Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

April 30, 2010
Making personalized lung cancer therapy a reality in Europe
The recent approval of Europe's first personalized treatment for lung cancer heralds the arrival of a new era for lung cancer treatment that will demand significant changes to the way cancer specialists and other hospital doctors work.

NC State wins ARPA-E grant to study extremophile production of biofuels
The US Department of Energy's Advanced Research Projects Agency has awarded a grant for more than $2.7 million to North Carolina State University to support research into the creation of biofuels using microbial organisms, called extremophiles, that live in high-temperature environments.

4-D software helps adjust for breathing when treating lung cancer with radiotherapy
A new 4-dimensional software program promises to improve the treatment of lung cancer by allowing doctors to take the movement of breathing into account when administering radiotherapy.

Global glaciation snowballed into giant change in carbon cycle
New data from a Princeton University-led team of geologists suggest that an episode called

Unmasking anthrax for immune destruction
Anthrax-causing bacteria can be engineered to shed their invisibility cloaks, making it easier for the immune system to eradicate it, according to a new study published in Microbiology.

Geraldine Dawson, Ph.D. of Autism Speaks appointed to NIH Interagency Autism Coordinating Committee
Autism Speaks announces appointment of Chief Science Officer Geraldine Dawson, Ph.D. as a public member of the NIH Interagency Autism Coordinating Committee by Secretary of Health and Human Services, Kathleen Sebelius.

Discovery prompts new theory on cause of autoimmune diseases
The recent discovery of a protein fragment capable of causing diabetes in mice has spurred researchers at National Jewish Health to propose a new hypothesis about the cause of diabetes and autoimmunity in general.

Coordinated punishment leads to increased cooperation in large
Humans are incredibly cooperative, but why do people cooperate and how is cooperation maintained?

New research by UCR physicists could help develop gamma ray lasers and produce fusion power
Physicists at the University of California, Riverside, have succeeded in isolating for the first time a sample of spin polarized positronium atoms, needed to make the Bose-Einstein condensate.

Molecular imaging can identify a potentially deadly blood vessel condition, research suggests
According to research published in the May issue of the Journal of Nuclear Medicine, molecular imaging can help physicians identify aortic dissection -- an often fatal blood vessel condition -- and help guide treatment.

UCSB scientists look beyond diamond for quantum computing
A team of scientists at UC Santa Barbara that helped pioneer research into the quantum properties of a small defect found in diamonds has now used cutting-edge computational techniques to produce a road map for studying defects in alternative materials.

Self-help -- tumors promote their own metastasis
Current research suggests that tumor-secreted exosomes inhibit the immune response, enhancing tumor metastasis.

Research team documents benefits of endovascular stent repair for traumatic aortic injury
A UC Davis team of cardiovascular specialists has demonstrated the effectiveness of using stents -- as compared to traditional open-chest surgery -- to repair aortas that are torn as the result of accidents.

ARS scientists study effects of grazing on grouse habitat
Agricultural Research Service scientists are taking a careful look at how grazing cattle affect sage-grouse habitat on high desert rangelands.

Protein: A critical component of overall health
The importance of high-quality protein foods in overall health was among the topics discussed this week at Experimental Biology 2010 in Anaheim, Calif.

Berkeley scientists discover inexpensive metal catalyst for generating hydrogen from water
Berkeley Lab researchers have discovered an inexpensive metal that can generate hydrogen from neutral water, even if it is dirty, and can operate in sea water.

Natural S-Equol suggested as critical component in SE5-OH for reducing menopausal hot flushes
Natural S-equol, a novel soy germ-based compound, is very likely the primary ingredient for reducing hot flushes in the dietary supplement SE5-OH, which is under development for reduction of menopause symptoms, according to pre-clinical efficacy presented at the Experimental Biology 2010 annual meeting.

Finding cancer 'cold spots' can help minimize radiotherapy side-effects
Fine-tuning radiotherapy to take into account which parts of a patient's tumor are growing fastest could improve control of cancer while subjecting patients to lower doses of radiation

NASA satellite imagery keeping eye on the Gulf oil spill
NASA's Terra and Aqua satellites are helping the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration keep tabs on the extent of the recent Gulf oil spill with satellite images from time to time.

First trial of pemetrexed with radiation and chemo in lung cancer shows promising results
The first trial of an important new combination therapy of treatment with the chemotherapy drug pemetrexed concurrent with radiation in lung cancer has delivered promising results.

Overwhelmed by diet tips? Change your environment first, study advises
According to a new finding by a team of Cornell University researchers, dieters who focus on changing their surroundings find it easier to adhere to their diet.

May 2010 Geology highlights
Geology examines a wide swath of topics, from the minute to the vast: zircon grains and the story of an ancient mountain range; what bubbles and crystals in volcanic rocks tell us about Strombolian eruptions; cyanobacterial blooms and the end-Permian faunal crisis; pumice formation in submarine domes; fossil

Adult mortality trends reveal massive rise in global inequalities
A study finds the chasm widening between countries with the highest and lowest rates of early deaths among adults.

European innovation tackles power cuts
The new generation of automated fault-fixing technology developed by the partners of EUREKA Project E!

MSU students gain research experience through plant genomics program
Michigan State University will use a National Science Foundation grant to fund a 10-week summer research program designed to provide intensive experience for undergraduate students in areas such as biochemistry, genetics and cutting-edge biological science methods.

Spill Central at University of Miami
Spill Central. As Florida Gov. Charlie Crist declares a state of emergency in parts of the Panhandle today, scientists at the Center for Southeastern Tropical Advanced Remote Sensing at the University of Miami continue to actively collaborate with several international satellite data providers to acquire critical environmental imagery for the Gulf of Mexico.

ONR to showcase cutting-edge technology at 2010 Sea-Air-Space Expo
The US Office of Naval Research and the Naval Research Laboratory will exhibit an array of technology at the Navy League Sea-Air-Space 2010 Exposition.

Cochlear implants benefit elderly patients
Older adults appear to benefit significantly from cochlear implants, but not as much as younger patients who had similar levels of hearing impairment before surgery, according to a new study by researchers at the Medical College of Wisconsin in Milwaukee.

First symptoms of psychosis evident in 12-year-olds
Children normally experience flights of fancy, including imaginary friends and conversations with stuffed animals, but some of them are also having hallucinations and delusions which might be the early signs of psychosis.

Blood test may identify lung cancer patients likely to respond to erlotinib
Testing for the presence of specific cancer protein

Study: Roller coasters linked to common ear injury
The high speeds of today's roller coasters bring a lot of thrills, but if you're not careful, the ride could also cause damage to your ears, say physicians at Henry Ford Hospital in Detroit.

Water-related conflicts set to escalate
Population growth, urbanization, increasing pollution, soil erosion and climate variations are all reflected in the management and adequacy of the world's waters.

LSU group develops maps charting demographics of the oil-spill region
A multidisciplinary group of LSU researchers has developed a series of maps charting the population demographics of the region surrounding the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.

Safety and influence on hormones and PSA examined in men taking novel soy germ-based dietary supplement, SE5-OH containing Natural S-equol
Measures of reproductive and thyroid hormone levels remained within normal limits in healthy adult Japanese men who took either of two doses of a supplement of SE5-OH containing Natural S-equol, a novel soy germ-based ingredient under development for the management of prostate health, according to a new placebo-controlled study.

Meta-analysis: Radiotherapy variants improve survival in non-metastatic lung cancer
A new meta-analysis reported at the second European Lung Cancer Conference shows that patients with both non-small cell lung cancer and small cell lung cancer benefit in terms of overall survival when treated with hyperfractionated or accelerated radiotherapy.

Biochemist unlocks gene's role in breast-tumor growth
New research led by McGill Biochemist Dr. William Muller helps explain why breast-milk cells lose their structure, causing them to clump up in strange ways and sometimes become cancer tumors.

Thuricin CD tested as specific antibiotic for Clostridium difficile
A University of Alberta researcher is part of an international team that has discovered a naturally occurring microorganism that directly targets a bacteria that causes a sometimes deadly intestinal disease in young children and the elderly.

K-State scientist to receive $1 million CAREER award
A lifelong interest in plants and science, nurtured by time on her family's Georgia peanut farm, led Anna Whitfield to a career in the study of plants -- and now to a $1 million National Science Foundation CAREER Award to continue her work at Kansas State University.

ASU mathematics educator receives NSF Career Award
Impacting how middle school students learn statistical reasoning, and how their teachers teach such reasoning, is the aim of a National Science Foundation-funded research project by Arizona State University mathematics educator Luis Saldanha.

Tool allows precise targeting of radiotherapy for cancer radiation therapy
A system that allows precise targeting of radiotherapy using real-time X-ray images has allowed French doctors to increase the dose of radiation they administered to lung and liver cancers while minimizing harm to nearby healthy tissue.

Leptin action in the brain linked to sepsis survival
The hormone leptin, typically associated with body weight regulation, works within the central nervous system to aid the immune system's defense against sepsis, researchers say.

Satellites, DNA and dolphins
Using DNA samples and images from Earth-orbiting satellites, conservationists from Columbia University, the Wildlife Conservation Society, the American Museum of Natural History, and Fundacion AquaMarina, are gathering new insights about the franciscana -- a poorly known coastal dolphin species of eastern South America -- in an effort to understand populations and conserve them.

A roadmap for 'the only practical way to preserve the planet'
The United States could completely stop emissions of carbon dioxide from coal-fired electric power plants -- a crucial step for controlling global warming -- within 20 years by using technology that already exists or could be commercially available within a decade.

Vitamin E effective for 'silent' liver disease
Vitamin E has been shown effective in treating nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH), an obesity-associated chronic liver disease that can lead to cirrhosis, liver cancer, and death.

Oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico nears the coast
In this latest image acquired by ESA's Envisat on Thursday at 16:23 UTC, oil from the massive spill in the Gulf of Mexico can be seen as a dark blue swirl advancing toward the Louisiana coast. 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