Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

October 02, 2013
Long-term cognitive impairment too common after critical illness
Patients treated in intensive care units across the globe are entering their medical care with no evidence of cognitive impairment but oftentimes leaving with deficits similar to those seen in patients with traumatic brain injury or mild Alzheimer's disease that persists for at least a year, according to a Vanderbilt study published today in the New England Journal of Medicine.

VCU receives federal grant to study genetic markers that may predict chronic depression
Virginia Commonwealth University has received a $3 million grant from the National Institute of Mental Health to study key molecular markers found in DNA that predict chronic depression.

Group Health wins 2 PCORI awards for patient-centered research
The Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute selected Group Health Research Institute for two awards: Karen Wernli, Ph.D., won a three-year contract for $1.9 million on how well breast MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) works compared to mammography for regularly checking for new signs of breast cancer in women who have had the disease before.

Making eye contact doesn't always help your cause
New research shows that making eye contact, long considered an effective way of bringing someone to your point of view, may actually make people more resistant to persuasion, especially when they already disagree.

MARC travel awards announced for the 2013 SACNAS meeting
FASEB MARC Program has announced the travel award recipients for the 2013 Society for the Advancement of Chicanos and Native Americans in Science annual meeting in San Antonio, TX from October 3-6, 2013.

Bug vs. bug: Benign C. difficile strains keep fatal strains at bay
In a recent study, two different strains of non-toxigenic Clostridium difficile provided protection against both historic and epidemic C. difficile strains.

In spectrum of ACL injury treatment, new study reveals cost savings for those who need surgery
To aid in the decision making process, a study published today in the Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery offers new information for those considering or needing surgery.

Radioactive shale gas contaminants found at wastewater discharge site
Elevated levels of radioactivity, salts and metals have been found in river water and sediments at a site where treated water from oil and gas operations is discharged into a western Pennsylvania creek.

Scripps Florida scientists shed light on body's master energy regulator
Scientists from the Florida campus of the Scripps Research Institute have discovered some key features that explain just what turns on a protein that is considered to be a master regulator of how the human body uses and stores energy.

Predictors of substance abuse identified among teens with bipolar disorder
A study published in the October 2013 issue of the Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry found that approximately one in three teens with bipolar disorder developed substance abuse, for the first time, during 4 years of follow-up.

Louisiana Tech University, Riverside Research partner to pursue academic, research initiatives
Louisiana Tech University and Riverside Research, a not-for-profit defense contractor that supports government, industry, and academic institutions around the nation in the development and application of cybersecurity technologies, signed an agreement Wednesday that will enable the two organizations to jointly pursue new academic and educational research initiatives.

Early spring warming has greatest effect on breaking bud
A statistical analysis of how plants are responding to climate change has found that unseasonal warming during the late-winter/early-spring period has more effect on the plant's timing than at any other time of the year.

Specialized intestinal cells cause some cases of Crohn's disease
Scientists have discovered that Crohn's disease, the inflammatory bowel disorder, can originate from specialized intestinal cell type called Paneth cells.

Seamless photography: Using mathematical models for image stitching
Panoramic photographs were invented to capture large objects or scenes that could not otherwise fit within the constraints of a single photo.

Finland to lead the way as a designer of cellulose-based products
The combination of strong design competence and cutting-edge cellulose-based technologies can result in new commercially successful brands.

Longline fishery in Costa Rica kills thousands of sea turtles and sharks
The second-most-common catch on Costa Rica's longline fisheries in the last decade was not a commercial fish species.

No kissing or singing in the rain
A new study done in Brazil and Canada shows for the first time that insects modify their mating behavior in anticipation of storms, an adaptation that may have favored their survival throughout evolution.

Death of a spruce tree
Examining a long-lived forest, researchers have found that black spruce trees, which dominate the northern forests of North America, succumb about five years after being weakened by environmental stresses.

Protecting the weedy and wild kin of globally important crops
As more and more people recognize the importance of the wild relatives of crop plants to agriculture and food security, interest in cataloging and conserving these plants is building around the world.

McMaster lab develops new tuberculosis vaccine
The new tuberculosis vaccine was developed to act as a booster to Bacille Calmette Guerin, currently the only TB vaccine available.

NSF, DOE partner to support University of Houston's diesel emissions research
As diesel engines have become more fuel efficient, reducing their emissions has become more challenging, because better efficiency means more of the energy in diesel fuel is used to move the vehicle and less escapes out the tailpipe in the form of heat, presenting a challenge for emissions reduction.

How one transportation business survived hurricane sandy
In a year-long case study of a major American transportation company, researchers at The Ohio State University have uncovered the strategies that helped the company maintain safety and meet customer demand during 2012's Hurricane Sandy.

CWRU researchers probe brain implant failure and countermeasure
A team of researchers led by Case Western Reserve University has received a $1.8 million National Institutes of Health grant to investigate why brain implants fail, and to test a drug that may prevent such failure.

Increasing accessibility of 3-D printing raises concerns about plastic guns
Three-dimensional printers can make artists' and hobbyists' dreams a reality, opening up a new world of inexpensive, on-demand plastic parts manufacturing, but there's also a dark side.

2 million and counting: NYBG digitization project reaches major milestone
As part of the global effort to make biological collections available online, The New York Botanical Garden recently added the two-millionth plant specimen to its digital research collection.

HydroEye(R) benefits post-menopausal dry eye sufferers in new clinical research
More than half of peri and post-menopausal women are estimated to suffer from dry eye.

Douglas Institute researchers identify the neural circuits that modulate REM sleep
Researchers on the team of Dr. Antoine Adamantidis identified, for the first time, a precise causal link between neuronal activity in the lateral hypothalamus and the state of REM sleep.

Mild cognitive impairment in Parkinson's disease may be linked with extensive neurodegeneration
Early mild cognitive impairment may indicate faster neurodegeneration.

America is increasingly diverse, but challenges remain
America's communities are becoming increasingly diverse, but there are still important concerns about racial and ethnic integration in the future, according to researchers.

New imaging system can help diagnose disease, monitor hazardous substances
To meet demands for ever smaller imaging systems, researchers are working to create entirely unconventional ways of focusing light.

AVS science symposium in Long Beach Oct. 27 -- Nov. 1
The AVS Science Symposium in Long Beach will occur from Oct.

Transgendered males seen as an asset to some ancestral societies
Transgendered androphilic males were accepted in traditional hunter-gatherer cultures because they were an extra set of hands to support their families.

Human skin wound dressings to treat cutaneous ulcers
Researchers from University of Laval's Faculty of Medicine and CHU de Quebec have shown that it is possible to treat venous ulcers unresponsive to conventional treatment with wound dressings made from human skin grown in vitro.

Scientists find insect DEET receptors, develop safe alternatives to DEET
Researchers at the University of California, Riverside have identified (1) DEET-detecting olfactory receptors in insects that cause repellency and (2) three safe compounds that mimic DEET and could one day be used to prevent the transmission of deadly vector-borne diseases.

Computer scientists develop new approach to sort cells up to 38 times faster
A team of engineers led by computer scientists at the University of California, San Diego, has developed a new approach that marries computer vision and hardware optimization to sort cells up to 38 times faster than is currently possible.

Radioactive materials and contaminants found at fracking wastewater disposal site
A new study has found that liquid wastes from hydraulic fracturing, or

Key mechanism behind herpes revealed
Researchers at Lund University in Sweden and Carnegie Mellon University have for the first time managed to measure the internal pressure that enables the herpes virus to infect cells in the human body.

NYU physicist Dvali awarded $1.5 Million grant to investigate properties of black holes
NYU physicist Georgi Dvali has been awarded a $1.5 million grant by the European Research Council to investigate the properties of black holes.

Radiofrequency ablation effectively treats Barrett's esophagus
Radiofrequency ablation leads to remission for 91 percent of patients with dysplastic Barrett's esophagus, according to new figures published in Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology, the official clinical practice journal of the American Gastroenterological Association.

Depression may increase your risk of Parkinson's disease
People who are depressed may have triple the risk of developing Parkinson's disease, according to a study published in the Oct.

Exploring the future of our coral reefs
The current condition and future prospects of the world's coral reefs will be in the spotlight at a symposium of leading marine scientists in Townsville on 10-11 October 2013.

Free head, neck cancer screenings have positive impact in urban areas
Offering free head and neck cancer screenings annually to the community not only has the possibility of early detection, but also the opportunity -- particularly in an urban city -- to increase a person's understanding of risk factors that cause cancer, according to a new study from Henry Ford Hospital in Detroit.

Insects modify mating behavior in anticipation of storms
Insects modify calling and courting mating behavior in response to changes in air pressure.

Erectile dysfunction drugs may prevent colon cancer
Erectile dysfunction drugs may be able to help prevent or even treat colon cancer, researchers say.

Advocates applaud launch of MTN-017, world's first phase II rectal microbicide study
IRMA applauds the launch of the world's first-ever Phase II rectal microbicide trial and notes importance of community input into the trial design.

Recruiting E. coli to combat hard-to-treat bacterial infections
The notorious bacteria E. coli is best known for making people sick, but scientists have reprogrammed the microbe -- which also comes in harmless varieties -- to make it seek out and fight other disease-causing pathogens.

Toward understanding the dangers of the fake marijuana called 'Spice' or 'K2'
The harmful effects of increasingly popular designer cannabis products called

Tears for fears
Young mice produce a pheromone in their tears that protects them from mating activity by adult male mice.

NIH awards grant for new NYU step program created to bolster biomedical research training
The National Institutes of Health has awarded a five-year grant to Keith J.

Research shows genetic anti-inflammatory defect predisposes children to lymphoma
New research shows that children with an inherited genetic defect in a critical anti-inflammatory pathway have a genetic predisposition to lymphoma.

New class of drugs lowers cholesterol in first human trial
A new class of cholesterol-lowering drugs that target a recently discovered regulator of harmful cholesterol could be an alternative or complementary treatment for the 30 million people who take statins, after the first trial in humans confirms the technique's feasibility and safety.

High-dose statins reduce gum inflammation in heart disease patients
Statins, commonly prescribed medications for lowering cholesterol, also reduced inflammation associated with gum disease in a new study published today in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.

Mom's weight gain during pregnancy tied to childhood obesity
A study of 41,133 mothers and their children in Arkansas shows that high pregnancy weight gain increases the risk of obesity in those children through age 12.

Fear of predators drives honey bees away from good food sources
Honey bees live in a world filled with danger in which predators seize them from the sky and wait to ambush them on flowers.

Red wine chemical remains effective against cancer after the body converts it
Paper by University of Leicester scientists shows resveratrol can still be used in the body after it has been metabolized.

Graphene with aroma
A completely new and very flexible graphene preparation variant of has been developed by the group of Andrey Turchanin from the University of Bielefeld in cooperation with the University of Ulm and three departments of the Physikalisch-Technische Bundesanstalt.

California's new mental health system helps people live independently
A new analysis by Oregon State University researchers of California's mental health system finds that comprehensive, community-based mental health programs are helping people with serious mental illness transition to independent living.

IRICoR and Université de Montréal license a novel program for early-onset morbid obesity to Pfizer
The Institute for Research in Immunology and Cancer -- Commercialization of Research and its host institution, the Université de Montréal today announced the licensing to Pfizer Inc. of a novel early-onset morbid obesity pre-clinical program developed at the Institute for Research in Immunology and Cancer.

Eye contact may make people more resistant to persuasion
Making eye contact has long been considered an effective way of drawing a listener in and bringing him or her around to your point of view.

New method allows quantitative nanoscopic imaging through silicon
A team of scientists from The University of Texas at Arlington and MIT has figured out how to quantitatively observe cellular processes taking place on so-called

Measuring height by connecting clocks
How far above sea level is a place located? And where exactly is

International study shows efficacy of new gastric cancer drug
The phase III study, published in the prestigious scientific journal, The Lancet, in which researchers at the Vall d'Hebron University Hospital and the Vall d'Hebron Institute of Oncology have participated, shows that an antibody (ramucirumab) inhibits the action of various proteins involved in tumor growth, prolonging survival of patients with advanced gastric cancer.

Does post-traumatic stress disorder increase the risk of metabolic syndrome?
A new study involving a comprehensive review of the medical literature shows that PTSD also increases an individual's risk of metabolic syndrome.

Like father, not like son
Brain and song structure in zebra finches are strongly influenced by the environment.

Freedom and choice key to restorative lunch breaks, says new study.
Working through lunch might not be as bad as they say, suggests a new paper on work recovery, but only if employees choose that themselves, and don't feel pressured into it.

UH Graduate College of Social Work to receive national award
The Council on Social Work Education will recognize the University of Houston Graduate College of Social Work program with the 2013 Partners in Advancing Education for International Social Work Award.

'Cupcake bans' rare, but policies may reduce overexposure to sugary treats
School district policies and state laws discouraging sugary foods and beverages at classroom parties can affect school practices.

New framework to deliver biodiversity knowledge
A new initiative launched today aims to coordinate global efforts and funding to deliver information about life on Earth, and our impacts upon it.

Babies born at 37 and 38 weeks are at higher risk for adverse health outcomes
Babies considered

Sherri Michaels wins 2013 Elsevier Library Connect Charleston Conference Award
Elsevier, a world-leading provider of scientific, technical and medical information products and services, is pleased to announce Ms.

Newly identified biomarkers help predict outcome in deadly lung disease
A Yale-led study has identified a gene expression profile that can predict outcomes and lead to better treatment for one of the most lethal lung diseases, idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis.

Peculiar, diverse and dangerous to crops: A checklist of the scale insects of Iran
Largely diverse and economically important group, the scale insects of Iran require further investigation and improvement of knowledge, both from taxonomic and practical point of view.

Researchers launch first-ever phase II safety study of rectal microbicide to prevent HIV
Taking an important step toward the development of a product to prevent HIV infections associated with unprotected anal sex, researchers today announced the launch of a global Phase II clinical trial of a potential rectal microbicide.

Spectrum Health study shows surgery may be effective treatment option for older epilepsy patients
A recently published study by researchers from Spectrum Health and Henry Ford Hospital suggests that surgery may be an effective treatment for epilepsy in older patients, a finding that runs counter to conventional treatment methods.

Discovery of charged droplets could lead to more efficient power plants
Condensation on a metal plate leads to formation of droplets that carry electric charge, could improve power-plant efficiency.

Rice U study: Technology, not uninsured patients, driving hospital costs
Technology, not uninsured patients, likely explains the steep rise in the cost of hospital care in Texas in recent years, according to Vivian Ho, the chair in health economics at Rice University's Baker Institute for Public Policy, a professor of economics at Rice and a professor of medicine at Baylor College of Medicine.

14th Annual UNC Charlotte Cyber Security Symposium Oct. 9, 2013
UNC Charlotte's College of Computing and Informatics will host its 14th Annual UNC Charlotte Cyber Security Symposium on the UNC Charlotte campus on Wednesday, Oct.

Early mammal varieties declined as flowering plants radiated
The dramatic explosion of flowering plant species that occurred about 100 million years ago was thought to have been good news for evolving mammals, providing them with new options for food and habitat.

October GSA Today: Earth upon Impact
In the October issue of GSA Today, Grant Young of the University of Western Ontario discusses the possible causes of the numerous glaciations that characterized the Neoproterozoic and concludes that a dramatic shift in Earth's climate may have occurred during the Ediacaran, in part due to a large marine impact.

New MRI technique can detect genetic condition that attacks the heart, brain and nerves
A genetic condition that attacks multiple organs and usually results in fatal heart problems can be detected using a new MRI technique that was developed at the University of Alberta. 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