Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

February 02, 2006
Partner proteins may help estrogen foster breast cancer
A new study suggests that the hormone estrogen works in partnership with other proteins to activate or suppress gene activity in breast cancer cells.

Scripps marine ecologist named Pew Fellow in Marine Conservation
Enric Sala, an associate professor of marine ecology at Scripps Institution of Oceanography at the University of California, San Diego, has been selected as a 2006 Pew Fellow in Marine Conservation.

Illegal trade is propelling rare turtle toward extinction, new report
A new report released today finds that the illegal trade in the Roti Island snake-necked turtle, found only on one island in Indonesia, has left it all but extinct in the wild.

Kegel exercises reduce urinary incontinence in women, study confirms
Women suffering from urinary incontinence can benefit from pelvic floor muscle training, commonly known as Kegel exercises, according to a new review of studies.

Researchers provide dose of education to lower blood pressure
Leaders of the most comprehensive study of hypertension treatment ever undertaken are communicating their findings to improve prevention and treatment of high blood pressure.

Autonomous underwater vehicle maps ancient Greek shipwreck
After lying hidden for centuries off the coast of Greece, a sunken 4th century B.C. merchant ship and its cargo have been surveyed by an international team using a robotic underwater vehicle.

HIV decline in Zimbabwe linked to behavioural change
An international research team believes that changes in behaviour among the population have accelerated the recent decline in HIV infection in Eastern Zimbabwe.

Women pregnant with girls experience more severe asthma symptoms
Women with asthma who are carrying a female fetus are more likely to experience worse asthma symptoms than asthmatic women carrying a male fetus, researchers at Yale School of Medicine report in the February issue of American Journal of Epidemiology.

New technologies enhance quantum cryptography
A team of Los Alamos National Laboratory scientists, in collaboration with researchers from the National Institute of Standards and Technology in Boulder, Colo., and Albion College, in Albion, Mich., have achieved quantum key distribution (QKD) at telecommunications industry wavelengths in a 50-kilometer (31 mile) optical fiber.

New material brings hydrogen fuel, cheaper petrochemicals closer to reality
A rubbery material that can purify hydrogen efficiently in its most usable form for fuel cells and oil refining has been developed by a chemical engineering group at The University of Texas, Austin.

Mutation in brain cells of descendants of Abraham Lincoln suggest he suffered from movement disorder
Researchers at Johns Hopkins and the University of Minnesota have discovered a gene mutation in the descendants of Abraham Lincoln's grandparents that suggests the Civil War president himself might have also suffered from a disease that destroys nerve cells in the cerebellum -- the part of the brain that controls movement.

Preserved in crystal
Scientists at the Weizmann Institute of Science recently discovered a new source of well-preserved ancient DNA in fossil bones.

Teens' healthy food choices foiled by early lunch, soft drink machine income and parents who cater
Penn State researchers have identified three previously unreported factors that foil the efforts of high school students to make healthy food choices - early lunch, school income from soft drink incentives, and parents who bring fast food to the cafeteria for their kids.

Pesticide combinations imperil frogs, probably contribute to amphibian decline
Some two dozen pesticides, herbicides and fungicides are sprayed on corn, and Midwestern frog ponds reflect this -- they're a brew of chemicals and endocrine disruptors that can persist through the growing season.

Triple code
Is there a universal neural code for sensation, similar to the genetic code, in which the complexity of sense and experience can be reduced to a few simple rules?

Preterm birth risk quickly and accurately detected with proteomic profiling
By profiling specific proteins in amniotic fluid for inflammation, researchers at Yale School of Medicine can quickly and accurately detect potentially dangerous infections in pregnant women, and also predict the possibility of premature birth.

MIT: Deep-sea robot photographs ancient Greek shipwreck
A team from MIT and Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute used an autonomous underwater vehicle to make a survey of a 4th-century B.C.

Doctors need to be able to recognise smallpox
Even though smallpox has been eradicated, it is important that doctors have the ability to recognise the disease and distinguish it from other illnesses, in case it is reintroduced, state the authors of a Seminar in this week's issue of The Lancet.

New method enables gene disruption in destructive fungal pathogen
Researchers at the Virginia Bioinformatics Institute (VBI) at Virginia Tech, Colorado State University, and Duke University Medical Center have developed a new method to determine gene function on a genome-wide scale in the fungal pathogen Alternaria brassicicola.

New design for transistors powered by single electrons
Scientists from the National Institute of Standards and Technology and NTT Corp. of Japan have demonstrated the first reproducible, controllable silicon transistors that are turned on and off by the motion of individual electrons.

Any national childhood flu-vaccine program should include evaluation component
If the United States were to launch an annual influenza-vaccination program among the nation's school children, resources also should go to evaluate the program's success in reducing community-wide flu transmission.

Northwestern Memorial Hospital named Bariatric Surgery Society 'Center of Excellence'
The bariatric surgery practice at Northwestern Memorial Hospital was recently designated a Bariatric Surgery Center of Excellence by the American Society of Bariatric Surgery.

Call not to use certain type of anti-viral drugs for influenza a virus for 2006 flu season
Recent, additional data show that the prevalence of adamantane-resistant influenza A viruses is high across the United States, according to a new study published online today by JAMA because of its public health importance.

UC Riverside researchers identify clay as major contributor to oxygen that enabled early animal life
Clay made animal life possible on Earth, a study led by Martin Kennedy, an associate professor of sedimentary geology and geochemistry at UC Riverside, finds.

How to find the orbital needle in the celestial haystack
On 2 February, experts from across the world meet at ESA to discuss how to best calculate spacecraft orbits.

MNI researchers find that sense of smell is dependent on body position
Before giving flowers or scattering rose petals on Valentine's Day, make sure your significant other has already gotten out of bed.

Stable polymer nanotubes may have a biotech future
Scientists at the National Institute of Standards and Technology have created polymer nanotubes that are unusually long (about 1 centimeter) as well as stable enough to maintain their shape indefinitely.

Patients capable of self-monitoring their anticoagulation therapy have survival benefit
Patients capable of self-monitoring their warfarin therapy could benefit from a one-third reduction in death from all causes, according to a meta-analysis in this week's issue of The Lancet.

Aging cells, aging body: Fresh evidence for a connection
When cells age and stop dividing, how much do they contribute to whole-body aging?

NASA's 'Deep Impact' team reports first evidence of cometary ice
Comet Tempel 1, target of last year's July 4 cosmic collision, contains small amounts of surface water ice.

Avantogen and Innovate merge key oncology program, RP101, RP101
Avantogen Limited (ASX:ACU), Sydney, Australia and San Diego, CA, and Innovate Oncology, Inc (IOVO:OTCBB), New York, a company founded by Bioaccelerate Holdings Inc.

Fire panel changes offer real-time fire status data
Fire panels, or

DNA end caps may lead to cancer treatments, UT Southwestern researchers report
The two ends of human DNA have different structures that are treated differently as a cell divides, UT Southwestern Medical Center researchers have found in a study that could help lead to cancer therapies.

Profiling amniotic fluid yields faster test for infection and preterm birth risk, researchers find
Profiling certain proteins in amniotic fluid to find biomarkers of inflammation is the fastest and most accurate way to detect potentially dangerous infections in pregnant women, and also can accurately predict whether premature delivery is imminent, according to researchers speaking today at the Annual Meeting of the Society for Maternal-Fetal Medicine (SMFM).

Thousands of Scots families to help scientists improve nation's health
Generation Scotland, an ambitious and ground-breaking project looking at the ways genetic and lifestyle factors cause cancer, heart disease and mental illness is launched today, Thursday, 2 February in Edinburgh.

The Emotional First Aid + Kit: A Practical Guide to Life After Bariatric Surgery
Matrix Medical Communications announces the release of their new book, The Emotional First Aid Kit, which is a must-read for bariatric surgery patients.

One fish, two fish: New MIT sensor improves fish counts
Researchers at MIT have found a new way of looking beneath the ocean surface that could help definitively determine whether fish populations are shrinking.

Receptor critical in neurodegeneration reduces Alzheimer's plaque
Increasing the level of a protein that plays a key role in traumatic spinal cord injuries and multiple sclerosis reduces the concentration of disease-causing plaque in Alzheimer's disease.

Researchers evolve a complex genetic trait in the laboratory
Duke University biologists have evolved a complex trait in the laboratory -- using the pressure of selection to induce tobacco hornworms to evolve the dual trait of turning black or green depending on the temperature during their development.

Search engines return similar results for e-commerce comparison shopping
Consumers who go to multiple search engines looking for the best prices or products may be spending more time than needed, says a Penn State researcher.

Olfactory nerve cells expressing same receptor display a varied set of reactions
In a mouse model, University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine researchers discovered that olfactory sensory neurons expressing the same receptor responded to a specific odor with an array of speeds and sensitivities, a phenomenon previously not detected in the mammalian sense of smell.

Medical debt draining Kansans' resources, threatening health care access
A new report documents that many lower-income Kansans face unaffordable medical bills, resulting in overwhelming debt that severely impairs their financial stability.

$5.4 million grant to Yale EPH to study parasitic disease spread by female sand flies
Yale University researchers have been awarded a $5.4 million National Institutes of Health grant for the study of a parasitic disease that affects thousands of children each year.

Minimally invasive procedure OK for wide range of aorta problems, study shows
Tens of thousands of Americans live with a ticking time bomb in their chests.

Mount Sinai School of Medicine launches a phase II clinical trial for new gene transfer drug study
The WALK study, led by the Mount Sinai School of Medicine and sponsored by Genzyme Corporation, will determine if a new gene transfer treatment helps ease the pain caused by intermittent claudication.

Prescription painkillers effective in patients with dormant inflammatory bowel disease
According to two studies published today in the American Gastroenterological Association (AGA) journal Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology, prescription painkillers are effective in easing the pain of patients with dormant inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) and are not likely to cause symptom flare-ups in IBD patients in remissions.

New measurements prove myosin VI can act as molecular transporter
In living organisms, hundreds of different kinds of molecular motors perform a variety of essential, but little understood tasks that result in such actions as muscle contraction, cell division and the movement of materials within cells.

UK researcher finds 'switching' compound for angiogenesis
For the second time in a week Dr. Jayakrishna Ambati, UK HealthCare physician and associate professor and vice chair of the Department of Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences, announced a discovery from his lab that will affect the future of macular degeneration treatment and research.

Hepatitis C recurs rapidly after liver transplant
When a diseased liver is removed from a patient with Hepatitis C (HCV), serum viral levels plummet.

Study demonstrates rapid diagnosis of urinary tract infections with biosensor technology
In a recent clinical study, researchers used a biosensor to identify correctly the infection-causing gram negative bacteria species in 98 percent of the tested clinical urinary tract infection urine samples.

New testing method developed to assess safety, health risks of nanomaterials
UCLA has developed a new testing strategy to help manufacturers monitor and test the safety and health risks of engineered nanomaterials.

Radiologists have a duty to communicate their reports effectively to clinicians
It is a radiologist's responsibility to make sure critical reports are communicated to clinicians, state the authors of a Viewpoint in this week's issue of The Lancet.

UCI researchers prove a single memory is processed in three separate parts of the brain
UCI researchers have found that a single brief memory is actually processed differently in separate areas of the brain - an idea that until now scientists have only suspected to be true.

OHSU research reveals the complexities of obesity/cortisol interactions
Researchers at Oregon Health & Science University have revealed that the cortisol/obesity connection, touted by many weight-loss supplement marketers, may be even more tenuous than first thought.

Enhanced LIDAR improves range, vibration measures
Scientists at the National Institute of Standards and Technology have demonstrated the use of an ultrafast laser

Post-pregnancy events promote breast tumor metastasis
Changes in the tissue environment of the breast that occur after pregnancy promote the metastasis of breast tumor cells.

Radar teledetection for estimating the superficial humidity of soil
Photographic images captured by radar satellites enable the superficial humidity of agricultural basins to be estimated with great precision, although it is important to have knowledge of the rugosity of the surface.

Elsevier to publish Journal of Clinical Densitometry
World-leading scientific and medical publisher Elsevier is pleased to announce the formation of a publishing partnership with the International Society for Clinical Densitometry (ISCD), the world's leading organization in the field covering the assessment of skeletal health. 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