Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

December 21, 2005
Rutgers researchers scientifically link dancing ability to mate quality
Dance has long been recognized as a signal of courtship in many animal species, including humans.

Cell biologists applaud intelligent design ruling
Zena Werb, President of the American Society for Cell Biology, hailed the ruling Thursday by US District John Jones in 'Kitzmiller et al v.

CYPHER® Sirolimus-eluting Coronary Stent benefits from clinical success, worldwide growth in 2005
New data from a Spanish study presented at the 2005 American Heart Association Scientific Sessions found that patients with bifurcation lesions fared significantly better when treated with the CYPHER® Sirolimus-eluting Coronary Stent compared with the Taxus stent in the areas of late loss, re-treatment (total lesion revascularization or TLR) and re-blockage (restenosis).

Illuminating Alzheimer's: Research sheds light on creatine's presence in brain
Alzheimer's disease is one of the most hauntingly destructive maladies to wreak havoc on humans.

Brain cell activity increases levels of key ingredient in Alzheimer's plaques
Increased communication between brain cells increases levels of amyloid beta, the key ingredient in Alzheimer's brain plaques, scientists at Washington University School of Medicine in St.

New study examines how sense of smell affects mating and aggression in mice
New research by scientists at UCSF sheds light on how the odor detecting system in mice sends signals that affect their social behavior.

Study finds significant independent association between air pollution and cardiovascular risk
JAMA today published the findings of a study directed by Mount Sinai School of Medicine Researchers and funded by the National Institute of Health.

Mars region probably less watery than thought, says new U. of Colorado study
A region of Mars that some planetary scientists believe was once a shallow lakebed and likely habitable for life may not have been so wet after all, according to a new University of Colorado at Boulder study.

Polymorphism and antibodies associated with highly increased risk of rheumatoid arthritis
People who have a specific genetic variant of the PTPN22 gene and test positive for antibodies against cyclic citrullinated peptide are much more at risk of developing rheumatoid arthritis than people who only have one of these markers, a study published today in the journal Arthritis Research & Therapy reveals.

State board-disciplined physicians more likely to have shown unprofessional behavior in med school
Physicians disciplined by state medical boards during their professional medical careers were three times more likely than their colleagues to have exhibited unprofessional behavior while in medical school, according to a new study.

Univ. of Chicago researchers license pharmacogenomics test for patients with colorectal cancer to Mayo
University of Chicago researchers have licensed a genetic test that determines which patients are likely to have a serious adverse reaction to irinotecan hydrochloride (Camptosar®), a key component of the standard first-line treatment for advanced cancers of the colon and rectum, to Mayo Clinic.

GIOVE-A mated with launcher upper stage; Launch set for 28 December
Preparations for the launch of GIOVE-A, the first Galileo satellite, are continuing at the Baikonur Cosmodrome.

ASU geologists suggest Mars features are result of meteorite strikes, not of evaporated lakes
Geologic features at the Opportunity landing site on Mars were formed not by a lake that evaporated but by constant strikes from meteorites, say two Arizona State University geologists.

Grant allows ASU archaeologist to study how environment influences evolution
ASU archaeologist Curtis Marean wants to learn more about modern human evolution by gaining a better understanding of the physical environment in which ancient peoples lived.

MSG-2 in position for tonight's launch
Europe's latest weather satellite has been successfully rolled-out to its launch zone atop its Ariane 5.

New study demonstrates combined techniques to detect, monitor Alzheimer's disease
The search for new measures, or

Aquaporin and obesity
Dr. Gema Frühbeck, director of the Metabolic Research Laboratory of the University Hospital of the University of Navarra, has published a commentary in the latest issue of Nature.

Breaking the mold: Research teams sequence three fungus genomes
From garden compost to forest greenery, the mold Aspergillus fumigatus lurks across much of the world.

Einstein was right (again): Experiments confirm that E= mc2
Albert Einstein was correct in his prediction that E=mc2, according to scientists at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), the Commerce Department's National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), and the Institute Laue Langevin, Genoble, France (ILL) who conducted the most precise direct test ever of what is perhaps the most famous formula in science.

American Chemical Society, India council to hold meeting to promote shared research
The American Chemical Society (ACS) and India's Council on Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) will hold a joint conference in India Jan.

Early, aggressive treatment of type 1 diabetes lowers risk of cardiovascular disease
Intensive and early treatment of type 1 diabetes substantially lowers the risk of cardiovascular ailments such as heart disease and stroke, a new multicenter study shows.

Light-sensing cells in retina develop before vision
Investigators at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis have found that cells making up a non-visual system in the eye are in place and functioning long before the rods and cones that process light into vision.

A distinguished program training the next generation of conservation scientists
Eight doctoral students -- from Canada to Chile, and from Florida to Ohio, Illinois and Georgia -- are receiving significant multi-year scholarships this year to conduct cutting-edge research critical to conserving and managing national parks throughout the Americas.

Tight glucose control cuts heart disease by half in type 1 diabetes
Intensive glucose control lowers the risk of heart disease and stroke by about 50 percent in people with type 1 diabetes, researchers report in the December 22, 2005, issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

Machinery of the 'marijuana munchies'
Marijuana -- or more specifically its active ingredient, tetrahydrocannabinol -- has a well-documented tendency to stimulate hunger.

Membrane research opens window to benefits for plants, humans
A wilting, water-starved houseplant and flood-covered crops have something in common.

SLU researchers uncover direct evidence on how HIV invades healthy cells
New insight into how HIV infects healthy cells could lead to new drug therapies, according to new research at Saint Louis University's Institute for Molecular Virology.

Possible evidence found for Beagle 2 location
The news that Beagle 2 may have been spotted on the surface of Mars in the immediate vicinity of where it was expected to land was welcomed by the European Space Agency.

Fast track for innovative space technologies
A novel astronaut training system, innovative planetary landing technology and hydrogen gas storage in 0.1-mm micro-spheres are just some of the innovative ideas presented during the first Innovation Triangle Initiative Final Presentation Day at ESTEC.

Infectious agent thwarts typical defense mechanisms; Sheds light on immune system function
A new study found that an extremely infectious pneumonia-like disease in humans slips through the immune system's usual defense mechanisms.

Research clarifies how brain replenishes memory-making molecules
New research on living neurons has clarified how the brain refreshes the supply of molecules it needs to make new memories.

Successful first test for Vega's Zefiro 9 engine
Flames, smoke and a deafening noise accompanied the first firing test of Vega's Zefiro 9 third-stage solid rocket motor.

New synthetic compounds appear to prevent brain cell death
Spanish chemists have developed a promising set of synthetic compounds that one day could help slow or perhaps halt the progression of Alzheimer's disease and other neurological disorders.

Mayo Clinic finds kidney cancer patients are unlikely to respond to potential treatment drug
Mayo Clinic Cancer Center investigators report that imatinib mesylate (GleevecTM), the drug used to treat patients with gastrointestinal stromal cancers, is not likely to be effective for patients with high grade renal cell carcinoma -- the most aggressive kidney cancer.

Scientists unlock the mystery of the mechanics of liquid crystal alignment
For more than 30 years, scientists have worked to understand the exact mechanism responsible for liquid crystal alignment, to no avail - until now.

Allo, allo? A star is ringing
Astronomers have used ESO's Very Large Telescope in Chile and the Anglo-Australian Telescope as a 'stellar stethoscope' to listen to the internal rumblings of a nearby star.

New view of cancer: 'Epigenetic' changes come before mutations
A Johns Hopkins researcher and colleagues in Sweden and at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center suggest that the traditional view of cancer as a group of diseases whose properties arise from a series of alterations within a cell's nuclear DNA may have to give way to a more complicated view.

Humans do not understand mirror reflections, say researchers
Psychologists at the University of Liverpool have found that people still find it difficult to understand how mirrors work.

Feeling the holiday blues? Then you must have children
Parenthood is not associated with enhanced mental health, and, in fact, is more likely to be associated with symptoms of depression, according to recently published sociological research.

A key that opens cells to the deadly malaria parasite
Researchers at the International Centre for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology (ICGEB) in India and a unit of the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL) in France have made a key discovery about a molecule that helps the malaria parasite infect human cells.

Fear of death may factor into who we vote for
When confronted with our mortality, we may vote for a candidate we would not normally choose.

Molecular imaging allows detection of plaques likely to rupture
Diagnostic strategies at the molecular level are being developed that

Antibody therapy promising for pediatric neuroblastoma
A new strategy that turns small populations of immune system cells into armies that track down and kill neuroblastoma throughout the body could save the lives of many children each year, according to investigators at St.

Flashes from the past: Echoes from ancient supernovae
A team of astronomers has found faint visible 'echoes' of three ancient supernovae by detecting centuries-old light reflected by interstellar gas clouds hundreds of light-years removed from the original explosions.

Mission to Mars via Antarctica
A few weeks before leaving for the Antarctic Concordia Station, the Italian-French crew that will spend over one year in one of the harshest, isolated environments on Earth, attended two days of preparatory training at ESA's Headquarters in Paris, France.

NIH awards $13 million for science education projects
To increase public understanding of science and to encourage student interest in research careers, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) today announced it will provide $13 million to fund a dozen Science Education Partnership Awards (SEPA).

New study says two million Americans harbor drug-resistant superbug
New research estimates that about 2 million people carry a strain of drug-resistant bacteria in their noses.

Genome discovery will help combat disease and lead to new drugs
An international consortium of researchers led by the University of Manchester has cracked the gene code behind a key family of fungi, which includes both the leading cause of death in leukaemia and bone marrow transplant patients and an essential ingredient of soy sauce.

Astronomers use laser to take clearest images of the center of the Milky Way
UCLA astronomers have taken the first clear picture of the center of our Milky Way galaxy.

Benefits of flu vaccine substantially overestimated says study
Studies of influenza vaccine effectiveness in elderly people substantially overestimate vaccine benefits, according to new research from the US published today in the International Journal of Epidemiology (IJE), edited at the University of Bristol.

E=mc2 passes tough MIT test
In a fitting cap to the World Year of Physics 2005, MIT physicists and colleagues report the most precise direct test yet of Einstein's most famous equation, E=mc2. And, yes, Einstein still rules.

If you flaunt it, you've got it: How red-heads top the pecking order
Red-headed finches dominate their black-headed and yellow-headed peers by physical aggression and by the mere fact of being red-headed, according to research published today in the Proceedings of the Royal Society.

Ancient trans-Atlantic swarm brought locusts to the New World
Somewhere between three and five million years ago, a massive swarm of locusts took off from the west coast of Africa and made an unlikely voyage across the Atlantic Ocean to colonize the New World, says an international team of researchers.

Magnesium in your diet could lead to stronger bones
Intake of magnesium through diet and supplements is positively associated with bone density throughout the whole body, particularly in older white adults, according to research published in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society.

Researchers quantify more noise in gene expression
A team of researchers at UCSD reports in the Dec.

International team of scientists complete fungal genomic sequences
An international team of scientists have determined and compared the genome sequences of three aspergilli - Aspergillus fumigatus, a potentially deadly human pathogen, A. oryzae, used in the production of soy sauce and sake, and A. nidulans, a model genetic organism.

Rapid emotional recovery of breast-cancer survivors surprises researchers
Contrary to psychologists' expectations, breast cancer survivors don't experience an extended emotional crisis after their treatment regimens end, according to a new study by researchers at Washington University School of Medicine in St.

2006 AAAAI Annual Meeting media invitation
The world's leading researchers in allergic diseases will gather in Miami Beach, March 3-7, 2006, for the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology's (AAAAI's) 2006 Annual Meeting,

Million dollar life savers
Two of Australia's leading researchers have each won a million dollars to fund their ongoing cutting-edge Australian research into brain disorders, autoimmune diseases and leukaemia.

Novel strategies needed to boost cancer clinical trial participation among blacks and Asians
The better informed people are about cancer clinical trials, the more likely they are overall to consider participating in a trial, according to a UC Davis study published in today's issue of the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

Brain activity, drugs could affect Alzheimer's progression
The activity of connections among brain cells significantly affects levels of the toxic protein beta-amyloid (Aß) that is a major cause of Alzheimer's disease (AD), researchers have found.
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