Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

June 24, 2009
Tummy troubles -- gastrin key in bacterial-induced stomach cancer
Current research suggests that levels of gastrin play a key role in the development of Helicobacter-induced stomach cancer.

On malaria struggle, baboons and humans have similar stories to tell
Evolutionarily speaking, baboons may be our more distant cousins among primates.

Wildlife faces cancer threat
While cancer touches the lives of many humans, it is also a major threat to wild animal populations as well, according to a recent study by the Wildlife Conservation Society.

Simple measures may prevent transmission of stomach ulcer bacteria
The stomach ulcer bacterium Helicobacter pylori is not transmitted through drinking water as previously thought, but rather through vomit and possibly feces.

How mitochondria get their membranes bent
Underneath their smooth surface mitochondria harbor an elaborately folded inner membrane.

Bering Sea flights prove viability of university's unmanned aircraft
Researchers can chalk up another accomplishment for the University of Alaska's Unmanned Aircraft Program.

Graphical cockpit pilots way to higher security for telecommunications services
The EUREKA CELTIC telecommunications Cluster BUGYO project defined a framework to measure, evaluate and maintain security in open telecommunications service infrastructures.

Pediatric acute lymphoblastic leukemia is curable without preventive cranial radiation
Childhood acute lymphoblastic leukemia can be successfully treated using a carefully personalized chemotherapy regimen without cranial radiation, investigators at St.

New mechanism for amyloid beta protein's toxic impact on the Alzheimer's brain
Scientists have uncovered a novel mechanism linking soluble amyloid b protein with the synaptic injury and memory loss associated with Alzheimer's disease (AD).

Nicotine dependence remains prevalent despite recent declines in cigarette use
Despite recent declines in cigarette use in the US, nicotine dependence has remained steady among adults and has actually increased among some groups.

Evolution of a contraceptive for sea lamprey
In addition to providing fundamental insights into the early evolution of the estrogen receptor, research by a team at the University of California -- San Diego School of Medicine may lead to a contraceptive for female lampreys -- a jawless fish considered an invasive pest species in the Great Lakes region of the United States.

International collaboration by scientists culminates in novel ion channels database
An important resource consolidating understanding of the roles played by ion channels in drug action is now available for scientists and students.

Climbing the ladder to longevity: Critical enzyme pair identified
Experiment after experiment confirms that a diet on the brink of starvation expands lifespan in mice and many other species.

Anatomy of the backbone of the Americas
The first two chapters of this new Special Paper from the Geological Society of America summarize the overall anatomy and evolution of North and South American segments of the orogenic system known as

AUA Foundation announces 2009 Research Scholar Program award winners
The American Urological Association Foundation announced the award winners for the 2009 Research Scholar Program.

University of Oklahoma researchers discover giant Rydberg atom molecules
A group of University of Oklahoma researchers led by Dr.

UCSF commentators call for health reform to revitalize primary care
Researchers at the University of California, San Francisco Center for Excellence in Primary Care, as lead authors on commentaries in two of the nation's leading medical journals this week, call for a national effort to revive primary care as part of health-care reform legislation.

Anti-inflammatory drugs may defeat a treatment-resistant type of cancer
Effective drugs for treating a chemotherapy-resistant form of lymphoma might already be on the market according to a study that has pieced together a chemical pathway involved in the disease.

Programming tools facilitate use of video game processors for defense needs
Researchers in the Georgia Tech Research Institute and the Georgia Tech School of Electrical and Computer Engineering are developing programming tools to enable engineers in the defense industry to utilize the processing power of GPUs without having to learn the complicated programming language required to use them directly.

Streaming sand grains help define essence of a liquid
A graduate student in physics at the University of Chicago has devised a special apparatus for an $80,000 high-speed camera to image the rapidly changing behavior of streaming grains, much as a skydiver might photograph a fellow jumper in free fall, with astonishing results.

Scripps research scientists observe human neurodegenerative disorder in fruit flies
A team of scientists from the Scripps Research Institute, Katholeike Universiteit Leuven and the University of Antwerp, Belgium, among other institutions, has created a genetically modified fruit fly that mimics key features of Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease, a common neurodegenerative disorder that strikes about one out of every 2,500 people in the United States.

Study pinpoints novel cancer gene and biomarker
Dana-Farber Cancer Institute scientists' discovery of a cancer-causing gene -- the first in its family to be linked to cancer -- demonstrates how the panoramic view of genomics and the close-up perspective of molecular biology are needed to determine which genes are involved in cancer and which are mere bystanders.

Mouse model provides clues to human language development
Scientists of the German Mouse Clinic at Helmholtz Zentrum Muenchen have made a major contribution to understanding human language development.

Queen's physicists receive $10.5M to determine the building blocks of our universe
Queen's University physicists Mark Boulay and Mark Chen have received over $10.5 million from the Canada Foundation for Innovation toward their underground research projects.

New approach to treating heart attacks reduces risk of life-threatening complications
Transferring heart attack patients to specialized hospitals to undergo angioplasty within six hours after receiving clot-busting drugs reduces the risk of life-threatening complications including repeat heart attacks, according to a new study from St.

Toray to establish water treatment R&D center at NTU in Singapore
Today, Toray Industries Inc., a multinational corporation headquartered in Japan and the world's largest producer of carbon fiber, announced the establishment of Toray Water Technology Laboratory in Singapore to conduct research and development of water treatment technologies.

Imaging the hypnotized brain: Neural mechanisms of suggested paralysis
Although there is no doubt that hypnosis can impact the mind and behavior, the underlying brain mechanisms are not well understood.

Human term placenta a new abundant source of hematopoietic cells
Investigators at Children's Hospital Oakland Research Institute found a way to obtain large numbers of hematopoietic stem cell from human term placenta.

New data show jump in science and engineering graduate study
New data show that enrollment in US science and engineering graduate programs in 2007 grew 3.3 percent over comparable data for 2006 -- the highest year-over-year increase since 2002 and nearly double the 1.7 percent increase seen in 2006.

Jennifer Dodson, M.D., named 2009 AUA Foundation/NIDDK/NCI Surgeon-Scientist Award winner
The American Urological Association Foundation announced that Jennifer Dodson, M.D., of Johns Hopkins Medicine is the 2009 recipient of the AUA Foundation/NIDDK/NCI Surgeon-Scientist Award, offered by the AUA Foundation, the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, and the National Cancer Institute.

Study on keeping nuclear bombs from US ports shows misplaced fear over cargo scanning cost
A two-tiered scanning-protocol for inspecting all containers at international ports could be the most affordable approach to ensuring containers moving through the global transportation system are not carrying nuclear bombs, according to a paper being presented at a services special interest group meeting of the Institute for Operations Research and the Management Sciences.

Mayo Clinic Center for Innovation collaborative symposium on health-care experience and delivery
The Mayo Clinic Center for Innovation will host Transform, a collaborative symposium on innovations in health-care experience and delivery, Sept.

Tips from the American Journal of Pathology
The following highlights summarize research articles that are published in the current issue of the American Journal of Pathology.

Salty ocean in the depths of Enceladus
A new discovery could have implications for the search for extraterrestrial life.

Irritability should be considered when diagnosing bipolar disorder in children
Diagnosing children with bipolar disorder is challenging and controversial. Some children with bipolar disorder are diagnosed based on irritable mood alone.

Genetic finding could lead to targeted therapy for neuroblastoma
Researchers have identified a genetic glitch that could spur development of neuroblastoma, a deadly form of childhood cancer.

Trees and farms working together: Agroforestry comes of age
A new edition of

Jets on Saturn's moon Enceladus not geysers from underground ocean, says study
Water vapor jets that spew from the surface of Saturn's icy moon Enceladus are not really geysers from an underground ocean as initially envisioned by planetary scientists, according to a study led by the University of Colorado at Boulder.

Goal of good quality medicines advanced by new USP agreement with 9 ASEAN countries
Furthering its mission to improve the quality of medicines worldwide, the US Pharmacopeial Convention has signed a cooperative agreement with nine countries belonging to the Association of Southeast Asian Nations.

Artificial noise saves energy
Against the background of climate change, how can xDSL systems function more energy-efficiently and cost-effectively?

New detectors for nuclear, radiological material in cargo should not be acquired until testing deficiencies fixed, cost-benefit analysis completed
A thorough cost-benefit analysis that includes an assessment of meaningful alternatives is needed to reveal the potential security advantages of deploying new detector systems to screen cargo for nuclear and radiological materials at US ports and border crossings.

Lasers can lengthen quantum bit memory by 1,000 times
Physicists have found a way to drastically prolong the shelf life of quantum bits, the 0s and 1s of quantum computers.

World-renowned nanotechnology expert proves there is big potential in the smallest of matter
As director of Northwestern University's International Institute for Nanotechnology, the impact of Dr.

Showcasing the secrets of Caistor Roman town
In December 2007 a team of experts, led by the University of Nottingham, unveiled an extraordinary set of high-resolution images that gave an insight into the plan of the Roman town of Venta Icenorum at Caistor St.

Employee involvement programs key to workplace diversity
A new study by a University of Arizona professor shows employee involvement programs that executives adopt to increase efficiency also end up improving their record on diversity.

University of Miami receives grant to improve maternal and infant health in Haiti
The University of Miami School of Nursing and Health Studies received a $98,000 grant from the Pan American Health and Education Foundation, for an initiative designed to address issues of maternal and infant health in Haiti.

Study shows US seniors 'smarter' than English seniors
The first international comparison of cognitive function in nationally representative samples of older adults in the US and England has revealed that US seniors performed significantly better that their English counterparts.

Measuring intellectual disability
Researchers from the University of California -- Davis have developed a specific and quantitative means of measuring levels of the fragile X mental retardation 1 protein, which is mutated in fragile X syndrome.

CSHL scientists harness logic of 'Sudoku' math puzzle to vastly enhance genome-sequencing capability
Combining a 2,000-year-old Chinese math theorem with concepts from cryptology, scientists from Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory have devised

Pushmi-pullyu of B-cell development discovered
James Hagman, Ph.D., professor of immunology at National Jewish Health and his colleagues have identified two

US seniors 'smarter' than their English peers -- U-M study
US seniors performed significantly better than their counterparts in England on standard tests of memory and cognitive function, according to a new study.

2 Springer authors receive NWO/Spinoza Prize in the Netherlands
The Netherlands Organization for Scientific Research has announced the winners of the NWO/Spinoza Prize for 2009.

Study finds people residing in poor communities not benefiting from recent drop in colorectal cancer
A new study suggests that a drop in colorectal cancer incidence seen nationwide has not occurred among people living in poorer communities, and suggests that barriers to health care may be to blame.

New drug combination better treatment than current therapies for patients with sleeping sickness
Nifurtimox in combination with eflornithine is safe, effective and more affordable than current treatments for sleeping sickness, and should be implemented as a matter of priority by control programs across sub-Saharan Africa, according to an article in this week's issue of the Lancet.

Social class, gender and ethnic group determine adolescents' sexual-affective education
An investigation carried out at the department of Sociology of the University of Granada warns that it is necessary to intervene in this education in order to promote sexual and gender equality and prevent gender violence from adolescents.

New publication shows index insurance has potential to help manage climate risks and reduce poverty
A type of insurance called index insurance offers significant opportunities as a climate-risk management tool in developing countries, according to a new publication launched today during a workshop at the Global Humanitarian Forum in Geneva.

Mini-beamer in a cell phone or PDA
Looking at photos on a cell phone display can be somewhat arduous.

Proteins in gel
Biochips carrying thousands of DNA fragments are widely used for examining genetic material.

First acoustic metamaterial 'superlens' created by University of Illinois researchers
A team of Illinois researchers led by Nicholas X. Fang, left, a professor of mechanical science and engineering, have created the world's first acoustic metamaterial

Study finds DNA barcoding requires caution without closer examination
DNA barcoding is advocated as a vast improvement in our ability to monitor and manage the world's biodiversity.

New piece found in colorectal cancer puzzle
Prostasin, a relatively unknown protease enzyme expressed in most epithelial cells, may play a role in the genesis of colorectal cancer.

Tiny levels of carbon monoxide damage fetal brain
A UCLA study has discovered that chronic exposure during pregnancy to minuscule levels of carbon monoxide damages the cells of the fetal brain, resulting in permanent impairment.

Columbia team finds that gastrin plays significant role in helicobacter-induced stomach cancer
A group led by Columbia University Medical Center's Timothy Wang, M.D., has studied the role of Helicobacter infection in the development of stomach cancer, and found that the hormone gastrin, which stimulates secretion of gastric acid, plays a key role in the development of Helicobacter-induced stomach cancer, may have distinct effects on carcinogenesis in different parts of the stomach.

NYU Langone Medical Center awarded NIH grants totaling $1,560,000
Two NYU Langone Medical Center researchers have received $1,560,000 in grant support for their first year of studies focused on microbiome and psoriasis and on microbiome and esophageal cancer from the National Institutes of Health.

Smoking more than 5 cigarettes a day provokes migraine attacks
Tobacco acts as a precipitating factor for headaches, specifically migraines.

Iowa State University researcher looks at the future of agriculture
Wallace Huffman, professor in agricultural economics and Charles F. Curtiss Distinguished Professor in Agriculture and Life Sciences at Iowa State University, presented research to the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development in Paris last month, and is very optimistic about the future.

Mantle Cell Lymphoma Consortium Scientific Workshop
A research report, from the Sixth Annual Mantle Cell Lymphoma Consortium Scientific Workshop, detailing each oral and poster presentation as well as the roundtable discussions is now available.

NTU and Sembcorp to jointly explore novel waste water treatment technology
Nanyang Technological University's Nanyang Environment and Water Research Institute and Sembcorp Industries signed an agreement today to jointly explore the application of a new system for the treatment of complex industrial wastewater.

What is different in reflux esophagitis between African-Americans and non-Hispanic whites?
There is minimal data evaluating the prevalence of GERD complications in any United States general population, other than non-Hispanic whites.

Can't compete on dung? Try mating on apple pomace
In the mating world of yellow dung flies, large, males almost always get the girl.

'Canadian excellence' strengthened by extensive adoption of open access
BioMed Central and Wilfrid Laurier University today announce the launch of Laurier IR, an institutional repository that provides a visible point of open access archiving of intellectual output for all members of the university community.

AUA Foundation names the 2009 Astellas Rising Stars in Urology award winners
The American Urological Association Foundation has announced its Astellas Rising Stars in Urology for 2009.

New instrument has potential to detect water deep underground on Mars
With the whoosh of compressed gas and the whir of unspooling wire, a team of Boulder scientists and engineers tested a new instrument prototype that might be used to detect groundwater deep inside Mars.

Large-scale analysis finds bariatric surgery relatively safe
Advances in weight-loss surgery have made it as safe as any routine surgical procedure, according to a Duke University Medical Center researcher who reviewed data from nearly 60,000 patients, and found it resulted in low complication and mortality rates.

American elderly thrash English at 'brain training' test
Americans over 65 scored significantly better than their English counterparts at a memory and awareness test.

New book explores computational modelling
The American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics is pleased to announce that the new book

Gene predicts how brain responds to fatigue, human study shows
New imaging research in the June 24 issue of the Journal of Neuroscience helps explain why sleep deprivation affects some people more than others.

Neurological differences support dyslexia subtypes
Parts of the right hemisphere of the brains of people with dyslexia have been shown to differ from those of normal readers.

UAB researchers draft 3-D protein map to aid stroke, cancer research
In a new study, researchers have generated a computer map of the protein acid-sensing ion channel-1, or ASIC-1, an important neurological pathway.

Older kidney transplant patients should more often consider live donors
Almost half of kidney transplant candidates older than 60 die before getting a deceased-donor organ.

Researcher finds Girl Scout meetings provide an opportunity to increase girls' physical activity
A kinesiology researcher trained Girl Scout leaders to instruct exercise sessions and promote healthful eating among their troops.

Variation in the same gene affects rate of parasite infection in both humans and baboons
Researchers at the Duke University Institute for Genome Sciences & Policy have found that variation in the same gene in humans and baboons produces the same kind of disease resistance.

Space shuttle science shows how 1908 Tunguska explosion was caused by a comet
The mysterious 1908 Tunguska explosion that leveled 830 square miles of Siberian forest was almost certainly caused by a comet entering the Earth's atmosphere, says new Cornell University research.

A breath mint made from ... coffee?
Tel Aviv University researchers brew a cup to fight bad breath.

West Coast needs more research on fisheries, marine science, climate change
The West Coast critically needs more research about fisheries, ocean health, coastal hazards and climate change -- among other topics -- to support and protect the region's annual $32 billion ocean-related economy, according to a new report prepared by the region's four Sea Grant programs.

Dry autumns and winters may lead to fewer tornadoes in the spring, says UGA researcher
Global warming will likely mean more unpredictable weather, scientists say, and a new study by researchers at the University of Georgia pins down, possibly for the first time, how drought conditions in an area's fall and winter may effect tornado activity the following spring.

Stream of sand behaves like water
University of Chicago researchers recently showed that dry granular materials such as sands, seeds and grains have properties similar to liquid, forming water-like droplets when poured from a given source.

Cheaper solar technology, flexible lighting and other energy breakthroughs at MIT meeting
Experts from academia and industry are gathering this week for the Optics and Photonics for Advanced Energy Technology meeting at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology to discuss the future of solar energy, cutting-edge developments in solid-state lighting, and the application of new sensors and technologies used to generate and store energy.

Queen's engineers receive $6.9M to build nuclear materials testing facility
Rick Holt and Mark Daymond, professors of mechanical and materials engineering at Queen's University, recently received $6.9 million to support their work testing nuclear materials in a simulated reactor environment.
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