Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

February 28, 2007
New book brings chemistry to life with art, history, humor
A new book by a University of New Hampshire professor chronicles the beauty, mystery, truths, lies, and even humor of chemistry.

Researchers create new class of electronic components by bending zinc oxide nanowires
Researchers have taken advantage of the unique coupled semiconducting and piezoelectric properties of zinc oxide nanowires to create a new class of electronic components and devices that could provide the foundation for a broad range of new applications.

Female rice researcher wins international award for innovative biodiversity study in Thailand
Gisella Cruz García, 29, is a Ph.D. student in the Crop and Weed Ecology Group at Wageningen University, where her research focuses on the biodiversity of paddy rice ecosystems.

Three new honorary doctors at Karolinska Institutet
Each year, Karolinska Institutet's Board of Research confers the title of honorary doctor for services to the university or the field of medicine.

Manchester physicists pioneer new super-thin technology
Researchers have used the world's thinnest material to create a new type of technology, which could be used to make super-fast electronic components and speed up the development of drugs.

MU researcher to assist US Army in fight against infections
Improvised explosive devices (IEDs) are often to blame when soldiers are wounded in Iraq and Afghanistan.

New insight into brain disorders
The function of an enzyme in the brain -- strongly linked to a number of major brain diseases such as Alzheimer's, schizophrenia and bipolar disorder -- has been identified for the first time by researchers at the University of Bristol, UK.

Researchers run their fingers through wool looking for solutions
Researchers at Montana State University are trying to determine if a chemical treatment effective at controlling the African blue louse on cattle will also work on sheep.

Light wine intake is associated with longer life expectancy in men
Drinking a little alcohol every day, especially wine, may be associated with an increase in life expectancy.

New evidence that global warming fuels stronger Atlantic hurricanes
Atmospheric scientists have uncovered fresh evidence to support the hotly debated theory that global warming has contributed to the emergence of stronger hurricanes in the Atlantic Ocean.

Down with physics: Giant CMS magnet goes underground at CERN
Scientists of the US-CMS collaboration joined colleagues around the world in announcing today, Feb.

Tropical forests contribute to civil war
Would you look to tropical forests to find solutions for the international security problems that the world is suffering today?

Glaucoma patients at significantly higher risk for falls, motor vehicle accidents
Persons affected by glaucoma are over three times more likely to have been involved in falls and motor vehicle accidents than persons of the same age without the condition, say researchers from Dalhousie University in Canada.

Research on the color red shows definite impact on achievement
The color red can affect how people function: Red means danger and commands us to stop in traffic.

Fats into jet fuel -- NC State 'green' technology licensed
New biofuels technology developed by North Carolina State University engineers has the potential to turn virtually any fat source -- vegetable oils, oils from animal fat and even oils from algae -- into fuel to power jet airplanes.

Pluto-bound New Horizons spacecraft gets boost from Jupiter
NASA's New Horizons spacecraft successfully completed a flyby of Jupiter early Wednesday, using the massive planet's gravity to pick up speed on its 3-billion mile voyage to Pluto and the unexplored Kuiper Belt region beyond.

News tips from ACS Chemical Biology
Highlights from the American Chemical Society journal, ACS Chemical Biology, are now available.

Yale researchers named Ellison Foundation Senior Scholars in Aging
Two distinguished Yale scientists have been named Senior Scholars in Aging research by the Ellison Medical Foundation, a four-year award made to established investigators for research into understanding development processes that affect lifespan, and age-related diseases and disabilities.

Excessive TV viewing among young children is linked to poor eating habits
The more a 3-year-old watches television, the more he or she consumes sugary drinks, and extra calories.

Forsyth scientists make major discovery to advance regenerative medicine
Scientists at Forsyth may have moved one step closer to regenerating human spinal cord tissue by artificially inducing a frog tadpole to re-grow its tail at a stage in its development when it is normally impossible.

760 students will compete this weekend for $65,000 in scholarships in Moody's Mega Math Challenge
This weekend, March 3-4, more than 170 teams comprised of 760 eleventh and twelfth graders from the New York City metropolitan area will compete in the Moody's Mega Math Challenge.

Slowly does it as giant magnet goes underground at CERN
At 5:00 a.m. GMT this morning Feb. 28, 2007, the heaviest piece of the Compact Muon Solenoid (CMS) particle detector began a momentous journey into its experimental cavern, 100 meters underground at CERN, Geneva.

Rensselaer Professor Daniel Gall receives NSF Career Award
Daniel Gall, assistant professor of materials science and engineering at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, has been awarded a Faculty Early Career Development Award from the National Science Foundation.

Uniform language for describing genes of pathogenic and beneficial microbes
An international group of scientists has announced a major expansion of a lingua franca used to describe the activities of genes in living organisms.

Australian biotech leaders set to expand global connections
Two of Australia's leading life scientists have been chosen from a highly competitive field of candidates to take part in a new initiative by Merck Sharp & Dohme and Advance to boost the capability of the country's burgeoning biotechnology industry and gain increased health and economic benefits for the nation.

Complications following hip replacement more common in obese patients, especially women
A new study evaluated the effects of obesity on complications and outcomes following total hip replacements and investigated whether the results differed in obese women and men.

Neurons that detect motion rapidly switch between modes of data collection
Form does follow function, as far as visual cortex neurons tasked with perceiving action are concerned.

Widely used hepatitis B drug spurs HIV drug resistance
A Johns Hopkins study has proven false established medical practice that an antiretroviral drug widely used to treat hepatitis B liver infections was safe to use on its own in patients co-infected with HIV.

Distribution changes for new movie releases could threaten survival of theaters
The release of a new movie often generates quite a

Software patch makes car more fuel-efficient
A car wastes energy almost continuously. Accelerating a little less or a little bit more than the optimal performance can cause considerable loss of energy.

New pest plagues wheat producers
Wheat producers in northwest Montana experienced an unprecedented insect outbreak during the 2006 growing season of the orange wheat blossom midge.

New graphene transistor promises life after death of silicon chip
Researchers have used the world's thinnest material to create the world's smallest transistor -- a breakthrough that could spark the development of a new type of super-fast computer chip.

Fast and slow -- How the spinal cord controls the speed of movement
Using a state-of-the-art technique to map neurons in the spinal cord of a larval zebrafish, Cornell University scientists have found a surprising pattern of activity that regulates the speed of the fish's movement.

UCI biological physicist awarded Sloan fellowship
UC Irvine biological physicist Zuzanna S. Siwy has been named a 2007 Sloan Research Fellow, one of the most prestigious awards given to young researchers.

Revealing the machinery underlying the 'plastic' juvenile brain
Among the central mysteries of neurobiology is what properties of the young brain enable it to so adeptly wire itself to adapt to experience -- a quality known as plasticity.

New fMRI technology making brain tumor surgery safer
Brain specialists at the Neuroscience Institute at University Hospital and the University of Cincinnati have taken a significant step forward in their quest to treat difficult tumors while preserving areas of the brain that are responsible for speech and movement.

Modified ligament surgery improves outcomes for baseball pitchers, other athletes
In the largest study of its kind, surgeons at Hospital for Special Surgery have determined that by modifying a classic ligament surgery, they can return more athletes, such as baseball players, to their prior level of competition.

Yellowstone's quiet power
A 17-year University of Utah study of ground movements shows that the power of the huge volcanic hotspot beneath Yellowstone National Park is much greater than previously thought when the giant volcano is slumbering.

Calcium is spark of life, kiss of death for nerve cells
Oregon Health & Science University research shows how calcium regulates the recharging of high-frequency auditory nerve cells after they've fired a signal burst.

Enabling nerve regeneration means evicting the cleanup crew
Macrophages are the immune cells that engulf and destroy the debris of damaged tissue to enable the healing process to begin.

NASA's robotic sub readies for dive into Earth's deepest sinkhole
Carnegie Mellon researchers are helping a NASA underwater robot probe Earth's deepest sinkhole -- Zacatón.

Transportation study receives outstanding paper award
Got a train to catch? The walk to the nearest stop has been put under scientific scrutiny, looking at distances involved and the environment along the way.

Pharmacist-driven outreach lowers metabolic syndrome rates
Adults who met with pharmacists or pharmacy students during a community outreach and screening project about metabolic syndrome, returned four months later with lower risk factors for heart disease.

Biodegradable microspheres deliver time release vaccines, stimulate different immune response
A new vaccine delivery system using microspheres of a biodegradable polymer may not only reduce the need for booster shots in some cases, but also appears to stimulate an immune response that traditional vaccines do not.

University of Nevada scientists gauge earthquake hazards through study of precariously balance rocks
An exhaustive study by Nevada research team pinpoints several causes and indications of seismic threat in the West.

Appearance concerns related to depression in patients with rheumatic disease
A new study examined the relationship between physical appearance concerns and psychological distress (depression and anxiety) in patients with RA and lupus.

Impressive research in Dutch Electrical Engineering
An international evaluation committee has passed a positive judgment on the Electrical Engineering research in Delft, Eindhoven and Twente.

Symposium and exhibit recognize 100-year anniversary of Indiana eugenics legislation
In 1907 Indiana enacted world's first eugenic sterilization law. Over next 100 years approximately 2,500 of Indiana's most vulnerable citizens were involuntarily sterilized.

TU/e honorary doctorate for Professor Yasuhiro Koike
During the 51st anniversary celebrations of Eindhoven University of Technology on April 27, 2007, Professor Yasuhiro Koike of Keio University in Japan will receive an honorary doctorate.

Internet source of behavioral health information, not counseling
A national survey of commercial health plans has found that most plans provide online information regarding mental health and substance abuse but few provide clinical services such as counseling via the Internet.

Stress-related adult disease may originate in fetal development
According to a review in Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences, evidence is mounting that lifelong stress-related conditions such as depression and chronic pain may be linked to fetal growth and timing of delivery.

NYU study shows diminished sense of moral outrage key to holding view that world is fair, just
People who see the world as essentially fair can just maintain this perception through a diminished sense of moral outrage, according to a study by researchers in New York University's Department of Psychology.

Podcast -- Implications for health, safety and the environment of the nanotech revolution
This podcast examines the issues associated with the nanotechnology revolution, specifically the effects on health, safety and the environment.

SIAM/ACM Prize in Computational Science and Engineering Award
The 2007 SIAM/ACM Prize in Computational Science and Engineering was awarded to Dr.

Genome sequence shows what makes bacteria dangerous for troops in Iraq
Researchers at Yale have identified multiple pathogenic

Review of 1918 pandemic flu studies offers more questions than answers
Scientists and public health officials, wary that the H5N1 avian influenza virus could trigger an influenza pandemic, have looked to past pandemics, including the 1918

Accentia Biopharmaceuticals acquires worldwide exclusive license to Revimmune
In clinical studies for the lead indication of multiple sclerosis (MS), Revimmune improves function in most patients and stops progression in over 90 percent of cases refractory to standard therapies.

Heart attacks can give couples a new lease of life, says study
In-depth interviews reveal three distinct patterns of dealing with heart attacks.

USC study shows states can succeed in insuring kids
In the absence of federal and state reform offering universal health care coverage, local coalitions can make a big difference for children without health insurance.

Iron in Northwest rivers fuels phytoplankton, fish populations
A new study suggests that the iron-rich winter runoff from Pacific Northwest streams and rivers, combined with the wide continental shelf, form a potent mechanism for fertilizing the nearshore Pacific Ocean, leading to robust phytoplankton production and fisheries.

Deconstructing brain wiring, one neuron at a time
Researchers have long said they won't be able to understand the brain until they can put together a

Schools help hold the line against childhood obesity, study says
Schools do more to help prevent obesity among children than they do to cause it, new research suggests.

Comparison of immune response to 1918 and H5N1 influeza viruses shows similarities
A comparison of the 1918 Spanish influenza and the H5N1 avian influenza viruses suggests that while the two viruses appear to trigger a similar abnormal immune response in animal models, there are distinct differences.

Choline shows promise in reducing behavioral effects associated with prenatal alcohol exposure
Giving choline to infants who were exposed in the womb to alcohol may mitigate some of the resulting problems.

New study finds antibiotic vancomycin may trigger dangerously low platelet count
The antibiotic vancomycin often used in intensive care units is considered the drug of choice for the treatment of staphylococci (staph) infections that are resistant to most other antibiotics.

Prostate brachytherapy causes fewer side effects than surgery
Men with prostate cancer have a slightly better long-term side effects profile with radiation seed implants than they do with surgery, according to a study released today in the International Journal for Radiation Oncology, Biology, Physics, the official journal of Astro. 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