Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

February 13, 2007
New cardiovascular risk prediction models developed for women
Researchers have developed a more accurate way to predict the risk of developing cardiovascular disease among women, according to a study in the February 14 issue of JAMA.

Researchers create new super-thin laser mirror
Engineers at UC Berkeley have created a new high-performance mirror that packs the same 99.9 percent reflective punch as current high-grade mirrors, but in a package that is 20 times thinner and easier to manufacture.

Be careful when using garlic to treat childhood ailments
Parents and practitioners should know more about garlic before using it to treat children.

Absence of health insurance coverage costs $1.47B in Maryland
Expenditures for the uninsured in Maryland totaled $1.47 billion in FY2002, according to an analysis conducted by researchers at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health.

Health of nation's water supply may be found at the head of the river
Recent decisions by the US Supreme Court have focused national attention on what bodies of water fall under federal jurisdiction for protection under the Federal Clean Water Act (CWA).

Springer gains leading orthopedics journal
Springer has announced an agreement with the Association of Bone and Joint Surgeons (ABJS) to publish Clinical Orthopedics and Related Research (CORR), one of the world's leading journals in orthopaedics.

U-M team: Genetic testing sheds light on degenerative eye disease
Genetic testing for eye disease is providing vital information about complex retinal diseases, especially when used to confirm a clinician's diagnosis, according to a newly published study of such tests that were conducted over a five-year period.

The colorful demise of a Sun-like star
A brand new image taken with Hubble's Wide Field Planetary Camera 2 shows the planetary nebula NGC 2440 -- the chaotic structure of the demise of a star.

UF study: World shark attacks rise slightly but continue long-term dip
Shark attacks edged up slightly in 2006 but continued an overall long-term decline as overfishing and more cautious swimmers helped take a bite out of the aggressive encounters, new University of Florida research finds.

NASA Goddard Space Science is the place for awards this season
This winter, the American Astronomical Society (AAS) awarded Dr. Neil Gehrels and the Swift satellite team and Dr.

Plastics in common household items may cause fertility defects
The contaminant bisphenol-A (BPA) -- widely used to make many plastics found in food storage containers and dental products -- can have long-term effects in female development, according to a recent study by Yale School of Medicine researchers.

Childhood cognition research underway at Rutgers-Camden
A new research laboratory at Rutgers University-Camden seeks to determine how children develop cognitive skills, how cultural heritage can shape psychological perspectives, and the role memory plays in making judgments.

Nagging spouse? You may have an excuse for not responding
New research findings now appearing online in the Journal of Experimental Social Psychology began with a professor's desire to understand why her husband often seemed to ignore her requests for help around the house.

DNA ends: Common tool, different job
Every time a cell repairs or replicates its DNA, the resulting single strand is wrapped up by a dedicated protein complex.

Men who haven't been victims less likely to believe child sex abuse claims
Some guys just don't get it. In this case, that commonly used setup line doesn't result in a joke.

The desert is dying
Researchers from University of Bergen have found that trees, which are a main resource for desert people and their flocks, are in significant decline in the hyper-arid Eastern Desert of Egypt.

Study looks at benefits of 2 cochlear implants in deaf children
Nature has outfitted us with a pair of ears for good reason: having two ears enhances hearing.

Call made for changes in women's heart disease risk-factor list
Johns Hopkins cardiologists are calling for an expansion of the criteria widely used by physicians to detect and assess a postmenopausal woman's chances of developing cardiovascular disease, the leading cause of death among women in the United States.

New protein super-family discovered with critical functions for animal life
Biologists have discovered a new super-family of developmental proteins that are critical for cell growth and differentiation and whose further study is expected to benefit research on cancer and the nerve-cell repair.

The chimpanzee stone age
West African chimpanzees have been cracking nuts with stone tools for thousands of years.

Instruction manual for creating a molecular nose
Max Planck researchers incorporate odorant receptors into artificial membranes.

Elucidation of the genome for diabetics with DNA chips
A CNRS team headed by Philippe Froguel (CNRS, University of Lille 2, Pasteur Institute, Imperial College London) and Rob Sladek (McGill University, Montreal, Canada) in a French-British-Canadian collaboration that accounts for about 70 percent of the genetic risk for patients with type two diabetes.

Cold climate produced by algae contributed to onset of multicellular life
The rise of multicellular animals about 540 million years ago was a turning point in the history of life.

Protein discovery targets antibiotic-resistant bacteria
A new type of protein discovered by Queen's University researchers may be useful in developing treatments for antibiotic-resistant bacteria, such as those that cause food poisoning and typhoid.

Researchers determine timing of administration of platelet-inhibiting drugs
Clinicians should carefully weigh the risks and benefits of when to administer platelet glycoprotein IIb/IIIa (Gp IIb/IIIa) inhibitors for patients with acute coronary syndromes undergoing invasive treatment, according to a study in the February 14 issue of JAMA.

The second humanoid robot in France
The CNRS, the LIRMM and the University of Montpellier, France, have just received the fruit of a Japanese French collaboration (JRL) -- two humanized robots.

News tips from the Journal of Neuroscience
The following articles are featured in the upcoming issue of the Journal of Neuroscience: OR Genes and Axonal Projections in Zebrafish; NGFI-A and Epigenetic Programming;

Embedded communicators: Bringing them along for the science ride
Often, it's like scientists are from Mars, and communications specialists are from Venus.

Is there a pilot in the insect?
CNRS and the Université de la Méditerranée in Marseille, France have revealed an automatic mechanism called the

Conference on systems engineering research at Stevens Institute of Technology, Mar. 14-16
The Schaefer School of Engineering at Stevens Institute of Technology and the Embedded Systems Institute in collaboration with University of Southern California (USC), present the 5th Annual Conference on Systems Engineering Research (CSER-07), March 14 to 16, 2007, on Stevens' campus in Hoboken, N.J.

Research at WPI could produce a new class of computer chip
A new research project at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) is aimed at developing an entirely new type of reconfigurable computing device, one that combines the speed and power efficiency of custom-designed chips with the low cost and flexibility of programmable devices.

Local range estimation in wild animals
A new class of computational methods have been developed to construct distributions of where such monitored organisms are most likely to be found in space and time using this data, and are much more accurate than previous methods when dealing with large sets of data.

Study shows how patients and therapists are 'wired to connect'
Empathy is well known to be an important component of the patient-therapist relationship, and a new study has revealed the biology behind how patients and therapists

Human stem cell transplants mature into neurons and make contacts in rat spinal cord
Human nerve stem cells transplanted into rats' damaged spinal cords have survived, grown and in some cases connected with the rats' own spinal cord cells in a Johns Hopkins laboratory, overturning the long-held notion that spinal cords won't allow nerve repair.

Ready when you are
Scientists from the Universities of Exeter and Glasgow today reveal how some females become sexually mature more quickly if they see attractive males.

Flu shot might also offer some protection against H5N1
The yearly influenza vaccine that health officials urge people to get each fall might also offer certain individuals some cross protection against the H5N1 virus, commonly known as bird flu, according to investigators at St.

AIAA Space Colonization TC recommends actions for implementation of lunar settlements
The American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA) Space Colonization Technical Committee (SCTC) has developed a position statement which recommends specific research, development, technology and engineering goals be implemented in order to establish a moon base by 2015 and open new frontiers to human space exploration.

MIT reactor aids study of potential energy source
For about six months of the year, bursts of a hot, electrically charged gas, or plasma, swirl around a donut-shaped tube in a special MIT reactor, helping scientists learn more about a potential future energy source: nuclear fusion.

San Francisco to host the AAAS Annual Meeting, Feb. 15-19, 2007
Baden-Württemberg will present its research landscape for the first time at the world's largest and most significant international scientific conference -- the AAAS (American Association for the Advancement of Science), which will take place in San Francisco Feb.

Poor people worse off following heart attack
People from lower socioeconomic backgrounds who suffer a heart attack come to the emergency department more often, are less likely to be treated aggressively and have higher mortality rates a year after the attack, says new University of Alberta research that has important implications for access to cardiac care.

DNA gives new perspectives to understand the mysteries of nature
Scientific breakthrough: What caused the extinction of the woolly rhinoceros ten thousand years ago from an area in Europe covering the coasts of the Arctic Ocean in the north to the coasts of the Mediterranean in the south?

Bats prey on nocturnally migrating songbirds
It was until now believed that nocturnally migrating songbirds, while venturing into the unfamiliar night sky for accomplishing their long, challenging transcontinental migrations, could at least release anti-predator vigilance thanks to the concealment of darkness.

From zebra stripes to frog eggs, UH talk teaches patterns with pictures
What do spiral patterns in frog eggs, a fibrillating heart, ocean eddies and a zebra's stripes have in common?

Enzyme critical for early growth of abdominal aortic aneurysms
Surgery is the only treatment for an abdominal aortic aneurysm, a weak spot in the body's main artery that dilates dangerously over time.

Research paper examines depression in 3 cities in Pakistan
A paper authored by two Memorial University faculty members will be published Feb.

Reduction of body iron stores and cardiovascular outcomes
The reduction of body iron stores through phlebotomy (blood removal) in patients with peripheral artery disease (PAD) does not appear to decrease the risk of death plus nonfatal cardiovascular events, according to a study published in the February 14 issue of JAMA.

Controlling the movement of water through nanotube membranes
By fusing wet and dry nanotechnologies, researchers at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute have found a way to control the flow of water through carbon nanotube membranes with an unprecedented level of precision.

Creation of an international research network
Cnrs president and general director, Catherine Bréchignac and Arnold Migus, respectively, and Hiroyuki Yoshikawa, president of AIST (National Japanese Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology), signed an agreement to create an International Research Network, known by the acronym ECSAW (Environmental catalysis for sustaining clean air and water).

NASA study finds warmer future could bring droughts
NASA scientists may have discovered how a warmer climate in the future could increase droughts in certain parts of the world, including the southwest United States.

A unique twin study on the increased cardiometabolic risk in obesity
A unique monozygotic twin study by Finnish researchers found that obesity, already in its early stages and independent of genetic influences, is associated with deleterious alterations in the lipid metabolism known to facilitate atherogenesis, inflammation and insulin resistance.

Study reveals value of schizophrenia-related gene variation
University of Iowa researchers have learned more about a genetic variation that is a small risk factor for a mild form of schizophrenia yet also is associated with improved overall survival.

2006 was Earth's 5th warmest year
Climatologists at the NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies in New York City have found that 2006 was the fifth warmest year in the past century.

Picture this: FSU professor's research could lead to vastly improved medical imaging
Magnetic resonance imaging, or MRI, has revolutionized health care, providing doctors with a highly accurate, noninvasive tool for diagnosing cancer, injuries and other maladies within the human body.

Migration played key role in HIV spread in South Africa
South Africa has one of the world's highest rates of HIV infection.
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