Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

August 03, 2009
Preschool depression may continue into childhood
Depression among preschoolers appears to be a continuous, chronic condition rather than a transient developmental stage, according to a report in the August issue of Archives of General Psychiatry, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

Synthetic biology -- opportunities and risks
The new research field of synthetic biology will, in the medium term, open up a great deal of potential for combining novel genetic methods with engineering principles.

Obesity is a poor gauge for detecting high cholesterol levels in children
With the epidemic of childhood obesity in the United States, there is concern that overweight and obese children need to be screened for chronic medical conditions, including high cholesterol levels.

The protein CCKR2: A potential drug target for colorectal cancer?
Colorectal cancer is the second most common cause of death from cancer in the United States.

IgM in urine acts as prognostic indicator in diabetes
A marker of the likely course of diabetic nephropathy has been found.

School-based program helps prevent dating violence among teens, especially boys
A school-based program that integrates information about healthy relationships into the existing ninth-grade curriculum appears to reduce adolescent dating violence and increase condom use two and a half years later, according to a report in the August issue of Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

Twin study examines associations between depression and coronary artery disease
Major depression and coronary artery disease are only modestly related throughout an individual's lifetime, but studying how the two interact over time and in twin pairs paints a more complex picture of the associations between the conditions, according to a report in the August issue of Archives of General Psychiatry, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

National Science Board to meet Aug. 5-6 in Arlington, Va.
On Aug. 5-6, the National Science Board will meet to address science and engineering policy issues and oversight of the National Science Foundation.

K-State researchers say after-school programs should promote activity, healthy nutrition
K-State researchers have found that quality after-school programs are an important contributor to children's physical activity.

Protecting cells from their neighbors
Scientists at the Institute for Research in Biomedicine, headed by Jordi Casanova have identified the mechanism that protects somatic cells against an specific action of germ cells during embryonic development.

Scientists open doors to diagnosis of emphysema
Chronic inflammatory lung diseases are a major global health problem with smoking accounting for 90 percent of the risk for developing them.

NYU physicists make room for oddballs
Here's a question. How many gumballs of different sizes can fit in one of those containers at the mall so as to reward a well-spent quarter?

Heavy drinkers face significantly increased cancer risk
Heavy drinkers of beer and spirits face a much higher risk of developing cancer than the population at large, says a group of Montreal epidemiologists and cancer researchers.

Researchers identify new method to selectively kill metastatic melanoma cells
An international team of researchers has identified a new method for selectively killing metastatic melanoma cells, which may lead to new areas for drug development in melanoma -- a cancer that is highly resistant to current treatment strategies.

Gasoline-diesel 'cocktail': A potent recipe for cleaner, more efficient engines
Diesel and gasoline fuel sources both bring unique assets and liabilities to powering internal combustion engines.

Cannibalistic cells may help prevent infections, UT Southwestern researchers report
Infectious-disease specialists at UT Southwestern Medical Center have demonstrated that a cannibalistic process in cells plays a key role in limiting Salmonella infection.

Violence against mothers in bangladesh associated with health problems in young children
Almost half of Bangladeshi women with young children experience violence from their husbands, and their children appear to have a higher risk of recent respiratory infections and diarrhea, according to a report in the August issue of Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

Social Psychological and Personality Science
SAGE, the world's fifth largest publisher of academic journals, is pleased to announce the January 2010 launch of a new quarterly journal, Social Psychological and Personality Science.

New insight into human ciliopathy
In the Sept. 1 issue of G&D, Dr. Karen Oegema and colleagues identify the molecular basis of the lethal developmental disorder, hydrolethalus syndrome, and reveal that hydrolethalus syndrome actually belongs to the emerging class of human ciliopathy diseases.

Antidepressant use increasing in the United States
A marked and broad expansion in antidepressant treatment occurred among Americans older than 6 years between 1996 and 2005, although treatment rates remain low among racial and ethnic minorities, according to a report in the August issue of Archives of General Psychiatry, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

New national study finds increase in P.E. class-related injuries
A recent study conducted by the Center for Injury Research and Policy of the Research Institute at Nationwide Children's Hospital, found that the number of P.E.-related injuries to elementary, middle and high school students in the United States increased 150 percent between 1997 and 2007.

Chemists explain the switchboards in our cells
Our cells are controlled by billions of molecular

Viral mimic induces melanoma cells to digest themselves
Recent research has uncovered an unexpected vulnerability in deadly melanoma cells that, when exploited, can cause the cancer cells to turn against themselves.

On the path to metallic hydrogen
A recently discovered hydrogen-based compound could be helpful in the search for metallic and superconducting forms of hydrogen.

Researchers effectively treat tumors with use of nanotubes
By injecting man-made, microscopic tubes into tumors and heating them with a quick, 30-second zap of a laser, scientists have discovered a way to effectively kill kidney tumors in nearly 80 percent of mice.

Exercise is healthy for mom and child during pregnancy
Physicians should recommend low to moderate levels of exercise to their pregnant patients, even if they have not exercised prior to pregnancy, states a report published in the August 2009 issue of the Journal of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons.

Regular yoga practice is associated with mindful eating
Regular yoga practice is associated with mindful eating, and people who eat mindfully are less likely to be obese, according to a study led by researchers at Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center.

Office of Naval Research nationally recognized as a 'Best Diversity Company'
Diversity/Careers in Engineering & Information Technology magazine readers and Web site visitors recognized ONR as a Best Diversity Company for its support of minorities and women, attention to work/life balance and commitment to supplier diversity.

Stanford scientists discover bladder cancer stem cell
Researchers at Stanford's School of Medicine have identified the first human bladder cancer stem cell and revealed how it works to escape the body's natural defenses.

Big cattle -- the genes that determine carcass weight
An area of chromosome 6 that affects cattle carcass weight has been identified using two different Japanese species.

Switch to digital mammography leads to increased cancer detection rates
The use of digital mammography equipment alone is responsible for an increased number of breast cancers detected at a community-based mammography facility, according to a study performed at San Luis Diagnostic Center in San Luis Obispo, Calif.

Maternal immunity not all good for a fetus
New research has determined an immune mechanism responsible for graft failure in a mouse model of in utero blood cell transplantation, a procedure that could be used to treat human congenital blood disorders.

Research shows temptation more powerful than individuals realize
New research demonstrates that individuals believe they have more restraint than they actually possess -- ultimately leading to poor decision-making.

Millions of US children low in vitamin D
Seven out of 10 US children have low levels of vitamin D, raising their risk of bone and heart disease, according to a study of over 6,000 children by researchers at Albert Einstein College of Medicine of Yeshiva University.

Multimodality treatments effective in halting lung cancer progression
The world's top lung cancer specialists, medical professionals and researchers are convening this week in San Francisco, Calif., for the 13th World Conference on Lung Cancer, organized by the International Association for the Study of Lung Cancer.

New study examines how cost affects decisions to marry
A new paper by University of Notre Dame economist Kasey S.

Computers unlock more secrets of the mysterious Indus Valley script
A statistical analysis reveals distinct patterns in ancient Indus symbols, and creates a hypothetical model for the unknown language.

Use of a restraining device in the subacute phase after a stroke no better than rehabilitation alone
Restraining the use of some patients' unaffected upper limb during the subacute phase following stroke does not appear to generate greater improvements in motor impairment and capacity than standard rehabilitation alone, according to a pilot study published in the June issue of Physical Therapy, the scientific journal of the American Physical Therapy Association.

'SIRT'ain security: the protein SIRT3 protects the heart
Sirtuin proteins promote longevity in many organisms. Increased expression of one sirtuin protein, SIRT3, has been linked to increased human lifespan.

Induction of labor after 37 weeks recommended for women with gestational hypertension/mild pre-eclampsia (Hypitat study)
Pregnant women with mild hypertensive disorders such as high blood pressure/mild pre-eclampsia should have their labor induced once they complete 37 weeks of their pregnancy.

Kefir, although rich in probiotics, didn't prevent diarrhea in children using antibiotics
Kefir, one of the world's oldest

Ripe pineapple and delicious pork
Customers want fresh food, which is neither unripe nor spoiled.

Bath professor recognized by Royal Society research award
A University of Bath professor has been acknowledged in a prestigious award by the Royal Society, independent scientific academy of the UK and the Commonwealth.

Story tips from the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory -- Aug. 2009
One of ORNL's international partners, Switzerland's Paul Scherrer Institute, is delivering a massive 16-Tesla magnet at the DOE's SNS.

Fossil plants bring Wilf distinguished speaker honor
Peter Wilf, associate professor of geosciences, has been named distinguished speaker for fall 2009 through fall 2012 by the Paleontological Society.

New tool may help with early detection of deadly pancreatic cancer
A new diagnostic tool developed by Van Andel Research Institute scientists has shown promising results when used with patients of pancreatic cancer, one of the deadliest forms of cancer due to the difficulty of diagnosing it in its early stages.

Walk, don't drive! Community promotion of physical activity has 2-fold benefit
Reducing short-distance car trips has many benefits -- it decreases car accidents, has positive benefits for the environment, and increases physical health and activity, says communication professor Edward Maibach of George Mason University.

Groundbreaking study shows exercise benefits leukemia patients
A new study from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill suggests that exercise may be an effective way to combat the debilitating fatigue that leukemia patients experience.

Urban water ecology at the ESA annual meeting
Increasingly, human urban development overlaps with habitat for wild animals and plants, creating environments that degrade natural landscapes.

Higher carbon dioxide may give pines competitive edge
Pine trees grown for 12 years in air one-and-a-half times richer in carbon dioxide than today's levels produced twice as many seeds of at least as good a quality as those growing under normal conditions, a Duke University-led research team reported Monday (Aug.

Insurance, medical provider do not assure asthma control
It is widely believed that providing better access to medical care can improve the health of Americans.

Neck surgery for cervical spine disorders found to alleviate associated headaches
A new study published in the August 2009 issue of the Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery finds that two years after anterior cervical neck operations, patients who have arthroplasty or arthodesis can be expected to have significant improvement in their headache symptoms.

Sick fish may get sicker
Entire populations of North American fish already are being affected by several emerging diseases, a problem that threatens to increase in the future with climate change and other stresses on aquatic ecosystems, according to a noted US Geological Survey researcher giving an invited talk on this subject today at the Wildlife Disease Association conference in Blaine, Wash.

La Jolla Institute discovers novel tumor suppressor
La Jolla Institute for Allergy & Immunology researchers studying an enzyme believed to play a role in allergy onset, instead have discovered its previously unknown role as a tumor suppressor that may be important in myeloproliferative diseases and some types of lymphoma and leukemia.

Anti-growth factor drugs raise hope and concern for treatment of children's eye diseases
A new class of antibody drugs may provide a powerful new tool for the treatment of eye diseases in children, but specialists need to be alert for the possibility of serious side effects, according to an editorial in the August Journal of AAPOS (American Association for Pediatric Ophthalmology and Strabismus), published by Elsevier.

Rapid heating prepares energy-saving zeolite for greater role in industrial separations
Microscopic particles of zeolite have uniform nanopores and are used in a variety of applications, including water purification, dewatering of ethanol and creation of pure gas streams.

Tuberculosis drugs under development expected to have major impact on the disease
The latest drug regimens, vaccines and diagnostic tools under development to combat tuberculosis could have a potentially large impact on the disease once they become available, according to research findings published in the Aug.

Pain relief only 1 motive for opioid use among high school seniors
Taking opioid drugs without a prescription appears relatively common among high school seniors, according to a report in the August issue of Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

DNA computation gets logical at the Weizmann Institute of Science
The world's smallest computers, made of DNA and other biological molecules, just got more

University of Minnesota researchers discover breakthrough method for chemical separations
Researchers, led by chemical engineering and materials science professor Michael Tsapatsis in the University of Minnesota's Institute of Technology, have developed a more energy-efficient method of chemical separations that could revolutionize processes in the petrochemical and biofuels industries.

Scientists report original source of malaria
Researchers have identified what they believe is the original source of malignant malaria: a parasite found in chimpanzees in equatorial Africa.

Restoring a natural root signal helps to fight a major corn pest
A collaboration between researchers at the MPI for Chemical Ecology and the University of Neuchatel, together with contributions from colleagues in Munich and the US, has produced another first: the successful manipulation of a crop plant to emit a signal that attracts beneficial organisms.

Gene signature for cancer stem cells may provide drug targets
A subset of tumor cells that remain after a woman with breast cancer undergoes treatment with either anti-cancer or anti-hormone therapy shows a

Epilepsy halted in mice
Scientists in Leeds have prevented epilepsy caused by a gene defect from being passed on to mice offspring -- an achievement which may herald new therapies for people suffering from the condition.

Springer author receives prestigious aging research award
The Gerontological Society of America has decided to award the M.

TV and computer screen time may be associated with high blood pressure in young children
Sedentary behaviors such as TV viewing and

University of Houston's information security program recognized by NSA, DHS
The University of Houston has been named a national center of academic excellence in information assurance education by the National Security Agency and the US Department of Homeland Security.

Ouchless wildlife plague vaccine, shipwrecks and coral reefs and more
Note to reporters and editors: The 58th annual meeting of the Wildlife Disease Association is Aug.

Parents fear errors during children's hospitalization
Nearly two-thirds of parents reported they felt the need to watch over their child's care to ensure that medical errors are not made during their hospital stay, according to a University of Michigan study.

Unlocking the key to human fertility
Scientists at Leeds and Bradford have discovered a unique

Researchers identify new function for protein missing in Duchenne muscular dystrophy
Researchers at the University of Minnesota and National Institutes of Health have identified a new function for the protein missing in people with the most common and ultimately lethal form of childhood muscular dystrophy.

JCI online early table of contents: Aug. 3, 2009
This release contains summaries, links to PDFs, and contact information for the following newsworthy papers to be published online, Aug.

$1.5 million grant to help MSU educate more Hispanics in neurosciences
A $1.5 million federal grant will help Michigan State University increase the number of Hispanic doctoral students trained in the neurosciences.

A 'super sensor' for cancer and CSIs
Tel Aviv University's Prof. Rishpon has coupled biological materials with an electrode-based device to create a customizable sensor that can detect pathogens and biomarkers.

Detection of 'prolonged grief disorder' may help bereaved individuals
Identification of criteria for the detection of prolonged grief disorder appear able to identify bereaved persons at heightened risk for enduring distress and dysfunction, says a new study in this week's open access journal PLoS Medicine.

RWJF Health Policy Fellows have unique opportunity to influence health reform
Ten exceptional health professionals have been selected as Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Health Policy Fellows for 2009-10.

Daily temperature shifts may alter malaria patterns
Daytime temperature fluctuations greatly alter the incubation period of malaria parasites in mosquitoes, and alter transmission rates of the disease.

Dysport proves safe, effective anti-wrinkle treatment, UT Southwestern plastic surgeons find
The new anti-wrinkle facial filler Dysport, which could be used as an alternative to Botox, noticeably reduced frown lines between the eyes, according to users and independent reviewers in a study involving plastic surgeons at UT Southwestern Medical Center.

Nanoparticles cross blood-brain barrier to enable 'brain tumor painting'
Fluorescent nanoparticles are able to illuminate brain tumors in mice.

Analysis: 2007 legal opinion is a threat to imperiled species
If the federal government implements a 2007 legal interpretation of the Endangered Species Act, the likely result will be a reduction in the number of species listed for protection, scientists say.

Self-healing surfaces
The engineers' dream of self-healing surfaces has taken another step towards becoming reality -- researchers have produced a electroplated layer that contains tiny nanometer-sized capsules.

NASA's CloudSat captures a sideways look at fading Lana
NASA satellites do some really cool things, like take a sideways look at a slice of a tropical depression.

Heart disease patients with previous blockages more likely to die
Compared to patients without prior heart disease, those who previously had blocked arteries were more likely to die in the hospital.

Is there long-term brain damage after bypass surgery? More evidence puts the blame on heart disease
Brain scientists and cardiac surgeons at Johns Hopkins have evidence from 227 heart bypass surgery patients that long-term memory losses and cognitive problems they experience are due to the underlying coronary artery disease itself and not ill after-effects from having used a heart-lung machine.

Thinking crickets -- 'cognitive' processes underlie memory recall in crickets
Activation of two different kinds of neurons is necessary for appetitive and aversive memory recall in crickets.

Stanford research assesses use of Tamiflu, Relenza to prevent flu
Two common anti-influenza drugs -- Relenza and Tamiflu -- appear equally effective at preventing common flu symptoms when given before infection, say researchers from the Stanford University School of Medicine.

Radiation exposure during interventional procedures a concern for some developing countries
Interventional radiology procedures are on the rise in developing countries and there is a significant need for optimization of these procedures to ensure patient safety.

For struggling single moms, 3-generation households are better than 2
The findings of a new study to appear in the November 2009 Journal of Family Issues and now available online indicate children living in single-mother families that also include a grandparent are substantially less likely to be living below or near the poverty line compared to children living in mother-only homes.

PET can help guide treatment decisions for a common pediatric cancer
A new study published in the August issue of the Journal of Nuclear Medicine shows that positron emission tomography is an important tool for depicting the extent of neuroblastoma in some patients, particularly for those in the early stages of the disease.

Project Zero Delay accelerates drug's path to clinical trial
A phase I clinical trial enrolled its first patient only two days after US Food and Drug Administration clearance of the experimental drug for a first-in-human cancer trial, a milestone that normally takes three to six months.

Face your 'ex-factor' after divorce or break-up
Over two-thirds of American families are

LSUHSC's Leigh 1 of only 10 RWJF health policy fellows
Janet Leigh, B.D.S., D.M.D., chair of the Department of Oral Medicine and Radiology at LSU Health Sciences Center New Orleans School of Dentistry, is one of 10 Health Policy Fellows selected by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation for 2009-2010.

New microchip technology performs 1,000 chemical reactions at once
UCLA researchers have developed technology to perform more than a thousand chemical reactions at once on a stamp-size, PC-controlled microchip, which could accelerate the identification of potential drug candidates for treating diseases like cancer.

Study reveals mounting evidence of fish oil's heart health benefits
There is mounting evidence that omega-3 fatty acids from fish or fish oil supplements not only help prevent cardiovascular diseases in healthy individuals, but also reduce the incidence of cardiac events and mortality in patients with existing heart disease.

Friendship influences eating behavior, particularly when friends are overweight
A new study of childhood obesity in the United States has found that some social factors, such as the presence of friends, may put overweight youths at greater risk of overeating.

Why anorexic patients cling to their eating disorder
Anorexic patients drastically reduce food intake and are often not capable of changing their behavior.

'Brain exercises' may delay memory decline in dementia
People who engage in activities that exercise the brain, such as reading, writing, and playing card games, may delay the rapid memory decline that occurs if they later develop dementia, according to a study published in the Aug.

Embargoed news from Annals of Internal Medicine
Below is information about two early release articles on flu pandemic being published online on Aug.

Study shows seed implants a suitable prostate cancer treatment option for men of all ages
Men diagnosed with prostate cancer have a number of treatments to choose from, but it's a daunting task to figure out the right mix of therapies for an individual patient. 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