Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

November 26, 2007
CT angiography highly accurate, multicenter trials show
Computed tomography angiography is as accurate as an invasive angiogram in detecting coronary artery disease, according to findings from the first two prospective multicenter 64-slice scanner trials.

Penn State gets Critical Zone Observatory
Shale Hills in central Pennsylvania is already a busy area in Penn State's managed forest lands, but now a five-year $4.2 million National Science Foundation grant will make it even busier as scientists study how soils form from bedrock and how soil formation affects water movement and groundwater flow to streams.

Environmental researchers propose radical 'human-centric' map of the world
Ecologists pay too much attention to increasingly rare

Both gender and friendship can influence adolescent alcohol use
Researchers have concluded that adolescents who drink alcohol, smoke and/or use drugs tend to have peers who do the same.

Accuracy of past hurricane counts good
Counting tropical storms that occurred before the advent of aircraft and satellites relies on ships logs and hurricane landfalls, making many believe that the numbers of historic tropical storms in the Atlantic are seriously undercounted.

Nicotine may enhance attention and working memory in recovering alcoholics
Reesearch findings conclude that alcoholics in early recovery tend to have impaired cognitive functioning, and nicotine is known to have beneficial effects under certain circumstances.

Attitudes toward mammography differ across ethnicities, cultures, backgrounds
Black and Hispanic women have a different understanding of screening mammography compared with that of Caucasian women, according to the findings of a Boston University Medical Center survey.

New journal Energy & Environmental Science to be launched by RSC Publishing
International not-for-profit publisher RSC Publishing announced today at the MRS Fall meeting that it will launch a new publication, Energy & Environmental Science, in Summer 2008.

Injury report shows all-terrain vehicles not child's play
All-terrain vehicles pose a serious risk of injury and even death, according to the largest study ever conducted of ATV injuries in children.

U of T professor named top researcher to change the world by Esquire magazine
U of T professor Ron Deibert named one of six researchers with six ideas that will one day change the world by Esquire Magazine.

Depression linked to bone-thinning in premenopausal women
Even in young women, depression is as potent a risk factor for osteoporosis as are low calcium intake, smoking, and lack of exercise, NIH researchers have found.

Gene study supports single main migration across Bering Strait
A new analysis of genetic variation among more than two dozen native populations bolsters the theory that the ancestors of modern native peoples across the Americas came via a northwest land bridge some 12,000 years ago.

Planting carbon deep in the earth -- rather than the greenhouse
University of Leeds research shows how storing carbon dioxide deep below the earth's surface could be a safe, long-term solution to one of the planet's major contributors to climate change.

City-dwelling women at greater risk for breast cancer
Women who live in urban areas have denser breasts, making them more likely to develop breast cancer, according to a new study.

Rutgers College of Nursing faculty member Rachel Jones awarded Rutgers-Newark Provost Award
Rutgers College of Nursing faculty member Rachel Jones has been selected to be the recipient of the Rutgers-Newark Provost's Award for Community Engagement in Research.

U of Minnesota researcher finds materialism in children and adolescents linked to self-esteem
In one of the first studies to focus on the development of materialism among children, Deborah Roedder John, a professor of marketing at the University of Minnesota's Carlson School of Management, reveals that a young person's level of materialism is directly connected to their self-esteem.

Summer-dormant tall fescue grass shows promise for pasture improvements
A pasture improvement research program by Dr. Dariusz Malinowski has him looking at summer-dormant tall fescue grasses as an alternative to winter wheat pastures.

What are the benefits and risks of fitting patients with radiofrequency identification devices?
In 2004, the United States Food and Drug Administration approved a radiofrequency identification device that is implanted under the skin of the upper arm of patients and that stores the patient's medical identifier.

Drugs may not delay onset of dementia; and more
Researchers have examined the evidence in favor of giving people considered to be close to developing dementia the drugs that are most commonly used to treat the condition itself.

Student writes his own textbook
Most students know how complicated and frustrating textbooks can be.

St. Jude researchers identify key genetic trigger of acute myeloid leukemia
A gene called N-Myc leads a double life in certain white blood cells, helping to trigger a cancer called acute myeloid leukemia (AML) under some conditions while triggering apoptosis, or cell suicide, under other conditions, according to results of a mouse study done by investigators at St.

Many prostate cancer patients receive improper or 'mismatched' therapies
Prostate cancer patients often receive treatment that is contraindicated by pre-existing conditions, like urinary or bowel dysfunction, according to a new study.

UCLA mathematician works to make virtual surgery a reality
A surgeon accidentally kills a patient, undoes the error, and starts over again.

Boston University School of Medicine Professor receives award from American Heart Association
Margaret Kelly-Hayes, EdD, RN, FAAN, FAHA, a clinical professor of neurology at Boston University School of Medicine and an investigator at the Framingham Heart Study, was recently awarded the Stroke Council Award from the American Heart Association.

Lavishly illustrated guide to Peru's birds describes 1,800 species
More than 30 years in the making, Birds of Peru describes the birds of Peru through 304 color plates, 1,700 species distribution maps, also in color, and concise descriptive text.

Penn research shows transcranial magnetic stimulation effective in treating major depression
Researchers at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine and other study sites have found that transcranial magnetic stimulation -- a noninvasive technique that excites neurons in the brain via magnetic pulses passed through the scalp -- is a safe and effective, nondrug treatment with minimal side effects for patients with major depression who have tried other treatment options without benefit.

Undocumented Latinos visit physicians less often than US-born counterparts
Undocumented Mexicans and other undocumented Latinos report less use of health care and poorer experiences with the health care system compared with their counterparts who were born in the US, according to a report in the Nov.

Environmental exodus
Climate change is likely to intensify droughts, storms and floods, which will undoubtedly lead to environmental migrations and potential conflicts in the areas migrated to.

Patient knowledge of heart risk profile may help improve cholesterol management
Patients who discuss their coronary risk profiles with their physicians may respond better to treatment for cholesterol disorders, according to a report in the Nov.

New research review shows that your family doctor may be the key to quitting smoking
Scientists at the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health are defining the most effective ways to treat tobacco dependence.

Cleveland Clinic leading clinical program to improve early-stage lung cancer detection
Cleveland Clinic and Riverain Medical today announced the establishment of the first study in an ongoing program to determine whether chest X-ray CAD (computer-aided detection) can improve practical early detection of lung cancer.

Novel MRI technique shows secondhand smoke damages lungs
For the first time, researchers have identified structural damage to the lungs caused by secondhand cigarette smoke.

Medical research participants should understand that research is not the same as treatment
Some research participants do not appreciate important differences between medical research and treatment, says a team of researchers in a policy paper in this week's PLoS Medicine.

Drinking away anxiety -- a new program finds safer ways for college students to cope
University of Cincinnati research on college drinking is presented at a national mental health conference.

New data logger gives scientists more functionality in small, inexpensive package
Enclosed in a rugged yellow case the size of a lunchbox, the data logger performs in one small package what scientists needed several instruments to do in the past.

Prize-winning research gives insight into children's perspective of Israeli-Palestinian conflict
Research looking at the barriers confronting Israeli children in understanding the Palestinian perspective of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict has recently attracted honor from the Economic and Social Research Council and the Young Foundation by winning the prestigious Michael Young Prize.

Argonne's nuclear energy research moves toward greater reliance on computer simulation
The US Department of Energy's Argonne National Laboratory is taking its nuclear energy research into new territory -- virtual territory that is.

Study shows endemic cholera can be controlled with oral vaccines
Endemic cholera, a potentially fatal diarrheal disease found in the world's most impoverished countries, could be effectively controlled by orally vaccinating half of the affected populations once every two years for only pennies per dose, according to new findings by an international team of researchers led by Ira M.

New T-ray source could improve airport security, cancer detection
Going through airport security can be such a hassle. Shoes, laptops, toothpastes, watches and belts all get taken off, taken out, scanned, examined, handled and repacked.

Do middle-school students understand how well they actually learn?
Dr. John Dunlosky, Kent State professor of psychology, and his colleague, Dr.

Secondhand smoke damages lungs, MRIs show
It's not a smoking gun, but it's smoking-related, and it's there in bright medical images: evidence of microscopic structural damage deep in the lungs, caused by secondhand cigarette smoke.

Tree of life for flowering plants reveals relationships among major groups
The evolutionary

An intelligent new way to support the teaching of evolution
The world-renowned evolutionary scientist Niles Eldredge and his son Greg Eldredge, a high school science teacher, believe it's time to help science educators fight back against the strong pressure creationists exert on public education.

UCLA researchers outline the structure of the largest non-virus particle ever crystallized
A draft atomic structure has been determined for the 9.3-MDa protein shell of the vault cytoplasmic particle, revealing stave-like polypeptides forming the barrel-like structure of the vault.

Omega-3 fatty acids protect against Parkinson's, study says
Omega-3 fatty acids protect the brain against Parkinson's disease, according to a study by Université Laval researchers published in the online edition of the FASEB Journal.

Is your heart aging faster than you are?
Despite the increasing evidence that managing high cholesterol reduces cardiovascular events, many people do not achieve recommended lipid levels.

New teaching tool is making a difference
A new learning program, created by University of Alberta researchers, is helping students in a First Nations classroom with their reading, memory and organizational skills.

Pol3 mutation disrupts organ growth
Transcription of tRNAs and other noncoding RNAs by RNA polymerase III is essential for cell proliferation, growth, and survival.

Researchers outline structure of largest nonvirus particle ever crystallized
Researchers at UCLA, the California NanoSystems Institute, the David Geffen School of Medicine and the Howard Hughes Medical Institute have modeled the structure of the largest cellular structure ever crystallized, suggesting ways to engineer the particles for drug delivery.

University of Toronto scientists map entire yeast genome
University of Toronto scientists have devised a tool to help understand and predict the state of a cell by successfully mapping all 70,000 nucleosomes in yeast.

Burning out? Try logging off
Electronic tethers like E-mail and cell phones have no place on vacations, says a Tel Aviv University researcher.

High-glycemic index carbohydrates associated with risk for developing type 2 diabetes in women
Eating foods high on the glycemic index, which measures the effect of carbohydrates on blood glucose levels, may be associated with the risk for developing type 2 diabetes in Chinese women and in African-American women, according to two studies in the Nov.

NSF grant funds research on risky decision-making in pre-teens
Researchers at the University of Iowa secured a $396,000 grant from the National Science Foundation to study risky decision-making among pre-teens.

'Mismatched' prostate cancer treatment more common than expected
More than a third of men with early prostate cancer who participated in a study analyzing treatment choice received therapies that might not be appropriate, based on pre-existing problems with urinary, bowel or sexual function.

Ozone can affect heavier people more
A new study provides the first evidence that people with higher body mass index may have a greater response to ozone than leaner people.

Red blood cell transfusions under scrutiny
Bristol scientists have found that red blood cell transfusions given to people having heart surgery could increase the risk of heart attack or stroke.

Living donors may be best source of insulin-producing islets for diabetes treatment
According to a new study in Clinical Transplantation, obtaining islet cells (clusters of pancreatic cells that create insulin) from living donors may be a solution to the shortage of islets available for transplantation.

Non-Caucasians at higher risk for severe metastatic breast cancer pain
A new study finds significant racial differences in the risk of pain related to metastatic breast cancer.

Double gain for SAGE in public health
SAGE, the world's fifth largest journals publisher, is delighted to announce two new society partnerships that further strengthen the company's strong presence in international public health.

For treating malaria, less drugs may be best drugs
The current dosage of drugs used in treating malaria may be helping the parasites become resistant to the drugs faster, without improving the long-term outcome in patients.

UF botanists: Flowering plants evolved very quickly into 5 groups
University of Florida and University of Texas at Austin scientists have shed light on what Charles Darwin called the

Facial expressions have greater impact on kids with bipolar disorder
Children with bipolar disorder respond differently to facial expressions than typically developing children without psychiatric disorders, according to a new study led by a Bradley Hospital researcher.

Mexican Americans carrying haplotype H6 of the CYP2E1 gene have a greater risk of alcoholism
Mexican Americans make up 66 percent of the US Hispanic population and, when compared to other ethnic groups, show high rates of heavy drinking and alcohol-related problems.

Smarter energy storage for solar and wind power
Development of the first hybrid battery suitable for storing electricity from renewable energy sources such as solar and wind is now a step closer.

The good and bad of medical research
The difficult area of using observational methods in medical research is explored in a comment by the Lancet's editor Dr.

The proof is in the tree bark
A study by Indiana University researchers found the chlorinated flame retardant Dechlorane Plus in the bark of trees across the northeastern US, with by far the highest concentrations measured near the Niagara Falls, N.Y., factory where this chemical is produced.

AMPATH: Restoring lives not just immune systems
A study published in the December issue of the Journal of General Internal Medicine reports on why AMPATH, a program which broadly defines health care, is successful in fighting AIDS and improving lives in sub-Saharan Africa.

Brilliant perspectives
Today, DESY celebrates the topping-out ceremony for the experimental hall of PETRA III -- the new source of especially brilliant X-ray light in Hamburg.

Study suggests link between obesity, poor bone health
Being overweight is a known risk factor for heart disease, diabetes and a host of other health conditions.

Both alcohol dependence and conduct disorder contribute to having a high number of sex partners
High-risk sexual behaviors can lead to unwanted pregnancies, infection and reproductive problems.

Design of patient tracking tools may have unintended consequences
Proper design of computational tools is critical if they are to be used with success in patient-care settings, particularly in hospital emergency rooms, a field study conducted by researchers at the University at Buffalo and other institutions recently revealed.

Cholera vaccine could protect affected communities
Using data from Bangladesh, Ira Longini and colleagues develop a mathematical model predicting that oral vaccination of 50 percent to 70 percent of the population could control cholera transmission in an endemic region.

Scientists adopt fresh approach in quest for new therapies
Scientists are to pool their expertise in human health to pioneer an innovative approach to treating common diseases.

Elsevier expands ScienceDirect College Edition
Elsevier, a leading scientific and healthcare publisher announced today that their license for two- and four-year colleges, ScienceDirect College Edition, will be expanded to include content going back to 1995 at no additional cost to the customer.

Smoking and depression often co-occur in new mothers
Smoking and depression often go hand-in-hand for new mothers, and this combination may affect their child's health as well, reports a study in the November 2007 issue of Preventive Medicine by Temple University researcher Dr.

Not enough 'good' cholesterol makes it harder to recover from stroke
People are at an increased risk of memory problems and greater disability after stroke if they have low levels of 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