Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

December 08, 2013
3D printing used as a tool to explain theoretical physics
Students may soon be able to reach out and touch some of the theoretical concepts they are taught in their physics classes thanks to a novel idea devised by a group of researchers from Imperial College London.

New insights into pathophysiology of sickle cell disease and thalassemia may help improve care
New research presented today during the 55th American Society of Hematology Annual Meeting and Exposition in New Orleans uncovers several important insights into the pathophysiology of sickle cell disease and thalassemia that may soon translate into the development of better, more targeted treatments for hundreds of thousands of patients worldwide.

Surprising diversity in aging revealed in nature
In our youth we are strong and healthy and then we weaken and die -- that's probably how most would describe what aging is all about.

Peer-review science is taking off on Twitter, but who is tweeting what and why?
The most tweeted peer-reviewed articles published between 2010 and 2012, and the trends associated with their social media success, have been identified by Stefanie Haustein at the University of Montreal's School of Library and Information Science.

Biomarker linked to aggressive breast cancers, poor outcomes in African-Americans
Among African-American women with breast cancer, increased levels of the protein HSET were associated with worse breast cancer outcomes, according to results presented here at the Sixth AACR Conference on the Science of Cancer Health Disparities in Racial/Ethnic Minorities and the Medically Underserved, held Dec.

Bed bugs can survive freezing temperatures, but cold can still kill them
A new study has found that bed bugs may be less susceptible to freezing temperatures than previously reported, but given adequate time and cold enough temperatures, freezing can still be an effective means of control.

Novel drug regimen can improve stem cell transplantation outcomes
Adding bortezomib (Velcade) to standard preventive therapy for graft-versus-host-disease results in improved outcomes for patients receiving stem-cell transplants from mismatched and unrelated donors, according to researchers from Dana-Farber Cancer Institute.

Air pollution kills well below European Union air quality limits
Prolonged exposure to tiny particles of soot or dust found in traffic fumes and industrial emissions may be more deadly below current European Union air quality limits than previously thought, according to new research examining two decades of data from over 360 000 residents of large cities in 13 European countries.

Following tradition: Top examples of indigenous knowledge preserving biodiversity, ecosystem service
With the planet losing species 100 to 1,000 times faster than the natural extinction rate, international experts assembling for global biodiversity meetings in Turkey Dec.

Diabetes identified as risk factor for liver cancer across ethnic groups
Diabetes was associated with an increased risk for developing a type of liver cancer called hepatocellular carcinoma, and this association was highest for Latinos, followed by Hawaiians, African-Americans, and Japanese-Americans, according to results presented here at the Sixth AACR Conference on the Science of Cancer Health Disparities in Racial/Ethnic Minorities and the Medically Underserved, held Dec.

Electrical control of single atom magnets
The energy needed to change the magnetic orientation of a single atom -- which determines its magnetic stability and therefore its usefulness in a variety of future device applications -- can be modified by varying the atom's electrical coupling to nearby metals.

Economic factors may affect getting guideline-recommended breast cancer treatment
Women with interruptions in health insurance coverage or with low income levels had a significantly increased likelihood of failing to receive breast cancer care that is in concordance with recommended treatment guidelines, according to results presented here at the Sixth AACR Conference on the Science of Cancer Health Disparities in Racial/Ethnic Minorities and the Medically Underserved, held Dec.

How can we improve the efficacy of antipsychotics in the era of personalized pharmacotherapy?
The clinical context of the administration and dosage of antipsychotics may influence their efficacy, reported Philippe Vincent and Édouard Kouassi, from the Institut universitaire en santé mentale de Montréal and Université de Montréal.

Targeted treatment can significantly reduce relapse in children with AML leukemia
A new study finds targeted treatment can significantly reduce relapse risk in high-risk children with acute myeloid leukemia.

New rearing method may help control of the western bean cutworm
A new rearing method used to maintain a laboratory colony of western bean cutworm has allowed researchers to gather the first reported data for the insect's susceptibility to Bt Cry toxins using laboratory dose-response bioassays.

Extensive variability in olfactory receptors influences human odor perception
Researchers from the Monell Center and collaborating institutions have found that as much as 30 percent of the large array of human olfactory receptor differs between any two individuals.

From common colds to deadly lung diseases, 1 protein plays key role
An international team of researchers has zeroed in on a protein that plays a key role in many lung-related ailments, from seasonal coughing and hacking to more serious diseases such as MRSA infections and cystic fibrosis.

Deep Carbon Observatory scientists discover quick recipe for producing hydrogen
Scientists in Lyon discover a quick-cook recipe for copious volumes of hydrogen, a breakthrough suggesting a better way of producing the fuel that propels rockets and energizes battery-like fuel cells.

The invasive Turkestan cockroach is displacing the oriental cockroach in the southwestern US
A new article in the Journal of Economic Entomology describes the biology and life history of the Turkestan cockroach, which is displacing the oriental cockroach in the southwestern United States.

Potential biological factor contributing to racial disparities in prostate cancer
Researchers have uncovered a potential biological factor that may contribute to disparities in prostate cancer incidence and mortality between African-American and non-Hispanic white men in the United States, according to results presented here at the Sixth AACR Conference on the Science of Cancer Health Disparities in Racial/Ethnic Minorities and the Medically Underserved, held Dec.

Concussion secrets unveiled in mice and people
There is more than meets the eye following even a mild traumatic brain injury.

Novel method could help bring cancer biomarkers to clinic
International study demonstrates protein-measurement technique's potential to standardize quantification of the entire human proteome.

Cockroach never seen before in US is identified in New York
A species of cockroach never found in the United States before has been positively identified in Manhattan.

Boosting the immune system to treat brain cancer
Researchers at the University of Calgary's Hotchkiss Brain Institute have made a discovery that could lead to better treatment for patients suffering from brain cancer.

Gene promotes 1 in 100 of tumors
Scientists propose that a gene that is mutated in one per cent of cancer patients could offer a new avenue to personalised cancer therapy.

Malaria conference looks to Israel's past for modern solutions
Malaria infects over 250 million worldwide and kills an estimated 660,000 annually -- mostly African children.

Study: Majority of epilepsy surgery patients enjoy improvement in their physical and social well-being
The majority of epilepsy patients who have brain surgery to treat their disorder are satisfied with the results in reducing epilepsy-related seizures and improving their psychological and social well-being.

Does zinc supplementation reduce aluminum-induced neurotoxicity?
A new study from these researchers further evaluated the effect of zinc supplementation on aluminum-induced neurotoxicity, and found zinc supplementation exhibited an antioxidant capacity.

rTMS for hallucination in schizophrenia spectrum disorders
Repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation uses a non-invasive and relatively painless tool to stimulate the human brain in vivo using very strong, pulsed magnetic fields.

Prion protein can trigger spongiform encephalopathy and neurodegeneration
Zhiqi Song and coworkers from China Agricultural University, China introduce two types of disease-associated prion proteins, the cytosolic form and the transmembrane form, during biosynthesis through the endoplasmic reticulum quality-control system, and propose an effective model and testing method for cytosolic forms of prion protein.

Flipping a gene switch reactivates fetal hemoglobin, may reverse sickle cell disease
Hematology researchers have manipulated key biological events in adult blood cells to produce a form of hemoglobin normally absent after the newborn period.

Optimal parameter of Neiguan acupuncture for cerebral infarction
The individual difference and non-repeatability in acupuncture have not only restricted the development of acupuncture, but have also affected the specificity of acupoints.

Aging and gene expression -- possible links to autism and schizophrenia in offspring
Advanced paternal age has been associated with greater risk for psychiatric disorders, such as schizophrenia and autism.
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