Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

April 22, 2008
NIH study reveals incidence, precursors and psychiatric sequelae of major psychiatric disorders
An analysis of NESARC's Wave 2 identifies predictors of first episodes of DSM-IV substance, mood and anxiety disorders.

Commercialization of air traffic control greatly improves performance
The air transportation industry is imperative to modern society. This industry depends, in turn, on a network of air navigation service providers to manage the flow of air traffic.

It pays to know your opponent: success in negotiations improved by perspective-taking
From the war room to the board room, negotiations are a part of everyday life.

Prostate cancer screening program leads to bigger fall in death rates than surrounding areas
PSA testing can reduce overall death rates from prostate cancer and early, effective treatment reduces the chance of the disease returning and killing people when they get older.

Futuristic robots, friend or foe?
A leading robotics expert will outline some of the ethical pitfalls of near-future robots to a Parliamentary group today (April 22, 2008) at the House of Commons.

The new boss ... same as the old boss?
Facing ever-declining performance in their schools, mayors and legislative bodies in the United States' largest cities have in recent years dismissed the elected boards and moved to a model of appointed boards.

Study finds cisplatin less effective than standard treatment for patients with anal cancer
When administered before chemoradiation, the common anti-cancer drug cisplatin neither improved disease-free survival nor reduced the number of colostomies needed when compared to the standard treatment for patients with anal canal cancer, according to a study published in the April 23 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

Social form of bullying linked to depression, anxiety in adults
Children who are shunned or targeted by social attacks in school may experience depression and anxiety in young adulthood, a University of Florida study shows.

JCI table of contents: April 22, 2008
This release contains summaries, links to PDFs, and contact information for the following newsworthy papers to be published April 22, 2008, in the JCI: Two types of image are better than one for analyzing tumors; One reason why curative transplants might fail in type 1 diabetics; Uncovering the secret ways of HIV: the HIV protein Nef impairs blood cell development; How is a regulator of sex hormone production regulated itself?; and others.

Shell-breaking crabs lived 20 million years earlier than thought
While waiting for colleagues at a small natural history museum in the state of Chiapas, Mexico last year, Cornell paleontologist Greg Dietl chanced upon a discovery that has helped rewrite the evolutionary history of crabs and the shelled mollusks upon which they preyed.

'Crime Scene Investigation' methods could help in the battle against hospital infections
Inspired by the popular television drama CSI, investigators in the Netherlands have trialed methods used by forensic scientists at crime scenes to highlight infection risks in their hospital.

You are what your mother eats: first evidence that mother's diet influences infant sex
New research by the Universities of Exeter and Oxford provides the first evidence that a child's sex is associated with the mother's diet.

Why fruit-eating bats eat dirt
In a study published in the online journal PLoS ONE, researchers from the Berlin Leibniz Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research, Boston University and Cornell University, found evidence that fruit-eating bats take up large amounts of mineral rich water and clay from so-called mineral licks to detoxify the secondary plant compounds they ingest in fruits.

Pin1 is beneficial in Alzheimer's disease, detrimental to some forms of dementia
A new study finds that the Pin1 enzyme, previously shown to be of benefit in

UC biology prof traces his roots to the first Earth Day
George Uetz, professor of biological sciences in the McMicken College of Arts & Sciences, was a Master's student in the Department of Entomology and Applied Ecology at the University of Delaware in Newark.

Detecting dangerous chemicals with lasers, exploring the brain's circuitry with light and more
Nearly 6,000 researchers from around the world will present the latest breakthroughs in electro-optics, lasers and the application of light waves at the 2008 Conference on Lasers and Electro-Optics/Quantum Electronics and Laser Science Conference.

Potential viral therapy weapon for difficult cancers is safe and effective in study
Combining a herpes virus genetically altered to express a drug-enhancing enzyme with a chemotherapy drug effectively and safely reduced the size of highly malignant human sarcoma grafted into mice.

Phone counseling improves quality of life, immune systems of cervical cancer survivors
A unique telephone-counseling intervention not only improved the quality of life for cervical cancer survivors but also altered associated stress-related effects on their immune systems, a UC Irvine study has found.

Rockefeller University hosts 2-day evolution symposium, May 1-2, 2008
Beginning with the molecular origins of life and culminating with the latest findings on human evolution, 18 of the world's leading experts will report on research spanning three billion years of evolution at a two-day symposium at Rockefeller University.

Freshwater herring had salty origin
East Africa's Lake Tanganyika has a highly diverse fauna which closely resembles marine animals.

Black women have urinary incontinence less than half as often as white women
The good news for black women: They have less than half the chance of developing urinary incontinence as do white women, according to a new study from the University of Michigan Health System.

The 1930s semi goes green
Three million of them were built; they stimulated a boom in employment and turned a nation of shop keepers into a nation of home owners.

UT Southwestern Medical Center receives grant from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation
The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation's Physician Faculty Scholars program has awarded a two-year, $203,626 grant to Dr.

Mass. General study shows how exercise changes structure and function of heart
For the first time researchers are beginning to understand exactly how various forms of exercise impact the heart.

Mix of 2 pain-relief procedures can end chronic back and leg pain without drugs
Even pain management specialists are now thinking

Ground-breaking new insight into the development of Alzheimer's disease
According to estimates there are 85,000 Alzheimer patients in Belgium and approximately 20,000 new cases every year.

Medicare Part D beneficiaries may pay a price for poor knowledge of their Part D benefits
Medicare beneficiaries have limited knowledge of their Medicare Part D outpatient prescription drug benefits.

Nurture over nature
Score one for the nurture side of the nature vs.

Scientists clarify a mechanism of epigenetic inheritance
Although letters representing the three billion pairs of molecules that form the

Fat-cell hormone linked to kidney disease
Reduced levels of a hormone produced by fat cells and linked to the development of insulin resistance may also be related to a higher risk of kidney disease, according to a study led by researchers at the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine and Thomas Jefferson University.

Sickest patients still struggle under new Medicare Part D benefit
While the new Medicare Part D drug benefit has produced positive outcomes, the sickest patients still skip medications for financial reasons.

Developing 'roadmaps' for enhancing the professional culture of medical schools
There is change afoot at the Indiana University School of Medicine in the way medicine is being taught.

First atomic-level look at a protein that causes brain disease
For the first time, researchers have peered deeply at the atomic level into the protein that causes hereditary cerebral amyloid angiopathy -- a disease thought to cause stroke and dementia.

Women 80 and older benefit from mammography, but few are screened
In the first study to assess mammography in women 80 and older, researchers found that having regular mammograms significantly decreases the risk of being diagnosed with late-stage breast cancer, but only about one-fifth of women in this age group receive them regularly.

McMaster University engineering professor receives Humboldt Research Award
Dr. Jamal Deen, professor of electrical and computer engineering at McMaster University, has been awarded a prestigious Humboldt Research Award for his work in electrical, electronic and communications engineering.

Companies do not always release important information
A new study in the Canadian Journal of Administrative Sciences found that companies that traded their shares on riskier stock exchanges attempted to manage internal trouble by selectively releasing information.

Drug-releasing stent shows promise for improving outcomes in patients with coronary artery disease
For patients who underwent angioplasty to open narrowed coronary arteries, the use of stents releasing the drug everolimus reduced the rate of renarrowing of the arteries and significantly reduced the risk of major cardiac events, compared to the widely-used paclitaxel-releasing stents, according to a study in the April 23/30 issue of JAMA.

Data mining personnel
Research to be published in a forthcoming issue of the International Journal of Business Information Systems, an Inderscience publication, researchers in India explain how personnel data mining could improve businesses.

Urban slum conditions are a source of leptospirosis
A study conducted in an urban slum setting in Salvador, Brazil has found that open sewers, accumulations of refuse, and inadequate floodwater drainage are acting as sources for transmission of the disease leptospirosis.

Purdue researchers propose way to incorporate deforestation into climate change treaty
Purdue University researchers have proposed a new option for incorporating deforestation into the international climate change treaty.

Engineering students: Headset muffles loud, unnerving MRI noises
Having an MRI exam, an experience many people describe as stressful and uncomfortable, could soon become a bit more pleasant, thanks to the work of a team of University of Florida engineering students.

American Chemical Society honors 7 Springer scientists
Seven Springer editors and editorial or advisory board members were the recipients of awards administered by the American Chemical Society for 2008.

2 types of image are better than 1 for analyzing tumors
Doctors treating individuals with cancer would find a noninvasive method to determine the amount of oxygen in a tumor very useful, because low levels of oxygen in a tumor have been linked to a poor outcome.

To a fault: the bottom line on earthquakes
Although many people think that California

Can certain metals repel sharks from fishing gear?
Sharks in captivity avoid metals that react with seawater to produce an electric field, a behavior that may help fishery biologists develop a strategy to reduce the bycatch of sharks in longline gear.

New data to help with Afghanistan's natural resources and hazards assessments
You are invited to attend an event hosted by the Embassy of Afghanistan where the USGS will unveil data collected during the airborne geophysical and photographic survey of Afghanistan.

OHSU Cancer Institute researcher identifies protein that helps predict prostate cancer survival
An Oregon Health & Science University Cancer Institute researcher has identified a protein that is a strong indicator of survival for men with advanced prostate cancer.

CSIRO astronomers to join 'private data highway' across US
CSIRO's Australia Telescope National Facility has been awarded a

Improved governance needed to realize nanotech's benefits
Without an improved governance structure, the benefits of nanotechnology may be difficult to fully realize because the public will not trust the cutting-edge technology, says David Rejeski, director of the Project on Emerging Nanotechnologies.

Findings a step toward making new optical materials
Chemical engineers have developed a

HHMI awards $60M to invigorate science teaching at liberal arts colleges
Forty-eight of the nation's best undergraduate institutions will receive $60 million to help them usher in a new era of science education.

Scientists discover a mechanism that can send cells on the road to cancer
Using a common virus as a tool for investigating abnormal cell proliferation, a team led by scientists at Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory has succeeded in clarifying an intricate series of biochemical steps that shed light on a way that cancer can begin.

Low grades, bad behavior? Siblings may be to blame, FSU study says
We all know the story of a man named Brady and the group that somehow formed a family.

AGU journal highlights -- April 22, 2008
In this issue: Cooling a climate disagreement; Southern skies sensitive to ozone variation; Do surges trigger geomagnetic substorms?; Model warns early of Indonesia, Australia drought; Corals reveal oceans' carbon reservoir age; Unusual tremor jiggles Mexican zone.

NIAID describes research priorities to fight drug-resistant tuberculosis
Tuberculosis has long been one of the world's great killers.

American Cancer Society report details cancer prevention efforts
An annual report from the American Cancer Society highlights that long-term favorable trends have stalled for several factors that have been responsible for declining cancer death rates in the US.

Primary driver of stomach cancer development identified
Scientists at the Melbourne Branch of the international Ludwig Institute for Cancer Research have discovered what appears to be the primary driver of tumor development in the stomach.

PNNL reaches goal to change world one light at a time
PNNL has enlisted more than 1,000 employees who have pledged to replace at least one incandescent bulb or fixture in their homes with one that has earned the government's Energy Star label.

A simplified method of giving rabies vaccine
A simplified economical method of giving rabies vaccine is just as effective as the expensive standard vaccine regimen at stimulating anti-rabies antibodies.

Not understanding Medicare Part D still an issue; medication adherence may be improving overall
There still appears to be some lack of knowledge regarding Medicare's Part D prescription drug program, although there is evidence that cost-related medication nonadherence may have improved overall, according to two studies in the April 23/30 issue of JAMA.

Particular experimental therapy not more effective than standard treatment for anal canal cancer
Use of chemotherapy with the drug cisplatin before other treatments did not improve disease-free survival for patients with anal canal cancer compared to the standard treatment regimen, and resulted in a higher rate of colostomy procedures, according to a study in the April 23/30 issue of JAMA.

News tips from the Journal of Neuroscience
The following articles are featured in the April 23 issue of the Journal of Neuroscience: Isolation of a nonhistaminergic pruritic compound; Discrete forms of homeostatic regulation in V1; Face/voice integration in macaques; and Developmental role of microRNAs in forebrain.

New OLED encapsulation method reduces water intrusion and increases lifetime
Researchers have developed an improved organic light emitting diode (OLED) sealing process to reduce moisture intrusion and improve device lifetime.

Laser dissection of depression
Hyperactivity of certain brain regions is considered to be pivotal in symptoms of depression.

BRIGHTER lasers for tomorrow's technologies
Scientists and engineers across Europe have joined forces in a unique collaborative effort to develop a new generation of high-brightness lasers that will transform the fields of healthcare, communications and entertainment.

A stem cell type supposed to be crucial for angiogenesis and cancer growth does not exist?
It is widely believed that tumor angiogenesis and cancer growth critically depend on circulating endothelial precursor cells, mobilized from the bone marrow.

Scientists identify novel way to prevent cardiac fibrosis
In a study that points to a new strategy for preventing or possibly reversing fibrosis -- the scarring that can lead to organ and tissue damage -- researchers at the University of California, San Diego, School of Medicine have determined that a molecule called Epac (Exchange protein activated by cAMP1), plays a key role in integrating the body's pro- and anti-fibrotic response.

Synchrotron light unveils oil in ancient Buddhist paintings from Bamiyan
The world was in shock when in 2001 the Talibans destroyed two ancient Buddha statues in Afghanistan.

Ugandan monkeys harbor evidence of infection with unknown poxvirus
Researchers report that red colobus monkeys in western Uganda have been exposed to an unknown orthopoxvirus, a pathogen related to the viruses that cause smallpox, monkeypox and cowpox.

Each finger can be moved separately
For the first time worldwide a patient at the Orthopedic University Hospital in Heidelberg has tested both the

Link between ozone air pollution and premature death confirmed
Short-term exposure to current levels of ozone in many areas is likely to contribute to premature deaths, says a new National Research Council report, which adds that the evidence is strong enough that the US Environmental Protection Agency should include ozone-related mortality in health-benefit analyses related to future ozone standards.

Costs, considerations of switching to natural or organic methods
The definition of

Herbicide-tolerant crops can improve water quality
Researchers investigated the water quality effects of using residual versus contact herbicides on corn and herbicide-tolerant soybean.

Numerical information can be persuasive or informative depending on how it's presented
Would you rather support research for a disease that affects 30,000 Americans a year or one that affects just .01 percent of the US population?
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