Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

February 19, 2014
New sitting risk: Disability after 60
If you're 60 and older, every additional hour a day you spend sitting is linked to doubling the risk of being disabled -- regardless of how much exercise you get, reports a new study.

Beaumont holds first international congress on underactive bladder
Beaumont Health System urologists hope to heighten awareness of underactive bladder, or UAB, through an international forum funded in part by the National Institutes of Health.

NuSTAR helps untangle how stars explode
For the first time, an international team of astrophysicists, including Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory scientists, have unraveled how stars blow up in supernova explosions.

SDSC team develops multi-scale simulation software for chemistry research
Researchers at the San Diego Supercomputer Center at the University of California, San Diego, have developed software that greatly expands the types of multi-scale QM/MM (mixed quantum and molecular mechanical) simulations of complex chemical systems that scientists can use to design new drugs, better chemicals, or improved enzymes for biofuels production.

Public defibrillator shortage helping to boost heart attack deaths away from hospital
The restricted availability of defibrillators, and poor understanding of how to use them, are helping to boost the number of deaths from heart attacks occurring outside hospitals, suggests a study of one English county, published online in the journal Heart.

HPV vaccination is associated with reduced risk of cervical lesions in Denmark
A reduced risk of cervical lesions among Danish girls and women at the population level is associated with use of a quadrivalent HPV vaccine after only six years, according to a new study published Feb.

Which asthma drugs, dosages work best for African Americans?
The University of Illinois at Chicago has received funding from the National Institutes of Health to determine what combination and dosages of asthma medications works best to manage asthma in African Americans, who suffer much higher rates of serious asthma attacks, hospitalizations and asthma-related deaths than do white patients.

Bevacizumab offers no benefit for newly diagnosed glioblastoma, MD Anderson-led study finds
The angiogenesis inhibitor bevacizumab (Avastin) failed to increase overall survival or statistically significant progression-free survival for glioblastoma patients in the frontline setting, according to a study led by researchers at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center.

Infants with leukemia inherit susceptibility
Babies who develop leukemia during the first year of life appear to inherit an unfortunate combination of genetic variations that may make the infants highly susceptible to the disease, according to a new study at Washington University School of Medicine in St.

Blood pressure medications given right after stroke not beneficial, study finds
A major study has found that giving stroke patients medications to lower their blood pressure during the first 48 hours after a stroke does not reduce the likelihood of death or major disability.

RXTE reveals the cloudy cores of active galaxies
Using data from NASA's Rossi X-ray Timing Explorer (RXTE) satellite, an international team has uncovered a dozen instances where X-ray signals from active galaxies dimmed as a result of a cloud of gas moving across our line of sight.

Despite unprecedented investment in malaria control, 57 percent of Africa's population remains at moderate to high risk of contracting the most deadly form of malaria
Despite unprecedented investment in malaria control in Africa over the past decade, about 57 percent of the population still live in areas where risk of infection remains moderate to high, according to new research published in The Lancet.

Adding bevacizumab to initital glioblastoma treatment doesn't improve overall survival
Results of a randomized phase III clinical trial conducted by the Radiation Therapy Oncology Group determined that adding bevacizumab to initial treatment for glioblastoma did not improve patient overall survival or progression-free survival.

Scientists identify the switch that says it's time to sleep
The switch in the brain that sends us off to sleep has been identified by researchers at Oxford University's Centre for Neural Circuits and Behaviour in a study in fruit flies.

A forgotten model of the universe
A paper provides the first English translation and an analysis of one of Einstein's little-known papers,

Surveys find that despite economic challenges Malagasy fishers support fishing regulations
Scientists from the Wildlife Conservation Society, the ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies, and other groups have found that the fishing villages of Madagascar -- a country with little history of natural resource regulation -- are generally supportive of fishing regulations, an encouraging finding that bodes well for sustainable strategies needed to reduce poverty in the island nation.

Discovery by Baylor University researchers sheds new light on the habitat of early apes
Baylor University researchers discover definitive evidence of the environment inhabited by the early ape Proconsul on Rusinga Island, Kenya.

Could metabolism play a role in epilepsy?
Researchers from the Franciscan University of Steubenville, Ohio, are exploring a possible link between metabolic defects and seizures.

Cell therapy shows remarkable ability to eradicate cancer in clinical study
The largest clinical study ever conducted to date of patients with advanced leukemia found that 88 percent achieved complete remissions after being treated with genetically modified versions of their own immune cells.

U of I study: Couples, pay attention to your relationship work ethic
Is a date with your partner as important to you as a meeting at work?

Aging men: More uplifts, fewer hassles until the age of 65-70
A new study of how men approach their golden years found that how happy individuals are remains relatively stable for some 80 percent of the population, but perceptions of unhappiness -- or dealing with 'hassles' -- tends to get worse once you are about 65-70 years old.

Joseph Glorioso, Ph.D., receives Pioneer Award
Joseph C. Glorioso, III, Ph.D., devoted much of his research career to developing herpes viruses as efficient vectors for delivering therapeutic genes into cells, and has received a Pioneer Award from Human Gene Therapy.

ORNL microscopy system delivers real-time view of battery electrochemistry
Using a new microscopy method, researchers can image and measure electrochemical processes in batteries in real time and at nanoscale resolution.

Reasons for becoming self-employed in later life vary by gender, culture
Self-employment can allow older workers to stay in the labor market longer and earn additional income, yet little research has addressed if reasons for self-employment vary across gender and culture.

Ants build raft to escape flood, protect queen
When facing a flood, ants build rafts and use both the buoyancy of the brood and the recovery ability of workers to minimize injury or death.

Peru's Manu National Park sets new biodiversity record
When it comes to amphibian and reptile biodiversity, the eastern slopes of the Andes mountains in South America stand out.

Managing chronic bone and joint pain
Musculoskeletal pain of the bone, joint and muscles is one of the most common reasons for primary care visits in the United States.

NIH team discovers genetic disorder causing strokes and vascular inflammation in children
National Institutes of Health researchers have identified gene variants that cause a rare syndrome of sporadic fevers, skin rashes and recurring strokes, beginning early in childhood.

An essential step toward printing living tissues
A new bioprinting method developed at the Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering at Harvard University and the Harvard School of Engineering and Applied Sciences creates intricately patterned 3-D tissue constructs with multiple types of cells and tiny blood vessels.

A step closer to a photonic future
The future of computing may lie not in electrons, but in photons -- in microprocessors that use light instead of electrical signals.

UNH research: Most of us have made best memories by age 25
By the time most people are 25, they have made the most important memories of their lives, according to new research from the University of New Hampshire.

Making nanoelectronics last longer for medical devices, 'cyborgs'
The debut of cyborgs who are part human and part machine may be a long way off, but researchers say they now may be getting closer.

Clouds seen circling supermassive black holes
Astronomers see huge clouds of gas orbiting supermassive black holes at the centers of galaxies.

LGBT youth face greater cancer risks, CCNY-led study
A new study led by City College of New York psychologist Margaret Rosario found that youths of same-sex orientation are more likely to engage in behaviors associated with cancer risk than heterosexuals.

Two new butterfly species discovered in eastern USA
Researchers have discovered two new to science species of butterflies in eastern USA.

Remote Antarctic telescope reveals gas cloud where stars are born
Using a telescope installed at the driest place on earth -- Ridge A in Antarctica -- a UNSW-led team of researchers has identified a giant gas cloud in our galaxy which appears to be in an early stage of formation.

New study reveals communications potential of graphene
Providing secure wireless connections and improving the efficiency of communication devices could be another application for graphene, as demonstrated by scientists at Queen Mary University of London and the Cambridge Graphene Centre.

A new laser for a faster Internet
A new laser developed by a research group at Caltech holds the potential to increase by orders of magnitude the rate of data transmission in the optical-fiber network -- the backbone of the Internet.

Does more stress equal more headaches?
A new study provides evidence for what many people who experience headache have long suspected -- having more stress in your life leads to more headaches.

Minor added benefit of indacaterol/glycopyrronium in COPD
Adults with COPD of moderate or severe severity grade with no more than 2 flare-ups per year have fewer breathing difficulties when treated with the drug combination.

Whole genome analysis, stat
Although the time and cost of sequencing an entire human genome has plummeted, analyzing the resulting three billion base pairs of genetic information can take months.

Research prevents zoonotic feline tularemia by finding influential geospatial factors
A Kansas State University epidemiologist is helping cats, pet owners and soldiers stay healthy by researching feline tularemia.

When faced with a hard decision, people tend to blame fate
We tend to deal with difficult decisions by shifting responsibility for the decision to fate, according to new research published in Psychological Science.

Genetics linked to children viewing high amounts of violent media
The lifelong debate of nature versus nurture continues -- this time in what your children watch.

Saul Friedlander and Marvin Minsky among 2014 Dan David Prize winners
Pulitzer Prize-winning Holocaust historian Prof. Saul Friedlander and artificial intelligence pioneer Prof.

A method for the diagnosis and prognosis of the most aggressive skin cancer, is patented
UPV/EHU researchers have developed a method for the diagnosis and prognosis of cutaneous melanoma, the type of skin cancer with the highest mortality rate.

IU mathematician receives $2.7 million to establish center in Russia
Vladimir Touraev, a Russian high school math teacher in the mid-1970s who 30 years later would become the first named professor in the Indiana University Department of Mathematics, has been awarded over $2.7 million to establish a new mathematics laboratory in Russia.

Pond-dwelling powerhouse's genome points to its biofuel potential
Duckweed is a tiny floating plant that's been known to drive people daffy.

Better cache management could improve chip performance, cut energy use
Cleverer management of the local memory banks known as 'caches' could improve computer chips' performance while reducing their energy consumption.

Chemical leak in W.Va. shows gaps in research, policy
The chemical leak that contaminated drinking water in the Charleston, W.Va., area last month put in sharp relief the shortcomings of the policies and research that apply to thousands of chemicals in use today.

'Beautiful but sad' music can help people feel better
New research from psychologists at the universities of Kent and Limerick has found that music that is felt to be 'beautiful but sad' can help people feel better when they're feeling blue.

Advance in energy storage could speed up development of next-gen electronics
Electronics are getting smaller all the time, but there's a limit to how tiny they can get with today's materials.

Insurance status may influence transfer decisions in trauma cases, Stanford study reveals
Emergency rooms are less likely to transfer critically injured patients to trauma centers if they have health insurance, according to a new study by researchers at the Stanford University School of Medicine.

Antidepressant holds promise in treating Alzheimer's agitation
An antidepressant medication has shown potential in treating symptoms of agitation that occur with Alzheimer's disease and in alleviating caregivers' stress, according to a multi-site US-Canada study.

Using holograms to improve electronic devices
A team of researchers from the University of California, Riverside Bourns College of Engineering and Russian Academy of Science have demonstrated a new type of holographic memory device that could provide unprecedented data storage capacity and data processing capabilities in electronic devices.

Gecko-inspired adhesion: Self-cleaning and reliable
Geckos outclass adhesive tapes in one respect: Even after repeated contact with dirt and dust do their feet perfectly adhere to smooth surfaces.

Springer to publish Journal of Nephrology
Beginning in 2014, Springer will publish the Journal of Nephrology, the official publication of the Italian Society of Nephrology.

Mistaken point, Sanctuary of Zeus, catastrophic outburst floods, shocked sand grains
GSA Bulletin postings for February cover the sculpting of Earth's surface as seen in the Pyrenees; facies architecture in Washington State, USA; atmospheric circulation recorded in the Permian Maroon Formation; preglacial fluvial gorges and valleys; banded iron formations; paleosols in Wapadsberg Pass, South Africa; Ediacaran fossils from Mistaken Point, Newfoundland; geologic forensics and sedimentary fingerprints; catastrophic outburst floods recorded in the Tibetan Plateau; the Sudbury impact structure, Canada; and observations at the Sanctuary of Zeus.

Targeted treatment for ovarian cancer discovered
Researchers at Women & Infants Hospital of Rhode Island have developed a biologic drug that would prevent the production of a protein known to allow ovarian cancer cells to grow aggressively while being resistant to chemotherapy.

Food packaging chemicals may be harmful to human health over long term
The synthetic chemicals used in the packaging, storage, and processing of foodstuffs might be harmful to human health over the long term, warn environmental scientists in a commentary in the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health.

American Heart Association awards Loyola $438,740 for cardiac research
The American Heart Association has awarded Loyola University Chicago Stritch School of Medicine $438,740 for cardiac research in 2013, bringing the lifetime total the organization has awarded to Loyola to $10.6 million.

Giant Magellan telescope looking toward construction
The international consortium of the Giant Magellan Telescope (GMT) project has passed two major reviews and is positioned to enter the construction phase.

Newly developed chemical restores light perception to blind mice
Progressive degeneration of photoreceptors -- the rods and cones of the eyes -- causes blinding diseases such as retinitis pigmentosa and age-related macular degeneration.

The nose knows in asthma
Nasal tissue samples may make genetic profiles of asthmatic patients more a more common and valuable tool to personalize therapy and guide research.

Rutgers scientists identify structure of virus that could lead to hepatitis C vaccine
Rutgers University scientists have determined the structure of a hepatitis C surface protein, a finding that could assist in the development of a vaccine to halt the spread of the the deadly disease that has infected 3.2 million Americans.

An innovative approach to promote water use efficiency
Increasing block-rate water budgets are an innovative type of escalating tiered price structure in which the consumption block sizes are based on household characteristics, environmental conditions, and a judgment by the water utility.

Graduate student makes major discovery about seal evolution
Modern pinnipeds (the group that includes seals, sea lions and walruses) show a range of sexual dimorphism (large differences in size between males and females) and mating systems that span the extremes of modern mammals.

Statistics research could build consensus around climate predictions
Vast amounts of data related to climate change are being compiled by researchers worldwide with varying climate projections.

Huntington's disease: Hot on the trail of misfolded proteins' toxic modus operandi
Proteins are the workhorses of the cell, and their correctly folded three-dimensional structures are critical to cellular functions.

Many Texans struggling to pay for health service as Affordable Care Act is about to launch
Many Texans were struggling to pay for basic health services on the eve of the launch of the Affordable Care Act's Health Insurance Marketplace, according to a report released today by Rice University's Baker Institute for Public Policy and the Episcopal Health Foundation.

Bevacizumab (Avastin) fails to improve survival for newly diagnosed glioblastoma patients
Adding bevacizumab (Avastin) to standard chemotherapy and radiation treatment does not improve survival for patients newly diagnosed with the often deadly brain cancer glioblastoma, researchers report in the Feb.

Diamonds in the tail of the scorpion
A new image from ESO's La Silla Observatory in Chile shows the bright star cluster Messier 7.

REACT clinical trial supports new approach of accelerated treatment for Crohn's disease
The final results from an international clinical trial involving nearly 2,000 patients with Crohn's disease support the use of a new management strategy referred to as accelerated step-care as a best practice for the care of active Crohn's disease.

Space eye with 34 telescopes will investigate 1 million stars
A University of Warwick researcher is to lead the science consortium which aims to discover and learn the properties of Earth-like worlds in the Sun's neighborhood with a new European Space Agency space mission named PLATO.

UK failing to harness its bioenergy potential
The UK could generate almost half its energy needs from biomass sources, including household waste, agricultural residues and home-grown biofuels by 2050, new research suggests.

Study shows in vivo endomicroscopy improves detection of Barrett's esophagus-related neoplasia
New research shows that the addition of confocal laser endomicroscopy to high-definition white-light endoscopy enables improved real-time endoscopic diagnosis of Barrett's esophagus dysplasia (neoplastic tissue) by using targeted biopsies of abnormal mucosa to reduce unnecessary mucosal biopsies and potentially reduce costs.

Rocks around the clock: Asteroids pound tiny star
Scientists using the Australian Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation's Parkes telescope and another telescope in South Africa have found evidence that a tiny star called PSR J0738-4042 is being pounded by asteroids -- large lumps of rock from space.

Clutter cutter
In a messy house, people use computers to manage paper and photo clutter; companies use computer systems to track their inventory.

NuSTAR telescope takes first peek into core of supernova
Astronomers have peered for the first time into the heart of an exploding star in the final minutes of its existence.

Study reveals workings of working memory
Brown University cognitive scientists have identified specific brain regions that work together to allow us to choose from among the options we store in working memory.

Iron deficiency may increase stroke risk through sticky blood
Scientists at Imperial College London have discovered that iron deficiency may increase stroke risk by making the blood more sticky.

Afatinib: Added benefit depends on mutation status
In advanced non-small cell lung cancer, the new tyrosine-kinase inhibitor is more effective than combination chemotherapy in patients with certain mutations.

Family problems experienced in childhood and adolescence affect brain development
New research has revealed that exposure to common family problems during childhood and early adolescence affects brain development, which could lead to mental health issues in later life.

Managed honeybees linked to new diseases in wild bees
Diseases that are common in managed honeybee colonies are now widespread in the UK's wild bumblebees, according to research published in Nature.

Malaria maps reveal that 184 million Africans still live in extremely high-risk areas despite decade of control efforts
Forty African countries showed reductions in malaria transmission between 2000-2010, but despite this progress, more than half (57 percent) of the population in countries endemic for malaria continue to live in areas of moderate to intense transmission, with infection rates over 10 percent.

Smellizing -- imagining a product's smell -- increases consumer desire, study finds
Seeing is believing, but smellizing -- a new term for prompting consumers to imagine the smell of a product -- could be the next step toward more effective advertising.

What is El Nino Taimasa?
During a very strong El Nino, sea level can drop in the tropical western South Pacific and tides remain below normal for up to a year, especially around Samoa.

Kinetic battery chargers get a boost
New technology to capture the kinetic energy of our everyday movements, such as walking, and to convert it into electrical energy has come a step closer thanks to research to be published in the International Journal Biomechatronics and Biomedical Robotics.

Special air filter blocks small particles called UFPs from getting inside cars
While taking in the scenery during long road trips, passengers also may be taking in potentially harmful ultrafine particles that come into the car through outdoor air vents.

Self-employment growth does not bank on access to capital
An entrepreneurial climate is more important than access to financing and banks in encouraging self-employment growth, according to rural economists.

How stick insects honed friction to grip without sticking
Scientists have discovered that, when upright, stick insects don't stick.

Chronic pain relief more likely when psychological science involved
When it comes to chronic pain, psychological interventions often provide more relief than prescription drugs or surgery without the risk of side effects, but are used much less frequently than traditional medical treatments, according to a comprehensive review published by the American Psychological Association.

Kessler Foundation researchers study impact of head movement on fMRI data
Kessler Foundation researchers have shown that discarding data from subjects with multiple sclerosis who exhibit head movement during functional magnetic resonance imaging may bias sampling away from subjects with lower cognitive ability.

The ups and downs of early atmospheric oxygen
The period of extended low oxygen spanning from roughly two to less than one billion years ago was a time of remarkable chemical stability in the Earth's ocean and atmosphere.

Two-thirds of women not taking folic acid before pregnancy to prevent spina bifida
Research published today from Queen Mary University of London reveals less than 1 in 3 women have taken folic acid supplements before pregnancy to prevent spina bifida and other birth defects of the brain, spine, or spinal cord (neural tube defects).

Stratification determines the fate of fish stocks in the Baltic Sea
In the Baltic Sea, two cod stocks evolve independently. Also, the juveniles of two economically important flatfish species, flounder and plaice, live there within limited space.

Study of jazz players shows common brain circuitry processes music and language
The brains of jazz musicians engrossed in spontaneous, improvisational musical conversation showed robust activation of brain areas traditionally associated with spoken language and syntax, which are used to interpret the structure of phrases and sentences.

Study finds potential solution for feeding, swallowing difficulties in children with autism
Research out of the George Washington University reveals new information on the pathogenesis of feeding and swallowing difficulties often found in children with neurodevelopmental disorders, including autism and intellectual disability.

Dreams, deja vu and delusions caused by faulty 'reality testing'
New research from the University of Adelaide has delved into the reasons why some people are unable to break free of their delusions, despite overwhelming evidence explaining the delusion isn't real.

NASA satellite sees a ragged eye develop in Tropical Cyclone Guito
NASA satellite data was an 'eye opener' when it came to Tropical Cyclone 15S, now known as Guito in the Mozambique Channel today, Feb.

Gene sequencing project discovers common driver of a childhood brain tumor
The St. Jude Children's Research Hospital-Washington University Pediatric Cancer Genome Project has identified the most common genetic alteration ever reported in the brain tumor ependymoma and evidence that the alteration drives tumor development.

Molecular aberration signals cancer
Several scientists, including one at Simon Fraser University, have made a discovery that strongly links a little understood molecule, which is similar to DNA, to cancer and cancer survival.

Addicted to tanning?
They keep tanning, even after turning a deep brown and experiencing some of the negative consequences.

Study finds nothing so sweet as a voice like your own
Have you ever noticed that your best friends speak the same way?
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