Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

June 13, 2008
CV risk management should be mandatory in RA and other types of inflammatory rheumatic disease
Rheumatoid arthritis, ankylosing spondylitis and psoriatic arthritis patients should undergo compulsory cardiovascular risk management and existing CV risk calculators should be adapted to the increased CV risk in inflammatory rheumatic disease patients, the EULAR Task Force on

Wealth of genomic hotspots discovered in embryonic stem cells
Singapore scientists unveil an atlas showing the location of

8-day undersea mission begins experiment to improve coral reef restoration
Scientists have begun an eight-day mission, in which they are living and working at 60 feet below the sea surface in an underwater

Growing use of nanomaterials spurs research to investigate possible downsides
There is increasing concern about possible negative impacts from nanoscale materials used in commercial products, specifically when nanomaterials find their way into the body or out into the environment.

Joint distraction promotes structural repair in patients with severe knee osteoarthritis
Joint distraction (the use of a surgical frame around a degenerated joint to strengthen and promote repair) promotes cartilage repair in severe end stage osteoarthritis of the knee, as demonstrated for the first time by data presented today at EULAR 2008, the Annual Congress of the European League Against Rheumatism in Paris.

Abatacept and infliximab improve clinical response over time in methotrexate-refractory RA patients
New data presented today at EULAR 2008, the Annual Congress of the European League Against Rheumatism in Paris, France, show that over half of rheumatoid arthritis patients resistant to methotrexate monotherapy improved when either abatacept or infliximab were added to their methotrexate treatment regimen, with positive results sustained up to one year later.

USC School of Dentistry researchers use a patient's own bone to accelerate orthodontics
Researchers at the University of Southern California School of Dentistry say they have improved upon a surgical procedure that rapidly straightens teeth, delivering a healthy bite and attractive smile in months instead of years.

Nanoparticles aid bone growth
In the first study of its kind, bioengineers and bioscientists at Rice University and Radboud University in Nijmegen, Netherlands, have shown they can grow denser bone tissue by sprinkling stick-like nanoparticles throughout the porous material used to pattern the bone.

UD nets NOAA funding for Mid-Atlantic ocean observing
The University of Delaware has received $400,000 from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration to continue development of an ocean observing system for the Mid-Atlantic region, spanning the waters from Cape Hatteras, N.C., to Cape Cod, Mass., and out to the continental shelf.

Rheumatoid arthritis factors equal to cardiovascular factors in risk of severe cardiovascular events
Certain cardiovascular disease risk factors and rheumatoid arthritis disease factors have a similar effect on an RA patient's risk of experiencing myocardial infarction or stroke, according to a new study presented today at EULAR 2008, the Annual Congress of the European League Against Rheumatism in Paris, France.

Salmonella: Trickier than we imagined
Salmonella is serving up a surprise not only for tomato lovers around the country but also for scientists who study the rod-shaped bacterium that causes misery for millions of people.

Weight gain in children has no association with sugar-sweetened beverage consumption
An analysis of 12 recent studies indicate that there is virtually no link between the consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages and weight gain in children and teens.

Carnegie Mellon's Ed Rubin urges Congress to approve legislation
Carnegie Mellon University professor Edward S. Rubin is urging Congress to approve newly proposed legislation designed to fund pioneering technologies to trap and store carbon dioxide emissions.

Ancient mineral shows early Earth climate tough on continents
A new analysis of ancient minerals called zircons suggests that a harsh climate may have scoured and possibly even destroyed the surface of the Earth's earliest continents.

Emory study of syphilis bacteria yields valuable diagnostic tool
Variations in a gene within the family of bacteria that causes syphilis may hold clinical, epidemiological and evolutionary significance.

EuroDYNA takes lid off the genome
European researchers have made significant progress unraveling how genes are governed and why this sometimes goes wrong in disease.

1 in 10 adults has a non-earlobe piercing
One in ten adults in England have had a piercing somewhere other than their ear lobe, with a quarter experiencing complications, and one in 100 piercings resulting in a hospital admission, according to a study published on today.

Even the Antarctic winter cannot protect Wilkins Ice Shelf
Wilkins Ice Shelf has experienced further break-up with an area of about 160 square kilometers breaking off from May 30-31, 2008.

1 in 8 Lower Manhattan residents had signs of PTSD 2 to 3 years after 9/11
Lower Manhattan residents developed post-traumatic stress disorder at three times the usual rate in the years following 9/11.

Same-day pregnancy test provides valuable guidance to pre-surgery patients
The first trimester of any pregnancy is a precarious time, as about 15 percent of women who know they are pregnant will spontaneously miscarry.

Smoking does not put women at higher risk of lung cancer than men
Women who smoke are no more likely to develop lung cancer than men who smoke.

Specific location of the TRAF1/C5 gene associated with multiple autoimmune diseases
The TRAF1/C5 locus on chromosome 9 has been revealed to play a role in multiple autoimmune diseases including type 1 diabetes and systemic lupus erythematosus, according to new data presented today at EULAR 2008, the Annual Congress of the European League Against Rheumatism in Paris.

30 percent RA patients refractory to anti-TNFs achieve disease remission with tocilizumab
Tocilizumab plus methotrexate showed significant clinical improvements in efficacy and safety in patients with moderate to severe rheumatoid arthritis, who had not adequately responded to anti-tumour necrosis factor (anti-TNF) therapy, according to a new study presented today at EULAR 2008, in Paris.

UT Southwestern surgeons complete first single-incision lap-band surgery in Texas
UT Southwestern Medical Center surgeons have completed the first single-incision Lap-Band weight-loss surgery in Texas.

1 patient's account of becoming a live kidney donor
Hospitals need to make the process of live donation easier for potential donors, says a patient in this week's BMJ.

Microchip sets low-power record with extreme sleep mode
A low-power microchip developed at the University of Michigan uses 30,000 times less power in sleep mode and 10 times less in active mode than comparable chips now on the market.

$10 million gift will retain and recruit world-class researchers to University at Buffalo
The University at Buffalo announced today a $10 million gift from Jeremy M.

Eastern independence, Western conformity?
Psychologists Toshio Yamagishi, Hirofumi Hashimoto and Joanna Schug from Hokkaido University in Sapporo, Japan used the seemingly simple task of pen choice to determine if Japanese and American cultural differences are a function of social constraints.

The single largest research project ever to be undertaken by the European Society of Cardiology, EUROACTION, showed that a multidisciplinary, family based and nurse-coordinated program made a real difference in improving lifestyle and reducing cardiovascular risk among coronary patients and people with a high risk of developing cardiovascular disease.

Rheumatoid arthritis is a risk factor for cardiovascular disease
The risk of cardiovascular disease for people with rheumatoid arthritis has been found to be comparable to the risk of CVD in people with type 2 diabetes, according to the conclusions of two studies presented today at EULAR 2008, the Annual Congress of the European League Against Rheumatism in Paris, France.

NASA data helps pinpoint impacted populations in disaster aftermath
When two catastrophic natural disasters struck within days of each other in May 2008, disaster relief, humanitarian aid, and health officials, as well as members of the news media tapped into a unique set of NASA data products describing the location of the exposed populations.

Lizards pull a wheelie
Lizards that run on two legs haven't evolved to pull the stunt; they're simply pulling a wheelie.

Novel DNA microarray chip predicts functional impairment and remission in rheumatoid arthritis
A new DNA microarray chip can predict severe disability and remission in patients with rheumatoid arthritis, as presented today at EULAR 2008, the Annual Congress of the European League Against Rheumatism in Paris, France.

H. Kim Lyerly appointed to the National Cancer Advisory Board
H. Kim Lyerly, M.D., director of the Duke Comprehensive Cancer Center, has been appointed by President Bush to the National Cancer Advisory Board.

Montana State University grad students earn prestigious NASA fellowships
A pair of Montana State University master's students will work with some of NASA's top scientists in laser technology to study earth's atmosphere, thanks to a prestigious research fellowship awarded in May.

Early life infections increase the risk of rheumatoid arthritis and juvenile idiopathic arthritis
Infections during the first year of life are a marker of increased risk of developing specific types of arthritis later in life, according to new research from Sweden presented today at EULAR 2008, in Paris, France.

Road pollution blamed for higher allergy risk in kids
New evidence blames traffic-related pollution for increasing the risk of allergy and atopic diseases among children by more than fifty percent.

Specific mutations in the IL2RA gene associated with juvenile idiopathic arthritis
Certain single nucleotide polymorphisms within the interleukin 2 receptor alpha (IL2RA) gene region are shown to be associated with juvenile idiopathic arthritis, according to a new study of two independent cohorts presented today at EULAR 2008, the Annual Congress of the European League Against Rheumatism in Paris.

Less hype and more research needed into new 'superbug,' say experts
Recent tabloid hype over the

What's wrong with selling kidneys?
Doctor's in this week's BMJ debate the issue of selling kidneys.

Serum sodium predicts mortality 10 times higher in PAH patients
Patients with pulmonary arterial hypertension -- chronically high blood pressure in the blood vessels of the lungs -- whose serum sodium levels are low have a very poor chance of survival and a high rate of right-heart failure, according to new research from the University of Pennsylvania.

Radical reform is needed to stop the 'inhumane' practice of transplant tourism
The UK government must bring in presumed consent to organ donation or allow a controlled donor compensation program for unrelated live donors, in order to bring the

Drug commonly used for alcoholism curbs urges of pathological gamblers
A drug commonly used to treat alcohol addiction has a similar effect on pathological gamblers -- it curbs the urge to gamble and participate in gambling-related behavior, according to a new research at the University of Minnesota.

New insight into RA patient priorities and motivators for clinical trial involvement
Two new initiatives designed to improve the management of rheumatoid arthritis through patient participation were presented today at EULAR 2008, the Annual Congress of the European League Against Rheumatism in Paris.

Oily fish can protect against RA, but smoking and psychosocial stress increase its risk
New data show that intake of oily fish is associated with a reduced risk of developing rheumatoid arthritis, whereas psychosocial work stress and smoking can increase the risk of developing the condition.

Outsourcing jobs leaves the American white-collar worker behind
Outsourcing might be good for American corporations, but it's not necessarily good for American workers, and it's likely to be bad for the American economy, even in the long run.

Precision blood pressure measurement to improve heart health
A University of Queensland researcher is trialling new, cutting-edge technology for measuring blood pressure and the health of the heart.

Scientists confirm that parts of earliest genetic material may have come from the stars
Scientists have confirmed for the first time that an important component of early genetic material which has been found in meteorite fragments is extraterrestrial in origin, in a paper published on June 15, 2008.

TAU announces new 'supercenter' for renewable energy
Center will explore clean energy production through transformational technologies and unique multidisciplinary approach. 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