Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

December 19, 2008
Shame on us: Shaming some kids makes them more aggressive
Aren't you ashamed of yourself? All these years, you've been trying to build up your child's self-esteem, and now a growing body of research suggests you may be making a big mistake.

Replicating Milgram: Researcher finds most will administer shocks when prodded by 'authority figure'
Nearly 50 years after one of the most controversial behavioral experiments in history, a social psychologist has found that people are still just as willing to administer what they believe are painful electric shocks to others when urged on by an authority figure.

Study compares the racial consciousness of black and Asian-Americans
Asian Americans are less attached to their racial identity than black Americans.

New edition of laboratory manual includes cutting-edge techniques to study gene regulation
A new edition of a popular laboratory manual on transcriptional regulation has just been published by Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press.

Carnegie Institution wins grant to preserve historic photos
The Carnegie Institution has been awarded a $9,400 grant from the Center for History of Physics, American Institute of Physics, to preserve and enhance access to a collection of historic photographs of scientific instruments and apparatus in the archives of the Department of Terrestrial Magnetism.

Launch of consultation on STFC strategy
The Science and Technology Facilities Council is at noon today launching a consultation on its strategy, which will be open until March 20, 2009.

Breathing life into injured lungs: World-first technique will expand lung donor organ pool
For the first time in the world, transplant surgeons at Toronto General Hospital, University Health Network, used a new technique to repair an injured donor lung that was unsuitable for transplant, and then successfully transplanted it into a patient.

No pain after the operation: The QUIPS Project
Postoperative pain can be reduced. This has been shown by four of the six hospitals which took part in the project for quality improvement in postoperative pain management (QUIPS).

Say it in song: Cornell researcher deciphers the meaning within bird communication
To many people, bird song can herald the coming of spring, reveal what kind of bird is perched nearby or be merely an unwelcome early morning intrusion.

TGen, Scottsdale Healthcare, Mayo Clinic study new drug to stimulate immune system of cancer victims
Testing of new cancer drug started at TGen Clinical Research Services at Scottsdale Healthcare and at Mayo Clinic in Arizona.

Archaeological discovery: Earliest evidence of our cave-dwelling human ancestors
A research team led by Professor Michael Chazan, director of the University of Toronto's Archaeology Center, has discovered the earliest evidence of our cave-dwelling human ancestors at the Wonderwerk Cave in South Africa.

International public-private partnership offers new paradigm for medicinal chemistry
The Wellcome Trust has announced a £4.1 million ($6.1 million) investment in a new initiative to generate small molecule inhibitors --

Stronger coastal winds due to climate change may have far-reaching effects
Future increases in wind strength along the California coast may have far-reaching effects, including more intense upwelling of cold water along the coast early in the season and increased fire danger in Southern California, according to researchers at the Climate Change and Impacts Laboratory at UC Santa Cruz.

Mayo Clinic study finds increased risk of pneumococcal disease in asthma patients
Mayo Clinic research shows adults with asthma are at increased risk of serious pneumococcal disease caused by Streptococcus pneumonia, the most common bacteria causing middle ear infections and community acquired pneumonia.

Trends in sexual behaviors similar for teens who take few health risk and those who take many
Adolescent health risk behaviors often occur together, suggesting that youth involvement with one risk behavior may inform understanding of other risk behaviors, but in a study to examine the association between involvement in nonsexual risk behaviors and trends among sexual behaviors, Mailman School of Public Health researchers found that sexual behaviors vary considerably between those youth engaged in no-risk health behaviors and those engaged in multiple health risk behaviors.

2 Brookhaven Lab physicists receive Presidential Early Career Award
Two physicists at the US Department of Energy's Brookhaven National Laboratory -- Mickey Chiu and Hooman Davoudiasl -- were among 68 researchers honored at a White House ceremony today as recipients of the prestigious Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers.

Samuel Stupp to receive honorary doctorate from TU/e
Eindhoven University of Technology (TU/e) in The Netherlands will award an honorary doctorate to Dr.

13 UCR faculty members recognized by American Association for the Advancement of Science
Thirteen University of California, Riverside, researchers have been named fellows of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

Perception of health and balance has direct impact on walking activity, new study says
New research out of the University of Pittsburgh indicates that patients' perceptions of their own health and balance have an impact on how much they walk.

Unusual microbial ropes grow slowly in cave lake
Deep inside the Frasassi cave system in Italy and more than 1,600 feet below the Earth's surface, divers found filamentous ropes of microbes growing in the cold water, according to a team of Penn State researchers.

'Green' chemicals closer to market
Rice University and Roquette Freres have signed a licensing deal to enable bio-based production of succinic acid, a substance used in plastics, textiles, drugs and solvents and as a food additive.

Prophylactic antibiotics, air quality control and barrier isolation combined reduce mortality
A combination of prophylactic antibiotics, barrier isolation and air quality control measures substantially reduces the risk of death in high-risk cancer patients who are immunocompromised due to chemotherapy or stem cell transplantation.

Roger Penrose and Frank Wilczek lectures now available online
Sir Roger Penrose and Prof. Frank Wilczek share their scientific views in two new presentations, now viewable online.

Asia's first Kauffman Campus to be set up at NTU
Nanyang Technological University has become the first Kauffman Campus in the world outside of the United States following a Memorandum of Understanding between Nanyang Technological University and the Ewing Marion Kaufmann Foundation.

UT Southwestern researchers identify gene linked to inherited form of fatal lung disease
Researchers at UT Southwestern Medical Center have determined that a mutation in a gene known for its role in defending the lungs against invading pathogens is responsible for some inherited cases of a lethal lung disease affecting older adults.

Published reports inaccurate concerning alcohol consumption during pregnancy
A national alcohol research group is concerned that the media's misinterpretation of a recent British research study could encourage pregnant women to be more at ease with temperate alcohol consumption.

ESC statement on the control of type 2 diabetes
A study published by the Journal of the American Medical Association on Dec.

New study shows that a cough medicine ingredient could effectively treat prostate cancer
A study published today in the December issue of the European medical journal Anticancer Research demonstrates that an ingredient used in a common cough suppressant may be useful in treating advanced prostate cancer.

M. D. Anderson neurosurgeon, Amy Heimberger, M.D., receives presidential award
Amy Heimberger, M.D., associate professor of neurosurgery at the University of Texas M.

Eating at buffets plus not exercising equals obesity in rural America
In small towns in the Midwestern United States, people who eat out often at buffets and cafeterias and who perceive their community to be unpleasant for physical activity are more likely to be obese.

NRAO welcomes Taiwan as a new 'North American' ALMA partner
Taiwan's astronomy community, with funding from Taiwan's National Research Council, joins the North American component of the international partnership that is building the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array.

Arizona State University geographer receives presidential science award
Arizona State University geographer Paul Torrens is among the newest recipients of the competitive Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers.

Groundbreaking, inexpensive, pocket-sized ultrasound device can help treat cancer, relieve arthritis
A prototype of a therapeutic ultrasound device, developed by a Cornell graduate student, fits in the palm of a hand, is battery-powered and packs enough punch to stabilize a gunshot wound or deliver drugs to brain cancer patients.

Vulnerability to post-traumatic stress disorder runs in families, study shows
UCLA researchers have discovered that vulnerability to post-traumatic stress disorder, anxiety and depression run in families.

Brown physics professor wins prestigious White House award
Anastasia Volovich, the Richard and Edna Salomon Assistant Professor of Physics, has been named a winner of the Presidential Early Career Awards for Scientists and Engineers.

CAT scan reveals inner workings of volcano island
On the ground and in the water, an international team of researchers has been collecting imaging data on the Soufriere Hills Volcano in Montserrat to understand the internal structure of the volcano and how and when it erupts.

New research program for energy innovations
International research collaborations seeking new ways to fuel transportation will get kick-started by a $2.2 million program sponsored by the University of Michigan and Fraunhofer.

How mirror neurons allow us to learn and socialize by going through the motions in the head
The old adage that we can only learn how to do something by trying it ourselves may have to be revised in the light of recent discoveries in neuroscience.

Abrupt climate shifts may move faster than thought
The United States could suffer the effects of abrupt climate changes within decades -- sooner than some previously thought -- says a new government report.

Drinkers with the alcohol dehydrogenase 1C*1 gene are at greater risk of colorectal cancer
Chronic drinking is a known risk factor for colorectal cancer, possibly due to the creation of acetaldehyde by the alcohol dehydrogenase enzyme.

Prenatal alcohol exposure damages white matter, the brain's connective network
Prenatal alcohol exposure can cause a wide array of problems, including cognitive dysfunction.

NTU first regional institution to benefit from a revolutionary online learning tool
Nanyang Technological University has become the first educational institution in the region to benefit from a powerful online learning design and delivery tool that supports its professors in their development of a creative and interactive teaching pedagogy as well as allowing for students individual learning styles and preferences.

Caltech scientists create titanium-based structural metallic-glass composites
Scientists from the California Institute of Technology have created a range of structural metallic-glass composites, based in titanium, that are lighter and less expensive than any the group had previously created, while still maintaining their toughness and ductility -- the ability to be deformed without breaking.

Haag honored with Presidential Early Career Scientists Award
US Forest Service Southern Research Station Fisheries Research Biologist Wendell Haag, Ph.D., received the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers during a ceremony today at the White House.

Men sexually abused in childhood 10 times more likely to contemplate suicide
Sexual abuse in childhood increases the risk of suicide in men by up to ten times, say researchers from the University of Bath, UK.

New one-of-a-kind technology will fly on 2 NASA missions
Engineers at the University of Idaho have developed unique new technology that will be used in upcoming NASA missions that will study the Earth and sun-earth connection.

Case Western Reserve professor helps control infectious diseases with models and math
Professor David Gurarie is developing mathematical models to track and analyze symptoms, treatment outcomes and environmental conditions that affect diseases like malaria and schistosomiasis, also known as

Earth not center of the universe, surrounded by 'dark energy': UBC cosmologists
Earth's location in the Universe is utterly unremarkable, despite recent theories that propose toppling a foundation of modern cosmology, according to a team of University of British Columbia researchers. 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