Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

September 05, 2008
3T MRI leads to better diagnosis for focal epilepsy
3T MRI is better at detecting and characterizing structural brain abnormalities in patients with focal epilepsy than 1.5T MRI, leading to a better diagnosis and safer treatment of patients, according to a recent study conducted at the Oregon Health and Science University in Portland, Ore.

Computerized reminder system drove up colon cancer screening rates, U-M study found
A computerized reminder system used in community-based primary care doctors' offices increased colorectal cancer screening rates by an average of 9 percent, according to a new study from the University of Michigan Health System.

Creating lung cancer risk models for specific populations refines prediction
Lung cancer risk prediction models are enhanced by taking into account risk factors by race and by measuring DNA repair capacity, according to research teams led by epidemiologists at the University of Texas M.

Functional food -- delicious and healthy
Linseed is said to protect against cancer -- but not everybody likes the taste.

Nutritionists of the UGR suggest diet improvements during Ramadan
Researchers from the UGR have analyzed the diet followed by thirty students aged between 19 and 27 during Ramadan.

LHC switch-on fears are completely unfounded
A new report published Sept. 5 provides the most comprehensive evidence available to confirm that the Large Hadron Collider's switch-on, due on Wednesday next week, poses no threat to mankind.

JCI online early table of contents: Sept. 5, 2008
This release contains summaries, links to PDFs and contact information for the following newsworthy papers to be published online, September 5, 2008, in the JCI:

INCF organizes the first congress dedicated to the emerging field of neuroinformatics
The first INCF Congress of Neuroinformatics will convene Sept. 7-9 at the Stockholm City Conference Center in Stockholm.

Is morality universal and should the law care?
Discoveries about the ways our minds work lead us to ask important questions concerning the law.

Atomic structure of the mammalian 'fatty acid factory' determined
Mammalian fatty acid synthase is one of the most complex molecular synthetic machines in human cells.

Patients will face delays in getting diagnostic scans due to severe shortage of imaging agents
A global shortage of medical isotopes used in over 80 percent of routine diagnostic nuclear imaging procedures such as heart imaging, bone scans and some cancer detection procedures, will cause delays and cancellations to diagnostic examinations across the UK and Europe in the next few weeks, predict experts on bmj.com today.

NIH launches unique effort to advance study of urologic chronic pelvic pain disorders
The National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, part of the National Institutes of Health, announces awards to eight academic research centers to conduct collaborative studies of urologic chronic pelvic pain disorders by looking for clues outside the bladder and prostate.

What is a gene?
Even scientists define

Biophysical Society names 2009 award recipients
The Biophysical Society is pleased to announce the recipients of its 2009 Society awards.

Free drug samples may end up costing uninsured more
Free drug samples provided to physicians by pharmaceutical companies could actually be costing uninsured patients more in the long run, according to a study done by researchers at Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center and colleagues.

Old before their time? Aging in flies under natural vs. laboratory conditions
Evolutionary studies of aging use short-lived animals under laboratory conditions -- constant temperature and humidity, no parasites, superabundant food.

How memories are made, and recalled
For the first time, scientists at UCLA and the Weizmann Institute of Science in Israel have recorded individual brain cells in the act of calling up a memory, thus revealing where in the brain a specific memory is stored, and how it is able to recreate it.

Updated guidelines for stem cell research released
The National Academies today released amended guidelines for research involving human embryonic stem cells, revising those that were issued in 2005, and updated in 2007.

International experts collect alpine fungi in Beartooth Mountains of Montana
Some of the world's top experts on fungi recently collected fungi and mushrooms above tree line in the Beartooth Mountains near Red Lodge, Mont.

Michigan integral to world's largest physics experiment
After 20 years of construction, a machine that could either verify or nullify the prevailing theory of particle physics is about to begin its mission.

Best way to treat malaria: Avoid using same drug for everyone, scientists say
A team of scientists employing a sophisticated computer model pioneered at Princeton University and Resources for the Future has found that many governments worldwide are recommending the wrong kind of malaria treatment.

How STDs increase the risk of becoming infected with HIV
Individuals who have a sexually transmitted disease and women with yeast and bacterial vaginal infections have an increased risk of becoming infected with HIV if exposed to the virus through sexual contact.

Recovery efforts not enough for critically endangered Asian vulture
Captive breeding colonies of a critically endangered vulture, whose numbers in the wild have dwindled from tens of millions to a few thousand, are too small to protect the species from extinction, a University of Michigan analysis shows.

African-Americans have unique lung cancer risks from chronic obstructive pulmonary disease
Scientists at the M.D. Anderson Cancer Center have developed a risk prediction assessment for lung cancer specifically for African-Americans that suggests a greater risk from chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, according to a report published in the September issue of Cancer Prevention Research, a journal of the American Association for Cancer Research.

Tracking the reasons many girls avoid science and math
New research by a team that includes vocational psychologists at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee indicates that the self-confidence instilled by parents and teachers is more important for young girls learning math and science than their initial interest.

Science paper examines role of aerosols in climate change
It appears that aerosol effects on clouds can induce large changes in precipitation patterns, which in turn may change not only regional water resources, but also may change the regional and global circulation systems that constitute the Earth's climate.

Iowa State wins $18.5M grant to create NSF Center for Biorenewable Chemicals
The National Science Foundation has awarded Iowa State University and its research partners an $18.5 million grant to establish an NSF Engineering Research Center for Biorenewable Chemicals based at Iowa State.

Molecular evolution is echoed in bat ears
Bats' ability to echolocate may have evolved more than once, according to research published this week by Queen Mary, University of London scientists.

Hurricane Gustav
The development and path of Hurricane Gustav is shown via a sequence of satellite images acquired by Envisat's Medium Resolution Imaging Spectrometer instrument on Aug.

Disruption-free videos
Standardized video coding techniques still have their snags -- digitally transmitted images are not always disruption-free.

Lightweight and long-legged males go the distance for sex
Giant weta females are twice the size of males. Radiotracking the insects showed that males travel more than 90 meters each night in search of a mate, favoring small, long-legged males who walked further and acquired more mates.

Extra payments to Medicare Advantage plans to total $8.5 billion in 2008
Private Medicare Advantage plans will be paid an average 12.4 percent more per enrollee in 2008 compared to what the same enrollee would have cost in the traditional Medicare fee-for-service program, according to a new report from the Commonwealth Fund.

UNC spin-off company receives $2 million grant to market cancer treatment technology
A University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill spin-off company has been awarded a $2 million grant to commercialize a new technology to improve radiation treatment of prostate cancer.

Tracking down the menace in Mexico City smog
Chemical scientists at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory were part of the multinational MILAGRO team who showed that, bad as the traffic is, the most harmful air pollution in Mexico City may not come from burning fossil fuels.

NIST and partners identify tiny gold clusters as top-notch catalysts
Using a pair of scanning transmission electron microscopy instruments for which spherical aberration is corrected, researchers at NIST, Lehigh University and Cardiff University for the first time achieved state-of-the-art resolution of gold nanocrystals absorbed onto iron oxide surfaces that can catalyzed a variety of reactions, including the oxidation of carbon monoxide to carbon dioxide.

Wireless technologies used today based on decades of work at Virginia Tech
Technologies used today by companies, such as Direct TV, Iridium Satellite, Bluetooth and Globalstar, are based on satellite communications efforts started at Virginia Tech four decades ago in its Bradley Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering.

Technology users are failing to take adequate steps to protect their digital privacy
In the face of technology that will soon be able not only to track an individual's movements but predict them too, people are far too relaxed about protecting their privacy, according to social psychologist Saadi Lahlou, writing in a special issue of Social Science Information on cognitive technologies, published today by SAGE.

1 step back ... 2 steps forward
Women with hormone-receptor positive, metastatic breast cancer may take medications for years to help keep their cancer at bay, but when the tumor becomes resistant to anti-hormonal drugs, treatment with chemotherapy becomes the only option.

Preventing a disaster: Guidelines for dealing with epidemics
Health officials have been planning for the possibility of an influenza pandemic that would overwhelm the health care system and its resources.

Addressing a health-care system in crisis
On Sept. 8, the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health will host the US Health-care System in Crisis: Achieving Universal Coverage panel, the first of a year-long series examining the state of the US health-care system and efforts to improve coverage.

Changes in urine could lead to BSE test for live animals
Researchers have demonstrated that protein levels in urine samples can indicate both the presence and progress of Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy disease in cattle.

Old sheep raising the baaa
Researchers show how sheep on a remote island off the west coast of Scotland respond to two consequences of climate change: altered food availability and the unpredictability of winter storms.

Dental fillings without gaps
Tooth cavities are usually closed with plastic fillings. However, the initially soft plastic shrinks as it hardens.

Chassapis, Hadim win $150K grant to create NJ Innovation Partnership Institute in Clean-Energy Tech
Two professors of mechanical engineering at Stevens Institute of Technology have received funding for one year at $149,934 from the New Jersey Commission on Science and Technology to establish the New Jersey Innovation Partnership Institute in Clean Energy Technology at Stevens.

Goulbourne earns NSF award to research heart stent sensors
Innovative work on a new type of heart stent sensor is earning Nakhiah Goulbourne, assistant professor of mechanical engineering at Virginia Tech, a National Science Foundation Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) award of $400,000.

Researchers study pre- and probiotic use in premature infants for a deadly intestinal disease
Scientists at UC Davis will launch a groundbreaking study to determine the best cocktail of pre- and probiotic supplements to give to premature infants to prevent a deadly intestinal disease.

Angioplasty with stenting is an alternative to endarterectomy for treating carotid artery stenosis
Carotid angioplasty with stenting and endarterectomy show similar effectiveness for preventing ipsilateral stroke at 2 years and 4 years after the procedure in patients with symptomatic stenosis of the carotid artery.
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