Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

October 09, 2007
Paving the way for future pan-European clinical trials
Pan-European collaboration is important for many clinical trials and essential for trials that are investigating treatments for rare diseases.

Interleukin-8, key marker for colorectal cancer treatment
Colorectal cancer constitutes one of the leading causes of cancer-related deaths worldwide.

New findings solve human origins mystery
New research from Harvard University's Museum of Comparative Zoology and from the Cedars Sinai Institute for Spinal Disorders reveals evidence of the emergence of the upright human body plan over 15 million years earlier than most experts have believed.

Medication shows promise as a treatment for alcohol dependence
Alcohol-dependent patients who received the medication topiramate had fewer heavy drinking days, fewer drinks per day and more days of continuous abstinence than those who received placebo, according to a study in the Oct.

Transcutaneous cervical esophageal ultrasound can not substitute for 24-h pH monitoring or manometry
Gastroesophageal reflux arises from increased exposure and/or sensitivity of the esophageal mucosa to gastric contents, and affects 5-40 percent of the population.

PSA velocity's clinical usefulness remains unclear
Some studies have suggested that the rate of change of prostate-specific antigen levels may correspond with prostate cancer survival.

Spread of endogenous retrovirus K is similar in the DNA of humans and rhesus monkeys
Research by Romano and colleagues, studying the population dynamics of complete copies of primate endogenous retrovirus family K in the genomes of humans, chimpanzee and rhesus monkey, revealed a surprising pattern.

New research warns of the lack of specialization when judging individuals with mental disorders
Pioneering research carried out at the University of Granada has identified the need for greater cooperation between criminal law and psychiatry when determining the effect of these disorders on the individual's responsibility.

British attitudes to exercise show misleading guidelines 'should be changed'
British adults now believe that moderate activity is more beneficial than vigorous exercise, according to new research by the University of Exeter and Brunel University.

Influenza: Insights into cell specificity of human vs. avian viruses
Researchers have identified which sites and cell types within the respiratory tract are targeted by human vs. avian influenza viruses, providing valuable insights into the pathogenesis of these divergent diseases.

Patients in Medicaid managed care programs may receive lower-quality care than commercial programs
Medicaid managed care enrollees appear to receive lower-quality care than patients enrolled in commercial managed care programs, according to a study in the Oct.

Low-fat diet possibly linked to lower risk of ovarian cancer
A low-fat diet may decrease the risk of ovarian cancer in postmenopausal women, according to a study published online Oct.

3 Columbia University Medical Center faculty elected to Institute of Medicine
Three distinguished Columbia University Medical Center faculty have been elected to the Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Sciences this year.

Media availability: low-fat dietary pattern may lower risk of ovarian cancer
A diet low in fat could reduce the risk of ovarian cancer in healthy postmenopausal women, according to new results from the Women's Health Initiative dietary modification trial.

Nobel prize in physics for Helmholtz scientist
The Nobel Prize in Physics goes to the German solid state physicist Professor Dr.

Model to study age-related macular degeneration could pave way for better treatment
Researchers at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine have created the first animal model of age-related macular degeneration caused by a mutation known to produce disease in people, an important first step in developing treatments.

Chronic job strain doubles the risk of a second heart attack
People who experience chronic job strain after a first heart attack double their risk of suffering from a second one, reports a research team from Université Laval's Faculty of Medicine in the Oct.

Study finds that even aloof husbands have lower testosterone levels than unmarried men
A fascinating new study is the first outside of North America to observe lower testosterone levels among married men.

Genomic technologies to identify toxic chemicals should be developed
A new report from the National Research Council recommends that government agencies enhance their efforts to incorporate genomic data into risk assessments of chemicals and medicines, and calls for a concerted effort to fully develop these methods' potential to protect public health.

UI licensee Optherion secures $37 million in financing
Optherion, Inc., a University of Iowa Research Foundation licensee and a company developing products to diagnose and treat age-related macular degeneration and other chronic diseases, today announced that it has completed $37 million startup financing.

State laws may limit implementation of CDC's recommendations for routine HIV testing
A new study concludes that routine testing for HIV recommended by the US Centers for Disease Control may violate many state laws.

Decrease in the use of radiotherapy procedures for the treatment of cancer in hospitals
The study is based on data of patients, treated in any of the 10 Andalusian public hospitals for one year, who were submitted to radiotherapy procedures for the treatment of tumours in the breast, lung, head and neck, cervix and endometrium.

Prostate cancer therapy linked to increased risk of heart disease death
The use of androgen deprivation therapy to treat localized prostate cancer is associated with an increased risk of death from heart disease, according to a study published online Oct.

Freight management in Manhattan: tax incentives and high-tech tools for night owls
Researchers at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute have won a competitive $1.2 million grant from the US Department of Transportation to identify the perfect combination of technology and financial incentives that could help alleviate daytime traffic congestion and boost economic growth in New York City.

Accentia announces investigational new drug application for Revimmune for refractory MS
The FDA has indicated its support for a pivotal Phase 3 randomized controlled, multicenter clinical trial of Revimmune, a potential therapeutic for refractory, relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis.

M-POSSUM, an effective risk assessment system prior to operation
With progress in the medical sciences, operative indications are being expanded, the range of possible operations is growing and operative complications are increasing accordingly.

Important rice production system under pressure
In the face of growing pressure on one of Asia's most important food production systems, experts are warning that farmers must get more help to make them more efficient.

Prostate cancer more likely to return in blacks than whites, but the disease is not more aggressive
African-American men are more likely to have their prostate cancer return after treatment, but their disease is no more aggressive when it does recur than that of their white counterparts, according to a study led by Duke Prostate Center researchers.

Research examines connection between substance abuse and violence
In the newly published The Cambridge Handbook of Violent Behavior and Aggression, Dr.

More than a pill: Complementary medicine can help with chronic pain
Mr. Jones has chronic back pain. He cannot sleep, bend or stand for long periods of time because of the pain.

SIM and Professor Luftman release 2007 CIO Survey data
The IT job market hasn't been so robust since the late 1990s, but explosive success is breeding serious shortages in high-quality IT talent, with potential negative consequences for continued growth, according to a major new survey of chief information officers conducted by Stevens Institute of Technology's Distinguished Professor Jerry Luftman, in association with the Society of Information Management.

Herding aphids -- how 'farmer' ants keep control of their food
Chemicals on ants' feet tranquilise and subdue colonies of aphids, keeping them close by as a ready source of food, says new research published today, Oct.

Cassini on the trail of a runaway mystery
Scientists are on the trail of Iapetus' mysterious dark side, which seems to be home to a bizarre

Researchers expand efforts to explore functional landscape of the human genome
The National Human Genome Research Institute, part of the National Institutes of Health, today announced grants totaling more than $80 million over the next four years to expand the ENCyclopedia Of DNA Elements project, which in its pilot phase yielded provocative new insights into the organization and function of the human genome.

Wiley-Blackwell forms book publishing partnership with ISTE
Wiley-Blackwell, the scientific, technical, medical and scholarly publishing business of John Wiley & Sons, Inc., today announced an agreement with ISTE Ltd. to become its exclusive co-publisher in the Americas, Asia and other territories worldwide, effective January 2008.

US, European cancer educators gather in Alabama for meeting
The American Association for Cancer Education will focus its annual meeting on health disparities and minority cancer education.

'Network' approach identifies potential breast cancer susceptibility gene
Like a crossword-puzzle solver who uses the letters in some answers to figure out others, researchers at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and an international group of collaborators have used data on genes involved in inherited forms of breast cancer to identify a gene linked to non-hereditary cases of the disease.

Humans unknowing midwives for pregnant moose
When it's time for moose to give birth in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem, they head to where it is safest from predators -- namely closer to people, according to a new study by the Wildlife Conservation Society.

Stress contributes to range of chronic diseases, Carnegie Mellon psychologist says
In a review of the scientific literature on the relationship between stress and disease, Carnegie Mellon University psychologist Sheldon Cohen has found that stress is a contributing factor in human disease, and in particular depression, cardiovascular disease and HIV/AIDS.

Women with high or increasing blood pressure are up to three times more likely to develop diabetes
One of the largest studies to investigate the relationship between blood pressure and type 2 diabetes has found that women who have high blood pressure levels are three times more likely to develop diabetes than women with low blood pressure levels.

Ultra-low-dose aspirin might decrease bleeding severity in portal hypertension
A team led by Dr. Christian Doutremepuich from the University of Bordeaux 2 has determined that the paradoxical prothrombotic effects of ultra-low-dose aspirin, that could have beneficial properties decreasing bleeding complications of portal hypertension, are mediated by inhibition of Cyclooxygenase 2.

Job strain after heart attack linked to risk for another heart attack
Persons who reported chronic job strain after a first heart attack (myocardial infarction) had about twice the risk of experiencing another coronary heart disease event such as heart attack or unstable angina than those without chronic job strain, according to a study in the Oct.

Rutgers physicist earns prestigious Packard Foundation Science and Engineering Fellowship
Rutgers physicist Emil Yuzbashyan has received a Packard Foundation Fellowship for Science and Engineering, which provides $625,000 in research funding for five years.

Inside job: new radioactive agents for colon cancer work inside cells
Johns Hopkins scientists have developed a potentially novel way to fight colorectal cancer using tiny molecules to deliver potent barrages of radiation inside cancer cells, unlike current treatments that bind to the surface of cells and attack from the outside and cause unwanted side effects.

Medicine proves a promising treatment in the battle against alcohol dependence
Researchers at the University of Virginia have led a multisite clinical trial showing that the drug topiramate is significantly more efficacious than placebo at curbing alcohol dependence.

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

Mysteries of the Rheic Ocean beginning to unravel
A wealth of information on one of Earth's ancient oceans is now available in a single volume published by the Geological Society of America.

$37 million financing for company based on macular degeneration research
Optherion, Inc., a company that will use groundbreaking discoveries by scientists at Yale and the University of Iowa to develop products to diagnose and treat age-related macular degeneration and other related chronic diseases, has received $37 million in start-up financing.

NASA: major step toward knowing origin of cosmic rays
Recent observations from NASA and Japanese X-ray observatories have helped clarify one of the long-standing mysteries in astronomy -- the origin of cosmic rays.

Medical identity theft: the importance of protecting your health records
Many consumers take precautions against identity theft, but what about medical identity theft?

Mathematicians help unlock secrets of the immune system
A group of scientists, led by mathematicians, has taken on the challenge of building a common model of immune responses.

Physicists win Nobel prize for hard work on hard drives
This year's Nobel Prize in Physics went to the developers of giant magnetoresistance, which has allowed computers to stuff more than a trillion bits of data on a tiny storage cell.

MIT Holding, Georgia Southern University, and MEVLABS successfully test the PROVECTOR
The technology is designed to stop the development of pathogens and parasites found in mosquitoes that carry deadly diseases such as malaria, dengue fever and West Nile virus.

UCSD physicians breathe life into cutting-edge stem cell procedure
Patients living with Myasthenia Gravis may breathe easier thanks to a rare bone marrow transplant procedure performed at the Bone Marrow Transplant Program at University of California, San Diego Medical Center, the only program in the western United States that has attempted this procedure.

Estuarine Research Federation chooses Springer as publishing partner
Springer has entered a publishing partnership with the Estuarine Research Federation for the journal Estuaries and Coasts.

IMRT better for sparing bladder when treating prostate cancer
When treating early-stage prostate cancer, intensity modulated radiation therapy spares the bladder significantly more from direct radiation when compared to 3-D conformal proton therapy , but the amount of rectal sparing is similar with both treatments, according to a study released in the October issue of the International Journal for Radiation Oncology*Biology*Physics, the official journal of the American Society for Therapeutic Radiology and Oncology.

Other highlights in the Oct. 9 JNCI
Also in the Oct. 9 JNCI are an association between allergies and a lower risk of brain cancer, and three new genetic prostate cancer risk factors.

Grant supports study of abnormal ring-shaped chromosomes
When chromosomes, which are normally bar-shaped, instead bend into a ring before birth, they may disrupt normal development and cause a multitude of problems.

APL-built spacecraft sees changes in Jupiter system
The voyage of NASA's Pluto-bound New Horizons spacecraft through the Jupiter system earlier this year provided a bird's-eye view of a dynamic planet that has changed since the last close-up looks by NASA spacecraft.

Discovery of retinal cell type ends 4-decade search
A research team combining high-energy physicists from the University of California, Santa Cruz, and neuroscientists from the Salk Institute in La Jolla, Calif., has discovered a type of retinal cell that may help monkeys, apes and humans see motion.

Positive results for airway bypass
This month's issue of the Journal of Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery features results on the airway bypass procedure for emphysema -- a COPD disease.

Antibody leads to repair of myelin sheath in lab study of multiple sclerosis and related disorders
Mayo Clinic researchers have found that a human antibody administered in a single low dose in laboratory mouse models can repair myelin, the insulating covering of nerves that when damaged can lead to multiple sclerosis and other disorders of the central nervous system.

Programs show short-term benefits in helping children maintain weight loss
Children who lost weight were able to keep it off more effectively by participating in maintenance treatment programs that emphasized behavioral skills or social facilitation, although the effectiveness lessened over time, according to a study in the Oct.

Generating 'oohs' and 'aahs': Vocal Joystick uses voice to surf the Internet
A new tool lets people with disabilities control a computer cursor without lifting a finger.
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