Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

September 14, 2012
Environment: Pooling information to combat the threat of alien species in Europe
EASIN, the European Alien Species Information Network, launched today by the European Commission's in-house science service, the Joint Research Centre, takes a first step towards answering these and other questions related to 16,000 alien species currently reported all over Europe.

Simple tool may help evaluate risk for violence among patients with mental illness
Mental health professionals, who often are tasked with evaluating and managing the risk of violence by their patients, may benefit from a simple tool to more accurately make a risk assessment, according to a recent study conducted at the University of California, San Francisco.

23andMe opens its API to developers
23andMe application programming interface will open to third-party developers on Sept.

Oil from algae closer to reality through studies by unique collaboration of scientists
A team of researchers that has been working on getting fuel-grade oil out of algae may be within four years of a near-commercial-scale production level.

China's nuclear dilemma
An expert assessment of China's nuclear weapons strategy highlights the risk of escalation to nuclear war from a conflict beginning with conventional weapons, due to the unusual structure of the nation's military.

Probing matters of the heart
Biologists from MIT and the University of California at San Francisco have outlined how the interaction of genes, proteins that bind DNA, and molecules that modify those genes and proteins, direct the development of stem cells into mature heart cells.

Passive smoking also affects neurodevelopment in babies
A new study shows that newborns that have been exposed to nicotine from both active and passive smoking mothers show poor physiological, sensory, motor and attention responses.

NTU and University of Warwick boost brainpower in global neuroscience research
Nanyang Technological University has linked up with the University of Warwick, United Kingdom, to launch a joint global program for neuroscience research.

Maternal drinking during pregnancy can damage the earliest fetal learning
Habituation refers to the ability of an organism to stop responding to repeated stimulation.

Feeling stressed by your job? Don't blame your employer, study shows
Work stress, job satisfaction and health problems due to high stress have more to do with genes than you might think, according to research by Timothy Judge, professor of management at the University of Notre Dame's Mendoza College of Business.

Radar measurements of highest precision
Scientists of KIT and Ruhr-Universität Bochum have reached a record precision in radar distance measurements.

Canadian homes a kill zone for up to 22 million birds a year
University of Alberta researchers estimate a staggering 22 million birds die from colliding with windows of homes across Canada annually.

NASA examines very dangerous Super Typhoon Sanba
NASA's TRMM satellite examined super soaking Super Typhoon Sanba and powerful hot towering thunderstorms around its center and rain falling at a rate as high as three inches per hour.

Obesity more common among rural residents than urban counterparts, study finds
Christie Befort, Ph.D., assistant professor of preventive medicine and public health at the University of Kansas Medical Center, believes there may be two significant reasons why rural residents are more likely to be overweight: Cultural diet and physical isolation.

Cervical cancer and pre-cancer cervical growths require single HPV protein
Human papillomavirus (HPV) has long been implicated in cervical cancer, but details of how it happens have remained a mystery.

UMass Amherst sleep researchers study value of preschool naps
Neuroscientist Rebecca Spencer at the University of Massachusetts Amherst has received a five-year, $2 million grant from NIH's Heart, Lung and Blood Institute to significantly advance knowledge about how napping and sleep affect memory, behavior and emotions in preschoolers.

Could bioscience research bring more Olympic and Paralympic medals
Some of the UK's leading bioscience and sports researchers have teamed up to help improve training for elite athletes, thanks to special funding from the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council and UK Sport with additional money from the Economic and Social Research Council.

New tech stymied by copyright law
From Napster to iTunes to Pandora, the methods by which the public can obtain and share music have rapidly progressed.

Surgery more profound effect than anesthesia on brain pathology, cognition in Alzheimer's mice
Surgery, rather than anesthesia, has the more profound impact on a dementia-vulnerable brain.

The most stable laser in the world
A laser with a frequency stability so far unequaled: This is the result of a research cooperation of the Physikalisch-Technische Bundesanstalt within the scope of the Excellence Cluster QUEST with colleagues from the American NIST/JILA.

Getting (drugs) under your skin
Using ultrasound waves, MIT engineers have found a way to enhance the permeability of skin to drugs, making transdermal drug delivery more efficient.

Canadian otolaryngologist wins international award
For only the second time in the history of the American Academy of Otolaryngology, a Canadian physician has won the AAO - Head and Neck Surgery Distinguished Service Award.

Military vision research symposium focuses on visual fallout from war
Eye injuries in war have changed - and increased in number - as weapons, tactics, technology and strategies have evolved.

University of Rochester scientist awarded $630,000 prize for 'major breakthrough' in vision science
David Williams, a faculty member of the University of Rochester's Institute of Optics, director of its Center for Visual Science, and dean for research in Arts, Science, and Engineering, will receive the António Champalimaud Vision Award at a ceremony today in Lisbon, Portugal.

X-rays reveal the self-defence mechanisms of bacteria
A research group at Aarhus University has gained unique insight into how bacteria control the amount of toxin in their cells.

45 percent of layoff victims, despite anger, would return to former employer
With an 8.1 percent August unemployment rate and 12.5 million Americans out of work, a new Temple University study examines a neglected area of research: how the unemployment process impacts the willingness of those laid off to endorse or return to their previous employer.

Symptoms of alcohol abuse, not dependence, may better reflect family risk for alcohol use disorders
Individuals with alcohol use disorders (AUDs) vary widely in their age of onset of use, patterns of drinking, and symptom profiles.

Scripps Research Institute scientists show protein linked to hunger also implicated in alcoholism
Researchers at the Scripps Research Institute have found new links between a protein that controls our urge to eat and brain cells involved in the development of alcoholism.

ESC: Prevention without borders
The European Society of Cardiology will deliver an educational program at the 67th Annual Congress of the Brazilian Society of Cardiology.

Abstinence from alcohol plus physical exercise can help reclaim bone loss due to alcoholism
Alcoholism is known to cause osteoporosis, or reduced bone mineral density (BMD).

NASA's Aqua satellite sees Tropical Storm Kristy weaken, other system developing
The Eastern Pacific Ocean has become 'tropically' alive on NASA satellite data today, Sept.

Cystic fibrosis patients of low SES are less likely to be accepted for lung transplant
Adult cystic fibrosis patients of low socioeconomic status have a greater chance of not being accepted for lung transplant after undergoing initial evaluation, according to a new study.

New NIH/NHGRI grants to harness nanoscale technologies to cut DNA sequencing costs
Grants of almost $19 million will help to develop technologies to dramatically reduce the cost of DNA sequencing, the National Human Genome Research Institute (NHGRI), part of the National Institutes of Health, announced today.

Roman military camp dating back to conquest of Gaul throws light on part of world history
In the vicinity of Hermeskeil, a small town some 30 kilometers southeast of the city of Trier in the Hunsrueck region in the German federal state of Rhineland-Palatinate, archaeologists from Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz have confirmed the location of the oldest Roman military fortification known in Germany to date.

X-rays unravel mysterious degradation of a Van Gogh painting
Synchrotron X-ray analysis has identified why parts of a Van Gogh painting changed colour over time: a supposedly protective varnish applied after the master's death has made some bright yellow flowers turn to orange-grey.

Scientists planning next particle super collider to meet at UT Arlington
The International Workshop on Future Linear Colliders is being held Oct.

UC Riverside biologist named a Leadership Fellow
Richard Cardullo, a professor of biology at UC Riverside, has been selected as a Vision and Change Leadership Fellow by the Partnership for Undergraduate Life Sciences Education (PULSE) program, a joint initiative of the NSF, HHMI, and the NIH.

CRF announces late breaking trials and first report investigations to be presented at TCT 2012
Transcatheter Cardiovascular Therapeutics (TCT) is the annual scientific symposium of the Cardiovascular Research Foundation.

NASA's TRMM satellite sees Nadine still struggling to become a hurricane
Tropical Storm Nadine's life story during the week of Sept.

New test to crack down on sporting drugs-cheat test
Scientists from three UK universities have developed a new test to catch drugs-cheats in sport.

Researchers find our inner reptile hearts
Researchers have finally succeeded in showing that the spongy tissue in reptile hearts is the forerunner of the complex hearts of both birds and mammals.

Study shows wildfires' positive and negative economic impacts
Despite the disruptions they cause, large wildfires are a mixed economic bag for nearby communities, according to findings from a research project by the University of Oregon's Ecosystem Workforce Program and its collaborators.

'Memristors' based on transparent electronics offer technology of the future
The transparent electronics that were pioneered at Oregon State University may find one of their newest applications as a next-generation replacement for some uses of non-volatile flash memory, a multi-billion dollar technology nearing its limit of small size and information storage capacity.

CAMH illuminates roles of novel epigenetic chemical in the brain
Researchers from the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health have identified a new role of a chemical involved in controlling the genes underlying memory and learning.

Environment: Speaking the same language on noise exposure
Quantifying noise exposure will be significantly easier thanks to a new set of common noise assessment methods published today.

Learning faster with neurodegenerative disease
People who bear the genetic mutation for Huntington's disease learn faster than healthy people.

Berkeley Lab scientists create first 3-D model of a protein critical to embryo development
Berkeley Lab researchers have constructed the first detailed and complete picture of a protein complex that is tied to human birth defects as well as the progression of many forms of cancer.

Whole-genome scan helps select best treatment for childhood cancer
A whole-genome scan to identify large-scale chromosomal damage can help doctors choose the best treatment option for children with neuroblastoma, one of the most common types of childhood cancer, finds an international collaboration jointly led by the Institute of Cancer Research, London.

$8.9 million NIH grant to study genomic link to premature heart disease
Researchers at Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center are leading a four-year, $8.9 million national project to identify variations in the human genome and corresponding changes in the arterial proteins associated with premature development of atherosclerosis.

Neurobiologist Rodal wins New Innovator award
For people suffering with debilitating diseases such ALS or Alzheimer's, simple tasks can be a struggle.

New insights on cell competition
Scientists from the Spanish National Cancer Research Centre describe how natural selection also occurs at the cellular level, and how our body's tissues and organs strive to retain the best cells in their ranks in order to fend off disease processes.

Discovery of essential genes for drug-resistant bacteria reveals new, high-value drug targets
Biomedical scientists collaborating on translational research at two Buffalo institutions are reporting the discovery of a novel, and heretofore unrecognized, set of genes essential for the growth of potentially lethal, drug-resistant bacteria.

Dr. Chiaravalloti of Kessler Foundation comments on trends in rehabilitation research in MS
Nancy Chiaravalloti, Ph.D., an expert in cognitive rehabilitation research, authored two commentaries on trends in multiple sclerosis research.

Trade unions still fail to lure women leaders, study finds
There is little doubt that Frances O'Grady has made history as the first woman to be elected General Secretary of the Trades Union Congress in September 2012. 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