Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

November 28, 2006
Minimally invasive treatment helps infertile couples conceive
Couples struggling with infertility face uncertain odds when considering various treatment options.

Trained midwives and doctor-assistants can provide first-trimester abortions as safely as doctors
Government-trained midwives and doctor-assistants can provide first-trimester abortions as safely as doctors in developing countries, according to an online article published today, Wednesday, Nov.

DFG extends scientific cooperation with Brazil
Liaison scientists provide advice and support cooperative initiatives.

Health inequalities are a growing problem worldwide
Global health inequalities are substantial, growing and influenced by economic, social and health-sector variables as well as geography, a study concludes in the November issue of the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health.

Technology helps predict outcome of pediatric heart surgery
Georgia Tech and Emory University researchers have developed an innovative new technology that will help pediatric cardiac surgeons design and test a customized surgical procedure before they ever pick up a scalpel.

MIT chemist studies how electrons behave
Troy Van Voorhis likes to watch how things work. This curiosity led to his current research on the behavior of electrons and how they function in various molecular systems, including artificial photosynthesis.

Street robbery is not just for the money
Financial gain is far from being the only motivation for violent street robbery in the UK.

Spacer insertion may offer less invasive option for lumbar problems
Implanting a small spacer between lumbar vertebrae during a procedure called interspinous process decompression may be an effective and minimally invasive way to treat spinal stenosis, according to a new report.

SNM takes action to alter DRA provision for imaging payment caps
As a member of the Access to Medical Imaging Coalition, SNM joined 75,000 physicians in asking Congress to reconsider the deep cuts made in medical imaging services for Medicare beneficiaries as part of the federal Deficit Reduction Omnibus Reconciliation Act of 2005.

Violent video games leave teenagers emotionally aroused
A new study has found that adolescents who play violent video games may exhibit lingering effects on brain function, including increased activity in the region of the brain that governs emotional arousal and decreased activity in the brain's executive function, which is associated with control, focus and concentration.

Kourou prepares for P80 motor test
On Nov. 30, the P80 motor which is to power Vega's first stage will undergo its maiden static firing on the same test pad used to demonstrate Ariane 5's solid booster stages in Kourou, French Guiana.

The pain from fibromyalgia is real, researchers say
Many people with fibromyalgia -- a debilitating pain syndrome that affects 2 to 4 percent of the population -- have faced the question of whether the condition is real.

Groundbreaking Israeli-Palestinian academic cooperation goes forward
The First Middle East Symposium on Dental Medicine -- a breakthrough in cooperation between Israeli and Palestinian academics -- was held Nov.

Biolex reports potential for more potent, efficacious antibodies in Nature Biotechnology
Biolex Therapeutics published results in Nature Biotechnology demonstrating ability of its proprietary LEX System to produce monoclonal antibodies with enhanced in vitro potency and efficacy.

Review urges limited use of device to keep heart transplant hopefuls alive
An implantable pump can help heart-failure patients live and recover strength while they wait for a transplant.

Mobile mammography brings screening to more Native American women
Breast cancer mortality rates are high for some rural American Indian tribes, but now radiologists are using satellite technology to save more lives.

Last LHC superconducting main magnet completes the suite at CERN
CERN took delivery of the last superconducting main magnet for the Large Hadron Collider on Nov.

Study shows: Success is a family affair
Whether you go through life as a daredevil or tend to avoid taking risks depends a lot on your own pedigree.

Committee review of stem-cell fraud finds editors followed all rules
In handling fraudulent stem-cell research articles, journal editors went above and beyond existing procedures to try and verify the findings, but in today's competitive publishing environment, more stringent, less trusting safeguards are now essential, an independent committee has concluded.

Chronic back pain linked to changes in the brain
A German research team using a specialized imaging technique revealed that individuals suffering from chronic low back pain also had microstructural changes in their brains.

Online world as important to Internet users as real world?
Large numbers of Internet users hold such strong views about their online communities that they compare the value of their online world to their real-world communities, according to the sixth annual survey of the impact of the Internet conducted by the USC-Annenberg School Center for the Digital Future.

Why do black and Latino boys lag behind in math?
Recent public discussions have focused on female achievement in math, and an important study expands the literature to encompass racial disparity.

Telemedicine improves breast screenings for rural Indian reservations, U-M researchers find
University of Michigan radiologists piloted a program to improve mammography for rural Native American women using digital mammography and satellite capability to send images to radiologists in Ann Arbor, Mich.

Have yourself a merry 'nano' Christmas! Nanotechnology holiday gifts
Tell a friend you are buying them a nanotechnology gift for the holidays, and visions of Star Trek collectables or geeky electronic toys start to dance in their heads.

EPRI and Argonne National Laboratory to assess commercial viability of plug-in hybrids
The Electric Power Research Institute and Argonne National Laboratory, two of the nation's premier research organizations, announced today a three-year collaborative agreement to conduct detailed analysis of plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs) aimed at assessing the commercial feasibility of this technology for the US Department of Energy.

A stunning new look at déjà vu
A blind man suffering déjà vu. It sounds like a contradiction in terms -- but the first case study of its kind has turned the whole theory of déjà vu on its head.

TIGER workshop highlights project results
Water resources, the

MRI shows brains respond better to name brands
Your brain may be determining what car you buy before you've even taken a test drive.

News tips from the Journal of Neuroscience
The following articles are in the upcoming issue of the Journal of Neuroscience: Counting GABA release sites and active zones; ß-Catenin signaling in cortical precursors; Awake striatal spinal neurons -- sans ups and downs; and A clue to gender influences on depression.

Evolution of typhoid bacteria
Researchers investigate the evolution of the bacterium Salmonella typhi and warn of an increased spread of resistant strains.

Painkillers may threaten power of vaccines
With flu-shot season in full swing and widespread anticipation of the HPV vaccine to prevent cervical cancer, a new University of Rochester study suggests that using common painkillers around the time of vaccination might not be a good idea.

Magnetic needles turn somersaults
Scientists at the Max Planck Institute of Metals Research in Stuttgart have discovered a new mechanism with which it is possible to use weak magnetic fields to reverse tiny magnetic structures, called vortex cores, quickly and with no losses.

2 UC San Diego engineering students honored for leadership
Sourobh Raychaudhuri and Barath Raghavan, both Ph.D. candidates at UC San Diego's Jacob's School of Engineering, have received the R.B.

Public school kindergarteners post same or greater gains as private school counterparts
In the first study to examine differences in learning gains at the kindergarten level, William Carbonaro (University of Notre Dame) finds that publicly schooled kindergarteners post the same or greater learning gains as privately schooled kindergarteners.

Brilliant growth without gold
Max Planck researchers in Halle present new methods for manufacturing nanowires from silicon.

Noise-immune stethoscope helps medics hear vital signs in loud environments
A new type of stethoscope enables doctors to hear the sounds of the body in extremely loud situations, such as during the transportation of wounded soldiers in Blackhawk helicopters.

Tufts experts combine efforts to improve elementary science programs
During the next five years, engineering, education and social science researchers at Tufts University will combine their expertise and work with Boston-area elementary school teachers to test a new curriculum that uses engineering to improve how third-, fourth- and fifth-grade students learn science.

Microcapsules like it hot and salty
Max Planck scientists in Potsdam are developing a new method using salt content and temperature to control the permeability of microcapsules.

Mode of seed dispersal greatly shapes placement of rainforest trees
The apple might not fall far from the tree, but new research shows that how it falls might be what is most important in determining tree distribution across a forest.

Innovative cancer research approach features scientists working in a 'boundary-less' environment
World-renowned scientists working in the most promising areas of cancer research have come together to work as a team at one institution to accelerate findings for the prevention and treatment of cancer.

Night of the living enzyme
Inactive enzymes entombed in tiny honeycomb-shaped holes in silica -- nano-chambers that mimic conditions in living cells -- can spring to life, scientists discovered while attempting salvaging enzymes that had been in a refrigerator long past their expiration date.

Smoking changes brain chemistry
Chronic smoking affects nerve cells and alters the chemical makeup of the brain, according to research presented today at the annual meeting of the Radiological Society of North America.

Surgeons perform first robot-assisted procedures in weight loss, colon and gastric fields
UT Southwestern Medical Center surgeons are the first in North Texas to perform robotically assisted laparoscopic gastric-bypass and colon-resections surgeries.

Ancient predator had strongest bite of any fish, rivaling bite of large alligators and T. rex
Dunkleosteus terrelli may have been the world's first apex predator.

Measuring plant diversity, predicting vulnerability to invasive species
Rapidly invading plant species from other countries are affecting rangeland conditions and wildlife habitat, forcing more native plants into threatened and endangered status and changing natural wildfire regimes.

Schneider National named winner of INFORMS Prize
The Institute for Operations Research and the Management Sciences (INFORMS) today announced the award of its annual INFORMS Prize to Schneider National, the provider of truckload, logistics and intermodal services.

ASEAN endorses major initiatives to boost regional rice production
Implemented and coordinated by the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI), the new measures are aimed at three major challenges facing rice production in ASEAN: The environment; Getting the latest knowledge and information to rice farmers; and Developing the next generation of rice farmers and scientists.

Professor Lu Yongxiang receives the Harnack Medal
Professor Lu Yongxiang, president of the Chinese Academy of Science has been honored with the Harnack medal.

Never-before-made material similar to diamonds and ice, says UH professor
Thanks to a University of Houston scientist and his team's research, the chemical element germanium is enjoying a rebound in popularity.

Stormy days ahead for coral reefs
Scientists from the ARC Center of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies have produced the world's first engineering model to predict how much damage a reef is likely to suffer when confronted with an angry sea.

Study suggests morning pollution pall for Manchester commuters
Early findings from a new urban pollution study suggest that commuters in Manchester inhale their biggest daily dose of harmful traffic fumes during the morning rush hour.

Researcher gives robotic surgery tools a sense of touch
Johns Hopkins engineers are trying to help surgeons by adding such

Binghamton University researchers ready nanotechnology innovations for market
Imagine clothes that can regulate body temperature. Or sensors that can check sugar levels without drawing blood. 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