Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

October 29, 2008
Supercomputer provides massive computational boost to biomedical research at TGen
In less time than the blink of an eye, the Translational Genomics Research Institute's new supercomputer at Arizona State University can do operations equal to every dollar in the recent Wall Street bailout.

Genetic clock makers at UC San Diego publish their 'timepiece' in Nature
UC San Diego bioengineers have created the first stable, fast and programmable genetic clock that reliably keeps time by the blinking of fluorescent proteins inside E. coli cells.

Promoting the healing process after a heart attack
Professor Stefanie Dimmeler, a researcher and director of the Institute for Cardiovascular Regeneration at Frankfurt's University Hospital has been awarded an ERC Advanced Grant from the European Research Council to support her research work over the next five years.

What is the origin of ethics?
On Nov. 6, McGill University will host the fourth annual Lorne Trottier Public Science Symposium.

Methane gas levels begin to increase again
The amount of methane in Earth's atmosphere shot up in 2007, bringing to an end a period of about a decade in which atmospheric levels of the potent greenhouse gas were essentially stable, according to a team led by MIT researchers.

Metal hazard from table wines
Potentially hazardous levels of metal ions are present in many commercially available wines.

If the diabetes has a direct carcinogenetic effect?
The association of type 2 diabetes mellitus with solid tumors, and particularly with hepatocellular carcinoma, has been long suspected and several studies have reported increased mortality rates for neoplastic diseases in patients with DM2.

EPA teams with National Geographic Society and World Resources Institute to map ecosystem services
The US Environmental Protection Agency is collaborating with the National Geographic Society and the World Resources Institute to develop tools that will help to fully account for the value of ecosystem services.

Caltech-led researchers find negative cues from appearance alone matter for real elections
Brain-imaging studies reveal that voting decisions are more associated with the brain's response to negative aspects of a politician's appearance than to positive ones, says a team of researchers from the California Institute of Technology, Scripps College, Princeton University, and the University of Iowa.

Interferon could be a key to preventing or treating multiple sclerosis
Multiple sclerosis results when the body's own defense system attacks nerve fibers in the brain and spinal cord.

Global methane levels on the rise again
After eight years of near-zero growth in atmospheric methane concentrations, levels have again started to rise.

A potential targets for the prevention or treatment of esophageal carcinoma
Livin may be essential for survival of certain cancer cells.

The American Journal of Nursing honors Jean and Ric Edelman
The American Journal of Nursing announced today that this year's AJN-Beatrice Renfield Caring for the Caregiver Award is being given to Jean and Ric Edelman, founders of Edelman Financial Services, for their commitment and generosity to nursing.

Fight begins to eradicate fatal parasite; first vaccines delivered following major funding award
A vaccine developed by University of Melbourne researchers that could eradicate a fatal form of brain disease will be delivered to Peru next week, and could soon be commercially available thanks to multi-million dollar funding.

Workplace obesity program shows modest effects after just 1 year
Environmental changes implemented at 12 Dow Chemical Company worksites helped employees' there achieve modest improvements in health risks, including weight management, decreasing tobacco use and blood pressure, says Emory University public health researcher Ron Goetzel, Ph.D.

African-American Canadians who receive kidney transplants fare better than those in US
African American kidney disease patients in both Canada and the United States are less likely than Caucasian Americans to have access to kidney transplants, but only African-Americans in the United States have worse health outcomes than Caucasians after a transplant is performed, according to a study appearing in the January 2009 issue of the Journal of the American Society Nephrology.

WVU study demonstrates efficacy of CT perfusion in diagnosis of acute ischemic stroke
A study conducted by a team of stroke experts from West Virginia University demonstrates that computed tomography perfusion imaging, a technology which measures blood flow and available to most hospitals, may dramatically improve fast and accurate stroke diagnosis.

Men are better at detecting infidelities
Women beware. Men are better at detecting their partner's infidelities than women.

Play at your own risk
Tel Aviv University finds that amateur sports can lead to unexpected health problems later in life.

Scientists find evidence of tsunamis on Indian Ocean shores long before 2004
A quarter-million people were killed when a tsunami inundated Indian Ocean coastlines the day after Christmas in 2004.

$8.6 million grant to MU will fund efforts to improve health literacy, health outcomes
Recently, the National Cancer Institute awarded an $8.6 million grant to the MU Health Communication Research Center, in partnership with Washington University in St.

MU study identifies patient strategies for managing symptoms of lymphedema
An estimated 2 million women in the United States are at risk of developing lymphedema, a condition that involves the chronic and abnormal swelling of the arm, chest, neck and/or back, as a complication of breast cancer treatment.

Researchers find aggressive phototherapy can improve neurodevelopmental outcomes in some preemies
Researchers at the University of Texas Medical School at Houston say the use of aggressive phototherapy reduces the odds that tiny premature infants will develop neurodevelopmental impairment such as cerebral palsy, blindness, deafness or physical or mental challenges.

Candidate markers for gastric cancer
To isolate and identify differentially expressed proteins between gastric cancer tissues and paired normal tissues by two-dimensional electrophoresis and matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization time-of-flight mass spectrometry.

The upside to allergies: cancer prevention
A new article in the December issue of the Quarterly Review of Biology provides strong evidence that allergies are much more than just an annoying immune malfunction.

Obesity, other health problems delay MS diagnosis
People with pre-existing medical conditions, such as obesity, and vascular problems such as diabetes, high blood pressure or high cholesterol, may experience a delay in being diagnosed with multiple sclerosis, or experience an increase in severity of the disease at diagnosis, according to a study published in the Oct.

WPI receives award from Homeland Security Department to advance first-responder location
Recognizing the critical need for technology that can save the lives of first responders by accurately tracking their location inside buildings, the Department of Homeland Security has awarded Worcester Polytechnic Institute $430,000 to continue to develop its own groundbreaking technology and conduct a national test of all existing indoor tracking and monitoring systems.

'Second China' offers foreign service workers first impression
Diplomats or military envoys making their first trip to China may soon have a chance to visit a Chinese office building, stop in at a traditional teahouse or hop a cab -- all before they board a plane.

New horizons forum to explore future of the global aerospace industry
The American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics is pleased to announce that leaders from government, academia and industry will convene in Orlando, Fla., Jan.

VYVANSE provided behavior, inattention and math test score improvements in children with ADHD
Shire plc, the global specialty biopharmaceutical company, announced results from a 13-hour classroom study in children aged 6 to 12 years with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, in which researchers found that VYVANSE CII controlled ADHD symptoms from the first time measured (1.5 hours) through the last time point assessed (13 hours) post-dose.

GSA honors science, stewardship, and service for 2008
Awards recognizing achievements that represent the best of the earth sciences were presented at the GSA Joint Annual Meeting in Houston, Texas, at the Presidential Address and Awards Ceremony on Saturday, Oct.

Vaginal/Caesarean combo delivery of twins safe, UT Southwestern-led research finds
Doctors need not go straight to Caesarean section when delivering twins, but can start with vaginal delivery of the first twin in many cases, researchers have found in a study led by UT Southwestern Medical Center.

New drug target in obesity: Fat cells make lots of melanin
As millions of Americans gear up for the Thanksgiving holiday, a new report published online in the FASEB Journal, may provide some relief for those leery second helpings.

November 2008 Geology and GSA Today media highlights
Geology topics include a new model for Grand Canyon erosion; opal formation on Mars; the beautiful and delicate preservation of soft tissues in the Burgess Shale of Canada; Ediacaran atmosphere, ocean, and fossil preservation, including that of an eight-armed ocean-dweller in both China and Australia; a new technique for seismic hazard studies; and arsenic contamination of drinking water.

Gender affects perceptions of infidelity
A new study in the Journal of Marital and Family Therapy explored how men and women perceive online and offline sexual and emotional infidelity.

Health-care barriers for undocumented immigrants: Raising tuberculosis risk?
A new study raises the question, do barriers to health care for undocumented immigrants increase the public health risk of tuberculosis?

A picture is worth a thousand locksmiths
UC San Diego computer scientists have built a software program that can perform key duplication without having the key.

Grapes may aid a bunch of heart risk factors, animal study finds
Could eating grapes help fight high blood pressure related to a salty diet?

November-December 2008 GSA Bulletin media highlights
The latest issue of GSA Bulletin spans the globe, examining ancient soils in Big Bend National Park, Texas; loess soils in Nebraska, including the greatest known thickness of the Peoria Loess in the world; folding, faulting, and metamorphism as seen in detailed geologic mapping across Pakistan; tectonic fractures in Southeast Viti Levu, Fiji; subsidence in Mexico City; groundwater arsenic in Araihazar, Bangladesh; the formation of the Andes and earthquakes in the Seattle fault zone.

Facing fears early may reduce childhood anxiety
Helping children face their fears may be more productive than focusing on other techniques to help them manage their anxieties, according to research presented at the annual meeting of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry in Chicago.

Israelis have abandoned belief of peacefully integrating into the Middle East
A new article in the journal Middle East Policy, Ian S.

European computer scientists seek new framework for computation
There have been several revolutions during the 60 year history of electronic computation, such as high level programming languages and client/server separation, but one key challenge has yet to be fully resolved.

Predicting boom and bust ecologies
While scholars may be a long way from predicting the ins and outs of the economy, University of Calgary biologist Edward McCauley and colleagues have uncovered fundamental rules that may govern population cycles in many natural systems.

Human diet gives deadly bacteria a target
University of Adelaide scientists are part of an international research team that has uncovered the first example of a bacterium causing disease in humans by targeting a molecule that is incorporated into our bodies from our diet.

A new Eph receptor tyrosine kinase overexpressed in gastric cancer was found
The Ephrin receptors constitute the largest family of tyrosine kinase receptors.

Ultrasound shown to exert remote control of brain circuits
In a twist on nontraditional uses of ultrasound, a group of neuroscientists at Arizona State University has developed pulsed ultrasound techniques that can remotely stimulate brain circuit activity.

Powered by olive stones? Turning waste stones into fuel
Olive stones can be turned into bioethanol, a renewable fuel that can be produced from plant matter and used as an alternative to petrol or diesel.

Households significantly reduce electricity use when prices rise
A new study in the RAND Journal of Economics examined how quickly households change their electricity use when prices rise and fall rapidly.

Homosexual men have significantly lower personal incomes than heterosexual individuals
A new study in the Canadian Journal of Economics provides the first evidence on sexual orientation and economic outcomes in Canada.

Researchers find new way of measuring 'reality' of virtual worlds
A research team, led by North Carolina State University's Dr.

Well-known drug (AAT) could overcome obstacles to islet transplantation, BGU professor reports
Researchers from Ben-Gurion University of the Negev in Beer-Sheva, Israel have demonstrated that treating diabetic animals with alpha-1-antitrypsin following an islet transplantation procedure eliminates the inflammation that causes islet transplants to fail.

2 Dutch researchers analyze striking behavior of Web surfers
What behavior do Web site visitors exhibit? Do they buy a specific product mainly on Mondays?

Toxicity of breast cancer treatment can be a marker of its success (ATAC trial)
The occurrence of hot flushes, cold and night sweats (vasomotor symptoms), and joint symptoms in breast cancer patients receiving endocrine treatment can indicate a reduced chance of cancer recurrence and thus act as a marker for treatment success.

New study indicates that exercise prevents fatty liver disease
A new University of Missouri study indicates that the negative effects of skipping exercise can occur in a short period.

Our cheatin' brain: The brain's clever way of showing us the world as a whole
Boundary extension is a mistake that we often make when recalling a view of a scene -- we will insist that the boundaries of an image stretched out farther than what we actually saw.

A glacier's life
Ecole Polytechnique Federale de Lausanne researchers have developed a numerical model that can re-create the state of Switzerland's Rhône Glacier as it was in 1874 and predict its evolution until the year 2100.

Nanoscale dimensioning is fast, cheap with new NIST optical technique
A novel technique under development at NIST uses a relatively inexpensive optical microscope to quickly and cheaply analyze nanoscale dimensions with nanoscale measurement sensitivity.

Seismic cyclic loading test of SRC columns confined with 5-spirals
New research shows successful application of a new type of confinement steel cage named

Eating red meat sets up target for disease-causing bacteria
Offering another reason why eating red meat could be bad for you, an international research team, including University of California, San Diego School of Medicine professor Ajit Varki, M.D., has uncovered the first example of a bacterium that causes food poisoning in humans when it targets a non-human molecule absorbed into the body through red meats such as lamb, pork and beef.

Rhode Island Hospital study finds local retail meat safe from antibiotic-resistant organisms
Rhode Island Hospital researchers report that findings from a new study of retail meat in the Providence, RI area indicate little to no presence of antibiotic-resistant bacteria.

Endorsement effects: Are voters influenced by newspaper picks?
More than 150 newspapers across the country have already endorsed Sen.

Predatory bacterial swarm uses rippling motion to reach prey
Like something from a horror movie, the swarm of bacteria ripples purposefully toward their prey, devours it and moves on.

In first national survey, patients give low scores to hospitals
A new study by Harvard School of Public Health researchers analyzed the first national data on patients' experiences in hospital settings and found that though patients are generally satisfied with their care, there is substantial room for improvement in a number of key areas, including pain management and discharge instructions.

Nutrition and bone health session to open the IOF World Congress on Osteoporosis in Bangkok
The IOF World Congress on Osteoporosis, the largest scientific conference devoted primarily to osteoporosis, will open on Dec.

Membrane fusion at the synapse: Janus faced synaptotagmin-1 helps to keep the fast pace
Dr. Christian Rosenmund, professor of neuroscience and molecular and human genetics at Baylor College of Medicine, and graduate student Mingshan Xue use that analogy to describe the action of synaptotagmin-1, which acts to catalyze the fusion of the membranes of tiny neurotransmitter-filled bubbles called vesicles with the wall membrane of a neuron.

FSU Historian's Arctic research has him sitting on top of the world
It's one of the coldest and most remote areas on Earth, but the Arctic region has long held great strategic interest for a number of nations.

Researchers find new chemical key that could unlock hundreds of new antibiotics
Chemistry researchers at the University of Warwick and the John Innes Center, have found a novel signalling molecule that could be a key that will open up hundreds of new antibiotics unlocking them from the DNA of the Streptomyces family of bacteria.

Sniffing out a better chemical sensor
Marrying a sensitive detector technology capable of distinguishing hundreds of different chemical compounds with a pattern-recognition module that mimics the way animals recognize odors, NIST researchers have created a new approach for 'electronic noses' that is more adept than conventional methodologies at recognizing molecular features even for chemicals it has not been trained to detect.

Similarities in imaging the human body, Earth's crust focus of conference at UH
Whether it's in the human body or under the Earth's crust, modeling the unseen involves many similar techniques.

Genetic link to gender identity
In the largest ever genetic study of male to female transsexuals, Australian researchers have found a significant genetic link between gender identity and a gene involved in testosterone action.

1,000 tags reveal mysteries of giant bluefin tuna
A 1,250-pound giant bluefin tuna caught in the Gulf of St.

Jefferson Department of Surgery announces new pancreas tumor registry
Charles J. Yeo, M.D., Samuel D. Gross Professor and Chair, Department of Surgery at Jefferson Medical College of Thomas Jefferson University, announces the establishment of the new Jefferson Pancreas Tumor Registry.

A card-swipe for medical tests
University of Utah scientists successfully created a sensitive prototype device that could test for dozens or even hundreds of diseases simultaneously by acting like a credit card-swipe machine to scan a card loaded with microscopic blood, saliva or urine samples.

Media coverage affects how people perceive threat of disease: study
Popular media coverage of infectious diseases greatly influences how people perceive those diseases, making them seem more dangerous, according to a new study from McMaster University.

Heart rate-lowering drug improves exercise capacity in patients with stable angina
An analysis of the data from treadmill exercise tests shows that patients who were treated with ivabradine in addition to a beta blocker demonstrated a threefold improvement in total exercise duration at four months compared to those being treated with standard doses of beta blocker alone.

National grants further WA Medical Research
National grants totalling more than $6 million dollars have been awarded to the state's premier medical research facility, the Western Australian Institute for Medical Research, in support of a range of ground-breaking, world-first research projects.

NJIT sustainability expert to discuss high performance schools at seminar
NJIT sustainability expert Deane Evans will provide an introduction to the basics of building green, high performance primary and secondary schools at a free seminar, open to the public, at NJIT.

Dr. Henry Barnett becomes first person outside Europe to receive Karolinska Stroke Award
Dr. Henry JM Barnett, London, Ontario, Canada receives the Karolinska Stroke Award for Excellence in Stroke Research.
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