Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

April 27, 2006
Early diagnosis key to melanoma cure
A combined strategy of public education and early diagnosis currently offers the only hope of cure for people with melanoma, warn senior doctors in this week's BMJ.

Hubble provides spectacular view of ongoing comet breakup
The NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope is providing astronomers with extraordinary views of comet 73P/Schwassmann-Wachmann 3 as it disintegrates before our eyes.

K-State researchers study gene regulation in insects
Researchers first identified the genes associated with segmentation and discovered other insects, as well as humans, possessed the genes.

Patient choice stops at inhaled insulin
An editorial in this week's issue of the Lancet calls for physicians and patients to decide on whether it is appropriate to use inhaled insulin for diabetes, even though last week the UK's National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) released its appraisal document on inhaled insulin, open for consultation until May 10, which concluded that the treatment should not be offered to patients.

Novel stem cell technology leads to better spinal cord repair
Researchers believe they have identified a new way, using an advance in stem-cell technology, to promote recovery after spinal cord injury of rats, according to a study published in today's Journal of Biology.

Technology to improve learning for visually-impaired children
Supporting learning for blind and visually-impaired children in schools is the goal of a system that offers collaboration, data exploration, communication and creativity based on a common software architecture.

UNH scientists help NASA unlock global air quality puzzle
UNH research associate professor and atmospheric chemist Jack Dibb and research project engineer Eric Scheuer are currently on the NASA's DC-8 research aircraft among a select group of scientists taking part in the agency's Intercontinental Chemical Transport Experiment, or INTEX-B.

African American men paradoxically have fewer, less severe coronary obstructions than white males
While African American men are more likely to die from cardiovascular disease, they paradoxically have fewer cases of coronary obstruction than clinically similar white men, according to a new national study led by a Medical College of Wisconsin researcher.

Should we screen people for depression?
Screening for depression is unlikely to be an effective way to improve the mental wellbeing of the population, say researchers in this week's BMJ.

New software is next wave for net surfers
With an estimated 12 billion websites online, it's not always easy finding the exact site you want.

Climate change: 20th century the wettest in Pakistan for 1,000 years
Since the beginning of industrialisation the amount of precipitation in Pakistan has increased considerably.

Clinical decision support tool improves doctors' diagnostic skills in just one minute
Isabel, a web-based clinical decision support system, prevents diagnostic errors and improves the quality of treatment decisions made by clinicians.

Scaled-down genome may power up E. coli's ability in lab, industry
By stripping the E. coli genome of vast tracts of its genetic material - hundreds of apparently inconsequential genes - a team of Wisconsin researchers has created a leaner and meaner version of the bacterium that is a workhorse of modern biology and industry.

Arthritis drug might reduce fatigue in cancer patients
Researchers here have found evidence that combining a drug typically used to treat rheumatoid arthritis with chemotherapy might help reduce fatigue and muscle wasting that often afflicts cancer patients.

Blood clots may hold key to treating dementia
Spontaneous blood clots or debris from arterial disease in the brain (known as cerebral emboli) may hold the key to preventing or treating dementia, say researchers from the University of Manchester in this week's BMJ.

Infants can organise visual information at just four months
Research investigating attention in infancy has revealed that, at just four months old, babies are able to organise visual information in at least three different ways, according to brightness, shape, and how close the visual elements are together (proximity).

Fewer, less severe coronary obstructions appear in African American than white men
A study in the May 16 issue of the Journal of the American College of Cardiology shows that while African American men are more likely to die from cardiovascular disease, they have fewer cases of coronary obstruction than clinically similar white men.

Scientists discover possible link between oxidative stress and non-hereditary degenerative disease
The irreversible neurological degeneration associated with Parkinson's and Alzheimer's diseases may be the consequence of oxidative stress -- the imbalance of antioxidants and pro-oxidants in cells.

Tackle your fears without a therapist
30 million North Americans have some sort of medical phobia, according to Martin Antony in the introduction of his new book.

AAMRI welcomes Canberra's fresh commitment to medical research funding
Professor Suzanne Cory, President and Prof. Garry Jennings, President-elect of AAMRI, have welcomed today's news from Minister Tony Abbott and Senator Nick Minchin that the Commonwealth government will increase funding for medical research in this year's budget as a result of the sale of Medibank Private.

Boost to health and medical research funding visionary
A boost to medical research in next month's Budget, as foreshadowed by Government ministers today, is very welcome and should position Australia well for the future, Medicines Australia said today.

New properties of the very deep Earth discovered
Through novel experiments mimicking conditions at the core-mantle boundary, scientists may have solved a longstanding mystery about why shear waves move so sluggishly through clumpy patches known as ultralow velocity zones there.

Researchers tie metal's strength to three line defects
Lab researchers have discovered that three is the magic number when it comes to strengthening metals.

Programs for mathematically talented students receive grants
The American Mathematical Society (AMS) will provide grants totalling $80,000 to twelve outstanding summer programs for mathematically talented high school students.

Hormonal male contraception reversible after few months for all men
With hormonal male contraception likely to be available in the near future, results of a study in this week's issue of the Lancet highlight how such contraception is reversible within a few months.

Researcher predicts paradigm shift in heart disease treatment
As the obesity epidemic grows in the United States, the medical community is faced with the significant challenge of properly treating patients before complications such as heart disease arise.

MIT research offers new hope for Alzheimer's patients
MIT brain researchers have developed a

Immune response to HIV in the brain
A team of researchers at The Scripps Research Institute has shed new light on the molecular basis of problems with brain function in models chronically infected with an immune deficiency virus similar to human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), the cause of acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS).

Software allows neighbors to improve Internet access at no extra cost
Computer scientists at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have developed software that enables the sharing of high-speed wireless connections without compromising security or privacy.

Feinstein researchers identify intelligence gene
Psychiatric researchers at The Zucker Hillside Hospital campus of The Feinstein Institute for Medical Research have uncovered evidence of a gene that appears to influence intelligence.

Computers to save unique type of American red squirrel
Researchers from the University of Newcastle upon Tyne in England, working with the University of Arizona in the US, have developed a special computer model which in time will pinpoint the biggest threats to the rare Mount Graham Red Squirrel and help prevent it dying out in 30-years time.

Chamomile tea and lotion causing internal bleeding in patient on anti-coagulant medication
Researchers at the MUHC in Montreal have documented a severe case of internal hemorrhaging in a patient that drank chamomile tea and used chamomile lotion while taking anti-coagulant medication for a heart condition.

Wisconsin scientists discover a master key to microbes' pathogenic lifestyles
A team of scientists from the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health reports the discovery of a master molecular sensor embedded in the spores of certain pathogenic fungi that triggers the transformation from benign to deadly.

National Institutes of Health funds $13.7 million for Texas tuberculosis study
The National Institute of Health has granted $13.7 million for a five-year tuberculosis research project, headed by Dr.

Improving the patient informed consent process
Obtaining and documenting informed patient consent prior to surgery is of vital importance, but both the process and documentation of consent can be inadequate.

British public supports use of personal data for health research
The British public supports the use of personal medical data, without consent, for public health research, finds a study published on bmj.com today.

Patients at greater risk if mother has coronary heart disease
If your mother has coronary heart disease (CHD), you may want to make an extra effort to combat your personal risk, according to a study in the June issue of the American Journal of Preventive Medicine.

Charles Townes, Raj Reddy receive the 2006 Vannevar Bush Award
Charles Townes probably chuckles every time he sees the television ad with the cell-phone-carrying man asking,

Secret herb in tests to stop breast cancer patients' hot flushes and night sweats
Researchers at the University of Manchester are testing a secret herb in a bid to stop the severe hot flushes that besiege breast cancer patients on hormone treatment.

Rice T-ray lab makes unexpected plasmonic discovery
Researchers studying oft-overlook terahertz waves, or T-rays, report a surprising finding in the April 21 issue of Physical Review Letters.

UC Berkeley researchers create a biologically-inspired artificial compound eye
Using the eyes of insects such as dragonflies and houseflies as models, a team of bioengineers at University of California, Berkeley, has created a series of artificial compound eyes.

Britain must embrace psychological therapy for mental health problems
Britain must embrace psychological therapies on a large scale if we are to tackle our mental health problems effectively, argues a leading economist in this week's BMJ.

New weapons needed for the war on junk email
New form of email

Technique makes it easier to see mouse embryo in all its glory
A fast, high-resolution, 3D mouse embryo visualization technique developed by collaborators at the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio and the University of Utah will revolutionize the way birth defects and cancer genes are studied in animal models.
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