Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

October 07, 2008
Get moving: Johns Hopkins research shows early mobility better than bed rest for ICU patients
A critical care specialist at Johns Hopkins who has reviewed recent studies of intensive care unit (ICU) patients and data from the Johns Hopkins Hospital concludes that the routine use of deep sedation and bed rest in ICU patients may be causing unnecessary and long-term physical impairment and poor quality of life after hospital discharge.

Mentally ill smoke at 4 times the rate of general population, says University of Melbourne study
Australians with mental illness smoke at four times the rate of the general population, says a new study from the University of Melbourne.

Mayo Clinic conference on continuing medical education for physicians
As medicine undergoes rapid transformation, North American leaders in continuing medical education have joined together to transform CME itself.

New knowledge about thermoelectric materials could give better energy efficiency
Researchers at the University of Århus, Risø-DTU and the University of Copenhagen stand jointly behind new data, just published in Nature Materials, that describes properties of thermoelectric materials, which is of great importance for their practical application.

Wheezing and asthma in young children
The diagnosis of asthma in a young child may well be more challenging to pediatricians than previously appreciated, according to a review of research and clinical experience literature by Howard Eigen, M.D., of the Indiana University School of Medicine and Riley Hospital for Children appearing in the October 2008 issue of Clinical Pediatrics.

Older renal cancer patients appear to benefit from sorafenib treatment
Older and younger patients with renal cancer derive similar benefit from sorafenib therapy and tolerate the drug equally well, according to a study published online Oct.

Protein shown to play a key role in normal development of nervous system
A protein that enables nerve cells to communicate with each other plays a key role in controlling the developing nervous system.

Barcelona Declaration 2008: Challenges and Pathways to Earth Sustainability
The Centre for Ecological Research and Forestry Applications, in the celebration of its 20th anniversary, organized a meeting whit a group of international experts to discuss the environmental future of the planet on the Oct.

An epidemiologic study of microscopic colitis in Turkey
Microscopic colitis is a chronic diarrheal disease with normal colonoscopic but abnormal histopathologic features.

2008 ozone hole larger than last year
The 2008 ozone hole -- a thinning in the ozone layer over Antarctica -- is larger both in size and ozone loss than 2007 but is not as large as 2006.

Circumcision not associated with reduced risk of HIV for men who have sex with men
An analysis of previous research indicates there is a lack of sufficient evidence that circumcision reduces the risk of human immunodeficiency virus infection or other sexually transmitted infections among men who have sex with men, according to an article in the Oct.

'Deadly dozen' reports diseases worsened by climate change
Health experts from the Wildlife Conservation Society today released a report that lists 12 pathogens that could spread into new regions as a result of climate change, with potential impacts to both human and wildlife health and global economies.

U of T creates fake proof personality test
Psychologists from the University of Toronto have developed a personality inventory that can predict who will excel in academic and creative domains, even when respondents are trying hard to fake their answers.

Use of medication for enlarged prostate not associated with increased risk of hip fracture
Use of a class of medications for treating an enlarged prostate, known as 5-α reductase inhibitors, are not associated with an increased hip fracture risk, according to a study in the Oct.

Also in the Oct. 7 JNCI
Also in the Oct. 7 issue of the Journal of the National Cancer Institute are a proposed study design aimed at improving biomarker development, a meta-analysis examining the association between nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) use and breast cancer, an animal study that deciphers the role of monocyte chemoattractant protein-1 in malignant pleural effusion, and a study of the risk factors associated with male breast cancer.

Mayo Clinic estimates new, tiny, super-sensitive probe could cut colon polyp removal in half
Based on results of a landmark study, researchers at Mayo Clinic's Florida campus see a future in which virtual biopsies will eliminate the need to remove colon polyps that are not cancerous or will not morph into the disease.

UCI study shows how fatty foods curb hunger
Fatty foods may not be the healthiest diet choice, but those rich in unsaturated fats -- such as avocados, nuts and olive oil -- have been found to play a pivotal role in sending this important message to your brain: stop eating, you're full.

Largest review of its kind associates anti-inflammatory drugs with reduced breast cancer risk
Analysis of data from 38 studies that enrolled more than 2.7 million women -- the largest of its kind -- by researchers at the University of British Columbia, Vancouver Coastal Health Research Institute and the University of Santiago de Compostela reveals that regular use of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs is associated with a 12 per cent relative risk reduction in breast cancer compared to nonusers.

Narcissistic people most likely to emerge as leaders
When a group is without a leader, you can often count on a narcissist to take charge, a new study suggests.

Deep biosphere research points to new methods for recovering petroleum
ASU researchers are using a novel approach to uncover the source of organic compounds found deep within Earth's crust; in the process, new ideas will be tested about how petroleum forms from deeply buried organic matter.

Illuminating biology: An evolutionary perspective
On Oct. 16-17, AIBS and NESCent will convene a symposium and workshop for educators at the National Association of Biology Teachers conference in Memphis, TN.

The future of interventional cardiology presented at TCT 2008
Transcatheter Cardiovascular Therapeutics is the annual scientific symposium of the Cardiovascular Research Foundation.

St. John's wort relieves symptoms of major depression
New research provides support for the use of St. John's wort extracts in treating major depression.

Groundbreaking, lifesaving TB vaccine a step closer
Researchers at Aberystwyth University, following a number of years of investment by the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council, have licensed ground-breaking research to a non-profit product development partnership working to develop new, more effective vaccines against tuberculosis.

Rong Li Lab probes mechanism of asymmetry in meiotic cell division
The Stowers Institute's Rong Li Lab has characterized a mechanism that allows for asymmetrical cell division during meiosis in oocytes.

UT researchers to study massive transfusion at major trauma centers
The US Department of Defense has awarded the University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston a $9.2 million grant to conduct a multi-center clinical trial that could lead to an improved survival rate for trauma patients -- both soldiers and civilians -- who require massive blood transfusions.

Atomic-resolution views suggest function of enzyme that regulates light-detecting signals in eye
An atomic resolution view of an enzyme found only in the eye is providing clues about how the enzyme is activated.

New lab manual focuses on essential methods for purifying and characterizing proteins
A new, user-friendly laboratory manual for protein purification and analysis has just been released by Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press.

Population growth puts dent in natural resources
It's a 500-pound gorilla that Robert Criss, Ph.D., professor of earth and planetary sciences in Arts & Sciences at Washington University in St.

Climate change will affect public health -- a call to action
Extreme heat events are the most prominent cause of weather-related human mortality in the US, responsible for more deaths annually than hurricanes, lightning, tornadoes, floods and earthquakes combined.

New research on family-based HIV prevention presented at annual NIH conference
Researchers from the Bradley Hasbro Children's Research Center in Providence, R.I. presented exciting new research today at the National Institute of Mental Health Annual International Research Conference on the Role of Families in Preventing and Adapting to HIV/AIDS.

Burnham researchers turn cancer friend into cancer foe
Burnham Institute for Medical Research today announced that scientists have created a peptide that binds to Bcl-2, a protein that protects cancer cells from programmed cell death, and converts it into a cancer cell killer.

Herbal menopause therapy a good fit for breast cancer patients?
When it comes to understanding the effectiveness and safety of using herbal therapies with other drugs, much is unknown.

Probiotic bacteria don't make eczema better -- and may have side effects
There is no evidence probiotics can relieve the symptoms of eczema, but there is some evidence that they may occasionally cause infections and gut problems.

Arctic soil reveals climate change clues
Frozen arctic soil contains nearly twice the greenhouse-gas-producing organic material as was previously estimated, according to recently published research by University of Alaska Fairbanks scientists.

DFG president congratulates Harald zur Hausen on the Nobel Prize for Medicine
Award provides fresh evidence of the quality of research and science in Germany.

Stars stop forming when big galaxies collide
Astronomers studying new images of a nearby galaxy cluster have found evidence that high-speed collisions between large elliptical galaxies may prevent new stars from forming, according to a paper to be published in a November 2008 issue of the Astrophysical Journal Letters.

Discovering drugs, biofuels in tropical seas
The National Institutes of Health has awarded $4 million to a group of Philippine and American scientists led by Oregon Health & Science University to aid in the discovery of new molecules and biofuels technology from marine mollusks for development in the Philippines.

Novel Lung Cancer Vaccine Trial Launched at Moores UCSD Cancer Center
Oncologists at the Moores Cancer Center at the University of California, San Diego in La Jolla are hoping to stave off the relentless march of advanced lung cancer by treating patients with a novel kind of cancer vaccine.

Contracting pelvic floor muscles prevents urine leakage before and after pregnancy
Women who receive one-to-one instruction on how to contract the pelvic floor muscles and practice pelvic floor muscle exercises with health professional supervision are less likely to suffer urine leakage during or after pregnancy.

Hack-a-vote: Students at Rice learn how vulnerable electronic voting really is
This week undergraduate and graduate students in an advanced computer security course at Rice University in Houston are learning hands-on just how easy it is to wreak havoc on computer software used in today's voting machines.

DNA could reveal your surname
Research by University of Leicester has implications for forensics as well as genealogy.

Human Microbiome Project awards funds for technology development, data analysis and ethical research
Human Microbiome Project Awards Funds for Technology Development, Data Analysis and Ethical Research

Scent on demand: Hebrew University scientists enhance the scent of flowers
A team of scientists at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem has found a way to genetically enhance the scent of flowers and implant a scent in those that don't have one.

Early breast cancer: LHRH agonists show considerable promise
Women who have had early stage breast cancer surgically removed, and whose tumor cells are stimulated by the hormone estrogen, can benefit from taking luteinizing hormone releasing hormone antagonists, a Cochrane systematic review has concluded.

Simpler diagnostic method may be as effective at detecting blood clot in the leg
A comparison of two diagnostic methods used to detect deep vein thrombosis (DVT; a blood clot in a deep vein in the leg or thigh) of the lower extremities indicates that a simpler method, with wider availability, has rates of DVT detection that are equivalent to a more complex method, according to a study in the Oct.

Honey helps to heal wounds
Honey may reduce healing times in patients suffering mild to moderate burn wounds.

How are children choosing their food portions?
Temple University researchers are trying to pinpoint the factors that affect how much food a child eats, to stave off unhealthy relationships with food later in life.

Genetic finding implicates innate immune system in major cause of blindness
Scientists have identified one of the genes implicated in age-related macular degeneration, the most common cause of blindness in developed countries.

Red wine may lower lung cancer risk
Moderate consumption of red wine may decrease the risk of lung cancer in men, according to a report in the October issue of Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention, a journal of the American Association for Cancer Research.

Medical data 'Internet' goes live, boosts research
Medical and life scientists will be able to share information collected from many thousands of cases thanks to a digital network being launched at The Australian National University in Canberra today.

What is the influence of tumor removal on the serum level of carbohydrate's antibody?
Human blood serum contains antibodies to tumor-associated Thomsen-Friedenreich and Tn antigens but their role in cancer protection remains unclear.

Study: Even occasional smoking can impair arteries
Even occasional cigarette smoking can impair the functioning of your arteries, according to a new University of Georgia study that used ultrasound to measure how the arteries of young, healthy adults respond to changes in blood flow.

What is the pathogenesis of liver damage induced by ethanol?
They investigated the effects of ethanol on the IGF-I system with the involvement of JNK1/2 activity and ADH by using each chemical inhibitor in primary cultured rat hepatocytes.

Egg whites solve the 3-D problem
The real world is three-dimensional. That's true even in the laboratory, where scientists have to grow cells to study how they develop and what happens when their growth is abnormal.

Tamoxifen chemoprevention tied to early detection of breast cancer
The drug tamoxifen does not prevent or treat estrogen receptor negative breast cancer, but it can make the disease easier to find, researchers report in the Oct.

News tips from the Journal of Neuroscience
The following articles are featured in the Oct. 8 issue of the Journal of Neuroscience:

NIAID announces 25 new awards to develop radiation countermeasures
The National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, part of the National Institutes of Health, has awarded 25 new grants to develop new and better diagnostics and treatments for radiation exposure after a nuclear attack.

Study highlights benefits of end-of-life conversations for patients, caregivers
Despite the long-held belief by many doctors that discussing end-of-life issues with patients increases the patients' emotional distress, such conversations can actually lead to improved quality of life -- both for patients and their loved ones, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute researchers and colleagues have found.

Killing 'angry' immune cells in fat could fight diabetes
By killing off

Minnesota ecology professor wins international award for biodiversity and biofuels research
David Tilman, regents professor of ecology at the University of Minnesota, has been named the 2008 recipient of the International Prize for Biology.

New light on link between snoring and cognitive deficits in children
About two-thirds of children with sleep-disordered breathing (SDB) -- snoring or obstructive sleep apnea -- have some degree of cognitive deficit, but the severity of the cognitive deficit has been notoriously difficult to correlate to the severity of the SDB, suggesting that other important issues may be at play, or that the right factors were simply not being measured.

Study provides insight on a common heart rhythm disorder
Researchers have identified a gene variant that causes a potentially fatal human heart rhythm disorder called sinus node disease.

End-of-life discussions with physicians may have benefits for patients and caregivers
Terminally-ill patients who had end-of-life discussions with physicians were not more likely to experience emotional distress, received less aggressive medical care in their final week of life and had a better quality of life near death, compared to patients who did not have these discussions, according to a study in the Oct.

Assisted suicide laws may overlook depressed patients
One in four terminally-ill patients in the State of Oregon who opt for physician assisted suicide have clinical depression and the Death with Dignity Act may not be adequately protecting them, concludes a study published on today.

Tamoxifen chemoprevention associated with earlier diagnosis of ER-negative breast cancer
Women at elevated risk of breast cancer who had been randomly assigned to tamoxifen treatment and then developed estrogen receptor-negative breast cancer were diagnosed earlier than women who had been randomly assigned to take a placebo and then developed ER-negative disease, according to a study published online Oct.

Compassion meditation may improve physical and emotional responses to psychological stress
Data from a new study suggests that individuals who engage in compassion meditation may benefit by reductions in inflammatory and behavioral responses to stress that have been linked to depression and a number of medical illnesses.

Why could prednisolone suppress the hepatic ischemia-reperfusion injury?
Hepatic ischemia-reperfusion injury is a serious complication and unavoidable problem in liver surgery.

Electricity supply: Sustainable sources remain expensive
Ambitious government environmental objectives for the electricity sector are only possible at a high price.

Burn treatment cream may delay healing
A cream commonly used to treat burns may actually delay healing.

SNM unveils a bridge to clinical trial development for imaging biomarkers
SNM, an international scientific and medical association dedicated to advancing molecular imaging and therapy, today announced the creation of the Molecular Imaging Clinical Trials Network.

New invention that could change design of future memory storage devices
A new phase change material that has the potential to change the design of future memory storage devices has been invented.

Formoterol for asthma: Evidence of serious adverse effects
Asthma sufferers who regularly take the beta2-agonist formoterol are more likely to suffer non-fatal serious adverse events than those given placebos.

International research goal: Resilient, sustainable electric power, communications infrastructures
NSF-funded research by faculty members at five universities in two countries will extend the scope and applicability of the highly optimized tolerance approach to modeling cascading events across interdependent electric power and communications infrastructures while optimally placing resources for managing the risk of blackouts due to equipment failures or extreme natural hazards.

All counterterrorism programs that collect and mine data should be evaluated for effectiveness
All US agencies with counterterrorism programs that collect or

Withdrawal of life support often an imperfect compromise
Intensive Care Unit doctors seeking to balance the complex needs of their patients and the patients' families may make an imperfect compromise, withdrawing life support systems over a prolonged period of time.

Belt and braces approach may prevent deep vein thromboses
Combining short periods of leg compression with medications such as heparin is more effective at preventing blood clots in high-risk patients than using either preventative measure alone.

Robot designed by Fatronik-Tecnalia, finalist in international Strategic Manufacturing Awards 2008
A robot designed by the Industrial Systems Unit at Fatronik-Tecnalia for the Airbus aeronautics company has been chosen, amongst more than 100 enterprises worldwide, for competition in the prestigious international Strategic Manufacturing Awards 2008, in the category of Innovation.

Olive oil ingredient ups the time between meals
A fatty acid found in abundance in olive oil and other

Novel imaging approach may assist in predicting success of treatment for atrial fibrillation
University of Utah researchers have developed a magnetic resonance imaging-based method for detecting and quantifying injury to the wall of the heart's left atrium in patients who have undergone a procedure to treat atrial fibrillation.

Scientists simulate gut reaction to arsenic exposure
A simulated gastrointestinal system is helping scientists test contaminated soil for its potential to harm humans.

Study suggests patients in minimally-conscious state could feel pain and need painkilling treatment
A study of brain activity in brain-damaged patients in a minimally conscious state suggests that they could have similar pain perception to healthy people.

Study suggests LF elimination program is 'best buy in public health'
A study concludes that in the ten years since its initiation, the international effort to eliminate lymphatic filariasis has made a large impact towards eradication of the disease.

Bad breath? Mouthrinses work, but some cause temporary staining
Over-the-counter mouthrinses really do put a stop to bad breath.

Can stem cells heal damaged hearts? No easy answers, but some signs of hope
Recent studies indicate that infusing hearts with stem cells taken from bone marrow could improve cardiac function after myocardial infarction (tissue damage that results from a heart attack). 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