Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

June 29, 2006
Croatia becomes EMBL member state
Croatia has officially joined the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL) as the organisation's 19th Member State.

Sandia's ASCI red, world's first teraflop supercomputer, is decommissioned
On a table in a small meeting room at Sandia National Laboratories rested a picture of the deceased -- a row of identical cabinets that formed part of the entity known as ASCI Red, the world's first teraflop supercomputer.

People who smoke light cigarettes less likely to quit
People who smoke light cigarettes to reduce their health risks may actually be increasing their risk of continuing to smoke, according to a study conducted by University of Pittsburgh and Harvard University researchers.

Food-crop yields in future greenhouse-gas conditions lower than expected
Open-air field trials involving five major food crops grown under carbon-dioxide levels projected for the future are harvesting dramatically less bounty than those raised in earlier greenhouse and other enclosed test conditions - and scientists warn that global food supplies could be at risk without changes in production strategies.

Attacking cancer's sweet tooth is effective strategy against tumors
An ancient avenue for producing cellular energy, the glycolytic pathway, could provide a surprisingly rich target for anti-cancer therapies.

NJIT teaches high school students architecture box by box
A roof in the shape of a pyramid built from dozens of United Parcel Service (UPS) boxes took best design yesterday in a competition at New Jersey Institute of Technology (NJIT).

New process makes diesel fuel and industrial chemicals from simple sugar
James Dumesic, a University of Wisconsin-Madison chemical and biological engineering professor, reports in the June 30 issue of the journal Science on a better way to make a chemical intermediate called HMF (hydroxymethylfurfural) from fructose - fruit sugar.

Rutgers/EOHSI builds model to assess World Trade Center fallout
The environmental and health consequences of the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center have been the subject of controversy almost from the beginning.

One drink can make you blind drunk
Drivers beware! New research published today in Applied Cognitive Psychology finds that even having just one stiff drink can make you

New McGill research shows mice capable of empathy
A new study by McGill University Professor of Psychology Dr.

Florida Tech launches first student-built rocket from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station pad
The rocket, dubbed

Diabetes confers health risk equivalent to ageing 15 years
The effect of diabetes on health is equivalent to ageing 15 years, according to an article in this week's issue of The Lancet.

Drivers on cell phones are as bad as drunks
Three years after the preliminary results first were presented at a scientific meeting and drew wide attention, University of Utah psychologists have published a study showing that motorists who talk on handheld or hands-free cellular phones are as impaired as drunken drivers.

Novel connection found between biological clock and cancer
Dartmouth Medical School geneticists have discovered that DNA damage resets the cellular circadian clock, suggesting links among circadian timing, the cycle of cell division, and the propensity for cancer.

Journal of Nuclear Medicine publishes NCI-sponsored guidelines for using FDG PET
Publication of consensus recommendations for the use of positron emission tomography (PET) imaging -- with the radiotracer fluorodeoxyglucose (FDG) -- in National Cancer Institute trials will go a long way in helping physicians and scientists determine ways to manage cancer and promote drug development in the future.

ASTRO announces 2006 Gold Medal winners
The American Society for Therapeutic Radiology and Oncology is pleased to announce its 2006 Gold Medal winners.

Scientists uncover rules for gene amplification
Gene amplification plays an important role in causing cancers. Researchers at Georgia Tech have discovered that the location of a hairpin-capped break relative to the end of the chromosome will determine the fate of the amplification event.

Study shows lack of national consensus on teaching K-12 students about human-environmental impacts
Study of 49 state science standards shows more states mandate that science educators teach students about environmental impacts on society than the ways in which society affect environment; few teach about the ways individual actions impact the environment; and there is little consensus of how any should be accomplished.

Scientists find Antarctic ozone hole to recover later than expected
Scientists from NASA and other agencies have concluded that the ozone hole over the Antarctic will recover around 2068, nearly 20 years later than previously believed.

Researchers present Phase 2 clinical results for Acologix AC-100
Today, researchers from Acologix (Hayward, CA), the University of California (San Francisco),and the University of Connecticut (Simsbury) will announce the results of a Phase 2 clinical trial of AC-100 (also known as Dentonin), reporting that it met its primary goal of stimulating the formation of new dentin when applied directly to tooth defects, and demonstrating that AC-100 has a favorable safety profile.

New scoring system predicts gastric bypass surgery risk
Duke University Medical Center surgeons have developed a simple scoring system based on five patient characteristics that can predict which candidates for gastric bypass surgery would be at highest risk for dying.

Study recommends new tool to assess blunt abdominal trauma
Contrast-enhanced sonography compared with sonography and CT proves to be a useful tool in the assessment of blunt abdominal trauma, concludes a study conducted by the departments of emergency, internal medicine, and radiology at the University of Bologna in Bologna, Italy.

Studies show that rockfish thrive with offshore platforms as their home base
While some observers consider offshore oil and gas platforms to be an eyesore, new data shows they are performing a critical function for marine life.

Researchers find molecular 'brake' to cell death
Researchers at The University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center have significantly refined the scientific understanding of how a cell begins the process of self-destruction -- an advance they say may help in the design of more targeted cancer therapies.

Water fluoridation in New South Wales
Water fluoridation has been rated by the Centre for Disease Control as one of the Top 10 Public Health Achievements of the 20th Century.

Function of nuclear ribosomal proteins
In a paper to be released online ahead of print in G&D, Dr.

Patients' groups should declare pharmaceutical company funding
In the interest of full transparency, patients' groups should declare all sources of funding prominently, states an Editorial in this week's issue of The Lancet.

I Robot, your companion
Robotic technology is advancing apace and now a top team of European scientists and engineers hope to make the leap from single function

Increasing consumer preferences by manipulating memory
Consumer preferences for a brand can be increased over the competition by techniques used to manipulate memory, finds research published today in Applied Cognitive Psychology.

Study shows prostate cancer vaccine linked to longer survival
A University of California, San Francisco study has found that men with advanced, often untreatable prostate cancer who received a therapeutic cancer vaccine went on to survive longer than those receiving a placebo.

Rice scientists make first nanoscale pH meter
Using unique nanoparticles that convert laser light into useful information, Rice University scientists have created the world's first nano-sized pH meter.

Detecting prejudice in the brain
New imaging studies show that the brain processes social outsiders as less than human.

Eczema and asthma connection to be explored through $5 million grant
A $5 million grant to Indiana University School of Medicine from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease establishs an Asthma and Allergic Diseases Cooperative Research Center, one of nine such centers in the U.S.

Water fluoridation still a cost-effective preventive measure
Teams of investigators from the University of Melbourne and New South Wales Health today reported the results of a project investigating the impact of changing dental needs on the cost savings from community water fluoridation in Melbourne, Australia.

FSU Etruscan expert announces historic discovery at ancient site
Digging on a remote hilltop in Italy, a Florida State University classics professor from Tallahassee Fla., and her students have unearthed artifacts that dramatically reshape our knowledge of the religious practices of an ancient people, the Etruscans.

New fruit fly protein illuminates circadian response to light
Researchers at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine have identified a new protein required for the circadian response to light in fruit flies.

Link between income and happiness is mainly an illusion
Although income is widely assumed to be a good measure of well-being, Princeton researchers have found that its role is less significant than predicted and that people with higher incomes do not necessarily spend more time in more enjoyable ways.

American Society for Microbiology to host 46th ICAAC September 27-30 in San Francisco
The American Society for Microbiology will host the 46th Interscience Conference on Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy from September 27 - 30 in San Francisco, California.

Finland prioritizes agreement on the EU research budget and boosting innovation during Presidency
Finland has announced its priorities for research and innovation during its Presidency of the EU, to start on 1 July: concluding negotiations on the Seventh Framework Programme (FP7); and developing a broad-based innovation policy.

Catastrophic 'lake burst' chills climate
Ocean circulation changes during the present warm interglacial were more extensive than previously thought, according to new research by the University of East Anglia (UEA) and Cardiff University.

How cooperation can evolve in a cheater's world
Whether you're a free-loading virus or a meat-stealing monkey, selfishness pays.

Mayo researchers discover immune system blocker at work in kidney cancer
Mayo Clinic researchers have discovered a new and deadly player in the most common form of kidney cancer.

Lancet and Mexican government to hold meeting on health-system reform
The Lancet and the Mexican Ministry of Health are to host a Ministerial and scientific expert meeting on October 4-6, 2006, to aid health-system reform in middle-to-low income countries.

Mouse model aids discovery of novel melanoma metastasis gene
Researchers from Dana-Farber Cancer Institute have identified a novel gene that facilitates the spread of malignant melanoma, a life-threatening skin cancer, using a technique they say can speed the discovery of hard-to-find cancer genes.

Johns Hopkins lab scientists tame overactive CF protein
A team led by Johns Hopkins Children's Center scientists has identified and successfully tamed an overactive protein that plays a key role in cystic fibrosis (CF), a genetic disorder that interferes with the body's ability to transport chloride in and out of cells.

Boomerang-shaped liquid crystals focus of new study
A new class of liquid crystals, known for their

The ones that get away
Researchers funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF) have found evidence that particles of lead solder used in plumbing may have sickened two Greenville, N.C., children, in one case at a child's home and in the other case, at a private daycare center.

Planning for stewardship an important part of successful ecological restoration
Restoring degraded ecosystems around Seattle -- and giving them a fighting chance to stay healthy -- can be as much about PR as the right plants.

NIAID announces leadership for newly restructured HIV/AIDS clinical trials networks
The National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) today announced the clinical investigators and institutions that will lead NIAID's newly restructured HIV/AIDS clinical trials networks in the search for safe and effective treatments and prevention strategies, including HIV vaccines.
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