Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

June 11, 2008
Disturbed rest, activity linked to mortality in older men
It appears that disrupted rest and activity rhythms are associated with increased mortality rates among older men, according to new University of Minnesota research.

Strong associations between disturbed rest/activity rhythms and mortality rates in older men
A research abstract that will be presented on Wednesday at SLEEP 2008, the 22nd Annual Meeting of the Associated Professional Sleep Societies, is the first to report strong associations between disturbed rest/activity rhythms and mortality rates in older, community-dwelling (noninstitutionalized) men.

Freshwater runoff from the Greenland Ice Sheet will more than double by the end of the century
The Greenland Ice Sheet is melting faster than previously calculated according to a recently released scientific paper by University of Alaska Fairbanks researcher Sebastian H.

'Saucy' software update finds symmetries dramatically faster
Computer scientists at the University of Michigan developed open-source software that cuts the time to find symmetries in complicated equations from days to seconds in some cases.

Normal sleep linked to successful aging
Research shows a link between normal sleep and healthy aging.

Disturbed sleep is prevalent in widowed seniors
Widowed seniors are more likely to have disrupted sleep when studied at least four months after the loss event.

Low thyroid function common in chronic kidney disease
Many patients with chronic kidney disease have mild reductions in thyroid function, or subclinical hypothyroidism -- a condition that becomes more common as kidney function declines, according to a study in the September 2008 issue of Clinical Journal of the American Society of Nephrology.

USDA gives green light to U of Minnesota contained facility to research deadly plant pathogens
New state-of-the-art laboratory at University of Minnesota's will conduct research on plant pathogens.

Florida Tech student earns first place in national science competition
This research indicates that changes in the production or ratio of gap junction proteins may affect blood vessel function and may potentially affect normal heart rhythm.

A self-help program delivered online can improve insomnia in adults
A cognitive behavioral intervention for insomnia delivered via the Internet can significantly improve insomnia in adults.

Diamonds reveal deep source of platinum deposits
The world's richest source of platinum and related metals is an enigmatic geological structure in South Africa known as the Bushveld Complex.

What's mine is mine: Brain scans reveal what's behind the aversion to loss of possessions
Did you ever wonder why it is so difficult to part with your stuff?

Patches show protection against and reduce severity of travelers' diarrhea
Vaccinating travelers against diarrhea using patches containing Escherichia coli toxins protects them from this unwanted ailment.

Designing microchips that contain multiple selves
Rice University computer engineers have created a way to design integrated circuits that contain many individual selves.

Building buff brains: Remedial instruction can close gap between good, poor readers
A Carnegie Mellon brain imaging study of poor readers found that 100 hours of remedial instruction not only improved the skills of struggling readers, but also changed the way the parietotemporal regions of their brains activated when they comprehended written sentences.

Mexican-Americans, women may be at increased risk for type of stroke
Mexican Americans and women may be at higher risk for subarachnoid hemorrhage, a type of stroke involving bleeding in the space around the brain, according to a study published in the June 11, 2008, online issue of Neurology, the medical journal of the American Academy of Neurology.

Report on citation statistics
The report looks at citation-based statistics, such as the impact factor, from a mathematical perspective.

Maternal malaria researcher wins prestigious international prize
Groundbreaking research into treating malaria infections in pregnant women has earned professor François Nosten, director of the Wellcome Trust-funded Shoklo Malaria Research Unit in Mae Sot, Thailand, international recognition.

Rocky water source
Gypsum, a rocky mineral is abundant in desert regions where fresh water is usually in very short supply but oil and gas fields are common.

Primary snoring in children impacts cardiovascular functioning
Primary snoring in children may have an impact on cardiovascular functioning equivalent to that of moderate obstructive sleep apnea.

Lupus more severe in patients with southern European ancestry
Systemic lupus erythematosus patients with a higher percentage of ancestry from southern Europe have more severe disease manifestations, according to new research presented today at EULAR 2008, the Annual Congress of the European League Against Rheumatism in Paris, France.

Opting out revolution a myth: Study shows steep employment gains for women, mothers
Contrary to the popular perception of a so-called

Vitamin supplement little more than 'snake oil'
A popular vitamin supplement is being advertised with claims that are demonstrably untrue, as revealed by research published in the open access journal BMC Pharmacology.

NASA'S GLAST launch successful
NASA's Gamma-ray Large Area Space Telescope, or GLAST, successfully launched aboard a Delta II rocket from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida at 12:05 p.m.

From Canada to the Caribbean: Tree leaves control their own temperature, Penn study reveals
The temperature inside a healthy, photosynthesizing tree leaf, about 21 degrees C, is affected less by outside environmental temperature than originally believed, according to new research from biologists at the University of Pennsylvania.

Pharmaceutical study: Less hemorrhaging after stroke, but not fewer deaths
An international study published in May 2008 in the New England Journal of Medicine has shown that the coagulation factor VIIa can limit the extent of a cerebral hemorrhage.

Sleep restriction results in increased consumption of energy from snacks
Bedtime restriction in an environment that promotes overeating and inactivity is accompanied by increased intake of calories from snacks.

'Children's Report of Sleep Patterns' a reliable, maybe a valid measure of children's sleep habits
The Children's Report of Sleep Patterns, a new self-report measure of children's sleep patterns, sleep hygiene and sleep disturbances for school-aged children, may be a reliable and valid self-report measure of sleep patterns, sleep hygiene and sleep disturbances in children eight to 12 years of age.

Experts to develop national response to growing crisis of premature birth
To underscore the importance of the growing problem of preterm birth the United States Congress passed the PREEMIE Act (P.L.

Never stop asking questions
Why is our world comprehensible? This question seems so trivial that few people have dared to ask it.

Sex offenders register provides limited protection for children
The UK's Sex Offenders Register is failing to protect vulnerable children, according to a psychologist at the University of Liverpool.

3 sequencing companies join 1000 Genomes Project
Leaders of the 1000 Genomes Project announced today that three firms that have pioneered development of new sequencing technologies have joined the international effort to build the most detailed map to date of human genetic variation as a tool for medical research.

Woolly-mammoth gene study changes extinction theory
A large genetic study of the extinct woolly mammoth has revealed that the species was not one large homogenous group, as scientists previously had assumed, and that it did not have much genetic diversity.

Young children in mostly Caucasian countries obtain more sleep than those in Asian countries
Young children in predominantly Caucasian countries obtain more overall sleep, have earlier bedtimes, and are less likely to room-share than young children in predominantly Asian countries.

Search engine branding to be examined by researcher
Like other industries, companies that maintain search engines must work harder to recruit and retain customers.

China honors IRRI for contributions to food security and science
China has given one of its most prestigious scientific awards to the Philippines-based International Rice Research Institute for making an

Study finds new properties in non-magnetic materials
A team of Penn State researchers has shown for the first time that the entire class of non-magnetic materials, such as those used in some computer components, could have considerably more uses than scientists had thought.

Dr. Anthony S. Fauci to receive Presidential Medal of Freedom
Anthony S. Fauci, M.D., director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, part of the National Institutes of Health, will be honored by President George W.

Latest research on allergies: Specific immunotherapy can help
Specific immune therapy works for many people and it is becoming increasingly popular in Europe, according to the German Institute for Quality and Efficiency in Health Care.

Do vaccines cause autism, asthma and diabetes?
Almost 70 percent of parents who refuse to vaccinate their children do so because they believe vaccines may cause harm.

Wet or dry, Montana still threatened by West Nile
West Nile virus seems to be here to stay despite Montana's cool, wet spring, says Montana State University entomologist Greg Johnson.

Moderate exercise can improve the sleep quality of insomnia patients
An acute session of moderate aerobic exercise, but not heavy aerobic or moderate strength exercises, can reduce the anxiety state and improve the sleep quality of insomnia patients.

£2.8million study to combat global food poverty
A major new £2.8 million study at the University of Leeds will bring together researchers from medicine, plant science, ecology, social policy and the environment to focus on preventing future food crises in sub-Saharan Africa.

Mayo Clinic study reveals rural, unmarried women at higher risk for depression
Mayo Clinic research suggests unmarried women living in rural areas have lower self-rated health status than their married counterparts.

Mechanism explains link between apolipoprotein E and Alzheimer's disease
Scientists have discovered a previously unknown mechanism by which apolipoprotein E, a molecule whose mutation is linked to Alzheimer's disease, stimulates degradation of sticky amyloid beta (A?) protein within the brain.

Researchers reveal insights into hidden world of protein folding
Proteins, long and linear when first made, must fold into specific configurations before they can properly do their job in a cell.

VIB and Bayer join forces for plant research
The changes in our climate, producing extreme temperatures or persistent drought, have an enormous impact on our crops -- to put it briefly, the crops are experiencing stress.

Pigs raised without antibiotics more likely to carry bacteria, parasites
While consumers are increasing demand for pork produced without antibiotics, more of the pigs raised in such conditions carry bacteria and parasites associated with food-borne illnesses, according to a new study.

Case Western Reserve and Penn State investigators inhibit corneal inflammation
Researchers from the Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine and Penn State Hershey College of Medicine identified a novel therapeutic that reduces sterile inflammation within the cornea.

Echo in the mountain: Sonar technology for application in tunnel excavation
Technology Transfer Award 2008 for the detection of disturbance zones during tunnel construction.

Will kids eat vegetables if they grow them?
Each night at dinner tables across Australia, frustrated parents say to their children:

Phantom parent molecule of important class of chemical compounds isolated for first time
A team of scientists from the University of Georgia and two European universities has, for the first time, synthesized and characterized the elusive parent molecule of an important class of chemical compounds.

European businesses not properly advised on how to prepare for flu pandemic
A new report entitled Business Continuity Planning and Pandemic Influenza in Europe, published by the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, has found huge gaps and differences across Europe in the level of advice given to businesses to prepare for a possible influenza pandemic.

Researchers find drugs being tested for Alzheimer's disease work in unexpected and beneficial ways
Researchers at Mayo Clinic, with their national and international collaborators, have discovered how a class of agents now in testing to treat Alzheimer's disease work, and say they may open up an avenue of drug discovery for this disease and others.

Historic collaboration to provide Africa's farmers technologies, infrastructure and financing
Two of the world's largest grant-making organizations in African agricultural development today joined forces in a plan to help African countries tackle poverty and hunger through smart, sustainable solutions to improve the productivity and incomes of small-scale farmers and poor rural households.

New research shows room for improvement in health news
Research into the news reporting of complementary and alternative medicine in Australia, has revealed that much of the information the public receives through the media is inaccurate or incomplete.

Fossils found in Tibet by FSU geologist revise history of elevation, climate
About 15,000 feet up on Tibet's desolate Himalayan-Tibetan Plateau, an international research team led by Florida State University geologist Yang Wang was surprised to find thick layers of ancient lake sediment filled with plant, fish and animal fossils typical of far lower elevations and warmer, wetter climates.

Source of drug-tolerant tuberculosis possibly behind TB relapses, intensity of treatment
University of Pittsburgh-led researchers discovered that the primary bacteria behind tuberculosis can grow on surfaces and that drug-tolerant strains flourish in these bacterial communities, the research team recently reported in Molecular Microbiology.

Are overconfident CEOs born or made? asks Management Insights study
A study of CEO's finds that many overestimate their own negotiating skills and overlook the element of luck in successful mergers, acquisitions, and other deals, according to the Management Insights feature in the current issue of Management Science, the flagship journal of the Institute for Operations Research and the Management Sciences.

Vitamin D: New way to treat heart failure?
Activated vitamin D protects the heart against avoid overwork and enlargement, two of the hallmarks of heart failure, a University of Michigan study in animals shows.

Chemical engineering researchers identify biofilms that cause infections
Examining Escherichia coli bacteria -- widely considered a model organism for microbiology studies -- professor Thomas K.

Bee species outnumber mammals and birds combined
Scientists have discovered that there are more bee species than previously thought.

New research group offers hope to asbestosis sufferers
The Asbestos Research Group, offering hope to sufferers of asbestos-related diseases, was launched at the Wesley Research Institute today.

Women, Mexican-Americans at higher risk of ruptured brain aneurysm
A type of bleeding stroke that can strike at any age, and kills one-third of its victims, appears to be more common in women and Mexican-Americans than in non-Hispanic white men, according to a new study.

University of Florida professor designs plasma-propelled flying saucer
Flying saucers may soon be more fact than mere science fiction.

Study aims to improve sex education for deaf pupils
British parents are to be quizzed about their children's sex education in a unique study that hopes to improve the way the subject is taught to deaf pupils.

Need microRNA processing? Get Smad
In a study published in Nature, researchers at Tufts report that Smad proteins regulate microRNA processing.

UT School of Public Health researchers discover significant efficacy of travelers' diarrhea vaccine
Researchers at the University of Texas School of Public Health have found that patients given a travelers' diarrhea vaccine were significantly less likely to suffer from clinically significant diarrhea than those who received placebo, according to a study published in this week's edition of the Lancet.

Rising fuel costs could lead to nuclear-powered ships
Rocketing fuel prices could make a new bill to get the US Navy to use nuclear-powered ships an attractive option.

Rising diesel prices renew interest in fuel-saving technologies for heavy trucks
Diesel fuel prices approaching $5 a gallon -- and the resulting economic impact on products transported by truck -- have created renewed interest in fuel-saving technologies developed during the past decade at the Georgia Tech Research Institute.

AGU Journal Highlights -- June 11, 2008
The following articles are in this issue:

Children in non-English-speaking households face many health disparities, researcher concludes
Children in US households where English is not the primary language experience multiple disparities in health care, a UT Southwestern Medical Center researcher has found.

Memory loss linked to common sleep disorder
Got memory problems? If you suffer from obstructive sleep apnea, your brain could be to blame.

Plutoid chosen as name for solar system objects like Pluto
The International Astronomical Union has decided on the term plutoid as a name for dwarf planets like Pluto at a meeting of its executive committee in Oslo.

1 out of 4 obese school-aged children suffers metabolic syndrome
A department chair of the University of Granada warns that a poor diet and a sedentary lifestyle have alarmingly increased the number of cases of children with metabolic syndrome, an illness associated with numerous cardiovascular pathologies in adults.

Taking the temperature of the no-fly zone
Flies, unlike humans, can't manipulate the temperature of their surroundings so they need to pick the best spot for flourishing.

50 percent of recent onset RA patients become free of signs and symptoms within 36 weeks
At least 50 percent of recent onset rheumatoid arthritis patients achieve remission within 36 weeks when following a systematic approach of step-up DMARD treatment in combination with tight control, according to results of a study presented today at EULAR 2008, the Annual Congress of the European League Against Rheumatism in Paris, France.
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