Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

March 16, 2010
American Chemical Society hosts sustainability forum at 239th National Meeting
The American Chemical Society invites news media covering its 239th National Meeting to the society's first sustainability forum on Tuesday, March 23, 3 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. in the Moscone Center Esplanade Ballroom 301.

Freezing out breast cancer
Interventional radiologists have opened the door to an encouraging potential future treatment for the nearly 200,000 women who are diagnosed with breast cancer in the United States each year: image-guided, multiprobe cryotherapy.

Severe acid reflux: Stomach wraps effective in short to medium term
Stomach wrap operations may be more effective than acid suppression tablets in the treatment of severe acid reflux, according to a new Cochrane Systematic Review.

Researchers ID brain abnormalities in children exposed to methamphetamine in utero
UCLA researchers used structural magnetic resonance imaging to show for the first time that individuals whose mothers abused methamphetamine during pregnancy (with or without alcohol abuse) had brain structural abnormalities that were more severe than in children whose mothers abused alcohol alone.

Media, small businesses invited to ACS Webinar on small and medium businesses
News media, scientists and others interested in finance, entrepreneurship and the chemical sciences are invited to join an American Chemical Society Small & Medium Business Webinar on employee ownership.

SBRT eliminates tumors with promising survival for early stage inoperable lung cancer patients
Highly focused stereotactic body radiation therapy can eliminate the targeted tumor while avoiding treatment-related illness and may ultimately improve survival for patients with inoperable non-small cell lung cancer, according to early findings of a Radiation Therapy Oncology Group study published in the March 17 cancer-themed issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

Major report reveals the environmental and social impact of the 'livestock revolution'
Global meat production has tripled in the past three decades and could double its present level by 2050, according to a major report on the livestock industry by an international team of scientists and policy experts.

Jaws -- 4 million B.C.
Palaeontologists have discovered evidence of how an extinct shark attacked its prey, reconstructing a killing that took place 4 million years ago, reports the journal Palaeontology.

Research team led by Cedars-Sinai identifies genes linked to ulcerative colitis
A study of the human genome led by Cedars-Sinai researchers has now identified genes linked to ulcerative colitis, offering clues as to what causes the condition and potential avenues for new therapies to treat the disease.

Study says therapeutics for trauma patients may not be effective due to an infection
A Kansas State University study is analyzing how the immune system is involved in damage to the intestines following hemorrhagic shock.

New TB booster shows promise
A booster shot appears to improve tuberculosis (TB) resistance in previously vaccinated adults, according to new research in South Africa.

USC researchers identify key mechanism that guides cells to form heart tissue
Researchers at the Keck School of Medicine of the University of Southern California have identified a key cellular mechanism that guides embryonic heart tissue formation -- a process which, if disrupted, can lead to a number of common congenital heart defects.

ID physicians call for 10 new antibiotics by 2020
As the deaths and suffering caused by antibiotic-resistant bacterial infections continue to rise around the world, the Infectious Diseases Society of America is urging a global commitment to develop 10 new antibiotics by 2020, known as the 10 x 20 initiative, to address this public health crisis and safeguard patients' health.

Shutting out soft tissue cancers in the cold
Cryotherapy, an interventional radiology treatment to freeze cancer tumors, may become the treatment of the future for cancer that has metastasized in soft tissues (such as ovarian cancer) and in bone tumors.

Global access with Liebert mobile iPhone app
Announcing the launch of the Liebert Mobile iPhone App, a dynamic new application delivering the latest news, resources, press releases, research, and multimedia content directly to your iPhone.

Catastrophic flooding may be more predictable after Penn researchers build a mini river delta
Researchers created a miniature river delta that replicates flooding patterns seen in natural rivers, resulting in a mathematical model capable of aiding in the prediction of the next catastrophic flood.

Living longer: Colon cancer patients gain time with radiofrequency ablation treatment
Approximately half of Americans living with colorectal cancer will develop liver metastases at some point during the course of their disease.

UV exposure has increased over the last 30 years, but stabilized since the mid-1990s
NASA scientists analyzing 30 years of satellite data have found that the amount of ultraviolet radiation reaching Earth's surface has increased markedly over the last three decades.

Increased radiation dose does not increase long-term side effects for prostate cancer patients
Boosting the radiation dose given to prostate cancer patients to a level that cut tumor recurrence in half did not increase the severity of side effects reported by patients up to a decade later.

First study to link earlier butterfly emergence with climate change
Butterflies are emerging in spring over 10 days earlier than they did 65 years ago, a shift that has been linked to regional human-induced climate change in a University of Melbourne-led study.

Older nonsmokers gain most from tobacco ban, study suggests
Older people who have never smoked benefit most from smoking bans, a study suggests.

X-ray telescope to detect dark energy in space
It will be on board in 2012, when a Soyus-2 rocket carries an X-ray telescope into space to decode the nature of the universe's dark energy: an X-ray detector developed by the Max Planck Institute for Extraterrestrial Physics.

Stevens' CSR provides vital maritime information to local, state and national agencies
Stevens Institute of Technology was in 2008 named by the US Department of Homeland Security as one of five national Centers of Excellence and was selected to lead a national research effort to address Port Security.

Gene expression-based prognostic signatures in lung cancer not ready for clinical use
A review of published articles on gene expression-based prognostic signatures in lung cancer revealed little evidence that any of the signatures are ready for clinical use.

SEBM Best Paper Awards for articles published in 2009
SEBM is pleased to announce the winners of the Best Paper Awards for articles published in the journal Experimental Biology and Medicine during 2009.

Study evaluates costs and benefits of new chemotherapy drugs
New chemotherapy agents appear associated with improvements in survival time for patients with metastatic colorectal cancer but at substantial cost.

Family mealtimes help children with asthma breathe easier, study says
Children who have asthma are at high risk for separation anxiety, but a new study has found a home remedy that parents can use -- regular family mealtimes.

Media reports may paint overly optimistic view of cancer
Newspaper and magazine reports about cancer appear more likely to discuss aggressive treatment and survival than death, treatment failure or adverse events, and almost none mention end-of-life palliative or hospice care, according to a report in the March 22 issue of Archives of Internal Medicine, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

Frogs, foam and fuel: University of Cincinnati researchers convert solar energy to sugars
In natural photosynthesis, plants take in solar energy and carbon dioxide and then convert it to oxygen and sugars.

As girth grows, risk of sudden cardiac death shrinks
Study finds that being skinny confers no advantage when it comes to the risk of dying suddenly from cardiac causes.

Although most cancer centers have palliative care programs, scope of services varies widely
Palliative care services are available at most US cancer centers, although the scope of services offered and the degree of integration between palliative care and oncology care varies widely among centers, according to a study in the March 17 issue of JAMA, a theme issue on cancer.

Staples lead to higher risk of infection after joint surgery than traditional stitches
Using metal staples to close wounds after orthopedic (joint) surgery can lead to a greater risk of infection than using traditional nylon sutures, concludes a study published on today.

Preventive behaviors limited household transmission of H1N1 influenza during initial outbreak
Simple, common sense behaviors, including having a discussion at home about how to prevent influenza, can help limit the spread of H1N1 in a household, according to a study of the initial outbreak in New York City in 2009.

Colon cancer treatment frequently is less aggressive than recommended, RAND-UCLA study finds
New results from a major initiative on the quality of cancer care in the United States show that patients with a common type of colon cancer -- especially older patients -- often are not treated as aggressively with chemotherapy as research shows is necessary.

The effect of landscape position on biomass crop yield
Scientists investigate differences in woody and herbaceous crop productivity and biomass yield as a function of landscape position at the field scale.

Stem cells build new blood vessels to treat peripheral arterial disease
Bone marrow stem cells suspended in X-ray-visible microbubbles dramatically improve the body's ability to build new blood vessels in the upper leg -- providing a potential future treatment for those with peripheral arterial disease or PAD, say researchers at the Society of Interventional Radiology's 35th Annual Scientific Meeting in Tampa, Fla.

From international harbor to native habitat
In the 1930s, soil used as ballast to weigh down cargo ships from South America to Mobile, Alabama introduced the red imported fire ant to the southern United States.

University of Toronto historian wins prestigious international prize
Natalie Zemon Davis, professor emerita from Princeton University and now a University of Toronto history scholar whose books have reached a wide audience, has won one of the world's top academic prizes.

Bench to bassinet program seeks congenital heart disease treatments
To help speed the translation of scientific discoveries into usable treatments in congenital heart disease, the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute of the National Institutes of Health launched the Bench to Bassinet Program.

Emergency contraception: Advance provision does not reduce pregnancy rates
Providing emergency contraception to women in advance of need does not reduce pregnancy rates, despite increased use and faster use after unprotected sexual intercourse.

Anti-obesity drugs unlikely to provide lasting benefit according to scientists
Scientists at the University of Liverpool argue that anti-obesity drugs fail to provide lasting benefits for health and well-being because they tackle the biological consequences of obesity, and not the important psychological causes of over-consumption and weight gain.

Progress has been made in war on cancer, but still many challenges
Although there have been achievements in the battle against cancer, including a decrease in the rate of death and new diagnoses, cancer remains one of the leading causes of death in the US, with a need for continued improvement in the areas of prevention, detection and treatment, according to a commentary in the March 17 issue of JAMA, a theme issue on cancer.

Blocking cancer in its path: New cellular defect discovered
UCSF researchers have discovered that a key cellular defect that disturbs the production of proteins in human cells can lead to cancer susceptibility.

UAB oncologists: HPV vaccine protects from cancer recurrence
A new study shows that the Gardasil vaccine reduces the likelihood of human papillomavirus-related disease recurring after teen and adult women already have had surgery to remove cancer or certain pre-cancerous changes, said Warner Huh, M.D., an associate professor in the UAB Division of Gynecologic Oncology and lead presenter.

Unprecedented AIUM training guidelines speak to future of musculoskeletal ultrasound
The AIUM is pleased to announce that four professional societies have collaborated with AIUM to endorse the recent AIUM Training Guidelines for the Performance of Musculoskeletal Ultrasound Examinations.

New guidelines aim to prevent unnecessary death from thoracic aortic disease
New clinical guidelines spearheaded by the American College of Cardiology and the American Heart Association not only offer new recommendations for the diagnosis and management of thoracic aortic disease, they deliver a powerful message to physicians and patients: Early diagnosis and treatment can save lives.

UC researchers use engineering equation to help treat blockages in the heart
Improved care for cardiac patients and people with coronary artery disease is the goal of a new pilot study being led by engineering and medical researchers at the University of Cincinnati and the Cincinnati Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Center.

Apollo Solar Energy funds new $1.5 million CdTe solar research center at NJIT
NJIT received today from Apollo Solar Energy Inc. a three-year, $1.5 million grant to establish a solar research center.

The hot -- and cold -- interventional radiology treatments for recurrent prostate cancer
The first known patient cases using magnetic resonance-guided heat (laser interstitial thermal therapy) or cold (cryoablation) to treat prostate cancer recurrence after surgical removal of the prostate gland were presented by physicians at the Society of Interventional Radiology's 35th Annual Scientific Meeting in Tampa.

Jupiter's spot seen glowing
New ground-breaking thermal images obtained with ESO's Very Large Telescope and other powerful ground-based telescopes show swirls of warmer air and cooler regions never seen before within Jupiter's Great Red Spot, enabling scientists to make the first detailed interior weather map of the giant storm system linking its temperature, winds, pressure and composition with its color.

Long polymer chains dance the conga
University of Illinois researchers have demonstrated a new model for the motion of actin filaments, the molecules that give a cell its structure.

New biotech advance to add heart healthy omega-3s to US diet
A new heart-healthy, essential omega-3 fatty acid is about to improve an American pantry staple: soybean oil.

Metallic glass yields secrets under pressure
Metallic glasses are potentially useful materials at the frontier of materials science research.

Revisiting the need to detect circulating tumor cells
One of the most dangerous characteristics of cancer is its ability to metastasize, or spread through the body.

Cloves are the best natural antioxidant
Using spices eaten in the Mediterranean diet as natural antioxidants is a good way forward for the food industry, given the beneficial health effects of these products.

Childhood adversity may promote cellular aging
Children who suffer physical or emotional abuse could be faced with accelerated cellular aging as adults, according to new research published by Elsevier in Biological Psychiatry.

Going for gold with a novel interventional radiology treatment for pancreatic cancer
Pancreatic cancer -- known as the most fatal cancer with no known effective treatment-- requires a radical new therapy.

Honeybee learning, invasive harlequin ladybirds, and more
The following release contains a preview of papers publishing on March 17, 2010, in the journal PLoS ONE.

Obesity and passive smoking reduce oxygen supply to unborn baby
Babies born to mothers with obesity and exposed to passive smoking are more likely to have health problems than others.

Novel 'medical home' program for pediatric patients, families cuts ER visits in half
In the first quantitative study to look at the benefits of utilizing the medical home concept in a resident-education outpatient clinic at a specialized children's hospital, UCLA researchers found that participation in the program at UCLA significantly reduced families' use of the emergency room.

Boston Medical Center partners with Engineered Care to reduce hospital readmissions
Boston University's Technology Development Office, on behalf of Boston Medical Center, Northeastern University and Massachusetts Institute of Technology, has completed the exclusive license of Project RED (Re-Engineered Discharge) to Engineered Care Inc.

Study evaluates costs and benefits associated with new colon cancer therapies
New chemotherapy agents appear associated with improvements in survival time for patients with metastastic colorectal cancer, but at substantial cost, according to a report in the March 22 issue of Archives of Internal Medicine, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

Precision radiation therapy may improve survival rates of some lung cancer patients
A radiation therapy that uses multiple radiation beams to target tumors precisely has been shown to eliminate the primary tumor and ultimately may improve survival rates for lung-cancer patients unable to undergo surgery.

Depression: Antidepressants beneficial in physically ill patients
Antidepressants are effective against depression in patients suffering from physical illnesses, according to a new systematic review by Cochrane researchers at King's Health Partners Academic Health Sciences Centre in the UK.

Mount Sinai researchers are the first to identify heart abnormalities in World Trade Center workers
Researchers from Mount Sinai School of Medicine are presenting more than 20 ground-breaking studies at the American College of Cardiology 59th annual scientific session in Atlanta.

News from Stardust
As reported last week in Houston, two most promising candidates for stardust have been identified.

Study highlights forest protected areas as a critical strategy for slowing climate change
A new study involving scientists from 13 different organizations, universities and research institutions states that forest protection offers one of the most effective, practical, and immediate strategies to combat climate change.

Sea lice treatment increased in Norwegian fish breeding in 2009
A large increase in sales of agents used in sea lice infestations was seen in 2009.

STOP Obesity Alliance surveys show doctors, patients share role in weight loss, but ask, now what?
Primary care physicians agree they have a role in addressing obesity, but say they do not have the right weight management resources.

Experts gather to solve mystery of largest recorded die-off of great whales
What is causing the largest die-off of great whales ever recorded?

Porous China-Myanmar border allowing illegal wildlife trade
Porous borders are allowing vendors in Myanmar to offer a door-to-door delivery service for illegal wildlife products such as tiger bone wine to buyers in China, according to TRAFFIC's latest snapshot into wildlife trade in China.

Novel interventional radiology treatment with microspheres shows promise for liver cancer patients
An interventional radiology treatment -- the use of intra-arterial yttrium-90 microspheres for liver cancer (also known as hepatocellular carcinoma) -- shows promise in prolonging life for many patients with this devastating condition, according to researchers at the Society of Interventional Radiology's 35th Annual Scientific Meeting in Tampa, Fla.

American Physical Society recognizes Rutgers professors for outstanding research
Two Rutgers University physics professors are receiving major prizes from the American Physical Society in recognition of their outstanding research.

Ultra-powerful laser makes silicon pump liquid uphill with no added energy
Researchers at the University of Rochester's Institute of Optics have discovered a way to make liquid flow vertically upward along a silicon surface, overcoming the pull of gravity, without pumps or other mechanical devices.

Rare armor-plated creature discovered in Canada's capital
Scientists have unearthed the remains of one of the world's rarest fossils -- in downtown Ottawa, reports the journal Palaeontology.

Simulations solve a 20-year-old riddle about why nebulae around masssive stars don't disappear
New simulations show that as the gas cloud surrounding a massive star collapses, it forms dense filamentary structures that absorb the star's radiation when it passes through them.

5th Annual Szent-Györgyi Prize for Progress in Cancer Research awarded
The National Foundation for Cancer Research announced today that renowned scientist Peter K.

Western researcher solves 37-year-old space mystery
A researcher from the University of Western Ontario has helped solve a 37-year-old space mystery using lunar images released yesterday by NASA and maps from his own atlas of the moon.

2 at 1 stroke -- how cells protect themselves from cancer
Cells have two different protection programs to safeguard them from getting out of control under stress and from dividing without stopping and developing cancer.

Case managers help low-income women receive more timely breast cancer diagnosis
Case management appears to be associated with more appropriate follow-up and shorter time to diagnostic resolution among low-income women who receive an abnormal result on a mammogram, according to a report in the March 22 issue of Archives of Internal Medicine, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

Interventional radiology innovators: Advancing minimally invasive modern medicine
Over the past 40 years, more than 2,400 patents and patent applications -- pioneering modern medicine with the devices and drugs that advance minimally invasive treatments -- have been filed by members of the Society of Interventional Radiology.

Thrill-seeking holiday-makers are putting dolphins at risk
Tourists wanting to watch and swim with dolphins are now being urged to keep their distance in a bid to protect both the animals and the local communities whose livelihoods depend on them.

Caltech and UCSD scientists establish leech as model for study of reproductive behavior
Researchers at Caltech and the University of California, San Diego, have discovered that injecting a simple hormone into leeches creates a novel way to study how hormones and the nervous system work together to produce species-specific reproductive behavior.

Materials Design client wins 2 GM Innovation Awards
A Materials Design client and colleague, Dr. Louis G. Hector Jr. of the General Motors R&D Center, has been honored with two GM R&D Innovation Awards for his research on fundamentals of interfacial tribology and multiscale modeling of high-temperature deformation in aluminum.

Integrated care can cut chronic back pain work disability by 4 months
A program of integrated care, directed at both the patient and the workplace, can help people with chronic low-back pain return to work, on average, four months earlier than those receiving usual care, finds a study published on today.

Mastery of rare-earth elements vital to America's security
Used in everything from batteries to electric motors, rare-earth elements are vital to America's security, Karl A.

Society of Interventional Radiology announces gold medalists
Three Society of Interventional Radiology members, John D. Fulco, M.D., F.S.I.R.; Irvin F.

Carnegie Mellon to host workshop about basics of technology entrepreneurship
Carnegie Mellon University will host

Ireland's ethnic minorities want more self-expression in St. Patrick's parades
Those members of Ireland's ethnic minorities who participated in last year's St.

Potent radiation treatment provides tumor control for patients with inoperable lung cancer
Early findings suggest a radiation therapy that involves numerous highly focused and potent radiation beams provides targeted tumor control in nearly all patients, reduces treatment-related illness, and may ultimately improve survival for patients with inoperable non-small cell lung cancer, according to a study in the March 17 issue of JAMA, a theme issue on cancer.

Brain abnormalities identified that result from prenatal meth exposure
Children whose mothers abused methamphetamine (meth) during pregnancy show brain abnormalities that may be more severe than that of children exposed to alcohol prenatally, according to a study in the March 17 issue of the Journal of Neuroscience.

A NASA satellite mosaic of twin tropical troublesome cyclones: Tomas and Ului
Tropical Cyclones Tomas and Ului are both causing problems for residents in the South Pacific Ocean today, March 16, and watches and warnings are in effect for the Fiji Islands and the Solomon Islands, respectively.

Older patients with colon cancer less likely to receive chemotherapy after surgery
Even though older patients with colon cancer are less likely to receive chemotherapy following surgery because of concerns of adverse events, new research indicates that when they do receive this treatment, it is less toxic and of shorter duration than therapy younger patients receive, and older patients experience fewer adverse events, according to a study in the March 17 issue of JAMA, a theme issue on cancer.

Smoking, but not past alcohol abuse, may impair mental function
Men and women with a history of alcohol abuse may not see long-term negative effects on their memory and thinking, but female smokers do, a new study suggests.

Scientists urge treaty panel to reject ivory sale by Tanzania, Zambia
The fate of many African elephants hinges on a decision to be made this week in Qatar.

Potentially risky loans helped ease recession, new research shows
Questionable lending helped sink the US economy, but also provided a lifeline that kept countless firms afloat and averted an even deeper recession, according to research by a University of Illinois finance expert.

Age, gender can affect risk to radiation treatment
Scientists imaged cartilage, bone marrow and two types of mineral bone in 20 different skeletal sites from two newborns to learn more about how much radiation is absorbed by the body.

New dual action drug shows promise for treating high blood pressure and heart disease
A new dual-action drug, called LCZ696, is well tolerated and provides significantly greater reductions in blood pressure than the established angiotensin receptor blocker valsartan in patients with hypertension (high blood pressure). 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