Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

February 03, 2006
The long research road to a new vaccine
The Food and Drug Administration today announced the licensing of a new vaccine against rotavirus, a disease responsible for tens of thousands of hospitalizations in the United States and hundreds of thousands of deaths around the world each year.

Researchers break chain of biochemical events that brain cancer cells use to evade therapy
Using a drug originally intended for diabetes treatment, researchers at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center¡'s Maxine Dunitz Neurosurgical Institute have modified a series of intracellular biochemical events to decrease malignant brain cells¡' resistance to therapies that are designed to trigger a natural process of cell death.

Premature babies and SIDS: Doctors should make special effort to talk to parents About Risk
Doctors and parents should adjust when they take action to prevent SIDS because the syndrome strikes premature infants longer and later than full-term infants, says new Saint Louis University research.

Unique vascular dysfunction in women's heart disease described in major journal supplement
The Feb. 7, 2006 issue of the Journal of the American College of Cardiology includes a special supplement on the Women's Ischemia Syndrome Evaluation (WISE) study, a multi-center, long-term investigation sponsored by the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute.

Spyware poses a significant threat on the Net
Spyware programs represent an extensive threat to Internet users, according to a new study that surveyed the World Wide Web to find out what proportion of Web sites are trying to infect people with the covert and sometimes malicious programs.

Diabetic hearts make unhealthy switch to high-fat diet
The high-fat

ARVO/Pfizer Ophthalmics presentation available online
The ARVO Foundation for Eye Research, a supporting non-profit of the Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology (ARVO), announced today that the research presented at the inaugural ARVO/Pfizer Ophthalmics Research Institute meeting,

WOWing the crowds
A team of scientists at the Weizmann Institute of Science and the Hebrew University of Jerusalem has developed a method that could speed up the process of identifying novel protein molecules for medical or biological research hundreds of times over.

Conscientious objection in medicine should not be tolerated
A doctor's conscience should not be allowed to interfere with medical care, argues an ethics expert in this week's BMJ.

Ironing out new details of tuberculosis infection
Scientists in India, led by a Howard Hughes Medical Institute international research scholar, have identified five key genes that enable the bacterium that causes TB to acquire the iron it needs to sustain growth and promote infection.

Binghamton University receives $1.7 million NYSTAR award to enhance flexible electronics research 
Binghamton University's Integrated Electronics Engineering Center has been awarded $1.7 million from the New York State Office of Science, Technology and Academic Research to help speed microelectronics manufacturing research and development in a roll-to-roll format.

Breaking news
Could engineers have known ahead of time exactly how much pressure the levees protecting New Orleans could withstand before giving way?

Pritzker gift to fund possible solutions for child obesity including testing YMCA programs
To address the epidemic of childhood obesity, Harvard College alumna Penny Pritzker '81 and her husband, Bryan Traubert, have pledged $5 million to Harvard School of Public Health to fund the nationwide application of a childhood exercise and nutrition program that has been piloted by HSPH and the YMCA.

High-tech sieve sifts for hydrogen
Whether it's used in chemical laboratories or the fuel tanks of advanced automobiles, hydrogen is mostly produced from natural gas and other fossil fuels.

Memory problems at menopause: Nothing to forget about
Women who feel that they become more forgetful as menopause approaches shouldn't just

Detection of hot halo gets theory out of hot water
Scientists using NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory have detected an extensive halo of hot gas around a quiescent spiral galaxy.

Study shows minimally invasive lung surgery has low risk with same results as open surgery
About ninety percent of lung cancer operations at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center are performed using a technique called video-assisted thoracoscopic surgery (VATS).

High-risk black men are screened less for prostate cancer
The men most at risk for aggressive prostate cancer - black men with a family history - are the least likely to get screening even during peak ages of risk, researchers say.

Engineered heart tissue offers insights into irregular heartbeats, defibrillator failure
Engineers who have induced heart cells in culture to mimic the properties of the heart have used the tissue to gain new insight into the mechanisms that spawn irregular heart rhythms.

Gap widens between optimal versus actual cholesterol levels
An estimated 63 million adults have low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C) levels higher than what would be ideal as recommended by the National Institutes of Health.

Pitt professor's article considers nature as a service provider
A study published Feb. 1 in the journal BioScience finds that giving economic value to environmental systems may actually help preserve those systems in the long run.

'Visible Proofs' exhibition on forensic medicine opens at NIH
A new exhibition, opening 2/16/06 at NIH's National Library of Medicine, traces the history of forensic medicine from medieval days to present.

Obese women suffer more pregnancy complications
Compared to normal-weight women, overweight and obese women suffer more pregnancy complications and their babies have more medical problems at birth, according to a position paper of the Public Affairs Committee of the Teratology Society.

Lung cancer survival rates may be linked to access to care
New research suggests that the lower survival rates of blacks with lung cancer may be explained by access to care.

Awards totaling $6.2 million to create major genetic testing lab at University of Iowa
The University of Iowa's Center for Macular Degeneration, a world leader in the discovery of the genetic basis of blinding eye disease, will be able to significantly advance its mission with the creation of a large-scale nonprofit genetic testing laboratory, made possible by two gifts totaling $6.2 million.

NASA post-hurricane Katrina images available on Google Earth
NASA and the US Geological Survey (USGS) have published detailed aerial imagery of the impact of Hurricane Katrina on the Internet viewable on Google Earth.

Listen to the radio from an ISS spacesuit
If you were asked what station is currently orbiting 400 km above the Earth at 28,000 km/h you may be tempted to answer the International Space Station (ISS).

Concern over Britain's refugee detention policy
Experts in this week's BMJ express concern over Britain's policy of expanding detention centres for asylum seekers, despite evidence that it damages mental health.

Obesity may be factor in accelerated type I diabetes in some patients
Obesity, long known as a cause of type II diabetes, may accelerate the onset of type I diabetes in some - but not all - groups of younger patients, according to research at Wake Forest University School of Medicine and six clinical sites nationally.

Novel diagnosis of preeclampsia with proteomic analysis
Researchers at Yale School of Medicine have found that analyzing proteins in urine is a simple and objective method to diagnose and classify preeclampsia, a complication of pregnancy causing high blood pressure after 20 weeks of gestation.

Gene thwarts some pathogens, gives access to others, could save crops
A single gene apparently thwarts a disease-causing invader that creates a fuzzy gray coating on flowers, fruits and vegetables.

Can Islam help Muslim smokers to quit?
Muslim leaders should rule that smoking is prohibited under Islamic law to encourage Muslim smokers to quit, say doctors in this week's BMJ.

Does alcohol labelling encourage sensible drinking?
Clear labelling on shop-bought alcohol, showing the alcohol units contained and health advice, may not be effective in promoting sensible drinking, says a letter in this week's BMJ.
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