Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

March 22, 2013
'Water Security': Experts propose a UN definition on which much depends
Calls have been growing for the UN Security Council to include water issues on its agenda.

Atherosclerosis: Specific microRNAs promote inflammation
Atherosclerosis, an inflammatory reaction, is at the root of the most common forms of cardiovascular disease.

Springer and Politecnico di Milano launch book series
Springer and Politecnico di Milano will partner to publish a new book series entitled POLIMI SpringerBriefs.

Scientists discover layer of liquified molten rock in Earth's mantle
Scientists have discovered a layer of liquified molten rock in Earth's mantle that may be responsible for the sliding motions of the planet's massive tectonic plates.

Hip replacement reduces heart failure, depression and diabetes risk
In addition to improving life quality and diminishing pain, total hip replacement is associated with reduced mortality, heart failure, depression and diabetes rates in Medicare patients with osteoarthritis, according to a new study presented today at the 2013 Annual Meeting of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons.

Virginia Tech engineers explain physics of fluids some 100 years after original discovery
Intuition says two or more jets of fluid should coalesce into a single stream of fluid, but that is not always the case.

Modest changes in military dining facilities promoted healthier eating
The prevalence of obesity within the military is currently 13 percent.

New chemo drug gentler on fertility, tougher on cancer
A new gentler chemotherapy drug in the form of nanoparticles has been designed by scientists to be less toxic to a young woman's fertility but extra tough on cancer.

Huge and widespread volcanic eruptions triggered the end-Triassic extinction
Some 200 million years ago, an increase in atmospheric CO2 caused acidification of the oceans and global warming that killed off 76 percent of marine and terrestrial species on Earth.

Alley receives AAAS Public Engagement Award
Richard B. Alley, Evan Pugh Professor of Geosciences, was named the recipient of the 2012 American Association for the Advancement of Science Public Engagement in Science Award.

WSU researchers to study effect of fatigue on attention
Researchers at Washington State University have received a three-year, $895,558 grant from the US Department of Defense's Office of Naval Research to study the effects of fatigue on attention, decision making and their underlying biology.

NSF response to external panel's recommendations for streamlining scientific logistics in Antarctica
The National Science Foundation has issued a summary response to the recommendations of an external panel of experts that was charged with advising the agency on how to improve and streamline its logistical capabilities to more efficiently support world-class Antarctic science in coming decades.

Advances in inflammatory bowel disease -- what's new, what's next
Every five years, the Crohn's & Colitis Foundation of America (CCFA) gathers top researchers in inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) to set the research agenda for the next five years.

Removing orbital debris with less risk
Global Aerospace Corporation announced today that the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics is publishing an article entitled

Making axons branch and grow to help nerve regeneration after injury
One molecule makes nerve cells grow longer. Another one makes them grow branches.

Certain bacteria suppress production of toxic shock toxin: Probiotic potential looms
Certain Streptococci increase their production of toxic shock syndrome toxin 1, sometimes to potentially dangerous levels, when aerobic bacteria are present in the vagina.

UofL to host Southern Regional Council on Statistics Summer Research Conference
As a way to continue their participation in the International Year of Statistics, the Department of Bioinformatics and Biostatistics is hosting the Southern Regional Council on Statistics Summer Research Conference June 2-5, 2013 at Montgomery Bell State Park in Tennessee.

Live tracking of vulnerable South Atlantic seabirds
Real-time information showing the locations of the threatened frigatebird is now available online thanks to a new Darwin Initiative funded study led by the University of Exeter and Ascension Island Government Conservation Department.

Nerve regeneration research and therapy may get boost from new discovery
A new mechanism for guiding the growth of nerves that involves cell-death machinery has been found by scientists at the University of Nevada, Reno that may bring advances in neurological medicine and research.

Alterations in brain activity in children at risk of schizophrenia predate onset of symptoms
Research from the University of North Carolina has shown that children at risk of developing schizophrenia have brains that function differently than those not at risk.

Physically active health-care providers more likely to give physical activity counseling
Physically active healthcare providers are significantly more likely to advise their patients to be active.

Scientists awarded £3M to study the way Northwest European seas absorb carbon
Scientists at the University of Liverpool are embarking on a series of research cruises to understand the impact of climate warming on the ecosystems of the seas surrounding Northwest Europe.

NSF names electrical engineering researcher Mung Chiang its Alan T. Waterman awardee for 2013
The National Science Foundation will present Mung Chiang of Princeton University with this year's Alan T.

Resilience, safety and security of UK food imports highlighted in new Global Food Security report
A new report has highlighted issues surrounding global food systems and the importation of food into the UK.

Kessler Foundation director honored for achievements in science
Nancy Chiaravalloti, Ph.D., Director of Traumatic Brain Injury Research and Neuropsychology & Neuroscience Research at Kessler Foundation, was honored at Hudson County's 2013 Women's History Month Ceremony on March 19.

Invasive species: Understanding the threat before it's too late
Catching rides on cargo ships and fishing boats, many invasive species are now covering our shorelines and compromising the existence of our native marine life.

Index awards winners 2013 announced
Pakistani schoolgirl Malala Yousafzai, Greek journalist Kostas Vaxevanis, Syrian internet activist Bassel Khartabil and South African photographer Zanele Muholi were honoured at the Index on Censorship Freedom of Expression Awards in London last night.

Pathologists identify patterns of mutations to help inform design of future trials
Molecular driven therapeutic targets have resulted in a paradigm shift in the treatment of advanced lung adenocarcinoma.

Genetic analysis saves major apple-producing region of Washington state
A genetic analysis by University of Notre Dame researchers saved a major apple-producing region of Washington state.

Malaria drug treatment breakthrough
An international study, involving researchers from Griffith University's Eskitis Institute, has discovered a molecule which could form the basis of powerful new anti-malaria drugs.

Acoustic monitoring of Atlantic cod reveals clues to spawning behavior
For decades researchers have recorded sounds from whales and other marine mammals, using a variety of methods including passive acoustic monitoring to better understand how these animals use sound to interact with each other and with the environment.

Men and women get sick in different ways
A new article titled

Outdoor education helps minority students close gap in environmental literacy
It's time to take middle school students outside for environmental lessons, a North Carolina State University study suggests.

Study highlights variations in spinal component costs
In a study, presented today at the 2013 Annual Meeting of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, researchers obtained and compared the hospital purchasing records from 45 academic medical centers on the unit costs and volume of spinal products -- pedicle screws, anterior cervical plates and posterior interbody cages -- purchased from a total of seven vendors.

Before dinosaurs' era, volcanic eruptions triggered mass extinction
More than 200 million years ago, a massive extinction decimated 76 percent of marine and terrestrial species, marking the end of the Triassic period and the onset of the Jurassic.

It all hinges on the bottom line
Determining the financial health of a company is no easy task.

Smoking affects fracture healing
In a new study presented today at the 2013 Annual Meeting of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, researchers reviewed existing literature on smoking and the healing of fractures involving long bones (bones that are longer than they are wide).

Penn study finds smoking prolongs fracture healing
A new study from the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania corroborates early evidence showing that cigarette smoking leads to longer healing times and an increased rate of post-operative complication and infection for patients sustaining fractures or traumatic injuries to their bone.

Epigenetics studies take root in plants
Biologist Mary Gehring, Ph.D. is The Pew Charitable Trusts' featured biomedical researcher of the month for her creative research on epigenetics in plants.

Did evolution give us inflammatory disease?
Researchers demonstrate that some variants in our genes which could put a person at risk for inflammatory diseases -- such as multiple sclerosis, Crohn's disease or rheumatoid arthritis -- have been the target of natural selection over the course of human history.

When a gene is worth 2
In the latest issue of The Plant Cell journal, a group of scientists at the Instituto Gulbenkian de Ciência discovered a gene -- ZIFL1 -- that produces two different proteins with completely distinct locations and functions in the plant.

Study shows resources giveaway in Latin America; Outdated model tramples human rights, environment
A new study reveals that governments in Latin America have returned to natural resources extraction to fuel development -- while paying scant attention to the impact mining, oil exploration and other activities have on the environment or on the people who own the land.

Additional research must be done to ensure safety of pit latrines, new study says
Pit latrines are one of the most common human excreta disposal systems globally, and their use is on the rise as countries aim to meet the sanitation-related target of the Millennium Development Goals.

Study finds long nerve grafts restore function in patients with brachial plexus injury
A study by researchers at Hospital for Special Surgery in New York City challenges a widely held belief that long nerve grafts do poorly in adults with an axillary nerve injury.

Delay in shifting gaze linked to early brain development in autism
At seven months of age, children who are later diagnosed with autism take a split second longer to shift their gaze during a task measuring eye movements and visual attention than do typically developing infants of the same age, according to researchers supported by the National Institutes of Health.

Nerve mapping technology improves surgery for compressed nerves
Nerve mapping technology allows surgeons to determine whether surgery has been effective for relieving pressure from compressed nerves, which often function poorly and cause sciatica or pain and weakness in muscles supplied by the nerve.

Computer simulations yield clues to how cells interact with surroundings
Berkeley Lab scientists have developed a computer model of a protein that helps cells interact with their surroundings.

APL novel method accurately predicts disease outbreaks
Scientists from the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory have developed a way to accurately predict dengue fever outbreaks several weeks before they occur. 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