Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

September 06, 2010
Scientists shed light on process that shapes illness in later life
Scientists hope to gain insights into a range of age-related ailments, such as dementia, by examining the behavior of proteins thought to trigger the conditions.

Memory problems more common in men?
A new study shows that mild cognitive impairment may affect more men than women.

Study examines association between urban living and psychotic disorders
The association between psychotic disorders and living in urban areas appears to be a reflection of increased social fragmentation present within cities, according to a report in the September issue of Archives of General Psychiatry, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

Researchers define role of CEP290 in maintaining ciliary function
A new study in the Sept. 6 issue of the Journal of Cell Biology helps define the role of an important ciliary protein, CEP290.

Cockroach brains could be rich stores of new antibiotics
Cockroaches could be more of a health benefit than a health hazard according to scientists from the University of Nottingham.

These cells will self-destruct in 5 ... 4 ...
In a recent study, researchers demonstrated that conditional small RNA molecules can effectively kill lab-grown human brain, prostate and bone cancer cells in a mutation-specific manner.

Is organic farming good for wildlife? It depends on the alternative
Even though organic methods may increase farm biodiversity, a combination of conventional farming and protected areas could sometimes be a better way to maintain food production and protect wildlife.

Short nighttime sleep duration among infants, young children associated with obesity in later life
Insufficient amounts of nighttime sleep among infants and preschool-aged children may be a significant risk factor for developing childhood obesity, according to a report in the September issue of Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

What are babies made of? Research shows for some it is sugar, salt and not all things nice
Children as young as four weeks old are being fed a poor diet of biscuits, ice cream and soft drinks, according to new Australian research.

Designing your own workspace improves health, happiness and productivity
Employees who have control over the design and layout of their workspace are not only happier and healthier -- they're also up to 32 percent more productive, according to new research from the University of Exeter.

Carbon mapping breakthrough
By integrating satellite mapping, airborne-laser technology, and ground-based plot surveys, scientists from the Carnegie Institution's Department of Global Ecology, with colleagues, have revealed the first high-resolution maps of carbon locked up in tropical forest vegetation and emitted by land-use practices.

Kaj Blennow's research into M. Alzheimer recognized by the 2010 ECNP Neuropsychopharmacology Award
The European College of Neuropsychopharmacology is pleased to announce Kaj Blennow as the recipient of the 2010 ECNP Neuropsychopharmacology Award in recognition of his original and influential contributions to Alzheimer's disease research.

LA BioMed research finds hallucinogen can safely ease anxiety in advanced-stage cancer patients
In the first human study of its kind to be published in more than 35 years, researchers found psilocybin, an hallucinogen which occurs naturally in

New and unique tool eases the process of finding article reviewers
Elsevier continues to support the peer review process by developing a tool to help journal editors find reviewers.

The brain speaks
In an early step toward letting severely paralyzed people speak with their thoughts, University of Utah researchers translated brain signals into words using two grids of 16 microelectrodes implanted beneath the skull but atop the brain.

Visual pattern preference may be indicator of autism in toddlers
Using eye-tracking methods, researchers at the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine have shown that toddlers with autism spend significantly more time visually examining dynamic geometric patterns than they do looking at social images -- a viewing pattern not found in either typical or developmentally delayed toddlers.

Using buildings for flood protection
Buildings, car parks and roads could, alongside their

Largest ever epigenetics project launched
One of the most ambitious large-scale projects in Human Genetics has been launched today: Epitwin will capture the subtle epigenetic signatures that mark the differences between 5,000 twins on a scale and depth never before attempted, providing key therapeutic targets for the development of drug treatments.

At least 1 in 10 athletes injured during 2010 Winter Olympics
At least one in 10 athletes sustained an injury and a further one in 14 fell ill during the 2010 Winter Olympics, held in Canada, reveals research published in the British Journal of Sports Medicine.

How German palliative care physicians act at the end of life
Discussions about end-of-life practices in Germany have been almost taboo for over half a century, but now intense debate is underway as professional bodies review their guidelines to physicians caring for the dying.

'Intelligent' bed combats pressure sores
Recognition for Empa's spin-off enterprise

Mayo Clinic study finds mild cognitive impairment is more common in men
A new Mayo Clinic study found that the prevalence of mild cognitive impairment was 1.5 times higher in men than in women.

Combining medication and psychosocial treatments may benefit patients with early stage schizophrenia
Patients with early stage schizophrenia who receive a combination of medication and a psychosocial intervention appear less likely to discontinue treatment or relapse -- and may have improved insight, quality of life and social functioning -- than those taking medication alone, according to a report in the September issue of Archives of General Psychiatry, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

Interrupting death messages to treat bone disease
A surface molecule on bacteria that instructs bone cells to die could be the target for new treatments for bone disease, says a scientist speaking at the Society for General Microbiology's autumn meeting today.

Primary care financial incentives cut heart disease deaths and admissions
Financial incentives in primary care cut heart disease deaths and hospital admissions, particularly among people from deprived areas, finds research published online in the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health.

Blood signatures to diagnose infection
Coughing and wheezing patients could someday benefit from quicker, more accurate diagnosis and treatment for respiratory infections such as flu, through a simple blood test, according to scientists.

Insect brains are rich stores of new antibiotics
Cockroaches could be more of a health benefit than a health hazard according to scientists from the University of Nottingham, who have discovered powerful antibiotic properties in the brains of cockroaches and locusts.

Hallucinogen appears safe, may improve mood among patients with advanced-stage cancer and anxiety
A pilot study suggests the hallucinogen psilocybin may be feasible and safe to administer to patients with advanced-stage cancer and anxiety, with promising effects on mood, according to a report published online today that will appear in the January 2011 print issue of Archives of General Psychiatry, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

Embargoed news from Annals of Internal Medicine
This release includes information about three articles being published in the Sept.

Three-quarters of new solar systems worldwide were installed in the EU in 2009
In 2009, newly installed photovoltaic (PV) cells world-wide produced a peak amount of electricity estimated at 7.4 GW, out of which 5.8 GW was located in Europe.

Critically endangered whales flee Russian oil, gas boom
Russian oil and gas company Rosneft is conducting oil and gas exploration work that may have caused the critically endangered western gray whale to flee its main feeding ground.

Compounds in nonstick cookware may be associated with elevated cholesterol in children and teens
Children and teens with higher blood levels of chemicals used in the production of nonstick cookware and waterproof fabrics appear more likely to have elevated total and LDL cholesterol levels, according to a report in the September issue of Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

Backstabbing bacteria: A new treatment for infection?
Selfish bacterial cells that act in their own interests and do not cooperate with their infection-causing colleagues can actually reduce the severity of infection.

Inflammation is associated with lower intelligence and premature death
Inflammation is associated with lower intelligence and premature death, according to Swedish scientists from the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm, Sweden.

With HMGB1's help, cells dine in
Like some people, cells eat when they are under pressure -- but they consume parts of themselves.

BMJ report into top-selling diabetes drug raises concerns about the drug regulatory system
A BMJ investigation into the top-selling diabetes drug rosiglitazone (Avandia) raises concerns about its safety and the whole system by which drugs are evaluated, regulated, and promoted around the world.

Physical environment influences stem cell development
A researcher at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, together with Israeli and foreign collaborators, has revealed how physical qualities -- and not only chemical ones -- may have an influence in determining how adult stem cells from the bone marrow develop into differentiated ones.

Some children with autism show a preference for geometric patterns at an early age
A fixation on geometric patterns may be associated with autism in children as young as 14 months, according to a report published online today that will appear in the January 2011 print issue of Archives of General Psychiatry, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

Parents at highest risk for depression in the 1st year after child's birth
More than one-third of mothers and about one-fifth of fathers in the United Kingdom appear to experience an episode of depression between their child's birth and 12th year of age, with the highest rates in the first year after birth, according to a report posted online today that will appear in the November print issue of Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

Union jobs disappearing at local, state and national levels, UCLA study finds
The recession is finally taking its toll on national, state and local unionization rates, finds UCLA's annual report on organized labor.

Melting rate of ice caps in Greenland and Western Antarctica lower than expected
The Greenland and West Antarctic ice caps are melting at half the speed previously predicted.

Gambling on breast scans
A mathematical tool known as a Monte Carlo analysis could help improve the way X-rays are used for mammography and reduce the number of breast cancers missed by the technique as well as avoiding false positives, according to research published this month in the International Journal of Low Radiation.

U of C scientist offers better ways to engineer Earth's climate to prevent dangerous global warming
Dr. David Keith suggests that two novel geoengineering approaches --

Are white homosexual men still taking too many HIV risks?
Risky sexual behavior among members of a subset of the gay community is still adding to the spread of HIV.
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