Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

May 28, 2009
Nontoxic hull coating resists barnacles, may save ship owners millions
North Carolina State University engineers have created a nontoxic

Study finds unexpected bacterial diversity on human skin
The health of our skin depends upon the delicate balance between our own cells and the millions of bacteria and other one-celled microbes that live on its surface.

New malaria agent found in chimpanzees close to that commonly observed in humans
Researchers based in Gabon and France report the discovery of a new malaria agent infecting chimpanzees in Central Africa.

Study: Americans choose media messages that agree with their views
A new study provides some of the strongest evidence to date that Americans prefer to read political articles that agree with the opinions they already hold.

Small molecule inhibitor shows promise in trastuzumab-resistant metastatic breast cancer
Fox Chase Cancer Center researchers report that a combination of trastuzumab and neratinib a novel small molecule inhibitor of the HER2 receptor appears active in women with HER2-positive metastatic breast cancer who have progressed on previous trastuzumab based therapies.

Magnetic tremors pinpoint the impact epicenter of Earthbound space storms
Using data from NASA's THEMIS mission, a team of University of Alberta researchers has pinpointed the impact epicenter of an earthbound space storm as it crashes into the atmosphere, and given an advance warning of its arrival.

Roommate assignments key in increasing interracial friendships in college
White students generally increased their number of interracial friendships during their first year of college, while black students showed a slight decrease, according to a study at one highly selective private university.

New blood test greatly reduces false-positives in prostate cancer screening
A new blood test used in combination with a conventional prostate-specific antigen screening sharply increases the accuracy of prostate cancer diagnosis, and could eliminate tens of thousands of unneeded, painful and costly prostate biopsies annually, according to a study led by researchers at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute.

Study may aid efforts to prevent uncontrolled cell division in cancer
Researchers from the Ludwig Institute for Cancer Research at the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine, have uncovered a remarkable property of the contractile ring, a structure required for cell division.

MIT: Long-distance brain waves focus attention
Just as our world buzzes with distractions -- from phone calls to e-mails to tweets -- the neurons in our brain are bombarded with messages.

The vulnerable cancer cell
Howard Hughes Medical Institute researchers have identified many potential new drug targets for cancers long deemed

SMOS ready to ship to launch site
ESA's next Earth Explorer, SMOS, has just passed the all-important Flight Acceptance Review, signifying that all the elements that make up the mission are in place for launch later this year.

University of Maryland-led consortium wins $93 million NOAA climate institute
The University of Maryland will lead a new climate research partnership with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, North Carolina State University and 16 other institutions.

Ghost remains after black hole eruption
NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory has found a cosmic

Some donor factors affect outcomes for HCV-positive liver transplant recipients
Two new studies address donor factors that could affect outcomes for liver transplant recipients, particularly those with chronic hepatitis C (HCV).

Stanford study expands window for effective stroke treatment
Once symptoms start, there's only a tiny window of time for stroke victims to get life-saving treatment.

Breastfeeding duration and weaning diet may shape child's body composition
Variations in both milk feeding and in the weaning diet are linked to differences in growth and development, and they have independent influences on body composition in early childhood, according to a new study accepted for publication in the Endocrine Society's Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism.

Blacks more likely to opt for life-sustaining measures at end of life
When faced with a terminal illness, African-American seniors were two times more likely than whites to say they would want life-prolonging treatments, according to a University of Pittsburgh study available online and published in the June issue of the Journal of General Internal Medicine.

Spanish prostitutes least likely to use condoms
Catalan researchers have studied the prevalence of sexually-transmitted diseases among female sex workers.

Logan receives water award
Converting waste water into energy has earned Bruce Logan, Kappe professor of environmental engineering, Penn State, the 2009 National Water Research Institute's Athalie Richardson Irvine Clarke Prize for excellence in water research.

Treating gum disease helps rheumatoid arthritis sufferers
Not yet convinced about keeping your teeth healthy, here's another reason.

Antibiotic-resistant bacteria found in fertilizer
Vancomycin-resistant enterococci have been found in sewage sludge, a by-product of waste-water treatment frequently used as a fertilizer.

Lenfest forage fish task force launched
The Institute for Ocean Conservation Science at Stony Brook University has launched the Lenfest Forage Fish Task Force, a team of 13 preeminent scientists from around the world that will develop management plans to tackle the unprecedented depletion of forage fish from our oceans.

Boston University biomedical engineers teach bacteria to count
By wiring a new sequence of genes that allows the microbes to count discrete events, BU researchers, led by Professor James J.

Breakthrough made in assessing marine phytoplankton health
Researchers from Oregon State University, NASA and other organizations said today that they have succeeded for the first time in measuring the physiology of marine phytoplankton through satellite measurements of its fluorescence -- an accomplishment that had been elusive for years.

Cottonseed-based drug shows promise in treating severe brain cancer
An experimental compound showed good results for months in patients with glioblastoma multiforme, UAB researchers say.

Neurological disorder in golden retriever dogs caused by a mutation in mitochondrial DNA
Sensory ataxic neuropathy (SAN) is a recently identified neurological disorder in Golden Retriever dogs with onset during puppyhood.

Bosnia and Herzegovina joins the COST family
COST is proud to announce that Bosnia and Herzegovina is the latest country to join its network.

Stem cell study seeks to wean nonrelated transplant recipients from anti-rejection drugs
The immunosuppressive drugs required by organ transplant recipients after surgery can have serious side effects with prolonged use, including infection, heart disease and cancer.

MS patients report greater treatment satisfaction with TYSABRI
Biogen Idec and Elan Corporation plc today announced interim results from an ongoing, one-year longitudinal health-outcomes study in which patients reported significantly higher levels of treatment satisfaction after three infusions with TYSABRI (natalizumab) when compared to multiple sclerosis therapies used previously.

Is cherry juice a new 'sports drink?'
Drinking cherry juice could help ease the pain for people who run, according to new research from Oregon Health and Science University presented at the American College of Sports Medicine Conference in Seattle, Wash.

How many scientists fabricate and falsify research?
It's a long-standing and crucial question that, as yet, remains unanswered: just how common is scientific misconduct?

Scientists demonstrate all-fiber quantum logic
A team of physicists and engineers have demonstrated all-fiber quantum logic, where single photons are generated and used to perform the controlled-NOT quantum logic gate in optical fibers with high fidelity.

Immunologists identify biochemical signals that help immune cells remember how to fight infection
Immunology researchers at UT Southwestern Medical Center have discovered how two biochemical signals play unique roles in promoting the development of a group of immune cells employed as tactical assassins.

New journal on advanced glass research to debut
The American Ceramic Society announced today that it is launching of a new peer-reviewed journal dedicated to glass research: The International Journal of Applied Glass Science.

New survey highlights growing concern about risk of infection in cancer patients
Amgen today announced the results of a national Harris Interactive Inc. survey indicating that the vast majority of oncologists and infectious disease specialists are highly concerned about the negative impact infection may have on treatment outcomes in chemotherapy patients, as well as emerging antibiotic resistance.

Children of the revolution
UCL's School of Slavonic and Eastern European Studies will host a conference to mark the 20th anniversary of the 1989 democratic revolutions in Central and Eastern Europe.

NASA satellite detects red glow to map global ocean plant health
Researchers have conducted the first global analysis of the health and productivity of ocean plants, as revealed by a unique signal detected by a NASA satellite.

MU researchers offer insights for advancing health communication through digital media
In a new book,

How do filicide offenders differ from other murderers?
People who commit filicide, the killing of their own child, are no more psychotically disordered than other homicide offenders.

Few pharmacies can translate prescription labels into Spanish
Surprisingly few pharmacies in the US are able to translate prescription medication instructions into Spanish, making it difficult for patients who speak only Spanish to understand how to take their medications properly, according to a new study from Northwestern University.

Unstated assumptions color Arctic sovereignty claims
Settling the growing debate over ownership of Arctic Ocean resources is complicated by the fact that the various countries involved have different understandings of the geography of the place

Rapid approach to identify influenza A virus mutations and drug resistance developed
Genome Institute of Singapore in collaboration with Roche NimbleGen developed novel approach to uncover complete sequence of any influenza A virus, including H1NI, with just a quick nasal swab or nasal pharyngeal wash from patients.

Yellowfin tuna biz concept a winner
For the second year in a row, the annual University of Miami School of Business Entrepreneurship Competition awarded prizes to a sustainable fisheries project developed by students from the Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science.

Particle physics is not just black holes and antimatter
While the perils associated with particle physics, from Earth-gobbling black holes to Vatican-destroying amounts of antimatter, gain news headlines, it's easy to overlook the large economic and societal benefits of particle physics research.

Scientists develop a new HIV microbicide -- and a way to mass produce it in plants
In what could be a major pharmaceutical breakthrough, research published online in the FASEB Journal describes how scientists from St George's, University of London have devised a one-two punch to stop HIV.

Cardiovascular fitness not affected by cancer treatment
The cardiovascular fitness level of cancer survivors is not affected by many standard cancer therapies, say researchers from Georgetown University Medical Cancer.

Intestinal bacteria associated with nonalcoholic fatty liver disease
Intestinal permeability and an overgrowth of bacteria in the small intestine are both associated with nonalcoholic fatty liver disease.

Ancient volcanic eruptions caused global mass extinction
A previously unknown giant volcanic eruption that led to global mass extinction 260 million years ago has been uncovered by scientists at the University of Leeds.

Video can help patients make end-of-life decisions
Viewing a video showing a patient with advanced dementia may help elderly patients plan for end-of-life care, according to a study led by Massachusetts General Hospital researchers.

Saved by junk DNA
VIB researchers linked to K.U.Leuven and Harvard University show that stretches of DNA previously believed to be useless

Daily alcohol intake can lead to binge drinking
Sipping wine, beer or spirits three to four times per week increases the risk of binge drinking, particularly among young men, according to a new study published in the journal Addiction.

All the carbon counts
Cutting down forests for agriculture vents carbon dioxide into the air just as industries and fossil fuel burning does.

Why can we talk? 'Humanized' mice speak volumes
Mice carrying a

National child protection commission urgently needed
The lead editorial in this week's Lancet makes an urgent call for a National Child Protection Commission to be set up in the UK.

From 'alarmed' to 'dismissive': The six ways Americans view global warming
Americans fall into six distinct groups regarding their climate change beliefs, attitudes, and behaviors, according to a new report,

UF makes gene therapy advance in severe genetic disorder
A dog born with a deadly disease similar to glycogen storage disease type 1A has survived for nearly two years after receiving gene therapy at the University of Florida.

2 Central High (Philadelphia) grads honored by AIBS
Each year the American Institute of Biological Sciences recognizes eminent individuals or groups for outstanding contributions to the biological sciences.

Aspirin in primary prevention: Reduces heart attacks, but increases bleeds
Use of aspirin by people with no history of relevant disease (primary prevention) reduces non-fatal heart attacks by around a fifth -- but it also increases the risk of internal bleeding by around a third.

Brain's object recognition system activated by touch alone
Portions of the brain that activate when people view pictures of objects compared to scrambled images can also be activated by touch alone, confirms a new report published online on May 28 in Current Biology, a Cell Press publication.

Cancer research partnership between UCSF, MMRF to drive drug development
The University of California, San Francisco, and the Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation have established the Stephen and Nancy Grand Multiple Myeloma Translational Initiative, a research collaboration dedicated to translating basic science discoveries into new candidate drugs for testing in clinical trials.

Suzaku snaps first complete X-ray view of a galaxy cluster
The joint Japan-US Suzaku mission is providing new insight into how assemblages of thousands of galaxies pull themselves together.

Scientists return from expedition to drill beneath frozen Russian lake
A team of scientists from the United States, Germany, Russia and Austria has just returned from a six-month drilling expedition to a frozen lake in Siberia: Lake El'gygytgyn,

UCSB researchers describe breakthrough in the quantum control of light
Researchers at UC Santa Barbara have recently demonstrated a breakthrough in the quantum control of photons, the energy quanta of light.

UK's appalling failure to tackle HIV
There is no credible strategy to diagnose and care for those living with, but unaware of, HIV in Britain today, concludes an editorial in this week's edition of the Lancet.

Resilin springs simplify the control of crustacean limb movements
Animals can simplify the brain control of their limb movements by moving a joint with just one muscle that operates against a spring made of the almost perfect elastic substance called resilin.

A global responsibility to help vulnerable communities adapt
For one international community -- the 165,000 strong Inuit community dispersed across the Arctic coastline in small, remote coastal settlements in Alaska, Canada, Greenland and Siberia -- it is already too late to prevent some of the negative effects of climate change.

MIT, BU engineer cellular circuits that count events
MIT and Boston University engineers have designed cells that can count and

Scripps Florida scientists devise accelerated method to determine infectious prion strains
Current tests to identify specific strains of infectious prions, which cause a range of transmissible diseases (such as mad cow) in animals and humans, can take anywhere from six months to a year to yield results -- a time-lag that may put human populations at risk.

A quicker, cheaper SARS virus detector -- one easily customizable for other targets
USC researchers say they've made a big improvement in a new breed of electronic detectors for viruses and other biological materials -- one that may be a valuable addition to the battle against epidemics.

Adult bone marrow stem cells injected into skeletal muscle can repair heart tissue
University at Buffalo researchers have demonstrated for the first time that injecting adult bone marrow stem cells into skeletal muscle can repair cardiac tissue, reversing heart failure.

New guidelines to fight obesity in pregnancy issued
The Institute of Medicine issued new guidelines for the amount of weight a woman should gain during pregnancy.

How oxidative stress may help prolong life
Oxidative stress has been linked to aging, cancer and other diseases in humans.

Flipping the brain's addiction switch without drugs
Researchers investigating how the brain becomes drug dependent have now implicated a naturally occurring protein, a dose of which allowed them to get rats hooked with no drugs at all.

Teenage boy hospitalized by stimulant chewing gum
The dangers of stimulant chewing gums containing caffeine are highlighted in a case report in this week's edition of the Lancet, which describes how a teenage boy was hospitalized by excessive consumption.

Report updates guidelines on how much weight women should gain during pregnancy
A growing amount of scientific evidence indicates that how much weight women gain during pregnancy and their starting weight at conception can affect their health and that of their babies, says a new report from the Institute of Medicine and the National Research Council.

FDA ignores critical information on home HIV tests
The FDA is ignoring critical information in deciding whether to approve an over-the-counter, rapid HIV test for home use, according to a recent article in the journal Medical Decision Making which is published by SAGE.

Compliance and cost: Bitter pills to swallow in the age of oral chemotherapy
Though the growing shift toward oral chemotherapy agents offers cancer patients greater freedom and independence during their treatment, physicians say use of the new medications also poses more chances for patients to skip doses, miss prescription refills, and take their drugs in a dangerous way.

A research work will be the reference to characterize the climatic impact of desert dust
A research work of the University of Granada, Spain, in the Andalusian Center for Environmental Studies, has studied with an advanced technique the role of the atmospheric aerosol to produce global warming or cooling.

Partner status influences women's interest in men
Indiana University neuroscientist Heather Rupp found that a woman's partner status influenced her interest in men.

Anemia associated with greater risk of death in heart disease patients
A new study appearing in Congestive Heart Failure has found that the presence of anemia in patients with chronic heart failure is associated with a significantly increased risk of death.

New treatment option for patients with chronic hepatitis C
A new combination therapy of daily consensus interferon and ribavirin is effective for some people with chronic hepatitis C who do not respond to standard therapy.

Hitting cancer where it hurts
Two studies in the May 29 issue of Cell, a Cell Press publication, have taken advantage of new technological advances to search for and find previously unknown weaknesses in a hard to treat form of cancer.

Researchers find 'surprising link' leads toward a new antibiotic
Researchers build a method of looking for molecules that will disturb the balance between them offering a completely different way of looking for a new antibiotic that would be active against the cell wall.

UCSF discovers new glucose-regulating protein linked with diabetes
Researchers at the University of California, San Francisco, and collaborators at Harvard Medical School have linked a specialized protein in human muscles to the process that clears glucose out of the bloodstream, shedding light on what goes wrong in type 2 diabetes on a cellular level.

Cancer cells need normal, nonmutated genes to survive
Cancer cells rely on normal, healthy genes as much as they rely on mutated genes.

Music may improve feeding, reduce pain in premature babies: U of A study
As long as there have been babies, adults have crooned lullabies to soothe them.

Studies shed light on collapse of coral reefs
An explosion of knowledge has been made in the last few years about the basic biology of corals, researchers say in a new report, helping to explain why coral reefs around the world are collapsing and what it will take for them to survive a gauntlet of climate change and ocean acidification.

LSUHSC dental researcher funded to develop better dental materials
Xiaoming, Xu, Ph.D., associate professor and director of biomaterials Research at LSU Health Sciences Center New Orleans School of Dentistry, has been awarded a grant in the amount of $1.77 million over four years by the National Institutes of Health to develop new antibacterial, fluoride-releasing, and bioactive dental materials including dental composites, bonding agents and sealants. 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