Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

November 05, 2009
Acetaminophen may be linked to asthma in children and adults
New research shows that the popular pain reliever, acetaminophen, may be tied to asthma in both children and adults.

Physical education key to improving health in low-income adolescents
School-based physical education plays a key role in curbing obesity and improving fitness among adolescents from low-income communities, according to a new study led by researchers at the University of California, San Francisco and UC Berkeley.

Gene therapy technique slows brain disease
A strategy that combines gene therapy with blood stem cell therapy may be a useful tool for treating a fatal brain disease, French researchers have found.

Oral contraceptives may benefit women with asthma
New research from the November issue of Chest shows that women with asthma who are on oral contraceptives may have better outcomes than women who are not on the medication.

DOE/Los Alamos National Laboratory names 6 scientists as 2009 Fellows

New TMS clinic offers noninvasive treatment for major depression
Rush University Medical Center has opened the Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation Clinic to offer patients suffering from major depression a safe, effective, nondrug treatment.

Does green tea prevent cancer? Evidence continues to brew, but questions remain
Although scientists are reluctant to officially endorse green tea as a cancer prevention method, evidence continues to grow about its protective effects, including results of a new study published in Cancer Prevention Research, a journal of the American Association for Cancer Research, which suggests some reduction in oral cancer.

How does the mind grasp climate change?
A new 43-page guide,

Autism Consortium symposium draws record number of researchers, advocates, parents for autism update
The Autism Consortium, an innovative collaboration of researchers, clinicians, funders and families dedicated to catalyzing research and enhancing clinical care for autism spectrum disorders, held its fourth annual symposium on Oct.

1930s drug slows tumor growth
Drugs sometimes have beneficial side effects. A glaucoma treatment causes luscious eyelashes.

C. Noel Bairey Merz, M.D., receives AHA's 2009 Women in Cardiology Mentoring Award
C. Noel Bairey Merz, M.D., an internationally recognized authority on women's heart health, will receive the American Heart Association's 2009 Women in Cardiology Mentoring Award at the organization's Scientific Sessions 2009, to be held in Orlando at the Orange County Convention Center Nov.

PTB Terahertz calibration satisfies US laser manufacturer
Terahertz radiation still lies in a metrological no man's land -- a metrology gap.

Caught in the act: Butterfly mate preference shows how 1 species can become 2
Breaking up may not be hard to do, say scientists who've found a population of tropical butterflies that may be splitting into two distinct species.

NOAA, NY town and Oyster Farmer collaborate to understand impact of floating shellfish nursery
With demand for seafood growing, shellfish farmers often use a floating nursery called a FLUPSY, or Floating Upwelling System, to improve growth of very young shellfish known as seed and increase their chances of surviving until they are harvested.

CU-Boulder map of human bacterial diversity shows wide interpersonal differences
A University of Colorado at Boulder team has developed the first atlas of bacterial diversity across the human body, charting wide variations in microbe populations that live in different regions of the human body and which aid us in physiological functions that contribute to our health.

Study suggests dentists can identify patients at risk for fatal cardiovascular event
A new study indicates dentists can play a potentially life-saving role in health care by identifying patients at risk of fatal heart attacks and referring them to physicians for further evaluation.

New Notre Dame study provides insights into the molecular basis of tumor cell behavior
A new study by a team of researchers led by Crislyn D'Souza-Schorey, associate professor of biological sciences, sheds light on the molecular basis by which tumor cells modulate their surroundings to favor cancer progression.

Researchers hail innovative plan to save rainforest, reduce greenhouse gas emissions
An innovative proposal by the Ecuadorian government to protect an untouched, oil rich region of Amazon rainforest is a precedent-setting and potentially economically viable approach, says a team of environmental researchers from the University of Maryland, the World Resources Institute and Save America's Forests.

Higher incidence of thyroid cancer in volcanic area of Sicily
People living in volcanic areas may be at a higher risk for thyroid cancer, according to a new study published online Nov.

The last European hadrosaurs lived in the Iberian Peninsula
Spanish researchers have studied the fossil record of hadrosaurs, the so-called

How size matters for catalysts
University of Utah chemists demonstrated the first conclusive link between the size of catalyst particles on a solid surface, their electronic properties and their ability to speed chemical reactions.

Airborne nitrogen shifts aquatic nutrient limitation in pristine lakes
The impact of airborne nitrogen released from the burning of fossil fuels and wide-spread use of fertilizers in agriculture is much greater that previously recognized and even extends to remote alpine lakes, according to a study published Nov.

Approved lymphoma drug shows promise in early tests against bone cancer
A drug already approved for the treatment of lymphoma may also slow the growth of the most deadly bone cancer in children and teens, according to an early-stage study published online today in the International Journal of Cancer.

AGU journal highlights -- Nov. 5, 2009
Featured in this release are research papers on the following topics:

Crossing the line: how aggressive cells invade the brain
Real-time observation sheds new light on multiple sclerosis.

Rice wins NIH funding for oral-cancer test
Rice University has won a $2 million NIH stimulus grant to develop an inexpensive test for oral cancer that a dentist or oral surgeon could perform by passing a brush over a suspicious lesion.

Does prostate-specific antigen velocity help in early detection prostate cancer?
The November issue of European Urology, the official journal of the European Association of Urology, features an article focusing on prostate specific antigen velocity and early cancer detection.

Kent State receives $2.7 million NSF training grant for environmental aquatic resource sensing
Kent State University has been awarded a training grant in the amount of $2,756,719 by the National Science Foundation under its Integrative Graduation Education and Research Training program.

Boston University School of Medicine professor receives award
Francis A. Farraye, M.D., M.Sc., F.A.C.G., F.A.S.G.E., a professor of medicine at Boston University School of Medicine and clinical director in the Gastroenterology Section at Boston Medical Center recently received the William D.

Rapid supernova could be new class of exploding star
UC Berkeley post-doc Dovi Poznanski was looking through seven-year-old data when he chanced upon a very strange supernova that flashed and was gone in less than a month, when 3-4 months is typical.

Dartmouth professor finds that iconic Oswald photo was not faked
Computer Scientist Hany Farid has new evidence regarding a photograph of accused JFK assassin Lee Harvey Oswald.

Plastic surgeons offer microsurgery technique for breast reconstruction, tummy tuck after mastectomy
Since her teens, Jennifer Jablon had watched family members deal with breast cancer during their 40s, 50s and 60s.

International survey of physicians in 11 countries reveals US lagging in access, quality, HIT use
Fifty-eight percent of primary care doctors in the US report their patients often have difficulty paying for medications and care, and half of US doctors spend substantial time dealing with restrictions insurance companies place on their patients' care, according to findings from the 2009 Commonwealth Fund International Health Policy Survey published online today in the journal Health Affairs.

November 2009 story tips from the US Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory
Fuel economy ratings for the new 2010 model year automobiles are posted at, which ORNL maintains for the US Department of Energy and the US Environmental Protection Agency.

Higher health insurance costs force doctors to talk about money with patients
As health insurers require people to base more treatment decisions on out-of-pocket costs, physicians should learn to talk to patients about money, according to researchers at Wake Forest University School of Medicine.

Deciphering the regulatory code
Thanks to scientists at the European Molecular Biology Laboratory in Heidelberg, Germany, it is now possible to accurately predict when and where different CRMs will be active.

Carnegie Mellon researchers receive grant
Carnegie Mellon's Lucio Soibelman, H. Scott Matthews and Jose M.F.

Researchers explore new ways to prevent spinal cord damage using a vitamin B3 precursor
Substances naturally produced by the human body may one day help prevent paralysis following a spinal cord injury, according to researchers at Weill Cornell Medical College.

Green tea shows promise as chemoprevention agent for oral cancer, M. D. Anderson study finds
Green tea extract has shown promise as cancer prevention agent for oral cancer in patients with a pre-malignant condition known as oral leukoplakia, according to researchers at the University of Texas M.

Early scents really do get 'etched' in the brain
Common experience tells us that particular scents of childhood can leave quite an impression, for better or for worse.

Near vision research study
The Cornea and Laser Eye Institute is participating in a research study to determine if an investigational corneal inlay can safely and effectively reduce the need for reading glasses.

Iranian-Canadian scholar's commitment to non-violence garners Spanish peace prize
University of Toronto political philosopher Ramin Jahanbegloo is the recipient of the 2009 Peace Prize awarded by the Association for the United Nations in Spain.

Nanyang Technological University joins leading US innovation transfer network, the iBridge Network
The iBridge Network, a program of the not-for-profit Kauffman Innovation Network Inc., today announced that it has expanded internationally by signing the acclaimed Nanyang Technological University as its 100th member organization.

Coral reefs inspire rare consensus -- just save them
One of the first set of studies to examine what tourists and recreation enthusiasts actually think about coral reef ecosystems suggests they are a rare exception to controversies over human use versus environmental conservation -- their stunning beauty is so extraordinary that almost everyone wants them protected in perpetuity.

Key player identified in cascade that leads to hypertension-related kidney damage
A key player in a cascade that likely begins with stress and leads to high blood pressure and kidney damage has been identified by researchers who say the finding may lead to better ways to control both.

Researcher: 'Optical biopsy' for breast cancer increasingly accurate
Most biopsies following mammograms reveal benign abnormalities, not cancer.

Keeping hearts pumping with 'LifeFlow'
LifeFlow, a new device from Tel Aviv University's Professor Ofer Barnea, applies a sophisticated algorithm to a computer-controlled IV drip to improve the efficiency of disaster response in the field.

Parents just don't understand
Recent studies investigating the question of parental control in the west and in east Asian countries suggest that extreme meddling by parents can have negative effects on their children's psychological development in both of those regions, although the effects may not be uniform.

Lactose intolerance rates may be significantly lower than previously believed
Prevalence of lactose intolerance may be far lower than previously estimated, according to a new study.

Melatonin, a hormone segregated by human body, regulates sleep better than somniferous
Scientists of the University of Granada state that the exogenous administration of melatonin corrects the sleep/wakefulness pace when human biological clock gets altered.

A new system preserves the right to privacy in Internet searches
A team of Catalan researchers has developed a protocol to distort the user profile generated by Internet search engines, in such a way that they cannot save the searches undertaken by Internet users and thus preserve their privacy.

Springer to partner with Society of Wetland Scientists
Starting in January 2010, Springer will publish Wetlands, the official journal of the Society of Wetland Scientists.

Penn's Arthur H. Rubenstein receives Distinguished Service award from AAMC
Arthur H. Rubenstein, M.B.B.Ch., executive vice president of the University of Pennsylvania for the Health System, and dean, School of Medicine, will receive the Abraham Flexner Award for Distinguished Service to Medical Education from the Association of American Medical Colleges.

Montana State University to figure out tricky viruses, adapt for gene therapy
Montana State University has a new grant to tap into the talent that viruses have for invading cells and seizing control.

All dressed-up and nowhere to go
Parents who dress their children in inappropriate clothing could be inadvertently hampering their child's physical activity in childcare settings.

Stanford study shows neural stem cells in mice affected by gene associated with longevity
A gene associated with longevity in roundworms and humans has been shown to affect the function of stem cells that generate new neurons in the adult brain, according to researchers at the Stanford University School of Medicine.

Horse genome sequence and analysis published in Science
An international team of researchers has decoded the genome of the domestic horse Equus caballus, revealing a genome structure with remarkable similarities to humans and more than one million genetic differences across a variety of horse breeds.

Genome sequence for the domestic horse to be unveiled
The whole genome sequence of the domestic horse has been completed by the genome-sequencing center of the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard, in collaboration with an international team of researchers that includes scientists at the University of California, Davis.

Research findings key for understanding, interpreting genetic testing for long QT syndrome
Results of a long QT syndrome study published in the current issue of Circulation play an important role in understanding genetic testing's role in diagnosing disease, according to the senior author, Michael Ackerman, M.D., Ph.D.

Small increases in phosphorus mean higher risk of heart disease
Higher levels of phosphorus in the blood are linked to increased calcification of the coronary arteries -- a key marker of heart disease risk, according to a study in an upcoming issue of Clinical Journal of the American Society of Nephrology.

Insect scientists converge in Indianapolis
Approximately 2,500 entomologists and professionals in related disciplines from around the world will gather Dec.

Atlanta's Fernbank Museum tracks infamous conquistador through Southeast
Atlanta's Fernbank Museum of Natural History has discovered evidence of Hernando de Soto's 1540 journey through the Southeast.

Stimulus grant to help MSU team improve drug development from plants
Scientists at Michigan State University are receiving nearly $3 million from the National Institutes of Health to uncover how several popular plants make medicinal compounds.

Boat tail reduces truck fuel consumption by 7.5 percent
A boat tail, a tapering protrusion mounted on the rear of a truck, leads to fuel savings of 7.5 percent.

Federal stimulus funds support studies geared to improving HIV care and prevention
One study will look at using mobile phone text messages linked to a web-based personal health record to help HIV patients' adherence to pill-taking regimens.

The first casualty of war
Researchers reporting in BioMed Central's open access journal Conflict and Health found that the discrepancy in media reporting of casualty numbers in the Iraq conflict can potentially misinform the public and contribute to distorted perceptions and gross underestimates of the number of civilians killed in the armed conflict.

UAB awarded $11.5 million to explore ways to test youth for HIV, link them to care
Two new grants are for leadership and coordination of the Adolescent Medicine Trials Network for HIV/AIDS Intervention (ATN), a research network in the United States and Puerto Rico working to curb the epidemic through prevention, testing and treatment for youth ages 12 to 24.

Are the Alps growing or shrinking?
The Alps are growing just as quickly in height, as they are shrinking.

Perceived parent-pressure causes excessive antibiotic prescription
Antibiotic over-prescription is promoted by pediatricians' perception of parents' expectations.

Children starved of oxygen at birth have less brain injury if therapeutically cooled
Children whose brains are starved of oxygen at birth suffer less brain injury if they undergo therapeutic cooling.

Newly revised guidelines for managing thyroid cancer published in Thyroid journal
The American Thyroid Association has released new, revised Management Guidelines for the diagnosis and treatment of patients with thyroid nodules and thyroid cancer.

Study reveals how plants and bacteria 'talk' to thwart disease
Unwrapping some of the mystery from how plants and bacteria communicate to trigger an innate immune response, scientists at the University of California, Davis, have identified the bacterial signaling molecule that matches up with a specific receptor in rice plants to ward off a devastating disease known as bacterial blight of rice.

US and European experts applaud new transatlantic task force on antibiotic resistance threat
U.S. and European Experts Applaud New Transatlantic Task Force on Antibiotic Resistance Threat

For improving early literacy, reading comics is no child's play
Carol L. Tilley, a professor of library and information science at Illinois, says that comic books are just as sophisticated as other forms of literature, and children benefit from reading them at least as much as they do from reading other types of books.

Research studies techniques for conservation and restoration of color photographs
The conservation and restoration of photographs is a topic that, in general, has not been very much researched.

Male sabertoothed cats were pussycats compared to macho lions
Despite their fearsome fangs, male sabertoothed cats may have been less aggressive than many of their feline cousins, says a new study of male-female size differences in extinct big cats.

$11 million NIH grant for stem cell research awarded to Rhode Island Hospital
Rhode Island Hospital has received an $11 million grant that will fund research that will lead to a general understanding of stem cell biology and identify unique approaches to tissue regeneration in lung and marrow diseases.

2 children suffering from adrenoleukodystrophy saved thanks to the ELA Association
The ELA Association and Zinedine Zidane, its emblematic ambassador, are proud to announce a world premiere: the results regarding the gene therapy in adrenoleukodystrophy conducted in France have just been published in the prestigious journal Science.

Inappropriate sepsis therapy leads to fivefold reduction in survival
New research from the November issue of CHEST shows that patients with septic shock may have a fivefold reduction in survival.

New synthetic molecules trigger immune response to HIV and prostate cancer
Researchers at Yale University have developed synthetic molecules capable of enhancing the body's immune response to HIV and HIV-infected cells, as well as to prostate cancer cells.

Jülich neutron scientists inaugurate unique device in the US
A unique large-scale research device from Jülich went into operation in the US yesterday.

Genomes of biofuel yeasts reveal clues that could boost fuel ethanol production worldwide
As global temperatures and energy costs continue to soar, renewable sources of energy will be key to a sustainable future.

Excitation pattern peak is more important determinant of vowel quality
Vowel perception is a central problem of speech research, and by far no compelling explanation has been proposed for all phenomena in speech perception.

First use of antibody and stem cell transplantation to successfully treat advanced leukemia
For the first time, researchers at Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center have reported the use of a radiolabeled antibody to deliver targeted doses of radiation, followed by a stem cell transplant, to successfully treat a group of leukemia and pre-leukemia patients for whom there previously had been no other curative treatment options.

AACR to host Frontiers in Cancer Prevention Meeting
The AACR Frontiers in Cancer Prevention meeting is the location to learn about the latest in scientific breakthroughs and epidemiology regarding the prevention of one of the world's deadliest diseases.

Journal special edition outlines rotavirus burden and need for vaccines
The Journal of Infectious Diseases has released a special edition, Global Rotavirus Surveillance: Preparing for the Introduction of Rotavirus Vaccines.

Tackling new Arctic challenges from space
International scientists, researchers and decision makers met at the Space and the Arctic workshop to identify the needs and challenges of working and living in the rapidly changing Arctic and to explore how space-based services can help to meet those needs.

German high-school students involved in an astronomical research project
Astronomy & Astrophysics publishes the results of an unusual research project, by a team involving German high-school students.

New type of supernova explosion reported; predicted by theoretical physicists at UCSB
A new class of supernova was discovered by scientists at Berkeley and may be the first example of a new type of exploding star.

Mom was right: Nice guys don't always finish last
Picture it: one jerk in a bar spends the night delivering bad come-ons to women.

Kidney function decline increases risk of heart failure and premature death
Declining kidney function is linked to a higher risk of heart failure, heart attack, peripheral arterial disease, and early death in individuals with or without kidney disease, according to a pair of studies appearing in an upcoming issue of the Journal of the American Society Nephrology.

Babies' language learning starts from the womb
From their very first days, newborns' cries already bear the mark of the language their parents speak, reveals a new study published online on Nov.

Why nice guys usually get the girls
For the insects called water striders, the pushiest guys don't always get the girls, according to a research team led by a University of Arizona scientist.

Keystone Symposia announces new three-year grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
Keystone Symposia is pleased to announce that it has received a second grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation worth $2.7 million over three years to fund meetings and Global Health Travel Awards in the Keystone Symposia Global Health Series.

Gene therapy success in severe brain disorder applauded by the STOP ALD Foundation
First gene therapy success in boys with fatal brain disorder -- the Stop ALD Foundation, having spurred a successful European gene therapy trial, is now pressing to bring this therapy to the US.

Complete Genomics publishes in Science on low-cost sequencing of 3 human genomes
Complete Genomics, a third-generation human genome sequencing company, today announced publication of a report in the journal Science describing its proprietary DNA sequencing platform, including analysis of sequence data from three complete human genomes.

Chemists describe solar energy progress and challenges, including the 'artificial leaf'
Scientists are making progress toward development of an 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