Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

September 30, 2009
Scientists discover clues to what makes human muscle age
A study led by UC Berkeley researchers has identified critical biochemical pathways linked to the aging of human muscle.

K-State physicist works to understand atomic collisions important to ultracold quantum gasses
A K-State physics professor is studying what happens when atoms collide in groups of three and four.

Less than half of medical students understand health care system
New findings from University of Michigan researchers indicate that less than half of medical students say they are adequately trained to navigate health care system.

A need for leadership in primary care
Community health centers have become the centerpiece of the nation's efforts to provide access to primary care for all and therefore experience a greater need for primary care providers, who already are in short supply.

Taking sharper aim at stomach ulcer bacteria
Scientists are reporting discovery of a much sought after crack in the armor of a common microbe that infects the stomachs of one-sixth of the world's population, causing stomach ulcers and other diseases.

Complications are not best predictor of hospital mortality
The assumption is high mortality hospitals have high complication rates.

Increase in 'academic doping' could spark routine urine tests for exam students
The increasing use of smart drugs or

WCMC-Q hosts expert presentations on flu and H1N1
Weill Cornell Medical College in Qatar hosted a detailed talk about a virus that's causing concern around the world.

NSF CAREER award recipient to study work practices of global engineering professionals
It is Aditya Johri's hope that his research will advance understanding of how engineers work on teams spread across the world using information technology, and lead to insights that can help educators better prepare future engineers.

Delaware State U. receives $5 million NASA grant for optics research
Delaware State University has been awarded a $5 million research grant from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration to establish a NASA-URC Center for Applied Optics for Space Science.

A potential new imaging agent for early diagnosis of most serious skin cancer
Scientists in Australia are reporting development and testing in laboratory animals of a potential new material for diagnosing malignant melanoma, the most serious form of skin cancer.

New way to monitor faults may help predict earthquakes
Scientists at the Carnegie Institution have found a way to monitor the strength of geologic faults deep in the Earth.

Step forward for nanotechnology: Controlled movement of molecules
Scientists in the United Kingdom are reporting an advance toward overcoming one of the key challenges in nanotechnology: Getting molecules to move quickly in a desired direction without help from outside forces.

Denial of service denial
A way to filter out denial of service attacks on computer networks, including cloud computing systems, could significantly improve security on government, commercial, and educational systems.

Penn study asks, protection or peril? Gun possession of questionable value in an assault
In a first-of its-kind study, epidemiologists at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine found that, on average, guns did not protect those who possessed them from being shot in an assault.

Recent, vigorous exercise is associated with reduced breast cancer risk
Post-menopausal women who engage in moderate to vigorous exercise have a reduced risk of breast cancer.

Juvenile bluefin tunas can dive to depths of more than 1,000 meters
A bluefin tuna, tagged by AZTI-Tecnalia in August 2008, 15 miles to the north of Donostia-San Sebastián on recreational trolling vessel was caught a year later by a professional bait boat 88 miles north of Bakio.

Less than 50 percent of men and women with depression see a doctor for treatment
Less than half of men and women in Ontario who may be suffering from depression see a doctor to treat their potentially debilitating condition, according to a new women's health study by researchers at St.

Where surgery was the standard, casting may be the future
New research from the University of Rochester Medical Center may lead doctors to choose to tweak an old technology -- casting -- over using high-tech implantable devices for children with progressive infantile scoliosis.

Academies announce winners of 2009 Communication Awards
The National Academies today announced the recipients of their 2009 Communication Awards.

Paper by K-State management professor wins international honors
An article co-written by Chwen Sheu, professor of management at Kansas State University, has received the Indiana University CIBER Best International Collaboration Paper Award.

Putting the squeeze on sperm DNA
Scientists at the European Molecular Biology Laboratory in Heidelberg and Grenoble, the Institut de Biologie Structurale and the Institut Albert Bonniot, both also in Grenoble, have been studying the secrets of speedy sperm.

Grains and lamb offer new sources of omega-3
CSIRO research on grains and lamb aimed at developing new dietary sources of long-chain omega-3 oils will be presented at the World Congress on Oils and Fats in Sydney this week.

Joint US-Norwegian study provides new insights into marine ecosystems and fisheries production
NOAA and Norwegian researchers recently completed a comparative analysis of marine ecosystems in the North Atlantic and North Pacific to see what factors support fisheries production, leading to new insights that could improve fishery management plans and the ecosystems.

Stripped down: Hubble highlights 2 galaxies that are losing it
A newly released set of images, taken by the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope before the recent Servicing Mission, highlight the ongoing drama in two galaxies in the Virgo Cluster affected by a process known as

Cardiac stem cell trial seeks to treat some heart attack patients
Researchers at UCSF Medical Center have begun enrollment for an early stage clinical trial to evaluate the safety and efficacy of an adult stem cell therapy for patients who have just experienced their first acute myocardial infarction, or heart attack.

UNC awarded Cancer Genome Atlas grant
The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill is one of 12 centers announced today by President Obama as part of an unprecedented large-scale, collaborative effort by the National Cancer Institute and the National Human Genome Research Institute to systematically characterize the genomic changes that occur in cancer.

Treating even mild gestational diabetes reduces birth complications
A National Institutes of Health network study provided the first conclusive evidence that treating pregnant women who have even the mildest form of gestational diabetes can reduce the risk of common birth complications among infants, as well as blood pressure disorders among mothers.

Focusing on manufacturing breakthroughs
Flexible plastic solar cells that can be printed like money, carbon fibers so thin they can be spun into yarns and a raft of new biomedical products to combating illness and injury are just some of the research breakthroughs being developed by the new CSIRO National Research Flagship for Future Manufacturing launched today.

A new chemical method for distinguishing between farmed and wild salmon
Wild salmon and farmed salmon can now be distinguished from each other by a technique that examines the chemistry of their scales.

Geological Society of America announces gold medalists for 2009
Highest honors for achievements in geological sciences have been announced by the Geological Society of America.

Peer pressure builds more latrines than financial assistance
Government subsidies persuade some people to change habits, but social shame works even better, suggests a recent study of efforts to reduce elevated childhood death and disease rates blamed on the microbial pathogens that cause diarrhea in rural India.

Chronic pain treatments work better together, says anesthesiologist
People who suffer from debilitating neuropathic pain may get more relief and sleep better by combining two commonly-prescribed drugs.

Children found to be most at risk from malaria
Insecticide treated mosquito nets reduce the chances of developing life-threatening malaria in Africa, however recent research shows that older children are the least well protected by nets in the community.

Top interventional radiologists, neurointerventionists explore stroke care through CLOTS
The Society of Interventional Radiology presents

First human gets new antibody aimed at rabies virus
MassBiologics of the University of Massachusetts Medical School today announced the beginning of a Phase 1 clinical trial in India, testing the safety and activity of a human monoclonal antibody developed to neutralize the rabies virus.

Keyboards and mice can harbor hospital infections
Although hospital computer equipment can act as a reservoir for pathogenic organisms, including MRSA, researchers writing in the open access journal BMC Infectious Diseases found that bacterial contamination rates from computer equipment were low, possibly as the result of good hand hygiene.

NASA's infrared satellite images reveal Ketsana's deadly western Pacific march
NASA's Aqua satellite flew over Typhoon Ketsana during its lifetime and captured infrared imagery on a daily basis.

Australia's largest clinical trial to test benefits of aspirin
Researchers at Monash University and the United States-based Berman Center for Outcomes & Clinical Research will lead an international clinical trial to test whether taking aspirin contributes to good health in the elderly.

Researchers develop an integrated treatment for veterans with chronic pain and posttraumatic stress
The wars in Iraq and Afghanistan have resulted in a growing number of soldiers evacuated to the United States for comprehensive care for physical and psychological trauma.

Getting plants to rid themselves of pesticide residues
Scientists in China have discovered that a natural plant hormone, applied to crops, can help plants eliminate residues of certain pesticides.

Physician-assisted suicide does not increase severity of depression, grief among family members
Unlike other forms of suicide, physician assisted death does not cause substantial regret, or a sense of rejection among surviving family members.

Places to play, but 'stranger danger' fears keep inner-city kids home: Study
Fear of dangerous strangers in inner-city neighborhoods is keeping kids and teens from using playgrounds and parks to be physically active.

Sexually satisfied women have better general well-being and more vitality
Pre- and post-menopausal women who self-rated themselves as being sexually satisfied had a higher overall psychological well-being score and scores for

Consciousness is the brain's Wi-Fi, resolving competing requests, study suggests
Your fingers start to burn after picking up a hot plate.

Can strep throat cause OCD, Tourette syndrome?
New research shows that streptococcal infection does not appear to cause or trigger Tourette syndrome or obsessive-compulsive disorder.

ORMatE returns to NRL after nearly 2 years in Earth orbit
Optical Reflector Material Experiment returns to NRL's Electronics Science and Technology Division after 18-month mission on-orbit the International Space Station.

Celebs spawn copycat suicides, study confirms
Results of a new study from Queen Mary, University of London, warn against glamorizing celebrity suicides in the media.

Study in Spain and Romania confirms radon as second leading cause of lung cancer
Exposure to radon gas in homes is the second leading cause of lung cancer after smoking, according to a study carried out by researchers from the University of Cantabria and the Babes-Bolyai University in Romania.

RIM and NSERC invest in Queen's expertise
Queen's University expertise in systems and software engineering has attracted a $5 million investment from Research In Motion and the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada.

MU researchers help identify cows that gain more while eating less
University of Missouri researcher Monty Kerley, professor of animal nutrition in the College of Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources, is studying how cows might be able to gain more weight while consuming less, potentially saving farmers up to 40 percent of feed costs.

Planet's nitrogen cycle overturned by 'tiny ammonia eater of the seas'
Tiny organisms known as archaea play a central role in the planet's nitrogen cycle, according to new research.

Research puts a 'Fas' to the cause of programmed cell death
Walter and Eliza Hall Institute researchers have put an end to a 10-year debate over which form of a molecular messenger called Fas ligand is responsible for killing cells during programmed cell death (also called apoptosis).

Celebrate Darwin's bicentennial by exploring how Darwin 'defined' evolutionary biology
For 40 years, Michael Ruse has written extensively on Charles Darwin, the scientific revolution that his work precipitated, and the nature and implications of evolutionary thinking for today.

Racing against the clock to distribute H1N1 flu vaccine
Drug companies are sprinting ahead in a race against the clock to deliver millions of doses of vaccine for the H1N1 influenza virus before cooler weather ushers in the 2009-2010 flu season.

Wiley-Blackwell hosts first virtual conference
Wiley-Blackwell is proud to announce its first virtual scholarly conference, to be held Oct.

Rensselaer researchers to develop and test next-generation radar systems
Researchers at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute have received a grant for $792,000 from the US Air Force to create a new laboratory for developing and testing next-generation radar systems that overcome one of the key limitations of conventional radars.

Treating pregnant women for mild gestational diabetes reduces serious birthing problems
Treating pregnant women for mild gestational diabetes resulted in fewer cesarean sections and other serious birthing problems associated with larger than average babies, according to a study conducted in part at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Researchers use computational models to study fear
University of Missouri researchers have started using computational models of the brain, making it easier to study the brain's connections.

Stimulus money helps ecological research take to the air
NEON Inc.'s Airborne Observation team will receive stimulus money to develop a new imaging spectrometer to study ecosystems from aircraft, a significant advancement for the field of ecological research.

Securing biological select agents and toxins will require developing a culture of trust
The most effective way to prevent the deliberate misuse of biological select agents and toxins -- agents housed in laboratories across the US considered to potentially pose a threat to human health -- is to instill a culture of trust and responsibility in the laboratory, says a new report from the National Research Council.

CSIRO launches its 'Wellbeing Plan for Kids' book
CSIRO will launch its new publication,

Overweight middle-aged women cut chances of enjoying healthy old age
Women who put on weight as they approach middle-age could reduce their chances of enjoying a healthy old age by up to 80 percent, according to research from the University of Warwick.

Despite size, NFL players not more likely to develop heart disease, even after retirement
Former professional football players with large bodies don't appear to have the same risk factors for heart disease as their nonathletic counterparts, UT Southwestern Medical Center researchers have found in studying a group of National Football League alumni.

UAB professor's book promises solution for teaching evolution without conflict
University of Alabama at Birmingham Associate Professor Lee Meadows, Ph.D., is author of a new book,

Amid rising concerns, 600 global biodiversity experts meet in Cape Town, Oct. 13-16
Amid deepening concern that the pace of biodiversity loss is worsening in many places, some 600 biodiversity experts will converge in Cape Town, Oct.

San Andreas affected by 2004 Sumatran quake
US seismologists have found evidence that the massive 2004 earthquake that triggered killer tsunamis throughout the Indian Ocean weakened at least a portion of California's famed San Andreas Fault.

The naked truth about our landscape
Australia has been stripped bare of vegetation to expose the surface that lies beneath.

Teen attitudes toward smoking linked to likelihood of drinking and using drugs
New research by Weill Cornell Medical College researchers looks at the specific ways parents and peers influence teenagers to smoke, drink and use marijuana in combination.

Study explores how life experiences contribute to the biological changes of Alzheimer's
The National Institutes of Health has awarded Rush University Medical Center approximately $5.5 million in grants to study how epigenetic changes -- chemical modifications to genes that result from diet, aging, stress, or environmental exposures -- define and contribute to memory formation and cognitive decline.

Stimulus grant to fund whole-genome sequencing in children with autism
Children's Hospital Boston, with the Broad Institute and Harvard Medical School, has been awarded a Grand Opportunity grant from the National Institute of Mental Health as part of the federal stimulus package, to pursue

Come together, right now ... tropical depression 18W dissipates, Parma intensifies
Two tropical cyclones in the Western Pacific are keeping in tune to the 1969 hit song by the Beatles,

Cloudy with a chance of pebble showers
Tidally locked with its star and orbiting very close to it, the exoplanet Corot-7b is hot enough to melt rock on its star-facing side.

Prenatal exposure to flu pandemic increased chances of heart disease
People exposed to a H1NI strain of influenza A while in utero were significantly more likely to have cardiovascular disease later in life.

National Science Foundation funds systems biology study of crop drought responses
Water scarcity, caused by factors such as climate change and rapid population growth, can limit crop production, especially when it occurs during essential periods of plant growth. 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