early in life and the increased incidence of mental health problems during adolescence.

Study finds lifestyle modification and weight loss medication superior to either approach used alone
According to a study that appears in the November 17 issue of The New England Journal of Medicine, researchers at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine found that weight loss medications work best when combined with dieters' own efforts to modify their eating and exercise habits.

Stress interferes with problem-solving; Beta-blocker may help
An experience as simple as watching graphically violent or emotional scenes in a movie can induce enough stress to interfere with problem-solving abilities, new research at Ohio State University Medical Center suggests.

Common anti-seizure drug could be effective for lupus patients
A common anti-seizure drug may be effective against certain conditions associated with lupus, according to animal research at Wake Forest University School of Medicine.

A project to prevent risks on construction worksites
The Technologies Research Centre, Ikerlan, is leading the Var Trainer European project, which consists of developing training simulators for handling machinery aimed at workers in the construction sector to avoid risks in the workplace.

The UK's top science stories
Newsline is the free quarterly publication from EPSRC (the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council).

Connective tissue cells from lungs fused with heart muscle to form biological pacemaker
In guinea pig experiments, Johns Hopkins scientists fused common connective tissue cells taken from lungs with heart muscle cells to create a safe and effective biological pacemaker whose cells can fire on their own and naturally regulate the muscle's rhythmic beat.

GSA confers 2005 Joseph T. Freeman Award to New York Medical College's Aronow
Dr. Wilbert S. Aronow of the New York Medical College has been chosen by The Gerontological Society of America to receive its 2005 Joseph T.

Climate models help scientists understand global shifts in water availability
USGS scientists have a clearer picture of global shifts in water availability after examining a century of streamflow measurements from 165 locations around the world.

Missing fossil link 'Dallasaurus' found
When amateur fossil finder Van Turner discovered a small vertebra at a construction site near Dallas 17 years ago, he knew the creature was unlike anything in the fossil record.

Forensic Science: The Nexus of Science and the Law
At this program, part of the Arthur M. Sackler Colloquium series, expert panelists will discuss existing and emerging forensic technologies and examine the basic science underlying these tools and methods.

Ophthalmologist directs honor to Southwestern Medical Foundation
Dr. H. Dwight Cavanagh, vice chairman of ophthalmology at UT Southwestern Medical Center, has directed that a donation accompanying a national award for his research be given to Southwestern Medical Foundation in honor of its chairman and president.

Geochemical Transactions moves to open access with BioMed Central
BioMed Central is pleased to announce that it will publish Geochemical Transactions, the online journal of the Geochemistry Division of the American Chemical Society, from January 1, 2006.

CIHR releases research results to inform the development of benchmarks for wait times
The Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) released today research reports 'Toward Canadian Benchmarks for Health Services Wait Times' in the areas of cancer, joint replacement and sight restoration.

Scientists use stem cells to grow cartilage
Scientists from Imperial College London have successfully converted human embryonic stem cells into cartilage cells, offering encouragement that replacement cartilage could one day be grown for transplantation.

Modern technology helps shed light on illnesses in artists of the past
A new article applies the technology of clinical laboratories to identify diseases affecting famous artists of the past.

Scripps-led study shows climate warming to shrink key water supplies around the world
In the looming future, global warming will reduce glaciers and storage packs of snow in regions around the world, causing water shortages and other problems that will impact millions of people.

Swedish researchers warn university students face infertility
A Swedish study published on-line (Thursday 17 November) in Human Reproduction, has found that many female academics plan to have children during the period when fertility has markedly declined - a decision that the authors say is

Drinking decaffeinated coffee may be harmful to heart health
Decaffeinated -- not caffeinated -- coffee may cause an increase in harmful LDL cholesterol by increasing a specific type of blood fat linked to the metabolic syndrome, hints a new study presented at the American Heart Association's Scientific Sessions 2005.

Through Calit2, Ericsson endows UCSD Chair in Wireless Communication
UCSD professor Laurence Milstein will occupy the Ericsson Endowed Chair in Wireless Communication Access Techniques, funded by telecom giant Ericsson.

Advances in Forest Threat Assessment: Applications to Forest and Rangeland Management
North America's forests and rangelands face many environmental threats that often act in concert and with no regard for land ownership and administrative boundaries.

The land of three rising suns
There may be more than a thousand planets in our galactic neighbourhood with multiple suns. is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to