Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

March 21, 2011
Time lived with obesity linked with mortality
Monash University researchers have found the number of years individuals live with obesity is directly associated with the risk of mortality.

The Pacific oyster is in Sweden to stay
The Pacific oyster was discovered in large numbers along the west coast of Sweden in 2007.

NASA infrared satellite imagery shows Cyclone Cherono dwindling
Three days of NASA infrared satellite imagery provides a clear picture to forecasters of the effect wind shear has had on former Cyclone Cherono.

Study shows polypill to be safe and accepted by physicians and patients in developing countries
A new study done by researchers at Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center provides evidence that a CVD polypill may be a viable option for developing countries, where CVD is strongly emerging and the demand for cost-effective, low maintenance treatment is high.

Traffic accidents linked to increased risk of chronic widespread pain
Individuals with poorer health or psychological issues may be prone to developing chronic widespread pain following a traumatic event.

Energy, security, superconductivity and more at the largest physics meeting of the year
Press conferences at the 2011 March Meeting of the American Physical Society will feature research on super tough and stretchy materials, devices to aid in homeland security, new economic and social models, barbecue, bucking broncos and cutting-edge medical advances.

Algorithm for exterior defibrillators that correctly both adult and child arrhythmias
Ventricular fibrillation is a series of intense and disordered contractions of the ventricles (they are located in the lower part of the heart).

Spacebound bacteria inspire earthbound remedies
Recent research aboard the Space Shuttle is giving scientists a better understanding of how infectious disease occurs in space and could someday improve astronaut health and provide novel treatments for people on Earth.

K-State research channels powerful Kansas wind to keep electricity running
A team of Kansas State University engineers is researching ways to use Kansas wind and other distributed energy sources to avoid cascading failures and prevent major power outrages.

Study shows Native Americans modified American landscape years prior to arrival of Europeans
A new study by Baylor University geology researchers shows that Native Americans' land use nearly a century ago produced a widespread impact on the eastern North American landscape and floodplain development several hundred years prior to the arrival of major European settlements.

The rules of violence among young people
Fights between adolescents are subject to a host of subtle and informal rules.

Could mutant flies give epilepsy sufferers greater peace of mind?
A new NIH grant will allow biologist Robert Reenan the opportunity to study the genetics of epilepsy using an unusual method.

Changes in taste function related to obesity and chronic ear inflammation
Children with chronic inflammation of the middle ear can experience changes in their sense of taste, and these changes may be related to childhood obesity, according to a report in the March issue of Archives of Otolaryngology -- Head & Neck Surgery, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

Biofilm reorganization: Back to the theoretical drawing board
In a surprising new study, researchers using image-analysis methods similar to those employed in facial-recognition software have made a startling discovery that rules out the two main theories scientists had created to explain how bacteria self-organize into multicellular aggregate mounds.

2011 Annual Meeting of the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology
Scientists supported by NIAID are among those presenting their latest research findings at the AAAAI Annual Meeting.

Stress affects the balance of bacteria in the gut and immune response
Stress can change the balance of bacteria that naturally live in the gut, according to research published this month in the journal Brain, Behavior, and Immunity.

Experts examine problems and advances in blood supply safety and screening
A symposium at the New York Academy of Sciences on March 29 will reveal recent advances in the testing and screening of the blood supply, diagnose the current problems, and explore future efforts to maximize the safety of this vital resource.

Scientists grow personalized collections of intestinal microbes
Scientists at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis have shown they can grow and manipulate personalized collections of human intestinal microbes in the laboratory and pluck out particular microbes of interest.

One fish, two fish ... reef fish
Scientists from the University of Miami and NOAA Fisheries Service have created a framework that increases the effectiveness of critical reef monitoring techniques.

Periocular treatment improves eye comfort and quality of life for patients with facial paralysis
Patients with facial paralysis who underwent surgical treatment for a condition that leaves them unable to completely close their eyes reported improvement in comfort around the eyes and overall quality of life, according to a report in the March issue of Archives of Facial Plastic Surgery, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

Princeton engineers make breakthrough in ultra-sensitive sensor technology
Princeton researchers have invented an extremely sensitive sensor that opens up new ways to detect a wide range of substances, from tell-tale signs of cancer to hidden explosives.

Computerized systems reduce psychiatric drug errors
Coupling an electronic prescription drug ordering system with a computerized method for reporting adverse events can dramatically reduce the number of medication errors in a hospital's psychiatric unit, suggests new Johns Hopkins research.

How the lily blooms
Mathematics has revealed that differential growth and ruffling at the edges of each petal -- not in the midrib, as commonly suggested -- provide the driving force behind the blooming of the lily.

Quality standards for widely used medicines strengthened
The US Pharmacopeial Convention is working with the Food and Drug Administration and the Consumer Healthcare Products Association to update quality standards for widely used medicines and ingredients.

Study suggests alternative treatment for bacteria in oysters
A joint study between local oyster growers and researchers at the Virginia Institute of Marine Science shows that moving farmed oysters into saltier waters just prior to harvest nearly eliminates the presence of a bacterium that can sicken humans.

Trauma patients protected from worse outcomes associated with so-called 'weekend effect'
Patients who've been hurt in car or bike crashes, been shot or stabbed, or suffered other injuries are more likely to live if they arrive at the hospital on the weekend than during the week, according to new University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine research published in the March 21 issue of Archives of Surgery.

Deciphering developmental disorders
A new UK study will provide better diagnoses for children with developmental disorders caused by changes in their genetic makeup.

New statement offers advice on treating dangerous, deep blood clots
More than 250,000 Americans are hospitalized yearly because of blood clots that form in veins deep inside the body.

Children of women who smoked during pregnancy at increased risk of becoming smokers
New research has revealed that prenatal exposure to nicotine increases the vulnerability to nicotine self-administration in adolescent mice.

Beetle explorers name new species for Roosevelt
A new species of a rugged and dashing darkling beetle was named in honor of Theodore Roosevelt on the 100th anniversary of a speech he gave at Tempe Normal School, now Arizona State University.

Teenagers, parents and teachers unaware of social networking risks
A report into the legal risks associated with the use of social networking sites (eg.

Melanoma diagnosis in women associated with higher socioeconomic status
The incidence of melanoma appears higher in non-Hispanic white adolescent girls and young women living in higher socioeconomic neighborhoods than those living in lower socioeconomic areas, according to a report posted online today that will appear in the July print issue of Archives of Dermatology, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

New research shows Transcendental Meditation improves standardized academic achievement
The Transcendental Meditation technique may be an effective approach to improve academic achievement in low-performing students, according to a new study published in the journal Education.

Tips from the journals of the American Society for Microbiology
The following articles appear in upcoming issues ASM journals:

Huge ocean 'Frisbees' spin off Brazil's coast
Current rings have been known to exist off northeastern coast of Brazil for decades, but knowledge of their basic properties such as size, speed, depth, and rotation velocity has been limited.

MU researchers use motion sensors to determine equine lameness
The most common ailment to affect a horse is lameness.

Philippine Foundation awarded grant for innovative bone health awareness program
The Osteoporosis Society of the Philippines Foundation Inc (OSPFI) was awarded the first IOF-Anlene Nutrition Awareness for Bone Health Campaign Grant at a presentation ceremony that took place at the IOF World Wide Conference of Osteoporosis Patient Societies in Valencia, Spain on March 20, 2011.

Capitalizing on corruption: Not all companies harmed by corruption
According to a new study from the Journal of Management Studies, corruption, which is endemic in many countries, can benefit the performance of some companies

University of Oklahoma professor awarded Fulbright fellowship to research water quality
Jason Julian, assistant professor in the OU Department of Geography and Environmental Sustainability, will travel to New Zealand in early 2012 to begin research on his project, titled

Feeling angry? Say a prayer and the wrath fades away
Saying a prayer may help many people feel less angry and behave less aggressively after someone has left them fuming, new research suggests.

Allergy vaccine is nothing to sneeze at
Monash University researchers are working on a vaccine that could completely cure asthma brought on by house dust mite allergies.

Program highlights how to foster entrepreneurship in engineering, research community
One lesson learned in North Carolina State University's Engineering Entrepreneurs Program (EEP): technical knowledge is not enough, if you want to be successful.

MU researcher works to save one of the world's most endangered birds
The entire population of the TTuamotu Kingfisher -- less than 125 -- lives on one tiny island in the south Pacific, and without serious intervention, these birds will no longer exist.

Ancient trash heaps gave rise to Everglades tree islands
Garbage mounds left by prehistoric humans might have driven the formation of many of the Florida Everglades' tree islands, distinctive havens of exceptional ecological richness in the sprawling marsh that are today threatened by human development.

Combination ACE inhibitor therapy increases risk of kidney failure and death
Elderly patients prescribed combination angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitors and angiotensin receptor blockers had a higher risk of kidney failure and death, according to a study published in Canadian Medical Association Journal.

New treatment may desensitize kids with milk allergies, say researchers at Stanford and Boston
Milk allergy is the most common, affecting 2.5 percent of children under age 3.

Health information technology 'control tower' could improve earthquake response
A new study published by researchers at Weill Cornell Medical College and the University of California, Davis, foresees improvements in patient outcomes after a major earthquake through more effective use of information technology.

Breakthrough in Niemann-Pick Type C research reported by Notre Dame and Cornell scientists
A paper by University of Notre Dame and Cornell scientists appearing in this week's edition of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences announces how use of a histone deacetylase inhibitor corrects the damage done by the genetic disorder Niewmann-Pick Type C and allowed once-diseased cells to function normally.

Critical thinking: How do children learn who to trust?
A UT Dallas researcher is examining how children evaluate information to solve problems and learn how to think critically, with the aim of combating misleading advertising aimed at young people.

Climate change hits home
Direct experience of extreme weather events increases concern about climate change and willingness to engage in energy-saving behavior, according to a new research paper published in the first edition of the journal Nature Climate Change this week.

Surprising results in the first genome sequencing of a crustacean
There are many different kinds of crustaceans, ranging from the shellfish Swedish people eat at traditional crayfish parties every August to tiny relatives found in their millions in both freshwater and saltwater.

Newborn hearing screenings do not appear to identify all children at risk for hearing loss
Although universal newborn hearing screening programs appear to identify children with hearing loss at a younger age, nearly one-third of pediatric cochlear implant recipients pass newborn screening only to be diagnosed later in infancy or early childhood, according to a report in the March issue of Archives of Otolaryngology -- Head & Neck Surgery, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

Study suggests gastric banding associated with relatively poor long-term outcomes
In a study of 82 patients who were evaluated 12 or more years after undergoing laparoscopic adjustable gastric banding for morbid obesity, a majority of patients reported that they were satisfied with the procedure, although approximately 40 percent experienced major complications and nearly half required removal of their bands, according to a report posted online that will appear in the July print issue of Archives of Surgery, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

Medically underserved girls receive less frequent evaluation for short stature
Primary care doctors are less likely to refer short girls than short boys for diagnostic testing that can reveal underlying medical reasons for their short stature, according to a new study of an urban pediatric population in Philadelphia.

Fault-finding coral reefs can predict the site of coming earthquakes
Professor Zvi Ben-Avraham and Gal Hartman of Tel Aviv University are surveying

Unknown animals nearly invisible but yet there
Bryozoans (moss animals) are a group of aquatic invertebrates that are found in great variety throughout the world, with well over 100 species in Sweden alone.

When it comes to the environment, education affects our actions
The more highly educated are more likely to display their environmental credentials through what they buy rather than with actions such as turning off lights, according to findings from Understanding Society, the world's largest household panel survey, funded by the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) and managed by the Institute of Social and Economic Research (ISER) at the University of Essex.

The importance of clarifying language in mathematics education
The way in which teachers and textbooks use language and different metaphors in mathematics education determines how pupils develop their number sense.

DSF Charitable Foundation gives $3.9M to CMU's Center or Nucleic Acids Science & Technology
The DSF Charitable Foundation has given a $3.9 million grant to Carnegie Mellon University's Center for Nucleic Acids Science and Technology to further the development of novel biomedical tools targeted at monitoring and manipulating gene expression.

Stem cells may show promise for people with rapidly progressing MS
A long term study reports about the effectiveness of replacing bone marrow, purposely destroyed by chemotherapy, with autologous (self) stem cell rescue for people with aggressive forms of multiple sclerosis (MS).

Chicken soup for the soul: Comfort food fights loneliness
Mashed potatoes, macaroni and cheese, meatloaf ... they may be bad for your arteries, but according to an upcoming study in Psychological Science, a journal of the Association for Psychological Science, they're good for your heart and emotions.

Adolescent brood of women who drank during first trimester more prone to develop conduct disorder
Alcohol use during pregnancy is common and is associated with significant threats to the health and development of exposed offspring.

Study examines whether lower blood pressure reduces kidney disease progression
Georgia Health Sciences University is enrolling patients in a federally funded study to determine if a lower blood pressure reduces the progression of kidney disease.

A dose of safflower oil each day might help keep heart disease at bay
A daily dose of safflower oil, a common cooking oil, for 16 weeks can improve such health measures as good cholesterol, blood sugar, insulin sensitivity and inflammation in obese postmenopausal women who have Type 2 diabetes, according to new research.

Men fuel rebound in plastic surgery
Women have always been willing to do what it takes to look good.

New technique could help solve mystery of vanishing bees
Ecologists have developed a better way of rearing bee larvae in the laboratory that could help discover why honey bee populations worldwide are declining.

MARC Travel Awards announced for GSA 26th Fungal Genetics Meeting
FASEB MARC (Minority Access to Research Careers) Program has announced the travel award recipients for the 2011 Genetics Society of America (GSA) 26th Fungal Genetics meeting in Pacific Grove, CA from March 15-20, 2011.

European guidelines for HIV tropism testing
This review in the Lancet Infectious Diseases presents much-needed guidelines from the European Consensus Group on the clinical management of tropism testing.

Webb sunshield like an umbrella on the shores of the universe
The James Webb Space Telescope has a unique shield to protect its sensitive instruments from the heat and light of the sun.

The informant: a jumping gene
Scientists at EMBL Heidelberg have developed a new method for studying gene regulation, by employing a jumping gene as an informant.

Seeing in stereo: Engineers invent lens for 3-D microscope
Engineers at Ohio State University have invented a lens that enables microscopic objects to be seen from nine different angles at once to create a 3-D image.

Open-source software designed to minimize synthetic biology risks
A software package designed to minimize the potential risks of synthetic biology for the nation's defense and security is now available to the gene synthesis industry and synthetic biology community in an open-source format.

Salk scientists crack molecular code regulating neuronal excitability
A key question in protein biochemistry is how proteins recognize
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