Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

July 11, 2013
Antarctic glacier calves iceberg one-fourth size of Rhode Island
This week a European Earth-observing satellite confirmed that a large iceberg broke off of Pine Island Glacier, one of Antarctica's largest and fastest moving ice streams.

Why do we enjoy listening to sad music?
Sad music might actually evoke positive emotions reveals a new study by Japanese researchers published in the open-access journal Frontiers in Psychology.

Brain & Behavior Research Foundation to honor 7 young mental health researchers
The Brain & Behavior Research Foundation will honor seven young mental health researchers for their exceptional research on Fri.

Molecular discovery puts cancer treatment in a new perspective
Researchers from the University of Copenhagen and the National Institutes of Health have obtained ground-breaking new knowledge about proteases - important enzymes which, among other things, play a role in the development of cancer cells.

Alternative biofuel crops to fuel the future of the poor
The World Agroforestry Centre (ICRAF) and the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) have launched the IFAD-ICRAF Programme for the Development of Alternative Biofuel Crops, an initiative focused on providing clean energy for rural communities, enhancing local food security and increasing subsistence farmers' resilience to climate change.

Aflibercept in colorectal cancer: Indication of minor added benefit
Aflibercept prolongs overall survival in certain patients with colorectal cancer, but also has more severe side effects than comparator therapy.

Geothermal power facility induces earthquakes, study finds
An analysis of earthquakes in the area around the Salton Sea Geothermal Field in southern California has found a strong correlation between seismic activity and operations for production of geothermal power, which involve pumping water into and out of an underground reservoir.

Scientists develop ground-breaking new method of 'starving' cancer cells
A University of Southampton Professor, in collaboration with colleagues at the BC Cancer Agency Research Centre, have discovered a novel way of killing cancer cells.

Metastatic pancreatic, primary breast cancer have common growth mechanisms, study suggests
A recently discovered form of the protein that triggers blood clotting plays a critical role in promoting the growth of metastatic pancreatic cancer and primary breast cancer, according to the cumulative findings from two new scientific manuscripts published online ahead of print in the International Journal of Cancer and PNAS.

Health-care system factors may have less influence on kidney-related racial disparities
Among patients with kidney disease who received specialized pre-dialysis care in a universal healthcare system, blacks experienced faster disease progression than whites, according to a study appearing in an upcoming issue of the Clinical Journal of the American Society of Nephrology.

Discovery of a strange new snow scorpionfly species in Alaska helped by Facebook
Researchers from the University of Alaska Fairbanks (Derek Sikes and Jill Stockbridge) discovered a strange new insect on Prince of Wales Island, Alaska.

Second ACL injuries 6 times more likely after reconstruction
Anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction surgery is a common knee injury procedure, but the overall incidence rate of having to go through it again within 24 months is 6 times greater than someone who has never had an ACL tear, according to researchers presenting their work today at the American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine's Annual Meeting in Chicago, IL.

Researchers develop systems that convert ordinary language to code
Systems that can convert written specifications into working code in a few narrow cases could be generalized to other tasks.

Recession led teens to focus on social problems and the environment
During the Great Recession, high school students became more concerned about others and the environment, psychologists at San Diego State University and University of California, Los Angeles report today.

NASA Hubble finds a true blue planet
Astronomers making visible-light observations with NASA's Hubble Space Telescope have deduced the actual color of a planet orbiting another star 63 light-years away.

Moms need help to overcome breastfeeding worries, study says
More support is needed to help women overcome doubts in the hope that they will breastfeed their babies for longer, says a University of Alberta nutrition researcher.

Whole genome sequencing opens a new way for the diagnosis and medical therapy for autism
An international consortium, consisting of Autism Speaks, Duke University School of Medicine, The Hospital for Sick Children of Toronto, BGI and other institutes, has investigated the genetic variants in 32 families with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD).

Southampton engineers develop novel method to increase lifespan of joint replacements
Researchers at the University of Southampton have completed a project that will enable surgeons to fit joint replacements with longer, optimised lifespans.

Hippo pathway to better cancer treatment?
Researchers at the University of British Columbia have discovered a potential new pathway to treat cancer by asking some odd questions about the size of animals.

Use redistricting maps to make organ allocation more equitable, Johns Hopkins researchers advocate
Using the same type of mathematical formulas used to draw political redistricting maps, Johns Hopkins researchers say they have developed a model that would allow for the more equitable allocation of livers from deceased donors for transplantation.

First estrogen receptor mutation found in a young woman
A receptor mutation that essentially blocks estrogen's action has been identified for the first time in a female, researchers report.

Autism Speaks collaborative releases first full genome sequencing for autism
An Autism Speaks collaborative has found full genome sequencing provides the definitive look at wide ranging genetic variations associated with ASD.

Gene therapy using lentivirus promising in 3 youngsters
Two Houston researchers from Baylor College of Medicine and Texas Children's Hospital were part of an international team that developed a new gene therapy approach to treatment of Wiskott-Aldrich Syndrome, a fatal inherited form of immunodeficiency.

CWRU nursing school to study home visits for people with HIV and chronic illnesses
Researchers at Case Western Reserve University's Frances Payne Bolton School of Nursing will assess how effective palliative care home health visits are in treating people with HIV and other chronic illnesses in a new four-year, $1.7-million study funded by the National Institute of Nursing Research.

HIV used to cure 2 genetic diseases: The idea of an Italian scientist proves successful
For the first time ever, gene therapy offers real hope of a cure for two rare genetic diseases, metachromatic leukodystrophy and Wiskott-Aldrich syndrome.

Funds to aid macular degeneration research
A University of California, Riverside bioengineering professor has received a two-year, $120,000 grant to search for chemical compounds that have the potential to treat age-related macular degeneration.

Gammapod developed at University of Maryland School of Medicine targets early-stage breast cancer
An experimental innovation in cancer treatment from the Department of Radiation Oncology at the University of Maryland School of Medicine could provide a new, high-precision, noninvasive method of treating early-stage breast cancer.

Hubble spots azure blue planet
Astronomers using the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope have, for the first time, determined the true colour of a planet orbiting another star.

NIST shows how to make a compact frequency comb in minutes
Laser frequency combs -- high-precision tools for measuring different colors of light in an ever-growing range of applications -- are not only getting smaller but also much easier to make.

Nerves play key role in triggering prostate cancer and influencing its spread
Researchers at Albert Einstein College of Medicine of Yeshiva University have found that nerves play a critical role in both the development and spread of prostate tumors.

Stellar monsters do not collide -- no hope for a spectacular catastrophe
One might expect that collisions between the remains of monstrous stars, with masses reaching 200-300 times that of our Sun, would be among the most spectacular phenomena in the Universe.

Higher BMI increases risk of gallstones, especially in women
New research reveals a causal association between elevated body mass index and increased risk of gallstone disease.

UC San Diego's HPWREN aids firefighters in Chariot fire
The high-speed data transmission network of the UC San Diego-based High-Performance Wireless and Research Education Network is once again showing its utility as a public safety asset as firefighters battle the 7,000-acre Chariot Fire near Mount Laguna, east of San Diego.

Nature: How forests cope with more carbon dioxide
While carbon dioxide concentration in the atmosphere increases, forests enhance their water use efficiency: They can take up more gas without losing more water.

Spanish researchers find that cells in the early embryo battle for becoming part of the organism
Spanish researchers at the Centro Nacional de Investigaciones Cardiovasculares have found that during the early stages of mammalian development, embryonic cells embark on a battle for survival.

50-year-old assumptions about strength muscled aside
New understanding of where muscles get their power from turns 50 years of strength belief on its head.

Royal Holloway University awarded £1.3m for television technology research
Why do old television programs look so strange and formal?

Study finds surprising benefits about dairy cow inflammation
Study finds surprising benefits about diary cow inflammation, including benefits to late pregnancy and lactation.

New molecularly imprinted nicotine receptors
Molecularly imprinted polymers are made to contain binding sites capable of recognizing nicotine; thus the fingerprint of the nicotine created in the polymer allows it to serve as an ideal molecular recognition element.

Acceptance predicts satisfaction in later life
When older adults lose control as they move into residential care, they adapt and accept what cannot be changed in order to stay happy.

Political options tested in virtual wind tunnel
A team of researchers from ETH Zurich, the Graduate Institute for International and Development Studies in Geneva and the Hebrew University of Jerusalem have developed an evidence-based model of violence in Jerusalem.

Killer whale genetics: Redefining stock structure in a marine top predator
By collecting 462 skin samples from both resident and transient wild killer whales in the northern North Pacific and characterizing individual genetic variability using two different genetic markers (mitochondrial DNA and nuclear microsatellites), scientists have discovered further subdivision within the whale stocks than was previously believed.

NASA sees Typhoon Soulik's eye closed for 'renovations'
When a hurricane or typhoon's eye becomes filled with clouds, it can be a sign the storm is weakening, or that high clouds have moved over it, or its eyewall is being replaced.

Clinicians should pay attention to stroke patients who cannot walk at 3-6 mon after onset
Clinicians should pay attention to stroke patients who cannot walk at 3-6 mon after onset.

Lab tests key to identifying, treating infectious diseases
A new guide developed by the Infectious Diseases Society of America and the American Society for Microbiology will help physicians appropriately and accurately use laboratory tests for the diagnosis of infectious diseases.

ID got you, under the skin
Forget fingerprints or iris recognition, the next big thing in biometrics will be a thermal imaging scan that maps the blood vessels under the skin of your face for instantaneous face recognition that would be almost impossible to spoof.

As ice cover disappears, life in the frigid Antarctic moves fast
It might be cold in the Antarctic, but that doesn't mean that life there necessarily moves slowly.

Global study stresses importance of public Internet access
Millions of people in low-income countries still depend on public computer and Internet access venues despite the global proliferation of mobile phones and home computers.

Lionfish expedition: Down deep is where the big, scary ones live
The first expedition to use a deep-diving submersible to study the Atlantic Ocean lionfish invasion found something very disturbing -- at 300 feet deep, there were still significant populations of these predatory fish, and they were big.

UI research funding tops $400 million for fifth year
The University of Iowa topped $400 million in external research funding for the fifth consecutive year, fueled by gains in corporate, industry, and philanthropic funding that helped offset cutbacks in federal research funding amid tight budgets and the government-mandated sequestration.

What is glass? A million-dollar question
Three University of Akron researchers hoping to uncover the mysteries of glass formation have received a $1 million grant from the prestigious and highly selective W.M.

2 BUSM faculty receive Alzheimer's disease grants
David Harris, M.D., Ph.D., chair and professor of biochemistry and Benjamin Wolozin, M.D., Ph.D., professor of pharmacology and experimental therapeutics and neurology at Boston University School of Medicine, have received Massachusetts Neuroscience Consortium Awards.

Choline intake improves memory and attention-holding capacity
The benefits of this vitamin B source have been demonstrated in an experimental study in rats conducted by scientists at the University of Granada (Spain), Simón Bolívar University (Venezuela) and the University of York (UK).

Women at risk of developing postpartum psychosis need close monitoring, says new review
There are clear risk factors for postpartum psychosis that all women should be asked about antenatally to ensure early recognition and prompt treatment of the condition, says a new review published today (12 July) in The Obstetrician & Gynaecologist.

'Biology of Aging' -- New textbook now available
Garland Science is proud to announce the publication of the new textbook Biology of Aging by Roger B.

Clinical trial assesses anti-melanoma vaccine's ability to induce an anti-cancer immune response
In the current issue of the Journal of Clinical Investigation, Dr.

Cry analyzer seeks clues to babies' health
Researchers at Brown University and Women & Infants Hospital have developed a new tool that analyzes the cries of babies, searching for clues to potential health or developmental problems.

New Innovation and Knowledge Centre to drive UK's synthetic biology progress
A new £10 million Innovation and Knowledge Centre, that will boost the UK's ability to translate the emerging field of synthetic biology into application and provide a bridge between academia and industry was announced today.

Insect discovery sheds light on climate change
Simon Fraser University biologists have discovered a new, extinct family of insects that will help scientists better understand how some animals responded to global climate change and the evolution of communities.

Ship noise impairs feeding and heightens predation risk for crabs
A study published in the journal Animal Behaviour found that the noise of passing ships disrupts feeding for the common shore crab.

Glass sponges take advantage of retreating Antarctic ice shelves
The breakup and collapse of the Larsen A ice shelf in the western Weddell Sea in 1995 has resulted in fundamental changes to life on the sea bed in less than two decades.

Training program meets 'critical need' for earlier autism identification
A Vanderbilt research program that trains community pediatricians to diagnose autism within their individual practices may lead to more effective treatment of the disorder that now affects an estimated one in 88 children.

Preventing cell death in osteoarthritis
UK scientists have found a naturally occurring molecule in the body which may have important consequences for treating osteoarthritis.

Understanding bulls' gene-rich Y chromosomes may improve herd fertility
The Y chromosomes of cattle have more genes and are more active than the Y chromosomes of other primates, according to researchers.

Solar tsunami used to measure Sun's magnetic field
A solar tsunami observed by NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory and the Japanese Hinode spacecraft has been used to provide the first accurate estimates of the Sun's magnetic field.

Scientists cast doubt on theory of what triggered Antarctic glaciation
A team of US and UK scientists has found geologic evidence that casts doubt on one of the conventional explanations for how Antarctica's ice sheet began forming.

Daydreaming simulated by computer model
Scientists have created a virtual model of the brain that daydreams like humans do.

Mukhanov and Starobinsky to receive $500,000 Gruber Cosmology Prize
The 2013 Gruber Cosmology Prize recognises Viatcheslav Mukhanov and Alexei Starobinsky for their formative contributions to inflationary theory, an essential component for understanding the evolution and structure of the Universe.

Novel drug acts in unique way to protect against kidney injury
New research reveals the mechanism by which an experimental drug can protect the kidneys from sudden damage, called acute kidney injury.

3 neglected-disease treatments newly added to WHO Essential Medicines List for paediatric use
This week the World Health Organization (WHO) released its newly updated 4th WHO Model List of Essential Medicines for Children, in which three treatments developed by the Drugs for Neglected Diseases initiative and its partners have now been included.

Nobel Laureate Daniel Kahneman selected as the winner of the 2013 SAGE-CASBS Award
SAGE and the Center for the Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences at Stanford University (CASBS) are delighted to announce that Dr.

Critical pathway in cell cycle may lead to cancer development
A team of scientists at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies has identified why disruption of a vital pathway in cell cycle control leads to the proliferation of cancer cells.

First large public health study of medical marijuana use in young adults to begin with NIH grant
Drexel University has received a grant for a five-year study of medical marijuana and its impact on drug use and physical and psychological health among young adults in Los Angeles.

AMP concerned about the structure and application of gap fill payment amounts
The Association for Molecular Pathology submitted comments to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services expressing serious concerns about the gap fill process.

Mexican American youth show signs of metabolic syndrome: Early screening critical
Mexican American children are experiencing substantial burdens of obesity, pre-diabetes, and other health problems which historically would have been expected to develop much later in life.

Researchers estimate over 2 million deaths annually from air pollution
Over two million deaths occur each year as a direct result of human-caused outdoor air pollution, a new study has found.

Hidden strains of HPV found in 'virus-negative' genital warts
In a new study published in Virology, researchers assessed the DNA found in samples taken from 40 patients with 'virus-negative' genital warts.

Research reveals Earth's core affects length of day
Research at the University of Liverpool has found that variations in the length of day over periods of between one and 10 years are caused by processes in the Earth's core.

UM researchers land NASA grant to search space for exoplanets
NASA recently awarded researchers at the University of Montana a grant to support a $1.125 million project to build a dedicated observatory to detect Earth-like exoplanets.

The brain processes complex stimuli more cumulatively than we thought
A new study reveals that the representation of complex features in the brain may begin in a hierarchically lower brain region than previously thought.

Obese dads pass on predisposition to obesity and metabolic disorders to their kids
If you are obese and hope to be a father, here's another reason to lose weight: your children and grandchildren may inherit your waistline or metabolic disorders.

FASEB thanks Senate Appropriations Committee for proposed NIH funding increase
The Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology applauds the Senate Appropriations Committee for approving a fiscal year 2014 Labor, Health and Human Services Appropriations bill that provides $30.95 billion for the National Institutes of Health.

Whole chickens from farmers markets may have more pathogenic bacteria
Raw, whole chickens purchased from farmers markets throughout Pennsylvania contained significantly higher levels of bacteria that can cause foodborne illness compared to those purchased from grocery stores in the region, according to a small-scale study by researchers in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences.

New theory uncovers cancer's deep evolutionary roots
A new way to look at cancer -- by tracing its deep evolutionary roots to the dawn of multicellularity more than a billion years ago -- has been proposed by Paul Davies of Arizona State University in collaboration with Charles Lineweaver of the Australian National University.

Recession led teens to focus more on social problems, environment, psychologists report
During the Great Recession, high school students became more concerned about others and the environment, psychologists at UCLA and SDSU report.

Fund launched to seed new thinking in sustaining the future of health
The Wellcome Trust today launches a global funding scheme to seed research into the impact of a changing world on the future of human health.

New insight into the human genome through the lens of evolution
By comparing the human genome to the genomes of 34 other mammals, Australian scientists have described an unexpectedly high proportion of functional elements conserved through evolution.

Parental divorce in childhood is linked to raised inflammation in adulthood
People who experience parental divorce during childhood have higher levels of an inflammatory marker in the blood which is known to predict future health, according to new research from UCL.

'Taste sensor' genes in female butterflies vital to species' survival, UCI study finds
Giving the phrase

New hope in the fight against childhood cancer
Cancer Research UK scientists at the University of Southampton are seeing positive results in a pre-clinical trial that could bring treatments for a particular aggressive form of childhood cancer closer to reality.

Snakes devour more mosquito-eating birds as climate change heats forests
Rising temperatures threaten wild birds, including the Missouri-native Acadian flycatcher, by making snakes more active, according to University of Missouri biologist John Faaborg.

N.C.'s investment management industry large, growing
The investment management industry in North Carolina is large and growing, concluded a new report from Kenan-Flagler Business School at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

NASA sees Chantal weaken to a remnant
Tropical Storm Chantal moved over Hispaniola on July 10 when NASA's Terra satellite passed overhead from space, and less than 24 hours later the storm weakened to a remnant low pressure area.

Grazing slugs hinder grassland restoration
Research by Newcastle University, UK, shows slugs may be hampering efforts to restore ecologically important grasslands.

Artifact suppression and analysis of brain activities with EEG signals
Researchers from Pabna University of Science and Technology (Pabna, Bangladesh) and the University of Tokyo (Tokyo, Japan) used a data adaptive technique for artifact suppression and brain wave extraction from electroencephalography signals to detect regional brain activities.

Distant quakes trigger tremors at US waste-injection sites, says study
Large earthquakes from distant parts of the globe are setting off tremors around waste-fluid injection wells in the central United States, says a new study.

KAIST's HUBO ready for DARPA's Robotics Challenge trials
In tandem with Rainbow Co., Professor Jun-Ho Oh at KAIST and his research team developed DRC-HUBO, which will compete as Team DRC-HUBO led by Drexel University at the DARPA's Robotics Challenge Trials to be held in December 2013.

Important advance in the fight against skin cancer
Researchers from the Hospital del Mar Medical Research Institute, lead by Lluís Espinosa, have identified a new function of the IB protein that is key in the development of squamous-cell carcinoma, a type of skin cancer.

Elephants depend on water for cooling, but only when it gets too hot
Overheating is a dangerous prospect for any animal, but for elephants, without sweat glands, it's a very real risk.

Cells make costume changes for cardiac regeneration
If the heart following a heart attack is not sufficiently supplied with blood, heart tissue dies.

Buying behavior can be swayed by cultural mindset
People with collectivist mindsets tend to value the relationships between items more than the particular items themselves. 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