Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

September 02, 2008
Are diabetes and obesity linked to periodontitis?
The University of Illinois at Chicago has received a two-year federal grant to continue a study on how periodontitis, an inflammatory disease of the tissues surrounding teeth, is linked to type 2 diabetes and obesity.

Mom's mood, baby's sleep: what's the connection?
If there's one thing that everyone knows about newborn babies, it's that they don't sleep through the night, and neither do their parents.

How gastric bypass rapidly reverses diabetes symptoms
A report in the September Cell Metabolism, a publication of Cell Press, offers new evidence to explain why those who undergo gastric bypass surgery often show greater control of their diabetes symptoms within days.

New study finds that add-on therapy improves depressive symptoms in bipolar disorder
Dr. Michael Berk and colleagues, in a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial, evaluated the mood symptoms of individuals with bipolar disorder, half of whom received placebo and half of whom received NAC, as an add-on therapy to their usual treatment.

Galaxy Zoo -- an Internet superstar
Since Galaxy Zoo's launch in July 2007, some 150,000 members of the public, inspired by the opportunity to be the first to see and classify a galaxy, have helped professional astronomers via this on-line mass-participation project to carry out real scientific research.

Neuroscientist scans brain for clues on best time to multitask
In today's fast-paced world, multitasking has become an increasingly necessary part of our daily routine.

ASU spins out algae-based technology for jet fuel as part of biofuel initiative
Arizona State University has entered into a groundbreaking research and commercialization collaboration with Heliae Development, LLC and Science Foundation Arizona to develop, produce and sell kerosene-based aviation fuel derived from algae.

Characterization of grapevine transposons furthers understanding of in vino variety
A new study conducted by researchers at the CRAG (CSIC-IRTA-UAB) in Barcelona (Spain) in collaboration with the University of Natural Resources and Applied Life Sciences in Vienna (Austria), published in the online, open-access journal PLoS ONE, Sept.

Loss of sleep, even for a single night, increases inflammation in the body
A new article in the Sept. 15 issue of Biological Psychiatry, by the UCLA Cousins Center research team, reports that losing sleep for even part of one night can trigger the key cellular pathway that produces tissue-damaging inflammation.

Alcoholism-associated molecular adaptations
At the 21st Congress of the ECNP 2008 in Barcelona, Prof.

A virtuous cycle: Safety in numbers for riders
It seems paradoxical but the more people ride bicycles on our city streets, the less likely they are to be injured in traffic accidents.

Healthy Minds Across America features 48 public forums on mental health research, Sept. 14
Americans and Canadians concerned about the toll mental health disorders are taking on families and communities will have a unique opportunity to hear from world-class experts about the latest findings on the causes, symptoms and progression of a range of conditions, and learn about current and potential treatments.

Multi-core chip research to lead to performance gains, power reduction for high- and low-end
Leaders of the National Science Foundation and Semiconductor Research Corporation, the world's leading university-research consortium for semiconductors and related technologies, today announced a major joint initiative for multi-core chip design and architecture.

Millions face undiagnosed heart risk say researchers after mass screening
A major screening programme has revealed that a third of the UK adults at risk of cardiovascular disease have not been diagnosed.

Overcoming poor response to standard oral antiplatelet agents
The University of Ferrara Study showed that patients who respond poorly to standard oral antiplatelet agents, benefited from treatment of tirofiban.

Chandelier cells unveil human cognition
What is it that distinguishes humans from other mammals? The answer to this question lies in the neocortex -- the part of the brain responsible for sensory perceptions, conscious thought and language.

Stem cell transplantation benefits mice with childhood motor neuron disease
The motor neuron disease spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) is the second most common genetic disorder leading to death in childhood.

Pre-hospital treatment on the way to percutaneous coronary intervention
For patients with acute ST-segment-elevation AMI within 12 hours after symptom onset and with persistent ST-segment elevation, or new or presumed new left bundle-branch block with concomitant ST-segment elevation, restoring coronary blood flow as early as possible is the main goal of reperfusion strategies.

Many parents of chronically ill children in California are unaware of paid family leave program
Parents of children with special health needs in California often are not aware that there is a paid family leave insurance program available for their use, with only 5 percent of those surveyed having used the program, according to a study in the Sept.

Effects of the direct lipoprotein-associated phospholipase A2 inhibitor darapladib
Lp-PLA2 inhibition with darapladib prevented necrotic core expansion, a key determinant of plaque vulnerability.

New study by Kent State professor links early explanations of 9/11 to long-term adjustment
A new study, lead authored by Kent State University's John Updegraff, suggests that finding meaning in the immediate aftermath of the 9/11 terroist attacks was an important coping response that helped many Americans adjust by reducing their fears of future terrorism.

Study: Teen suicide spike was no fluke
After 10 years of steady decline, researchers say a recent spike in the teen suicide rate is not a fluke and new prevention strategies need to be developed.

PET scans lead to treatment changes in majority of colorectal cancer patients
In the largest multi-institutional study to date examining the impact of positron emission tomography in changing disease management of individuals with suspected recurrent colorectal cancer, researchers found that treatment plans were changed for more than half of patients, according to an article in the September issue of the Journal of Nuclear Medicine.

Esche, Chassapis awarded $500K by NSF for 'Virtual Environments for Collaborative Learning'
The National Science Foundation Division of Undergraduate Education has awarded $500,000 to two professors of mechanical engineering at Stevens Institute of Technology, to pursue the research goals laid out in their successful proposal,

An engineer of Navarre develops new methods to protect wind generators during voltage dips
In his Ph.D., Jesús López Taberna put forward two protection techniques so that wind generators continue to be operative despite breaks in electricity supply.

Hopkins researchers piece together gene 'network' linked to schizophrenia
Reporting this week in the Archives of General Psychiatry, researchers at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine have uncovered for the first time molecular circuitry associated with schizophrenia that links three previously known, yet unrelated proteins.

Researchers offer first direct proof of how osteoarthritis destroys cartilage
A team of orthopaedic researchers has found definitive, genetic proof of how the most common form of arthritis destroys joint cartilage in nearly 21 million aging Americans, according to a study published online Sept.

Data on investigational Factor Xa compound presented at European heart meeting
Data from a Phase II study of an investigational drug designed to block formation of blood clots show potential for added protection against a second heart attack or stroke among patients who are already taking state-of-the-art prevention therapy, according to researchers at the Duke Clinical Research Institute.

Gene is likely cause of stroke-inducing vascular malformations
UCSF scientists have discovered that a gene controlling whether blood vessels differentiate into arteries or veins during embryonic development is linked to a vascular disorder in the brain that causes stroke.

New stem cell tools to aid drug development
UK scientists have designed, developed and tested new synthetic molecular tools for stem cell research to direct the formation of certain tissue types for use in drug development programs.

UHN becomes a world leader in medical imaging for stroke, cancer and cardiac patients
Today, University Health Network became the first institution in the world to have three 320-slice CT scanners, as Toronto Western Hospital's scanner began clinical operation.

Battling diabetes with beta cells
Tel Aviv University replicates insulin-producing cells, providing new hope for diabetics.

Surgical technique halts cell loss, Parkinson's researchers find
Deep brain stimulation, a surgical technique often viewed as a last resort for people with Parkinson's disease, halts the progression of dopamine-cell loss in animal models, according to preliminary research by scientists at the Neuroscience Institute at the University of Cincinnati and University Hospital.

Burnham awarded $97.9M NIH grant to expand small-molecule screening and discovery center
Burnham Institute for Medical Research announced today that it has been awarded a prestigious six-year, $97.9 million Molecular Libraries Probe Production Centers Network grant from the National Institutes of Health.

Children with TVs in their room sleep less
Middle school children who have a television or computer in their room sleep less during the school year, watch more TV, play more computer games and surf the net more than their peers who don't -- reveals joint research conducted by the University of Haifa and Jezreel Valley College.

Entomological Society of America names new Fellows for 2008
The Entomological Society of America is proud to announce its selection of ten new Fellows.

Early onset gene for inflammatory bowel diseases identified
Two new genetic markers that influence the likelihood of getting Crohn's disease or ulcerative colitis during childhood have been identified.

Energy-saving bacteria resist antibiotics
Bacteria save energy by producing proteins that moonlight, having different roles at different times, which may also protect the microbes from being killed.

Nutritional research vindicates diet programs
Popular slimming programmes do result in reduced energy intake while providing enough nutrients.

Results of the APPRAISE-I dose guiding trial
Data from a phase II study of an investigational drug designed to block formation of blood clots show potential for added protection against a second heart attack or stroke among patients who are already taking state-of-the-art prevention therapy.

Nearly half of US adults will develop painful knee osteoarthritis by age 85: study
Almost half of all US adults and nearly two-thirds of obese adults will develop painful osteoarthritis of the knee by age 85, a study based at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill suggests.

Legal to freeze assets of Somalis in Sweden
The freezing of assets of the three Somalis residing in Sweden was not an infringement of international law.

Post-marketing studies finding adverse events in drugs used in children
The Food and Drug Administration Modernization Act, designed to stimulate more drug safety studies in children, has resulted in more than 130 label changes since its inception nearly six years ago, according to researchers at Duke Children's Hospital.

Innate immune system targets asthma-linked fungus for destruction
A new study shows that the innate immune system of humans is capable of killing a fungus linked to airway inflammation, chronic rhinosinusitis and bronchial asthma.

JCI online early table of contents: Sept. 2, 2008
This release contains summaries, links to PDFs and contact information for the following newsworthy papers to be published online, Sept.

News tips from the Journal of Neuroscience
The following articles are featured in the Sept. 3 issue of the Journal of Neuroscience:

Age-related memory loss tied to slip in filtering information quickly
UCSF scientists have identified a way in which the brain's ability to process information diminishes with age, and shown that this break down contributes to the decreased ability to form memories that is associated with normal aging.

New study assesses the impact of soft drink availability in elementary schools on consumption
Because children spend a substantial amount of time at school, the school food environment plays a central part in shaping eating behaviors.

Most vaccine-allergic children can still be safely vaccinated, Hopkins experts say
With close monitoring and a few standard precautions, nearly all children with known or suspected vaccine allergies can be safely immunized, according to a team of vaccine safety experts led by the Johns Hopkins Children's Center.

Study finds B-vitamin deficiency may cause vascular cognitive impairment
A B-vitamin-deficient diet caused cognitive impairment and cerebral vascular changes without evidence of neurodegeneration in mice.

The thousand-ruby galaxy
ESO's Wide Field Imager has captured the intricate swirls of the spiral galaxy Messier 83, a smaller look-alike of our own Milky Way.

How to spot a heart attack soon after it occurs
The sooner an individual who has had a heart attack is treated, the better their chance of survival and the less permanent damage is done to their heart.

UGA leads effort to swat down major vegetable disease
In the Southeast, thrips are tomato and pepper farmers' No.

Stanford's 'autonomous' helicopters teach themselves to fly
Stanford computer scientists have developed an artificial intelligence system that enables robotic helicopters to teach themselves to fly difficult stunts by watching other helicopters.

Networks for life
Implementation of networks among medical emergency services, ambulances, and hospital of different technological levels, in a hub-and-spoke framework, provides the best results and an equitable access to timely care for all patients with acute myocardial infarction.

Safety of antithrombotic treatment in acute coronary syndromes
Bleeding and possibly also blood transfusions have emerged as major contributors to worse outcome in patients with ACS Proper management of patients, with appropriate selection of doses, drugs and arterial approach, combined with systematic evaluation of the bleeding risk prior to starting therapy may help prevent bleeding and improve patient outcome.

Scientists develop new method to investigate origin of life
Scientists have developed a new computational method that they say will help them to understand how life began on Earth.

Karolinska Institutet prize awarded to innovative clinical educational researcher
Geoffrey R. Norman, professor of Clinical Epidemiology and Biostatistics at McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada, has been awarded the 2008 Karolinska Institutet Prize for Research in Medical Education.

Ondansetron reduces vomiting, hospital admissions in children with gastroenteritis
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill researchers have demonstrated that a drug called ondansetron helps reduce vomiting, the need for intravenous fluids and hospital admissions in children with acute gastroenteritis.

NIH funds 9 centers to speed application of powerful new research approach
The funding of a network of nine centers across the country that will use high tech screening methods to identify small molecules for use as probes to investigate the diverse functions of cells was announced today by the National Institutes of Health.

Complex ocean behavior studied with 'artificial upwelling'
A team of scientists is studying the complex ocean upwelling process by mimicking nature -- pumping cold, nutrient-rich water from deep within the Pacific Ocean and releasing it into surface waters near Hawaii that lack the nitrogen and phosphorous necessary to support high biological production.

Antihypertensive treatment on cognitive functions in Alzheimer's disease
At the 21st Congress of the ECNP 2008 in Barcelona, Dr.

Unexplored Arctic region to be mapped
A scientific expedition this fall will map the unexplored Arctic seafloor where the US and Canada may have sovereign rights over natural resources such as oil and gas and control over activities such as mining.

Fibrin-derived peptide FX06 reduces cardiac reperfusion injury
Data presented today at the European Society of Cardiology Congress demonstrates the effectiveness of a peptide called FX06 in preventing cardiac damage resulting from treatment following a heart attack.

Biological invasions increasing due to freshwater impoundments, says CU-Boulder study
The growing number of dams and other impoundments is increasing the number of invasive species and the speed at which they spread, putting natural lakes at risk, says a study led by the University of Colorado at Boulder.

Study confirms colorectal cancer screening should start at age 50
Colorectal adenomas, the precursor polyps in virtually all colorectal cancers, occur infrequently in younger adults, but the rate sharply increases after age 50.

Nature inspires new highly specific drugs and organic products
The best place to seek novel compounds for pharmaceutical drugs, alternative energy sources, and a host of industrial applications, is within natural systems that have evolved over millions of years.

How Salmonella bacteria contaminate salad leaves -- it's not rocket science
How Salmonella bacteria can cause food poisoning by attaching to salad leaves is revealed in new research presented today (Sept.

Scientists use remote satellite imaging to predict outbreaks of infectious disease
Scientists in the USA have established a way to predict outbreaks of cholera, making it easier to control.

Babies' rapid weight gain linked to higher blood pressure as adults
Babies who gain weight rapidly within five months of birth and from about ages 2 to 5 years have higher systolic blood pressure in young adulthood.

New European guidelines for the management of acute pulmonary embolism
Acute pulmonary embolism is a relatively common cardiovascular emergency. Clots originating in the leg veins may become detached and obstruct the lung vessels.

Zen training speeds the mind's return after distraction, brain scans reveal
After being interrupted by a word-recognition task, experienced meditators' brains returned faster to their pre-interruption condition.

New hope for treating common form of inherited neuromuscular disease
Treatments that ramp up production of the tiny

Team led by scientists from University of the Basque Country manage to measure wind details of Venus
New observations carried out with the Venus Express mission of the European Space Agency, in orbit around Venus since April 2006, have enabled the team of scientists from the University of the Basque Country to determine in detail the global structure of the winds on Venus at its level of clouds while, at the same time, to observe unexpected changes in the wind speeds, and which helped to interpret this mysterious phenomenon.

Previous claims of siRNA therapeutic effects called into question by report in human gene therapy
The many recent reports documenting the therapeutic efficacy of short interfering RNAs in animal models of human disease may actually be describing nonspecific therapeutic effects related to the ability of siRNA to activate an immune response, according to a paper in the September 2008 issue of Human Gene Therapy, a peer-reviewed journal published by Mary Ann Liebert Inc.

Honest lovers? Fallow buck groans reveal their status and size during the rut
In a new study, published Sept. 3 in the open-access journal PLoS ONE, researchers at the University of Zurich show for the first time that sexually selected vocalizations can signal social dominance in mammals other than primates, and reveal that the independent acoustic components -- fundamental frequency (pitch) and formant frequencies -- encode information on dominance status and body size, respectively.

How media covered Katrina aftermath affects response by blacks and whites
New research shows that black and white Americans responded differently when exposed to a video presentation that described Hurricane Katrina and then blamed the botched relief efforts on one of two causes: either government incompetence or racism, because the majority of Katrina's victims were black.

Dr. Yong Shi awarded NSF grant
The NSF awarded Dr. Yong Shi a grant for his project

Heart failure implementation
Heart failure is a leading cause of death and hospitalization and represents a major burden on health services.

Understanding the science of solar-based energy: more researchers are better than one
With the assistance of a five-year $20 million award from the National Science Foundation, the California Institute of Technology Chemical Bonding Center project, called

World-first trial proves exercise helps memory
West Australian health experts are urging older people to get active after proving for the first time that just 20 minutes of activity each day can prevent memory deterioration.

Virus weaves itself into the DNA transferred from parents to babies
New research from the University of Rochester Medical Center shows that some parents pass on the human herpes virus 6 (HHV-6) to their children because it is integrated into their chromosomes.

Cell division study resolves 50-year-old debate, may aid cancer research
A new study at Oregon State University has finally resolved a controversy that cellular biologists have been arguing over for nearly 50 years, with findings that may aid research on everything from birth defects and genetic diseases to the most classic

Comparison of angiography contrast agents finds little difference in certain outcomes
Use of sodium bicarbonate for hydration during coronary angiography for patients with kidney disease did not reduce the risk of developing serious kidney problems related to the use of contrast agents, compared to use of sodium chloride, according to a study in the Sept.

Australian over-50s walk away memory problems in world-first trial
An Australian study has found that walking for two and a half hours a week can significantly improve memory problems in the over-50s.

ST elevation infarction
The new 2008 ESC ST-segment-elevation acute myocardial infarction guidelines were approved by the ESC Guidelines Committee on Aug.

Using networks to map the social lives of animals
Dr. Dick James from the University of Bath has released a practical guide for biologists explaining how social network analysis, a method used widely in the social sciences to study interactions among people, can be used to study social structures within animal populations.

September Ophthalmology research highlights
Doctors and medical centers across the United States are debating the use of electronic health records.

Exercise may help improve memory problems
Adults with memory problems who participated in a home-based physical activity program experienced a modest improvement in cognitive function, compared to those who did not participate in the program, according to a study in the Sept.

With or without you: premature aging whether or not protein is modified
Hutchinson-Gilford progeria syndrome is a rare childhood disease that resembles premature aging.

Cosmic connections: Imperial scientist locates the origin of cosmic dust
The origin of the microscopic meteorites that make up cosmic dust has been revealed for the first time in new research out today (Sept.

Directing a driver's gaze results in smoother steering
A study recently published in ARVO's online Journal of Vision may inform the next generation of in-car driving assistance systems.

Black-footed ferrets sired by males that died 8 years ago
Two black-footed ferrets at the Smithsonian's National Zoo have each given birth to a kit that was sired by males who died in 1999 and 2000.

Scientists grow 'nanonets' able to snare added energy transfer
Adding to the growing list of novel nanoscale structures, Boston College researchers report engineering nanonets, flexible webs of tiny wires that improve the performance of their materials, which are used in microelectronics and clean energy research.

VCU Massey Cancer Center spearheads novel clinical study for lymphoma patients
The Virginia Commonwealth University Massey Cancer Center recently opened a National Cancer Institute-sponsored, phase II clinical study for certain sub-types of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma.

Study finds few parents of chronically ill children use California paid family leave program
California's pioneering paid family leave program has largely failed to reach one of its major target groups.

AIAA Pickering Lecture to focus on Phoenix Mars Mission
The American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics is pleased to announce that this year's William H.

Myocardial regeneration by intracoronary infusion of selected population of stem cells in AM
REGENT is the second-largest trial using bone marrow-derived cells in patients with acute MI and the first large trial for head-to-head comparison of selected and unselected cells

Broad Institute awarded grant to develop chemical probes for human biology and disease
Researchers at the Broad Institute of Harvard and MIT have been chosen to receive a six-year, approx.
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