Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

May 13, 2013
Salt levels in food still dangerously high
The dangerously high salt levels in processed food and fast food remain unchanged, despite numerous calls from health agencies for the food industry to voluntarily reduce sodium.

New computer-based tool measures readability for different readers
Today most public services involve electronic communication, which requires that people are able to read relatively well.

Study identifies possible new acute leukemia marker, treatment target
A study has identified microRNA-155 as a new independent prognostic marker and treatment target in patients with acute myeloid leukemia that has normal-looking chromosomes under the microscope (that is, cytogenetically normal acute myeloid leukemia).

Productivity increases with species diversity
Environments containing species that are distantly related to one another are more productive than those containing closely related species, according to new research from the University of Toronto Scarborough.

Bix of Sanders-Brown receives NIH funding for stroke research
The new funding from the NIH will enable Bix and his team to investigate the effects of a newly identified stroke treatment on brain tissue regeneration, to investigate factors influencing generation and survival of post-stroke generated neurons, and to investigate novel mechanisms in neuritogenesis and neurite extension.

Breakthrough in how pancreatic cancer cells ingest nutrients points to new drug target
In a landmark cancer study published online in Nature, researchers at NYU School of Medicine have unraveled a longstanding mystery about how pancreatic tumor cells feed themselves, opening up new therapeutic possibilities for a notoriously lethal disease with few treatment options.

Western Indian Ocean earthquake and tsunami hazard potential greater than previously thought
Earthquakes similar in magnitude to the 2004 Sumatra earthquake could occur in an area beneath the Arabian Sea at the Makran subduction zone, according to recent research published in Geophysical Research Letters.

Job stress, unhealthy lifestyle increase risk of coronary artery disease
People with job stress and an unhealthy lifestyle are at higher risk of coronary artery disease than people who have job stress but lead healthy lifestyles, found a study published in CMAJ.

Living close to major road may impair kidney function
Living close to a major road may impair kidney function -- itself a risk factor for heart disease and stroke -- and so help contribute to the known impact of air pollution on cardiovascular risk, suggests research published online in the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health.

The mechanism that puts the curl in the curling stone revealed
Researchers from Uppsala University in Sweden can now reveal the mechanism behind the curved path of a curling stone.

Serotonin mediates exercise-induced generation of new neurons
Mice that exercise in running wheels exhibit increased neurogenesis in the brain.

Energy supply from hydropower projects depends on rainforest conservation
Research published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences shows that conserving rainforests in the Amazon River Basin will increase the amount of electricity that hydropower projects in the area can produce.

NASA sees controlled fires in Southern Australia
Today's image of southern Australia showing New South Wales and Victoria shows a series of controlled fires.

Renaissance in new drugs for rare diseases: Report in world's largest scientific society magazine
Once famously described as

Individual and small-chain restaurant meals exceed recommended daily calorie needs
Tufts University researchers analyzed meals from independent and small-chain restaurants, which account for approximately 50 percent of the nation's restaurant locations.

Family trees for yeast cells
Researchers at the Institute for Systems Biology in Seattle (USA) and the Luxembourg Centre for Systems Biomedicine (LCSB) at the University of Luxembourg have jointly developed a revolutionary method to analyse the genomes of yeast families.

Bird flu in live poultry markets are the source of viruses causing human infections
On 31 March 2013, the Chinese National Health and Family Planning Commission announced human cases of novel H7N9 influenza virus infections.

Most Michigan parents, grandparents prefer research hospitals for pediatric care
Four out of five parents and grandparents in Michigan say they'd rather take children to a hospital that does medical research for children than one that does not.

Making a greener lawnmower
Inspired by two of their fathers, who work cutting lawns and driving a truck, a team of University of California, Riverside Bourns College of Engineering students have created a device that attaches to a lawnmower and significantly cuts its harmful emissions.

Study examines use of creative arts therapies among patients with cancer
Creative arts therapies can improve anxiety, depression, pain symptoms and quality of life among cancer patients, although the effect was reduced during follow-up in a study by Timothy W.

Land management options outlined to address cheatgrass invasion
A study published today suggests that overgrazing and other factors increase the severity of cheatgrass invasion in sagebrush steppe, one of North America's most endangered ecosystems.

When deciding how to bet, less detailed information may be better
People are worse at predicting whether a sports team will win, lose, or tie when they bet on the final score than when they bet on the overall outcome, according to a new study published in Psychological Science, a journal of the Association for Psychological Science.

Grammar errors? The brain detects them even when you are unaware
Your brain often works on autopilot when it comes to grammar.

CLABSI prevention efforts result in up to 200,000 infections prevented in intensive care units
New research from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that as many as 200,000 central line-associated bloodstream infections have been prevented among patients in intensive care units since 1990.

Saving the parrots: Texas A&M team sequences genome of endangered macaw birds
In a groundbreaking move that provides new insight into avian evolution, biology and conservation, researchers at Texas A&M University have successfully sequenced the complete genome of a Scarlet macaw for the first time.

Flu in pregnancy may quadruple child's risk for bipolar disorder
Flu in pregnant mothers has been linked to a nearly fourfold increased risk that their child might develop bipolar disorder in adulthood.

Agent Orange exposure linked to life-threatening prostate cancer
A new analysis has found a link between exposure to Agent Orange and lethal forms of prostate cancer among US Veterans.

Texas A&M study: Prehistoric ear bones could lead to evolutionary answers
The tiniest bones in the human body -- the bones of the middle ear -- could provide huge clues about our evolution and the development of modern-day humans, according to a study by a team of researchers that include a Texas A&M University anthropologist.

Study updates estimates, trends for childhood exposure to violence, crime, abuse
A study by David Finkelhor, Ph.D., of the University of New Hampshire, and colleagues updates estimates and trends for childhood exposure to a range of violence, crime and abuse victimizations.

Scientists use crowd-sourcing to help map global CO2 emissions
Climate science researchers from Arizona State University are launching a first-of-its kind online

Beaumont cardiologist Kavitha Chinnaiyan, M.D., receives excellence in research award
Kavitha Chinnaiyan, M.D., director of Advanced Cardiac Imaging Education at Beaumont Hospital, Royal Oak, has received the Frank J.

Openly gay: Does it affect performance appraisal?
Although knowing an actor is gay significantly affected ratings of his masculinity, there was no significant effect on ratings of his acting performance, researchers say.

Reversing paralysis with a restorative gel
A team of Tel Aviv University researchers, led by Dr.

Receptor proteins could hold clues to antibiotic resistance in MRSA
Scientists at Imperial College London have identified four new proteins that act as receptors for an essential signalling molecule in bacteria such as MRSA.

NASA sees the remnants of Tropical Cyclone Jamala fading
Tropical Cyclone Jamala ran into some harsh atmospheric conditions on May 11 in the Southern Indian Ocean and vertical wind shear tore the storm apart.

Brain frontal lobes not sole centre of human intelligence
Human intelligence cannot be explained by the size of the brain's frontal lobes, say researchers.

Study defines level of dengue virus needed for transmission
Researchers have identified the dose of dengue virus in human blood that is required to infect mosquitoes when they bite.

Salk scientists develop drug that slows Alzheimer's in mice
A drug developed by scientists at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies, known as J147, reverses memory deficits and slows Alzheimer's disease in aged mice following short-term treatment.

Physicists light 'magnetic fire' to reveal energy's path
NYU physicists have uncovered how energy is released and dispersed in magnetic materials in a process akin to the spread of forest fires, a finding that has the potential to deepen our understanding of self-sustained chemical reactions.

Routine screening for depression not recommended for adults with no apparent symptoms of depression
For adults with no apparent symptoms of depression, routine screening is not recommended in primary care settings because of the lack of high-quality evidence on the benefits and harms of screening for depression, according to new evidence-based guidelines from the Canadian Task Force on Preventive Health Care published in CMAJ.

Scientists find impact of open-ocean industrial fishing within centuries of bird bones
The impact of industrial fishing on coastal ecosystems has been studied for many years.

From ocean to land: The fishy origins of our hips
New research has revealed that the evolution of the complex, weight-bearing hips of walking animals from the basic hips of fish was a much simpler process than previously thought.

He wrote the book of love
Shakespeare had it right, of course: the course of true love never has run smooth.

Early formula use helps some mothers breastfeed longer
Recent public health efforts have focused extensively on reducing the amount of formula babies are given in the hospital after birth.

Leap in leukemia treatment reported by Dartmouth researchers
Doctors at Dartmouth-Hitchcock's Norris Cotton Cancer Center have found a combination of drugs to potentially treat chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) more effectively.

Alligator stem cell study gives clues to tooth regeneration
Alligators may help scientists learn how to stimulate tooth regeneration in people, according to new research led by the Keck School of Medicine of the University of Southern California (USC).

Inter-university telecollaboration to improve academic results
Ana Sánchez and José Miguel Blanco, lecturers in the Department of Computer Languages and Systems of the UPV/EHU-University of the Basque Country, together with Arturo Jaime and César Domínguez, lecturers in the Department of Mathematics and Computing at the University of La Rioja, have developed an experience between the two universities by systematically incorporating telecollaboration.

Photonic quantum computers: A brighter future than ever
Harnessing the unique features of the quantum world promises a dramatic speed-up in information processing as compared to the fastest classical machines.

Research letter evaluates calories, fat, and sodium content in restaurant meals
A research letter by Mary R. L'Abbe, Ph.D., of the University of Toronto, Canada, and colleagues examined the nutritional profile of breakfast, lunch, and dinner meals from sit-down restaurants.

Urbanization and surface warming in eastern China
Urbanization is one of the most significant processes in land use/cover change.

Researchers discover master regulator that drives majority of lymphoma
A soon-to-be-tested class of drug inhibitors were predicted to help a limited number of patients with B-cell lymphomas with mutations affecting the EZH2 protein.

Study finds inconsistent and slow reduction in sodium levels in processed and restaurant's food
A study by Michael F. Jacobson, Ph.D., of the Center for Science in the Public Interest, Washington, D.C., and colleagues suggest voluntary reductions in sodium levels in processed and restaurant foods is inconsistent and slow.

'I care about nature, but ...'
Many entrepreneurs claim that they care about sustainability, yet they make decisions that are harmful to the environment.

Researchers develop smart phone app to help weight loss
Researchers at the University of Liverpool have developed a smart phone app that helps users lose weight by carefully recording their food consumption.

Solar panels as inexpensive as paint? It's possible due to research at UB, elsewhere
Solar panels could become as inexpensive as paint as researchers develop the next generation of photovoltaics.

Non-smoking hotel rooms still expose occupants to tobacco smoke
Non-smoking rooms in hotels operating a partial smoking ban don't protect their occupants from tobacco smoke, reveals research published online in Tobacco Control.

New global study pinpoints main causes of childhood diarrheal diseases, suggests effective solutions
A new international study published in The Lancet provides the clearest picture yet of the impact and most common causes of diarrheal diseases, the second leading killer of young children globally, after pneumonia.

The molecular basis of strawberry aroma
You know that summer is here when juicy red strawberries start to appear on the shelves.

Circadian clock gene rhythms in brain altered in depression, UC Irvine Health study finds
UC Irvine Health researchers have helped discover that genes controlling circadian clock rhythms are profoundly altered in the brains of people with severe depression.

Binghamton researcher studies oldest fossil hominin ear bones ever recovered
A new study, led by a Binghamton University anthropologist and published this week by the National Academy of Sciences, could shed new light on the earliest existence of humans.

Searching for clandestine graves with geophysical tools
Scientists researching geophysical techniques to detect hidden mass graves of atrocity victims are preparing to expand their studies to Colombia.

Higher child marriage rates associated with higher maternal and infant mortality
Countries in which girls are commonly married before the age of 18 have significantly higher rates of maternal and infant mortality, report researchers in the current online issue of the journal Violence Against Women.

A handful of pathogens are causing most diarrheal deaths and illness in children worldwide and should be targeted
New research in the Lancet reports that just four pathogens -- rotavirus, Cryptosporidium, enterotoxigenic Escherichia coli producing heat-stable toxin, and Shigella -- are causing most cases of moderate-to-severe diarrhea among children living in the poorest countries of the world.

MOOCs FORUM journal debuts summer 2013
MOOCs FORUM, a new journal, is the only publication dedicated exclusively to the development, design, and deployment of the game-changing Massive Open Online Courses.

Using earthquake sensors to track endangered whales
Oceanographers analyzed more than 300,000 fin-whale calls recorded by seafloor seismometers and recreated more than 150 fin-whale paths off the Pacific Northwest coast.

IEEE-USA urges Senate to reject expanding H-1B visa program
IEEE-USA is urging the Senate Judiciary Committee to reject amendments to the comprehensive immigration bill that would increase H-1B temporary visa numbers, weaken safeguards for US and foreign workers and facilitate the outsourcing of American jobs.

Low carbon fuels for Canada's cement production
Researchers at Queen's University are collaborating with Lafarge Canada Inc.

Educating women may improve food security in Africa
African women have a key role in their families' food security.

NASA sees a strengthening Tropical Cyclone Mahasen
The first tropical cyclone in the Northern Indian Ocean this season has been getting better organized as seen in NASA satellite imagery.

How can advanced imaging studies enhance diabetes management?
Advances in noninvasive imaging technology can assess important changes in fat composition and distribution in the body that may affect the metabolic complications and diseases associated with diabetes, including cardiovascular disease and cancer.

New method of finding planets scores its first discovery
Detecting alien worlds presents a significant challenge since they are small, faint, and close to their stars.

The threat of 'welfare tourism' is exaggerated -- No negative effects on Swedish economy
Europe is in the middle of a lively debate on so-called welfare tourism, as exemplified by British Prime Minister David Cameron's recent remarks on labor immigration from the new EU member states.

Seabird bones reveal changes in open-ocean food chain
Remains of endangered Hawaiian petrels -- both ancient and modern -- show how drastically today's open seas fish menu has changed.

To suppress or to explore? Emotional strategy may influence anxiety
When trouble approaches, what do you do? Run for the hills?

Out of sync with the world: Body clocks of depressed people are altered at cell level
Every cell in our bodies runs on a 24-hour clock, tuned to the night-day, light-dark cycles that have ruled us since the dawn of humanity.

UEF to host the secretariat of the Association for Borderland Studies in 2013-2017
The Karelian Institute at the University of Eastern Finland will be hosting the secretariat of the Association for Borderland Studies, ABS, from 2013 to 2017.

First X-class solar flare of 2013
On May 12, 2013, the sun emitted a significant solar flare, peaking at 10 p.m.

Annals of Internal Medicine tip sheet for May 14, 2013
Below is information about articles being published in the May 14 issue of Annals of Internal Medicine.

Improving memory in Alzheimer's disease mice
A novel drug candidate, J147, is able to reverse memory deficits and improve several aspects of brain function in mice with advanced symptoms of Alzheimer's disease, finds research in BioMed Central's open-access journal Alzheimer's Research & Therapy.

GVSU-MAREC receives grant to study solar thermal systems
Grand Valley State University's Michigan Alternative and Renewable Energy Center received a grant from the Michigan Energy Office to study solar thermal system costs and efficiency improvements for use in Michigan's climate.

Technical inspections of vehicles prevent 170 fatalities per year
Technical Inspections of Vehicle (Inspecciones Técnicas de Vehículos - ITV) prevent 170 fatalities per year, nearly 11,000 injuries and at least 11,000 traffic accidents.

Tumor-activated protein promotes cancer spread
Researchers at the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine and UC San Diego Moores Cancer Center report that cancers physically alter cells in the lymphatic system -- a network of vessels that transports and stores immune cells throughout the body -- to promote the spread of disease, a process called metastasis.

How much a single cell breathes
How active a living cell is can be seen by its oxygen consumption. 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