Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

May 07, 2012
Clusters of cooperating tumor-suppressor genes are found in large regions deleted in common cancers
Scientists have amassed evidence implying that commonly occurring large chromosomal deletions seen in many cancer types contain areas harboring multiple functionally linked genes whose loss, they posit, confers a survival advantage on growing tumors.

Biosignatures distinguish between tuberculosis and sarcoidosis
Various combinations of biomarkers are required to unequivocally diagnose a specific disease.

Overweight? New research explains how proper sleep is important for healthy weight
A new report shows that counting calories to lose weight is only part of the equation.

'Glossary of Geology' now available as an e-book for Kindle and Nook
The revised fifth edition of the

Oral zinc may lessen common cold symptoms but adverse effects are common
Oral zinc treatments may shorten the duration of symptoms of the common cold in adults, although adverse effects are common, according to a study published in CMAJ.

Sperm crawl and collide on way to egg, say scientists
Scientists at the universities of Birmingham and Warwick have shed new light on how sperm navigate the female reproductive tract,

European mountain plant population shows delayed response to climate change
A modeling study from the European Alps suggests that population declines to be observed during the upcoming decades will probably underestimate the long-term effects of recent climate warming on mountain plants.

Analysis of speed of Greenland glaciers gives new insight for rising sea level
Changes in the speed that ice travels in more than 200 outlet glaciers indicates that Greenland's contribution to rising sea level in the 21st century could be significantly less than the upper limits some scientists thought possible.

Defective carnitine metabolism may play role in autism
The deletion of part of a gene that plays a role in the synthesis of carnitine - an amino acid derivative that helps the body use fat for energy - may play a role in milder forms of autism, said a group of researchers led by those at Baylor College of Medicine and Texas Children's Hospital.

Heart attack survivors living close to highways face higher 10-year death risk
Living close to a major highway poses a significant risk to heart attack survivors, reinforcing the need to isolate housing developments from heavy traffic areas, a Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center study concludes.

Gut flora affects maturation of B cells in infants
Infants whose gut is colonized by E. coli bacteria early in life have a higher number of memory B cells in their blood, reveals a study of infants carried out at the Sahlgrenska Academy at the University of Gothenburg, Sweden.

Psychopathy linked to specific structural abnormalities in the brain
New research provides the strongest evidence to date that psychopathy is linked to specific structural abnormalities in the brain.

70 percent of beaches eroding on Hawaiian islands Kauai, Oahu, and Maui
An assessment of coastal change over the past century has found 70 percent of beaches on the islands of Kauaʻi, Oʻahu, and Maui are undergoing long-term erosion, according to a US Geological Survey and University of Hawai'i report released today.

New research about Facebook addiction
Researchers from Norway have developed an instrument to measure Facebook addiction, the Bergen Facebook Addiction Scale.

Exercise slows muscle wasting from age and heart failure
A four-week exercise program for heart-failure patients slowed muscle-wasting and improved their exercise capacity, regardless of age.

Genetic abnormalities in benign or malignant tissues predict relapse of prostate cancer
Researchers from the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine have found that a genetic abnormality known as copy number variation in prostate cancer tumors, as well as in the benign prostate tissues adjacent to the tumor and in the blood of patients with prostate cancer, can predict whether a patient will experience a relapse, and the nature of the relapse -- aggressive or indolent.

Endangered species, languages linked at high biodiversity regions
Biodiversity hot spots -- the world's biologically richest and most threatened locations on Earth -- and high biodiversity wilderness areas -- biologically rich but less threatened -- are some of the most linguistically diverse regions on our planet, according to a team of conservationists.

SeaSketch, the next generation of UCSB's MarineMap program, will aid marine spatial planning
Since 2009, a free Web-based marine mapping and spatial planning program created by UC Santa Barbara scientists has proved to be an essential tool for fishermen and other stakeholders along the California coastline.

Mayo Clinic confirms genetic predictor for Fuchs' corneal dystrophy
Mayo Clinic and University of Oregon researchers have confirmed that a genetic factor called a repeating trinucleotide is a strong predictor of an individual's risk of developing the eye condition Fuchs' dystrophy.

Dry rivers, vibrant with culture and life
Dry rivers are more than mere desiccated shells of their robustly flowing incarnations, says Australian ecologist Alisha Steward and colleagues.

Mystery of the domestication of the horse solved
New research indicates that domestic horses originated in the steppes of modern-day Ukraine, southwest Russia and west Kazakhstan, mixing with local wild stocks as they spread throughout Europe and Asia.

Study examines associations between TV viewing, eating by school children
Television viewing and unhealthy eating habits in US adolescents appear to be linked in a national survey of students in the fifth to 10th grades, according to a report published in the May issue of Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine, a JAMA Network publication.

Keeping obesity rates level could save nearly $550 billion over 2 decades
Researchers have forecast the cost savings and rise in obesity prevalence over the next two decades in a new public health study.

Lifelong depression may increase risk of vascular dementia
Depressive symptoms that occur in both midlife and late life are associated with an increased risk of developing vascular dementia, while symptoms that occur in late life only are more likely to be early signs of Alzheimer's disease, according to University of California at San Francisco (UCSF) and Kaiser Permanente researchers.

Looking for Earths by looking for Jupiters
In the search for Earth-like planets, it is helpful to look for clues and patterns that can help scientist narrow down the types of systems where potentially habitable planets are likely to be discovered.

Annals of Internal Medicine tip sheet for May 8, 2012, online issue
This release contains information about two articles being published in the May 8 online issue of Annals of Internal Medicine.

A place to play: Researcher designs schoolyard for children with autism
Kansas State University researchers in landscape architecture are creating a schoolyard that can become a therapeutic landscape for children with autism.

Biomarkers can reveal IBS
Irritable bowel syndrome is hard to diagnose as well as treat, but researchers at the Sahlgrenska Academy, at the University of Gothenburg, Sweden, have discovered a way of confirming the disorder using stool samples.

Ohio's ultra-fast broadband network to expand to Portsmouth, Wooster
The Ohio cities of Portsmouth and Wooster will serve as hubs on the state's ultra-fast broadband network, OARnet, providing the network with even greater statewide reach at speeds of 100 Gigabits per second.

Picking the brains of strangers helps make sense of online information
People who have already sifted through online information to make sense of a subject can help strangers facing similar tasks without ever directly communicating with them, researchers at Carnegie Mellon University and Microsoft Research have demonstrated.

Brief training program improves resident physicians' empathy with patients
Resident physicians' participation in a brief training program designed to increase empathy with their patients produced significant improvement in how patients perceived their interactions with the residents.

Scarring cells revert to inactive state as liver heals
An international team of scientists, led by researchers at the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine, report that significant numbers of myofibroblasts -- cells that produce the fibrous scarring in chronic liver injury -- revert to an inactive phenotype as the liver heals.

Dr. F. Marc LaForce receives 2012 Albert B. Sabin Gold Medal Award
Today, the Sabin Vaccine Institute presented its annual Albert B.

Pneumococcal disease: More cases but fewer deaths
The vaccine given to children to immunize against serious pneumococcal disease does not offer full protection, reveals research from the Sahlgrenska Academy at the University of Gothenburg, Sweden, finding that the number of cases diagnosed has tripled over the past 50 years.

The gifts we keep on giving
Birthdays, graduations, Christmas, baby showers, bridal showers, bar and bat mitzvahs, Mother's Day, Father's Day, wedding anniversaries, the occasional sorry- about-that gesture, hostess gifts and presents that don't even fall into a recognizable category.

Anthropologist finds explanation for hominin brain evolution in famous fossil
One of the world's most important fossils has a story to tell about the brain evolution of modern humans and their ancestors, according to Florida State University evolutionary anthropologist Dean Falk.

Computer scientists develop an interactive field guide app for birders
A team of researchers led by computer scientist Serge Belongie at the University of California, San Diego, has good news for birders: They have developed an iPad app that will identify most North American birds, with a little help from a human user.

New study examines what could predict children's snack choices
University of Cincinnati research reveals why more kids may be munching on unhealthy foods.

Unconscious racial attitudes playing large role in 2012 presidential vote
After the 2008 election of President Barack Obama, many proclaimed that the country had entered a post-racial era in which race was no longer an issue.

Honing in on supernova origins
Type Ia supernovae are important stellar phenomena, used to measure the expansion of the universe.

Study suggests mid-adolescence is peak risk for extramedical use of pain relievers by young people
Surveys of US adolescents suggest that the estimated peak risk of using prescription pain relievers for extramedical use, such as to get high or for other unapproved indications, occurs in mid-adolescence, according to a report published online first by Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine, a JAMA Network publication.

Obesity prevention program for girls not associated with significant difference in body mass index
An Australian school-based obesity prevention program for adolescent girls was not associated with statistically significant differences in body mass index (BMI) and other body composition measures, however the small changes may be related to clinically important health outcomes, according to a report published Online First by Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine, a JAMA Network publication.

Delayed female sexual maturity linked to longer lifespan in mice
Female mice from strains with lower IGF1 levels reach sexual maturity at a significantly later age.

Exercise slows muscle wasting from age and heart failure
A four-week exercise program for heart-failure patients slowed muscle-wasting and improved their exercise capacity, regardless of age.

Biodiversity loss may cause increase in allergies and asthma
Declining biodiversity may be contributing to the rise of asthma, allergies, and other chronic inflammatory diseases among people living in cities worldwide, a Finnish study suggests.

Automated autism screening tool available on Autism Speaks website
Autism Speaks has launched an automated version of the Modified Checklist for Autism in Toddlers if parents are concerned about their child's development.

Study confirms early elevated HIV infection risk in some Step Study participants
A long-term follow-up analysis of participants in the Step Study, an international HIV-vaccine trial, has confirmed that certain subgroups of male study participants were at higher risk of becoming infected after receiving the experimental vaccine compared to those who received a placebo.

Consumer-directed health plans could help cut health costs, study finds
If consumer-directed health plans grow to the point where they account for half of all employer-sponsored insurance in the United States, health costs could drop by $57 billion annually -- about four percent of all health care spending among the non-elderly, according to a new study.

Autobiographies have not dissolved the boundary between private and public
In reviews of and debates over literary self-expressions, it is frequently pointed out that the boundary between what is private and what is public is in the process of being dissolved.

Procedure gives patients with A-fib who can't take blood thinners alternative to reduce stroke
Patients with atrial fibrillation (A-fib) who cannot take blood thinners now have an alternative to reduce their risk of stroke.

Maternal perceptions of toddler body size often wrong
A study of mothers and their toddlers suggests that mothers of overweight toddlers often had inaccurate perceptions of their child's body size, according to a report published in the May issue of Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine, a JAMA Network publication.

Georgia Tech/Microsoft study shows bandwidth caps create user uncertainty, risky decisions
A new study by a Georgia Tech researcher shows that capped broadband pricing triggers uneasy user experiences that could be mitigated by better tools to monitor data usage through their home networks.

Happiness model developed by MU researcher could help people go from good to great
The sayings

Questionnaire surveys may have political implications
When journalists and politicians want to find out the feelings and opinions of Swedes, they often look at survey results published by the SOM Institute.

From urban climate research to the treatment of incontinence
DFG to establish seven new research units with over 16 million euros in total for the first funding period.

Plants disappear as a result of climate changes
Climate changes mean that species are disappearing from European mountain regions.

Rituximab promotes long-term response for patients with immune destruction of platelets
A new analysis concludes that rituximab, a drug commonly used to treat blood cancers, leads to treatment responses lasting at least five years in approximately one quarter of patients with low platelet counts and a risk of bleeding due to chronic immune thrombocytopenic purpura.

MSU plan would control deadly tsetse fly
For the first time, scientists have created a satellite-guided plan to effectively control the tsetse fly - an African killer that spreads

New research brings satellite measurements and global climate models closer
UW researchers have discovered a problem with a climate record that is often cited by climate change skeptics.

FRAX® version 3.6 released with 5 new country models
The WHO Fracture Risk Assessment Tool - FRAX® has now been released as version 3.6 with new country models for Chile, Greece, Indonesia, Ireland and Lithuania.

Deep brain stimulation may hold promise for mild Alzheimer's disease
A study on a handful of people with suspected mild Alzheimer's disease (AD) suggests that a device that sends continuous electrical impulses to specific

Some HDL, or 'good' cholesterol, may not protect against heart disease
A new study by Harvard School of Public Health researchers has found that a subclass of high-density lipoprotein cholesterol, the so-called

New study published on fertility awareness among American university students
A groundbreaking study lead by Chapman University professor Brennan Peterson, Ph.D. on fertility awareness of American college students will be published in the May 5 edition of Human Reproduction -- a top-tier international journal in reproductive biology.

Researchers discover gene that leads to severe weight gain with antipsychotic treatment
Antipsychotic medications are increasingly prescribed in the US, but they can cause serious side effects including rapid weight gain, especially in children.

AAO-HNS releases updated Clinical Indicators
The American Academy of Otolaryngology -- Head and Neck Surgery (AAO-HNS) has released updated Clinical Indicators for the public and physicians.

AMA committee recommendations on doctor fees set by Medicare are followed 9 times out of 10
To calculate physicians' fees under Medicare the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services relies on the recommendations of an American Medical Association advisory panel.

Team care of chronic diseases seems cost-effective
More and more people have multiple physical and mental chronic conditions, and caring for them is difficult -- and costly.

Journals and pharma collaborate on new recommendations
The Medical Publishing Insights and Practices initiative and its co-sponsors recently collaborated with journal editors to characterize the persistent and perceived credibility gap in reporting industry-sponsored research and to identify potential approaches to resolve it.

Power generation technology based on piezoelectric nanocomposite materials developed by KAIST
Professor Keon- Jae Lee's research team, KAIST, has developed a nanocomposite-based nanogenerator that successfully overcomes the critical restrictions existed in previous nanogenerators and builds a simple, low-cost, and large-scale self-powered energy system.

Purpose in life may protect against harmful changes in the brain associated with Alzheimer's disease
Greater purpose in life may help stave off the harmful effects of plaques and tangles associated with Alzheimer's disease, according to a new study by researchers at Rush University Medical Center.

Louisiana Tech University designated a National Center of Excellence by NSA, DHS
The National Security Agency and Department of Homeland Security has designated Louisiana Tech University as a National Center of Academic Excellence in Information Assurance Research from the National Security Agency and the Department of Homeland Security for academic years 2012 through 2017.

Taking America's rarest snake back to the woods
On May 1, USDA Forest Service, US Fish and Wildlife Service, Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries, the Memphis Zoo, and other partners released seven young Louisiana pine snakes on a restored longleaf pine stand in the Kisatchie National Forest in Louisiana.

Scripps Research scientists show how memory B cells stay 'in class' to fight different infections
Scientists at the Scripps Research Institute have made an important discovery about the internal programming of B cells, the immune cells that make antibodies against infections.

PSA screening to detect prostate cancer can be beneficial to younger and at-risk men
Screening younger men and men at risk of prostate cancer can be beneficial in reducing metastatic cancer and deaths and should not be abandoned, states an article published in CMAJ.

Diabetes drug could treat leading cause of blindness
Researchers have discovered that a drug already prescribed to millions of people with diabetes could also have another important use: treating one of the world's leading causes of blindness.

Death risks higher for heart attack survivors living near major roadways
Living near a major roadway increases heart attack survivors' risk of death.

Screening for breast cancer without X-rays: Lasers and sound merge in promising diagnostic technique
In the first phase of clinical testing of a new imaging device, researchers from Netherlands' University of Twente and Medisch Spectrum Twente Hospital in Oldenzaal used photoacoustics rather than ionizing radiation to detect and visualize breast tumors.

16 years old is peak risk for teens misusing prescription drugs
The peak risk for misusing prescription pain relievers occurs in mid-adolescence, specifically about 16 years old and earlier than many experts thought, according to a new study by Michigan State University researchers.

Not all tumor cells are equal: Stanford study reveals huge genetic diversity in cells shed by tumors
The cells that slough off from a cancerous tumor into the bloodstream are genetically diverse, Stanford University School of Medicine researchers have found.

Best websites balance self-expression and functionality
Giving people the freedom -- but not too much freedom -- to express themselves may help designers build more interactive web portals and online communities, according to Penn State researchers.

Dresden research partners support next generation of nanoelectronic scientists
In order to successfully promote the next generation of superb scientists for the microelectronics venue Dresden, the Helmholtz-Zentrum Dresden-Rossendorf founded the International Helmholtz Research School for Nanoelectronic Networks NANONET together with the TU Dresden, the Leibniz Institute for Polymer Research Dresden, the Fraunhofer Institute for Nondestructive Testing, and the NaMLab gGmbH corporation.

Gaseous emissions from dinosaurs may have warmed prehistoric earth
Sauropod dinosaurs could in principle have produced enough of the greenhouse gas methane to warm the climate many millions of years ago, at a time when the Earth was warm and wet.

Death penalty or penal labor for poachers
In Sweden, hunting has been an important part of life for both the elite and people at large - yet the two groups have not enjoyed quite the same opportunities.

UC3M infrared technology for space and the environment
The Spectral Sensors Laboratory at Carlos III University in Madrid carries out research in the areas of aeronautics, security and the environment in collaboration with numerous companies, to develop and innovate spatial components and environmental sensors using infrared technology.

Kids with cerebral palsy may benefit from video game play
Like their healthy peers, children with disabilities may spend too much time in front of a video screen.

Science, Innovation, and Partnerships for Sustainability -- Symposium May 16-18
Sustainability has become a major focus for federal, state, and local government agencies, businesses, and nonprofits.

Study examines collaborative care intervention among patients with depression
Among adults with depression and poorly controlled diabetes mellitus, coronary heart disease, or both, a collaborative care intervention incorporating a team-centered care approach is associated with improvements in depression-free days and quality-adjusted life-years, according to a report in the May issue of Archives of General Psychiatry, a JAMA Network publication.

Record for Swedish Crown Princess Victoria
Political leaders such as Barack Obama and Swedish Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt may be popular among Swedes.

Scientists discover new type of cell with a key role in treatment-resistant asthma
The discovery of a new cell type in mice and humans may help explain what's going on in the lungs of people with steroid-resistant asthma.

New rearing system may aid sterile insect technique against mosquitoes
Scientists at the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization and the International Atomic Energy Agency have developed a larval rearing unit based on a tray and rack system that is expected to be able to successfully rear rear 140,000-175,000 adult mosquitoes per rack.

1 supernova type, 2 different sources
The exploding stars known as Type Ia supernovae serve an important role in measuring the universe, and were used to discover the existence of dark energy.

Overcoming a learning disability will make physician-in-training a better doctor
Overcoming a learning disability to become a physician will actually help in being compassionate toward patients, writes a medical student of his struggle with a severe reading disability in CMAJ.

Researchers see BPA effects in monkey mammary glands
A new study finds that fetal exposure to the plastic additive bisphenol A, or BPA, alters mammary gland development in primates.

Study shows school-based health centers boost vaccination rates
New research from the University of Colorado School of Medicine shows that school-based health centers are highly effective in delivering vaccinations to adolescents.

Millennium Villages project shows coordinated efforts can accelerate progress towards MDGs and beyond
New research published online first by the Lancet shows that, three years after implementation, mortality in children aged under five years in Millennium Villages has fallen by a third compared with matched control sites, showing that accelerated progress towards the Millennium Development Goals is possible with improvements across a range of sectors.

AGA releases first independently developed ABIM-approved Practice Improvement Module in GI
The American Gastroenterological Association Institute's Procedural Sedation/Patient Safety Practice Improvement Module has received approval from the American Board of Internal Medicine to be part of ABIM's Approved Quality Improvement Pathway.

Protein may represent a switch to turn off B cell lymphoma
Researchers studying the molecular signals that drive a specific type of lymphoma have discovered a key biological pathway leading to this type of cancer.

Midlife and late-life depressive symptoms associated with dementia
Depressive symptoms that are present in midlife or in late life are associated with an increased risk of developing dementia, according to a report in the May issue of Archives of General Psychiatry, a JAMA Network publication. 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