Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

March 05, 2007
Studies force new view on biology of flavonoids
Flavonoids, a group of compounds found in fruits and vegetables that had been thought to be nutritionally important for their antioxidant activity, actually have little or no value in that role.

Teenagers with retail, service jobs at risk of injury, robberies, sleep deprivation
Despite federal regulations intended to protect them, many teenagers in the US use dangerous equipment or work long hours during the school week, according to a University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill study.

Optimism rather than despair
The Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG, German Research Foundation) and the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation will discuss the background and prospects for strengthened German-Russian scientific exchange at an upcoming expert meeting.

How eating less might make you live longer
Caloric restriction in non-obese people translates into less oxidative damage in muscle cells, according to a new study by Anthony Civitarese, Eric Ravussin and colleagues (Pennington Biomedical Research Center).

New device could revolutionize eye disease diagnosis -- creating eye maps on the high street
A new digital ophthalmoscope, devised by a research team led by the University of Warwick, can provide both doctors and high street optometrists with a hand-held eye disease diagnosis device equal to the power of bulky hospital based eye diagnosis cameras.

Cancer fighter in Nobel footsteps
The University of Queensland professor behind the world's first cervical cancer vaccine will receive one of Australia's most prestigious medical awards tonight.

National Science Foundation releases statistics on women, minorities and persons with disabilities
The National Science Foundation today released the latest statistics on women, minorities and persons with disabilities in science and engineering.

Whole body regeneration from a blood vessel
The unique Botrylloides whole body regeneration process could serve as a new in vivo model system for regeneration, suggesting that retinoic acid signaling may have had ancestral roles in body restoration events.

Dietary copper may ease heart disease
Including more copper in your everyday diet could be good for your heart, according to scientists at the University of Louisville Medical Center and the USDA Human Nutrition Research Center.

A 52-year-old woman with a hoarse voice and tingling in the hand
In a case-based article in PLoS Medicine, Salman Razvi (Royal Victoria Infirmary, Newcastle upon Tyne, United Kingdom) and Petros Perros (Freeman Hospital, Newcastle upon Tyne, United Kingdom) present the case of a woman who presented to an ear, nose and throat doctor with a hoarse voice.

Sunny days pose risk of 'flicker illness' for a few airlifted patients
A case report published in the current issue of the journal Prehospital Emergency Care suggests that light streaming through whirling helicopter rotor blades during medical air transport can cause symptoms ranging from nausea to full-blown seizures in a very small number of patients.

National addiction treatment leaders to meet at first NIATx Summit
On Monday-Wednesday, April 23-25, the Network for the Improvement of Addiction Treatment (NIATx) will host the first NIATx Summit in San Antonio.

The social life of honeybees coordinated by a single gene
vitellogenin gene activity paces onset of foraging behavior in worker bees, demonstrating how coordinated control of multiple social life-history traits can originate via the pleiotropic effects of a single gene.

New nanoscale engineering breakthrough points to hydrogen-powered vehicles
Researchers at the US Department of Energy's Argonne National Laboratory have developed an advanced concept in nanoscale catalyst engineering -- a combination of experiments and simulations that will bring polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cells for hydrogen-powered vehicles closer to massive commercialization.

Children in states with booster seat laws more likely to be appropriately restrained in car crashes
Children age 4 to 7 in states with booster seat laws appear more likely to be appropriately restrained during car crashes than children in states without booster seat laws, according to a report in the March issue of Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

New genetic mutations found that may cause cleft lip/palate
University of Iowa researchers and collaborators have identified new genetic mutations that likely cause the common form of cleft lip and palate.

Expert on extraterrestrial intelligence to visit Waterloo, Ontario
Dr. Jill Tarter, director for the Center for SETI Research, will be in Ontario on March 7, 2007, to take part in Perimeter Institute's popular monthly public lecture series.

MIT engineer works toward clean water, more
An MIT engineer working toward clean drinking water in Nepal describes in a recent issue of the Journal of International Development how people from developed and developing countries can work together to solve key humanitarian problems, ultimately meeting the basic human needs for security, broadly defined.

Howard C. Berg honored with Outstanding Investigator in Single Molecule Biology Award
US Genomics announced today that Dr. Howard C. Berg, the Herchel Smith Professor of Physics the Professor of Molecular and Cellular Biology and a Member of the Rowland Institute at Harvard University, is the recipient of the Biophysical Society's annual award for Outstanding Investigator in Single Molecule Biology, sponsored by US Genomics.

Children under stress develop more fevers
Children whose parents and families are under ongoing stress have more fevers with illness than other children.

Risk of HIV transmission highest early in infection
New evidence suggests that the risk of HIV transmission may be highest in the early stages of infection.

Largest physics meeting of the year, in Denver
The March Meeting of American Physical Society, the largest physics meeting of the year anywhere, will take place at the Convention Center in Denver, March 5-9, 2007.

Galaxy survey focuses on 'pre-teen' years
A massive project to generate an all-color map of the galaxies in a small area of sky is yielding new information about the universe's

UCI scientists reconstruct migration of avian flu virus
UC Irvine researchers have combined genetic and geographic data of the H5N1 avian flu virus to reconstruct its history over the past decade.

Weight loss surgery rate increases among teens, but use of procedure still uncommon in adolescents
The number of adolescents undergoing bariatric surgery for weight loss more than tripled between 2000 and 2003, but bariatric surgery in adolescents remains an uncommonly performed procedure, and teens represent less than 1 percent of patients having such procedures, according to a report in the March issue of Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

New guideline: Epidural steroid injections limited in treating back pain
A guideline developed by the American Academy of Neurology finds epidural steroid injections play a limited role in providing short-term pain relief for lower back pain that radiates down a leg, and do not provide long-term pain relief.

New success in engineering plant oils
Using genetic manipulation to modify the activity of a plant enzyme, researchers at the US Department of Energy's Brookhaven National Laboratory have converted an unsaturated oil in the seeds of a temperate plant to the more saturated kind usually found in tropical plants.

Finding the white wine difference
A CSIRO research team has pinpointed the genetic difference between red (or black) and white grapes -- a discovery which could lead to the production of new varieties of grapes and ultimately new wines.

Out-of-body experiences may be caused by arousal system disturbances in brain
Having an out-of-body experience may seem far-fetched to some, but for those with arousal system disturbances in their brains, it may not be a far off idea that they could sense they were really outside their own body watching themselves.

2-step process filters evolution of genes of human and chimpanzee
About 5,000 tiny differences play a key role in the evolutionary divergence between the human and chimpanzee genomes.

Ship excavation sheds light on Napoleon's attack on the Holy Land
A ship that sunk off the coast of Acre during the battles between Napoleon and the British navy is still shrouded in mystery.

Investigating the measles virus as a tool to kill multiple myeloma
Mayo Clinic Cancer Center has opened a new Phase I clinical trial testing an engineered measles virus against multiple myeloma, a cancer of the bone marrow that currently has no cure.

Nature Genetics and the International Society of Nephrology come to Danvers on World Kidney Day
Nature Genetics and the International Society of Nephrology will this week be hosting a jointly organized ISN Forefronts meeting: Nephrogenetics: from development to physiology, March 8-11, 2007, Sheraton Ferncroft Resorts, Danvers, Mass.

Study finds many older women also victims of partner violence
About one in four women older than 65 has been the victim of physical, sexual or psychological violence at the hands of a spouse or other intimate partner, according to a study done in two northwestern states.

Does tooth-brushing cause epilepsy seizures?
Tooth-brushing may trigger seizures in certain people with epilepsy, and researchers say lesions in a specific part of the brain may be a cause in some people, according to an article published in the March 6, 2007, issue of Neurology, the scientific journal of the American Academy of Neurology.

After scrutiny, preemie lung treatments turn out to be safe, effective
Preemies between 28 and 32 weeks are not harmed by a treatment no longer used to help their lungs mature before birth, according to findings of a study in this month's Pediatrics.

Genetic analyis for personalizing of treatment of lung and colon cancer, certain sarcomas
Genetic analysis has enabled the personalising of the pharmaceutical treatment of patients with cancer, enhancing thereby therapeutic efficacy and minimising possible toxicity.

Joslin researchers discover a surprising culprit in the search for causes of diabetic birth defects
Joslin researchers discover a surprising culprit in the search for causes of diabetic birth defects. protein makes it possible for high blood glucose to enter embryonic cells.

BMI not accurate indicator of body fat
Body mass index, or BMI, long considered the standard for measuring the amount of fat in a person's body, may not be as accurate as originally thought, according to new research.

ACS News Service Weekly PressPac -- Feb. 28, 2007
The American Chemical Society News Service Weekly Press Package with reports from 35 major peer-reviewed journals on chemistry, health, medicine, energy, environment, food, nanotechnology and other hot topics.

Low birth weight may predict depression in teen girls
Girls born weighing less than 2,500 grams (about 5.5 pounds) may be more likely to develop depression between ages 13 to 16 than those born at a normal weight, while the same does not appear to be true for boys, according to a report in the March issue of Archives of General Psychiatry, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

National panel led by LSU Chancellor releases report on Corps of Engineers
In a report released today, a national panel is calling for the US Army Corps of Engineers to restructure its project selection and decision-making procedures.

Global Health Institute joins with India to control deadly HIV/TB co-infection
Researchers at Emory University's Global Health Institute and the Emory Vaccine Center are collaborating with one of India's premier research centers in a push to enhance the immune systems of people infected with both HIV and tuberculosis.

White teens with high exposure to R-rated movies have increased risk of smoking initiation
White adolescents with high exposure to R-rated movies and fewer restrictions on their television viewing habits are more likely to start smoking than those with low media exposure, but this association is not seen in black adolescents, according to an article in the March issue of Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

Tundra disappearing at rapid rate
Forests of spruce trees and shrubs in parts of northern Canada are taking over what were once tundra landscapes -- forcing out the species that lived there.

Joint Principles of PC-MH released by organizations representing more than 300,000 physicians
Four physician membership organizations today released

Most children in US hospitals receive medicines off-label
Nearly four out of five hospitalized children receive medications that have been tested and approved only for adults, according to a study of hundreds of thousands of patient records.

Depression in moms with breast cancer may exacerbate related anxieties in their children
Mothers who experience bouts of depression during their battles with breast cancer may find that the effects reach beyond their own psyches to those of their children.

Third annual Templeton-Cambridge Fellowships awarded to 10 noted journalists
Ten prominent journalists from the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom have been selected for the third annual Templeton-Cambridge Journalism Fellowships in Science & Religion.

Childhood obesity may contribute to earlier puberty for girls
Researchers at U-M C.S. Mott Children's Hospital say increasing rates of childhood obesity and overweight in the United States may be contributing to an earlier onset of puberty in girls.

'Wingman' -- how buddies help alpha males get the girl
Cooperative behavior is a classic puzzle in evolutionary biology. Some cooperation occurs in close-knit family groups and helping kin with similar genes explains apparently selfless behavior.

Research identifies causes contributing to poor development of over 200 million children worldwide
Inadequate intellectual stimulation and poor nutrition, especially iodine and iron deficiencies, are likely to blame for hindering more than 200 million children in developing countries from meeting their full potential, says a Purdue University researcher.

Spiders: Chastity belts stop cuckoos in the nest
Male wasp spiders place a chastity belt on their partner while copulating, thus preventing the females from further copulations.

New study reports on the state of human happiness
An article in Current Directions in Psychological Science argues that happiness levels do change, adaptation is not inevitable, and life events do matter.

Medical, IT, engineering experts form advisory panel for electronic health record safety
A group of leading healthcare, information technology and engineering experts have formed an advisory panel to the Geisinger Health System-organized Electronic Health Record Safety Institute.

Depression more often chronic and disabling among blacks
Rates of major depression are higher among whites, but the condition appears more likely to be severe, untreated and disabling among blacks, according to a report in the March issue of Archives of General Psychiatry, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

Imaging 'gridlock' in high-temperature superconductors
Superconductivity sometimes can, it seems, become stalled by a form of

'Bone quality' is an empty term, say researchers
The idea of

NASA detects trends in rainfall traits from drizzles to downpours
Detection of long-term global rainfall has been considered a

Link found between teens' stress levels and acne severity
The largest study ever conducted on acne and stress reveals that teenagers who were under high levels of stress were 23 percent more likely to have increased acne severity, according to researchers from Wake Forest University School of Medicine and colleagues.

A clearer view on biology
The European Molecular Biology Laboratory has developed a new computational tool that makes images obtained with cutting-edge microscopes even sharper.

Annals of Internal Medicine tip sheet for March 6, 2007
The following articles are featured in the February 6, 2007, issue of Annals of Internal Medicine tip sheet:

UA researchers identify new adherence factor, Pili, produced by tuberculosis
Researchers at the University of Arizona College of Medicine's Department of Immunobiology have discovered that the agent that causes tuberculosis (TB), Mycobacterium tuberculosis, produces a new type of virulence factor called Mycobacterium Tuberculosis Pili (MTP).

Texas A&M study proves pollution from China And India affecting world's weather
Severe pollution from the Far East is almost certainly affecting the weather near you, says a Texas A&M University researcher who has studied the problem and has published a landmark paper on the topic in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

UBC researcher finds new way to treat devastating fungal infections
Devastating blood-borne fungal infections that can be lethal for HIV/AIDS, cancer and organ transplant patients may be treated more successfully, thanks to a new drug delivery method developed by researchers at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver.

Hypertension experts clash over TROPHY study results
When the results of a major long-term, multicenter study, the Trial of Preventing Hypertension (TROPHY), were called into question in two editorials published in the November 2006 issue of the American Journal of Hypertension (AJH), it was inevitable that an exchange of views between the study's supporters and detractors would occur.

Psychological and physical torture have similar mental effects
Forms of ill treatment during captivity that do not involve physical pain -- such as psychological manipulation, deprivation, humiliation and forced stress positions -- appear to cause as much mental distress and traumatic stress as physical torture, according to a report in the March issue of Archives of General Psychiatry, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

NIH researchers discover protein that appears to regulate bone mass loss, the cause of osteoporosis
An estimated ten million Americans suffer from osteoporosis, and another 34 million Americans are at risk of developing the disease.

Tests to reveal levels of depleted uranium in army personnel
UNiversity of Leicester scientists develop test used by UK Government to assess levels of depleted uranium in Army personnel.

Study examines genetic risk factors for Alzheimer's disease
Cardiff University researchers have found evidence for new genes involved in the development of Alzheimer's disease.

Neuroscientist records surprising brain 'dialogue' during sleep
A Brown University-led research team has, for the first time, recorded activity inside the cells of the hippocampus while simultaneously measuring activity in the neocortex.

Geologists reveal secrets behind supervolcano eruption
Researchers at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute have discovered what likely triggered the eruption of a

MMR, chicken pox vaccines work for preemies
Vaccines for measles-mumps-rubella and varicella, or chicken pox, are effective in extremely preterm infants, even though preemies' immune systems are not as developed as full-term babies.

Researchers at IRB Barcelona discover a new mechanism that regulates stem cell division
Stem cells have the extraordinary capacity to divide producing two very distinct cells: one retains stem cell identity and continues to undergo asymmetric division, while the other specializes for a specific function and shows limited capacity to divide.

Global Nephrology gathers in Rio
Incorporating a wide and exciting range of invited contributions, free communications, plenary and state-of-the-art special lectures,CNE's, WCN 2007 has something for everyone.

Miniature lab ice spikes may hold clues to warming impacts on glaciers
Tiny lab versions of 12-foot tall snow spikes that form naturally on some high mountain glaciers may someday help scientists mitigate the effects of global warming in the Andes, according to a University of Colorado at Boulder professor.

When God sanctions violence, believers act more aggressively
Reading violent scriptures increases aggressive behavior, especially among believers, a new study finds.

How can desertification control and development be reconciled?
A team of sociologists, hydrologists, economists, ecologists and pastoralists of IRD studied the interactions between local societies and their environment at different temporal and spatial scales in the Jeffara, while including the effect of public-sector interventions in desertification control.

Triptolide: A potential drug for polycystic kidney disease
A treatment for polycystic kidney disease (PKD), a leading cause of fatal kidney failure worldwide, has been identified by a research team led by Yale biochemist Craig Crews, according to a report in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Deakin University researcher unveils pregnancy mystery
A Deakin University study has unlocked one of the many mysteries of pregnancy -- how the trace element copper is transported across the placenta.

Brown scientists explain inception of perception in the brain
All of human sensation -- sight, sound, taste -- begins in the brain when information moves from the thalamus to the neocortex.
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