Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

February 15, 2008
Blacks awaiting lung transplants more likely to die or be denied than whites
Blacks with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease were less likely to receive a lung transplant and more likely to die or be removed from the transplant list than whites, according to Columbia University Medical Center researchers.

Powerful yet reliable proteomics techniques are the focus of a new methods book
Conventional approaches to proteomics have recently been augmented with a new generation of technologies unfamiliar to many life science researchers.

Brain waves pattern themselves after rhythms of nature
The same rules of physics that govern molecules as they condense from gas to liquid, or freeze from liquid to solid, also apply to the activity patterns of neurons in the human brain.

Does socializing make us smarter?
Humans are social animals; we spend much of our time with others in groups.

Bottom trawling impacts, clearly visible from space
Bottom trawling, an industrial fishing method that drags large, heavy nets across the seafloor stirs up huge, billowing plumes of sediment on shallow seafloors that can be seen from space.

Religion colors Americans' views of nanotechnology
Is nanotechnology morally acceptable? For a significant percentage of Americans, the answer is no, according to a recent survey of Americans' attitudes about the science of the very small.

French paradox redux? US vs. French on being full
It's the French paradox redux: Why don't the French get as fat as Americans, considering all the baguettes, wine, cheese, pate and pastries they eat?

Nanotech's health, environmental impacts worry scientists and the public
Nanotechnology, which is making its way into products ranging from food storage containers to computers, is seen differently among scientists than the general public, with scientists appearing to be more concerned in some areas.

Mesothelin engineered on virus-like particles provides treatment clues for pancreatic cancer
New understanding of a protein that spurs the growth of pancreatic cancer could lead to a new vaccine against the deadly disease, said researchers at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston in a report appearing in the current edition of the journal Molecular Cancer Therapeutics.

Hispanics have more difficulty controlling diabetes than non-Hispanic whites
Results of an analysis of multiple studies show diabetes control is more challenging for Hispanics than non-Hispanic whites, according to researchers at Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center and colleagues.

Dung happens and helps scientists
A scientist at Northern Arizona University is in charge of the largest animal dung collection in the world, used for clues about animal evolution and extinction, Ice Age existence and climate change.

Chronic pain should be considered a disease
The concept that chronic pain is a disease in its own right is leading to new specific treatments aimed at physical, psychological, and environmental components of this major disease, including genetic predisposition, according to a world renowned pain medicine expert.

UT Knoxville researcher links psychological research to practice
New research by a University of Tennessee, Knoxville, psychology professor aims to bridge the gap between how psychotherapy is studied in laboratory research settings, and how it is actually conducted in real-world clinical practice, leading to better care for patients.

USC and second sight announce European clinical trial for Argus II retinal implant
Artificial retinal implant takes next step by expanding clinical trial.

Lunar exploration -- potential UK and NASA collaboration
The British National Space Center and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration have today issued a report from the Joint Working Group on lunar exploration that outlines next steps in possible UK-US space exploration cooperation.

Tumor-targeting viral therapy slows neuroblastoma, malignant peripheral nerve sheath tumors
Researchers in a multi-institutional study led by Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center slowed the growth of two particularly stubborn solid tumor cancers -- neuroblastoma and peripheral nerve sheath tumors -- without harming healthy tissues by inserting instructions to inhibit tissue growth into an engineered virus, according to study results published in the Feb.

Coal gasification -- myths, challenges and opportunities
With demand for electricity expected to double by 2050 and renewable resources still years away from offsetting increased demand, it is clear -- coal is here to stay.

U-M scientists develop tool to probe role of oxidative stress in aging, disease
Oxygen, although essential for human life, can turn into an aggressive chemical that is outright toxic to important molecules inside our cells.

The key to quieter Atlantic hurricane seasons may be blowing in the wind
Every year, storms over West Africa disturb millions of tons of dust and strong winds carry those particles into the skies over the Atlantic.

Policies key as ethanol 'revolution' links agriculture, energy sectors
The recent boom in production of ethanol from corn grain has tightly linked the agriculture and energy sectors in an unprecedented fashion.

Swedish university honors probiotics scientist
Dr. Gregor Reid, Assistant Director of the Lawson Health Research Institute and Professor of Microbiology & Immunology and Surgery at the Schulich School of Medicine & Dentistry at The University of Western Ontario has been awarded an honorary doctorate degree in biology from Oerebro University in Sweden.

New tool for resolving fisheries conflicts
One possible solution to fisheries bycatch, advanced by NSERC grantee Dr.

CIRA scientist among authors of book celebrating 50 years of Earth observations from space
Stan Kidder, a researcher at the Cooperative Institute for Research in the Atmosphere at Colorado State University, will talk about contributions satellites make to weather forecasting on Feb.

The Uukuniemi virus helps to explain the infection mechanism of bunyaviruses
The Uukuniemi virus is the first bunyavirus whose structure researchers have been able to determine.

Oregon researchers study widespread areas of low oxygen off northwest coast
A team of scientists, including NOAA's William Peterson, studying the California Current -- a slow-moving mass of cold water that travels south along the coast from British Columbia to Baja California -- are seeing increasing areas of water off Washington and Oregon with little or no oxygen, possibly resulting in the deaths of marine animals that cannot leave the low-oxygen areas.

Dr. Caroline Wagner presents on dynamic self-organizing networks in higher education
SRI senior policy analyst Caroline Wagner, PhD, will deliver a talk titled Science, Ethics, and Institutional Traditions Around the World at the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science in Boston from Feb.

Moving beyond tamoxifen: Drug discovery and the future of selective hormone receptor modulators
How did a failed contraceptive become the first targeted therapy for the treatment of breast cancer?

European Neuroscience and Society Network tackles neurosocieties head-on
The neurosciences have such a wide-ranging influence on so many areas of life that a new concept of the community has developed called

Personalized medicine can cut breast cancer risk
The time has come for breast cancer risk assessment, counseling and genetic testing to move from cancer specialists to the realm of primary care.

Yes, no, maybe so: New model helps identify what works in mental health treatment
In a race to achieve accountability and credibility, the mental health profession has looked to develop evidence-based treatments -- psychotherapeutic procedures that have been shown in empirical research to work for the majority of patients.

Stress may increase a woman's risk of developing cervical cancer
A woman's daily stress can reduce her ability to fight off a common sexually transmitted disease and increase her risk of developing the cancer it can cause, according to a new study.

'Women and children first'
If you were a man on the Titanic, which side of the ship would have given you the best chance of making it into a lifeboat -- and surviving?

Stanford's Bill Perry to speak at AAAS on engineering's 'Grand Challenges'
At the request of the National Academy of Engineering, Stanford's William Perry, an engineering professor and former secretary of defense, has led a team of leading technical thinkers who have put together a list of

7-year neck pain study sheds light on best care
A seven-year, international study published today finds that some alternative therapies such as acupuncture, neck manipulation and massage are better choices for managing most common neck pain than many current practices.

Panel identifies greatest technological research challenges of the 21st century
A panel of maverick thinkers, convened by the National Academy of Engineering, today identified what they consider to be the greatest technological research challenges facing society in the coming century.

MIT researcher: Learning about brains from computers, and vice versa
For many years, Tomaso Poggio's lab at MIT ran two parallel lines of research.

Worldwide effort bringing ALMA telescope into reality
In the thin, dry air of northern Chile's Atacama Desert, at an altitude of 16,500 feet, an amazing new telescope system is taking shape, on schedule to provide the world's astronomers with unprecedented views of the origins of stars, galaxies, and planets.

Melting snow provides clues for acidification
Scientists investigate accumulated sulfate and nitrate in New England snow and follow it after the snow melts for clues to acidification of soils.

Nanotechnology's future depends on who the public trusts
When the public considers competing arguments about a new technology's potential risks and benefits, people will tend to agree with the expert whose values are closest to their own, no matter what position the expert takes.

Michigan laser beam believed to set record for intensity
If you could hold a giant magnifying glass in space and focus all the sunlight shining toward Earth onto one grain of sand, that concentrated ray would approach the intensity of a new laser beam made in a University of Michigan laboratory.

Leading engineers and scientists identify advances that could improve quality of life
The US National Academy of Engineering today announced the grand challenges for engineering in the 21st century.

ASU researcher finds direct democracy in science too much of a good thing
Publicly funded science in America is accountable to the people and their government representatives.

A map of the worm: First detailed anatomical atlas of C. elegans for use in the lab
To meet the demands of biologists who work with the model worm C. elegans in the laboratory, a new anatomical atlas has just been published.

Antarctic life hung by a thread during ice ages
A report published in the March issue of Ecology argues that the extreme cold and environmental conditions of past Ice Ages have been even more severe than seen today and changed life at the Antarctic, forcing the migration of many animals such as penguins, whales and seals.

Unexplored microbes hold incredible potential for science and industry
Despite the powerful and pervasive role of microbes in sustaining life, most of the microbial world remains a mystery.

Past greenhouse warming events provide clues to what the future may hold
Scientists studying an extreme period of global warming 55 million years ago are piecing together an increasingly detailed picture of its causes and consequences.

How believing can be seeing: Study shows how context dictates what we believe we see
Scientists at UCL have found the link between what we expect to see, and what our brain tells us we actually saw.

Identical twins not as identical as believed
Contrary to our previous beliefs, identical twins are not genetically identical.

Mobile Neanderthals
A 40,000-year-old tooth has provided scientists with the first direct evidence that Neanderthals moved from place to place during their lifetimes.

MIT researcher addresses biomedical engineering challenges
Much of the work in MIT Institute Professor Robert Langer's prolific lab sounds like something straight from the pages of science fiction, but its products are already saving lives around the world in a variety of ways.

Using HEPA filters may improve cardiovascular health
One day doctors may recommend using high efficiency particle air filters along with weight loss, smoking cessation, and exercise to improve cardiovascular health, according to researchers in Denmark.

CT radiation dose report released by American Association of Physicists in Medicine
Aiming to promote the best medical imaging practices nationwide and help ensure the health and safety of the millions of people who undergo computed tomography scans each year in the United States, the American Association of Physicists in Medicine has issued a CT radiation dose management report this month recommending standardized ways of reporting doses and educating users on the latest dose reduction technology.

Parental intervention boosts education of kids at high risk of failure
An eight-week-long intervention program aimed at parents from low socioeconomic backgrounds reaped significant educational benefits in their preschool-aged children, a University of Oregon research fellow reported today at the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.
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