Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

March 19, 2010
Designer nanomaterials on-demand
Berkeley Lab researchers at the Molecular Foundry have developed a universal method by which designer nanomaterials can be created on-demand.

Study shows further benefits of noscapine for prostate cancer
Noscapine, a non-addictive derivative of opium, has previously been shown to have anti-cancer properties.

Estimating ethanol yields from CRP croplands
The scramble to find sufficient land for biofuel production has experts eyeing marginal croplands that have been placed in the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP).

Evidence indicates humans' early tree-dwelling ancestors were also bipedal
Experiments by University of Arizona anthropologist David Raichlen and his colleagues show that fossil footprints made 3.6 million years ago are the earliest direct evidence of early hominids using the kind of efficient, upright posture and gait now seen in modern humans.

Silver proves its mettle for nanotech applications
Hao Yan and Yan Liu, professors at the Biodesign Institute's Center for Single Molecule Biophysics and their collaborators have introduced a new method to deterministically and precisely position silver nanoparticles onto self-assembling DNA scaffolds.

Mayo research: Intervention drops hospital infection rate by 1/3
Clostridium difficile is the one of the leading pathogens causing hospital-acquired infection in the United States.

NSF dispatches rapid response oceanographic expedition to Chile earthquake site
Scientists funded by the National Science Foundation and affiliated with the Scripps Institution of Oceanography at the University of California at San Diego are undertaking an expedition to explore the rupture site of the 8.8-magnitude Chilean earthquake.

Failed college dreams don't spell depression, study finds
High school seniors, take note: a wise person once said,

New launch date for CryoSat-2 confirmed
The technical issue with the second stage of the Dnepr rocket that delayed the launch of ESA's Earth Explorer CryoSat-2 satellite in February has now been resolved -- and the new launch date of April 8 has been set.

GW Ph.D. candidate and UCL grad student discover new species of raptor dinosaur
A new species of raptor dinosaur being named Linheraptor exquisitus has been discovered by George Washington University doctoral candidate Jonah Choiniere and Michael D.

Report: Actions to protect fish in California Bay-Delta 'scientifically justified'
Most of the actions proposed by two federal agencies to reduce water diversions in the California Bay-Delta in order to protect endangered and threatened fish species are

Sustainable energy: a challenge nearly as great as global warming
The Latin American Convention of the Global Sustainable Bioenergy Project which will be held in Sao Paulo, Brazil, on March 23-25.

Students discover new species of raptor dinosaur
A new species of dinosaur, a relative of the famous Velociraptor, has been discovered in Inner Mongolia by two Ph.D. students.

GEN reports on therapeutic potential of microRNA
Researchers around the globe are working on turning microRNAs, over 5,000 of which already have been identified, into novel drugs for a wide range of applications, reports Genetic Engineering & Biotechnology News.

Media advisory: ARRS 2010 Annual Meeting
The American Roentgen Ray Society will hold its annual scientific meeting, May 2-7, 2010, at the Manchester Grand Hyatt in San Diego.

Sleep deprivation influences drug use in teens' social networks
Recent studies have shown that behaviors such as happiness, obesity, smoking and altruism are

A mini laboratory for all cases
Many illnesses can be reliably diagnosed through laboratory tests, but these in vitro analyses often use up valuable time.

Conventional infection control measures found effective in reducing MRSA rates
Scientists at the Virginia Commonwealth University Medical Center found that an emphasis on compliance with non-pathogen specific infection control practices such as hand hygiene, efforts to reduce device-related infections and chlorhexidine bathing (a daily bath with the same antibacterial agent used by surgeons to

Ben-Gurion University researcher receives rappaport prize for excellence in biomedical research
Professor Cohen received the prize for her research that led to an innovative and pioneering product using algae to prevent cardiac tissue damage following acute myocardial infarction.

Presidential Endowed Chair in Pharmacy honors longtime University of Utah benefactor, L.S. Skaggs
In their ongoing support of the University of Utah's internationally regarded College of Pharmacy, the L.S.

ESA and Thales Alenia Space enter negotiations for MTG
The tendering process that will result in the supply of Europe's next series of meteorological satellites, Meteosat Third Generation, has reached an advanced stage as ESA invites Thales Alenia Space to enter formal contract negotiations.

Acne drug prevents HIV breakout
Johns Hopkins scientists have found that a safe and inexpensive antibiotic in use since the 1970s for treating acne effectively targets infected immune cells in which HIV, the virus that causes AIDS, lies dormant and prevents them from reactivating and replicating.

Identity, politics and Obama -- does 'who we are' still matter?
A groundbreaking new handbook released by SAGE this month brings together the vast and interdisciplinary field of identity research, culminating from a huge four-year, £4 million ESRC-funded research program on Identities and Social Action.

Microbe detective seeks out germs
Microorganisms are everywhere and most of them are harmless, but they can do a lot of damage in the manufacture of pharmaceuticals or in tissue transplants.

Rochester-led study leads to recommendation for use of heart failure treatment nationwide
The FDA's Circulatory System Devices Panel recommended that the cardiac resynchronization therapy defibrillator (CRT-D), developed by Boston Scientific, be approved for use in patients with mild heart failure in the United States.

NASA and NOAA's environmental satellite now GOES-15
Twelve days after a flawless launch, NASA and NOAA's Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite-P (GOES-P) reached its proper orbit and was renamed GOES-15.

Infection prevention efforts by National Guard Health Affairs in Saudi Arabia recognized with award
During the Fifth Decennial International Conference on Healthcare-Associated Infections, the Society for Healthcare Epidemiology of America and the Association for Professionals in Infection Control and Epidemiology awarded their first Partnership in Prevention Award to the National Guard Health Affairs in Saudi Arabia.

Causes found for stiff skin conditions
By studying the genetics of a rare inherited disorder called stiff skin syndrome, researchers at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine have learned more about scleroderma, a condition affecting about one in 5,000 people that leads to hardening of the skin as well as other debilitating and often life-threatening problems.

Perils of plastics: Risks to human health and the environment
Rolf Halden, associate professor in the School of Sustainable Engineering at Arizona State University and assistant director of Environmental Biotechnology at the Biodesign Institute has undertaken a survey of existing scientific literature concerning the hazards of plastics to human health and to the ecosystems we depend on.

Scientists take animal breeding to the next level
University of Alberta scientists have successfully sequenced the genome of two influential bulls, one beef and one dairy, the first animals to have been fully sequenced in Canada.

The Clay Mathematics Institute announces today that Dr. Grigoriy Perelman of St. Petersburg, Russia, is the recipient of the Millennium Prize for resolution of the Poincaré conjecture
The Clay Mathematics Institute announces today that Dr. Grigoriy Perelman of St.

Rare ATM gene mutations, plus radiation, may increase risk of a second breast cancer
Certain rare mutations in the ataxia telangiectasia mutated (ATM) gene, combined with radiation exposure, may increase a woman's risk of developing a second cancer in the opposite breast, according to a study published online March 19 in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute. 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