Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

July 05, 2007
Specific type of cell death may accelerate decompensated heart failure
Autophagy, a normal process by which cells eat their own proteins to provide needed resources to the body in times of stress, may paradoxically cause harm to hearts already weakened by disease, researchers from UT Southwestern Medical Center have found.

Coaching computer canines in clambering
The mutts are metal, the size of toy poodles, with four pointy feet ending in little balls.

Soil particles found to boost prion's capacity to infect
The rogue proteins that cause chronic wasting disease (CWD) exhibit a dramatic increase in their infectious nature when bound to common soil particles, according to a new study.

Paracetamol overdoses drop without package size legislation
The acetaminophen (paracetamol) overdose rate in Calgary, Canada, dropped by over 40 percent in the decade to 2004, without a change to the smaller pack sizes that were credited with overdose reductions in the UK.

Birds take cues from their competitors
The idea that animals other than humans can learn from one another and pass on local traditions has long been a matter of debate.

Self-monitoring helps reduce high-risk behavior among HIV-positive people
There are many effective, albeit expensive, intervention programs aimed at encouraging HIV-positive people to practice less risky behavior.

South Asian Scots have increased risk of heart attacks
Scots of South Asian descent are significantly more likely to suffer a heart attack than the rest of the Scottish population, according to a report published in the online open access journal BMC Public Health.

Insight into neural stem cells has implications for designing therapies
Scientists have discovered that adult neural stem cells, which exist in the brain throughout life, are not a single, homogeneous group.

New volume presents broad view of geology of Mexico
An English-language version of the Sociedad Geológica Mexicana centennial volume on the geology of México is now available.

Chickens also orient themselves by the Earth's magnetic field
Until recently, people believed that the ability to orient themselves by the Earth's magnetic field was restricted to migratory birds.

Engineered blood vessels function like native tissue
Blood vessels that have been tissue-engineered from bone marrow adult stem cells may in the future serve as a patient's own source of new blood vessels following a coronary bypass or other procedures that require vessel replacement, according to new research from the University at Buffalo Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering.

Holograms make for better vision tests
A new paper published in the July 1 issue of OSA's Optics Letters shows that researchers in Australia have created a new one-step test that uses holograms to diagnose the astigmatic error of the human eye, a key measurement in determining the appropriate prescriptions for eye glasses in patients.

Immune deficiency linked to increased risk of infection-related cancers
Immune deficiency rather than other risk factors for cancer such as lifestyle are probably responsible for the increased risk of cancer in immune suppressed populations concludes an article in this week's issue of the Lancet.

Hospital operators may fail to steer people with stroke symptoms to call 911
Nearly a quarter of hospital or

Cancer on the agenda of the Portuguese EU Council Presidency
The European Society for Medical Oncology is proud to announce that it is collaborating closely with the Portuguese EU Presidency on a key European meeting on health care issues, where cancer will be an important part of the agenda.

Fossil DNA illuminates life
Ancient Greenland was green. New Danish research has shown that it was covered in conifer forest and, like southern Sweden today, had a relatively mild climate.

AIAA to present awards at 43rd Joint Propulsion Conference
The American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics will present a number of awards at the AIAA/ASME/SAE/ASEE Joint Propulsion Conference at the Cincinnati Duke Energy Convention Center, Cincinnati, Ohio, July 8-11.

IOF Bone Appétit campaign wins prestigious communications award
The International Osteoporosis Foundation's Bone Appétit campaign, which highlights the importance of nutrition in building strong bones, has won the 2007 Chartered Institute of Public Relations Excellence Award for International Public Relations.

New heart disease risk score will help minimize health inequalities
A new score for predicting the risk of heart disease gives a more accurate measure of how many UK adults are at risk of developing the disease and which adults are most likely to benefit from treatment.

Canada's government announces $16.5M to Kettles Hill Wind Energy Project
The Honorable Gary Lunn, minister of Natural Resources, today announced that Kettles Hill Wind Energy Inc., a subsidiary of Creststreet Kettles Hill Windpower LP, will be the first company to receive funding under the ecoENERGY for Renewable Power initiative.

Oldest DNA ever recovered suggests earth was warmer than previously believed
A team of international researchers has collected the oldest ever recovered DNA samples and used them to show that Greenland was much warmer at some point during the last Ice Age than most people have believed.

Biomedical engineers use electric pulses to destroy cancer cells
A team of biomedical engineers at Virginia Tech and the University of California at Berkeley has developed a new minimally invasive method of treating cancer, and they anticipate clinical trials on individuals with prostate cancer will begin soon.

New drugs which target different steps in HIV replication cycle
The success of HIV entry inhibitors -- new drugs which prevent HIV entry into host cells -- are analyzed in a New Drug Class review in this week's edition of the Lancet.

From the corner of the eye: Paying attention to attention
Every kid knows that moms have

Stopping the HIV pandemic in children
Universal access to HIV testing and prevention of mother-to-child transmission programs are the most effective way of reducing the numbers of children infected with HIV, conclude authors of a seminar published in this week's edition of the Lancet.

Greenland's ancient forests shed light on stability of ice sheet
Ice cores drilled from southern Greenland have revealed the first evidence of a surprisingly lush forest that existed in the region within the past million years.

Do women really talk more than men?
Refuting the popular stereotype that females talk more than men, researchers at the University of Texas at Austin have found women and men both use an average of 16,000 words each day.

Protein's role in lipid absorption may be important to future weight-loss strategies
Researchers at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis have found that a protein absorbs lipids in the upper part of the intestine, and they believe its key role in this process may provide a novel approach for obesity treatment in the future.

Malaria-resistant mosquitoes battle disease with 'molecular warhead'
A team led by UT Southwestern Medical Center researchers has discovered why some mosquitoes are resistant to malaria, a finding that may one day help fight a disease that afflicts and kills millions of people.

International AIDS society conference, Sydney
The program of the International Aids Society Conference is discussed in an editorial in this week's edition of the Lancet.

Why liver cancer is more prevalent in males than in females
Production of a protein that promotes inflammation appears to be linked to the higher incidence of liver cancer in men than in women, researchers at the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine have determined in mouse studies.

Prion propagates in foreign host
Using baker's yeast and another fungus, a research team at the University of Illinois at Chicago and the University of Bordeaux report the first successful propagation of a prion from one organism to another.

Novel genetics research advances possibility of HIV vaccine
A pioneering collaborative study has discovered how the HIV virus evades the human body's immune system.

Which is the chattier gender?
New research challenges the notion -- frequently communicated in major publications, broadcast media and popular entertainment -- that women talk significantly more than men.

Wesley Research Institute study targets pharmacists to help diabetes sufferers
A new Wesley Research Institute project aims to make it much easier for people to manager their type 2 diabetes by using community pharmacists.

Etravirine effective at HIV supression: DUET trials 1 and 2
Treatment with TMC125 (etravirine) leads to better virological suppression than placebo as part of antiretroviral therapy in patients with documented resistance to non-nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors (NNRTIs), conclude two randomised trials in this week's issue of the Lancet.

How pain distracts the brain
Anybody who's tried to concentrate on work while suffering a headache knows that pain compellingly commands attention -- which is how evolution helped ensure survival in a painful world.

'RFID and Port Security' panel discussion on Capitol Hill
The Senate RFID Caucus is hosting a panel discussion on how Radio Frequency Identification technology can contribute to the security needs of US ports on Capitol Hill on July 11.

Stevens joins IDS Scheer's Innovation and Education Network
Stevens Institute of Technology has joined the IDS Scheer Innovation and Education Network.

Pre-exposure prophylaxis for HIV infection
Giving anti-retroviral drugs to non-HIV infected indivduals to see if infection can be prevented is being trailled.

Chemical in brain acts like a fuel gauge
The neurotransmitter norepinephrine can alert the brain to dangerously low blood sugar levels, according to a new study.

New imaging method clarifies nutrient cycle
Scientists at the University of Southern California have applied a nanoscale imaging method to a biological system, helping to clear up an old puzzle of the global carbon and nitrogen cycle.

Challenges to development of an AIDS vaccine
The scientific and policy challenges to the development of an AIDS vaccine are discussed in a Viewpoint in this week's edition of the Lancet.

MU researchers make discovery in molecular mechanics of phototropism
In a paper published in the Journal of Biological Chemistry, scientists at the University of Missouri-Columbia reported molecular-level discoveries about the mechanisms of phototropism, the directional growth of plants toward or away from light.

Tracing Parkinson's lethal mechanism
In the vast majority of Parkinson's disease patients, the disorder arises not because of a genetic defect, but because some external insult triggers the death of dopamine-producing neurons.

Executive stock options tied to higher fraud rates, says new INFORMS-published study
Management incentives consisting mainly of stock options strongly increase the likelihood of financial misrepresentation, according to a new study in a publication of the Institute for Operations Research and the Management Sciences.

High-risk patients need better guidance on what is and isn't a heart attack
Varying advice means patients at high-risk of having a heart attack are unclear about when symptoms are potentially life threatening and when they should call an ambulance, argue a group of heart specialists in this week's BMJ.

K-State researcher working on a way to make snack foods with extra fiber
A K-State professor is researching how extrusion processing can be used to make fiber-enriched flour taste like the kind used in most cookies and tortillas so that manufacturers can make a more healthful snacking alternative that consumers want to eat.

Sea anemone genome provides new view of our multi-celled ancestors
The genome of the starlet sea anemone is nearly as complex as the human genome, according to UC Berkeley and Joint Genome Institute researchers who have completed the first analysis of the animal's genes.

UF scientists work to develop simple bladder cancer test
University of Florida and University of Michigan scientists isolated nearly 200 proteins from the urine of patients with and without bladder cancer.

Research ends debate over benefits of butterfly defenses
Scientists at the University of Liverpool have furthered understanding of the relationship between predator and prey in an experiment designed to understand butterfly defence mechanisms.

Fame sells
What do Kylie, Paul Newman, and Celine Dion have in common?

Darunavir-ritonavir better than lopinavir-ritonavir in HIV-infected treatment-experienced patients
Darunavir-ritonavir should be considered as a treatment option across the range of treatment-experienced patients with HIV infection, conclude Jose Madruga (Centro de Referencia e Treinamento DST/AIDS, Sao Paulao, Brazil) and colleagues in an article in this week's issue of the Lancet.

Amoebae control cheating by keeping it in the family
Rice University researchers have shown how cooperative single-celled amoebae rely on family ties to keep cheaters from undermining the health of their colonies.

The Earth is smaller than assumed
Geodesists from the University of Bonn have remeasured the size of the Earth in a long lasting international cooperation project.

Exercise in elderly proven to improve quality of life
A new study appearing in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society compares the efficacy of three programs designed for reducing falls and improving quality-of-life among the elderly; education, home safety assessment and modification (HSAM) and exercise training.

$2 million Komen Award will fund research to reduce risk of breast cancer
Now that screening for genes that predispose a woman to breast cancer is routinely available, women at an increased risk are looking for ways to keep themselves healthy.

Study advances vCJD prion detection
Scientists have made significant advances towards the development of a technique that could be used to confirm whether someone is infected with variant CJD.

Study finds wives have greater power in marriage problem-solving behavior
Men may still have more power in the workplace, but apparently women really are

The new 'look' of superconductivity
Ames Laboratory physicist Ruslan Prozorov's discovery of the complex patterns in superconducting lead marks a noteworthy departure from the model first proposed by Russian physicist Lev Landau in the 1930s.

NIEHS researchers identify enzyme critical in DNA replication
In this week's issue of Science, researchers from the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences and Umeå University in Sweden report an important discovery about a critical new role that an enzyme called DNA polymerase epsilon plays in replicating DNA in higher organisms such as yeast and perhaps even humans.

University of Cincinnati receives $1.7M to research molecular treatment of brain injury
The National Institutes of Health has awarded $1.7 million to a University of Cincinnati scientist for molecular research that could lead to better treatments for brain injury patients.

Young adults not at risk of suicidal behavior from antidepressants
Antidepressants lower the risk of suicide attempt in adults with depression, according to a study published in the July issue of the American Journal of Psychiatry.

Stanford researchers find brain pathway of depression in rats
Researchers at the Stanford University School of Medicine have identified one unifying principle that could explain how a range of causes and treatments for depression converge. 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