Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

June 24, 2010
Despite the guidelines, lower blood pressure might be unhealthy for kidney patients
Recent guidelines by the National Kidney Foundation Disease Outcomes Quality Initiative (NKF KDOQI) call for lower target blood pressure levels in patients with chronic kidney disease.

Ecological change in the abyss -- the Amperima event
Even in the dark abyss of the deep ocean animal communities can undergo rapid, widespread and radical changes.

TWAS awarded Premio Feltrinelli
The Accademia Nazionale dei Lincei (Rome) announces today that TWAS has received the prestigious Premio Feltrinelli for helping to build scientific capacity in the developing world.

System that controls sleep may be same for most mammals
In a novel mathematical model that reproduces sleep patterns for multiple species, an international team of researchers has demonstrated that the neural circuitry that controls the sleep/wake cycle in humans may also control the sleep patterns of 17 different mammalian species.

NASA infrared imagery hinted Darby would become a hurricane
Infrared imagery provides forecasters with a look at the temperature of cloud tops in tropical cyclones, sea surface and land surface temperatures and more.

Tiny clays curb big earthquakes
California's San Andreas fault is notorious for repeatedly generating major earthquakes and for being on the brink of producing the next

'Jumping genes' find new homes in humans more often than previously thought
Transposons, or

Virus-plus-susceptibility gene combo triggers disease
Mice that carry a gene variant earlier linked to the inflammatory bowel disorder known as Crohn's disease only succumb to symptoms if they've also been infected by a common virus, according to a study reported in the June 25 issue of the journal Cell, a Cell Press publication.

Cardiac MRI in the ER cuts costs, hospital admissions for chest pain patients
A new study done by researchers at Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center indicates that chest pain may no longer have to mean a hospital stay -- there is another option for diagnosing heart-related chest pain that costs less and, in some cases, allows the patient to return home the same day.

New strategy urgently needed to tackle diabetes in sub-Saharan Africa
Diabetes and its complications are becoming a major burden in sub-Saharan Africa, and prevalence is set to double by 2030.

Team led by LA BioMed scientist develops novel approach to study neurological disorders
A team led by a LA BioMed researcher developed a novel approach to efficiently identify disease relevant genes in human complex neurological disorders and demonstrated the effectiveness of this method by applying it to amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, or Lou Gehrig's disease.

New diabetes drug acts independently of insulin, improves blood glucose control and lowers body weight
A new drug for type 2 diabetes -- dapagliflozin -- acts independently of insulin, improves blood sugar control and lowers body weight.

Polarized arguments about breast screening are not helping women, warns expert
Polarised arguments about the benefits and harms of breast screening are not helping women to make an informed decision, argues a senior doctor on today.

Lord Brain Memorial Lecture is launched in recognizing outstanding contribution to neuroscience
Andrew Lees, professor of neurology at University College London, is to be the first ever recipient of the Lord Brain Memorial Medal -- awarded for the scientific contributions he has made to the field of movement disorders within the UK.

Hydrophobic proteins: Potential biomarkers for colorectal cancer
Colorectal cancer is a leading cause of death worldwide. Hydrophobic proteins are a class of proteins that are involved in many cellular functions in the body.

What affects the gastrointestinal symptoms in peritoneal dialysis patients?
Gastrointestinal symptoms are common in peritoneal dialysis patients. A research group in China investigated the gastrointestinal symptoms in peritoneal dialysis patients and explored the related factors.

Agriculture's next revolution -- perennial grain -- within sight
Earth-friendly perennial grain crops, which grow with less fertilizer, herbicide, fuel and erosion than grains planted annually, could be available in two decades, according to researchers writing in the current issue of the journal Science.

Announcing the 1st IOF-ESCEO Pre-Clinical Symposium
The International Osteoporosis Foundation is pleased to announce the inaugural IOF-ESCEO Pre-Clinical Symposium -- a new forum for the best pre-clinical and translational science in bone biology to be held from March 22-23, 2011, immediately preceding the European Congress on Osteoporosis and Osteoarthritis in Valencia (March 23-26, 2011).

Link between iron overload and macular degeneration under study
The most common -- and under-diagnosed -- genetic disease in humans just may be a cause of the worst form of macular degeneration, MCG researchers report.

Josiah Macy Jr. Foundation grant to enhance physician and nursing education
Case Western Reserve University's proposed student-run Saturday Free Clinic will provide training for future doctors and nurses to learn to work as health-care partners.

Virus works with gene to cause Crohn's-like illness
Scientists have shown that a specific virus can interact with a mutation in the host's genes to trigger disease.

New impact factor of European Urology underlines journal's outstanding position
European Urology, the official journal of the European Association of Urology, has a newly released impact factor of 7,667.

Scientists question EPA estimates of greenhouse gas emissions
An interdisciplinary team of scientists from the University of Missouri evaluated the EPA and IPCC approach to estimate greenhouse emissions from anaerobic lagoons.

10 years on, Wellcome Trust launches study of 10,000 human genomes in UK
On the 10th anniversary of the completion of the first draft of the human genome -- a draft which had taken ten years to complete -- the Wellcome Trust today launches a project to decode the genomes of 10,000 people over the next three years.

New study aims to promote animal welfare
A new study at the University of Leicester aims to promote animal welfare in Cyprus and the UK.

Curbing speculation could destabilize commodity prices, study says
Price spikes for gasoline, grain and other commodities could be magnified if lawmakers curb speculative trading in futures markets, according to a new study released today in conjunction with this weekend's G20 summit.

A new therapeutic intervention for patients with pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma
A research team from China investigated the expression of toll-like receptor (TLR) 4, nuclear factor-kB (NF-kB) p65 and hypoxiainducible transcription factor 1a (HIF-1a) in pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC) and their clinical significance.

Sea ice in the Arctic does not recover
A critical minimum for Arctic sea ice can also be expected for late summer 2010.

Improved telescope sees through atmosphere with pinpoint sharpness
A sharp view of the starry sky is difficult, because the atmosphere constantly distorts the image.

Texas A&M researcher explains how embryo fights retroviral infection
Some viruses insert themselves into the host's DNA during infection in a process called retroviral integration, causing several diseases, including AIDS and cancer, notes a Texas A&M researcher who specializes in fetal diseases.

Pre-meal technosphere inhaled insulin plus once daily insulin glargine leads to similar blood sugar control and less weight gain than twice daily premixed biaspart insulin
For patients with type 2 diabetes, inhaled insulin before each meal plus insulin glargine before bedtime is as effective at controlling blood sugar as conventional twice daily premixed biaspart insulin therapy, and leads to less weight gain and less hypoglycemia.

Scientists create 3-D models of whole mouse organs
Yale University engineers have for the first time created 3-D models of whole intact mouse organs, a feat they accomplished using fluorescence microscopy.

Higher cancer rates found in liver transplant patients receiving cyclosporine for immunosuppression
Researchers at Erasmus MC University Medical Centre in the Netherlands found that cyclosporine treatment is a significant risk factor for the development of de novo cancer in liver transplant patients.

Genetics in bloom
Some of the molecular machinery that governs flower formation has been uncovered in the daisy-like Gerbera plants.

Do bosons ever masquerade as fermions?
The world of elementary particles is divided between bosons, such as photons, and fermions, including electrons and neutrinos.

Nna proteins play role in catastrophic neuron death in mice, flies -- and perhaps people
A team of researchers, led by scientists at the University of California, San Diego, have identified a key player in the dramatic loss of neurons in mice and fly models, a discovery that could help illuminate the role of mitochondrial dysfunction in human neurodegenerative disorders, such as Parkinson's disease.

The Twilight Saga: MU researchers release book on Twilight
As fans eagerly await the Twilight Saga: Eclipse set for release on June 30, University of Missouri communication experts have published a scholarly book on Twilight,

Rape in war 'a deliberate military strategy' argue researchers
Since the second world war, the use of rape as a weapon of war has assumed strategic importance, and is now a deliberate military strategy, argue researchers in an editorial published on today.

Connecting the dots: How light receptors get their message across
For a plant, light is life. It drives everything from photosynthesis to growth and reproduction.

New UM School of Medicine study finds more variation in human genome than expected
Scientists are finding more variation in the human genome than they had expected, according to a new study from the University of Maryland School of Medicine.

Off-the-shelf cancer detection
Using an off-the-shelf digital camera, Rice University biomedical engineers and researchers from the University of Texas M.D.

Biomedical scientist concerned about effects of oil spill on human health
A URI biomedical researcher says that some of the same chemicals found in diesel fumes and cigarette smoke are also found in the tar balls produced as a result of the oil spill, and he is worried about the effect they will have on the health of clean-up workers and wildlife.

MIT chemists find an easier way to synthesize new drug candidates
MIT chemists have designed a new way to attach a trifluoromethyl group to certain compounds, which they believe could allow pharmaceutical companies to create and test new drugs much faster and potentially reduce the cost of drug discovery.

Industry fishing for profits, not predators
People who fish for a living pursue top profits, not necessarily top predators, according to global catch and economic data from the last 55 years.

$10 million grant to fund math research center at UD
The Institute of Education Sciences, a research branch of the US Department of Education, has awarded a $10 million grant to University of Delaware Prof.

Seeing the science in our surroundings
School pupils from Nottingham have become pioneer scientists as part of a research project aimed at designing an innovative approach to learning.

Brief psychological therapy is effective in primary care
Brief therapy at the GP's surgery can effectively treat anxiety and depression.

Climate change complicates plant diseases of the future
Human-driven changes in the earth's atmospheric composition are likely to alter plant diseases of the future.

Behavior breakthrough: Like animals, plants demonstrate complex ability to integrate information
A University of Alberta research team has discovered that a plant's strategy to capture nutrients in the soil is the result of integration of different types of information.

Yale scientists implant regenerated lung tissue in rats
A Yale University-led team of scientists reports that it has achieved an important first step in regenerating fully functional lung tissue that can exchange gas, which is the key role of the lungs.

VIVO utilizing Scopus custom data
Elsevier, a world-leading publisher of scientific, technical and medical information products and services, announced today that VIVO has begun a pilot project to evaluate the process by which Scopus Custom Data can be used to populate institutional VIVO instances.

ARS, industry cooperation yields device to detect insects in stored wheat
A laboratory milling device for improving stored grain management has been developed by Agricultural Research Service scientists and an industry cooperator.

A future strategy for the treatment of patients with ulcerative colitis
A research team from China focused on the effects of the chemokine stromal cell-derived factor-1 receptor (CXCR4) antagonist AMD3100 on the intestinal epithelial barrier.

Celia now in the Major Leagues: a category three hurricane
Tropically speaking Celia is in the Major Leagues. She's now a Category Three hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson hurricane scale and classified as the Eastern Pacific's first major hurricane.

Left or right? Early clues to soccer penalty kicks revealed at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute
In the split second before foot meets ball, a soccer player's body betrays whether a penalty kick will go left or right, according to recent research in cognitive science at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.

Antihypertensive drugs may protect against Alzheimer's disease
Researchers at Mount Sinai School of Medicine have found that the drug carvedilol, currently prescribed for the treatment of hypertension, may lessen the degenerative impact of Alzheimer's disease and promote healthy memory functions.

Hallmark Alzheimer's disease changes found in retinas of humans and imaged in live animals
Cedars-Sinai scientists have discovered characteristic amyloid plaques in retinas from Alzheimer's disease patients and used a noninvasive optical imaging technique to detect retinal plaques in live laboratory mice, suggesting the possibility of early noninvasive diagnosis of Alzheimer's disease.

The usefulness of shear wave velocity in managing nonalcoholic steatohepatitis
A research team from Japan investigated whether a noninvasive measurement of tissue strain has a potential usefulness for management of nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH).

Endoscopic findings of cytomegalovirus gastritis
A research team from Japan clarified the endoscopic and clinical findings of cytomegalovirus (CMV) gastritis after allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (allo-SCT).

UD prof helps discover new chemical method important to drug design, agrichemicals
University of Delaware scientist Donald Watson is part of a research team that has discovered an easier method for incorporating fluorine into organic molecules, giving chemists an important new tool in developing materials ranging from new medicines to agricultural chemicals.

Breast milk transmits drugs and medicines to the baby
Give up smoking, do not drink more than three cups of coffee per day, do not take any kind of drug, or if you do, take it as long as possible before feeding your baby.

Dealing with the public health humiliation of the type 2 diabetes epidemic
The lead editorial in this week's American Diabetes Association meeting special issue of the Lancet describes the global type 2 diabetes epidemic as a public health humiliation.

Optimal surgical procedure for duodenal gastrointestinal stromal tumors
Duodenal gastrointestinal stromal tumors are rare primary duodenal tumors, and there are few guidelines to help the clinician with their surgical management.

Is it safe for endoscopic piecemeal mucosal resection in treating large sessile colorectal polyps?
Endoscopic removal of colonic adenomatous polyps is a commonly used technique that reduces the incidence of colorectal cancer.

Brown team finds widespread glacial meltwater valleys on Mars
A research team led by Brown University has documented dozens of channels carved by melted water from glaciers located in the midlatitude region of Mars.

Diabetes doubles risk of heart attack and strokes: The disease is now responsible for 1 in 10 cardiovascular deaths
New research indicates that having diabetes approximately doubles the risk of developing a wide range of blood vessel diseases, including heart attacks and different types of stroke.

Novel radiotracer shines new light on the brains of Alzheimer's disease patients
A trial of a novel radioactive compound readily and safely distinguished the brains of Alzheimer's disease patients from healthy volunteers on brain scans and opens the doors to making such imaging available beyond facilities that can manufacture their own radioactive compounds.

Higher wetland methane emissions caused by climate warming 40,000 years ago
40,000 years ago rapid warming led to an increase in methane concentration.

Automated telephone reminders increase colon cancer screenings
Simple, automated telephone reminders can increase colon cancer screening rates by 30 percent, according to a Kaiser Permanente Center for Health Research study funded by the National Cancer Institute that appears in the July print edition of Medical Care.

How the first step affects the (watery) result
In trying to copy the photosynthesis in the laboratory a team of scientists of the Universities of Jena and Erlangen-Nurnberg and of the Institute of Photonic Technology in Jena (Germany) made a huge step forward.

Miami meeting on radiation therapy targets patient safety
A meeting in Miami this week will bring together some of the world's leading experts from inside and outside the clinic to discuss safety in radiation therapy -- a critical method for treating cancer.

Teens and alcohol study: After a few drinks, parenting style kicks in
The teens least prone to heavy drinking had parents who scored high on both accountability and warmth.

ISU researcher develops green, bio-based process for producing fuel additive
A new green, bio-based method for producing a much-used fuel additive and industrial chemical that is currently made from petroleum products has been developed by Iowa State University researcher Thomas Bobik.

New metric predicts language recovery following stroke
A team of researchers led by NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital/Columbia University Medical Center has developed a method to predict post-stroke recovery of language by measuring the initial severity of impairment.

Study confirms benefit of routine, jail-based HIV testing for inmates
Routine, jail-based HIV testing of inmates can successfully identify a substantial proportion of people unknowingly infected with HIV and could play a critical role in preventing the spread of the disease, according to a new report in this week's US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.

How genetic 'chips' could help to understand heart disease
New research at the University of Leicester will use the latest genetic techniques to examine DNA from over 20,000 patients with heart disease.

C-reactive protein measurement in children inflammatory bowel disease patients
A research team from Finland studied whether high-sensitivity C-reactive protein (hs-CRP) measurement can aid the assessment of disease activity and glucocorticoid treatment in paediatric inflammatory bowel disease (IBD).

23andMe novel, Web-based/participant-driven GWAS replicates genetic associations
23andMe Inc., a leading personal genetics company, has published the first data to come out of its novel participant-driven research program in the journal PLoS Genetics which replicates known genetic associations, validating 23andMe's methodology and unleashing more efficient genetic research.

Unintended acceleration study, first committee meeting June 30 and July 1
The National Research Council's Committee on Electronic Vehicle Controls and Unintended Acceleration will hold its first meeting to gather information for a review of past and current industry and government efforts to identify possible sources of sudden acceleration in motor vehicles.

Nematodes vanquish billion dollar pest
Diabrotica virgifera virgifera beetle larvae (known as western corn rootworm) wreak havoc on maize, causing an estimated $1 billion of damage every year to US agriculture.

Pre-emptive pain regimen decreased opioid usage in patients undergoing robotic prostatectomy
Reporting in the journal Urology, researchers at Thomas Jefferson University have found that a pre-emptive multimodal pain regimen that included pregabalin (Lyrica) decreased the use of opioid analgesics in patients undergoing robotic-assisted laparoscopic radical prostatectomy.

Addiction: a loss of plasticity of the brain?
Why is it that only some drug users become addicts?

Was Venus once a habitable planet?
ESA's Venus Express is helping planetary scientists investigate whether Venus once had oceans.

Researchers develop living, breathing human lung-on-a-chip
Researchers at Harvard's Wyss Institute have combined microfabrication techniques from the computer industry with modern tissue engineering techniques, human cells and a plain old vacuum pump to create a living, breathing human lung-on-a-chip.

Pleasing to the eye
In a breeding experiment with Houbara bustards -- a North African bird species with a very distinctive courtship behavior, scientists have concluded that visual stimulation from attractive males of the same species positively affects brooding females, improving offspring growth.

Plant growth hormones: Antagonists cooperate
The two most important growth hormones of plants, so far considered antagonists, also work synergistically.

New 'fix' for cosmic clocks could help uncover ripples in space-time
An international team of scientists including University of British Columbia astronomer Ingrid Stairs has discovered a promising way to fine-tune pulsars into the best precision time-pieces in the universe.

Gene therapy a step closer to mass production
Researchers in Latvia and Finland have synthesized and studied a range of organic compounds able to carry genetic material into individual cells where it can remedy the diseases caused by defective genes.

NSF grant will develop new online hub for biochemistry, molecular biology educators
The National Science Foundation this week awarded a more than $360,000, five-year grant to the American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology to establish a rich, central online resource for educators across the nation.

Impact of information technology on workers' prosperity:
Recent research results published in

Profiling prostate cancer
A large scale genetic analysis of multiple prostate cancer samples, published online by Cell Press on June 24 in the journal Cancer Cell, is providing exciting new insight into the disease and may lead to more effective treatment strategies.

Furthering European research
In a Statement of Intent signed today, the European Commission and the members of EIROforum formalize their desire to maintain and further develop their cooperation, for the benefit of European science.

Stanford study uses genetic approach to manipulate microbes in gut
We are what we eat, but who are

Targeting flight-or-fight hormone response to combat heart failure
Scientists found that two experimental drugs have the potential to restore pumping strength to failing hearts by ensuring adrenalin's ability to drive heartbeat strength is maintained, and not thwarted, as it typically is in heart failure patients.

Soap operas to the rescue of biodiversity
Using television and radio to tell stories about how farmers can grow healthier and more productive rice crops with less pesticides, has been successful in helping Asian rice farmers better conserve biodiversity on their farms.

Sight recovery in mice
Swiss researchers from the Friedrich Miescher Institute, in collaboration with Inserm researchers from CNRS and UPMC in the Institut de la Vision, have just restored sight to mice afflicted with retinitis pigmentosa.

Do spending cuts cost lives?
Radical cuts to social welfare spending to reduce budget deficits could cause not just economic pain but cost lives, warn experts in a study published on today.

Touch: How a hard chair creates a hard heart
Through textures, shapes, weights and temperatures, the sense of touch influences both our thoughts and behavior.

Popular heart drug may be unsafe for some kidney patients
For patients with kidney disease on dialysis, the widely used heart medication digoxin may lead to an increased risk of premature death, according to a study appearing in an upcoming issue of the Journal of the American Society of Nephrology.

Once weekly exenatide for type 2 diabetes is more convenient and induces better blood sugar control and more weight loss, than standard second-line treatment of daily insulin glargine
A once-weekly injection of exenatide to improve blood sugar control in people with type 2 diabetes produces a significant improvement in blood sugar control, as well as inducing a mean weight loss of 2.6 kg per patient.

Texas A&M researchers call for support for parents of children with disabilities
Caring for a child with a disability can be challenging, but many of these challenges are due to a lack of necessary environmental supports, according to a study conducted by researchers at the Texas A&M University Center on Disability and Development.

Researchers at UH work to prevent neurological diseases
Many diseases of brain function, such as epilepsy and schizophrenia, are caused by problems in how neurons communicate with each other.

Mysterious cilium functions as cellular communication hub, Stanford study shows
Researchers at the Stanford University School of Medicine have pinpointed the molecular cause of a rare genetic disease in humans called Bardet-Biedl syndrome, or BBS.

Aerobic exercise safe and effective for rheumatoid arthritis patients
Researchers from the University of Grenoble Medical School in France determined that cardio-respiratory aerobic exercise is safe for patients with stable rheumatoid arthritis.

Moldy homes a serious risk for severe asthma attacks in some
Exposure to high levels of fungus may increase the risk of severe asthma attacks among people with certain chitinase gene variants, according to a study from Harvard Medical School, Harvard Pilgrim Health Care Institute and Brigham and Women's Hospital.

Tactile sensations influence social judgments and decisions
Psychologists report this week in the journal Science that interpersonal interactions can be shaped, profoundly yet unconsciously, by the physical attributes of incidental objects: Resumes reviewed on a heavy clipboard are judged to be more substantive, while a negotiator seated in a soft chair is less likely to drive a hard bargain.

Silencing hepatitis B virus prevent recurrence of liver cancer
Previous studies have shown that antiviral treatment reduces the incidence of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) in patients with chronic hepatitis B.

Neuroscience website wins prestigious Science prize
Because of its effectiveness -- 150 million different files are downloaded from the site each year -- Neuroscience for Kids is being awarded the Science Prize for Online Resources in Education.

Delayed time zero in photoemission
Physicists of the Technische Universitaet Muenchen, the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universitaet Muenchen and the Max-Planck-Institute of Quantum Optics have discovered a time delay when using light pulses to emit electrons from atoms.

American Chemical Society webinar focuses on protecting intellectual property
News media and others interested in the chemical sciences are invited to join the next in a series of American Chemical Society webinars, focusing on protecting intellectual property. 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