Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

March 04, 2011
Vaccinated children not at higher risk of infections or allergic diseases
May vaccinations put too much strain on or weaken children's immune systems and are therefore harmful?

Tracking forest threats
Alerts from an early warning system developed in part by DOE's Oak Ridge National Laboratory could help protect forests across the US from the threats of insects, disease and wildfire.

Observing Arctic ice-edge plankton blooms from space
Ongoing climate-driven changes to the Arctic sea-ice could have a significant impact on the blooming of tiny planktonic plants (phytoplankton) with important implications for the Arctic ecosystem, according to new research conducted by scientists at the UK's National Oceanography Centre.

Novel mechanism for control of gene expression revealed
Dr. David Levin, professor of molecular and cell biology at Boston University Henry M.

WSU study may lead to greater understanding of human genome regulation
Victoria Meller, Ph.D., associate professor of biological sciences at Wayne State University, received $301,392 from the National Institute of General Medical Sciences of the National Institutes of Health to investigate the role of a type of RNA in the X chromosome dosage compensation of Drosophila, or fruit flies.

Sink or source? A new model to measure organic carbon in surface waters
A new carbon model allows scientists to estimate sources and losses of organic carbon in surface waters in the United States.

BNCT, a new-generation radiation treatment, is effective in advanced head and neck cancer
The years of work done on developing and clinically testing of Boron Neutron Capture Therapy in Helsinki, Finland, are now paying off.

Zooming in on the weapons of Salmonella
Bacteria like salmonellae infect their host cells by needle-shaped extensions which they create in large numbers during an attack.

Supercritical carbon dioxide Brayton Cycle turbines promise giant leap
Sandia National Laboratories researchers are moving into the demonstration phase of a novel gas turbine system for power generation, with the promise that thermal-to-electric conversion efficiency will be increased to as much as 50 percent -- an improvement of 50 percent for nuclear power stations equipped with steam turbines, or a 40 percent improvement for simple gas turbines.

Environmental impact of animal waste
A team of ARS-USDA scientists examined a series of commercial, anaerobic, swine wastewater lagoons in North and South Carolina for genes involved in the nitrogen cycling process.

Racial identity tied to happiness, study finds
Black people who identify more strongly with their racial identity are generally happier, according to a study led by psychology researchers at Michigan State University.

The scars of impacts on Mars
ESA's Mars Express has returned new images of an elongated impact crater in the southern hemisphere of Mars.

Virtual reality can improve design skills in younger generation
Researchers at the University of Missouri are studying ways to integrate technology into design learning, specifically to learn how to teach children design basics.

Boosting protein garbage disposal in brain cells protects mice from Alzheimer's disease
Gene therapy that boosts the ability of brain cells to gobble up toxic proteins prevents development of Alzheimer's disease in mice that are predestined to develop it, report researchers at Georgetown University Medical Center.

Affordability of batteries key to harnessing wind and solar power
In a new report published in the journal Chemical Reviews, PNNL researchers say future batteries used by the energy grid to store power from the wind and the sun must be reliable, durable and safe, but affordability is key to widespread market deployment of these technologies.

Weight-loss surgery successful in treating overweight adolescents
A new study published in the journal Clinical Obesity reveals that bariatric surgery can result in significant weight loss in severely obese adolescents.

Science for Our Nation's Energy Future: Energy Frontier Research Centers Summit & Forum
The first Science for Our Nation's Energy Future: Energy Frontier Research Centers Summit & Forum will be held May 25-27, 2011, in Washington D.C.

Dr. Chin-Teh Sun wins AIAA Chichlow Prize
The American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics Walter J. and Angeline H.

IASLC to help advocacy organizations attend 14th World Conference on Lung Cancer in Amsterdam
Lung and thoracic cancer advocacy organizations are invited to apply for travel awards to send their representatives to the 14th World Conference on Lung Cancer, to be held July 3-7, 2011, in Amsterdam.

Depression and anxiety differentially influence physical symptom reporting
Researchers have for decades hypothesized that negative emotions lead to inflated reports of common physical symptoms, like headaches or an upset stomach.

Breast cancer survivors at higher risk for falls
In a study scheduled for publication in the April issue of the Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, researchers from the Oregon Health & Science University Knight Cancer Institute, Portland, asked post-menopausal breast cancer survivors whether they had fallen in the past year and then tracked their falls over a six-month study period.

Report offers framework for evaluating D.C. school reform efforts, along with first impressions
A new report from the National Research Council offers a framework for evaluating the effects of a 2007 reform law on the District of Columbia's public schools.

Incorporating Internet into education is everyone's responsibility, according to thesis
Educational psychologist Dr. Jon Altuna has carried out a thorough study of the phenomenon of the school 2.0.

Loss of key protein boosts neuron loss in ALS
Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, known as ALS or Lou Gehrig's disease, is a notorious neurodegenerative condition characterized by the progressive deterioration of brain and spinal cord neurons, resulting in the gradual but catastrophic loss of muscle control and ultimately, death.

Resveratrol may be useful tool for reducing body fat
For her thesis, nutrition and obesity research team member at the University of the Basque Country, Arrate Lasa, studied the fat-reducing effect of CLA and resveratrol.

Nature Reviews Cancer article traces possible role of damaged DNA in tumor development
DNA provides the instruction manual for all life forms. Occasionally, instructions are not carried out properly, and bad messages are sent leading to the creation of mutant proteins and possible tumor development.

Stroke patients benefit from family involvement in exercise therapy
Family member involvement in a stroke survivor's daily exercise improved the patient's function and recovery.

Can you predict your mate will cheat by their voice?
When choosing a partner, women believe the lower the man's voice, the more likely he's going to cheat.

New system can warn of tsunamis within minutes
Seismologists have developed a new system that could be used to warn future populations of an impending tsunami only minutes after the initial earthquake.

Patients are willing to undergo multiple tests for new cancer treatments
Cancer patients are willing to undergo many tests to receive advanced experimental treatment in clinical trials, according to a new study by Mayo Clinic, Scottsdale Healthcare and the Translational Genomics Research Institute.

Tried and true recipes
Nuclear reactor technology research dwindled away when nuclear power fell out of favor several decades ago.

Rutgers professor Gyorgy Buzsaki is co-winner of major European 'Brain Prize'
Rutgers Board of Governors Distinguished Professor of Neuroscience, Dr. Gyorgy Buzsaki, has received the Grete Lundbeck European Brain Research Foundation's award,

National Ocean Observing System to see marine animal migration, adaptation strategies
For the first time, data from electronic tags attached to marine animals will be incorporated into the US Integrated Ocean Observing System, a NOAA-led national partnership committed to enhance our ability to collect, deliver, and use ocean information.

New microscope produces dazzling 3-D movies of live cells
Scientists at Janelia Farm have invented a new microscope that uses an exquisitely thin sheet of light -- similar to that used in supermarket bar-code scanners -- to peer inside single living cells.

Some overweight adolescents may be at risk for weak bones
Overweight adolescents already struggling with risk factors such as insulin resistance may need to add weak bones to their list of health concerns, researchers report.

Unique teaching method at UWM earns grant for federal study
Compared to in-person college classes, the online U-Pace program has been shown to increase the performance of most students, while closing the achievement gap for at-risk college students.

OHSU physician explores method to reduce blood-clot risk in trauma patients
Oregon Health & Science University physician received a research grant worth nearly $700,000 from the National Trauma Institute to study a method that could more accurately determine how much blood-clot prevention medication to give critically ill or obese trauma patients.

Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center launches online genetic research tool
Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center has launched the nation's first personalized cancer decision support tool,

Creasing to cratering: Voltage breaks down plastic
A Duke University team has seen for the first time how soft polymers, such as wire insulation, can break down under exposure to electrical current.

The tooth about zinc
From its involvement in a healthy immune system to its role in cell growth, zinc is an essential mineral for the human body.

Vital funding for children's brain tumor research
New research into drugs which could prevent the return of persistent brain tumors in children has won vital funding from two major brain tumor charities.

The better off sleep better
The employed and self-employed enjoy much better sleep than those out of work, according to Understanding Society, the world's largest longitudinal household study.

Medical oncology recognized at EU level to allow free movement of doctors
Medical oncology has been included among the medical specialties covered by Directive 2005/36/EC on the recognition of professional qualifications.

Magnificent views of the lunar surface
In late 2007 the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency placed the Kaguya/Selene spacecraft in orbit around the Moon.

Where are new schizophrenia drugs? Experts convene to explore genetic and epigenetic solutions
A symposium at the New York Academy of Sciences March 9-11 will convene world-leading experts in clinical, translational, and basic neuroscience to address the shortage of new schizophrenia therapies by examining novel, state-of-the-art approaches to developing them.

Virginia Tech researcher seeks to use electrical stimulation to give voice to stroke patients
Alexander Leonessa is developing a small device that could use functional electrical stimulation on the paralyzed vocal folds of stroke patients or others who have lost the ability to talk, or even swallow and breathe properly.

Don't miss March 7 pre-registration deadline for Valencia meetings
March 7 is the pre-registration deadline for the most important European bone meetings of the year, to be held in Valencia, Spain.

Bone-creating protein could improve dental implant success
Using a bone-creating protein to augment the maxillary sinus could improve dental implant success, according to Georgia Health Sciences University researchers.

Human stem cells transformed into key neurons lost in Alzheimer's
Northwestern Medicine researchers for the first time have transformed a human embryonic stem cell into a critical neuron that dies early in Alzheimer's disease and is a major cause of memory loss.

Researchers use human cues to improve computer user-friendliness
Lijun Yin wants computers to understand inputs from humans that go beyond the traditional keyboard and mouse.

Conference on composite materials for structural performance: Towards higher limits
The focus of the 32nd materials conference at Risoe DTU is to increase the strength and durability of composite materials by providing a better understanding of the properties of composite materials, right down to micro scale.

European Commission and EMBL renew cooperation
In a Memorandum of Understanding signed today, the European Commission and the European Molecular Biology Laboratory formalize their desire to maintain and further develop their cooperation.

Simulating gasification
A process called gasification can turn carbonaceous fuels -- coal, petroleum, or biomass -- into syngas, a cleaner-burning fuel mix of carbon monoxide and hydrogen.

Happy hour linked to pub violence
A Cardiff University study has established a link between pub violence and happy hour-style drinking promotions.

Icy behavior
When a Rhode-Island-sized ice chunk separates from Greenland, is the calving due to typical seasonal variations or a long-term warmer world?
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