Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

July 22, 2010
Study describes health effects of occupational exposures in Paducah Gaseous Diffusion Plant workers
A five-year study into the causes of deaths of workers at Paducah Gaseous Diffusion Plant shows significantly lower death rates from all causes and cancer in general when compared to the overall United States population.

Kids could get more whole grains from after-school snacks, University of Minnesota study finds
An after-school snack of graham crackers might be one way to get children to eat more whole grains, a new study from the University of Minnesota shows.

NIH awards National Jewish Health $31 million to lead study of infections associated with eczema
National Jewish Health has received $31 million form the NIH to lead a study of infections associated with eczema.

NASA infrared imagery shows Chanthu weakening after landfall in southeastern China
Tropical Storm Chanthu came ashore in southeastern China and continues to move inland.

Rediscovery: MBL scientists confirm role for mysterious cell component, the nucleolinus
Scientists at the Marine Biological Laboratory in Woods Hole have confirmed the role in cell division of a long-neglected cellular component, the nucleolinus.

Stevens hosts 2010 metro area NEMS/MEMS Workshop
Nanomanufacturing Workshop hosted by Stevens Institute of Technology on July 26 in Hoboken, N.J.

American Chemical Society webinar focuses on federal aid for sustainable manufacturing
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 federal resources that support sustainable manufacturing.

Honorary Fellowship awarded to government Chief Scientific Advisor
Queen Mary, University of London celebrates distinguished government scientist Professor Robert Watson who becomes an Honorary Fellow of the College this week.

GOES-13 sees Tropical Depression 3 form in the Atlantic: Bahamas, Florida under warnings
The GOES-13 satellite has kept an eye on System 97L all week, and it has now developed into a tropical depression.

Family chats can help students learn, especially in richer countries, study shows
Taking the time to talk to your children about current events like the Gulf oil spill -- and using mathematical terms to do so -- can help students develop better reasoning and math skills and perform better in school, according to a study by a University at Buffalo professor.

UT MD Anderson study ties abnormal cells in blood to lung cancer
Circulating abnormal cells detected by fluorescence in situ hybridization increase as the disease progresses.

OHSU Knight Cancer Institute researchers isolate importance of gene in breast cancer prognosis
Oregon Health & Science University Knight Cancer Institute researchers found that the GRB7 gene drives an aggressive form of breast cancer and acts independently of the HER-2 gene, known to be a stimulator of breast cancer growth.

Pounding particles to create Neptune's water in the lab
An international group of physicists have drawn up plans to use the new Facility for Antiprotons and Ion Research in Germany to expose water molecules to heavy ion beams and generate the same level of pressure on the water molecules that they experience within the very inhospitable core of Neptune.

Highest X-ray energy used to probe materials
Scientists for the first time have dived into the effect that an intense X-ray free electron laser (XFEL) has on materials.

Study finds structural brain alterations in patients with irritable bowel syndrome
A large academic study has demonstrated structural changes in specific brain regions in female patients with irritable bowel syndrome, a condition that causes pain and discomfort in the abdomen, along with diarrhea, constipation or both.

NIH-funded study finds early HAART during TB treatment boosts survival rate in co-infected people
A clinical trial in Cambodia has found it possible to prolong the survival of untreated HIV-infected adults with very weak immune systems and newly diagnosed tuberculosis by starting anti-HIV therapy two weeks after beginning TB treatment, rather than waiting eight weeks, as has been standard.

Graphene organic photovoltaics, or, will joggers' t-shirts someday power their cell phones?
A University of Southern California team has produced flexible transparent carbon atom films that the researchers say have great potential for a new breed of solar cells.

Irradiating stem cell niche doubles survival in brain cancer patients
Patients with deadly glioblastomas who received high doses of radiation that hit a portion of the brain that harbors neural stem cells had double the progression-free survival time as patients who had lower doses or no radiation targeting the area, a study from the Radiation Oncology Department at UCLA's Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center has found.

Study links African ancestry to high-risk breast cancer
A new study finds that African ancestry is linked to triple-negative breast cancer, a more aggressive type of cancer that has fewer treatment options.

UM researcher identifies novel treatment for pain in sickle cell disease
A University of Minnesota Medical School research team led by Kalpna Gupta, Ph.D., has discovered that cannibinoids offer a novel approach to ease the chronic and acute pain caused by sickle cell disease.

Regional variation in health-care spending and utilization higher in Medicare than private sector
Researchers investigated whether geographic variations in utilization of health services and spending differed between Medicare and the private sector.

'The Breakup 2.0': A look at how new media is used to end relationships
An Indiana U. professor's new book looks at how people today are using new media to break up with each other and how mediums designed to create connections create all sorts of problems for those trying to disconnect.

Kaiser Permanente demonstrates success of large-scale total joint replacement registry
A total joint replacement registry can enhance patient safety, quality of care, cost-effectiveness and research.

Detector technology could help NASA find Earth-like exoplanets
Rochester Institute of Technology scientist Don Figer is developing detector technology funded by NASA's Technology Development for Exoplanet Missions Program and designed to directly image and characterize exoplanets.

How do cells die? Biophotonic tools reveal real-time dynamics in living color
Apoptosis, programmed cell death, is essential to normal development, healthy immune system function, and cancer prevention.

Circumcising gay men would have limited impact on preventing HIV
Adult circumcision has been proposed as a possible HIV prevention strategy for gay men, but a new study by the University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public Health presented at the XVIII International AIDS Conference suggests it would have a very small effect on reducing HIV incidence in the United States.

Could diabetes be in your bones?
Our bones have much greater influence on the rest of our bodies than they are often given credit for, according to two new studies in the July 23 issue of Cell, a Cell Press publication.

Specific protein may help neurons fix themselves in Parkinson's patients
A Michigan State University researcher is working to uncover how a protein known as parkin may help nerve cells fight off damage from Parkinson's disease, a strategy that could lead to new therapies for the degenerative ailment.

Study suggests link between metabolic disease, bone mass in mice
A new study by Johns Hopkins researchers has found that insulin, the sugar-regulating hormone, is required for normal bone development and that it may provide a link between bone health and metabolic disease, such as diabetes.

Once a delinquent, always a delinquent?
Children who come in conflict with the law early on in life do not necessarily become long-term criminals thereafter.

Extreme archaeology: Divers plumb the mysteries of sacred Maya pools
Steering clear of crocodiles and navigating around massive submerged trees, a team of divers began mapping some of the 25 freshwater pools of Cara Blanca, Belize, which were important to the ancient Maya.

UBC professor credits diversified revenue for success of world's top airports
The latest global survey of airports reveals that nonaeronautical revenue streams can help airports achieve higher efficiency so they can lower aircraft landing fees and attract more aeronautrical business.

U of T researchers find link between childhood physical abuse and heart disease
Childhood physical abuse is associated with significantly elevated rates of heart disease in adulthood, according to new findings by University of Toronto researchers, published in this month's issue of the journal Child Abuse & Neglect.

Study reveals a secret to the success of notorious, disease-causing microbes
A study published in the July 23 issue of Cell identifies the mechanism used by several types of common, virulent microbes to infect plants and cause devastating blights.

Math model of colon inflammation singles out dangerous immune cells
Scientists at the Virginia Bioinformatics Institute at Virginia Tech have constructed a mathematical and computational model of inflammatory bowel disease that allows researchers to simulate the cellular and molecular changes underlying chronic inflammation in humans.

Scientists discover how deadly fungal microbes enter host cells
A research team led by scientists at the Virginia Bioinformatics Institute at Virginia Tech has discovered a fundamental entry mechanism that allows dangerous fungal microbes to infect plants and cause disease.

Premature death less likely than end stage renal disease for African-Americans with kidney disease
Regardless of demographics, African-American patients with hypertensive nephrosclerosis have a higher rate of developing end stage renal disease (ESRD) than dying prematurely, according to a study appearing in an upcoming issue of the Journal of the American Society of Nephrology.

BU computer scientist wins National Science Foundation grant
Boston University Professor Mark Crovella, professor of computer science in the College of Arts & Sciences, has been awarded a $450,000 National Science Foundation grant to study ways of simplifying the graphs that are used to describe and understand complex computer networks.

California team to receive up to $122 million to develop method to produce fuels from sunlight
The US Department of Energy today announced an award of up to $122 million over five years to a multidisciplinary team of scientists to establish an Energy Innovation Hub aimed at developing revolutionary methods to generate fuels directly from sunlight.

NPL training gets national accreditation
The National Physical Laboratory's prestigious measurement training has become a nationally recognized qualification, following accreditation by awarding body EAL.

Resident scientists
Seven Northwestern University graduate students will be

Graphene oxide gets green
Rice scientists have found a way to synthesize graphene oxide in bulk in an environmentally friendly way, eliminating toxic and explosive chemicals from the process.

Not enough hours in the day for endangered apes
A study on the effect of global warming on African ape survival suggests that a warming climate may cause apes to run

ORNL's Buchanan named 2010 American Chemical Society Fellow
Michelle Buchanan, associate laboratory director in physical sciences at Oak Ridge National Laboratory, has been elected to the 2010 class of fellows of the American Chemical Society.

Science article has implications for all rapidly developing fields
A comprehensive study by an intellectual property law expert published in the journal Science may guide global climate change and other scientific policy-makers in developing rules for research data release.

Nanowick at heart of new system to cool 'power electronics'
Researchers have shown that an advanced cooling technology being developed for high-power electronics in military and automotive systems is capable of handling roughly 10 times the heat generated by conventional computer chips.

New Zealand women suffer long delays for abortions
Women in New Zealand wait an average of 25 days to get a termination of pregnancy, from the date of their first visit to the doctor.

For pandas, there is a mountain high enough, there is a valley low enough
Genetic analysis of giant pandas has shown that features of their landscape have a profound effect on the movement of genes within their population.

White House cybersecurity coordinator, DHS officials to speak at IEEE Homeland Security Conference
Howard A. Schmidt, national cybersecurity coordinator, and two DHS officials will be a featured speakers at the 2010 IEEE International Conference on Technologies for Homeland Security in November.

Unique means of animal locomotion reported for first time
Biologists studying caterpillars have reported a unique

Lack of access to evidence-based HIV prevention and care is a fundamental violation of human rights
The appalling lack of access to scientifically proven interventions for key populations at risk -- including sex workers, men who have sex with men and people who use drugs -- and the lagging scale up of simple and inexpensive treatment regimens to prevent vertical transmission of HIV reflect persistent, underlying human rights violations that threaten future progress on AIDS, according to organizers of the XVIII International AIDS Conference taking place in Vienna this week under the theme of Rights Here, Right Now.

Can I buy you a drink? Genetics may determine sensitivity to other people's drinking behavior
Your friend walks into a bar to meet you for happy hour.

3 Georgian leaders sign Vienna Declaration, strengthen call for science-based drug policy
Sandra Roelofs, first lady of Georgia; George Tsereteli, Georgia's deputy chairman of parliament; and Irakli Giorgobiani, Georgia's vice minister of labour, health and social affairs, today signed the Vienna Declaration, the official declaration of AIDS 2010 in Vienna, Austria.

Caterpillars crawl like none other
Most of us have surely seen the slow and gravity-defying crawl of a caterpillar, with that wave of motion that passes over their elongated and flexible bodies.

Final instruments on NASA climate/weather satellite integrated
The last of five instruments slated to fly on the upcoming NPOESS Preparatory Project climate and weather satellite have been successfully integrated, according to NASA officials.

White eyes, foot-wide flowers, maroon plants
With a little cross-breeding and some determination, Dr. Dariusz Malinowski, Texas AgriLife Research plant physiologist and forage agronomist in Vernon, is trying to add more colors to the world of hibiscuses.

Study links more time spent sitting to higher risk of death
A new study from American Cancer Society researchers finds it's not just how much physical activity you get, but how much time you spend sitting that can affect your risk of death.

New global report launched by the International AIDS Society recommends a new paradigm for treating injecting drug users: 'Seek, test, treat and retain'
Against the backdrop of some of the globe's fastest growing HIV epidemics in Eastern Europe and Central Asia, a report launched today at AIDS 2010 in Vienna makes the case for a new model for scaling up treatment and prevention of HIV amongst injecting drug users.

Gut movements in caterpillars inspire soft-body robot design
A Virginia Tech engineer and Tufts biologists have shown that a caterpillar's gut slides forward in advance of the surrounding tissues --

Doctor at Cincinnati Children's receives prestigious NIH MERIT Award
Marc E. Rothenberg, M.D., Ph.D., director of the Division of Allergy and Immunology at Cincinnati Children's, has received an NIH MERIT Award to extend funding of his long-standing investigation into

California team gets up to $122 million for Energy Innovation Hub
As part of a broad effort to achieve breakthrough innovations in energy production, US Deputy Secretary of Energy Daniel Poneman announced an award of up to $122 million over five years to a multidisciplinary team of top scientists to establish an Energy Innovation Hub aimed at developing revolutionary methods to generate fuels directly from sunlight.

Important clue to understanding the pathogenesis of ciliary disorders
A research team led by Dr. Heiko Lickert of Helmholtz Zentrum Muenchen has pinpointed a gene that is essential for the physiologically correct disassembly of cilia.

UBC researcher discovers ancient 'stress hormone' in pre-historic fish
A University of British Columbia zoologist has discovered a new corticosteroid hormone in the sea lamprey, an eel-like fish and one of the earliest vertebrates dating back 500 million years.

Groundbreaking Sandia study ties climate uncertainties to economies of US states
A climate-change study at Sandia National Laboratories that models the near-term effects of declining rainfall in each of the 48 US continental states makes clear the economic toll that could occur unless an appropriate amount of initial investment -- a kind of upfront insurance payment -- is made to forestall much larger economic problems down the road.

Breakdown of bone keeps blood sugar in check, new study finds
Researchers led by Dr. Gerard Karsenty at Columbia University Medical Center have discovered that the skeleton plays an important role in regulating blood sugar and have further illuminated how bone controls this process.

6 researchers to receive prestigious awards from the American Society of Hematology
The American Society of Hematology, the world's largest professional society of blood specialists, will honor six scientists who have made significant contributions to the understanding and treatment of hematologic diseases.

International researchers meet in Singapore to discuss research integrity
Some 350 senior education and research policymakers, leaders of research-funding agencies, university leaders and faculty, researchers, and academic publishers from 58 countries are meeting in Singapore to discuss the key issues of research misconduct policy, responsible conduct of research, education and the promotion of professional responsibility in research.

A blood test for depression?
Blood tests have been extremely important tools aiding doctors in making medical diagnoses and in guiding the treatment of many diseases.

Gene linked to aging also linked to Alzheimer's
MIT biologists report that they have discovered the first link between the amyloid plaques that form in the brains of Alzheimer's patients and a gene previously implicated in the aging process, SIRT1.

Stanford releases open-source camera software
The more researchers, the better. With funding from the National Science Foundation the Stanford

A breakthrough for child survival in the poorest nations and America's cities
A Johns Hopkins University scientist, whose team of researchers recently identified pneumonia, diarrhea, and malaria as the primary causes of death of 6 million of the world's poorest children, today called on leaders in donor and developing nations to take action to address the terrible death toll.

Quantum mechanics not in jeopardy
When waves -- regardless of whether light or sound -- collide, they overlap creating interferences.

Vitamins needed to help celiacs stave off bone disease
Children with celiac disease need to include certain must-have vitamins in their diets to stave off weak bones and osteoporosis, say researchers at the University of Alberta.

Stopping anemia drug may be wiser than reducing dose to normalize hemoglobin levels
Discontinuing the anemia drug epoetin may be more effective than reducing the dose for normalizing potentially dangerous high hemoglobin levels in hemodialysis patients, according to a study appearing in an upcoming issue of the Clinical Journal of the American Society Nephrology.

'Cradle of Hope' earns patent for FSU creators
An alumna of the interior design program and a facilities engineer from the National High Magnetic Field Laboratory at the Florida State University have received a patent for their prototype of a portable cradle perfect for infants in family homeless shelters.

New research: Sugar substitutes help reduce caloric intake without overeating or hunger
A new study published in the August 2010 journal, Appetite, further demonstrates that people who consume low-calorie sweeteners (sugar substitutes) are able to significantly reduce their caloric intake and do not overeat.

SIRT1 gene important for memory
Alleged anti-aging protein important for memory; no benefit seen in mice from boosting natural levels, according to a new study in Journal of Neuroscience.

Misuse of anesthesia could cause hepatitis virus transmission
Hepatitis B virus and hepatitis C virus can be transmitted during intravenous administration of anesthesia.

Key compound of ozone destruction detected
For the first time, KIT scientists have successfully measured in the ozone layer the chlorine compound ClOOCl which plays an important role in stratospheric ozone depletion.

The malicious use of pharmaceuticals: An under-recognized form of child abuse
Child abuse is a serious problem that affects nearly one million children a year in the US.

Customers less tolerant of employee rudeness than incompetence
Rude behavior among employees can negatively affect consumer perceptions -- even when the incivility isn't directed at the customer.

Mother-to-child HIV transmission rate falling, but more can be done
Powerful anti-HIV therapies in the mid-1990s and the establishment of protocols by the CDC to treat pregnant women who are infected, and their babies, have slowed mother-to-child HIV transmission.

Inequalities in mortality in Britain today greater than those during 1930s economic depression
The level of inequalities in premature mortality between different areas of Britain has almost surpassed those seen shortly before the economic crash of 1929 and the economic depression of the 1930s, according to a new study published on today.

Women, but not men, who are exposed to radiation therapy as children much more prone to stillbirths or baby death when attempting to have children
Thanks to advances in medicine, many children and adolescents who were diagnosed with cancer years ago are now surviving to adulthood and wanting to start families themselves.

Researchers find genetic link to children's emotional problems precipitated by bullying
A team of researchers from Duke University and Kings College London have discovered a genetic variation that moderates whether victims of bullying will go on to develop emotional problems. 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