Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

August 07, 2012
Increasing federal match funds for states boosts enrollment of kids in health-care programs
Significantly more children get health insurance coverage after increases in federal matching funds to states for Medicaid and the Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP), according to new research from the University of Michigan.

A molecule central to diabetes is uncovered
At its most fundamental level, diabetes is a disease characterized by stress -- microscopic stress that causes inflammation and the loss of insulin production in the pancreas, and system-wide stress due to the loss of that blood-sugar-regulating hormone.

Food hypersensitivity and otolaryngologic conditions in young children
Cow's milk protein allergy, although difficult to diagnose in young children, shows a causative relationship to otolaryngic symptoms.

Searching for tumors or handguns can be like looking for food
If past experience makes you think there's going to be one more cashew at the bottom of the bowl, you're likely to search through those mixed nuts a little longer.

Using wastewater as fertilizer
Sewage sludge, wastewater and liquid manure are valuable sources of fertilizer for food production.

Marin County's high breast cancer rate may be tied to genetics
Marin County, California has one of the highest rates of breast cancer in the world, a fact that scientists know has nothing to do with the land itself but with some other, unknown factor.

Children's healthy diets lead to healthier IQ
Children fed healthy diets in early age may have a slightly higher IQ, while those on heavier junk food diets may have a slightly reduced IQ, according to new research from the University of Adelaide.

Innovation crisis in drug research is a myth, warn experts
The widely touted

Few kids use recommended safety restraints in cars
Despite the fact that car crashes are the leading cause of death for children older than three years in the US, and send more than 140,000 children to the emergency room each year, new research has found that low proportions of US children are using age-appropriate safety restraints and many are placed at risk by riding in the front seat.

AuCoin gets $600,000 to refine new test for deadly bacterial infection melioidosis
A new rapid test to diagnose melioidosis, a difficult infection to treat - and classified as a biothreat by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention - is being optimized and tested by University of Nevada School of Medicine researcher David AuCoin.

What makes Paris look like Paris? Carnegie Mellon software finds stylistic core
Paris is one of those cities that has a look all its own, something that goes beyond landmarks such as the Eiffel Tower or Notre Dame.

Study finds a new pathway for invasive species - science teachers
A survey of teachers from the United States and Canada found that one out of four educators who used live animals as part of their science curriculum released the organisms into the wild after they were done using them in the classroom.

Frequent traveller: Dysentery-causing bacteria spreading from Europe to Australia
Researchers have found that a strain of dysentery-causing bacterium that originated from Europe centuries ago is spreading rapidly to Australia and some developing countries.

Plain packaging of cigarettes encourages young smokers to heed health warnings
New research published online in the scientific journal Addiction shows that plain packaging (requiring cigarettes to be packaged in standard packages without attractive designs and imagery) may help to draw the attention of some adolescent smokers to the health warnings on the package.

Saving lives: Philanthropists establish $100,000 cancer challenge
Through Sept. 30, donations for ovarian cancer research at the Translational Genomics Research Institute will be matched -- up to $100,000 -- by philanthropists Lynn and Foster Friess.

Advance in X-ray imaging shines light on nanomaterials
A new advance in X-ray imaging has revealed the dramatic three-dimensional shape of gold nanocrystals, and is likely to shine a light on the structure of other nano-scale materials.

A simple way to help cities monitor traffic more accurately
New software helps make in-road traffic detectors more accurate -- and help city planners save money.

Wayne State University to search for potential drug targets to treat Barth Syndrome
A team of researchers at Wayne State University has received funding from the Barth Syndrome Foundation to test a novel hypothesis to find ways to restore the TCA cycle metabolites that may offer potential new treatments for Barth Syndrome.

Grapefruit juice lets patients take lower dose of cancer drug
A glass a day of grapefruit juice lets patients derive the same benefits from an anti-cancer drug as they would get from more than three times as much of the drug by itself.

Genetic Engineering & Biotechnology News unveils 'Biotech Boulevard'
Genetic Engineering & Biotechnology News has launched a unique microsite called Biotech Boulevard.

New non-toxic disinfectant could tackle hospital infections
A new disinfectant, Akwaton, that works at extremely low concentrations could be used in healthcare settings to help control persistent hospital-acquired infections such as Clostridium difficile.

Lawson research suggests breast cancer cells have discerning tastes
If detected early, most cases of breast cancer are curable.

BUSM/VA Boston Healthcare System investigators identify new gene linked to PTSD
Investigators at Boston University School of Medicine and Veterans Affairs Boston Healthcare System have identified a new gene linked to post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

2012 American Chestnut Summit
The restoration of the American chestnut is a project that requires the cooperation of state and federal agencies, private organizations, industry and individuals.

Corticosteroids not effective for treating acute sinusitis
Corticosteroids, frequently prescribed to alleviate acute sinusitis, show no clinical benefit in treating the condition, according to a randomized controlled trial published in CMAJ (Canadian Medical Association Journal).

Penn study finds with vacant lots greened, residents feel safer
Greening vacant lots may make neighborhood residents feel safer and may be associated with reductions in certain gun crimes, according to a new study from the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania.

Healthcare researchers recognized at SingHealth Duke-NUS Scientific Congress 2012
Results of the highly anticipated Best Oral Presentation and Best Poster Awards were announced at SingHealth Duke-NUS Scientific Congress 2012, held on Aug.

Method to prevent rejection of disease-fighting proteins described in Human Gene Therapy journal
The body's natural reaction to reject replacement proteins represents a major obstacle to the successful use of gene therapy to cure a range of life-threatening diseases.

Making it easier to learn to read
Dyslexia caused by signal processing in the brain.

Why do infants get sick so often?
Babies can get sick often, but parents shouldn't take the blame.

TRPM7 protein key to breast cancer metastasis in animal models
In a mouse xenograft model, TRPM7 drives breast cancer cell metastasis.

Thinner diabetics face higher death rate
American adults of a normal weight with new-onset diabetes die at a higher rate than overweight/obese adults with the same disease, according to a new Northwestern Medicine study.

Keeping the faith through souvenirs
Although it may not seem like much, the small wooden figurine Grandma brought back from the Holy Land has been blessed.

New model synapse could shed light on disorders such as epilepsy and anxiety
A new way to study the role of a critical neurotransmitter in disorders such as epilepsy, anxiety, insomnia, depression, schizophrenia, and alcoholism has been developed.

GW Researcher finds depressive symptoms and suicidal thoughts in former finasteride users
Michael Irwig, M.D., assistant professor of medicine at the George Washington University School of Medicine and Health Sciences, published a new study in the Journal of Clinical Psychiatry titled,

Eco-computer with a natural wood look
Surfing for hours on the Internet consumes a lot of electricity and is harmful to the environment.

Composite nanofibers developed by Penn scientists next chapter in orthopaedic biomaterials
Penn scientists have developed and validated a new technology in which composite nanofibrous scaffolds provide a loose enough structure for cells to colonize without impediment, but still can instruct cells how to lay down new tissue.

Unemployment gap persists among women, minorities, white men, according to MU research
The unemployment rate differences among white males, women and minorities have decreased during the past few decades in the United States, but persistent inequalities continue among the groups, according to a study by an economist at the University of Missouri.

Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania selected to lead US nurse-training initiative
The Department of Health and Human Services has selected the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania as one of five hospitals that will take part in a nationwide initiative designed to train more nurses at a higher level.

University of Tennessee professor receives NSF's CAREER Award
The CAREER award is NSF's most prestigious honor for junior faculty who demonstrate outstanding research, excellent education and the integration of education and research within the context of the mission of their organizations.

Major IOF osteoporosis meeting to take place in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
International Osteoporosis Foundation will hold its 3rd IOF Regionals - Asia-Pacific Osteoporosis Meeting from Dec.

Molecular economics: New computer models calculate systems-wide costs of gene expression
Bioengineers at the University of California, San Diego have developed a method of modeling, simultaneously, an organism's metabolism and its underlying gene expression.

Can nature parks save biodiversity?
The 14 years of wildlife studies in and around Madagascar's Ranomafana National Park by Sarah Karpanty, associate professor of wildlife conservation at Virginia Tech's College of Natural Resources and Environment, and her students are summarily part of a paper on biodiversity published July 25 by Nature's Advanced Online Publication and coming out soon in print.

BGI Tech and BAB jointly develop transgenic mice platform for biomedical research
BGI Tech and BAB jointly develop transgenic mice platform for biomedical research.

Infrared NASA imagery shows a weaker Tropical Storm 13W
Infrared satellite imagery from shows how cold cloud top temperatures are in a tropical cyclone, and recent imagery from NASA's Aqua satellite shows the cloud-top temperatures have been warming in Tropical Storm 13W.

SAGE to publish Pacifica from February 2013
SAGE and the Pacifica Theological Studies Association today announced a new agreement to publish the Association's journal, Pacifica, from February 2013.

Diseased trees new source of climate gas
Diseased trees in forests may be a significant new source of methane that causes climate change, according to researchers at the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies in Geophysical Research Letters.

California's hydroelectricity production is vulnerable to climate change
California's hydropower is vulnerable to climate change, a UC Riverside scientist has advised policymakers in the report

New VSL#3® JUNIOR probiotic for children now available
Sigma-Tau Pharmaceuticals, Inc., is excited to introduce a new probiotic medical food for children with IBS.

Study reveals impact of historical domestic cattle hybridization with American bison
Plains bison are an iconic symbol of America on everything from coins to state flags.

Clinical trial for rabies monoclonal antibody
A clinical trial for an anti-rabies human monoclonal antibody developed through a partnership between MassBiologics (UMass Medical School) and the Serum Institute of India is enrolling patients.

Coach could be key in helping stroke patients
When a stroke patient is discharged from the hospital, they often must cope with a new disability or lack of function, so changes can be particularly confusing.

NJIT scientist creates instrument for NASA Aug. 23 launch
NJIT Distinguished Research Professor and former Bell Labs scientist Louis J.

Notre Dame researcher is shedding light on how jaws evolve
If you're looking for information on the evolution and function of jaws, University of Notre Dame researcher Matt Ravosa is your man.

COI declarations and off-label drug use
Conflict-of-interest statements made by physicians and scientists in their medical journal articles after they had been allegedly paid by pharmaceutical manufacturers as part of off-label marketing programs are often inadequate, highlighting the deficiencies in relying on author candidness and the weaknesses in some journal practices in ensuring proper disclosure, according to a study by international researchers published in this week's PLOS Medicine.

Genetic analyses reveal novel mutations as causes of startle disease
Two studies published in the Journal of Biological Chemistry identify genetic mutations that play important roles in the condition commonly referred to as startle disease.

Higgs transition of north and south poles of electrons in a magnet
Minimal evidence of a Higgs transition of north and south poles of electron spins was observed in a magnet Yb2Ti2O7 at the absolute temperature 0.21 K.

UCF nanoparticle discovery opens door for pharmaceuticals
What a University of Central Florida student thought was a failed experiment has led to a serendipitous discovery hailed by some scientists as a potential game changer for the mass production of nanoparticles.

Lower risk of serious side-effects in trials of new targeted drugs
Patients in early clinical trials of new-style targeted cancer therapies appear to have a much lower risk of the most serious side-effects than with traditional chemotherapy.

Using millions of years of cell evolution in the fight against cancer
Professor John McDonald is studying micro RNAs (miRNAs), a class of small RNAs that interact with messenger RNAs that have been linked to a number of diseases, including cancer.

Families should not be allowed to veto dead relatives' organ donation wishes
Families should not be allowed to veto dead relatives' organ donation wishes, argues an ethicist on today.

Chemists advance clear conductive thin films
Thin, conductive films are useful in displays and solar cells.

UA Engineering gets $23 million in software from Schlumberger
The University of Arizona College of Engineering has received a software license valued at $23 million from Schlumberger, the world's leading oilfield services company.

Greater working memory capacity benefits analytic, but not creative, problem-solving
Psychological scientists have long known that the amount of information we can actively hold in mind at any given time - known as working memory - is limited.

PM&R: The Journal of Injury, Function and Rehabilitation to be covered in Reuters' Indexing Database
Elsevier, a world-leading publisher of scientific, technical and medical information products and services, is pleased to announce that the PM&R: Journal of Injury, Function and Rehabilitation, the official scientific journal of the American Academy of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, has been accepted for coverage by Thomson Reuters abstracting and indexing services, including the Journal Citation Reports®.

Planting the seeds of defense
It was long thought that methylation, a crucial part of normal organism development, was a static modification of DNA that could not be altered by environmental conditions.

Cholesterol levels appear to be improving among US youths
In a study involving more than 16,000 U.S. children and adolescents, there has been a decrease in average total cholesterol levels over the past 2 decades, although almost 1 in 10 had elevated total cholesterol in 2007-2010.

Treatment target for diabetes, Wolfram syndrome
Inflammation and cell stress play important roles in the death of insulin-secreting cells and are major factors in diabetes.

GEN reports on recent progress in Alzheimer's research
The global market value of Alzheimer's disease therapeutics could soar to the $8 billion range once therapeutics are approved that actually change the course of the disease, reports Genetic Engineering & Biotechnology News.

How is an ambrosia beetle threatening California's oak and avocado trees?
The Polyphagous Shot Hole Borer is a beetle that attacks oak and avocado trees, causing branch dieback and eventually death.

Patients want more risks disclosed before treatment
Australian doctors sometimes fail to warn patients of risks that could affect the patient's quality of life before providing treatment or surgery, a new study by University of Melbourne researchers has shown.

Clemson researcher awarded nearly $245,000 to study automation trust and dependence
The United States Air Force Office of Scientific Research awarded Clemson University a three-year, approximately $245,000 grant to determine what causes people to trust and rely on automation.

Study questions value of calcium and vitamin D supplements
Prescribing calcium and vitamin D supplements for men at risk of bone loss from hormonal treatment for prostate cancer seems like good medicine.

Doctors often don't disclose all possible risks to patients before treatment
Most informed consent disputes involve disagreements about who said what and when, not stand-offs over whether a particular risk ought to have been disclosed.

NYU School of Medicine announces new clinical trial for ulcerative colitis
A new clinical trial designed to study how worm eggs may relieve symptoms of ulcerative colitis will begin enrolling patients at NYU School of Medicine's Clinical and Translational Science Institute.

NASA sees Tropical Storm Haikui closing in on China
Tropical Storm Haikui is headed for landfall in southeastern China, and NASA's Aqua satellite caught a stunning image of its size and its ragged, but wide eye when it was a typhoon earlier today, Aug.

Improvement in Basque in schools, viewed from close quarters
Jasone Aldekoa works at the Berritzegune that covers the Arratia-Nervión and Upper Nervión area, and at the University of the Basque Country she has defended a thesis that reflects on the experience of the Ulibarri program in this area.

Integration of active tuberculosis case finding in a mobile HIV-testing clinic is feasible
A research article by Katharina Kranzer from the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine and colleagues describe the feasibility and costs of an active tuberculosis case finding project in Cape Town, South Africa.

Symposium on global opportunities, challenges for functional ingredients in foods and supplements
As consumers increasingly seek out foods and dietary supplements with perceived health benefits -- and manufacturers respond with new products utilizing novel, so-called

Color-coded labels improve healthy food choices in employees from all backgrounds
A program designed to encourage more healthful food choices through simple color-coded labels and the positioning of items in display cases was equally successful across all categories of employees at a large hospital cafeteria.

New drug successfully halts fibrosis in animal model of liver disease
A study published in the online journal Hepatology reports a potential new NADPH oxidase inhibitor therapy for liver fibrosis, a scarring process associated with chronic liver disease that can lead to loss of liver function.

The economic cost of increased temperatures
Even temporary rises in local temperatures significantly damage long-term economic growth in the world's developing nations, according to a new study co-authored by an MIT economist.

Division of labor offers insight into the evolution of multicellular life
Dividing tasks among different individuals is a more efficient way to get things done, whether you are an ant, a honeybee or a human.

Study compares rate of death following diabetes diagnosis among normal weight and overweight adults
Participants in a study who were normal weight at the time of a diagnosis of diabetes experienced higher rates of total and noncardiovascular death compared with those who were overweight or obese at diabetes diagnosis.

New UC Santa Barbara-based project to study contaminants in urban water environment
What contaminants lurk in the urban subsurface, and what happens to them once they're there?

Balance and strength training can prevent falls in older people
Balance and strength training that is integrated into everyday activities can reduce the number of falls among older people by almost a third, finds a study published on today.

GW School of Nursing receives nearly $1 million grant to diversify nursing workforce
The George Washington University School of Nursing was recently awarded a three year grant totaling nearly one million dollars from the US Health Resources and Services Administration in support of the school's Success in Nursing Education project, which aims to increase the number and diversity of nursing professionals, specifically African-American, Asian, Hispanic, Native American, male and economically disadvantaged students in the Washington DC, and rural Virginia areas.

NASA satellites revealed Tropical Storm Ernesto's strongest side
Satellite data helps forecasters see where the strongest part of a tropical cyclone is located, and NASA's Aqua satellite noticed Ernesto's strongest storms were on the eastern side yesterday. 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