Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

July 27, 2010
Mapping of neglected tropical diseases critical to control and elimination efforts
To take full advantage of recent increased financial commitments from some governments, international agencies, and philanthropies, accurate and up-to-date mapping of neglected tropical diseases (NTDs) needs to be implemented to help improve the precision of decision-making in NTD control and elimination, says a new editorial,

CTC screening for colorectal cancer not cost-effective when reimbursed at same rate as colonoscopy
Computed tomographic colonography, also known as virtual colonoscopy, is not cost-effective if reimbursed at the same rate as colonoscopy, according to a study published online July 27 in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute.

Few people are doing it, so why should I? Motivating men to seek cancer screening
In Germany, several national health campaigns promote cancer screening by announcing that only one in five German men gets screened.

Springer to publish Demography
The Population Association of America has signed an agreement with Springer to publish its official journal Demography as of 2011.

Delirium in older patients associated with greater risk of death, dementia and institutionalization
A review and analysis of previous research indicates that delirium in elderly patients is associated with an increased risk of death, dementia, and institutionalization, independent of age, co-existing illnesses or illness severity, according to a study in the July 28 issue of JAMA.

2 catalysts are better than 1
Much like two children in the back seat of a car, it can be challenging to get two catalysts to cooperate for the greater good.

Study examines hospital complication rates of bariatric surgery
An examination of hospital complication rates of bariatric surgery for more than 15,000 patients in Michigan finds that the frequency of serious complications is relatively low and is inversely associated with hospital and surgeon procedural volume, according to a study in the July 28 issue of JAMA.

Sensing wind speed with kites
UK researchers report in the journal Review of Scientific Instruments have developed a way to use a kite itself to measure wind speed.

Ben-Gurion University of the Negev researchers identify risks of hypertension in young adults
According to the study published in Hypertension, the American Heart Association journal, the research team assessed how teenage boys and girls with normal blood pressure might progress into becoming young adults with hypertension.

Background music can impair performance, cites new study
For decades research has shown that listening to music alleviates anxiety and depression, enhances mood, and can increase cognitive functioning, such as spatial awareness.

American Chemical Society's highest honor goes to pioneer in 'ultraslow-motion' imaging
Ahmed H. Zewail, Ph.D., the 1999 Chemistry Nobel Laureate and the Linus Pauling Professor of Chemistry & Professor of Physics at California Institute of Technology, has been named the winner of the 2011 Priestley Medal by the American Chemical Society.

Reform of primary care could reduce diagnostic errors
Errors in diagnosis place a heavy financial burden on an already costly health-care system, and can be devastating for affected patients.

NYU Langone offers vascular-targeted photodynamic therapy for localized prostate cancer
NYU Langone Medical Center has begun a clinical trial offering vascular-targeted photodynamic therapy to patients with localized prostate cancer.

Engineered coral pigment helps scientists to observe protein movement
Scientists in Southampton, UK, and Ulm and Karlsruhe in Germany have shown that a variant form of a fluorescent protein originally isolated from a reef coral has excellent properties as a marker protein for super-resolution microscopy in live cells.

A hop from South America -- tracking Australian marsupials
Debates have raged for decades about how to arrange the Australian and South American branches of the marsupial family tree.

Data sorting world record falls: Computer scientists break terabyte sort barrier in 60 seconds
Computer scientists from the University of California, San Diego, broke

Can you ask a pig if his glass is half full?
Experts from Newcastle University have shown for the first time that a pig's mood mirrors how content he is, highlighting that pigs are capable of complex emotions which are directly influenced by their living conditions.

Trainee publication highlights success of US-China agricultural injury research training project
As a collaboration of the Colorado Injury Control Research Center, the Center for Injury Research and Policy at Nationwide Children's Hospital and the School of Public Heath, Tongji Medical College at Huazhong University of Science and Technology, the US-China Agricultural Injury Research Training Project was created in 2004.

Nanoblasts from laser-activated nanoparticles move molecules, proteins and DNA into cells
Using chemical

UNC physician authors editorial on cost-effectiveness study for colon cancer screening
Russell Harris, M.D., M.P.H., professor of medicine at UNC and a member of UNC Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center, wrote the editorial in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute.

Late preterm births risk respiratory illness
A team led by UIC researchers report that babies born between 34 weeks and 37 weeks gestation are much more likely to have respiratory illness compared to infants born at full term, and their risk of respiratory illness decreases with each additional week of gestation until 38 weeks.

Native-like spider silk produced in metabolically engineered bacterium
The Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology team led by bio molecular engineering professor Lee Sang-yup have developed a technology to artificially create spider dragline silk proteins that can be used to make ultra-strong synthetic fibres and bulletproof vests.

NEI/FDA to hold 1-day glaucoma endpoints meeting
The National Eye Institute and the US Food and Drug Administration are sponsoring a Glaucoma Endpoints conference on Sept.

63 percent of women report sexual problems with orgasm proving biggest issue in teens and 20s
Almost two-thirds of females attending a general urology practice reported that they suffered from sexual dysfunction.

Fly eye paves the way for manufacturing biomimetic surfaces
Rows of tiny raised blowfly corneas may be the key to easy manufacturing of biomimetic surfaces, surfaces that mimic the properties of biological tissues, according to a team of Penn State researchers.

In the 'neck' of time: Scientists unravel another key evolutionary trait
By deciphering the genetics in humans and fish, scientists now believe that the neck -- that little body part between your head and shoulders -- gave humans so much freedom of movement that it played a surprising and major role in the evolution of the human brain, according to New York University and Cornell University neuroscientists in the online journal Nature Communications.

A new tool for improving switchgrass
Agricultural Research Service scientists have developed a new tool for deciphering the genetics of a native prairie grass being widely studied for its potential as a biofuel.

Adherence to recommended exercise improves physical function, reduces pain for OA patients
Patients with osteoarthritis of the knee or hip who adhere to the recommended home physical therapy exercises and physically active lifestyle experience more improvement in pain, physical function, and self-perceived effect according to a study from researchers in the Netherlands.

A future with or without trees
In a study published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Gillian Galford and her colleagues at the MBL Ecosystems Center, Brown University and Universidade de São Paulo estimate future emissions of carbon dioxide, nitrous oxide and methane in the Brazilian Amazon state of Mato Grosso.

Getting a step ahead of pathogens
A recent article in the journal Chaos examines the possibility of using epistasis to predict the outcome of the evolutionary processes, especially when the evolving units are pathogens such as viruses.

Hurricane study to tackle long-standing mystery
Scientists are launching a major field project next month in the tropical Atlantic Ocean to solve a central mystery of hurricanes: why do certain clusters of tropical thunderstorms grow into the often-deadly storms while many others dissipate?

Where do the drugs go?
Drug delivery inside the body is a complicated process. Compounds travel through a maze of aqueous solutions, lipid membranes, and barriers between the blood and tissues like the brain.

Listeriosis in the developing world may not follow usual pattern
Rogier van Doorn and colleagues from Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, present a Learning Forum article in this week's PLoS Medicine that describes three unusual cases of patients with listerial meningitis.

More accurate than Heisenberg allows?
Quantum cryptography is the safest way to encrypt data. It utilizes the fact that transmitted information can only be measured with a strictly limited degree of precision.

Birth of a hurricane
Summer storms are a regular feature in the North Atlantic, and while most pose little threat to our shores, a choice few become devastating hurricanes.

Early repolarization pattern is associated with cardiac risk among the middle aged
The prevalence of early repolarization pattern among 35- to 54-year-olds is higher than previously thought, and has a clear link to an increased risk of cardiac death, especially among men.

Abusive mothers improve parenting after in-home training, emotional support of therapists
Each year, US child welfare agencies log more than 3 million reports of child abuse and neglect.

Late preterm births associated with increased risk of respiratory illnesses
An analysis of more than 200,000 deliveries finds that compared to infants born at full term, those born between 34 weeks and 37 weeks are more likely to have severe respiratory illness, and this risk decreases with each added week of gestational age during the late preterm period, according to a study in the July 28 issue of JAMA.

Breaching the blood-brain barrier to create powerful new tools for fighting cancer
One of the human body's most powerful defensive tools, the blood-brain barrier is a chemical labyrinth that prevents toxins and viruses in the bloodstream from reaching the brain.

Social relationships are linked to improved survival
Individuals with adequate social relationships have a 50 percent greater likelihood of survival compared to those with poor or insufficient social relationships.

Ben-Gurion U lecturer Etgar Keret awarded prestigious Chevalier medallion
Ben-Gurion University of the Negev lecturer Etgar Keret from the Department of Hebrew Literature has received the Chevalier (Knight) Medallion of France's Order of Arts and Letters.

Potentially hazardous asteroid might collide with the Earth in 2182
The potentially hazardous asteroid, (101955) 1999 RQ36, has a one-in-a-thousand chance of impacting the Earth, and more than half of this probability indicates that this could happen in the year 2182, based on a global study in which Spanish researchers have been involved.

Biomarkers found for postmenopausal cardiovascular disease
Analysis of blood protein data from the Women's Health Initiative cohorts has revealed new biomarkers for stroke and coronary heart disease.

Eddies against the wall
Fluids experts writing in the journal Physics of Fluids, which is published by the American Institute of Physics, are projecting it will be many decades before we can accurately probe the properties of turbulence near walls.

Relationships improve your odds of survival by 50 percent
In the journal PLoS Medicine, BYU professors Julianne Holt-Lunstad and Timothy Smith report that social connections -- friends, family, neighbors or colleagues -- improve our odds of survival by 50 percent.

Smaller hospitals can provide safe and high-quality surgical care comparable to larger counterparts
Smaller, rural hospitals may be quicker and more efficient at implementing surgical safety initiatives than their larger, urban counterparts, and are capable of providing a standard of surgical care that is at par with major hospitals that provide a comprehensive array of care services, according to an 18-month series of studies led by researchers from the University of Louisville Department of Surgery.

Biology, computer science combine efforts to fight cancer
The Cancer Prevention and Research Institute of Texas awarded $2.4 million to the University of Houston to fund promising young cancer researchers working on new multidisciplinary approaches to fighting cancer.

University of Hawaii completes 3-year investigation of military munitions sea disposal site
The University of Hawaii at Manoa's School of Ocean Earth Science and Technology completed a three-year long investigation of Sea Disposal Site Hawaii Number 5, a deep-water military munitions disposal site in US coastal waters approximately 5 miles south of Pearl Harbor, Oahu, Hawaii.

CIHR team grant to fund multidisciplinary breast cancer survivorship studies
Over the next five years, a diverse, multdisciplinary team of researchers led by Dr.

Cheaper substrates made of oxide materials
Imagine building cheaper electronics on a variety of substrates -- materials like plastic, paper or fabric.

Calcium connections: Basic pathway for maintaining cell's fuel stores
Investigators have described a previously unknown biological mechanism in cells that prevents them from cannibalizing themselves for fuel.

The image of immigrants in film and literature does not reflect their social reality in Spain
The artistic representation of immigration as portrayed in cinema and literature has little to do with the sociological reality of this social segment, according to a study by Universidad Carlos III de Madrid researchers who analyze the construction of the popular conception.

Genetic risk score associated with breast cancer risk; predictive of type of disease
Women with higher risk scores that consisted of having certain genetic variants most strongly linked to breast cancer had an associated higher risk of breast cancer, with these scores also highly predictive of estrogen receptor-positive disease, according to a study in the July 28 issue of JAMA.

HIV in maternal and child heath
In our editorial this month the PLoS Medicine editors argue that the time has come to integrate prevention and treatment of HIV into maternal and child health-care programs.

Waste chip fat fuels hydrogen economy
Don't pour that dirty fat from the fryer down the sink -- it could be used to make the fuel of the future.

Hormonal birth control alters scent communication in primates
Hormonal contraceptives change the ways captive ring-tailed lemurs relate to one another both socially and sexually, according to a Duke University study that combined analyses of hormones, genes, scent chemicals and behavior.

The more frequently you log on, the more weight you can keep off
The more people used an interactive weight management website, the more weight loss they maintained, according to a Kaiser Permanente Center for Health Research study published online today in the open access Journal of Medical Internet Research.

Artificially controlling water condensation leads to 'room-temperature ice'
Researchers in Spain have studied the underlying mechanisms of water condensation in the troposphere and found a way to make artificial materials to control water condensation and trigger ice formation at room temperature -- all described in the Journal of Chemical Physics.

Who buys what? Research finds clues to marketing innovation
Introducing innovative new products and ideas to the marketplace can be a tricky proposition.

Symposium to explore broadening partnerships to spur medical advances for war injuries
The USU-HJF Military Medicine Symposium will gather prominent civilian and military researchers and clinicians to discuss current research and identify opportunities to collaborate and share information that could speed treatments to wounded warriors.

Alcohol reduces the severity of rheumatoid arthritis
Drinking alcohol may reduce the severity of rheumatoid arthritis according to new research published on Wednesday in the journal Rheumatology.

Academy scientist honored with top fish award
The Academy of Natural Sciences' top fish scientist has received the Robert H.

Caltech astronomer finds planets in unusually intimate dance around dying star
Caltech astronomer John Johnson and colleagues have found two extrasolar planetary systems with gas giant planets locked in an orbital embrace.

Birds may increase their offspring's survival through infidelity
Why does female infidelity occur so frequently throughout the animal kingdom?

Women in their 40s have lower mammographic tumor detectability
The reduced effectiveness of mammographic screening in women in their 40s is primarily due to lower detectability instead of faster tumor growth rate, according to a study published online July 27 in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute.

Latest 'green' packing material? Mushrooms
A new packing material that grows itself is now appearing in shipped products across the country.

Findings show promise for nuclear fusion test reactors
Researchers have discovered mechanisms critical to interactions between hot plasma and surfaces facing the plasma inside a thermonuclear fusion reactor, part of work aimed at developing coatings capable of withstanding the grueling conditions inside the reactors.

Multifunctional nanoparticle enables new type of biological imaging
By combining a nanoparticle's magnetic and thermal properties, researchers have created a new technique that virtually eliminates the background noise from non-radioactive medical imaging.

Mayo Clinic Center for Innovation to sponsor a collaborative symposium on innovations in health care experience and delivery
The Mayo Clinic Center for Innovation will host Transform 2010 -- Thinking Differently about Health Care, its third collaborative symposium aimed at changing the way health care is experienced and delivered, on Sept.

Use of decision-aid program increases safety for women experiencing abuse, researchers find
Intimate partner violence results in 2 million injuries among women in the US each year, according to the US Department of Health and Human Services.

New book describes career opportunities in clinical research and how to qualify for them
A new book from Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press,

Specific oncogene plays a role in lung squamous cell carcinoma
The identification of an oncogene specific to lung squamous cell carcinoma suggests that genetic activation of this oncogene could be used as an identification marker for this type of lung cancer.

Protein identified that can result in fragile bones
Too little of a protein called neogenin results in a smaller skeleton during development and sets the stage for a more fragile bone framework lifelong, Medical College of Georgia researchers report.

ADHD, conduct disorder and smoking most strongly related to dropping out of high school
Teens with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) -- the most common childhood psychiatric condition in the United States -- are less likely to finish high school on time than students with other mental-health disorders that often are considered more serious, a large national study by researchers at the UC Davis School of Medicine has found. 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