Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

October 02, 2007
NSF awards MU $2.16M for intraplate earthquake studies
A project led by a group of University of Missouri-Columbia researchers has been awarded $2.16 million from the National Science Foundation to bolster the collaborative efforts between the US and China in determining the cause of intraplate earthquakes that have occurred in both countries.

Extreme star cluster in new Hubble images
The gigantic nebula NGC 3603 hosts one of the most prominent, massive, young clusters in the Milky Way.

New clinical guideline for low-back pain
A summary of evidence on the diagnosis, treatment of low-back prompts the American Pain Society and the American College of Physicians to issue a new treatment guideline.

M. D. Anderson-Prevention poll finds women can do more to prevent cancer ... but aren't
When it comes to preventing cancer, women believe they're doing more than they actually are.

FDA approves knee-injury device for humans
A new knee-surgery device investigated by University of Missouri-Columbia researchers that will help to repair meniscus tears, which were previously defined as irreparable, has been approved by the FDA for use in humans.

Tamiflu survives sewage treatment
Swedish researchers have discovered that oseltamivir (Tamiflu), an antiviral drug used to prevent and mitigate influenza infections, is not removed or degraded during normal sewage treatment.

HIV-positive employees face job loss and workplace discrimination
HIV-positive employees face unemployment and workplace discrimination, indicates a study published ahead of print in Occupational and Environmental Medicine.

How basil gets its zing
The blend of aromatic essential oils that gives fresh basil leaves their characteristic warm and sweet aroma is well characterized but not much is known about the enzymatic machinery manufacturing the odiferous mix.

Drug has ability to cure type of leukemia
In people with chronic myeloid leukemia, the drug Imatinib has been shown to drive cancer into remission, but the disease often returns when treatment is stopped.

Extreme star cluster bursts into life in new Hubble image
The NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope has captured a spectacular image of NGC 3603, a giant nebula hosting one of the most prominent massive young clusters in the Milky Way, thus supplying a prime template for star formation studies.

NRL instrument on NASA satellite sees solar hurricane detach comet tail
Scientists at the Naval Research Laboratory report they have captured the first images of a collision between a comet and a solar hurricane.

Vaginal progesterone gel may improve infant outcomes and...
A study just published in the October issue of The White Journal supports findings from last month's New England Journal of Medicine that progesterone reduces preterm birth among women with a short cervix.

Titan's icy climate mimics Earth's tropics
If space travelers ever visit Saturn's largest moon, they will find a tropical world where temperatures plunge to minus 274 degrees Fahrenheit, methane rains from the sky and dunes of ice or tar cover the planet's most arid regions.

New projections for Australia's changing climate
The most comprehensive assessment to date of Australia's climate was jointly released today by the Bureau of Meteorology and CSIRO at GREENHOUSE 2007 in Sydney.

A greenhouse in order to study the impact of climate change on plants
The University of Navarra has installed a thermal gradient greenhouse in order to study the impact of climate change on plants.

Nanotechnology: not just for geeks
More than 60 percent of the 580 products in a newly-updated inventory of nanotechnology consumer products are such 'un-geeky' items as sports equipment and clothing.

Low doses of a red wine ingredient fight diabetes in mice
Even relatively low doses of resveratrol -- a chemical found in the skins of red grapes and in red wine -- can improve the sensitivity of mice to the hormone insulin, according to a report in the October issue of Cell Metabolism, a Cell Press publication.

New study sheds light on Galápagos hawk evolutionary history
Scientists at the University of Missouri-St. Louis used DNA sequences from feather lice to study how island populations of their host, the Galápagos Hawk might have colonized the Galápagos islands, home to the endangered and declining raptor.

Black gay men, lesbians, have fewer mental disorders than whites, says Mailman School of PH study
Among lesbian, gay and bisexuals, blacks and Latinos do not have more mental disorders than whites.

MIT Holding, Inc. signs partnership agreement with Georgia Southern University
New signed agreement with allow Georgia Southern University and MIT Holding, Inc., to research products to stop the spread of infectious diseases.

Specialized bath products for allergic eczema of 'questionable' value
Specialized bath products to relieve the symptoms of allergic (atopic) eczema are of

PhysMath Central takes off with a big bang
PhysMath Central, BioMed Central's open access publishing platform for the fields of physics, mathematics and computer science, today announced that PMC Physics A, the first PhysMath Central journal, has published its first research articles.

On-screen smoking in movies linked to young adult smoking behavior
New study findings show that exposure to on-screen smoking in movies has a strong correlation with beginning to smoke or becoming established smokers among young adults 18-25, a critical age group for lifelong smoking behavior.

Carnegie Mellon researchers fight phishing attacks with phishing tactics
Early findings by Carnegie Mellon University researchers suggest that people who are suckered by a spoof email into visiting a counterfeit Web site are also people who are ready to learn their lesson about

New strategies with greater antitumorous efficacy
One of the biggest problems in the current treatment of cancer is that the agents that are efficacious in the destruction of tumorous cells are, at the same time, extremely toxic for the rest of the healthy cells and tissues of the patient.

Iowa State engineer develops technology to quickly find leaks in spacecraft
A research team led by Dale Chimenti, an Iowa State University professor of aerospace engineering, has developed a low-cost sensor that can help astronauts detect leaks on spacecraft such as the International Space Station.

Dietary calcium could possibly prevent the spread of breast cancer to bone
A strong skeleton is less likely to be penetrated by metastasizing cancer cells, so a fortified glass of milk might be the way to block cancer's spread, according to researchers at the ANZAC Research Institute in Concord, Australia.

National Academies advisory: Critical minerals and national defense stockpile
The United States uses more than 7.5 trillion pounds of nonfuel minerals each year to produce everyday items such as mobile phones and cars.

UCLA engineering model advances prospect of alternative-fuel vehicles
UCLA engineering researchers have developed a hydrogen storage model that could speed the develpment of alternative fuel vehicles.

Major gender gap in use of life-saving heart device
Women who might have benefited from the use of an implantable heart monitor following a cardiac arrest were far less likely than men to have one prescribed, according to experts at the Duke University Medical Center.

Universities partner with national parks to give historic sites energy makeovers
Rochester Institute of Technology professor James Winebrake recently won a $350,000 grant from the National Park Service to continue fostering energy-related projects through the University-National Park Energy Partnership Program, which he co-founded in 1997.

UAB wins $5.7M neurofibromatosis grant
A team of UAB geneticists, doctors and biostatisticians has received $5.7 million from the US Department of Defense to study and test new treatments for neurofibromatosis, or NF.

News tips from the Journal of Neuroscience
The following papers are in the upcoming issue of the Journal of Neuroscience:

Menace in a bottle
After the plot to blow up trans-Atlantic airlines with liquid explosives was uncovered in London in August 2006, there has been pressure on the airline industry, and Homeland Security, to find new ways to not only detect liquids in baggage and on airline passengers, but also to figure out what they are.

Research shows how genetic mutation causes epilepsy in infants
New research from the Howard Florey Institute in Melbourne has shown why mutation in a single gene can cause epilepsy in infants.

Drug has ability to cure type of leukemia
In people with chronic myeloid leukemia, the drug imatinib has been shown to drive cancer into remission, but the disease often returns when treatment is stopped.

Even without math, ancients engineered sophisticated machines
Move over, Archimedes. A researcher at Harvard University is finding that ancient Greek craftsmen were able to engineer sophisticated machines without necessarily understanding the mathematical theory behind their construction.

FSU physicist shining a light on mysterious 'dark matter'
We've all been taught that our bodies, the Earth and in fact all matter in the universe is composed of tiny building blocks called atoms.

Creatine in addition to exercise enhances strength in older adults
While exercise is a proven way to prevent the loss of muscle mass, a new study led by McMaster researcher Dr.

MU researchers studying model to learn why certain cancers become resistant to drugs
MU researchers are studying a model organism called

Carbon dioxide triggers inborn distress
PLoS ONE publishes a study showing that inhalation of carbon dioxide triggers emotional distress and a panic response in healthy individuals.

Are women being scared away from math, science, and engineering fields?
Have you ever felt outnumbered? Like there are just not that many people like you around?

First significant genetic finding in severe PMS, or PMDD
The first significant genetic finding in premenstrual dysphoric disorder has now been reported.

New study shows Concord grape juice has a heart-healthy effect not yet reported with red wine
Laboratory research just presented at the WINEHEALTH 2007 conference in Bordeaux, France, showed that Concord grape juice stimulated an arterial relaxation effect in a similar fashion to red wine.

Should schoolgirls be vaccinated against cancer virus?
The routine vaccination of children against human papilloma virus -- the first adolescent vaccine against a sexually transmitted infection -- will be discussed at the National Cancer Research Institute conference in Birmingham today Tues., Oct.

Software 'chipper' speeds debugging
Computer scientists at UC-Davis have developed a technique to speed up program debugging by automatically 'chipping' the software into smaller pieces so that bugs can be isolated more easily.

Dogs that bite children have often not bitten kids before
Dogs that bite children have often not bitten kids before, but they tend to have underlying behavioral or medical problems, indicates research in the journal Injury Prevention.

USP awards verified mark to Dr. Reddy's Laboratories, Ltd. ingredients
The United States Pharmacopeial Convention today announced the award of a specific verification mark, shown at the conclusion of this announcement, to two drug substances manufactured by Dr.

K-State Veterinary Lab routinely tests for bluetongue virus
Livestock producers in the US should be cautious but not overly fearful of bluetongue virus, according to a veterinary laboratory director at Kansas State University.

Patients over age 60 do well after liver transplantation
Patients who undergo liver transplantation at age 60 or above have one-year and five-year survival rates similar to those of younger patients and they experience fewer episodes of rejection.

ICDs underused in women, minorities with heart failure
Many Americans hospitalized for heart failure are coming up short when it comes to getting the therapy they need -- especially women and minorities, say researchers at Duke University Medical Center.

ACE inhibitor may help improve cardiac complications from Marfan syndrome
Preliminary research suggests that use of the ACE inhibitor perindopril, along with a beta-blocker, may help reduce cardiac measures such as aortic stiffness and dilation that are associated with the cardiac complications of Marfan syndrome, according to an article in the Oct.

New research into plant colors sheds light on antioxidants
Scientists have made an important advance in understanding the genetic processes that give flowers, leaves and plants their bright colors.

Avoiding sweets may spell a longer life, study in worms suggests
A new study in the October issue of Cell Metabolism, a publication of Cell Press, reveals that worms live to an older age when they are unable to process the simple sugar glucose.

Using additional biopsy-scoring data may help determine prostate cancer prognosis
Men with certain scores and patterns based on prostate cancer biopsy were found to be at higher risk of PSA-failure, suggesting that this measurement could help predict the risk of prostate cancer recurrence, according to preliminary research published in the Oct.

Algorithms to reanimate the heart
When an adult suffers a cardiorespiratory arrest the rapid application of an electrical discharge with a defibrillator can avoid sudden death in many cases.

New transfusion rules restrict donations from previously pregnant women
New recommendations that restrict women who have previously been pregnant from donating platelets and plasma will have a major impact on the blood supply.

MU researcher presents origin-of-life theory for young Earth
Scientists have been trying to find the origin of Earth's adenine and where else it might exist in the solar system.

High-performance motorized wheelchairs
Tekniker-Ik4, with the help of the Benevolent Fund of the Kutxa Bank, has created the NOA prototype of a wheelchair with state-of-the-art specifications.

Fetal cell 'transplant' could be a hidden link between childbirth and reduced risk of breast cancer
Some benefits of motherhood are intangible, but one has been validated through biostatistical research: women who bear children have a reduced risk of developing breast cancer.

The 'MIP-MAP' game: Indian bug is the ancestor of Crohn's disease pathogen
An Indian team of researchers led by Seyed E. Hasnain of the Institute of Life Sciences, University of Hyderabad, India has found that a seemingly unknown mycobacterial organism Mycobacterium indicus pranii could be the earliest ancestor of the 'generalist' branch of mycobacterial pathogens.

Canada's new government invests in largest wind energy project in the province of Quebec
The Honorable Gary Lunn, minister of natural resources, today announced that the Baie-des-Sables Wind Energy Project, completed by Cartier Wind Energy, will receive more than $31 million, over 10 years, under the ecoENERGY for Renewable Power initiative.

Genetic 'roadblock' hoped to inspire future type 2 diabetes research
A team of Mount Sinai Hospital researchers has found that a 'genetic roadblock' identified in a recent study could pave the way toward novel treatments for type 2 diabetes.

Thumb-size microsystem enables cell culture and incubation
Integrating silicon microchip technology with a network of tiny fluid channels, some thinner than a human hair, researchers have developed a thumb-size micro-incubator to culture living cells for lab tests.

Woods Hole Research Center to lead undergraduate initiative in the Siberian Arctic
A new initiative at the Woods Hole Research Center known as the Polaris Project, led by Associate Scientist Max Holmes, will train future leaders in arctic research and education, and inform the public, both of which are essential given the rapid and profound changes underway in the Arctic in response to global warming.

Cancer researchers seek safe reduction of radiotherapy
University of Manchester scientists will discuss their research aimed at reducing the side effects of radiotherapy without decreasing its effectiveness at the National Cancer Research Institute conference in Birmingham today Tuesday, Oct.

Vanderbilt nets brain gene research center
Vanderbilt University has been awarded a $10 million grant from the National Institute of Mental Health to establish a Silvio O.

2 young researchers work on an alternative recyclable material for making surfboards
The TXFOAM project has managed to identify a new material which is less toxic, and is a recyclable alternative to the foam currently used in the manufacture of surfboards.

Daisies lead scientists down path to new leukemia drug
A new, easily ingested form of a compound that has already shown it can attack the roots of leukemia in laboratory studies is moving into human clinical trials, according to a new article by University of Rochester investigators in the journal, Blood.

Computer science, art & technology team on NSF grant
Two professors from Stevens Institute of Technology have collaborated across departments and disciplines to win a National Science Foundation grant for a technical-creative research project, titled,

Women less likely than men to receive ICDs for prevention of sudden cardiac death
Among Medicare patients, men are about 2-3 times more likely than women to receive an implantable cardioverter-defibrillator for the prevention of sudden cardiac death, according to a study in the Oct.

How 'mother of thousands' makes plantlets
New research shows how the houseplant 'mother of thousands' (Kalanchoe diagremontiana) makes the tiny plantlets that drop from the edges of its leaves.

A new 'responsible nanocode' for business
On Oct. 9 at the Wilson Center in Washington, the Project on Emerging Nanotechnologies will host the US launch of an international consultation on a new Code for Responsible Nanotechnology aimed principally at businesses and research organizations.

$10 million gift to support cutting-edge epigenome center at USC
The Keck School of Medicine of the University of Southern California received a $10 million gift from the Kenneth T. and Eileen L.

New system to lead to safer drugs for tropical disease leishmaniasis
The fight against the deadly tropical disease leishmaniasis, also known as black fever, has been boosted by scientists at the University of Durham, whose new screening system has raised the possibility of new, safer drugs.

Increasing young adult smoking linked to smoking in movies
Do young adults learn behaviors from movies? In a paper published in the November issue of the American Journal of Preventive Medicine, researchers from the University of California, San Francisco, examined the relationship between young adults (age 18-25) observing smoking in movies and the likelihood of starting to smoke.

NIH awards Phylonix phase II SBIR to develop zebrafish models for eye diseases
Phylonix Pharmaceuticals, Inc. today announced that it has been awarded a $1,092,031 Phase II Small Business Innovation Grant from the National Eye Institute of the National Institutes of Health to develop zebrafish eye disease models for drug screening.

Fossil data plugs gaps in current knowledge, study shows
Researchers have shown for the first time that fossils can be used as effectively as living species in understanding the complex branching in the evolutionary tree of life.
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