Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

August 29, 2006
Research team to analyze brain changes in schizophrenia
A Wake Forest University School of Medicine team will try to understand what differences exist in the brains of people diagnosed with schizophrenia or bipolar disorder and how the differences may be related to these diseases.

Partners deliver mining kit for Aboriginal communities
A new educational tool will help Aboriginal people make more informed decisions and take advantage of opportunities offered by the mining industry in Canada.

Study shows how cancer drug aids anti-cancer virus
Researchers here have discovered how a specific chemotherapy drug helps a cancer-killing virus.

NASA satellites can see how climate change affects forests
A NASA-funded study shows that satellites can track the growth and health of forests and detect the impact of a changing climate on them.

Chimpanzees can transmit cultural behavior to multiple 'generations'
Transferring knowledge through a chain of generations is a behavior not exclusive to humans, according to new research findings that for the first time have shown chimpanzees exhibit generational learning behavior similar to that in humans.

Malpractice concerns may deter Florida medical students from entering obstetrics and gynecology
The medical malpractice climate in Florida is discouraging medical students from pursuing careers in obstetrics and gynecology -- a trend that could further reduce patients' access to obstetric care, a survey by the University of South Florida College of Medicine found.

Consumer hygiene fears keep food industry on its toes
A major outbreak of E. coli 0157 poisoning in which 500 people were affected and 20 people died, seems to have led to improvements in the management of food risks in the retail and catering industries in Scotland, according to ESRC funded research at the London School of Economics.

Wiley partners with the International Society for Stem Cell Research
Global publisher John Wiley & Sons, Inc., and the International Society for Stem Cell Research (ISSCR) today announced they have signed a multi-year agreement to develop and publish Current Protocols in Stem Cell Biology, the first comprehensive source of high-quality methods for isolating, maintaining and differentiating embryonic and adult stem cells.

Variation in 3 genes influences risk of age-related macular degeneration
Researchers in Boston have discovered a new common, noncoding variant in the Complement Factor H (CFH) gene that is associated with age-related macular degeneration (AMD), the leading cause of irreversible visual impairment and blindness among persons aged 60 and older.

Stress significantly hastens progression of Alzheimer's disease
Stress hormones appear to rapidly exacerbate the formation of brain lesions that are the hallmarks of Alzheimer's disease, according to researchers at UC Irvine.

Analysis of Spanish flu cases in 1918-1920 suggests transfusions might help in bird flu pandemic
Transfusions with blood products taken from people who had recovered from Spanish influenza may have reduced risk for death and improved symptoms of hospitalized patients who contracted Spanish influenza complicated by pneumonia.

Doctors know best when it comes to treating chronic coronary artery disease
Medication, angioplasty or surgery? For some heart disease patients, there's no clear-cut choice.

AGU Journal highlights -- Aug. 29, 2006
In this issue of Geophysical Research Letters, the following articles are highlighted: Statistical causality tests provide evidence that climate change has increased hurricane intensity; Changes in the pace of the water cycle indicate that summer is bleeding into spring; The equatorial ionosphere is influenced by atmospheric tides and weather in the tropics; The equatorial ridge on Saturn's moon Iapetus: Formation through ring collapse?; Ice core records are used to extract Antarctic temperatures over the past two centuries, and Climate signals in corals might instead originate in coral biology.

Island ferries take on role of research vessels collecting data about Nantucket Sound
Ferries that connect Cape Cod and the islands of Martha's Vineyard and Nantucket are taking on another role -- research vessels.

Turning technology into a business opportunity
This week, 28 management school students are meeting at ESA's Space Research and Technology Center in the Netherlands to explore what it takes to turn technological breakthroughs into viable businesses.

USC research shows dogs and smog don't mix
A new study from USC researchers suggests that having a dog in the home may worsen the response to air pollution of a child with asthma.

Cassiopeia A -- The colorful aftermath of a violent stellar death
A new image taken with the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope provides a detailed look at the tattered remains of a supernova explosion known as Cassiopeia A (Cas A).

For low-risk women, risk of death may be higher for babies delivered by cesarean
For mothers at low risk, infant and neonatal mortality rates are higher among infants delivered by cesarean section than for those delivered vaginally in the United States, according to recent research published in the latest issue of Birth: Issues in Perinatal Care.

New polymer-coating process developed at Rutgers-Camden
Rutgers-Camden research employs innovative laser technique to advance polymer coating processes.

Ancient raptors likely feasted on early man, study suggests
A new study suggests that prehistoric birds of prey made meals out of some of our earliest human ancestors.

Energy ministers' conference focuses on energy collaboration
Canada's energy ministers concluded their annual meeting yesterday by confirming their ongoing commitment to improving collaboration between jurisdictions to better address energy issues of concern to Canadians.

Chronic alcohol exposure can affect brain protein expression
Researchers at the University at Buffalo studying the effects of alcohol on the brain, using zebrafish as a model, have identified several novel central nervous system proteins that are affected by chronic alcohol exposure.

Pension Web sites: Does your scheme have one?
Awareness of pension scheme Web sites is considerably higher among employees than the self-employed, reports research funded by the Economic and Social Research Council e-Society program.

March of Dimes: Drug to prevent preterm birth needs prompt FDA approval
The March of Dimes today urged Food and Drug Administration officials to promptly approve a commercial progesterone therapy that appears to prevent some premature births.

September-October GSA Bulletin media highlights
The September-October issue of the Geological Society of America Bulletin includes several newsworthy geology articles.

New summary of Dietary Reference Intakes
The Institute of Medicine has developed a new single-volume guide that summarizes key information about the Dietary Reference Intakes, evidence-based estimates of how much of each nutrient healthy people need at different ages.

Low birth weight babies with reduced occipital regional volumes at higher risk for visual impairment
Preterm infants with smaller occipital brain volumes are more likely to experience impaired visual function in early childhood, according to a study published in the August 2006 issue of Investigative Ophthalmology & Visual Science.

SMART-1 'star tracker' peeks at the approaching lunar surface
While ESA's SMART-1 mission is running on its last orbits around the moon before its planned lunar impact on Sept.

Meet Europe's top neurobiologists in Leuven, Belgium
From September 2-6, some 370 neurobiologists from 25 countries will gather in Leuven to address the state of affairs of current research.

Multiple sclerosis damage found in 'normal' brain tissue
The effects of multiple sclerosis (MS) extend beyond visibly affected areas into large portions of the brain that outwardly appear normal, according to a study appearing in the September issue of Radiology.

New study aims to uncover genetic factors for hearing loss
Researchers at the Translational Genomics Research Institute (TGen), the House Ear Institute (HEI) and other organizations have initiated a study to identify the genes and genetic interactions involved in age-related hearing loss (presbycusis).

Tiny shock absorbers help bacteria stick around inside the body
Bacteria have hair-like protrusions with a sticky protein on the tip that lets them cling to surfaces.

New device may improve vision and mobility for people with tunnel vision
Scientists at Schepens Eye Research Institute, an affiliate of Harvard Medical School, say a visual aid they invented promises to improve the visual abilities of people with tunnel vision.

Increase in severe poverty in the US has serious implications for public health
Since 2000, Americans have been getting poorer, and national rates of severe poverty have climbed sharply, according to a study published in the October issue of the American Journal of Preventive Medicine.

Springer and AOCS in publishing partnership
Springer has announced a new publishing partnership with the American Oil Chemists' Society.

More than just pretty faces for this brain region, says Stanford researcher
Stanford University researchers have taken the closest look yet at a region of the brain that was thought to be devoted solely to face recognition and discovered that this particular patchwork of neurons does much more: It also responds to such objects as cars, animals and sculptures.

NJ court decisions now online at Rutgers-Camden
Citizens and legal practitioners in New Jersey and around the world now may access key New Jersey and federal documents online, thanks to a free service provided by the Rutgers University School of Law at Camden.

Brain scan of nuns finds no single 'God spot' in the brain, Université de Montréal study finds
A new study at the Université de Montréal has concluded that there is no single God spot in the brain.

Preoperative brain mapping alters tumor surgery
By pinpointing the motor and language areas of the brain with functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), surgeons can target brain tumors more effectively while reducing the risk of damaging important cognitive and motor processes, according to a study appearing in the September issue of Radiology.

News tips from the Journal of Neuroscience
This release contains summaries published in the Journal of Neuroscience, including: TRPV1 and osmoregulation; Astrocyte processes and dendritic spines in motion; To burst or not to burst in the medial septum in vivo; and A KCC2 homolog and seizures in drosophila.

AKARI's view on birth and death of stars
AKARI, the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) infrared astronomical satellite with ESA participation, is continuing its survey of the sky and its mapping of our cosmos in infrared light.

Calling all teachers for Mars Rover model workshop at UH
The Sept. 1 deadline to register for the preparatory teacher workshop of University of Houston's annual Mars Rover Model Celebration and Exhibition is approaching. 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