Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

June 26, 2006
How to build a better brain
With flashy toys, expensive classes and music compilations all promising to make your child smarter, it's hard to sort out the best way to help your child's brain thrive.

New study reveals pork rivals chicken in terms of leanness
USDA analysis reveals common cuts of pork, including pork tenderloin, are leaner than fifteen years ago.

GEO600 starts continuous search for Gravitational Waves
The joint German-British Gravitational Wave Detector GEO600 has now entered an 18-month run of continuous measurement.

Oxford Journals release preliminary findings from open access experiments
Findings from three studies into the effects of open access on authors, readers, usage, and citations have today been made available online:
Securing America's power grid
Iowa State researchers are developing a network of wireless sensors to monitor the country's electricity transmission system.

Lunar West Side Story -- the SMART-1 movie
This video was compiled with a sequence of images taken by the advanced Moon Imaging Experiment (AMIE) on board ESA's SMART-1 during a full lunar orbit, when the spacecraft was flying over the west 'side' of the Moon.

Mount Sinai School of Medicine receives prestigious AAMC Grant for Chronic Illness Care education
The AAMC awarded Mount Sinai School of Medicine the Enhancing Education for Chronic Illness Care grant.

Scientists accurately simulate appearance of sun's corona during eclipse
The most true-to-life computer simulation ever made of our sun's multimillion-degree outer atmosphere, the corona, successfully predicted its actual appearance during the March 29, 2006, solar eclipse, scientists have announced.

U of M research links coffee to lower diabetes risk
Researchers at the University of Minnesota School of Public Health have found drinking decaffeinated coffee may lower a person's risk for type 2 diabetes.

New HIV study identifies high-risk subgroups of adolescents
A new study from the Bradley Hasbro Children's Research Center and Brown Medical School unveils profiles of adolescents at the greatest risk for HIV.

Coffee intake linked to lower diabetes risk
Drinking coffee, especially when it is decaffeinated, may be associated with a reduced risk of type 2 diabetes, according to a report in the June 26 issue of Archives of Internal Medicine, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

Springer joins Katrina relief effort with eBooks donation worth more than $1 million
As New Orleans continues to rebuild in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, Springer Science+Business Media (, one of the world's largest science, technology and medicine book publishers, this morning announced a donation of eBooks to seven of the city's universities.

Study identifies factors associated with aggression in nursing home residents
Depressive symptoms, delusions, hallucinations and constipation are associated with physical aggression among nursing home residents with dementia, according to a report in the June 26 issue of Archives of Internal Medicine, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

Delft water-purification method promises radical improvement
Delft University of Technology research has discovered a method that could drastically change the way we purify water within a few years.

Key to early diagnosis of autism may be in the placenta
Researchers at Yale School of Medicine have discovered in the placenta what may be the earliest marker for autism, possibly helping physicians diagnose the condition at birth, rather than the standard age of two or older.

New strategy more sensitive at detecting cervical cancer than smear test
A new strategy could replace conventional smear tests as the initial screening test for cervical cancer in young women, say researchers in the July issue of The Lancet Oncology.

New UF tool measures heart implant patients' anxiety
A new tool from the University of Florida can help health-care providers identify which patients with implantable heart devices may need psychological services to cope with anxiety.

Severe hot flashes associated with chronic insomnia
Women who have severe hot flashes may have more chronic sleep problems than women who do not, according to a report in the June 26 issue of Archives of Internal Medicine, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

Study finds hydration lacking in older adults
Would you be surprised to know that sufficient fluid consumption has been associated with fewer falls, less constipation and laxative use, improved rehabilitation in orthopedic patients and a reduction in bladder cancer (among men)?

Vega's second stage motor roars to life
ESA's Vega small satellite launch vehicle has made a new step toward its maiden flight, late next year, with the success of the first firing test on its second stage motor, the Zefiro 23.

Pesticide exposure associated with incidence of Parkinson's disease
A prospective study of over 143,000 people found that those who reported exposure to pesticides had a 70 percent higher incidence of Parkinson's disease.

Mouse, frog and bird put Snail and Slug to different uses
Jackson Laboratory researchers showed that Snail family genes operate consistently in mice and birds in controlling the acquisition of differences between the two sides of the body.

New test predicts spread of kidney tumours
A simple, inexpensive, and reliable test can identify kidney tumours that are most likely to spread to the rest of the body, according to researchers in the July issue of The Lancet Oncology.

Pesticides exposure associated with Parkinson's disease
A large-scale, prospective study has shown links between chronic, low-dose exposure to pesticides and Parkinson's disease.

All work and no play: New study shows that, in the long run, virtue is regretted more than vice
The older we get, the more we regret not having more fun, says new study in the September issue of the Journal of Consumer Research.

For men with prostate cancer, treatment information fails to address fears
Men with prostate cancer make emotionally driven treatment decisions influenced by anecdote and misconception rather than consideration of clinical trial evidence, according to a new study.

Chest X-ray exposure may increase likelihood of breast cancer
An analysis of 1,600 women with BRCA 1/2 mutations suggests that exposure to chest X-rays may increase the risk of breast cancer, and that exposure before the age of 20 may be linked to particularly heightened risk.

Edinburgh researchers to probe memory loss in people with diabetics
Researchers at the University of Edinburgh are aiming to pinpoint why diabetes can cause memory loss and mental decline.

Why do we shake the saltcellar before sprinkling the salt?
The thesis of Iker Zuriguel was undertaken at the University of Navarra and has based on an everyday problem.

A better view
A new contract between the University of Miami and Spot Image Corporation will mean more, and better-resolution, satellite imagery of important environmental observations, including weather phenomenon, sea surge, and subsidence.

Carnegie Mellon, USDA report that Fe-TAML® catalysts degrade estrogenic compounds
Scientists from Carnegie Mellon University and the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) have found that a rapid, environmentally friendly catalytic process involving Fe-TAML® activators and hydrogen peroxide breaks down two types of estrogenic compounds.

Tracking Earth's wobbles down to the size of a cell phone
Earth's irregular, shorter term wobbles, lasting a week or so, have been difficult to study, partly because these motions are usually masked by those of more prominent wobbles, like the Chandler.

First compilation of tropical ice cores shows two abrupt global climate shifts: One 5,000 years ago
For the first time, glaciologists have combined and compared sets of ancient climate records trapped in ice cores from the South American Andes and the Asian Himalayas to paint a picture of how climate has changed - and is still changing - in the tropics.

Race may be risk factor for insulin resistance
Black women - even if their weight is normal - may be at increased risk for insulin resistance, a condition associated with diabetes, high blood pressure, and heart vessel disease, according to new research by Wake Forest University School of Medicine.

Mushrooms as good an antioxidant source as more colorful veggies
Portabella and crimini mushrooms rank with carrots, green beans, red peppers and broccoli as good sources of dietary antioxidants, Penn State researchers say.

Obesity is associated with less favorable outcome after radiation therapy for prostate cancer
Obese men with prostate cancer are at higher risk for treatment failure after primary radiation therapy, according to a new study.

Women surviving cardiovascular disease treatment in hospitals at higher rates: Healthgrades study
American hospitals improved women's survival rates for treatment of heart disease and stroke by an average of 9.54 percent from 2002 through 2004, according to the third annual HealthGrades Women's Health Outcomes in U.S.

Putting services at the heart of tomorrow's software
Service development in Service Oriented Architecture (SOA) is the point where small, functional services can be linked together to achieve some larger goal, and it is the point where computing could finally deliver the productivity gains and functional flexibility that it promised for so long.

Study reveals how ADHD drugs work in brain
Although millions depend on medications such as Ritalin to quell symptoms of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), scientists have struggled to pinpoint how the drugs work in the brain.

Alzheimer's pathology related to episodic memory in those without dementia
Alzheimer's pathology can appear in the brains of older men and women without dementia or mild cognitive impairment.

Underwater microscope finds biological treasures in the subtropical ocean
Scientists towing an underwater digital microscope across the Atlantic have found possible missing links to the global nitrogen cycle, which in turn is linked to ocean productivity.

Cell phone emissions excite the brain cortex
Electromagnetic fields from cell phones excite the brain cortex adjacent to it, with potential implications for individuals with epilepsy, or other neurological conditions.

Stealth radar system sees through trees, walls -- undetected
Ohio State University engineers have invented a radar system that is virtually undetectable, because its signal resembles random noise.

'Thieves of Baghdad' author to speak at Stevens, June 29
Marine Colonel Matthew Bogdanos, a prosecutor turned treasure hunter and American war hero, will detail the story of how many stolen Iraqi art treasures were tracked down and returned to the people of Iraq in a talk he will deliver at Stevens Institute of Technology, June 29, 6:30 p.m.

New WHOI deep-sea hybrid vehicle gets a mythical name
Nereus, a mythical god with the torso of a man and the tail of a fish, was chosen June 25 as the name of a new deep-sea vehicle under construction at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI).

Bacteria, beware: New finding about E coli could block infections, lead to better treatments
A newly discovered receptor in a strain of Escherichia coli can be blocked to avert infection, a finding that might aid in developing better therapies to treat bacterial infections resulting in food poisoning, diarrhea or plague.

Assisted dying: Should it be legal?
The latest version of the Assisted Dying for the Terminally Ill Bill in the UK parliament on May 12, 2006, was rejected for good reasons, says Baroness Ilora Finlay, a member of the Select Committee consulted about the previous version of the Bill.

Creating a window on 'oceans in motion'
Scientists and resource managers could soon have a highly detailed picture of marine conditions and the migrations of fish and ocean animals throughout the world, according to international experts convening a landmark conference in Canada June 27-30.

Stanford researcher links hot flashes to insomnia
A Stanford researcher has conducted the first observational study showing the link between insomnia and hot flashes while controlling for other factors that could account for insomnia in women.

Finding a cellular Neverland: How stem cells stay childlike
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