Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

June 29, 2012
AGU journal highlights -- 29 June 2012
Featured in this release are research papers on the following topics:

La Draga Neolithic site in Banyoles yields the oldest Neolithic bow discovered in Europe
Researchers from UAB and CSIC have discovered the oldest Neolithic bow in Europe at La Draga Neolithic site in Banyoles.

Bees shed light on human sweet perception and metabolic disorders
Scientists at Arizona State University have discovered that honey bees may teach us about basic connections between taste perception and metabolic disorders in humans.

NSF funds University of Miami, Navy Postgraduate School research in ocean dynamics
Funded by a grant from the NSF, a study led by University of Miami's Dr.

Colorful light at the end of the tunnel for radiation detection
A team of nanomaterials researchers at Sandia National Laboratories has developed a new technique for radiation detection that could make radiation detection in cargo and baggage more effective and less costly for homeland security inspectors.

Britain's urban rivers bounce back
After decades of pollution, typically from poorly treated sewage and industrial waste, rivers in or near Britain's major urban areas are regaining insects such as mayflies and stoneflies that are typical of fast-flowing, oxygen-rich waters.

Dr. Prabhat Jha, global health researcher, appointed to Order of Canada
Dr. Prabhat Jha, head of the Centre for Global Health Research at St.

Cell Press journals continue to deliver high impact
Latest annual citation reports confirm -Cell Press delivers highly valued, highly cited research and reviews to the scientific community it serves

Clean cookstoves unaffordable to Bangladeshi women
Women in rural Bangladesh prefer inexpensive, traditional stoves for cooking over modern ones despite significant health risks, according to a Yale study in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

AFAR's MSTAR program addresses shortage of geriatric medicine physicians
One hundred forty-seven students from some of the nation's top medical schools are entering a unique program addressing the shortage of physicians specially trained to care for America's older adults -- a shortage that is expected to get far worse in coming years.

Dr. Douglas Wallace to receive Gruber Foundation 2012 Genetics Prize
Douglas C. Wallace, Ph.D., director of the Center for Mitochondrial and Epigenomic Medicine at The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, will receive the 2012 Genetics Prize of The Gruber Foundation.

U-series dating suggests Welsh reindeer is Britain's oldest rock art
A reindeer engraved on the wall of a cave in South Wales has been found to date from at least 14,505 years ago -- making it the oldest known rock art in the British Isles.

Necrosis after cortisone injections
Injections of corticoid preparations can have severe side effects. In this issue of Deutsches Aerzteblatt International, Christian Holland and coauthors contribute to physicians' awareness of problems of this type with a report on the relevant findings of medicolegal expert committees in Germany.

Hi-C to investigate activity in solar atmosphere
NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala. is leading an international effort to develop and launch the High Resolution Coronal Imager, or Hi-C, on a sounding rocket from the White Sands Missile Range at White Sands, N.M.

Easter Island drug raises cognition throughout life span
Rapamycin, a compound first isolated from soil on Easter Island, enhanced learning and memory in a study of young, middle-aged and older mice.

Preventing the immune system from going haywire during sepsis
Many strategies aiming at holding back the extreme response of the immune system during sepsis have been developed but little progress has been made.

Skin contact breast tumor detection
A simple and cost effective imaging device for breast tumor detection based on a flexible and wearable antenna system has been developed by researchers at the Indiana University -- Purdue University Indianapolis.

'Ambient' bullying gives employees urge to quit
Merely showing up to work in an environment where bullying goes on is enough to make many of us think about quitting, a new study suggests.

University of Texas at Austin researchers demonstrate first successful 'spoofing' of UAVs
A University of Texas at Austin research team successfully demonstrated for the first time that the GPS signals of an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV), or drone, can be commandeered by an outside source -- a discovery that could factor heavily into the implementation of a new federal mandate to allow thousands of civilian drones into the US airspace by 2015.

University of Texas at Austin team wins robot soccer world championships in 2 divisions
UT Austin Villa, a team of computer science students led by professor Peter Stone, won two 2012 Robot Soccer World Cup division championships during RoboCup 2012 last week in Mexico City.

Sandy beaches, hydrocarbon reservoirs, tectonic tilting: It's all about geology
Topics in this new batch of Geology papers posted online 29 June include ecospace utilization; Little Bahama Bank; climatic asynchrony; oceanic crust; sand budgets; the Alpine fault's seismic hazard to New Zealand; volcano behavior; gravity oscillations; chemical weathering in the Critical Zone; giant wave ripples; the location of high peaks as a function of drainage network; and soils as ledgers recording transactions of energy and material between Earth's plants, rocks, water, and atmosphere.

BGI demonstrated genomic data transfer at nearly 10 gigabits per second between US and China
BGI, the world's largest genomics organization, announced today that a group of scientists and researchers successfully demonstrated genomic data transfer at a sustained rate of almost 10 Gigabits per second over a new link connecting US and China research and education networks.

New marker, new target in Ewing's sarcoma
Study published this week in Molecular Cancer Research implicates the protein EYA3 in Ewing's sarcoma chemoresistance.

University of Pittsburgh study reveals moderate doses of alcohol increase social bonding in groups
A new study led by University of Pittsburgh researchers reveals that moderate amounts of alcohol--consumed in a social setting--can enhance positive emotions and social bonding and relieve negative emotions among those drinking.

Programmable RNA complex could speed genome editing in the lab
With a newly discovered component of an adaptive bacterial immune system, scientists have identified a targeted method of slicing DNA that they say can be easily customized for a variety of applications in the lab.

New study finds low rates of biopsy contribute to celiac disease underdiagnosis in US
Under-performance of small bowel biopsy during endoscopy may be a major reason that celiac disease remains underdiagnosed in the United States, according to a new study published online recently in Gastrointestinal Endoscopy.

Native plant restoration not enough to maintain tropical dry forests in Hawaii
Protecting Hawaiian dry forests from invasive species and the risk of wildfire is an ongoing challenge for land managers and scientists conducting research on the Island of Hawaii.

SACLA draws acclaim for unique XFEL design
A detailed technical introduction to the SPring-8 Angstrom Compact free-electron Laser (SACLA) appeared online in Nature Photonics.

Eye doctor receives Visionary Award
Eliot L. Berson, M.D., director of the Berman-Gund Laboratory for the Study of Retinal Degenerations located at the Mass.

Making the shortest light bursts leads to better understanding of nature
An attosecond is a ridiculously brief sliver of time - a scant billionth of a billionth of a second.

NASA explains why clocks will get an extra second on June 30
If the day seems a little longer than usual on Saturday, June 30, 2012, that's because it will be.

A new method accounts for social factors when assessing the seismic risk of a city
Seismic risk not only depends on the magnitude of the tremor itself but also on the resistance of buildings and the social characteristics of its population.

Farmers get fertilizer advice with loans via mobile technology
Using mobile technology, Filipino rice farmers now have access to personalized fertilizer advice and micro-loans to buy fertilizer for their crop thanks to a new partnership between a microfinance bank and a farmer-focused organization.

Curvy mountain belts
Mountain belts on Earth are most commonly formed by collision of one or more tectonic plates.

Scientists urge new approaches to plant research
In a paper published this week in the journal Science, a Michigan State University professor and a colleague discuss why if humans are to survive as a species, we must turn more to plants for any number of valuable lessons.

Computing advances vital to sustainability efforts; new report recommends problem-focused, iterative approach to research
Innovation in computing will be essential to finding real-world solutions to sustainability challenges in such areas as electricity production and delivery, global food production, and climate change.

Short stretches of piRNA evaluate cells' genetic history
New work from HHMI scientists suggests that abundant small RNA molecules known as Piwi-interacting RNAs may be part of the cell's search engine, capable of querying the entire history of a cell's genetic past to detect the genes of foreign invaders.

Falling lizards use tail for mid-air twist, inspiring lizard-like 'RightingBot'
Lizards, just like cats, have a knack for turning right side up and landing on their feet when they fall.

Study finds new gene mutations that lead to enlarged brain size, cancer, autism, epilepsy
A research team led by Seattle Children's Research Institute has discovered new gene mutations associated with markedly enlarged brain size, or megalencephaly.

Acoustic tweezers capture tiny creatures with ultrasound
A device about the size of a dime can manipulate living materials such as blood cells and entire small organisms, using sound waves, according to a team of bioengineers and biochemists from Penn State.

NPL scientists help create an extra second of summer
Scientists at the National Physical Laboratory will be adding a leap second at 00:59 BST on July 1 to its atomic clocks, to ensure UK time remains synchronized with international time.

New fuel cell keeps going after the hydrogen runs out
Materials scientists at Harvard have demonstrated a solid-oxide fuel cell (SOFC) that converts hydrogen into electricity but can also store electrochemical energy like a battery.

GenSpera G-202 data in journal
Oncology company, GenSpera's, lead compound G-202 is reviewed in Science Translational Medicine.

Accelerated radiation treatment effective for noninvasive breast cancer
Accelerated whole breast irradiation after lumpectomy is an effective treatment for ductal carcinoma in situ, a very common early stage and noninvasive form of breast cancer, meaning many more breast cancer patients could see their treatment times reduced by half, according to a study in the June issue of the International Journal of Radiation Oncology•Biology•Physics, the official scientific journal of the American Society for Radiation Oncology.

New technique could reduce number of animals needed to test chemical safety
A new way of testing the safety of natural and synthetic chemicals has been developed by scientists with funding from the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council.

Revealing climate change website wins global award
A new website that opens up the complex world of climate change and how it relates to the individual has won a major global award for a team from the University of Southampton. 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