Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

July 19, 2013
The hair of the dog
A surprisingly large number of dogs suffer from hyperadrenocorticism. The symptoms are caused by excessive amounts of hormones -- glucocorticoids -- in the body.

Purple sunlight eaters
A protein found in the membranes of ancient microorganisms that live in desert salt flats could offer a new way of using sunlight to generate environmentally friendly hydrogen fuel, according to a new study by researchers at the US Department of Energy's Argonne National Laboratory.

Electric vehicles and smart grids: First EU-US Interoperability Centre opens for business
The first of the twin centers designed to promote common standards in electric mobility and smart grids on both sides of the Atlantic was today inaugurated near Chicago.

Disney researchers reconstruct detailed 3D scenes from hundreds of high-resolution 2D images
Investigators at Disney Research, Z├╝rich have developed a method for using hundreds of photographic images to build 3D computer models of complex, real-life scenes that meet the increasing demands of today's movie, TV and game producers for high-resolution imagery.

Disney researchers use encoded audio signals to provide 'second screen' experiences at most venues
Providing a

Researchers describe potential for MERS coronavirus to spread internationally
The life-threatening MERS coronavirus that has emerged in the Middle East could spread faster and wider during two international mass gatherings involving millions of people in the next few months, according to researchers who describe the most likely pathways of international spread based upon worldwide patterns of air travel.

Disney researchers create computer models that capture style and process of portrait artists
By monitoring artists as they sketch human faces, stroke by stroke, scientists at Disney Research, Pittsburgh, have built computer models that learn each artist's drawing style, how they use strokes and how they select features to highlight as they interpret a face into a portrait.

Calcium linked to increased risk of heart disease and death in patients with kidney disease
Kidney patients who take calcium supplements to lower their phosphorous levels may be at a 22 percent higher risk of death than those who take other non-calcium based treatments, according to a new study by Women's College Hospital's Dr.

Overnights away from home affect children's attachments, U.Va. study shows
In joint custody arrangements, infants who spent overnights away from their mothers had less attachment to their mothers, a University of Virginia study shows.

If you're not looking for it, you probably won't see it
In a new study from Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston, researchers have found that even expert searchers, operating in their domain of expertise, are vulnerable to inattentional blindness.

Stanford expert says Internet's backbone can readily be made more sustainable
The US Department of Energy has announced that it wants to establish minimum energy efficiency standards for all computers and servers sold in the United States.

Scientists discover new variability in iron supply to the oceans with climate implications
The supply of dissolved iron to oceans around continental shelves has been found to be more variable by region than previously believed -- with implications for future climate prediction.

Disney Researchers develop software tools to create physical versions of virtual characters
Achieving a desired motion in an animated physical character, whether it be a small toy or a full-sized figure, demands highly specialized engineering skills.

Haste and waste on neuronal pathways
Researchers of the Department of Biosystems Science and Engineering of ETH Zurich were able to measure the speed of neuronal signal conduction along segments of single axons in neuronal cultures by using a high-resolution electrical method.

It's not just the heat -- it's the ozone: Study highlights hidden dangers
During heat waves -- when ozone production rises --- plants' ozone absorption is curtailed, leaving more pollution in the air, and costing an estimated 460 lives in the UK in the hot summer of 2006.

Lentivirus carrying target genes infects normal rat cochlea
Lentivirus carrying target genes infects normal rat cochlea.

Large coronal hole near the sun's north pole
The European Space Agency/NASA Solar and Heliospheric Observatory, or SOHO, captured an image of a gigantic coronal hole hovering over the sun's north pole on July 18, 2013, at 9:06 a.m.

Electroacupuncture is effective for post-stroke detrusor overactivity
Electroacupuncture is effective for post-stroke detrusor overactivity.

Best paper award for MIT Portugal Ph.D. student at international conference
Michael developed a tool that helps identifying the causes of nonconformities in environments similar to mass production.

Gene mutation in dogs offers clues for neural tube defects in humans
A gene related to neural tube defects in dogs has for the first time been identified by researchers at the University of California, Davis, and University of Iowa.

Regenstrief, IU study: Caregivers open to stopping cancer screening as dementia progresses
Research from the Regenstrief Institute and the Indiana University Center for Aging Research has found that many family caregivers of older adults with dementia are willing to consider stopping cancer screening of the elderly individual; they are also relieved when the older adult's physician brings it up.

Nighttime heat waves quadruple in Pacific Northwest
Nighttime heat waves -- events where the nighttime low is unusually hot for at least three days in a row -- are becoming more common in western Washington and Oregon.

Chinese herbal medicines are safe and effective for vascular dementia
Chinese herbal medicines are safe and effective for vascular dementia.

First global atlas of marine plankton reveals remarkable underwater world
Under the microscope, they look like they could be from another planet, but these microscopic organisms inhabit the depths of our oceans in nearly infinite numbers.

Black bears return to Missouri indicates healthy forests
Thanks to a reintroduction program in Arkansas during the 50s and 60s, hundreds of bears amble through the forests of southern Missouri, according to a joint study by University of Missouri, Mississippi State University, and Missouri Department of Conservation biologists, who warn that although the bear population is still small, outdoor recreationists and homeowners should take precautions in the Ozark forest to avoid attracting bears.

New plan of attack in cancer fight
New research by Harvard scientists shows that, under certain conditions, using two drugs in a

Alternative target for breast cancer drugs
Scientists have identified higher levels of a receptor protein found on the surface of human breast tumor cells that may serve as a new drug target for the treatment of breast cancer.

New report helps clinicians decide when to order vascular laboratory tests
A new report issued today by the American College of Cardiology and developed in collaboration with 10 other leading professional societies provides detailed criteria to help clinicians optimize the appropriate use of certain noninvasive vascular tests when caring for patients with known or suspected disorders of the venous (veins) system.

Smart scavenging
In seeking technological solutions to aid in its national security mission, the Department of Homeland Security is looking for opportunities to forage through the plethora of technologies already being used or in development for other government agencies, industry and academia.

The genetic key to conquering cholera
Researchers have long understood that genetics can play a role in how susceptible people are to contracting cholera, but a team of Harvard scientists is now uncovering evidence of genetic changes that might also help protect some people from contracting the deadly disease.

All in the eyes: Disney Research demos technology for richly expressive 3D printed eyes
Face-to-face communication begins with the eyes, a crucial factor in the design of interactive physical characters.

COPD increases risk of developing cerebral microbleeds
Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease is associated with an increased risk of developing cerebral microbleeds, according to a new study from researchers in the Netherlands.

U of M researchers identify new functions for autoimmune disease 'risk' gene
Researchers at the University of Minnesota have identified infection-fighting and inflammation-suppressing functions for a gene associated with human autoimmune disease.

Cheaper anti-cancer drug as effective as expensive drug in treating wet AMD
An anti-cancer drug has been proven to be equally as effective in treating the most common cause of blindness in older adults as a more expensive drug specifically formulated for this purpose.

All-male physics departments are not proof of bias against hiring women, suggests new AIP study
Many US universities have no women at all among their physics faculty, and when people talk about gender equity in physics, this fact is often cited as evidence of a hiring bias.

Stem cell discovery furthers research on cell-based therapy and cancer
Stem-cell researchers at UC San Francisco have found a key role for a protein called BMI1 that may help scientists direct the development of tissues to replace damaged organs in the human body.

California's Mountain Fire
NASA's Aqua satellite captured an image of California's Mountain Fire on July 18 as the satellite passed overhead in space.

Toronto researchers part of international team that caught neutrinos in the act
An international experiment with contributions from physicists at York University and the University of Toronto today announced a new breakthrough in understanding neutrinos -- nature's most elusive particles.

Disney Research develops method to provide tactile feedback in free air
Depth cameras and other motion-tracking devices allow people to use natural gestures to play computer games, yet the experience remains unnatural because they can't feel what their eyes can see.

Study finds missing piece of pediatric cancer puzzle
Most of the time, it takes decades of accumulating genetic errors for a tumor to develop.

Controlling friction by tuning van der Waals forces
This is a joint press release from Saarland University and the Leibniz Institute for New Materials.

Desktop printing at the nano level
A new low-cost, high-resolution tool is primed to revolutionize how nanotechnology is produced from the desktop, according to a new study by Northwestern University researchers.

Tuberculosis genomes recovered from 200-year old Hungarian mummy
Researchers at the University of Warwick have recovered tuberculosis genomes from the lung tissue of a 215-year old mummy using a technique known as metagenomics.

Rice researchers part of new LHC discovery
Rice University scientists contributed to the first observations of B-sub-s meson decay as predicted by the Standard Model of Particle Physics. 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