Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

December 27, 2010
Mechanisms of juvenile hormone action in insects could help fine tune pesticides
Virginia Tech researchers have discovered an important step in the activation of juvenile hormone target genes.

Team overcomes major obstacles to cellulosic biofuel production
A newly engineered yeast strain can simultaneously consume two types of sugar from plants to produce ethanol, researchers report.

Not all infant formulas are alike: Differential effects on weight gain
New findings from the Monell Center reveal that weight gain of formula-fed infants is influenced by the type of formula the infant is consuming.

ASPB applauds passage of America COMPETES reauthorization
The American Society of Plant Biologists applauds Congressional reauthorization of the America COMPETES Act.

Structure of key molecule in immune system provides clues for designing drugs
A research team has deciphered a key step in an evolutionarily old branch of the immune response.

When the black hole was born
A team of astronomers from Tel Aviv University, including professor Hagai Netzer and his research student Benny Trakhtenbrot, have determined that the era of first fast growth of the most massive black holes occurred when the universe was only about 1.2 billion years old -- not two to four billion years old, as was previously believed -- and they're growing at a very fast rate.

GOES-13 satellite captures powerful snowmaker leaving New England
Snows are finally winding down in New England today, Dec.

Comprehensive report on sudden oak death
Synthesizing more than 10 years of cooperative research on the exotic invasive, quarantine sudden oak death pathogen, the USDA Forest Service's Pacific Southwest Research Station recently published

Human protein improves muscle function of muscular dystrophy mice
Now headed toward human trials, biglycan significantly slows the weakening of muscles in mice with the genetic mutation that causes muscular dystrophy.

Full woodland strawberry genome sequenced
Weizmann Institute's contribution to the woodland strawberry genome includes the genes for aroma and flavor.

Newborns with low vitamin D levels at increased risk for respiratory infections
The vitamin D levels of newborn babies appear to predict their risk of respiratory infections during infancy and the occurrence of wheezing during early childhood, but not the risk of developing asthma.

Researchers: Pay more attention to epilepsy
Epilepsy, a common and serious neurologic disorder that affects millions of people, is not getting the public attention and funding for research it deserves, according to an editorial on a study published in the Jan.

Broken glass yields clues to climate change
A new study finds that microscopic particles of dust, emitted into the atmosphere when dirt breaks apart, follow similar fragment patterns as broken glass and other brittle objects.

Standardized protocols would greatly enhance clinical and research potential of BTMs
An expert working group of the International Osteoporosis Foundation and the International Federation of Clinical Chemistry and Laboratory Medicine has released a new position paper which reviews the evidence of bone turnover markers (BTMs) in fracture risk prediction and monitoring of osteoporosis therapy.

Parents' social problems affect their children -- even in birds
A recent study performed by Floriane Guibert and Cecilia Houdelier at the CNRS-Université de Rennes 1 in France, together with researchers at the INRA in Nouzilly, France and with Austrian scientists including Erich Mostl of the University of Veterinary Medicine, Vienna, has revealed that the social environment of mother quails has a direct influence on the growth and the behavior of their young.
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