Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

December 14, 2010
A protein called cFLIP makes tumor cells in breast cancer resistant to treatments
This finding might very useful for scientists, that could design cancer therapies aimed at interfering the action of this protein.

Fighter pilots' brains are 'more sensitive'
Cognitive tests and MRI scans have shown significant differences in the brains of fighter pilots when compared to a control group, according to a new study led by scientists from UCL.

Single quantum dot nanowire photodetectors
Moving a step closer toward quantum computing, a research team in the Netherlands recently fabricated a photodetector based on a single nanowire, in which the active element is a single quantum dot with a volume of a mere 7,000 cubic nanometers.

It's time for a new approach to Alzheimer's disease
Karl Herrup thinks that the national research effort to understand Alzheimer's disease has gone about as far as it can go with its current theories.

New combo lung cancer therapy improves survival over single-line treatment
A phase 2 trial combining Syndax Pharmaceuticals' SNDX-275 (entinostat) with erlotinib in non-small cell lung cancer patients with elevated levels of E-cadherin was more effective than using erlotinib alone.

Submerging your feet in alcohol will not get you drunk
Research in the Christmas issue published on today explodes the Danish myth that it is possible to get drunk by submerging your feet in alcohol.

Study identifies genetic mutations associated with tumor of adrenal gland
Analysis has identified variations of a gene that are associated with a type of tumor that forms within the adrenal gland, according a study in the Dec.

Unique orangutan reintroduction project under imminent threat
One of Sumatra's most biodiverse rainforests is under imminent threat from the pulp and paper industry, jeopardizing the only successful project that releases rescued Sumatran orangutans back to the wild.

Geologist's discoveries resolve debate about oxygen in Earth's mantle
While there continues to be considerable debate among geologists about the availability of oxygen in the Earth's mantle, recent discoveries by a University of Rhode Island scientist are bringing resolution to the question.

Mothers' diets have biggest influence on children eating healthy
As health professionals search for ways to combat the rise in obesity and promote healthy eating, new research reveals a mother's own eating habits -- and whether she views her child as a

Anatomy of a shopping spree: Pretty things make us buy more
With the holidays fast approaching and consumers in full shopping mode, new research shows a single luxury item purchase can lead to an unintended shopping spree.

Zebrafish provide new hope for cancer treatment
The imaging of tumor growth in zebrafish has revealed for the first time how newly formed cancer cells have the capacity to co-opt the immune system into spreading the disease, leading the way for investigat ions into potential therapies for eliminating early stage cancer in humans.

Allergy treatment may cause new allergy
Allergic contact dermatitis from aluminium has previously been considered very unusual.

2 people receive kidney transplants in pilot program using CMU software
A man in St. Louis and a woman in New Hampshire have received the first kidney transplants made possible through a new national program of the Organ Procurement and Transplantation Network that uses a Carnegie Mellon University computer algorithm to match transplant candidates with living donors.

Drinking alcohol during a rich meal slows down digestion, but doesn't increase indigestion
People can be reassured that while alcohol may slow down digestion after a rich calorific meal, enjoyed by many during the Christmas season, it will not cause indigestion symptoms such as heartburn, belching and bloating, finds research in the Christmas issue published on today.

Ventilation changes could double number of lungs available for transplant: study
Simple changes to how ventilators are used could almost double the number of lungs available for transplants, according to new international research involving a doctor at St.

Sovereign's head identified after more than 4 centuries
The skeletons of kings and queens lying in mass graves in the Royal Basilica of Saint-Denis in Paris could finally have the solemn funeral ceremonies they deserve, say experts in the Christmas issue published on today.

Maintaining high physical activity level for many years lessens weight gain going into middle age
Young adults, particularly women, who maintained high levels of moderate and vigorous activity over a period of 20 years experienced smaller gains in weight and waist circumference during the transition from young adulthood to middle age, compared to individuals with lower activity levels, according a study in the Dec.

100 percent of most challenging Christmas plastic wrapping could be recycled by new tech
On average we each consume 120 grams of plastic wrapping on Christmas gifts most of which is of a type which is almost impossible to recycle.

First issue of Semantic Web journal published
IOS Press is happy to announce the first issue of the Semantic Web journal has been published.

Biracial and passing -- as black
New research published in the December issue of Social Psychology Quarterly shows that black-white biracial adults now exercise considerable control over how they identify and the authors find

The ethics of biofuels
In the world-wide race to develop energy sources that are seen as

Drug use and discrimination among Phoenix area Mexican heritage youth
Research examines alcohol and drug use among Phoenix area students of Mexican heritage related to discrimination.

A standard successfully tested in 32,000 organizations in the United Kingdom is analyzed
The Investors in People norm was established in the United Kingdom in the 90s.

18.3 million baby boomers could benefit from the Affordable Care Act
18.3 million men and women ages 50 to 64 stand to benefit from provisions in the Affordable Care Act that expand access to affordable health insurance, assure that all health insurance provides a standard comprehensive benefit, prevent insurers from denying coverage or charging higher premiums to people with pre-existing conditions, and eliminate lifetime and annual limits in health insurance policies, according to a new Commonwealth Fund report released today.

Robot arm improves performance of brain-controlled device
The performance of a brain-machine interface designed to help paralyzed subjects move objects with their thoughts is improved with the addition of a robotic arm providing sensory feedback, a new study from the University of Chicago finds.

UA engineering tests underground border security system
A unique underground surveillance system tested by UA researchers could be used to watch the entire US-Mexico border continuously.

Researchers open the door to biological computers
Genetically modified cells can be made to communicate with each other as if they were electronic circuits.

Boston University School of Medicine awarded grants to improve early detection of lung cancer
Researchers from Boston University School of Medicine have been awarded a five-year, $2 million grant from the National Cancer Institute Early Detection Research Network, as well as a four-year, $1.3 million grant from the Department of Defense.

MVI, Merck, NYU collaborate to research potential malaria vaccine
Development of a vaccine to prevent the malaria parasite from entering the human liver is the goal of a new collaboration announced today by global leaders in malaria research and vaccine development.

More than 25 percent of teenagers have suffered cyber bullying in the past year
Cyber bullying is an emerging phenomenon that is becoming increasingly common among teenagers.

Exclusions and power structures in the wake of an open higher education system
In recent decades, Swedish universities and university colleges have become the target of a range of reforms under the banner of openness and flexibility.

Special section on stigma in Perspectives on Psychological Science: Group differences, not deficits
Psychological scientists are faced with the arduous task of identifying distinctions between humans without stigmatizing groups of people based on these differences.

Scientists identify how virus triggers cervical and mouth cancer
University of Manchester scientists have discovered for the first time an important new way in which the human papilloma virus triggers cancer in what could lead to new treatments for cervical and mouth cancer.

Violent games not to blame for youth aggression
How depressed young people are strongly predicts how aggressive and violent they may be or may become.

A positive step in the face of uncertainty
Enormous uncertainty. These two words describe the condition of Phoenix's climate and water supply in the 21st century.

Neonatal intensive care in Mexico is cost effective
Neonatal intensive care provides substantial population health benefits in Mexico relative to its costs, even for very premature babies, and as such offers exceptional value for money within the country's Popular Health Insurance (Seguro Popular) program, which offers free access to a specific set of health care interventions.

Once upon a time in the Intensive Care Unit ...
The first few days after birth is an important time when babies learn to recognize the sound of their parents' voice and the parents in turn bond with their children.

Scripps scientists see the light in bizarre bioluminescent snail
Two scientists at Scripps Institution of Oceanography at UC San Diego have provided the first details about the mysterious flashes of dazzling bioluminescent light produced by a little-known sea snail.

Cancer Research Institute launches Cancer Vaccine Acceleration Fund
Cancer Research Institute Inc., a US nonprofit organization established in 1953 to advance the science of tumor immunology and foster the discovery of new cancer immunotherapies, announced today the launch of the Cancer Vaccine Acceleration Fund, a new model of philanthropic investment and academic-industry collaboration established in partnership with the Ludwig Institute for Cancer Research Ltd. to speed the clinical development of therapeutic cancer vaccines and other immune system-based therapies.

School classrooms, hallways and playgrounds to be intervention points for kids with asthma
Teachers and education support professionals are about to get the information they need to help the growing number of students in America who have childhood asthma -- one of the most common chronic diseases among children.

Rationalization measures are the main cause of poor work environment
Managers in the private and public sectors must consider work environment when rationalizing production to obtain sustainable systems.

Inhaled corticosteroids increase diabetes mellitus risk
Inhaled corticosteroids are widely used in the treatment of asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.

UNH-led experiment hurtled into aurora above Norway by NASA rocket
A team of scientists led by Marc Lessard of the University of New Hampshire Space Science Center launched an instrument-laden, four-stage sounding rocket from Norway's Andoya Rocket Range into aurora about 200 miles above Earth early Sunday morning (Dec.

Researchers discover new signaling pathway linked to inflammatory disease
Scientists at the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine have described for the first time a key inhibitory role for the IL-1 signaling pathway in the human innate immune system, providing novel insights into human inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) and potential new treatments.

New asthma research breaks the mold
Scientists investigating the allergic reactions that asthmatics suffer towards a common mold have discovered that many people with asthma actually had the mold growing in their own lungs.

DFG establishes 4 new research units
The Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft is establishing four new Research Units. The decision was made by the DFG Senate at its December session in Bonn.

Alcohol consumption may increase amphetamine abuse
New research at the University of Kentucky Medical Center indicates that consuming a moderate amount of alcohol (more than seven drinks a week) increases an individual's risk of developing amphetamine abuse.

Environmental pharmaceutical contamination removed by Octolig
Because of their properties and the magnitude of their production and use, pharmaceuticals can represent a serious disposal problem.

Marine biotech industry could grow by 12 percent per year
Europe can become a global leader in marine biotechnology within 10 years, according to a new report from the Marine Board of the European Science Foundation.

Antibiotic selection pressure and macrolide resistance in nasopharyngeal Streptococcus pneumoniae
Also in the next PLoS Medicine are papers about a cluster-randomized clinical trial in Ethiopia and the association between nuclear receptor expression and clinical outcomes in lung cancer patients.

Study finds prayer can help handle harmful emotions
Those who choose to pray find personalized comfort during hard times, according to a University of Wisconsin-Madison sociologist.

The key to being attractive (and looking healthy)? A good night's sleep
If you want to look attractive and healthy, the best thing you can do is get a good night's sleep, finds research in the Christmas issue published on today.

IBEX makes first images of magnetotail structures, dynamic interactions occurring in space
NASA's Interstellar Boundary Explorer (IBEX) spacecraft, designed to image the invisible interactions occurring at the edge of the solar system, captured images of magnetospheric structures and a dynamic event occurring in the magnetosphere as the spacecraft observed from near lunar distance.

The AVE pollutes 29 percent less than traditional trains
High-speed trains consume 29 percent less energy than conventional trains per passenger transported, and reduce CO2 emissions by the same proportion.

Fast food and sweets advertised when children watch television
Children in Sweden are exposed to a huge number of TV advertisements.

Hubble spots a celestial bauble
Hubble has spotted a festive bauble of gas in our neighbouring galaxy, the Large Magellanic Cloud.

Research leads to fewer yellowjackets on Christmas trees
Hawaiians can now worry less about finding stray yellowjackets living in their Christmas trees shipped from the mainland United States, partly due to research by a US Department of Agriculture scientist and his university and state cooperators.

Vaccine boosts your immune system
Researchers at BRIC, the University of Copenhagen, have discovered for the first time a protein normally found in the body that can act to prevent chronic tissue inflammation.

Voices of late medieval peasant women and men heard again after 500 years of silence
When people belonging to peasant communities in late medieval Sweden prayed to God they usually stood up and put their palms together.

Y-90 radioembolization offers promise for late-stage liver cancer
The latest weapon against inoperable liver cancer is so tiny that it takes millions of them per treatment, but according to interventional radiologists at the Indiana University School of Medicine, those microscopic spheres really pack a therapeutic punch.

Researchers discover compound with potent effects on the biological clock
Using automated screening techniques developed by pharmaceutical companies to find new drugs, researchers from UC San Diego and three other research institutions have discovered a molecule with the most potent effects ever seen on the biological clock.

Optical water quality assessment
Scientists at the US Geological Survey have proven that measuring fluorescence could improve source water monitoring during a study of the McKenzie River in Oregon.

The effects of spirituality in Alcoholics Anonymous on alcohol dependence
Research from the Center for Addiction Medicine at the Massachusetts General Hospital has shown a large association between the increase of meetings of Alcoholics Anonymous an individual attends, an increase in spirituality and a decrease in alcohol use.

Gene information predicts survival time, possible new treatment options for lung-cancer patients
Researchers at UT Southwestern Medical Center have discovered sets of genes active in cancer cells and normal tissue that predict survival time and potential new treatments for patients with non-small cell lung cancer.

Champion hydrogen-producing microbe
The cyanobacteria are famous for releasing the oxygen that made the Earth a hospitable planet but some strains also have a hidden talent for producing hydrogen gas, a potential biofuel.

Iridium memories
One of the rarest metals on Earth may be an excellent option for enabling future flash memory chips to continue increasing in speed and density, according to a group of researchers in Taiwan, who describe incorporating nanocrystals of iridium into critical components of flash memory in the journal Applied Physics Letters.

Unique case study on Alzheimer's disease
A case study from the Swedish medical university Karolinska Institutet sheds light on the pathological course of Alzheimer's disease.

PTB president receives the Grand Cross of Merit
Professor Dr. Ernst Otto Goebel, President of the Physikalisch-Technische Bundesanstalt, has been awarded the Grand Cross of Merit of the Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany.

UCI researchers find novel memory-enhancing mechanism in brain
UC Irvine researchers have identified a novel mechanism in the brain that boosts memory.

Attempting to predict epileptic seizure
While the causes of epileptic seizures continue to confound brain researchers, scientists have been exploring how changes in the coordinated activity of brain networks, monitored through electrodes, might help predict impending seizures.

HEA funding for student study
A fifth-year student at the Peninsula Medical School has successfully applied for funding from the Higher Education Academy in order to carry out a study regarding medical students and the information resources they use.

Tiny channels carry big information
Berkeley Lab researchers have been able to fabricate nanochannels that are only two nanometers in size, using standard semiconductor manufacturing processes.

Swedes happier than before
Swedes are both happy and content with their lives, reveals a report from the SOM Institute at the University of Gothenburg, Sweden.

Tackling the erosion of a special river island
Locke Island is a small island in a bend of the Columbia River in eastern Washington that plays a special role in the culture of local Indian tribes.

The sweetness of biodegradable plastics
Prof. Moshe Kol of Tel Aviv University says that his new lactide-based variety of catalysts, which initiate or sustain reactions in chemical processes, is improving the production of

Joint Mathematics Meetings in New Orleans Jan. 6-9
Over 6000 mathematicians will attend the annual meetings of the American Mathematical Society and Mathematical Association of America at the New Orleans Marriott and Sheraton New Orleans January 6-9.

High activity staves off pounds, especially for women
People will gain significantly less weight by middle age -- especially women -- if they engage in moderate to vigorous activity nearly every day of the week starting as young adults.

Use of methods to protect lungs after brain death increases number of lungs suitable for donation
Use of certain measures for lung preservation after brain death in potential organ donors resulted in a nearly doubling of lungs eligible for donation, compared to a conventional strategy that is used, according to preliminary research published in the Dec.

1 tale told is 2 tails gained
Arizona State University professor Kenro Kusumi, with Anolis lizard tail in hand, may hold the most likely key to unlock the secrets of medically applicable regeneration.

Fighting flu in newborns begins in pregnancy
A three-year study by Yale School of Medicine researchers has found that vaccinating pregnant women against influenza is over 90 percent effective in preventing their infants from being hospitalized with influenza in the first six months of life.

Qatar-led international team finds its first alien world
In an exciting example of international collaboration, a Qatar astronomer teamed with scientists at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics and other institutions to discover a new alien world.

Walkable neighborhoods richer in social capital, UNH study finds
Living in an area where amenities of daily life -- groceries, playgrounds, post offices, libraries and restaurants -- are within walking distance is linked to higher levels of social capital, new research finds.

New survey device gets better information on teenage sexual behavior
Brown University sociologists have developed a low-cost, easy-to-use device that is helping researchers in Ethiopia obtain more reliable answers when they ask teenagers about stigmatized sexual behaviors.

UT researcher finds power and corruption may be good for society
Francisco Úbeda, an evolutionary biology professor at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, and Edgar Duéñez of Harvard University found that power and corruption may play a role in maintaining overall societal cooperation.

Momentum for minority participation and retention in science and engineering
Employment in science, technology, engineering or mathematics provides economic security and significant opportunities for advancement.

Compound derived from curry spice is neuroprotective against stroke and traumatic brain injury
A synthetic derivative of the curry spice turmeric, made by scientists at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies, dramatically improves the behavioral and molecular deficits seen in animal models of ischemic stroke and traumatic brain injury.

CSHL scientists identify elusive neuronal targets of deep brain stimulation
Deep brain stimulation of a brain area that controls complex behaviors has proven to be effective against several therapeutically stubborn neurological and neuropsychiatric disorders.

Go ahead, drink your milk
A study to be published in the January edition of American Journal of Clinical Nutrition reveals that drinking three glasses of milk per day may lead to an 18 percent decreased risk of cardiovascular disease.

Study finds prayer can help handle harmful emotions
Those who choose to pray find personalized comfort during hard times, according to a University of Wisconsin-Madison sociologist.

Deficits in number processing in children with ADHD and alcohol exposure: Similar but different
Children with fetal alcohol exposure often exhibit similar symptoms to those with ADHD, but new research out of the Wayne State University School of Medicine indicates that they actually occur in completely different areas within the brain.

What 'pine' cones reveal about the evolution of flowers
New research published this week provides new insights into their genetic origin, an evolutionary innovation that quickly gave rise to many diverse flowering plants more than 130 million years ago.

Cell of origin for brain tumors may predict response to therapy
For patients with glioma, the most common primary brain tumor, new findings may explain why current therapies fail to eradicate the cancer.

Study shows post-9/11 security zones blight landscape
New study says post-9/11

Transcription factor clears protein clumps in Huntington's mice models
Over expressing a transcription factor that promotes increase in number of mitochondria greatly improves neurological function of transgenic mice models for Huntington's disease.

Fire Technology paper wins Lloyd's Science of Risk Prize
A paper on tunnel fires modeling published in Springer's journal Fire Technology has won this year's Lloyd's Science of Risk Prize in the Technology Category.

Enhanced brain-machine interface taps into additional senses
Monkeys moved thought-controlled computer cursors more quickly and accurately when provided with additional sensory feedback, according to a new study in the Dec.

The effects of Alcoholics Anonymous on women returning from prison
New research from the Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University has shown that when recently released women from prison attend at least one Alcoholics Anonymous meeting a week there was a significant decrease in alcohol-related consequences and overall drinking.

Human umbilical cord blood cells found to enhance survival and maturation of key brain cells
In vitro studies examining the activity of human umbilical cord blood cells (HUCB) on experimental animal models of central nervous system aging, injury and disease, have shown that HUCBs provide a

Making wafers faster by making features smaller
Manufacturing semiconductors for electronics involves etching small features onto wafers using lasers, a process that is limited by the wavelength of the light itself.

Marketing for top-level research made in Germany
Four major German research and funding organizations have developed a joint marketing strategy to increase the international visibility of their country's top-level research.

High-tech software, umanned planes allow scientists to keep tabs on Arctic seals
A novel project using cameras mounted on unmanned aircraft flying over the Arctic is serving double duty by assessing the characteristics of declining sea ice and using the same aerial photos to pinpoint seals that have hauled up on ice floes.

People who believe in justice also see a victim's life as more meaningful after tragedy
Seeing bad things happen to other people is scary. One way to respond to this is to blame the victim -- to look for some reason why it happened to them.

Handling holiday shipping peaks through robot-human cooperation
Scientists from the Technische Universitaet Muenchen, together with partners from academia and industry, will investigate in a European research project how robots can help workers pack large TV sets.

New vaccine to assist worldwide eradication of polio
Scientists at the University of Leeds, UK, are joining the global fight to eradicate polio by developing a new type of vaccine that can trick the body to develop immunity against the disease.

Expensive wait for hip replacements
Patients who suffer from anxiety and depression are more likely to report worse results after a hip replacement. 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