Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

June 23, 2010
Dr. Mitola and cognitive radio are featured on Computing Now
Dr. Joseph Mitola III, vice president for the research enterprise at Stevens Institute of Technology, is the subject of a recent article on Computing Now which details the benefits and development of cognitive radio, the intelligent wireless technology coined by Dr.

Exercise trumps creatine in cardiac rehab
Athletes have been enjoying the benefits of creatine supplements to gain stronger muscles since the 1990s, and the supplement has also proven beneficial among other groups.

Birds reduce their heating bills in cold climates
The evolution of bird bills is related to climate, according to latest research by the University of Melbourne, Australia, and Brock University, Canada.

IAS urges donors to maintain commitment to global HIV response ahead of the G8 Summit
In 2005 the international community made an historic commitment to achieve universal access to HIV prevention, treatment and care by 2010 at the Group of Eight (G8) summit in Gleneagles, Scotland.

How likely is misdiagnosis?
How likely is misdiagnosis? A researcher at the University of Leicester is evaluating the accuracy of patient diagnoses.

Summer day camps provide fun; environmental education activities for Humboldt County youth
Arcata and Eureka are offering several week-long camps focused on natural resources themes such as wildlife, forestry, aquatics and fisheries, air and space, and renewable energy.

'Ghost particle' sized up by cosmologists
Cosmologists at UCL are a step closer to determining the mass of the elusive neutrino particle, not by using a giant particle detector, but by gazing up into space.

Institute for Aging Research study says going barefoot in home may contribute to elderly falls
Going barefoot in the home, wearing slippers, or socks with no shoes may contribute falls among the elderly.

IEEE-USA engineering mass media fellow begins reporting on sci-tech at Voice of America
IEEE-USA Engineering Mass Media Fellow Smitha Raghunathan has begun her 10-week media internship preparing news stories on science, engineering and technology in Washington at the Voice of America.

University of Denver neuropsychologist says most concussions deliver 95g's
Head injury expert Kim Gorgens, a neuropsychologist at the University of Denver, says that most concussions deliver 95 g's to the human body upon impact.

Optimizing brachytherapy dose on the same day as the implant can control prostate cancer
Ensuring the optimum radiation dose on the same day as the brachytherapy implant in prostate cancer treatment manages to control the illness in about 95 percent of the cases.

NIST's blast resistance standards keep the boom from the room
Standards for blast resistance among trash receptacles have now been published by the standards development organization ASTM International.

Sleep quality of soldiers with migraine is poor
Some 19 percent of soldiers returning from Iraq have migraine and migraine is suspected in another 17 percent.

Polio outbreak in Tajikistan is cause for alarm
The rapidly growing polio outbreak in Tajikistan raises serious concerns that the disease could spread to other regions in the world, states an editorial in CMAJ (Canadian Medical Association Journal).

Researchers study value of chicken litter in cotton production
Chicken litter is much more valuable as a fertilizer than previously thought, according to an Agricultural Research Service study showing its newfound advantages over conventional fertilizers.

Separation between Neanderthal and Homo sapiens might have occurred 500,000 years earlier
Spanish scientists have analyzed the teeth of almost all species of hominids that have existed during the past 4 million years.

Study demonstrates pine bark naturally reduces hay fever symptoms
An estimated 60 million people in the US are affected by allergic rhinitis, commonly known as hay fever, according to the American Academy of Allergy Asthma and Immunology.

Adverse childhood experiences linked to frequent headache in adults
Children who experience maltreatment such as emotional, physical and sexual abuse are more likely to experience frequent headaches, including chronic migraine, as adults, say scientists presenting data at the American Headache Society's 52nd Annual Scientific Meeting in Los Angeles this week.

High levels of fructose, trans fats lead to significant liver disease, says study
Scientists at Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center have discovered that a diet with high levels of fructose, sucrose and of trans fats not only increases obesity, but also leads to significant fatty liver disease with scar tissue.

Brain stimulation technique boosts language ability in Alzheimer's patients
A brain stimulation technique, known as repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation, boosts the language ability of patients with Alzheimer's disease, suggests preliminary research, published online in the Journal of Neurology, Neurosurgery and Psychiatry.

Solar energy center to be recognized for global work
The Southern California Research Initiative for Solar Energy (SC-RISE) at the University of California, Riverside's Bourns College of Engineering has been recognized as a leading example of international collaboration for sustainable energy by Sister Cities International.

UC San Diego researcher awarded $5.3 million for breast cancer survivorship study
The UCSD School of Medicine has received a $5.3 million grant from the National Cancer Institute to conduct and lead a first-of-its-kind, four-year clinical trial to show the effects of weight loss and increased physical activity on quality of life and on co-existing medical conditions in overweight breast cancer survivors.

Mount Sinai researchers find structural basis for incidence of skin cancers in a genetic disorder
Researchers from Mount Sinai School of Medicine have found why patients with a variant form of xeroderma pigmentosum (XPV), an inherited genetic disorder characterized by extreme sensitivity to the sun, are more susceptible to skin cancers than the general population.

NASA's infrared satellite imagery sees Tropical Storm Darby form quickly
The fifth tropical depression of the Eastern Pacific Ocean hurricane season developed and quickly strengthened into Tropical Storm Darby during the early morning hours of June 23.

Brave brains: Neural mechanisms of courage
A fascinating new study combines snakes with brain imaging in order to uncover neural mechanisms associated with

Parkinson's patients' 'risky behavior' explained
Scientists at UCL (University College London) have explained Parkinson's patients' risky behavior, a rare side effect of standard treatments for the disease.

'Quantum computer' a stage closer with silicon breakthrough, reports Nature journal
The remarkable ability of an electron to exist in two places at once has been controlled in the most common electronic material -- silicon -- for the first time.

Risk factors for venous thromboembolism and pulmonary embolism differ between races
A new study of 1,960 white Americans and 368 black Americans with objectively diagnosed venous thromboembolism showed that, compared to whites, blacks had a significantly higher proportion with pulmonary embolism, including idiopathic PE among black women, and a significantly higher proportion of blacks with VTE were women.

VLT detects first superstorm on exoplanet
Astronomers have measured a superstorm for the first time in the atmosphere of an exoplanet, the well-studied

Studies confirm presence, severity of pollution in national parks
Toxic contamination from pesticides, the burning of fossil fuels, agriculture, industrial operations and other sources are a continuing concern in national parks of the West, two new studies confirm.

Timely technology sees tiny transitions
Scientists can detect the movements of single molecules by using fluorescent tags or by pulling them in delicate force measurements, but only for a few minutes.

High rates of sexually transmitted infections among older swingers
Swingers -- straight couples who regularly swap sexual partners at organized gatherings and clubs and indulge in group sex -- have rates of sexually transmitted infections comparable with those of recognized high risk groups, reveals research published ahead of print in the journal Sexually Transmitted Infections.

Stigma of migraine is significant; worse for those with chronic migraine
Researchers looking for the first time at how migraine sufferers experience the stigmatizing effects of their disease show that chronic migraine sufferers experience worse stigma than episodic migraine sufferers and more than those with other neurological diseases including stroke, epilepsy and MS.

To predict atherosclerosis, follow the disturbed blood flow
A new animal model of atherosclerosis shows that

Swiss media likely to twist positive health messages
Analysis of a series of public health campaigns in the Swiss media has shown that, although the campaign was entirely focused on positive messages, the resulting stories often featured

Nanowires for the electronics and optoelectronics of the future
The tale begins with a feasibility study on the manufacture of colored fluorescing thin films for optical safety applications.

Solving the puzzle of the BK ion channel
A team of scientists at Washington University has discovered that an ion-channel mutation that causes epilepsy may do so by making part of the channel protein stiffer, so that the channel toggles open more easily.

Enterprise PCs work while they sleep -- saving energy and money -- with new software
Personal computers in enterprise environments save energy and money by

New study links 1 in 5 deaths in Bangladesh to arsenic in the drinking water
Between 33 and 77 million people in Bangladesh have been exposed to arsenic in the drinking water -- called

Sound creates light
Researchers at the Physikalisch-Technische Bundesanstalt have found an elegant solution to transmit an optical frequency with extreme precision: they employ fiber Brillouin amplification.

NIST team advances in translating language of nanopores
National Institute of Standards and Technology scientists have moved a step closer to developing the means for a rapid diagnostic blood test that can scan for thousands of disease markers and other chemical indicators of health.

New medical weapons to protect against anthrax attacks
The 2001 anthrax attacks in the United States are fostering development of a new generation of vaccines, antibiotics and other medications to protect people against the potentially deadly bacteria in any future bioterrorist incident.

Traditional neurologic exams inadequate for predicting survival of cardiac arrest patients
Traditional methods for assessing patients after cardiac arrest may be underestimating their chances for survival and good outcomes, according to a new study by University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine researchers now available online in the journal Resuscitation.

Oxidative and nitrosative stress contribute to lupus disease activity
University of Texas Medical Branch researchers have uncovered an association between free radical-mediated reactions and the severity and progression of system lupus erythematosus.

Researchers discover source of essential nutrients for mid-ocean algae
For almost three decades, oceanographers have been puzzled by the ability of microscopic algae to grow in mid-ocean areas where there is very little nitrate, an essential algal nutrient.

The language of RNA decoded: Study reveals new function for pseudogenes and noncoding RNAs
A cancer genetics team from Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center makes a discovery that dramatically increases the known pool of functional genetic information.

Scientists grow new lungs using 'skeletons' of old ones
Tissue engineers' progress toward growing new lungs for transplantation or research has long been frustrated by the problem of coaxing stem cells to develop into the varied cell types that populate different locations in the lung.

Migraine sufferers who experienced childhood abuse have greater risk of cardiovascular disease
Migraine sufferers who experienced abuse and neglect as children have a greater risk of cardiovascular disease including stroke and myocardial infarction among others, say scientists presenting data at the American Headache Society's 52nd Annual Scientific Meeting in Los Angeles this week.

Mechanism explains complications associated with diabetes
New research uncovers a molecular mechanism that links diabetes with an increased risk of cardiovascular problems and sudden cardiac death.

Abnormal brain activity in migraineurs is not restricted to attacks
Typically, migraine is considered to be an episodic disorder with discrete attacks of headache.

Discovery of how coral reefs adapt to global warming could aid reef restoration
Discoveries about tropical coral reefs, to be published on June 23, 2010, are expected to be invaluable in efforts to restore the corals, which are succumbing to bleaching and other diseases at an unprecedented rate as ocean temperatures rise worldwide.

Analyzing food and beverages with magnetic levitation
Scientists are reporting development of a new use for magnetic levitation, or

ACGME task force proposes graduated duty hour and supervision standards
The Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education announces draft standards to update resident work hour limits and to add new requirements for resident supervision and handovers of patient care at the end of a hospital shift.

Informal childcare curbs chances of infants being breastfed
Babies who are looked after by relatives, friends, and neighbors while their mothers are at work, are less likely to be breastfed, suggests research published online in the Archives of Disease in Childhood.

US ranks last among 7 countries on health system performance
Despite having the most expensive health care system, the United States ranks last overall compared to six other industrialized countries -- Australia, Canada, Germany, the Netherlands, New Zealand and the United Kingdom -- on measures of health system performance in five areas: quality, efficiency, access to care, equity and the ability to lead long, healthy, productive lives, according to a new Commonwealth Fund report.

NASA satellites see Hurricane Celia strengthen and open an eye
Hurricane Celia dropped to a Category One hurricane during the late afternoon hours on June 22 and today, June 23, by 11 a.m.

Polio research gives new insight into tackling vaccine-derived poliovirus
A vaccine-derived strain of poliovirus that has spread in recent years is serious but it can be tackled with an existing vaccine, according to a new study published today in the New England Journal of Medicine.

Israel Penn Registry marks 3,000 consults for transplant care providers
An international registry of patient data established in 1968 has reached 3,000 consults from transplantation physicians and care providers across the world.

Selective estrogen targeting to protect the heart and blood vessels
Diseases of the blood vessels and heart, which are known as cardiovascular diseases, are the most common causes of death in the US.

Subchondral bone changes contribute to cartilage damage and loss
A recent study determined that bone area predicted the development of medial (inner side) and lateral (outer side) knee cartilage damage and loss of medial cartilage volume.

REM sleep deprivation plays a role in chronic migraine
Reporting at the American Headache Society's 52nd Annual Scientific Meeting in Los Angeles this week, new research shows that sleep deprivation leads to changes in the levels of key proteins that facilitate events involved in the underlying pathology of migraine.

First preliminary profile of proteins in bed bugs' saliva
With bed bugs reemerging as a nuisance in some parts of the country, scientists are reporting the first preliminary description of the bug's sialome -- the saliva proteins that are the secret to Cimex lectularius' ability to suck blood from its human victims and escape to bite again with risking a lethal slap.

Tool manipulation is represented similarly in the brains of the blind and the sighted
Blind people think about manipulating tools in the same regions of the brain as do people who can see, according to a new study.

Early and aggressive arthritis treatment recommended
Disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs should be used early and aggressively at the first sign of rheumatoid arthritis.

Amniotic membrane used to repair human articular cartilage
Spanish scientists have proposed using human amniotic membrane as a new tool for repairing damaged human articular cartilage, which heals very poorly because of its low capacity for self-repair.

Jetting off without the jet lag
Everyone hates the jet lag that accompanies travel to locations in different time zones.

Depth charge: Using atomic force microscopy to study subsurface structures
Researchers at the National Institute of Standards and Technology have shown that under the right circumstances, surface science instruments such as the AFM can deliver valuable data about sub-surface conditions.

Researchers find key to getting estrogen's benefits without cancer risk
Researchers at UT Southwestern Medical Center have pinpointed a set of biological mechanisms through which estrogen confers its beneficial effects on the cardiovascular system, independent of the hormone's actions on cancer.

Quantum simulations uncoverhydrogen's phase transitions
Hydrogen is the most abundant element in the universe and is a major component of giant planets such as Jupiter and Saturn.

Drug mitigates toxic effects of radiation in mice
In a study published in the Journal of Clinical Investigation, a team led by UNC Lineberger Associate Director for Translational Research Norman Sharpless, M.D., provides a first example of successful radiomitigation in mammals.

Evidence that nanoparticles in sunscreens could be toxic if accidentally eaten
Scientists are reporting that particle size affects the toxicity of zinc oxide, a material widely used in sunscreens.

No more peek-a-boo hospital gowns, no more bottoms up
Patients seeking to conserve privacy and personal dignity -- i.e.

Rice wins $3.7 million for cancer research
The Cancer Prevention and Research Institute of Texas has granted $3.7 million to Rice University researchers to fund an innovative cancer diagnostics program.

New agreement targets food ingredient quality in US, China
Recognizing the importance of ensuring that food ingredients of assured quality are made available to the public, the National Institute of Nutrition and Food Safety-Chinese Center for Diseases Control and Prevention and the US Pharmacopeial Convention today signed a Memorandum of Understanding detailing potential areas of collaboration.

Imaging reveals how brain fails to tune out phantom sounds of tinnitus
About 40 million people in the US today suffer from tinnitus, an irritating and sometimes debilitating auditory disorder in which a person

Knocked of balance by a defect in the cellular process autophagy
New research has identified in mice an essential role for the cellular process known as autophagy in inner ear development and balance sensing.

Preventing cancer, quite naturally
Exciting headlines about the cancer-preventing potential of berries, red wine and other foods are in the news almost every day.

CIMIT announces $3 million in medical research grants
A wide variety of early-stage, health care technology innovation projects in NeuroHealth, Traumatic Stress Disorders, and integrated clinical environments were among those chosen to receive more than $3 million in CIMIT seed grants for FY11.

Ignoring stress leads recovering addicts to more cravings
Recovering addicts who avoid coping with stress succumb easily to substance use cravings, making them more likely to relapse during recovery, according to behavioral researchers.

UCSD researchers receive $2.5 million in new stem cell grants
A pair of University of California San Diego researchers -- Martin Marsala, a specialist in spinal cord trauma and disorders, and Yang Xu, an immunologist -- have been awarded more than $2.5 million in new grants from the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine.

New book reviews research on p53 -- the 'guardian of the genome' -- and its relatives
A new book from Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press,

Underinsured African-American women have worse breast cancer outcomes
Underinsured African-Americans had worse breast cancer survival outcomes than underinsured non-Hispanic whites, according to a study published online June 23 in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute.

Tests help predict falls in Parkinson's disease
A group of tests may help predict which people with Parkinson's disease are more likely to fall, according to a study published in the June 23, 2010, online issue of Neurology, the medical journal of the American Academy of Neurology.

JCI table of contents: June 23, 2010
This release contains summaries, links to PDFs, and contact information for papers to be published June 23, 2010, in the JCI: Jetting off without the jet lag; Selective estrogen targeting to protect the heart and blood vessels; Knocked of balance by a defect in the cellular process autophagy; Uncovering how the antidiabetic drug metformin really works; Overcoming the toxic effects of anticancer radiation therapy; Noninvasive imaging of heart transplant rejection in mice; and others.

WSU researchers find mothers of children with autism pay price in workplace
Mothers of children with autism see their careers disproportionally affected as they confront greater demands on their time, inflexible workplaces and increased medical costs, according to a new study by researchers at Washington State University Vancouver.

Gap in preventive care exists among Latinos, study shows
UCLA Researchers have found that Latinos from Central and South America, and Mexican Latinos, consistently report using preventive health services at a much lower level than Non-Latino Whites and that further, all Latino subgroups are significantly less likely to receive basic preventive tests.

Ear tubes appear safe in children with cochlear implants, UAB researchers say
The new study looked at the impact of ear tubes on patients with cochlear implants, and whether leaving the tubes in place or removing them before implantation made any difference in whether ear, nose and throat physicians had to perform more procedures to reduce infection or improve hearing health.

New method of peptide synthesis makes it easier to create drugs based on natural compounds
A team of Vanderbilt chemists has developed a novel method for chemically synthesizing peptides that promises to lower the cost and increase the availability of drugs based on natural compounds.

Every fifth scientific article now available openly on the internet
Scientific research articles are now more accessible according to a study published today in PLoS ONE.

Media coverage responsible for growth in vaccination rates
Mass media coverage of flu-related topics such as vaccine shortages and delays appears to boost overall vaccination rates and prompt people to get their shots earlier in the flu season. 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