Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

March 03, 2009
Psychologists' study finds TV ratings for kids' shows don't reflect aggressive content
A new study by psychologists from Iowa State University and Linfield College has found that TV ratings don't accurately reflect the aggressive content found in shows popular among children -- even cartoons.

New research in AJN shows link between nurse's criminal history and professional misconduct
A study published in the March issue of the American Journal of Nursing found that almost 40 percent of nurses who were on probation for professional misconduct in 2001 committed another act of misconduct between 2001 and 2005.

Protein function and chromatin structure methods featured in Cold Spring Harbor Protocols
Two new methods for analyzing the roles played by proteins in cells are featured in the March issue of Cold Spring Harbor Protocols.

New design means cheaper, more sustainable construction
People are always looking for ways to make something less expensive and more environmentally friendly -- and a team of researchers from North Carolina State University has figured out how to do both of those things at once when raising the large scale buildings of the future.

Lack of ability does not explain women's decisions to opt out of math-intensive science careers
Women don't choose careers in math-intensive fields, such as computer science, physics, technology, engineering, chemistry, and higher mathematics, because they want the flexibility to raise children, or because they prefer other fields of science that are less math-intensive -- not because they lack mathematical ability, according to a new study.

High novelty-seeking and low avoidance of harm contribute to alcohol dependence
Individuals with the inactive form of aldehyde dehydrogenase-2 normally don't drink alcohol because it causes flushing, nausea, and headaches.

Leading geoscientists to discuss alternative energy, water, health and public policy issues
More than 300 geoscientists will gather soon for the 43rd Annual Meeting of the South-Central Section of the Geological Society of America.

UK black women have double the risk of pregnancy complications
In the UK, black Caribbean and black African women have twice as much risk of experiencing severe pregnancy complications than white women, according to research published today on

Insecticidal toxin useless without 'friendly' bacteria accomplices
The toxin produced by the bacterium Bacillus thuringiensis is a popular insecticide used to control pest moths and butterflies, and in some GM pest-proof crops.

Schizophrenia linked to signaling problems in new brain study
Schizophrenia could be caused by faulty signaling in the brain, according to new research published today in the journal Molecular Psychiatry.

Why does aspirin increase the susceptibility of Helicobacter pylori to antimicrobials?
A research group from China investigated the mechanisms of aspirin increasing the susceptibility of Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) to metronidazole.

Moderate alcohol intake associated with bone protection
In an epidemiological study of men and post-menopausal women primarily over 60 years of age, regular moderate alcohol intake was associated with greater bone mineral density.

'Pre-diabetics' face heightened risk of heart disease
Older adults who have impaired glucose tolerance but who are not considered diabetic are at elevated risk for heart disease and may benefit from preventive therapies, according to a new study conducted by researchers at Albert Einstein College of Medicine of Yeshiva University.

Fowl soil additive breaks down crude oil
It is an unlikely application, but researchers in China have discovered that chicken manure can be used to biodegrade crude oil in contaminated soil.

MIT student develops new innovations to selectively kill cancer cells
When it comes to solving complex problems, Geoffrey von Maltzahn, MIT graduate student and biomedical engineer, looks to nature for solutions.

TB breakthrough could lead to stronger vaccine
A breakthrough strategy to improve the effectiveness of the only tuberculosis vaccine approved for humans provided superior protection against the deadly disease in a pre-clinical test, report scientists at the University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston in Nature Medicine's Advance Online Publication March 1.

Nurse Practitioner Healthcare Foundation co-sponsors self-care training program
The OTC Advisor is co-sponsored by the NPHF, the American Academy of Physician Assistants and the American Pharmacists Association through an educational grant from Procter & Gamble.

Prominent climate researcher to speak at UH on global warming March 5
Warren Washington, a leading expert in climate research from NCAR, will address global warming during a presentation at University of Houston.

Male mice lacking the protein PICK1 mimic one cause of infertility in men
Globozoospermia is a rare but severe male infertility disorder. Researchers have now discovered that male mice lacking the protein PICK1 are infertile and that their condition resembles men with globozoospermia, shedding new light on this human disorder.

What you see affects what you hear
Seeing the lip and face movements as a person speaks can improve your understanding of spoken words by as much as sixfold, said researchers from Baylor College of Medicine and City College of New York in a PLoS ONE report today.

New study shows how spikes in nitrite can have a lasting impact on the heart
A new study provides insight into how a short burst in nitrite can exert lasting beneficial effects on the heart, protecting it from stress and assaults such as heart attacks.

Musicians have biological advantage in identifying emotion in sound
Looking for a mate who in everyday conversation can pick up your most subtle emotional cues?

Tips from the journals of the American Society for Microbiology
The following are tips from the Journals of the American Society for Microbiology:

The youth of today -- yobs or future leaders?
Should we dismiss the youth of today or look to them as future leaders?

How multiple childhood maltreatments lead to greater adolescent binge drinking
Boston University researchers examined the relationship of binge drinking with the co-occurence of such specific childhood maltreatments as neglect, physical abuse and sexual abuse in combination and separately on adolescents.

Are vitamin supplements effective in celiac disease patients?
A research group from the Netherlands investigated the effect of vitamin supplements on homocysteine levels in patients with celiac disease.

Danger lurks underground for oak seedlings
Scientists trying to understand why oaks are starting to disappear from North American forests may need to look just below the surface to find some answers.

Prawnography shows captive bred prawns lack lust
A Queensland University of Technology researcher has filmed hours of prawn

Eugene-Springfield face Upper Willamette climate threats
Effects of climate change projected for Oregon's Upper Willamette River Basin, including Eugene-Springfield, will threaten water supplies, buildings, transportation systems, human health, forests, and fish and wildlife, according to a new report.

Fast-food density and neighborhood walkability affect residents' weight and waist size
In a research article published recently by the American Journal of Epidemiology, Oregon Research Institute scientist Fuzhong Li, Ph.D., and colleagues show that a high-density of fast food outlets was associated with an increase of three pounds in weight and .8 inches in waist circumference among neighborhood residents who frequently ate at those restaurants.

Missing link between fructose, insulin resistance found
A new study in mice sheds light on the insulin resistance that can come from diets loaded with high-fructose corn syrup, a sweetener found in most sodas and many other processed foods.

Coming undone: How stress unravels the brain's structure
The helpless behavior that is commonly linked to depression and post-traumatic stress disorder is preceded by stress-related losses of synapses -- microscopic connections between brain cells -- in the brain's hippocampal region, researchers at Yale School of Medicine report in the March 1 issue of Biological Psychiatry.

Modern medicine turning elderly fit people into patients
Modern medicine is turning healthy elderly people into patients, warns a senior doctor in an article published on today.

Birds in Flint Hills of Kansas, Oklahoma face population decline despite large habitat
The wide-open spaces of the Flint Hills may no longer provide a secure home on the range for several familiar grassland birds, according to research by a Kansas State University ecologist and her colleagues.

Georgetown researcher: 2 or more drinks a day may increase pancreatic cancer risk
Men and women who consume two or more alcoholic drinks a day could increase their risk of developing pancreatic cancer, according to a study published in Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers and Prevention, a journal of the American Association for Cancer Research.

Is telmisartan effective in treating nonalcoholic steatohepatitis?
A research group from Romania investigated the efficacy of two angiotensin receptor blockers as multivalent therapeutic agents in nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) and mild-to-moderate hypertension.

Nanostructure boosts efficiency in energy transport
Boston College chemists have grown a titanium nanostructure that delivers a 33 percent gain in power-collecting efficiency.

Supportive co-parenting may reduce some child behavior problems
Warm, cooperative co-parenting between mothers and fathers may help protect children who are at risk for some types of behavior problems, a new study suggests.

Genetic study finds treasure trove of new lizards
University of Adelaide research has discovered that there are many more species of Australian lizards than previously thought, raising new questions about conservation and management of Australia's native reptiles.

Inactivity of proteins behind longer shelf life when freezing
Frozen biological material, for example food, can be kept for a long time without perishing.

Varicella zoster infection causes severe autoimmune hepatitis
Autoimmune hepatitis (AIH) is a chronic disease of unknown etiology that is characterized by the presence of circulatory autoantibodies and inflammatory histological changes in the liver.

Using hair to manage HIV/AIDS and predict treatment success
High levels of antiretrovirals in hair correlated with success in HIV viral suppression in treatment and did so better than any of the other variables usually considered to predict response.

CSHL researchers pinpoint structure-building role for 2 noncoding RNAs
Most of the DNA in the nucleus of each of our cells is converted into RNA, but only a small fraction of these RNAs

New research shows that workplace discrimination increases in times of economic turmoil
New research by Eden King, assistant professor of psychology at George Mason University, suggests that workplace discrimination can actually increase when people feel threatened by outside factors such as finances.

Teenagers do listen to their parents when it comes to smoking
Parents can help their teenagers to never start smoking. A Swedish study published in the open access journal BMC Public Health has found that adolescents respond positively to their parents' attitudes towards smoking.

Salk scientists detect molecular obesity link to insulin resistance, type II diabetes
A molecular switch found in the fat tissue of obese mice is a critical factor in the development of insulin resistance, report scientists at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies.

UT nanoscientist gets $7 million DoD Innovator Award for breast cancer research
Mauro Ferrari, Ph.D., a nanomedicine scientist at the University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston and The University of Texas M.

Drugs that act on 'fasting signal' may curb insulin resistance in obese
A report in the March issue of Cell Metabolism, a Cell Press publication, has found that a signal known to play a role during fasting also switches on early in the fat tissue of obese mice as they progress toward type 2 diabetes.

World's experts identify the hottest trends in biology and medicine
With the growing volume of online scientific data, a new style of journal offers a digest of the research that will have a direct impact on scientists and clinicians.

Study offers clues to beating hearing loss
Researchers at the University of Leeds have made a significant step forward in understanding the causes of some forms of deafness.

March 2009 Geology and GSA Today media highlights
Geology encompasses the vast (martian gullies) to the minute (the inner ear of teleost fish); from past (deep-sea corals and the Southern Ocean 17,000 years ago) to present (the disappearance Staghorn corals due to anthropogenic disruption of Caribbean-region ecosystems); from fire (coal fires in Wyoming and Montana; fire-fountain eruptions on Earth and the Moon) to water (flooding along the Silk Road).

Alcohol on TV makes people drink more
New research has shown for the first time that portrayals of alcohol in films and TV advertisements have an immediate effect on the amount of alcohol that people drink.

Certain combined medications following heart attack may increase risk of death
Following an acute coronary syndrome such as a heart attack or unstable angina, patients who receive a medication to reduce the risk of gastrointestinal bleeding that may be associated with the use of the antiplatelet drug clopidogrel and aspirin have an increased risk of subsequent hospitalization for acute coronary syndrome or death, according to a study in the March 4 issue of JAMA.

Stars forced to relocate near the Southern Fish
A new Hubble image shows three galaxies locked in a gravitational tug-of-war that may result in the eventual demise of one of them.

Technological competence not sufficient for success in the digital gaming machine industry
The shift from electromechanical to digital technology generated a lot of opportunities for the gaming industry, but it simultaneously created a new set of prerequisites for success.

Misplaced metamorphosis
Researchers have pinpointed the source of immature cells that spur misplaced bone growth.

Obesity linked to hormone imbalance that impacts sexual quality of life
Hormonal changes and diminished sexual quality of life among obese men are related to the degree of obesity, and both are improved after gastric bypass surgery according to a new study accepted for publication in the Endocrine Society's Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism.

Hookworms in MS trial
Scientists from the University of Nottingham will study the potential health benefits of parasitic worms as part of a study investigating treatments for people with the autoimmune condition multiple sclerosis (MS).

Study sheds new light on link between obesity and infertility
Obese women have alterations in their ovaries which might be responsible for an egg's inability to make an embryo, according to a new study accepted for publication in the Endocrine Society's Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism.

Scatological clues lead to an intimate view
Terror in the treetops: by measuring the presence of a stress hormone in the feces of male sifaka and correlating hormonal peaks with seasonal breeding events, primatologists have found hard evidence to support a far more complex social life for the cryptic lemurs than was previously theorized.

Can technology plug the educational divide?
Most teachers wouldn't choose to work in an Indian slum or a war zone, but children living there are still desperate to learn.

The truth behind 'Where's Waldo?'
With assistance from the classic book character Where's Waldo?, researchers at Barrow Neurological Institute at St.

Study shows potential for resolving type 2 diabetes with bariatric surgery
The primary risk factor for type 2 diabetes is obesity.

9 key messages about asthma in Australia
Professor Guy Marks, head of epidemiology research, Woolcock Institute said,

His and hers: Study examines the role of gender in the stigma of mental illness
A new study in Psychological Science suggests that gender biases contribute to the harmful stigma of mental illness.

Scientists find gene that modifies severity of cystic fibrosis lung disease
Researchers at Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center and colleagues have identified a gene that modifies the severity of lung disease in people with cystic fibrosis, a lethal genetic condition.

Papua New Guinea declares first national conservation area
The southeast Pacific nation of Papua New Guinea, home to some of the most biologically diverse ecosystems on Earth, has created its first national conservation area to preserve forever a swath of pristine tropical forest larger than Singapore.

With genomes, bigger may really be better
Biologists analyzing DNA in search of the molecular underpinnings of life have consistently favored species with small genomes, which are cheaper to sequence and lack the repetitive

Ethnicity and the mitochondrial aldehyde dehydrogenase 2 gene can predict drinking
The two genes that have the strongest associations with alcohol use and alcohol dependence are mitochondrial aldehyde dehydrogenase 2 and alcohol dehydrogenase IB.

Nanotechnology: Will it drive a new innovation economy for the US?
The current economic downturn highlights the importance -- and challenges -- of building a new 21st century

Is esomeprazole the best choice for reflux esophagitis patients?
A research group from China investigated the differences in symptom relief in the first seven days of administration of omeprazole, lansoprazole, pantoprazole, and esomeprazole in patients with reflux esophagitis.

Influence of 'obesity gene' can be offset by healthy diet
Children who carry a gene strongly associated with obesity could offset its effect by eating a low energy density diet, according to new research from UCL and the University of Bristol published today in PLoS ONE.

NCRP Report No. 160 on increased average radiation exposure of the US population
Scientists at the American Association of Physicists in Medicine are offering additional background information to help the public avoid misinterpreting the findings contained in a report issued today by the National Council on Radiation Protection and Measurements, a nonprofit body chartered by the US Congress to make recommendations on radiation protection and measurements.

World-famous undersea explorer and archeologist returns to ONR roots
Renowned for recovering the wreck of the RMS Titanic, deep-sea explorer and underwater archaeologist Robert D.

Alcohol consumption may increase pancreatic cancer risk
Consuming two or more drinks per day could increase a person's risk of pancreatic cancer by about 22 percent, according to data published in Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers and Prevention, a journal of the American Association for Cancer Research.

Climate change affecting Europe's birds now, say researchers
Climate change is already having a detectable impact on birds across Europe, says a Durham University-led scientific team publishing their findings to create the world's first indicator of the climate change impacts on wildlife at a continental scale.

Tropical lizards can't take the heat of climate warming
Lizards living in tropical forests in Central and South America and the Caribbean could be in serious peril from rising temperatures associated with climate change.

News tips from the Journal of Neuroscience
The following articles are featured in the March 4 issue of the Journal of Neuroscience:

Power and the illusion of control
A new study, reported in Psychological Science, shows that power can literally

Lincoln Park Zoo scientists awarded National Institutes of Health grant
Lincoln Park Zoo post-doctoral researcher Carson Murray has received a $900,000 grant over five years from one of the world's foremost medical research centers, the National Institutes of Health.

Ben-Gurion University of the Negev researchers develop new reversible, green window technology
Ben-Gurion University of the Negev researchers have developed a new, highly energy-efficient window technology, featuring two reversible panes that will save energy all year round in homes and office buildings.

Walther Cancer Foundation grant funds new IU Simon Cancer Center Web site section
A $250,000 grant from Indianapolis-based Walther Cancer Foundation has funded the creation of a new patient friendly section of the Indiana University Simon Cancer Center website.

Preventing a second stroke is focus of study at Rush University Medical Center
Rush University Medical Center is participating in a National Institutes of Health study to determine the best course of treatment to reduce the risk of stroke patients suffering another stroke.

NSF announces 2009 Alan T. Waterman award recipient
The National Science Foundation is proud to announce that 34-year-old David Charbonneau, currently the Thomas D.

Study shows why sporting heroes should thank their friends
Encouraging words from friends and family can pave the way to sporting victory, according to research released today.

Owning alcohol-branded merchandise associated with teen drinking behaviors
A new study led by Dartmouth researchers shows that young teens who own alcohol-branded merchandise seem more likely to progress to problem drinking, raising questions about the influence of these items on young people.

Lincoln Park Zoo researcher awarded prestigious conservation biology fellowship
Sarah Keenan Jacobi, Ph.D., an environmental analyst for Lincoln Park Zoo's Urban Wildlife Institute was recently selected from a pool of highly qualified candidates worldwide to receive the prestigious Smith Fellowship from the Society for Conservation Biology and the Cedar Tree Foundation.

Earth's highest known microbial systems fueled by volcanic gases
Gases rising from deep within the Earth are fueling the world's highest-known microbial ecosystems, which have been detected near the rim of the 19,850-foot-high Socompa volcano in the Andes by a University of Colorado at Boulder research team.

Half in US see another country emerging as world's technological leader
Half of all Americans expect another country to emerge this century as the world's leader in addressing technological challenges that range from the economy to global warming, according to a survey of US public opinion released Tuesday by Duke University.

AgriLife Research drip irrigation project yields promising results
Subsurface drip irrigation was able to produce up to four bales of cotton per acre with less water than conventional irrigation methods at the Texas AgriLife Research station near Chillicothe.

Program successfully teaches domestic violence victims safe use of technology
A new Washington state program designed to help victims of domestic violence increase their knowledge of how to use technology safely and help minimize the risks that technology can pose when one is in an abusive relationship has been evaluated as highly successful.

Geeks may be chic, but negative nerd stereotype still exists, professor says
Lori Kendall, a professor in the Graduate School of Library and Information Science, says despite the increased popularity of geek culture and the ubiquity of computers, the geek's close cousin, the nerd, still suffers from a negative stereotype in popular culture.

Researchers discover a potential on-off switch for nanoelectronics
Berkeley Lab researchers have shown that electrical resistance through a molecular junction -- a nanometer scale circuit element that contacts gold atoms with a single molecule -- can be turned

New study reveals: Gifted children shape their personalities according to social stigma
Gifted youths already know what they want to be when they grow up.

What drives brain changes in macular degeneration?
In macular degeneration, the most common form of adult blindness, patients progressively lose vision in the center of their visual field, depriving the corresponding part of the visual cortex of input.

Electroacupuncture protects acetylsalicylic acid-induced acute gastritis in rats
A research group from South Korea investigated the protect ive effects of electroacupuncture (EA) pretreatment on acetylsalicylic acid (ASA)-induced ulceration in rats.

Coming of age on the Internet
A new study suggests the vast majority of teenagers in Western countries have access to the Internet, and most appear to use the technology to nurture their existing relationships rather than to forge new ones.

UCI scientists to study brain region linked to autism, schizophrenia
UC Irvine neuroscientists have received $2 million to study a brain region associated with language abilities. 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