Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

August 23, 2010
Math from the heart: Simulating stent design and coating
Using computer models to study the strengths and weaknesses of different stent structures could help manufacturers optimize stent design and help doctors choose the right stents for their patients.

Sign language speakers' hands, mouths operate separately
When people are communicating in sign languages, they also move their mouths.

2010 Julian Cole Lectureship awarded to John King, University of Nottingham
SIAM awards the Julian Cole Lectureship every four years for an outstanding contribution toward the mathematical characterization and solution of a challenging problem in the physical or biological sciences, or in engineering.

Health diagnosis made simpler
ASU researchers have developed and tested instrumentation they say will make disease diagnosis technically simpler, quicker and less costly.

New technology may prolong the life of implanted devices, from pacemakers to chemotherapy ports
By creating a unique system of blood vessels that is engineered to interact with the tissue surrounding an implanted device, the longevity and function of these devices may be better preserved, according to a study led by researchers in the University of Louisville/Jewish Hospital's Cardiovascular Innovation Institute.

Powerful new way to control magnetism
A new way to manipulate magnetic fields with electrical signals could lead to microelectronic advances comparable to those that made high density disk drives possible.

Researchers connect APC protein to autism and mental retardation
A clue to the causes of autism and mental retardation lies in the synapse, the tiny intercellular junction that rapidly transfers information from one neuron to the next.

Rectal cancer rates are rising in young individuals
A new analysis has found that while colon cancer rates have remained steady over the past several decades among people under the age of 40, rectal cancer rates are increasing in this population across races and in both sexes.

Springer and Helmholtz Association sign agreement for open access membership
Following the launch of SpringerOpen (, the Helmholtz Association has signed a new agreement for an open access membership.

Visualizing viruses: new research pinpoints tiny invaders
In the war against infectious disease, identifying the culprit is half the battle.

UCLA study identifies genetic variation linked to lupus in Asian men
UCLA researchers have found that a variation in a gene on the sex chromosome X may enhance an immune response that leads to lupus in men.

Colin B. Macdonald of the University of Oxford receives Richard C. DiPrima Prize
SIAM is pleased to announce professor Colin B. Macdonald as the recipient of the 2010 Richard C.

What the locals ate 10,000 years ago
BYU archaeologists find a Utah site occupied by humans 11,000 years ago.

Polyphenol antioxidants inhibit iron absorption
Health benefits from polyphenol antioxidants -- substances found in many fruits and vegetables -- may come at a cost to some people.

Body clock drugs could ease psychiatric disorders and jet lag
Researchers funded by the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council and the Medical Research Council have successfully used a drug to reset and restart the natural 24 hour body clock of mice in the lab.

Decade-long trial confirms benefts of steroid withdrawal for transplant patients
A University of Cincinnati analysis of 10 years of data from local kidney transplant patients shows that patients removed from a corticosteroid regimen shortly after surgery have better graft survival rates, better survival rates and fewer cardiovascular events than patients kept on the traditional regimen of long-term steroids.

Smithsonian scientists help create first frozen repository for Hawaiian coral
Scientists at the Smithsonian Institution and the Hawaii Institute of Marine Biology have created the first frozen bank for Hawaiian corals in an attempt to protect them from extinction and to preserve their diversity in Hawaii.

Government urges universal flu vaccinations
The flu kills more than 35,000 people in the United States in an average year -- and most of those deaths could be prevented with a simple vaccine.

$240 billion of green photonics by 2021
As more than 400 international experts gather at the University of Southampton today, Monday, Aug.

Embargoed news from Annals of Internal Medicine
Included in this release is information about two articles being published online on Aug.

American Chemical Society National Meeting hosts special event on science policy
With laws, government regulations, and funding priorities continuing to exert a broad impact on science, a group of graduate students at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology is holding a special symposium Aug.

Good vibrations: New atom-scale products on horizon
The generation of an electric field by the compression and expansion of solid materials is known as the piezoelectric effect, and it has a wide range of applications ranging from everyday items such as watches, motion sensors and precise positioning systems.

Regulation of cell proliferation is dependent on nucleocytoplasmic trafficking
Researchers at The Pennsylvania State University College of Medicine, Hershey, Pennsylvania have discovered that the Opioid Growth Factor and its receptor, OGFr, a clinically important system with potent anti-tumor properties, has controlled entry from the cytoplasm to the nucleus.

A new generation of power: Hi-tech rechargeable batteries developed for military
Scientists reported progress today in using a common virus to develop improved materials for high-performance, rechargeable lithium-ion batteries that could be woven into clothing to power portable electronic devices.

HIV virus hides in the brain
Studies of the spinal fluid of patients given anti-HIV drugs have resulted in new findings suggesting that the brain can act as a hiding place for the HIV virus.

Cactus genes connect modern Mexico to its prehistoric past
In prehistoric times farmers across the world domesticated wild plants to create an agricultural revolution.

More research needed on cardiovascular disease in Asian-Americans
Asians are the fastest-growing racial/ethnic group in the US, but data on cardiovascular disease is lacking.

200-fold boost in fuel cell efficiency advances 'personalized energy systems'
The era of personalized energy systems -- in which individual homes and small businesses produce their own energy for heating, cooling and powering cars -- took another step toward reality today as scientists reported discovery of a powerful new catalyst that is a key element in such a system.

K-state researchers explore physiological effects of space travel with NASA grant
A team of Kansas State University researchers will launch a project funded by a $1.2 million grant from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration.

Educational pioneer BioEYES goes Down Under
The innovative, educational, outreach program BioEYES has now been adopted by the University of Melbourne and the Australian Regenerative Medicine Institute.

15 new US patents awarded this past year to NJIT researchers
NJIT researchers were awarded 15 new US patents this past year, increasing the total number of issued patents for NJIT to 97.

FSU to partner in national research center focused on commercial space flight
The Florida State University will play a key role in a world-class consortium assembled by the Federal Aviation Administration that joins academia, industry and government to address the present and future challenges of commercial space transportation.

Lifting the veil of secrecy surrounding development of new medicines
An unlikely effort is underway to lift the veil of nearly total secrecy that has surrounded the process of developing new prescription drugs for the last century, scientists said today at the 240th National Meeting of the American Chemical Society.

A cluster bomb for cancer care
Dr. Dan Peer and Professor Ramona Margolit of Tel Aviv University have developed a nano-sized vehicle that can deliver chemotherapy drugs directly into cancer cells while avoiding interaction with healthy cells.

New evidence on how cranberry juice fights bacteria that cause urinary tract infections
Scientists today reported new scientific evidence on the effectiveness of that old folk remedy -- cranberry juice -- for urinary tract infections, at the 240th National Meeting of the American Chemical Society, being held here this week.

AgriLife research identifies wheat streak resistance gene
A microscopic look into the genes of a Colorado wheat variety has allowed Texas AgriLife Research scientists to identify a wheat streak mosaic virus-resistance gene.

Thesis investigates characteristics of society using sports activities as research tool
Society gives sense to sport, and sports are a reflection of the traits of a society.

Gold Standard/Elsevier promotes medication safety and compliance via New MEDcounselor languages
Gold Standard/Elsevier, a leading developer of drug information and medication management solutions, announced today the launch of MEDcounselor Languages, a module that provides trusted MEDcounselor consumer medication information in 12 foreign languages.

Munich researchers demonstrate rocking movement in the anti-stress protein Hsp90
The protein Hsp90 plays a significant role in the survival of cells that are exposed to stress.

Researchers gain focus on a bug with bifocals
The research indicates that their natural bifocals work differently than the ones we get by prescription.

New study: More than 20,000 sledding injuries each year
Although sledding is a popular winter pastime, it can unfortunately lead to serious injury.

Cost of prostate cancer care varies with initial treatment choice
A new analysis has found that short-term and long-term costs of prostate cancer care vary considerably based on which treatment strategy a man initially receives.

Canada needs health-care leadership at federal level
Canada needs a new vision for health at the federal level, writes Dr.

A promising target for developing treatments against Parkinson's disease
Researchers at Johns Hopkins have shown that using specific drugs can protect nerve cells in mice from the lethal effects of Parkinson's disease.

Low bone mineral density common in children and teenagers with inflammatory bowel disease
A thesis from the University of Gothenburg (Sweden) is the first in Scandinavia to study the occurrence of low bone mineral density in children and teenagers with inflammatory bowel disease.

Diabetes can cause a sugar coating that smothers body's immune defences
Research led by the University of Warwick has found that unhealthy glucose levels in patients with diabetes can cause significantly more problems for the body than just the well-known symptoms of the disease.

Alcohol-based hand disinfectants improve business productivity
The placement of alcohol-based hand disinfectants in businesses can reduce illness and absenteeism amongst the work force.

Fermi detects gamma-rays from exploding nova
Using the Large Area Telescope onboard NASA's Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope satellite, astronomers have detected gamma rays from a nova for the first time.

NSU scientists receive BP money to research oil spill's impact
Nova Southeastern University is using part of a $10 million block grant from BP to conduct research on the Gulf oil spill's impact on the marine ecosystem, officials announced this week.

Understanding cancer using the fruit fly
Changes to proteins in a cell underlay many cancers. Rui Martinho at the Instituto Gulbenkian de Ciência, in Portugal, in collaboration with researchers in Ghent (Belgium) and Bergen (Norway) will use the fruit fly to understand exactly how changes to proteins, identified in the test-tube, impact on the way cells divide in a living organism.

Vitamin D found to influence over 200 genes, highlighting links to disease
The extent to which vitamin D deficiency may increase susceptibility to a wide range of diseases is dramatically highlighted in research published today.

World-renowned experts to lead discussion with the chemistry community on climate change
In response to doubts about the causes and potential extent of global climate change, a panel of four climate experts will review the current state of climate science and discuss observed and predicted changes.

Americans using less energy, more renewables
Americans are using less energy overall and making more use of renewable energy resources.

Study offers historic buildings protection from climate change
Some of the nation's most historic buildings and monuments may be better protected from decay in future, following a development by engineers.

Physiotherapy after surgery -- the best solution for shoulder problems
Most patients who receive physiotherapy after surgery experience that pain is reduced by a half within a few months.

Drugging the undruggable: Advances toward next generation of disease fighters
After decades of dreaming the drug developer's impossible dream, scientists finally are reporting progress in making drugs that target the

Sturgeon, paddlefish scientists from North America to meet Aug. 31-Sept. 2 in Montana
More than 120 sturgeon and paddlefish scientists and enthusiasts from throughout North America will meet Aug.

University of Colorado Denver Business School study shows failure better teacher than success
A new study shows organizations learn more from failure than success.

Reshaping the gut microbiome could herald new treatments for bowel diseases
A healthy human body contains at least tenfold more bacteria cells than human cells.

Alcohol intake increases certain types of breast cancer
Alcohol increases the risk of lobular and hormone receptor-positive breast cancer, but not necessarily invasive ductal carcinomas, according to a study published Aug.

New analysis weighs lost trade, costs to control invasive species against economic damages
Bugs, plants, animals and viruses travel the globe, invading new territory and wreaking havoc as they upset the balance of nature, destroy agriculture and damage human health.

Sensor important to understanding root, seedling development
A biosensor utilizing black platinum and carbon nanotubes developed at Purdue University will help give scientists a better understanding of how the plant hormone auxin regulates root growth and seedling establishment.

Disasters especially tough on people with disabilities, mental disorders
Psychologists have analyzed decades of research and found that disaster response strategies should address the needs of the population affected, specifically those with disabilities and mental disorders.

Plants give up some deep secrets of drought resistance
In a study that promises to fill in the fine details of the plant world's blueprint for surviving drought, a team of Wisconsin researchers has identified in living plants the set of proteins that help them withstand water stress.

ORNL scientists help explain graphene mystery
Nanoscale simulations and theoretical research performed at the US Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory are bringing scientists closer to realizing graphene's potential in electronic applications.

Mighty predatory mite and oil sprays may save eggplant production in Micronesia
Many farmers in the region have had their eggplant production stymied by hungry mites, Philippine lady beetles and fruit borers feeding on their crops.

'Legacy of Katrina' report details impact of stalled recovery on mental health status of children
Five years after Hurricane Katrina and the flooding of New Orleans caused the evacuation of 1.5 million Gulf Coast residents, substantial consequences from this prolonged displacement have resulted in widespread mental health issues in children living in the region, and 60 percent of children -- as many as 20,000 -- displaced by Katrina either have serious emotional disorders behavioral issues or are experiencing significant housing instability

Eating berries may activate the brain's natural housekeeper for healthy aging
Scientists today reported the first evidence that eating blueberries, strawberries, and acai berries may help the aging brain stay healthy in a crucial but previously unrecognized way.

Nicotine binding to receptor linked to breast cancer cell growth
When nicotine binds to the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAchR), it is known to promote smoking addiction and may also directly promote the development of breast cancer, according to a study published online Aug.

Vitamin D linked to autoimmune and cancer disease genes, underscoring risks of deficiency
Vitamin D insufficiency is a risk factor for a number of diseases and a growing concern worldwide, as one billion people may be vitamin D deficient.

Less intensive drug schedule as effective as standard treatment for blood cancer in elderly patients, but with fewer side effects
A less intensive bortezomib-based regimen (given once instead of twice per week) followed by maintenance therapy, is as effective as the standard treatment for elderly patients with multiple myeloma, but with fewer serious side effects, and will be a valuable treatment option in these patients, according to an article published online first in the Lancet Oncology.

Clinical trial confirms effectiveness of simple appetite control method
Has the long-sought magic potion in society's

CSR origins earlier than supposed
Although the term was not coined until 1953, new research shows that corporate social responsibility (CSR) can trace its roots to the early years of the 20th century and to the editor of one of America's initial business magazines, the World's Work.

Antibiotic may reduce stroke risk and injury in diabetics
A daily dose of an old antibiotic may help diabetics avoid a stroke or at least minimize its damage, Medical College of Georgia researchers report.

Number of uninsured in California counties grew during recession
A new fact sheet from the UCLA Center for Health Policy Research provides detailed county-by-county estimates of the number of California residents who have lost health insurance during the economic downturn and finds that 37 counties -- from Imperial to Kern to Shasta -- saw uninsured rates increase to nearly one-third of their total non-elderly population (ages 0-64) for all or part of 2009.

Novartis awards 2010 Prizes for Immunology in recognition of outstanding contributions to immunology in medical research
Today, the Novartis 2010 Immunology Prizes were presented at the 16th International Congress of Immunology in Kobe, Japan. 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